Sad little bird

And I'm not talking about the heap of feathers in the yard...

I fancy myself a tough girl. I have a very high threshold for pain and I also have the genetic disorder shared with many athletes that if you get hurt, SUCK IT UP AND KEEP PLAYING.

So remember this? Um, yeah. I finally went to the doctor this week, because it still hurts and I was sick and tired of a certain friend constantly making fun of my jacked-up-crooked-talon-of-a-middle-finger. After chastising me for not coming in two months ago, the doctor directed me to go get x-rays. To lighten the mood, I asked realistically what options we would have if they showed that the finger was indeed fractured. She told me--without hesitation--that the worst-case scenario would be to re-break the finger and set it with pins. Holy geez!

Note to self: When your finger turns purple and swells up like a sausage, see a doctor immediately.

However, the day I did this to myself I did see a doctor. At the time, the doctor happened to be wearing a terrycloth unitard and a borrowed pink feather boa, he was also carrying around a platter of chargrilled brats, and may have been a few beers into a really long night, but nonetheless a doctor he was. He told me what everyone told me (and what I already knew from having broken digits in the past), ice it, splint it, elevate it. Beyond that, there's not much you can do.

I took my x-rays back to my real doctor on the way home from work today and was given potentially grim news. It's fractured and I have to go back in tomorrow morning to get it "casted." I didn't ask too many questions because frankly, ignorance is bliss. If I don't get myself all worked up for my finger to be rebroken, then it probably won't be as bad (FRICK ON A STICK! PLEASE DO NOT LET THEM RE-BREAK MY FINGER).

I'm hoping for the best and also letting you know if you don't hear from me it may be because the--bad people--doctors had to shatter my finger with a hammer and put it back togther again to get it back to normal and I can't type, or because I'm hiding under my bed refusing to come out and get my finger re-broken like a tough girl.


Your guess is as good as mine

So, here's one for you; the other afternoon I looked out my window and saw a smattering of white and grey "stuff" in my backyard. From a distance, it looked like someone had themselves a campfire and left the ashen remnants of the logs. I wouldn't put it past Nutty to host a soiree for his friends, peanut babies roasting on an open fire.

When I finally got around to inspecting the "stuff," I discovered it was feathers. A boatload of feathers. It seems as though the urban wildlife refuge that is my backyard has had yet another casualty.

Note to self: If I ever put this house on the market, remember that "urban wildlife refuge" is NOT a selling point to be included in the description.

But here's the thing? I can't figure out how these feathers got there. Granted they are under a tree, but there are only feathers, no bird parts (unlike what I found after the raccoons started to rule the 'hood). And these feathers look like pigeon feathers... do pigeons hang out in trees? I thought they stuck to gutters and bus stop trash bins?

So I'm thinking that either there is one stressed out pigeon in the tree that molted itself naked, or maybe the bird exploded. I'm serious.


Does it a body good?

Note to self: When you are lactose intolerant, you should NOT consume dairy products.

An obvious note, to be sure, but one that I REFUSE to heed. I have lived an unbelievably fortunate life, which is why the next statement I make is not at all an exaggeration--it may be ridiculous, but I swear it's the truth: the most awful horrible thing that has ever happened in my life is finding out I'm lactose intolerant.

I know, I should be thankful. Believe me, I am. For that to be awful in my world is very fortunate--yes, RIDICULOUS, but very fortunate. But, in all honesty, it's so unbelievably unfortunate. I love milk. I don't think I really started drinking water on my own volition until I got to college and didn't have gallons upon gallons of milk at my disposal 24 hours a day. I love milk so much so that I would marry it. I would marry it and make excuses for it hurting me so, just to maintain our abusive relationship. And don't even get me started on cheese.

Truth be told, I've been allergic to milk since I was born. As a baby, my mom had to give me soy milk, but I somehow grew out of it, or at least it went latent. Until last May, when the allergy reared it's ugly head. There is no need for me to tell you about my symptoms; suffice it to say that when I have dairy products I'm miserable and when I avoid them I'm happy and sunshiny (well, on the outside, on the inside I'm miserable because, "WHERE IS ALL THE CHEESE?!").

This evening I had an impromptu happy hour with a coworker that then stretched into a kajillion course meal ending with the most amazing hot fudge sundae and New Orleans bread pudding with cream. Yes, ice cream and cream. Hmmmm. Were I smart, I would have turned it down. But in my little head, I think, "maybe today is the day that my lactose intolerance is on vacation?" or "maybe today is the day my body will just say 'yes' to bovine byproduct." Alas, today was not that day. But the sundae was amazing... while it lasted.


Who needs the lining anyway

Apparently yesterday was supposed to be the most depressing day of the year. The fact that someone is paid to research that blows my mind--and makes me think that I want to do research. However, my research tells me that the most depressing day of MY year was last Tuesday. "Why?" you ask. Because that was the day I started the morning out forgetting to put deodorant on (man, I hate that!) and then when I was getting into my car to go to work, I split the lining in my wool pants (man, I hate that even more!). I don't know if there is much of anything else that can make me feel lousier about myself than the feeling of that giant rip across your backside and then all the subsequent little rips that come every time you make any movement. Wait for it, wait for it... not yet... okay there's a little more.... and a little more... and now. Now I'm completely ripped from seam to seam. Ahhhhh, thank you, lady. It was getting tight in there.

Note to self: Don't let the lining of your wool pants be what you use to measure your self-worth.

One of the reasons yesterday was supposed to be so depressing was because, and I quote, "by now, it's clear you're failing in your New Year's resolutions." Wow. It's clear? Failing? Aren't we only three weeks into the New Year? What the heck am I supposed to do with the other 49 weeks?

Needless to say, I thought I'd take a look at my goals and try to make myself feel better--and say screw you to my pants and to research.

1. Dorking out in improv classes--done and done. I am surely getting my dorky fix each week. In fact I think I may have set a new bar last week after class when I joined some of my classmates for drinks... at a bar... a dueling piano bar... a dueling piano bar that I suddenly made open mic dueling piano bar. It was like no karaoke I've ever known. And I was adored by--the handful of new friends I was there with--everyone in the place.

2. Remodeling the kitchen--okay, so I've made progress here and have a lot of things planned, but I've yet to make a commitment. Last weekend I went to buy a new door--a door that I want, a door that I have the money for, a door that will kick-off the projects associated with the kitchen. When it came time to buy the door, I just left with the quote. Little Ms. Notetaker is Little Ms. Commitmentphobe. But I'm getting closer.

3. Find balance--okay, so I haven't found it yet. But I don't think I'm throwing the towel in, I CANNOT be imbalanced for the next 49 weeks.

4. Touch my toes--this one's coming soon, and hopefully I can do it without ripping my pants.

Okay, so not perfect, yet. But I'm not going to get depressed about it. And any time I start to get depressed, I'll just think about the vicious game of butt tag we played in improv last week. Yes. Butt tag. Lest us not forget this is the year I make myself happy. Trust me. Butt tag will get you laughing, even on the most depressing day of the year.


That's notchyo cheese!

I may have made a professional enemy today, only, I think I managed to leave without my new enemy knowing who I am (I just have two holes branded into my forehead by the flaming red laser beams that shot out of his eyes.)

Note to self: Never, ever, ever, ever send a group of 20 people to eat at a buffet line if you are not 100% sure it is food that rightfully belongs to you.

I was hosting a meeting today for a group of people with one of our General Managers. When I showed up to the room, there was no food. This was especially unfortunate because I had sent out a message earlier to the attendees that we were providing lunch. Oh, but have no fear, the conference room across the hall had food outside of it--and oddly enough it was EXACTLY THE SAME THING we had ordered. I mean how many people order make your own taco bars and a fancy salad option. Taco bar, okay. Fancy salad, okay. But the two together. WHAT ARE THE ODDS?

Because this was a "leadership" lunch, I made the "leaderful" decision that catering must have gotten the room wrong and that had to be our lunch across the hall, "So everyone, get up and go grab some food, ole!"

Turns out, the odds are really good that people order the make your own taco bar and a fancy salad option together. One of the men in the meeting bolted outside of the room frantic that we were stealing his food. And to me, it seemed so logical that it was not their food, but ours just placed at the wrong room. Probably the best thing to do would have been to ask first instead of sending the cattle stampede to the trough. Oops.

So I sent my crew back to the room so they could start their meeting and I went to--have a meltdown in the kitchenette--troubleshoot. Turns out, it wasn't our food. Damn. And we didn't have any food ordered for today--but had we been in that room a week ago at the same time, our make our own taco bar and fancy salad option would have been waiting there for us, just begging us to eat it. Double damn.

After another stop in the kitchenette for--another meltdown--more troubleshooting. I made my way down to the cafeteria and begged for help. Fortunately some amazing souls took pity on me and pulled 4 pizzas fresh out of the oven. Thank you, thank you, thank you, Chef Ed!

Triumphant, I made my way back up to the meeting with pizza in hand--of course I detoured a little bit so I wouldn't have to be seen by "laser beams for eyes" walking down the hall with my tail between my legs and a lesser lunch.


And had you been standing on the street

You would have just witnessed me throwing a temper tantrum atop one of my dining room chairs. I did go buy batteries after work today (yay, me! I need to celebrate the little victories over laziness) and decided I was going to MAKE THE INCESSANT BEEPING STOP!

Only, when I climbed up on the chair, I spent five minutes trying to get the detector off the wall and it won't budge. Flusterated (flustered and frustrated) that undoubtedly someone outside bore witness to my complete and total smoke detector ineptness, I went down to the basement to try my luck at the one that beeps all the time. Same deal. I cannot get them off the wall. Help. Make. It. Stop.

They are mocking me. I swear. I'm convinced they are in cahoots with the squirrels.

View with a room

I delight in running through the neighborhood at night because it allows you the chance to really see into people's houses.

Okay, that sounds creepy. I'm not talking about in a peeping tom sort of way, but more in a I'm running by, the blinds are open, the lights are on, and you can just see in enough to see how it's decorated, see people in their "natural habitat," and make up a little story in your head about life inside of that house. No? Just me? Come on, I'm sure others do that too.

At any rate, when the place next door to me was demolished a couple of weeks ago, it suddenly left me as the corner lot and allows for many runners, drivers, general loiterers, a nice view into my home and my natural habitat--oh, what stories they must make up based upon what they see. Suddenly the bamboo roman shades I loved so much, and loved for their light filtering as opposed to their privacy keeping, seem like the wrong purchase for window coverings.

As nice as it is to have the behemoth of a duplex gone--I'm getting so much more natural light now--it has left me feeling a little exposed. Not only can people spy on me as I'm sitting at my dining room table on my laptop composing sheer brilliance--ahem, like right now--but also when I make a mad post-shower-towel-clad-nearly-naked dash from my bathroom upstairs to my bedroom. Note to self: Make sure robe is in the bathroom, BEFORE you get in the shower.

It has also left me exposed in another way. For some reason, the tearing down of that duplex compelled the marinara jar to reach out and make contact. Why? I don't know? Because that duplex was something we had in common?! He e-mailed me a week ago, made trite small talk about the duplex and random inconsequential things, and then let me know he broke his phone and no longer had my number and that he was hoping he could get that from me. Needless to say, I haven't responded yet.

With the speed they construct townhouses in this city, I can only hope they are on an accelerated development plan. They can take away all that natural light, I don't need the exposure.


...not as I do

Note to self: Remember to change the batteries in your smoke detectors when they need it.

Here at my blog, I have a little motto, "safety first." Well, except when you just don't feel like practicing normal safety behaviors, in which case the motto is definitely, "lazy first."

I'm sitting here working on a different post, but can't get all my thoughts out because of the persistent beeping of one of my smoke detectors. It's in the basement--the basement that I don't like going into because of what may or may not be living down there. I started noticing the beep last week; I heard it beep a couple of times. But as the days have passed, the frequency of beeping has increased exponentially. It's now to the point where it's beeping minutely.

I should have replaced the battery at first beep, safety first. Actually, normal LMN behavoir would have been to head downstairs and remove the battery to make the beeping stop and replace it after the next trip to the store, or whenever I remember to buy the batteries (I don't have extra batteries with the snaps just laying around). But no, what I've really done is just let the beeping continue, lazy first.

Confession: it wouldn't be so bad if it were just the one in the basement (when I'm upstairs sleeping the beep is somewhat muffled). But the beeping is contagious and has spread to other detectors in the house. I've heard the one in the dining room a couple times this weekend. And, in the spirit of full disclosure, one of the detectors that I removed from the kitchen wall months ago out of frustration that boiling water would always set it off, beeped at me from the kitchen drawer in which it was shoved. When that got to be too much, I removed its battery; it's still grounded to the drawer--and can't come out to play until I get a hood for the stove top.

Tomorrow I will go get more batteries--maybe even purchase a few extra to keep on hand for any more beeping outbreaks. But I'm so tempted to keep playing the lazy card--I have two detectors that are hardwired through my home security system, so I still feel protected. In fact, I put much more faith in those two detectors than "the beepers," which at times feel like their only purpose is to make me jump around waving dishtowels overhead to try and shut them up.

I think they are mocking me.



It's a happy day in my house. My brother's on his way home (or he may be home right now) from Iraq. Everything is sort of veiled in secrecy--when he's officially back, what he was doing over there--but all that matters is he's back (or is close to being back) home.

I'm not sure how families coped in the past, and as far as many current families go, we were blessed that he was only over there for five months and that the insurgency doesn't have an air force or anything that can compete with our planes and pilots. Big sigh of relief. But really, he was over fighting a war. That's what he was doing, day in and day out. That's what a lot of our nation's sons and daughters are doing. While I'm here whining about dates, or procrastinating on my kitchen, or worrying about squirrels in my yard. We are so lucky.

Over the holidays he and I were IMing and it just blew my mind that there he was, half a world away in distance, but in experiences, in emotions, in fear, in culture, and in hope for the future of a stable democracy he may as well have been on Pluto. Everything he's witnessed, and everything that is happening over there is so convenient for us to not even think about. I mean here we are IMing each other and I had to leave our conversation so I could go with my mom to a movie, and he had to leave to go to war. And I could get all, "but they are over there so that us lucky Americans can go to our movies," but I won't. What I will say is that it breaks my heart that they are over there fighting for us, only most of us don't even think about that because it's not on our radar. And they are over there fighting for democracy, but that all the fighting probably won't make it so that there are lucky Iraqis that can go to movies too. I truly believe that education is so critical to democratic success, but anytime a leader emerges, one of their own who is educated and understands democracy and has a legitimate chance of affecting positive change, they are assassinated. It seems so bleak to me. No matter how long we are there and no matter how many of our own--not to mention their own--lay down their lives for the cause, will it really make an impact?

That makes me ache.

But my brother is home, and I could not be happier. I just wish he'd never have to go back.


Where to begin?

Oh my, oh my. I'm not much of a shopper. And if I do go on a shopping binge, I often tend to feel guilty, keep the tags on, the receipt at the ready, and return everything I bought. I wonder if you can do the same thing when you're "shopping around" for dates.

Note to self: There is a lesson here, and an opportunity to grow. You just need to figure out what that is and actually do something with it.

Here's my problem, I'm too nice. Last night I went out with Quick Draw, and it was better than expected. The setting was good, and it was something I have always wanted to do... just maybe not the person I wanted to do it with. A nice guy, to be sure, but not the right nice guy for me.

And today I met up with one of the other guys for an early afternoon trip to the remodeling show, which then turned into drinks and lunch through the Seahawks game, which then turned into a trip to a different bar where we played shuffleboard, which then turned into 3 women cornering me after he went off to the restroom because they were curious what our situation was. They also tried to convince me that I am a lesbian and maybe my dating world would improve if I would just give girls a chance.

Two things I'm sure of: 1) I'm not a lesbian--I may be athletic, and not very girly, but I do know that I like boys, and 2) this guy and I are NOT a match.

As tempting as it was to try and play the lesbian card to get out of the date that would not end, I didn't. I played nice. Too nice. But eventually made it home. Home to my single gal's Saturday night (complete with Trader Joe's fancy pizza, beeping smoke detectors and me waving dish towels over my head), but there's something that is so comfortable and okay about that.


Play on, player...

It's way past Little Ms. Notetaker's bedtime, but she is so dedicated that she is writing a little somethin' somethin' for you (the cosmic Internet void that may or may not be her loyal readers). Just be forewarned there is no drama, and nothing really exciting to report... yet.

The date tonight was decent (scale of one to ten I give it a fiveish, maybe six). Nothing noteworthy. I think we may go to the "rebuilding/remodeling" convention this weekend together; he owns a house and is the midst of crazy construction, and the pass I got in the mail is for two free admissions.

One thing you should know is I'm going to wear the same shirt and sparkly tank combo I wore tonight out tomorrow night (oh, yes, I am telling all of you this because ladies, I know you can support me on this one, it's a smokin' hot top and it makes me feel pretty, and quick draw's never seen it, so he doesn't know that it's my recycled date top. And hells bells, I may even wear it next week when I see the J_______.)

Oh, and a second thing you should know is that the J________ called and we're on for seeing each other next week. This I like.

So far I've kept my cool, but there may be a storm a brewing... we'll wait and see how the evening with quick draw goes.


How many is too many?

In our society of more is more, and want, want, want, gimme, gimme, gimme, how many guys should a girl date at once? I'll tell you something, this girl should NOT date more than one because she turns into a total headcase and can't keep things straight.

I've really dug myself into a hole this week, I think, but maybe not (ah, see the glimpse into my headcaseyness?). So let me catch you up to speed on my dating attention deficit disorder (DADD):

Leading the pack we have the J_____. We've been out five times and have a strong connection. There are a few things that make him, well, a unique player in this game. Those things could maybe be marks against him in a case for long-term dating status (don't worry, they aren't bad things per se, just things I would need to think long and hard about), but we're only five dates in, I think it's too early to make that call, I don't want to think long and hard, I just want to enjoy getting to know a great guy. I'd still like to get to know him better because I like him, I really do.

Enter my thoughts on how online dating has given me DADD and may very well be the downfall of any possibility of playing the field. For those of you unfamiliar with this dating platform, it gives you (and any potential suitors) the ability to virtually stalk each other. Not necessarily stalking in the bad creepy sense, but in the sense of back in the "olden days," er, um high school before caller ID and *69, when you could call your boyfriend's house to see if he's home and hang up when he answers because it just confirmed that he is sitting at home and he's not calling you? What the? I mean, whatever can he be doing that's so important that he's not calling you? Oooh, was that creepy and bad?

At any rate, the site I use tells me who's been looking at me and provides a status report on their activity (i.e., this guy is online this very second, oooh, and he's looking at you right now. Hurry! Duck! Maybe he didn't see you looking back at him... damn, busted.) In the case of the J______, we're both still online and still active in our accounts. However, we aren't looking at each other. Clearly, we're both keeping our options open. Which is totally fine this early in the game, however, it is blatantly there, in boldface red print on the screen: YEP, THIS PERSON IS STILL SHOPPING AROUND. Again, totally fine, but I think the fact that it's there really forces the DTR (define the relationship) talk way too prematurely. It doesn't leave any room for wondering if you're competing. It just kicks you in the shin and says, "Duh." And then it makes you think, "Oh, yeah, well, I can shop around too. In fact I can shop around better than you!"

And then, then you end up scheduling back-to-back-to-back dates with three different guys.

Note to self: Play this cool. There is no need to divulge any of your shopping lists. You are doing nothing wrong unless you freak out and blow your cool. And you already know that's a very very distinct possibility.

So tomorrow night starts the new dating rampage. I'll disclose more details as they all play out. But just know that I was tentatively holding Friday open for the J______, but ended up rescheduling my Saturday lunch with Quick Draw for the Friday night slot. Oh, and to make matters worse Quick Draw's real name is the same as potential boy #4. I'm going to keep an open mind--as best I can--and work on enjoying getting to know great guys, but I would sure love me some magic elixir to cure the DADD.

Until I find some of that, buckle up... here come some posts dedicated to my dating drama and dilemmas.