Almost there...

Thursday, November 29, 2001

Wow. It's been a good long time since I've written anything here. Sorry for the pause. Between entering the final month before Go Live of my project at work (thus initiating the "All Live Training, All The Time!" phase of my job), and the start of Dickens Fair, I haven't had half a moment to sit at my desk.

Okay, well, I made time for one half a moment on Monday. My grandparents and my mom were asking at Thanksgiving what I wanted for Christmas. Unfortunately I had no idea other than "a big pile of money for a down payment on a house?" Somehow that response didn't get the "Oh, sure, we could do that" that I'd daydreamed about. Oh well. So on Monday I updated my wishlist at Wishlist.com, but unfortunately found that it was now shareware costing $5.99 a year instead of free like it was two weeks ago. Bleh. Oh well. Still, if you close the popup window, it lets you update it. I think I'll decide after Christmas if I want to pay them money to keep my list live. In the meantime, visitors can still access it for free. Still, more than anything on the list (barring the Jacuzzi), I think I'd still rather have a big pile of money to add to the down payment fund. I'm just weird like that.

Well, I'm off to go bond with my sofa. Too many days of training with a bad instructor guide and a broken database make Ammy something something...

Wednesday, November 21, 2001

Add to my list of television moments I'll never forget: Buffy and Spike having knock the house down sex on national television. Wog. On the level of the expicit nature of the sexuality alone, I was flabbergasted. And then it was Buffy and Spike. Hello!

So here's a scene I want to see in an upcoming Buffy/Angel crossover. Angel explains to Buffy how he knocked up Darla and is now a single parent. Buffy says, "Geez, and you thought me having sex with Spike was bad!?"

Tuesday, November 20, 2001

So on Sunday night we were catching up on our last week of Buffy reruns. FX is in the midst of season 3. What caught my attention was the episode entitled "Earshot". This is the one where Buffy ends up touching the blood of a demon and taking on an aspect of the demon as a result - specifically telepathy. She can hear what everyone else is thinking. In the cafeteria the next day she hears someone thinking that they're planning to kill everyone tomorrow.

This is the episode that was not aired until well after it was supposed to originally because of Columbine. Now three years later, it's a really interesting artifact. It proves that what happened at Columbine was not inconceivable. It wasn't out of the realm of normal possibility. Xander even makes a comment about kids shooting up there schools these days and how commonplace it is. Columbine just turned it from "could've been worse" to "Oh God. Someone really did it."

I remember watching it a few months after Columbine. At the time, it didn't get much of a rise out of me. Now, it just raises the hair on the back of my neck. It was a reasonable assumption that it could happen. It was reasonable enough to make comedy out of it. Jonathan with his guns in the school bell tower wasn't the killer. He was just planning to kill himself. It was the cafeteria lady with a box of rat poison, who Xander inadvertantly stumbled across in his quest for Jello. Needless to say, I'm convinced that season 3 was the best season of Buffy out there for a lot of reasons.

Monday, November 19, 2001

At some point last week I made a stop to check out the new Trader Joes in Mtn. View to find that it wasn't open yet. This prompted me to make a stop at The Milk Pail instead. In this one shopping center is an Albertson's and a Safeway, and soon there will be a Trader Joes (all grocery stores), but what was most remarkable was this tiny market in the same complex. They had the most amazing selection of cheeses I've ever seen. There were more than a dozen refrigerator cases just for cheese. This is on top of their amazing selection of fabulous produce. In fact, I originally thought that the Milk Pail was just a produce stand. And then I noticed the cheese. And then I noticed the fabulous selection of British foods any ex-pat would love. And then I noticed all of the other specialties from other countries. And then I noticed the breads. They had the most amazing selection of everything a gourmet, or ex-pat would love. So naturally I picked up a roll of British ginger biscuits. Mmmm. And some fresh snow peas, and some brocolli, and onions, and bok choy. With a big bag of groceries, I handed over my $4.74 and headed home with a fabulous new find under my belt. I know where I'll be doing my grocery shopping before parties from now on.

It's really too bad that the housing right around there is so expensive. With Caltrain and Light Rail both accessible from the same station just behind the markets, this is the sort of location I'd love to live in. It's urban, easily accessible to public transportation, but without being oppressively congested and suffering from the standard urban blights (homelessness, the stench of urine, and general filth).

Friday, November 16, 2001

The quest for making sense of our war on terrorism has finally been settled. Check out the easy Us vs. Them chart to remind us of why we're so much better than they are.

Thursday, November 15, 2001

So last night was a Tempest show at the King's Head Pub in Campbell. I really like the little town of Campbell. It's got small town feel down for a place that has a major freeway running through the center of it. The King's Head is such a great pub. The one thing that detracts is the absolutely painful slowness of the service there. Still, the food is good, once you finally get it. Just don't expect to be served quickly.

Almost single-handedly, I danced myself senseless. Luckily, one fellow Fezziwigger showed up (Patrick) and then there was Ray, who was mightily distracted by the lovely and charming Careen. Hopefully we've managed to convince her to come out to the Plough and take lessons. Also, a charming young lady by the name of Michelle came up after a bit of our dancing and said, "Can you show me how to do your kind of dancing?" After a half hour of basic instruction, she had her basic footwork down (and actually looking really good), and was doing the body of the four hand reel with us. Hopefully we've also convinced her to start coming to the Plough. She had the distinct advantage of already knowing jazz and tap and ballet, so going from a basic pony step to a three was just as easy as pie.

It would've been a really great night with just a couple more dancers. I was disappointed that both Rachel and Paul didn't end up making it. Oh well. Hopefully there will be a next time. The King's Head is such a nice comfortable space that I really appreciate having Tempest there versus at the Plough. And Paul's earlier comment this week about Tempest sounding pretty good again is spot on. They've been struggling through changes in their line-up for a year or so now, but the new band members are settling in and the show is start to have a lot of the old zing. The first set was a little slow and not particularly danceable, but the second set completely rocked. Between some improv single reels and polka-ing to death with Patrick, I didn't have anything left for the death jig that they usually end with. Bouncy bouncy fun fun fun.

In other news, Tigger got a blood test back yesterday. Her diabetes is in remission. She isn't taking insulin, and her blood glucose is normal. Her liver and kidney function is also normal. She's got a lump between her shoulder blades that is a reaction to the needle sticks for the insulin she was taking, but the doctor isn't concerned and thinks it will get better on it's own in a week or so. Dr. Pederson prescribed a appetite stimulant on Sunday, and she's been eating of her own free will since Monday. I think she's on the road to a longer happy life. Thank goodness. I just wasn't quite ready to lose her yet. Maybe I'll get a couple more years with her.

You know, I'm always frustrated at how little attention is paid to good user interface design, but this just takes the cake. Or possibly your life, if you choose poorly. The item in her right hand is an unexploded bomb. The item in her left hand is a humanitarian food package. And sure, it says in plain english which is which, but they're dropping them in Afghanistan with a native language literacy rate of 31.5%. Sheesh.

Wednesday, November 14, 2001

I'm starting to feel the pressure. I'm not sure I have any free time left for the next six weeks. That's pretty scary. My Meeting Maker calendar looks like someone threw up on it. It's a strange sort of technicolor yawn. I taught my payroll class yesterday and it went well. I left work at a reasonable hour for quite possibly the last time this year, and Rick ended up playing hookie yesterday (hookie being a really strong term since he spent the day taking Tigger back to the vet and generally caring for her), so when I got home at 5:30, we were able to go out shopping together. We've determined that it's time to buy a new mattress. The amazing thing is how completely expensive mattresses are. I went into it thinking we'd be able to a nice mattress for less than a thousand dollars, but after a night of looking, it's looking much closer to $2000. Of course, that is for a good mattress with motion control (so that when Rick moves in the night I don't say things in my half-sleep like, "Why do you want me awake?") and also one that has firm support and a pillow top. We may be able to find a decent one for around $1299, but that's still far more than I was expecting, and it certainly isn't everything we desire like the $2499 Simmons Beautyrest Baleray with memory foam top and 1400 individually wrapped coils. And shopping for a mattress is a total nightmare. Each store has very similar beds, but they each are just slightly different and have a different name. This makes price comparisons next to impossible. Then there's the issue of the salesmen (all men mind you) and their half-educated marketing babble. And they all make it very clear that they want you to hand over your credit card right now and let them make you a deal. It's just kinda spooky. Frankly, we'll probably end up buying from Sleep Train strictly because their sales guy was the least creepy and their return/exchange policy was the best. But let me tell you, after three hours of mattress shopping, I didn't want to buy a mattress at all anymore. Unfortunately, sleeping on our current mattress changed my mind back again. Sigh.

Anyway, so around 11:00 as we were watching Buffy (bad Willow, no bicuit! or girlfriend, or anything. Bad bad Wilow!) we got a knock on the door from our neighbor Scott. Apparently his girlfriend's mom and sister, who live in the apartment above them, are being threatened with a three day notice for eviction from our manager who has apparently lost her mind. She said she's gotten complaints about jumping and noise and that she's going to serve them with notice. Now, it seems to me that a three day notice is awfully extreme for a daytime noise complaint. Especially when the only person who could really make such a complaint would be Scott since he's the one who lives directly downstairs, and he didn't complain. Anyway, I don't know what grounds she's going to come up with, but it scares the crap out of me because the manager never wrote a pet agreement for us, saying to not worry about it. Now she's talking abotu throwing another tenant out becase of having a pet (another story that came out while we were talking about Scott's family's situation). It's all just a little psycho. I'm thinking of contacting Project Sentinel now. It's just a shame. Ever since Janet moved out of the area, the management problems have gotten worse and worse, and her reactions have become really weird and extreme and unhelpful. I'm even more sad now that we didn't at least get to make an offer on the townhouse on Pomeroy. I really wanted to live there. Hopefully something will come up for sale that we like before we get kicked out with three days notice. I just can't believe Janet's doing this during the holiday season. It's really scary and nerve wracking. I do not have the time to move right now.

So anyway, that just adds to my panic about lack of free time. And when I say free time, I mean the kind of time that you spend at home curled up on the sofa with sweetie and kitty enjoying a home cooked meal. Yeah, that kind of time.

Friday, November 09, 2001

Hooray! Tigger ate out of my hand this morning. I think she's going to pull through. She's used up eight of nine lives, but thank goodness she gets all nine. And she's just such a snuggle bunny in the mornings these days. I've been late to work every day this week because I just can't pry myself out of bed when I'm snuggled up with her purring so happily.

Wednesday, November 07, 2001

Can I just say how annoying it is that the Windows Media Player crashes so frequently? It's a Microsoft product, right? On the one hand, I guess I should expect it to crash (made by Microsoft). On the other hand, they have greater access to information about how the operating system is going to interact with the program (made by Microsoft) and therefore it should crash less frequently than third party software. Very annoying.

For those who are still wondering, Tigger is doing a bit better. Her kidneys are functioning somewhat, although not fully. She's on medication for the heart condition, and they're not going to give her more insulin until she's eating regularly. She seems to be controlling her glucose adequately without it since she isn't eating. She's been home with us for the last couple of days. She's still not eating though. They sent her home since she was off the IV to see if maybe she'd start eating again in her familiar homestead. So, for the last three days, we've wrestled her twice a day to send pills and food down her throat. When we get the food in her mouth, she doesn't seem to mind too much and actually swallows it quickly, but it is such a battle to get the food to her mouth. We're using the syringe left over from my wisdom tooth extraction with the tip cut down to allow a greater flow. I fill it up with a mixture of Gerber baby food and CatSip, a special milk for cats. Stirred together and spooned into the syringe for speedy delivery. I keep telling her if she'd just eat, we could avoid most of this wrestling and she'd probably start feeling a lot better. In the meantime, it's really nice to wake up in the early morning and have her jump into bed with me for cuddles. I'm so glad to have her home.

Still, she's headed back to the vet later this week for a glucose test, a kidney function test, and to have her heart listened to. If she's still not eating by then, the vet may prescribe an appetite stimulant. We'll see.

Athena came over for Buffy last night and said she looked just awful. I felt compelled to keep explaining how amazingly great she actually looked, by comparison of course. Buffy was completely amazing. I can't even begin to describe why it was so fabulous. They hit everything. It was funny. It was infectuous. It was shocking in the plot points it brought out. Fabulous. It wasn't just a musical for the sake of doing something different. It was a musical that actually advanced the story. I really think Spike could play Roger in Rent if they decided to do a film version. And I got to watch most of it with a Tigger in my lap. Yay!

Friday, November 02, 2001

So for those who are wondering, Tigger is still in the hospital. She has added kidney failure to her list of ailments and the outlook is not good at all. The new vet, Dr. Pederson, is going to take her off Lasix and see if she gets some kidney function back. If not, she's done for. We should know in the next few days if that's the case. Hopefully she'll start eating again and she'll start feeling better. She hasn't eaten anything of her own free will for over a week now. They finally tried force feeding her liquid food last night on the hope of jump starting her hunger reflex. Everything else has been intravenous for a week and a half now. At least she's breathing better, and the arrythmia seems to be under control with medication. She even purred a little last night when I came in to snuggle her. I sure hope she pulls through this. I keep hearing stories of kitties that have walked right up to death's door, knocked, and then wandered off to live three or more years of happy healthy life with just a little medication. If Tiggs can do that, I really want her to stay. If she can't live a comfortable life though, I have no interest in torturing her. I love her far too much for that.