Tuesday, January 31, 2006

I Need to Start Going to IHOP

Because I'm dying to overhear something like Polly did this morning!

I really think, though, if Polly is going to tell stories that make scalding coffee come out HER nose, she should warn US not to be drinking while reading them. My keyboard is now totally sticky with nose-soda.

(Doesn't that just sound divinely disgusting? Nose-soda?)

Monday, January 30, 2006

I Like to Say "Salsa"

The problem with trying to lose weight is that when the question is, "Would I rather fit in this adorable skirt in six weeks, or would I rather eat these chips and salsa now?" the answer is always, "Chips and salsa. Now."

Thursday, January 26, 2006

Leave a Message at the Beep

My answering machine is very dull. It currently says, in a computery voice, "After tone - record message." This confuses a lot of people because they don't know whom they're calling, but very few people we actually like call our landline -- 90% of the calls are solicitors, wrong numbers, or the dentist reminding us of tomorrow's appointment. Besides, the best way for me to guarantee a power outage is to record an actual outgoing message on the machine. It's a digital one, and when the power goes out the battery back-up saves the MESSAGES but because the machine has wires crossed somewhere deep in its guts, it never, ever saves the outgoing message. If I record a new one, the power will go out within four hours, and continue to go out every single time I try to re-record it. Eventually I just gave up, and the people of Peoria were thankful for the sudden increase in electricity delivery reliability. I'm only doing my part.

In college I loved to put bizarre messages on my machine. I had a friend with a really deep, pimp-type voice record one that said, "You've reached the phone of Eyebrows. She's .... tied up right now, so leave a message at the tone." My mother absolutely hated that one. For a while I had one that said, "Hi! You've reached Eyebrows. I'm actually home, but I'm screening my calls to avoid someone I don't like. Leave a message and if I don't call you back, it was you!" My mother hated that one too, particularly when it took me several hours to get back to her.

Everybody hated our infamous "Dancing Queen" message. My sophomore-year roommate dated a fellow who loved to dance but was really, really bad at it. (I do not say this to be mean; we're both still friends with him and he's a sweet guy. He just could not dance. Spectacularly, epicly could not dance.) Our floor nicknamed her "the Dancing Queen" because he was always flinging her around the floor like a ragdoll while she frantically look for an escape. In retaliation, she nicknamed me "Twinkletoes" and started putting it on everything I owned, like on my film when she dropped it off for me at the developer, or into the heading of my papers when I'd go to the bathroom and leave the document open.

After a while we got bored of these games, and instead recorded an outgoing message with ABBA's "Dancing Queen" in the background. It said something along the lines of, "You've reached the phone of the Dancing Queen and Twinkletoes. We're out dancing the night away, but leave a message and we'll call you back. Thanks - and have a groovy day." I didn't really know there were people who didn't like ABBA -- I know most people are ashamed to admit they like ABBA, but I didn't know there was actual hate. But by recording that message we tapped into an unexpected vein of ABBA-hatred. Everyone who left a message complained about the song in the background. Even our NUN left us a message saying, "God, I hate that song." (Thankfully, God did not see fit to strike our phone with lightning despite our nun's plaintive request.)

So we changed that message to one that said, "Hi, you've reached the room of Eyebrows and Roommate. This is the fridge. The answering machine eloped with the toaster, but if you talk realllllly slow, I'll write down your name and number and stick it to myself with one of these nifty magnets." I thought that was absolutely hilarious, but suddenly we started getting all these calls where people would talk ... really ... slowly. "Hiiiii, Eyyyyyyebrrrrrrrowsssss, thissssss isssss Joooooooesefffffffff ...." For the life of me I couldn't figure out what was going on, because, having recorded the message, I instantly forgot about it, and we had this absolute EPIDEMIC of slow-talkers calling and talking in bad fake slo-mo. It was maddening. It went on for a month. It wasn't until I tried to call my roommate one evening and got the voicemail message that the light dawned and I changed the message to something that didn't instruct everyone to talk slowly.

In retrospect, it's alarming how many people will obey ridiculous instructions as long as they're on an answering machine. It almost makes me want to start a whole new reign of machine-message evil, maybe even use it to further my plot to take over the world.

But no; my neighbors would be annoyed if the power started going out every four hours.

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

New Linkage

Two new links down on the left there:

First, Lee Smith's Law Life blog, by a Peoria attorney about national legal issues, local law and politics, and the life of a lawyer. Meant to add him ages ago but I always have so much trouble messing with my template!

Second, I've finally added one of my favorite local bloggers, Peoria Dad, who writes the Greater Peoria Blog. I prefer to call him P-Daddy (since he's in a band and, well, I don't know, sometimes these lame nicknames just occur). He appears to have dubbed me the furry-eyed one, which gives me alarming mental pictures about eyeballs with hair. Anyway, P-Daddy writes a great blog (and plays for a great band), despite the fact that he cheers for evil, evil sports teams.

Soonish I'll probably have to split my blog links into Peoria blogs and not-Peoria blogs, but rearranging my template nearly always ends badly, so I think I'll wait until I have a couple days off to screw it up without being rushed about it!

Eyebrows Achieves New Levels of Dork

I was at a meeting the other day where someone asked when Easter was this year and, of course, nobody knew.

"Does anybody have a calendar with moon phases?" I asked. "It's the first Sunday after the first full moon after the vernal equinox, so if you had a calendar with moon phases, I can tell you when it is."

There was a silence.

"Or," another woman suggested, "If we had a calendar, we could just LOOK UP THE DATE OF EASTER."

Oh. Yeah. That too.

Saturday, January 21, 2006

The Underfoot Game

Orange Cat has suddenly become a major devotee of the underfoot game so beloved of cats, where, instead of preceding or following you, they run RIGHT UNDER YOUR LEGS as you go whereever you're going in the house.

In the last two days, Orange Cat has caused me 1) to choke on my tea and spill it down my shirtfront while tripping over him (and perhaps suggesting I shouldn't walk and sip tea at the same time, but oh well) and 2) to poke my own eye. HARD. It's still tearing.

Then he acts all miffed that I had the gall to trip on him.

Tuesday, January 17, 2006

Sim-Eyebrows Does Not Like Her Sim-Husband

I picked up a copy of The Sims Complete Collection, since it's really cheap now that Sims2 has come out. I mostly like playing with The Sims in order to build and decorate houses (in other words, "rosebud;!;!;!;!;!;!;!;!"), but since I now have my very own Sims, I decided to make a Sim-Eyebrows and a Sim-Mr. McGee and build them a little house and have them live happily together. So I made a little Sim-me and gave it my personality, and a little Sim-him and gave it his, plunked them down in a starter castle, and made them start chatting and flirting and so forth, so they could get married and all.

Unfortunately, they HATE each other. Every time one interacts with the other, they both get really pissed off.

So sorry, Mr. McGee - The Sims doesn't think we're compatible. Sim-me really can't stand Sim-you, and Sim-you really needs to stop trying to put the moves on Sim-me if Sim-you wants to stop getting sim-slapped!

Tuesday, January 10, 2006

Not the Brightest Bulbs in the Box

You give the yard two sixty degree days in mid-January, and suddenly everybody thinks it's spring. I have a whole bed of bulbs that's decided January 7 was an EXCELLENT day to emerge from underground. The shoots are 3" high on some of them, so I've been out mulching madly in the cold to try to save at least a FEW of these Alliums and Quamashes from their own enthusiasm. Morons.

In the meantime, the squirrels have dug up all my crocuses. I keep trying to "naturalize" crocuses - that is, plant them in among the lawn grass. You get a pretty crocus-y lawn in February or March, and they die back in time for mowing so you can just mow over them. This year I tried multiple methods of planting them to foil the squirrels, but the squirrels seem to have outwitted them all, and my front lawn has a variety of squirrel excavation projects underway. Not only will I not have crocuses, but I'm going to be filling divets and reseeding abused lawncover come spring.

Still, it's good to know that my yard is as eager for spring as I am, trying valiantly to bloom in the second week of January and get nature's springtime orgy underway.

Wednesday, January 04, 2006

That Poor Lilac!

Mr. McGee, looking out at the lilac bush: "I should really prune that bush while it's defenestrated."

Eyebrows, confused, looking up from her work: "While it's being pushed out of an upper-story window?"

Mr. McGee: "Um ... defoliated."

Who Knew We'd Miss Trans Fats?

Back from the holiday extravaganza, wherein I caught a virus from my 22-month-old cousin-niece, so I'm still a little draggy and not very bloggy.

My husband was eating some packaged cookies while watching the bowl games, and suddenly he demands, "What the heck did they do to my cookies?"

Took out the trans fat, I told him.

I tasted one. Blech. I don't like store-bought cookies to begin with, but blech blech blech. They taste not just like cardboard, but like particularly STALE cardboard. Ditto our transfat-free snack foods. Stale and icky. Now instead of a tasty salt delivery system, they're just a stale, bland salt delivery system.

So transfat, I miss you. I only ate you a couple times a month, since we mostly cook from scratch, but you really made snack food taste a lot better. It's really too bad you kill people, because you taste just ever so good in food made entirely of chemicals and, frankly, the pesticides, heavy metals, endocrine disrupters, carcinogens, and other assorted toxins in my favorite snack foods are likely to do me in a lot sooner than you will, trans fat. And you just taste a lot better than they do.