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This Single Gal's New House

Last Build Date: Wed, 20 Aug 2008 03:39:38 +0000


The perils of Demerol

Tue, 19 Aug 2008 19:43:00 +0000

It has been exactly 2 weeks since my shoulder surgery.

I'm exhausted and it hurts like hell.

I saw my doctor yesterday and she said things are progressing nicely.  Good news I suppose, but it still hurts like hell.

so I'm taking Demerol.
Lots o Demerol.

The drug makes my throat dry up and feel like I'm eating a fucking sandbox.  Tasty stuff, I tell you.

I;d like to eat other things, but I'm not very hungry and when I do want to eat, all I want is ice cream or cookies.

I feel like I'm walking around in a fog and I keep forgetting things... like... um, my train of thought, say, or other exciting things like um when I last took my pain pill.

And then there is the shopping.

Ok, this is really bad.  And I am blaming it on the drugs... but I am shopping and buying things online.  A lot. On drugs.

This can't be good.  Especially because 1.  I have no money and 2.  um, I have no money.

I forget that I ordered something (drugs) and then I get a package.  It's like fucking Christmas or something but without the joy of getting gifts that I don't have to pay for.

I'm terrified of my next credit card bill.

I think the Demerol must be manufactured by some capitalist bastard trying to make a quick buck on the sore losers who have to take the drug to get over the pain of a surgery necessary after a car accident caused by a stupid woman who wasn't paying attention to the road and found the entire thing amusing.

Yes indeed my friends, I went into surgery screaming:  I'm going to sue her!  Sue her!

Classy, huh?

The thing is, I just want to feel better.  No Demerol, a working shoulder.

I want to ride my bike and go kayaking and shit.

Ahh, the joys and perils of Demerol.

I think I heart it.

Hope all is well with you, my friends.
-- The Single Gal


on morphine...

Sun, 10 Aug 2008 20:30:00 +0000

ok, so this post surgery business blows.
i had surgery on tues. all went well, my shoulder is stabilized, blah blah. because i have a severe injury to my brachial plexus (also a result of the car accident) they couldn't give me a nerve block. thus, pain o rama.
i got back from the hospital on wed. on lots of meds. feeling generally awful -- in pain, nauseated, drugged. totally not a good time.
at least i'm not i a shoulder immobilizer. my doc felt sorry for me, i think, so she hooked me up with a sling. i'm somewhat worried it's not stabilized enough and i'm going to screw it p.(image)

drugz r gud

Fri, 08 Aug 2008 23:36:00 +0000

I'm home from the hospital and feel like shit.  Thank God for morphine.  
surgery went well and I'm doing self-directed PT which hurts but I am determined to heal fully and quickly.  Ill do whatever they want me to to get this over with.
My friends have been amazing, especially Anna who stayed with me for a few days and made me food, changed my wound dressings... she is a fucking champion. 
i'll write more later but typung with one hand blows.
hope you are well
the single gal

on ipods and shoulder chopping

Sun, 03 Aug 2008 18:16:00 +0000

As if buying a new car this summer wasn't enough...  I bit the bullet and bought a new computer.

A lovely new MacBook.

I love it.

Made the switch from PC to Mac because of their reliability, design, graphic capabilities, etc etc... and I'm wondering what took me so long.

It's a gorgeous machine, so easy to use, and it doesn't crash every five seconds, as my other computer did.  I haven't had a new computer since 2002.

Good stuff.

And -- check this out -- because I work in education, I got a great educator's discount which also enabled me to get an ipod touch FOR FREE! and a new PRINTER!

I feel like I've freakin' won the lottery.

I heart all things Apple.

I'm hearting a lot of things lately, but...  I'm only half hearting my upcoming surgery...

It will happen on Tuesday, my friends.  

I get a new shoulder.

Yesterday I had a huge breakdown -- HUGE -- feeling frustrated with my immediate family for not giving 2 rips, feeling completely alone and sad and tired and just not wanting to deal with the whole situation.  The pain, the inconvenience, not being able to drive or mow my lawn
(I love mowing my lawn)

The recovery will last at least 6 months, and I won't have full mobility for a year.
That's right, kids.

As if I haven't been dealing with this for a year already.
I just want to move on with my life.
I want to ride my bike.
I want to learn how to kayak.

So, feeling sorry for myself, I had a big meltdown.  Cried like crazy for a few hours.  Wishing I could take back this car accident, rewind a year when I was biking 10 miles a day, running, walking, 15 pounds lighter, in shape, feeling good... and now... 

Wah wah wah tears and teeth gnashing and all of that business

And then I talked to That Guy

I was in quite a state.  Snappy, bitchy, whiny -- you know what I mean.

And That Guy amazingly, did not get irritated but talked me down from the cliff, validated my feelings, hugged me with his words.  

And, I felt better.

That Guy is magic, I tell you.  I've been very blessed.

I woke this morning feeling better about the situation.  Feeling like this is a step on a larger path.  That the surgery, though inconvenient, will teach me something.  I'm anxious to learn what it is.  Will make me slow down.  Will force me to take care of myself.  Reconnect with my body.  And it will help me heal.  I get a new shoulder!  that won't dislocate every five seconds.  I will be in less pain.  I will bike again.  I am determined.  I will be in the shape I was before the accident.  I will do tai chi, go to yoga, life weights. 

 This is temporary.
This I know.

I'm going into the hospital on Tuesday.  I intend to blog while I'm in recovery, but I'm sure it will be drug induced drivel.  Which might be poignant and hilarious, or pathetic as fuck.  Either way, I'm going nowhere, just getting a new shoulder.  To match my new computer and my new car.

Please send good thoughts.

Rock on to Electric Avenue.

Hope this post finds you all well.

-- This Single Gal

Some photos from the wedding...

Tue, 29 Jul 2008 18:52:00 +0000

My fabulous, wise, charming, and beautiful niece... I'm totally in love with her.

(image) (image)

(image) The above picture is of the illustrious Fruits, his fabulous new bride, my niece, and my sister-in-law.

The picture below is of some random dude and my aunt, Debra. She is hilarious.


My mother rockin' her mother of the groom gear.


My brother and my cousin. My cousin is drinking a muddy Mountain Dew -- whiskey and Dew -- a favorite of my grandfather. We ended up having waaay too many of these later in the evening.

Good times.


Hope you are well.

--The Single Gal


I barely made it out alive...

Tue, 29 Jul 2008 03:38:00 +0000

I returned from Iowa last evening -- pleased as punch to be out of the cornfields and back amongst the mountains and water.

Holy crap
was intense.

My brother's wedding was beautiful and went over very well. Food was good. Location was good. Weather was good. Bride looked beautiful. All the rest.

My new sister-in-law's family were a bunch of very fun party maniacs who danced all night and brought life to the Marriott ballroom, baby.

Brought it.

During the course of the weekend, I got to meet my niece who is the best ever, and got to see my fabulous cousin and my aunts and uncles. That was also nice.

the trip was emotionally challenging.

I made the error of going to Iowa too early. I hung out 4 days before the wedding. I should have just shown up for the rehearsal dinner.

Most of the time, I had nothing to do, and could never seem to find any members of my family, even though they were in the same city... I ate meals by myself, went on solo walks. It was very weird... to be surrounded by family, but feeling super alone.

I kept sane through late night phone calls to a hunky boy on the other side of the country. He was so amazing, I can't tell you... I'm totally crazy about That Guy.

I was feeling pretty low and crap crap before the wedding began. The wedding itself was beautiful, but the reception was laced with many wine-laden conversations. They included lovely comments such as:

1. Wait, you're 36?! How could you be? You're not married yet.
2. It's up to you now. Your brothers are both married. You can't disappoint your parents.
3. You'll have to get married on July 26. Both of your brothers did.
4. I know how it feels to have both of your younger siblings get married before you do.
5. Is your family coming to help you with your surgery?


Good times.

I am happy to be home.

Hope this finds you well.
-- The Single Gal(image)

Holy holy holy

Mon, 21 Jul 2008 05:03:00 +0000

I typed the words in the subject line and the psalm we used to sing in church on Sundays is running through my head. You know, the one in the red vinyl Glory and Praise book...

I have to go to Iowa on Tuesday. Unlike the other two trips I've made there in the past year, this one is for a celebration. My youngest brother, the Illustrious Fruits, is tying the knot.

The Fruits is a spectacular guy -- kindhearted, soft-spoken, hilarious. But you've got to watch your Jesus talk around that guy. The word causes poor little Fruits to break out in hives.

You see, we grew up Catholic.

My parents dutifully dragged my brothers and I to church every freaking Sunday. We sat in the same pew. We left the house at the same time. I spent the entire mass thinking about the boy I had a crush on that week.

When I was old enough to drive, my middle brother and I offered to drive ourselves to church so we could go to the later mass. (Our family usually went to the 8 am Sunday mass -- a freakin' skull crusher for teenagers.)

I don't know how it happened, but we realized one Sunday that we didn't really need to attend mass, we just had to make it look like we did.

The scheme was brilliant. I would drop Tony off in front of the chapel (where no one went) while I drove around the block. He'd go in, do the holy water business, snag a program, and run out the door. I would pick him up and we would go out for ice cream or breakfast during the mass, returning to my parents' house, feigning piousness, with proof of our holiness in hand.

As soon as he hit 10, Fruits followed our lead... he ditched, too.

The ditching happened for a million reasons and the reasons seemed to change as we got older and wiser. At first we decided to bail because church was boring, and then whether or not we should attend ended in heated discussions of theological / spiritual / political issues.

And then we heard about how the Catholic church treated one of our dearest relatives. The news was appaling, a secret in our family. Based on how they treated my great-aunt, I will never be a member of the Catholic church again.

This is why I find it very amusing / strange / difficult that Fruits is getting married in a Catholic church on Saturday.

At least I have a very fabulous and totally hot man to think about...

I know I'm going to hell, and I don't care.(image)

You must take a look at this

Thu, 17 Jul 2008 01:24:00 +0000

My friend called me today to inform me of her online! video! debut! on The People's Court RAW website. She's a paid actor -- this is not her real deal.

Ok, I'm laughing as I'm writing this. It is the most hilarious, pathetic, and genuinely horrid thing I've seen in a long time.

Take a look:

I especially enjoyed the comments underneath.

And the most hilarious part about all of this? She got paid in swag. Court TV swag. Which consisted of a t-shirt, mug, stickers, and a USED gym bag. Yep. USED. There was stuff in it.

I heart the First Amendment. God Bless America.(image)

And THIS is why I haven't updated my blog for a few weeks.

Wed, 16 Jul 2008 04:43:00 +0000

Big drama.Hello everyone. I hope you are well and enjoying the summer. I haven't posted for a few weeks. I could lie and say I was uninspired, but that would, um... be a lie. The last few weeks have been really strange and I am still struggling to get my head around it all.To wit:PART 1: The Oregon CoastMy friend Shannon and I rented a house in Pacific City, two blocks away from the Pacific Ocean. We could see the ocean from the second story of the house, and listened to the waves and the bells of the buoys in the evening. It was awesome.The weather was delightful -- it was sunny and cool, perfect for walking on the beach, climbing the dunes, enjoying the sunshine. Cooking fabulous meals. Playing cards. Watching movies. A very good time.The last full day we were there, other friends of ours from our AZ grad school days came up to see us and we had a great time grilling sausages, drinking wine, and walking on the beach. IT was really windy that, though -- and it took about a week for my legs to recover from the cuts I got from blowing sand.I shit you not.Beautiful beautiful vacation.At the end of the vacation, we're driving back to Salem, where Shannon lives, and suddenly things began to change...which leads us, friends, to:PART 2: The death of the Green MachineOn our way to Salem from Pacific City, we stopped at a gas station and realized the temperature was about 30 degrees warmer than on the beach. We were hot. We were grumpy. And I had nothing to wear...So we blasted the air conditioning and made it to Shannon's house in good time.When we arrived, Shannon's parents (who have got to be the nicest people on the planet) invited my pooch and I to come in to visit, but I declined because I needed to get home.I got in my car and it started, shook, died.I tried again. Started, shook, smoked, died.Started. Died.Died.Um.Yeah.I called AAA. They came. They towed. The mechanic shook his head and said they couldn't fix it for a few days and it would cost atleast 2k.Blew a gasket apparently.BlewagasketUm.I tried to get a rental car.Salem only has rental cars available for 1 hour on Sat and 1 hour on Sun. I missed the 1 hour on Sat so I had to wait until the 1 hour on Sunday.Shannon's parents let me crash on their couch. So gracious and kind.So, fast forward through agonizing loan applications, car shopping, the selling of the Green Machine, and the purchasing of a new mobile.That's right, friends. My stalwart 1998 very GREEN Toyota Corolla bit the dust. It wasn't worth much more than the 2k it would have cost to fix it.So, I bit the bullet and laid down some cash for a new mobile (shit!). I have a new car. A 2008 Honda Fit.I've never had a new car. It fucking rocks. I feel like a wealthy person. In the modern era. All cool and shit.And I still can't figure out how to drive it. The brakes actually work...So, that's the story with the car. Sucked, but turned out ok in the end.I love me the happy endings...and then,there is the unrelated but very excitingPART 3: Facebook romantic (re)connection?Yeah, I know. Again.But this time it's good...I recently reconnected with a dude I knew a long time ago via Facebook. We emailed, we flirted, we confessed our crushes on each other. Things have gotten really intense, really lovely. He lives somewhere else which blows. But... it's all very exciting, I feel like I'm 12, and we'll see what happens... stay tuned. So, this has been my last 3 weeks in a short nutshell.. throw in working on grants, a new play, seeing out of town visitors, dealing with my irritating family...Hope all is well in your world.--This Single Gal[...]

Weed wackers are annoying

Sat, 21 Jun 2008 19:15:00 +0000

I like to sit here, iced tea in hand.
My yard is a lovely place. Birds, trees, grass, insane dog. It's generally quiet and peaceful which I love after a long day at work.

Because the weather in Seattle is getting nicer, I have noticed my neighbors are trying to catch up on yard work. They are behind in general yard tidiness because of the fucking rain and the fucking cold and the general fuckiness of the spring.
They all use weed wackers. Frequently. For a long time.
And people like to post injuries sustained by weed wackers online. Who are these people?
I hate the weed wacker; mostly because the sound is incredibly annoying, especially when you've got a surburban chorus of them whining away... it will make you crazy, I tell you.
Ahh, the plague of suburban living.
I want a popsicle.

On the Iowa floods, the rebirth of the hedge, and cancer

Wed, 18 Jun 2008 02:34:00 +0000

This last week was a difficult one for many people in Iowa. For the second time in 15 years, the state has suffered floods that are only supposed to happen every 500 years, leaving many people with damaged homes, destroyed crops, and the loss of things important to them. My parents's home did not sustain water damage, but my family has been affected by the floods.One day last week my aunt spent the day sandbagging her small town in eastern Iowa and removing pews from a local church.My brother, the illustrious Fruits, is having his wedding in Iowa City. The RSVPs have been sent to the post office in Cedar Rapids which was flooded.My brother's wedding was to be held at a church in Iowa City which has flood damage. His wedding reception scheduled at a hotel where water has been "lapping at the door," according to Fruits.He has the worst luck. Ever.In addition to my brother's wedding trauma, my family has been affected by the floods in other ways as well.My great grandfather's family came from Telc (in Moravia, now the Czech Republic) and settled Ely, Iowa just outside of Cedar Rapids. Cedar Rapids, as I'm sure you have heard, has been deeply (pun intended!) affected by the flooding. When Grandpa Lou (as we called him) married, he and his wife (Grandma Flo) moved to Cedar Rapids, where they built a house and worked in the Czech area of town. I have seen several news photos online which were taken across the street from their house (where my grandmother lived her whole life and my mother and siblings grew up). It was flooded. The house is about a mile away from the Cedar River.From what I understand, flooded too were (are?) the business Grandpa Lou worked for for many years, parts of the Czech Village, the Czech-Slovak Museum, and much of downtown Cedar Rapids.My grandmother passed away in 1995, and I have been to Cedar Rapids only a few times since then. But, I am saddened by not only the losses suffered by the residents there, but by my family's loss. The loss of the things my great-grandfather's family built, my mother's hometown, and the spaces I spent time in as a child.Really sad.I am also sad today because a good friend of mine (in his mid-40s) was recently diagnosed with stage 3 colon cancer. He is an amazing person and I'm confident he will fight and win, but I was once again reminded of the fragility of life after learning his news yesterday.Carpe diem!So, let's end this post on a positive note, shall we?Several of you have inquired about the current state of the hedge, the lovely monstrosity that graces my front yard. A merry tribe of 15ish chopped that sucker down in March, I was convinced it was dead and lifeless, and now, friends, there has been a rebirth! It still looks hideous, but at least there are some leaves on it. When someone gives me a million dollars to remove the ivy roots, etc., I'll get rid of it for good.Anyone? Anyone?Below are some photos of the current state of the hedge, my front yard, and the onramp to the rat highway -- a.k.a. a wisteria vine which needs to be chopped about 2 times a week so the rats floating around my hood don't use it to get into the roof.And with that I say tra la la. Hope you are having a lovely day.--This Single Gal[...]


Sun, 15 Jun 2008 18:21:00 +0000

I have some sort of home crisis on a daily basis. My furnace is broken, I can't open the window in the bathroom, my hedge is overwhelming my life... you know, these sorts of things. Most of the time the fiascoes are related to my laziness or stubbornness and I am unable to blame Mother Nature, the Universe, God, or my daily diety of choice. I can only laugh and point the finger of blame / shame at myself.

Let me regale you with a current home fiasco which I will dub: The Carrot Soup fiasco.

Because I am scared shitless of my upcoming surgery, I'm on a big "change the diet and get my body ready" kick. I'm finding this bandwagon is hard to jump on this time because I'm in a lot of pain and for me, pain = chocolate. But, I'm trying...

So, I'm cooking more for myself than I have in many years. I subscribed to an organic food delivery service (spud, check them out!) which has helped me eliminate many trips to the grocery store and keeps me focused on eating organic fruits and veggies as the basis for my diet. It rocks.

The other day I started panicking because some of the produce I bought was going bad. I needed to do! something! so I picked up one of my cookbooks and found a recipe for carrot ginger soup. I had all of the ingredients at home (a shocker) so I started whipping up the soup. Everything was going fine (I didn't even chop myself) until it was time to puree.

And then there was a fiasco. Well, multiple, actually.

When I read that I had to transfer hot soup from one vessel to another I knew there was going to be trouble. I just didn't figure how much...

So here I am, feeling like a bad ass for whipping up some carrot soup, and pouring said boiling hot liquid into a blender to puree the damn thing.

I put the lid on. I pushed the puree button.


Insanity! Mayhem!

The soup shot out of the lid and flew all over the wall, the curtains, the ceiling. Of course, I had a hand on top of the lid and, even when the soup was dying to get out of the blender, I kept the hand there, thinking "oh, if I just hold it down, it will calm down."


So there I am, scalding the hell out of my arm watching soup fly everywhere and I didn't turn it off.

Yeah. And my IQ is 156.
No shit.

Well, I don't need to tell you that even with my scalded arm (slathered with aloe from the plant in my office) and the carrot chunks all over my kitchen, I still needed to puree the rest of the soup.

So, rinse, lather, repeat. 3 times. Each time, more scalding. More soup on the walls.


I finally figured out:
1. I shouldn't put so much liquid in the blender
2. I should move my arm
3. I should start on a lower blending speed -- like stir, for example.

The soup turned out tasty and I learned new cooking techniques.


This is a good day

Sun, 08 Jun 2008 21:07:00 +0000

for two reasons:

1. Although I have to cancel my artist residency for the summer because of my pending shoulder surgery (which was rescheduled to Aug 5, by the way), they are transferring my residency to next summer and I get first dibs on the dates. Whoo hoo!

2. I got my period. Phew. I don't think I've ever been happier about that in my whole life. Ever. I was worried because I had been on antibiotics and there was a one night stand and, well... things were used, but I was still worried...

So, it's a happy Sunday even though it is grey, rainy, and 50 degrees (again) in Seattle. I'm wondering if the summer will ever come...

And, I'm wondering if my car is about to explode. I started it up this morning and the thing shook violently. It seemed to run okay, but shit. I can't afford a new car right now...

Oh, one more happy thing... (I know, a surprise from me... get over it) I finally purchased the plane ticket to my brother's wedding. I was freaking out about the cost of the ticket, but I cobbled together a bunch of airline miles from a few different airlines, did some fast talking and I'm flying to Iowa for $150 FIRST CLASS. Yeah, baby. The Single Gal travelling in style. Too bad I'm not going anywhere glamorous...

Another time.

Hope you are having a great weekend.
--The Single Gal(image)

A Dating Story...

Fri, 06 Jun 2008 05:09:00 +0000

Um is that the name of some cheesy show on Lifetime? "A Dating Story?" Oh, no, wait, I'm thinking of "A Wedding Story" or "A Baby Story"... that's right... they don't do stories about pathetic people in their mid-30s lookin' for love.

Oh, I sound bitter and cynical today...

Well, I am.

I've... ummm... had it. Dating story and all.

This was my dating life today:

1. I went out with a lovely chap a few weeks ago. Got an email from him today saying that he met someone else and wanted to pursue a relationship with her. Not me. Great. I hadn't heard from him in awhile, so I assumed that it was going nowhere and I'm not heartbroken about it, but ok... enough already.

2. A colleague offered to set me up with a dude her boyfriend knows. I agreed on the set up. I always agree on the set up. You never know who you are going to meet and I generally love meeting new people. Well, after the email I got from him, I no longer agreed to the set up. (As you probably guessed, it takes a lot for me to turn down a date these days...). I won't bore you with all of the gory email details, but this was the big red flag of "runawaydom". Dig it: In the email, he said that we would have to get together during the week because when he starts to date people, they are on the JV dating team. Once you move to varsity you can go out with him on the weekend.

Are you kidding me?

So, I sent him an email saying thanks but no thanks. Later, dude.

My set up instigating colleague wanted an update today. I told her about the email. She said she had read it (what?) and told him it was a bad call-- turns out he is a pizza delivery guy and works weekend nights.



Bye bye.

3. I was supposed to go to a singles' event tonight. I couldn't bring myself to put on mascara and go whore myself out to a bunch of dudes in their 20s. I hate those things. I hate those things and I hate even more when married or coupled people give you advice on how to find a dating partner. At this point, I feel like I've tried it all and obviously nothing has worked. Well, not permanently, I suppose.

Wow. I'm like vinegar.

Pardon me.

So how about a possible piece of good news?

4. The perhaps semi-decent dating news of the day -- a lovely chap I went out with a few weeks ago asked me out again.

More to come...

Hope you are well. It's still rainy and fucking 50 degrees in Seattle. Will the winter EVER end?

I'm going insane.

-- The Single Gal


I fixed my furnace!

Fri, 30 May 2008 00:36:00 +0000

That's right friends, my furnace is now working.
And I fixed it myself.
How, you may ask?
I cleaned out the inducer valve (using a bent paper clip) and the thing started right up.
(This was a trick the furnace repair man taught me during one of the 4 visits he had to make to fix the fucking thing in the winter)
And this time, the trick worked.
Whoo hoo!(image)

Ok, it's been a bad day

Thu, 29 May 2008 22:48:00 +0000

Wait, have I said that before?

Seems like I only blog when I'm really annoyed at the world or something hilariously bad has happened or there is a calamity to report.

What does that say about me?

So here are the annoying things that happened today:

1. My furnace is broken. Again. I've decided not to fix it until the fall. So there, fucking furnace.
2. I got a parking ticket.
3. I got a notice in the mail that apparently I didn't pay a different parking ticket so now owe $60 for that one...
4. my brother is getting married in Iowa over the summer. I'm excited about the wedding, but am very irritated by my parents' lack of making a commitment about their travel plans. And now plane fares have doubled (since 2 weeks ago) to my lovely midwestern destination.
5. my job is driving me insane. love it normally, but i really need a vacation.
6. found out yesterday that I may have to pay for some of my surgery expenses (due to the car accident) out of pocket due to policty limits, etc. oh, that sucks.
7. I have to mow my lawn.

And speaking of lawn mowing...
here's a good thing that happened...
I started mowing the part of the lawn closest to the curb and, because I waited too long to do it, it was a beast, and my arm hurt, and I had to stop. Doesn't help that it is a fucking mile high revine and i always slip and nearly wipe out and cut my leg off every time...
So the curb lawn was half done.
My neighbor (who I have talked to twice and doesn't seem to like me very much) finished the job for me.
What a swell chap.
I think I'm going to invite he and his family to my next BBQ.
Rock on.
Life is good, just momentarily irritating.
Hope you are well on this fine Thurs.
--This Single Gal(image)

My shoes don't fit my carbon footprint

Tue, 27 May 2008 02:09:00 +0000

Yeah.When I was in 7th grade, I competed in a smarty pants team sport -- Creative Problem Solving. Instead of scoring goals, we won "creative points" working in teams to solve the world's problems.Our team rocked -- a super nerdy scientist-type, a whiz kid literature quoter, the pop culture guru, and me -- the freak artist. We won several competitions (and cool ass multi-tiered trophies), going to state the final year we competed.Oh yeah, we were that cool.The issue we worked with in 7th grade was global warming. I remember being completely repulsed by the deforestation of Brazil by American companies like McDonald's. I was amazed by how the ice shelf was melting, how the food chain has been disrupted, and how people were causing chaos in the natural world.I was amazed, repulsed, and creatively solving the problem. In my team. For a trophy.I have to admit, my concern did not make a huge impact on my life at the time. It took about 20 years to sink in and Al Gore to poke me before I woke up and realized I am contributing to the problem. Not them -- us. Including me. Now, that I am back living in Seattle, and recently moved to the burbs (aka on I-5 waaaaay more than I would like to), I have become very conscious of how my choices impact the environment. I'm trying to make some changes...So, first, I have to ask -- have you calculated your carbon footprint? If not, you can do so here: Carbon Footprint. I filled out the form and was aghast. Truly. And then the Catholic guilt complex started creeping in, and I decided to take a look around and see if there was anything I could do to offset said footprint. I needed to get my sixe 9 shoes back on the 209 size footprint.Some of my attempts:1. Compost -- despite my previous rat infestation and my eternal fear of the rat creature, I have a compost bin in my kitchen which is lined with a Bio Bag. I take the compost out and deposit it in my yard waste bin. The garbage folks pick up the yard waste every other week. In fact, my trash bin is about 1/3 the size as the yard waste and recycle bins. Nice psychological tricks, King County. It's worked on me. 2. Light Bulbs -- I've replaced most of my light bulbs with energy saving ones I bought at Cosco. Many cities offer a coupon to buy energy saving builbs, and IKEA (which you know I love) will recycle burned out bulbs for you. Just like they do with Christmas trees... once it gets closer to the season, I'll regale you with the tale of my friend Karen's IKEA Christmas tree and I-5.3. Lawn mower -- I use a reel mower (push). Exhausting sometimes, especially with a bum arm. And when you don't mow your lawn as much as you should. But it is good exercise, and it cuts the lawn fine... I have a Brill Lexus. It is awesome.4. Lawn -- I do not use chemicals on my lawn. For weeds, I use vinegar and / or salt water (put it on a sunny day and those things will wither away, roots and all!) or my fabulous dandelion popper tool thing. I am in the process (which will take a few years) of replacing the grass with native perennials. I can't wait to never mow the lawn again, and these plants are drought resistance / require less water than grass.5. Cleaning agents -- I use plant - based sponges (no paper towels) and cleaning sprays. I'm currently obsessed with Trader Joe's sponges (which you can compost) as well as their Next to Godliness laundry detergent, cleaner, and dishwashing liquid.6. Bus -- I try to take the bus to work at least once a week. Because I have a million doctor appointments due to the accident, sometimes this is not possible, but I try... 7. No car day -- Once a week, I don't drive. Anywhere. [...]

Bone,Thugs, and Harmony -- A)nother) Tale from A(nother) Single Gal

Sun, 25 May 2008 16:42:00 +0000

So my friend Laura was walking down the street the other day, minding her own business, when a chap approached her.

"Good afternoon, miss."

"Well, I just saw you walking down the street and I thought you were attractive so I.."

"Ok, thanks." And she starts to go.

"Wait, um," he reaches into his pocket.

Laura is thinking one of two things: he is going to stab me to death, or he is going to shoot me to death. She begins to retreat. Rapidly.

"Wait, I have something for you."

"I don't want it. Thanks." She starts walking away.

"I don't normally do this, but, here's my card. Why don't you give me a call? We can go out."

Laura starts to laugh. She takes the card.

IT reads (and this is a quote):

Gentalthug (spelled this way)

his name

his phone number

his MySpace

"You don't usually do this, but you have business cards?"

"Yeah. Well, give me a call."

"I'll do that."

Laura walks away from the Gentalthug. She couldn't have been 50 feet away before he approached another woman.
Whatever works, I suppose... I wonder what would happen if I tried something like that...
Hope you are enjoying the weekend.
--This Single Gal


Single Gal Biceps, part 1

Fri, 23 May 2008 22:29:00 +0000

Hello everyone,I've had a splendid day. And you?I saw my surgeon. Scheduled surgery for my shoulder on June 11.I so do not want to do this, I can't tell you.I curse the woman who hit me with her car last summer.I know it was an accident, but !%#%@#. Okay, I'll say it -- FUCK!With the surgery scheduling comes the panic of -- how am I going to take care of myself? Get around? I cannot drive for 6 weeks. THIS is the time when it super seriously sucks to be single.I tell you.Below is a story my pal Shelby Lee Jenkins (a single gal herself) wrote about developing and using her Single Gal Biceps. My upcoming surgery will help me develop my single gal bicep (singular, I can't use my left arm). Exerpt reprinted here with her permission. Enjoy!-- The Single GalSINGLE GAL BICEPS(c) 2008, Shelby Lee JenkinsI am a single female living in LA and I believe the best part about being single, is having Single Girl Biceps. For those of you who are not single and have no clue what I am talking about, Single Girl Biceps are large upper arm muscles that form and are constantly toned simply because you are single. For example, when you are a Single Girl and you make a trip to the grocery store, you have to bring in the 12 bags of groceries by yourself all at the same time because many trips back and forth from the car to your apartment gets to be annoying and possibly dangerous. Other ways of forming Single Girl Biceps: taking out your own garbage and recycling, lifting the hood of your car to check the oil, mending the upholstery in your car, flapping your arms at the car alarm installers because they broke something in the car during the install, hauling your luggage from the airport shuttle van to the e-ticket check-in kiosk and then lugging that luggage back and forth trying to find the ONE TSA agent who is actually checking baggage rather than standing around staring his shoes. And who can forget doing your laundry at the Laundromat, but first having to park 2 blocks away and carry the heavy laundry basket and soap across 4 lanes of traffic. Nothing like a playing virtual Frogger with dirty clothes. Single Girl Biceps form over time and are a critical part of surviving on your own in the world. But wait, I am getting ahead of myself. Let�??s talk about how one gets these biceps{...}by being a bridesmaid�?�but never a bride. Single Girl Biceps are especially useful when you get bestowed the title of MOH�?��??Maid Of Honor.�?? Do you know what the honor is? When you are the Maid of Honor you get to hold your bouquet in addition to this insanely heavy bridal bouquet. Why does every bride choose the biggest and heaviest bouquets?? BECAUSE SHE IS NOT the one who has to hold it. The second she arrives at the altar she pawns it off to the lady standing next to her. So, here you are Single Girl holding your own flower bouquet, and now her HUGE bouquet and you are also in charge of gracefully bending over with both bouquets and somehow manage to fluff her gown without anyone noticing you do it. And of course, smiling the whole time. [...]Then when the ceremony is over, the bride is so overcome with love and joy she FORGETS to take her bouquet back from you, so now you have to carry two heavy bouquets down the aisle. Which all and all, the two bouquets are usually lighter than that darn bustle you have to tie up after the ceremony. And who can forget that the bridesmaids do more heavy lifting after �??The I Dos�?? have been said�?�you have to help the bride go potty and do that without soiling her 30 pound dress. Also, w[...]

Daisy's photo shoot

Fri, 23 May 2008 00:39:00 +0000

Hi folks,
This has been a super crap crap week in my world.
Hope yours hasn't been as bad as mine.
I don't feel like writing about it, so instead I'll distract you (and myself) with some lovely photos my friend Teresa took at the dog park a few weeks ago. The black dog -- my roommate, the lovely Daisy. The Golden -- Teresa's dog Willow.

(image) (image)

The Tale of A(nother) Single Gal

Tue, 20 May 2008 00:37:00 +0000

My single gal pal Shannon was in a car accident (yeah, I know, but it's not mine, ok?) last week. Here is her recount of the accident:What happened: I was stopped on Layfette Highway. There was a car full of farmworkers in front of me, who had stopped. Honestly, we were waiting a a good 4 cars had passed in that lane...when all of a sudden out of nowhere, I was hit from behind by a semi. The point of impact was the left side of the trunk, which caused the entire trunk to crunch in and all his roofing supplies flew in to my back window-luckily they lodged into the base of the window and the trunk and not my head-then he turned right really fast and hit the front of my car, which caused me to that tore up the entire front...and the back...the tires...and my side of the car. He said he didn't see us stopped and then he couldn't stop in time.I was hit, I said outloud: WHAT THE HECK!? ( swears...not even in a crisis) and then all of a sudden I smelled that horrible smell of burned rubber...and I knew something was very wrong. I looked out the window (I'd been staring at the dashboard) and all I could see was tons of blue and black smoke everywhere. Stupidly, I jumped out of my car and I stared at my car...and I go: "I can't afford this! I can't afford this!" Then, I walked to the front and I was all: "I can't afford this...I can't miss work...I can't miss work..." Then, the semi-truck driver who hit me comes running over to me and he says: "Oh, miss! ARe you okay? " I blurted out-which would become my only audible sentence all morning: "I've never been in an accident before." Anyway, the firemen, paramedics, cops are all there...and you guessed it: Every single one I met I kept saying, "Hi. I've never been in an accident before. He said he was sorry he hit me...he just didn't see me...I've never been in an accident before." Everyone was so nice to me...And the state trooper...bless him...he said, "Miss, I will take care of everything...your car is totalled...but, it's a miracle that you're even alive..." Then they towed my little car away...Then, everyone keeps coming to me, "who's picking you up? We'll wait with you." and "Do you have someone to pick you up?" And I had to say 10 times to all the people...each one..."No. I don't have anyone." Then the cop and the fireman were all, "No one? You don't know anyone?" And I go, "No...I don't have anyone...I'm sorry I'm a loser." Then they all felt bad and they were all, "Oh, you're not a loser! It's just early...I"m sure everyone's at work..." and I go, " wouldn't matter...I'm all alone." Then, they felt really badly...and then I hear everyone saying to each other, "No...she doesn't have anyone to pick her up...don't ask her!" The cop drove me all the way home, even though he was stationed in McMinnville and lives in Sheridan and it was the end of his shift. He also showed me how to use the radar, the laser, the video camera, the lights, the sirens...all in all it was a fun ride back. This Single Gal got a 30 mile ride home from a trooper because she didn't have anyone to pick her up. The next day, I get this email from her (by the way, she knows I'm doing this...). She never curses... ever... and then this...PS: I totally blew up at teh Wells Fargo Financial people who had just refinanced my car loan. The guy kept saying: what do you mean you've never heard of gap insurance? It's common Knowledge in the car field... it's not our fault you didn't know what it was wh[...]

I had waaaaay too much wine.

Sun, 18 May 2008 23:38:00 +0000

I have a story to tell today.
A story of a drunken evening and a dance back into my early 20s.
Believe me, it's rare that I have anything exciting to tell about my personal life these days, so there's fodder for a juicy blog post. And I could get into details and mention scandalous words and see the sitemeter on my blog go nuts.
My father reads my blog. My friends. Colleagues and a million other randoms.
So, I'm having a sort of internal ethical blog debate. How much do I reveal of this incident? Of others? At what cost? To myself? To other people?
Where do we draw the curtains on the false familiarity of cyberspace? Not everyone needs to know everything about everyone else.
As I sat down to write today, I debated and debated about what to write. Although I may have appeared to be in my early 20s last evening, I am not, and with my maturity comes a cautious protectiveness of my privacy.
So, gentle reader, you will not get details, and I will leave my Saturday evening to your imagination.
Doesn't that make it more interesting, anyway?
Hope you have enjoyed your weekend. It's been beautiful in Seattle.
-- The Single Gal(image)

Bouncing things annoy me

Thu, 15 May 2008 01:17:00 +0000

When I was in undergraduate school, I lived across the hall from two lovely chaps -- Paul and Scott. During the course of our freshman year, Paul got weirder, Scott came out, and my roommate, Jenel, and I tried desperately to stay out of their room.

Because it smelled bad.

The chaps never did their laundry, so it mildewed and molded and stunk to high heaven. I remember standing in the middle of their room (they weren't there -- I broke in somehow) with a bottle of Lysol and spraying (the whole thing) in an attempt to cleanse the hallway of the scent.

Um, gross.

Scott and Paul were generally great neighbors. They were kind, funny, and were willing to sit around and play music / talk about art with me. They shared candy. I liked them.

Most of the time.

When he was stressed, Scott used to stand in the hallway between our room and his in his boxers and juggle pins.

This often happened during mid-terms. At night. When procrastination could no longer be a friend. You know the time...

So Scott juggled. He wasn't very good.

And he dropped the pins...






It drove me insane, especially at 3 in the morning -- thud, thud, thud -- while writing a paper of your own.

I blame the pin drops as the source of my current sensitivity to bouncing things. And hearing bouncing things.

I'm currently annoyed out of my gourd by the kids in my 'hood bouncing basketballs at seemingly all times of the day and night.

They remind me too much of the pins.

Apparently, I am a grumpy curmudgeon. Sad. I thought I'd be there about 40 years from now...(image)

A leaf! A leaf! and other random things...

Wed, 14 May 2008 02:19:00 +0000

I spied with my naked (is that the right part of this saying?) eye...
a budding leaf on the hedge in front of my house.
It is a glorious day in hedge land...
The hedge! It regroweth.

In other news...
last week I went out on two dates with two different people.
Both lovely.
Both times I left with a "let's do it again" ending.
And, several days later...
Neither have called.
Yeah, yeah, yeah, whatever.

In other other news...
I haven't slept well for several days. I don't know why.
Perhaps this is why the random things are pouring out today.

In other other other news...
I made some super tasty gluten free muffins today. Ever since I have been gluten free (three years now) my health has improved significantly. But, since I come from an ancestral line of bakers (my family still owns a bakery in Sedlice U Blatne, Czech Republic, thank you very much) and I love me some bread, giving up gluten was not easy. Most of the gluten free products on the market suck the big one. The breads are especially heinous -- gritty and gnasty with an oh so lovely over-quinoa aftertaste.

I decided to give up and try to make my own.

Since I have few cooking / baking skills (apparently I did not inherit them) I have to rely on a recipe. I have found some good gluten free ones on the back of Bob's Red Mill gluten free flours as well as in Clean Eating and Living Without magazines.

And I rely on a little help from my friends... who give me recipes.


The Target ads with the "goodbuy" theme have got to stop.

And so does the 94 children in my neighborhood bouncing basketballs in front of my house at all hours of the day.

Perhaps I need to get out more...
And I need some sleep.(image)


Tue, 13 May 2008 00:58:00 +0000

I found out today that I need surgery on my elbow as well as my shoulder as a result of the lovely car accident from last summer.

The thing that super sucks is that the surgeries cannot be done at the same time.

I've done fairly well maintaining my sanity during this year of hell. But, I have to admit, my attitude really blows right now. And, I'm sure my friends are completely sick of me complaining all of the time.

I need a new topic of conversation....

So, today I will rant on the car accident nightmare and it will be the last post on this topic in May (I promise! -- wait, do I hear applause?)...

Thus, I share this...

Why being injured in a car accident blows chunks:
1. you have to go to the doctor 84 times a week
2. none of your doctors talk to each other so you have to tell them everything everyone else already knows.
3. the insurance company employees are assholes
4. you have to hire a lawyer because of 3
5. you don't get jack for pain and suffering because of 4
6. after the initial accident, people forget you are injured and ask you to go skiing 94 times a month.
7. puts a damper on dating
8. puts a damper on pretty much everything
9. you are in pain constantly
10. you seriously consider amputation
11. you never want to see an US Weekly again
12. you stop playing the "what does he have" game in the waiting room; you know all of the people there.
13. you have to fill out a lot of forms
14. you lose / waste a lot of time dealing with items 1 - 14.

My upcoming surgeries will lay me out for about 6 months total. I am so over the whole thing, I can't tell you.

I think I need to get out my hammer and start nailing things... with my good arm, of course.

Ta da! Done.(image)