Thursday, February 25, 2010

Briefosity (If That's Possible)

I don't have much profundity. Nothing to expound upon. So here are some sound bites running through my head:

I still love my job with no end to the honey moon in site. It took Big Ol' Financial Corp about 16 years to kill the love. I'd say that bodes pretty well for me.

Pokemon Boy is doing well. No tics in sight. His anxiety over his advanced math class seems to be gone. Pretty normal school days now. Lil'Bro is right on track. He's starting to read little books to me. They've both adjusted to the schedule forced upon us by my new out-of-the-house job. Pokemon Boy has recently told me on two separate occasions that he's glad I'm raising him. Not sure where that is coming from but I'll take it!

We've had some big scares with aunts and uncles. I'm "of a certain age" now where the generation before me has big scary medical things. I won't go in to details here as I think it's pretty private stuff. But lots of loved ones are on my prayer list for health issues.

A very sad and broken man flew a single engine plane into a 7 story corporate building in Austin a week ago today. It was 10am which means all the businesses were in full swing. Somehow, only one person - aside from the pilot - was killed. That's one person too many. But let's be honest - it's a complete and utter miracle that it wasn't a blood bath. Lots of stories like my good friend's step-dad. He should have been in that building. But he randomly stopped for a haircut that morning. A sad and (in my humble opinion) disgusting note is that some skeevy lawyer for the widow of the one victim is suing the wife of the dead pilot. Some ridiculous nonsense about how she should have known and warned authorities. Unless he told her his plans and she didn't act? I don't know what person in this world would EVER think their spouse - no matter how disturbed - could do something like this. I may have a very uninformed limited view. But this lawyer needs to really step out of himself and watch his press release. He needs to see it like the rest of us do. It's disgusting and I hope the judge tosses it out the window. The lawyer with it.

Oh my GOODness, I love the Olympics. I'm so sad for the family of the guy that died on his last practice run on the luge. That was horrific. But I am SO angry at NBC. The night of the opening ceremony, I tuned in early for all the pre-glitz stuff. With my 9 and 6 yr olds watching, they open by showing the video of the poor kid flying off the luge track, hitting the pole and basically dying right there. I watched thinking, "They can't be showing this!" At 6:30pm central, no less. Lil'Bro watched, froze, and said, "Did he just die?" Are you kidding me?!!! Did anyone at NBC consider the emotional impact to their viewers? Did they consider his family's wishes? The Olympic broadcast later made a point of stating they would NOT show the video. But NBC had already done it. And I'd like to shake the snot out of whomever thought that was a good choice for dinner time viewing. Brainless gits.

But aside from the brainless gits, how MUCH do I love curling? And how MUCH do I love speed skating? While curling is completely cerebral and relaxing with only moments of tension as I watch the stone slowly make its way down the ice, speed skating is really keeping my blood pressure at deadly levels! Oh my goodness! As soon as they start, my fists are up under my chin and my head is going further and further back. I can barely breathe until they're done!

I will be happy to watch Heroes again once the Olympics are done. I miss my Peter Petrelli.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Valentine Schmalentine

I've never been a fan of Valentine's Day. It is one of those holidays that is usually only good if you have deluded yourself that you're "in love" as I did about every 4 seconds in high school. Back then, I'd send a gazillion carnations in hopes that maybe ONE would come my way that I wasn't expecting. Or would come my way, PERIOD. So in the early days of emotional delusion and low self esteem, it was a yearly study in shattered hopes.

When I got older, I saw it as a waste of money. Why flowers would suddenly rocket in price for the week before was insane to me. It seemed like a crazy waste. When I worked in a local rock club in Boston, that day saw pretty much the same losers getting drunk and hitting on anything breathing. And the same girls crying in the bathroom. Although, thinking about it, that was really a nightly repeating event. But it was more dramatic on Valentine's day.

When I was happily married, neither of us were big on the holiday. We liked to waste money, don't get me wrong. But not because some holiday told us to. So we usually just bought some extra chocolate to gorge on and treated it as just another day.

The last Valentine's Day as a married person was normally uneventful. Unfortunately, in my post-divorce digging, I found that beaucoup of my own dollars had been spent to send his girl thing flowers from the most expensive florist in Boston. So apparently, Valentine's Day is exciting when you're sneaking around and using someone else's money.

You can see how my history (especially the recent history) has created a perpetual disgusted smirk at the mention of the holiday.

Now, when I get a hold of myself and shake off the cynicism and bitterness, I actually like this holiday. And I'll tell you why. Because of relationships and marriages of people in my life that are truly committed for the long haul. They are amazingly in love. They plow through the hard times. They work hard so that any fractures in their relationship are fixed and the foundation stays whole. None of them are perfect and they don't have delusions that they ever will be. But their commitment is rock solid. A sad rarity in today's world - especially the western world.

This week, many Facebookers are posting a status akin to the following: "To celebrate Valentines Day, change your profile picture to you and your spouse/significant other and make sure to tell how long you've been together! Copy and paste this to your profile. [Significant Other] and I have been together for xx wonderful years!"

The first one I saw was my cousin who has been married 22 years. I loved it and hated it all at once. I thought of all the snarky responses I could put. Like a picture of The Ex and his girl thing saying they'd been together for 4 years. My anger is a nasty little beast.

But as I saw more and more of them, I realized, wow. I should be excited and supportive of all of these people who are working to shatter the statistics.

One that particularly thrilled me is my wonderful aunt Brenda. The picture of her and awesome uncle Larry stated they'd been together for 36 years. What is especially encouraging here is that Brenda lived the heart ache of divorce as a young mom. God sent her Larry. He has been the most wonderful uncle. He has been the best dad to my cousins. He has been the most fabulous husband to my aunt. I forget that this was Brenda's second marriage. Because God sent the perfect man to her and seems to have wiped all the awful memories from the general collective memory.

So when the demise of my marriage began, Brenda was one of the people I turned to. And during some of the most painful heart ache - the kind where you actually start thinking you won't physically survive the pain? I would sit there and tell God, "OK...I can wait. I know you'll see me my 'Larry' some day."

My new office mate was laughing with me yesterday. I was telling her how I wrestle with being happy for everyone on this holiday and being a total snarky bitch about it. She said, you know, some day, you'll have that guy God sent and you'll be sitting right there in that chair going, "I can't believe I actually hated Valentine's Day!" She said she can't wait for that day so she can tease me mercilessly. HA!

So I'm snarky and cynical still. I enjoy small periods of that. But in all honesty, I am very very happy for the real love stories out there. And there are a TON. Happy Valentine's Day to all of my friends who have been blessed with real love.

Oh, and you want to see my current Facebook status picture? The response to the whole "post your wonderful picture" thing? Here it is:Caption: "To celebrate Valentines Day, change your profile picture to you and your spouse/significant other and make sure to tell how long you've been together! Copy and paste this to your profile. Clive and I have secretly been together for YEARS! Here I am crashing his photo shoot for the King Arthur movie back in 2004. Oh those were heady times!"

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Goodbye Idol

Well, David Pittman is out. But that's ok. He did himself proud.

Sunday, February 07, 2010

American Idol 2010

I haven't had time to watch American Idol this season. I generally don't like the initial auditions as I think there is a huge level of disgusting exploitation of some very sad and needy people. I can't imagine how I'd feel if I watched one of my kids get reamed by those initial shows.

Having said that, every now and then, the producers get it right by focusing on someone exceptional. A friend turned me on to the fact that a kid with Tourette's made it through to Hollywood. Tonight, I finally had the time to Google it and found some video of his audition.

If you missed it, Dave Pittman wow'd the judges at the Dallas auditions. Whether or not he has Tourette's, he's good. Now, I just hope he's judged fairly and doesn't get voted through out of pity.

The point they keep making is that his tics totally disappear when he sings. This is very common, actually. I wish I could figure out the brain. But it seems that when most folks with TS are focused on something they love, the tics are minimized or disappear altogether. In the video, I do see some facial tics when he's singing. But they are minimized significantly.

His facial tics and clearing of the throat give you a good idea of how Pokemon Boy can look at times.

I love seeing people with Tourette's have a good shake in the media. Dave seems like a good kid. He's talented. He's also giving a good face to Tourette's. I hope he does well.

Saturday, February 06, 2010

The Job Honeymoon

Oh my goodness. I have no time any more. I mean, I have no time to sit and blog the way I used to. Where I can put together some funny and well thought out missive about whatever was on my mind that day. I can barely remember my name. Let me go see what my last entry was and try to update you. What a boring blog. Updates. Meh.

Oh dear. Almost a month.

I still love my job. It's been almost 2 months now. My boss has been cracking up at my over-the-top "I'm so happy to have a job" attitude. Once, we were having a discussion in my office with BossMan and AwesomeTrainerLady. The discussion started kind of hinting at some upcoming stressful times. He looked at me for my reaction. After a pause, I shot both hands up in the air and yelled, "WOO HOO!!! I HAVE A JOB!!!" He cracked up.

I admit, the honey moon is coming to a close. But it's still early in the marriage and I'm still in love. That's my allegory. Sue me.

So far, nothing has changed my opinion that I'm part of a team made up of cream-o-the-crop talent. It's a heads-down kind of place that somehow gets all the work done in only 8 hrs a day. And as I walk the halls, I know not every group is like that. So I appreciate the lack of chit chat from my group and the commitment to getting it done. They're kind, generous with their time and knowledge, funny and can work circles around some of their peers.

Don't get me wrong, there are moments where we exchange stories and get to know each other. But we "git 'er done" in our group. And I'm totally psyched to be part of that. Being able to work for two people that you really respect is awesome, too. The AwesomeTrainerLady is tops, too. Not only am I learning from someone who is awesome at her job, but I'm making a very cool friend there, too.

So right now, it's all good.

Oh! And get THIS - wanna talk about God rockin' more favors! Since I only worked part of December, my first paycheck on Jan 1st was only a partial. So I still didn't know exactly how much I was going to clear after taxes and benefits, etc. I had an estimate in my head based on how most of my last paychecks had gone for...oh...say...22 years. I took the salary amount and took away a third. So I was trying to make a budget based on a much smaller amount than I'm used to. No matter how I cut things, I was still in the red. I was starting to look at cutting out some things I was not going to easily let go of. I was a bit stressed because I thought, man, how will I ever save up an emergency account if I can only put away a teeny bit every month (IF THAT)?!

So at some point, when it really started eating at me too much, I said, "OK God. I really need your help with this. I need you to make this money work for me. Somehow make this amount work for me." And then I let it go. Not perfectly, mind you. I fretted here and there about it. But for the month of January, I pretty much let it go. So on Feb 1st, my first full paycheck went into my bank account. It was $800 more than I had hoped! I mean, SERIOUSLY?! How much does that rock? I sat there at my computer looking at it going, "God you really do ROCK. Thank you SO much!!!!"

And then, I paid a bunch of bills yesterday. I got ready to pay my expensive Cobra coverage (until my new work coverage kicks in on April 1st). I went to the Cobra site ready to pay the $400 and change. I pulled up the site and it said I was paid until March 31st. This is an awesome fluke of timing due to paying full price and when the boys' coverage was moved over to the new plan. So I didn't have to pay this month!!! I might actually put some into savings this month!

It really does blow my mind how much God cares about the little things. I never grew up thinking God was interested in the day to day minutiae of our lives. I mean, with all the global issues around, you kind of think your piddly concerns aren't worthy of his attention. I'm so glad God sent some people to me back in 2005 to kind of set me straight on that point. So yah, there is some really huge global stuff going on right now. And trust me - I pray for that. But I love that my God will listen to my piddly stuff. And he'll take the time to help me with it even while he's keeping people alive in the rubble of an earthquake. He's good like that.