303 - Woot!

My counter is about to pass 10,000! Just didn't want it to go unnoticed. :)

Things are good, but hectic. Final stages of planning the Alaskan cruise. Busy time of the month at work. Lots of thinking. Not much blogging. Sorry...


302 - Freeway

I seem to have fallen under a freeway curse. I was going to pick Bob up from the airport on Friday... left work at 1 pm, should have taken about 20 minutes to get there, his flight was going to land at 1:30. First there is a funeral procession preventing me from getting to the freeway. No problem, I respect that... I can wait a couple of minutes. It took 10. This is a four lane road they've blocked for 10 minutes, my respect has a 3 minute time limit. It's 1:15 now, and his flight is actually early. Awesome! But also... crap!

My tank was low, so I stopped and got gas. And thank God I did...

I get on the freeway and traffic slows to 12 mph... 5 mph... 2 mph... soon we're going nowhere. We creep up a foot at a time for 40 minutes. I see a cop on a motorcycle go flying by us on the shoulder so I'm thinking eventually they'll clear the accident and we'll start to move, but Texas is so frickin' flat that I can't see anything but the ass of the truck in front of me. I decide to get out of the 'fast lane' and into the slow lane so I can get off the freeway at the next exit and take an alternate route (one that I hope no one else is thinking of). I put my signal on... a mistake, because it lets people know you want over... It took me another 45 minutes to get from one exit to the next. Our exits aren't that far apart... 1/2 a mile, maybe 3/4 of a mile? At the end I drove on the shoulder because the exit was within my sights and I was about to have a panic attack, took me a minute... had I sat in traffic it would have taken me 15. I also had to pee. It wasn't at that painful brace-your-feet-against-the-floorboard stage yet, but that feeling of being trapped always makes me freak out.

When we evacuated for Rita - the hurricane that didn't even hit our area - it took us 18 hours to get to Bonham, Texas... that's a 6-1/2 hour drive under normal circumstances. We sat on the road in gridlock for 18 hours. No way to get off the freeway, nowhere to go, no bathroom, no food except what you had in your car. We let the cats out to attempt to use the litterbox once, but they wouldn't go... they held it the whole time. My cat almost died... he had diabetes and got overheated because the A/C doesn't work so well when you're not moving. It took me almost a year not to freak out when I saw brake lights ahead of me. This brought it all back. I'm sure the people next to me thought I was crazy because I was yelling at God to get me off the fucking freeway... not in a minute... not soon... NOW.

So I finally got off the freeway and took another route. I stopped by a convenience store to use the facilities and get a soda for me and some water for Bob (neither of us had eaten lunch... was planning to do that after I got Bob... it is almost 3 pm at this point, and Bob has been sitting outside the airport for an hour so I was sure he was thirsty). I managed to choose the right direction on Beltway 8, and I was at the airport in 15 minutes.

On the way back, traffic was backed up on the southbound side, but I was able to get off the freeway before it became gridlock. No way was I going to go through that again.

Turns out, an 18-wheeler hopped the concrete divider and they shut the northbound lanes down completely, the southbound lanes were funneled down to one lane. It took me two hours to make the trip north. I have a 6-speed... my clutch foot was NOT happy. Luckily when I saw Bob, all the stress and frustration and panic melted away... When we went out later I made him drive... Well... made sounds like I forced him, he's a car guy, the fact that he got to drive Trixie actually made him pretty smiley. So it was a good weekend. Bittersweet, because it's over now and it'll be another week before I see him. I think I'm going to end up in Austin next weekend. The following weekend we're planning to go to a friend's family's picnic, so I'll be travelling a lot. Keeps things exciting. =)

Oh, and last night when I was on my way to a friend's house to watch movies, I was on the freeway and I saw the brake lights... I got off the freeway... I don't like the freeway much... hate it actually...


301 - Lame... a blog-rant about how my parents suck

So I figured out why I am the queen of lame excuses. The "I don't feel well"s and the "I'm too tired"s and the "Maybe next time"s. It all comes from my parents.

I can't tell you how disappointed I am in them right now.

I gave them ample notice that we were going to the gun range, but they couldn't be bothered to pull their heads out of their asses and show up.

Saturday I call them to let them know we're headed to lunch and give them and ETA on the gun range. Dad says to let him know well ahead of time when we're headed that way. Didn't I just do that? I basically let him know, through simple math, that in about an hour, we were headed to the range.

Less than a minute later I get a phone call. Mom. And she's coming at me with THE PANIC. "Krit?!? I don't think we're gonna be able to make it to the gun range at 12:30... we're in Texas City... blah-blah Uncle Robert... blah-blah shoes... blah-blah (repeat with variations until you run out of breath)." I feel my butt clenching. Well, we're going to go ahead and be there at 1 (as planned), you just get there when you get there. "I can't hear you." I repeat myself. "I'm... J... I can't understand her... Here Krit... talk to your daddy." I repeat it to dad. He says okay. I bury my face in Bob's shoulder and whine. He says tells me it's okay... he'll get out of the way if he sees the gun heading in my mom's direction. Smart boy.

After lunch I call to tell them we're now on our way to a store to get hearing protection and we'll probably be at the gun range around 1:15... Cool right? They're running behind... we're running behind... Dad says, "Listen... uh... we're not going to make it this time... we just sat down to eat and they haven't brought our food to us yet, and I still have to go to the house, so we wouldn't be able to make it in time. But listen -- you guys maybe want to watch a movie later?"


I was pissed. They bugged me and bugged me and bugged me to meet the asshole I dated a few years ago. A guy that even during our best moments I never liked as much as I like Bob (and he never treated me even 1/100th as well... well, most of you read the 'fuck you' letter already so you know). Here's Bob, actually willing to meet them, and they can't get their shit together. So I had a few thoughts on how they might have done better:

Suggestion 1: If you know you're meeting someone at 1 pm. Don't go way the hell out of the area to do your non-emergency shopping. And don't pretend it's an emergency when it isn't. They're shoes. In fact, maybe you could shop another day. Or here's a third possibility... go shopping after you go to the gun range. You bitch about other people being inconsiderate? Hello pot. Meet the frickin' kettle in the mirror.

Suggestion 2: If you're running behind, don't go to a sit-down restaurant... grab a fucking hamburger. You still get to eat, but it's quicker. It's kind of the considerate thing to do, since we made plans and all. You don't actually have OCD, so you can be a little flexible sometimes.

Suggestion 3: If you're deadset on running errands, stick the damn guns in the trunk... like we did.

Suggestion 4: If you're going to offer lame excuses, don't come back with a different lame excuse later on. It makes me irritable.

On Sunday I show them the target and ask if they want to guess what I was thinking about when I was shooting at it. Mom says, "I just couldn't do it, it's too hot outside and I just couldn't do it." Interesting. That wasn't your original excuse... soooooo maybe you intentionally lolligagged so you couldn't make it and you think I won't put that together... well I've done that before, so now that you mention it... I recognize it. Plus, it's one of your MO's, that and "I don't feel good." Apple don't fall far from the tree, and now I see it for what it is. Then she says, "And your daddy wanted to go, but he was afraid he would be the odd man out." Alrighty. He knows me. He knows Sue Beth. Rusty has never met a stranger. Bob is a great guy, one that he wants to meet. Aaaaaaaaand shooting's kind of a solo sport that you like doing and pester me all the time about. What. The. Hell. ?.

Maybe I'm being too hard on them. I don't know. Am I? I feel like they let me down, like they aren't taking this seriously. Worse, if Bob was supposed to have met up with us, and he offered up those same excuses, mom would take it as a slight and never, ever, ever forget it (I'm not kidding, she's still holding a grudge over a passing comment one of my friends made FIFTEEN YEARS AGO). On the other hand, I've met 90% of Bob's family now. Met his mom, his son, and a few cousins on Friday. (and by the way, they like me... squee!) His son is a cool kid. Came up and started telling me about the bearded dragon in the hallway and then showing us random facts in this book he got. Then he'd pop his head in from time to time just to see what was happening.

I told Bob I was going to rip my parent's a new one, and he said, "There's always next weekend." Kinda deflated my anger bubble... But I'm not feeling charitable toward them. They blew it, so I'm not going out of my way for their benefit. If Bob wants to push the issue I'll do it, but otherwise... (sorry Ms. A), fuck 'em.

I apologize if I'm a little wound up at the moment, my teeth hurt something fierce and it's making me very, very cranky. I almost took out half the drivers on the bypass on my way home because I wanted them to get the hell out of my damn way (according to my friend anyway). New tray today, so pretty much every tooth in my mouth hurts except for one canine and my wisdom teeth. I took a Motrin, but it hasn't quite dulled the pain... Not looking forward to taking them out tomorrow. It's always worst after I've slept in them the first night... feels like I'm about to rip some teeth out, and putting them back on feels pretty rotten too. I hope it's worth it when I'm done, cuz right now I'm not so sure...


300 - It speaks for itself

Don't mess with me beyotches... I'll take you down!

I did alright with my .38. I really rocked it out with Bob's 9 mm though... that grouping near the bullseye is the 9. Woot! I want me one...


299 - The mania of nothing

It's been a long time since I've gone on a real date... I'm actually a little nervous. Which is ridiculous. Because this isn't our first date, it's just that we're going to a nice restaurant... alone... so... But I took my shower and did my hair, slapped on my face and even accessorized. I never accessorize... what the hell is wrong with me??? I'm not even wearing sneakers... nope -- I have on real shoes.

Now I'm waiting. I don't know when he's coming to pick me up exactly. It's like waiting for my birthday party... the mania of nothing.

I bought cake balls for dessert. There's a local sweet shop around the corner, they claim to sell other stuff, but mostly they sell cake balls. Twenty-one flavors of cake balls. I like saying cake balls. I've never had them before, but they look like the best part of cake... a ball of cake surrounded by chocolate. Mmmm... I got red velvet, pretzel, chocolate, almond and strawberry. If Bob is lucky he might even get one.

Tomorrow a group of us are going to a rum distillery. Didn't realize there was one nearby, but there is. Then after lunch it's off to the gun range, where my dad, and maybe my mom, are going to join us. Have I told you my boy ain't scared-a-nuttin'? Can you imagine... meeting my dad for the first time, when my dad has a gun in his hand? Actually I think it's probably a great place for me to introduce them... they both love guns, it's like their 'thing', so I figure they'll be all happy and have lots to talk about. And I'll get to practice my skills. It's been a while since I've shot my gun and I'm probably rusty. I like to do it, but last time, at a certain point I started to freak out a little because of the flames that blast out from the cylinder when you fire... afraid it's going to explode in my hand or something, and it makes me nervous. Hopefully I can get past that and go back to enjoying it like I used to.

Anyhoo... lots of stuff going on, but not much of it that I want to blog about at the moment so.... I'm gonna go find something else to do... Hope everyone has a great weekend!


298 - Wordless Wednesday

Except I can't not say something... (nice use of a double negative huh? next up - a triple!)

This is my neighbor. When I look out my window at work (admittedly, it's a nice perk) I have a pretty nice view... and this guy has been taunting me for the past couple of days. Yesterday I got him with my cell phone, running from me like I'm paparazzi... He's cute. Cuz he's not eating my house. If he were eating my house like he's chomping away at that pinecone I'd pop him between those adorable little eyes and eat him for dinner...

Puppies and rainbows!

Another perk is that we have to take pictures of things at work, so we have a nifty camera with a decent zoom. So today I GOT HIM. Muahahaha...

These are yesterday's cell phone photos. Maximum zoon. Have to say though, loving the clarity, and the sun hit the tree just right so the contrast is pretty cool.

Run squirrely!

The End.


297 - Don't Know What to do

I've been on the go so much lately that it's weird to have... downtime... I didn't do a damn thing yesterday. Well, not outside of the house anyway. I did chores I'd been putting off. Exciting things like dusting, and vacuuming and changing the sheets. That killed about three hours. Oh and I finally cleared the refrigerator of party leftovers. After that I'm not really sure what I did...

Friday I went out to a local bar and watched a friend's band play. Found out it was my neighbor's birthday, and her boyfriend was working all night which left her at the house to celebrate alone. So I got my tab, after 20 excruciating minutes of asking for it... lesson learned, I'll pay as I go at the bar from now on.... and headed to her house with a bottle of wine. Home by 2 am. Very relaxing night, and I had fun... but I find that I miss Bob. A lot. More than I had expected I would, like a physical ache... I'm really, really glad that he didn't take the overseas job, because this distance is already too far. But I'm working within my situation.

Today I've been dealing with some crazy allergies... I feel unmotivated to do ANYTHING. Usually have lunch with mom and dad on Sundays so I don't plan anything, but they went out of town this weekend. So I have been sleeping off and on and I also made a pilgrimage to the grocery store since I haven't been in about 3-4 weeks (except for party supplies). I was miserable. My nose is runny... and then I went to grab a carton of milk, and it was torn open so milk splashed on my face and down the front of my shirt... Good times. I was a happy, happy camper... not only covered in milk but thinking it was probably germy milk that could make me sick if I got it in my mouth... which it did... just a drop... but we saw what happened to Charolotte in Sex and the City... Luckily I seem to have avoided that outcome. I'm sure my fellow shoppers thought I was super sexy with the milk all down the front of my shirt... looked like sweat so I was embarassed but trying not to give a shit because they're all strangers and they mean nothing to me anyway.

I have a friend staying with me for a few days. And Bob is going to try to come down sometime next week. So I think it's good that I got to be lazy for a couple of days, because the pace is about to pick up. I didn't think I'd like that, because I was all about the down time before, but I guess my habits change easily. Now downtime sucks.

God I hope this all made sense... my mind is so not functioning right now... I hate allergies... Hope everyone had a great weekend.


296 - Has it really been a week?

I go away for a few days and when I come back I have more followers... how does that happen? I love it though!

Joan Jett was so much fun. We were pretty close to the stage, and she put on a really good show. She's such a tiny little thing, like a good stiff wind would probably knock her over. Can't be more than five feet tall. Sang all my favorite songs. I screamed my head off. It didn't happen, but when I screamed "WE LOVE YOU JOAN!" I'm gonna pretend she even blew me a kiss. Rowlett was a nice town with lots of water... me likey. What scared me is... I was the one with the sense of direction. When I'M the one you're trusting to get you around town... you are soooooooooooo in trouble... but I did good.

I bonded with my friend's nine year old. Maybe a little too well. I think Stacy was a little sorry she brought me because at one point she was dealing with two nine year olds, and one of them had had a margarita... It was a nice confidence booster because Bob has a nine year old son, and I'm nervous about meeting him. I don't have a lot of experience with kids, and I'm an only child. I usually do okay, but this one is kinda important, you know? That said, the kid loves Harry Potter and his daddy, so we have those two things in common (well, you know what I'm sayin'... I'm not tossing four letter words out there just yet... dangit now I want to change the sentence but it flows so well... buggar, I'm leaving it).

Sunday we made our way to Waco to see the Texas Ranger's Museum. That didn't really float my boat, BUT there was an amazing graveyard just outside that I drooled over. My camera phone irritated me... took this amazing pic of a squirrel sitting on the knot of a tree glaring at me and the phone ate it. If you want really amazing graveyard pics go see Flora Isadora's site (faeries today!), but here's couple of my faves... or at least the ones MY PHONE DIDN'T EAT.

Bob had one hell of a time getting to Austin and got in really, really late, so we basically hooked up Monday and went to this wonderful distillery about an hour outside Austin in Johnson City. He'd planned to go on some bourbon distillery tours when he was in the Kentucky area but got gypped out of them by circumstance, so I went online to see if there was one in Texas and shazam! It is so cool. Garrison Bros. Two guys run it. It's in this picturesque plot of land that I want for my own... God it was nice:

Hummingbird by the eave

And if you like bourbon, it was very tasty. They don't sell the bottles, but they give you a sample. You actually get to taste the mash, the white dog and the final product. I took a couple of sips and gave the rest to Bob... I can drink it and I can appreciate it, but he is the real connosieur.

Then I got to meet some of Bob's family, very nice people, very welcoming. Hung out with them for a couple of hours and he brought me home, all sunburnt and wind ravaged (convertible) but smiling. I'll be honest. I miss the crap out of him already. But it looks like he'll be staying stateside, and better yet, within a reasonable driving distance, so things are managing to work themselves out.

Yesterday I had my 'favorite' exam of the year (happy belated birthday to me) and there were some abnormalities... So for the next month I'm going back so she can keep an eye on things. Doc said not to worry about it. Can't help it. Mom had breast cancer... you say 'lumpy', I worry. I feel like I've been too proud of the girls and I'm being taken down a peg. But that's neither here nor there. It's only been a day and I need to calm the fuck down. I'm going out with friends tonight so that'll keep my mind busy. I'll be fine. I'm sure it's nothing.

Last, but certainly not least... Trixie is back in business. Still some smoke when I park her in the garage but she is like a new car and I'm driving like a lunatic. Bob has a roadster and sort of opened up a whole new sportscar driving reality for me. Downshifting is my new bestest friend... Trixie is certainly pleased and I'm having a blast. Got everything on my list of demands except that I only got one oil change out of it. Well... until Mazda corporate calls me... then we'll see... I'd like five. The manager needs to grow a pair though. I had to call them, which irked me. Then he tells me the service rep was supposed to call me with an update... Um no, a-hole... I asked to speak to the manager... that's you... YOU get to deal with pissed off people like me because this is YOUR service bay. I can't abide that crap. When they brought her around they left running, like I was just going to hop inside and be on my way... I told them to shut her down, the manager was gonna walk me around and show me what they'd done. Bwahahahaa... I really do have this cruel streak in me that I quite enjoy. I just kinda rein it in and only use it on people that deserve it.

OH! Not last! Karma... Almost forgot the karma... There was a lady at work that basically created an issue for me that was the final straw in my decision to step down from management a few months ago. Well... the weekly termination list came out yesterday and her name was at the top of the list. Karma baby. And I almost felt bad for her, except I heard there was some kind of investigation and it ended with security walking her ass out of the building. As Ludacris says (seriously Ms. A, you're going to want to avert your eyes), "Imma tell you one time -- don't fuck with me..." Sigh of contentment goes here X. The world is my oyster and I'm just a nut trying to... hmmm... well... you know what I mean. ;)


295 - I have been remiss

I've had a lot going on. Stepping outside the box really keeps you busy!

So I guess first off... I'm seeing someone. Since we talk for several hours each night, I've been neglecting my blog... and... I'm not really sorry... soooo... sorry for not being sorry but I'm not sorry! LOL He's amaaaaaaaazing and I'm really happy about the way things are going. No one has ever treated me better, and I've never felt so in synch before. He's been in Iraq for the past several months and is slooooooooowly making his way home. But... I will get to see him on Sunday and I'm over the moon about that.

It almost feels too good to be true, but instead of looking at it that way and waiting for the other shoe to drop as I normally would, I'm taking it day by day and looking at it as an 'I can't believe how lucky I am' type of thing... It feels very comfortable to me, not uncertain or scary. I feel like we're pages from the same book, so I'm looking forward to seeing where it goes.

Enough mushy stuff. Stay out of my personal life, nosies... ;)

So... let's see, a friend and I are headed to Dallas on Saturday to see Joan Jett, then Sunday we'll travel to Waco to visit the Texas Ranger's Museum (not the baseball team, the police force) and then she's dropping me off at my... boyfriend's (?) house (sorry, it's a weird word...) and he's bringing me back home on Monday.  So I have a full weekend ahead of me! I've been making good on trying to be more social...

Birthday party was awesome. Had about 30+ people at the house. And then there was a hit and run in front of my house, involving a friend's truck and two of my neighbor's cars. The policeman was a complete a-hole and kept trying to insinuate that my friend backed his truck into my neighbor's car, then... um... came back in my house and just left it there? Then a neighbor mentioned that another car rammed into my friend's truck THREE TIMES and sped off, pushing it into my neighbor's car and sideswiping the other neighbor's car. But they kept saying my friend's truck was in the middle of the street to begin with, and then it got rammed. Bullshit. I thought and thought about it and here's what happened:

My friend parked his truck across the street and down from my house. When the last people left my house at 2, his truck was parked where he left it, and he remained inside my house, talking to me and my friend Debra for the rest of the night. He lives about an hour or so away, so he came with the intention of staying the night and I made the guest bed for him. About 2:15 we heard a series of three engine revs and the screeching of brakes -- but I live next to the main drag so I hear crap like that all the time. 3:15 the cops knock on my door and ask him to step outside.

My friend has a standard. When he parks, he leaves it in neutral and engages the parking brake. If the parking brake wasn't fully functional (1996 lightweight truck) or wasn't fully engaged, the lunatic who hit him would have been able to push him into the street if his wheels were angled out. My neighbor, hearing the noise, looks out the window and YES my friend's truck is indeed in the middle of the street... now... then the lunatic revs his engine and pushes the truck again, repeats it once more and it's pushed into my neighbor's car, then squeezes between the vehicles and flees the scene.

I tried my theory on a cop and he said it sounded plausible except that there would have been more damage to my friend's car. Bullshit. In neutral there doesn't have to be a lot of force exerted to move a truck that size. So we're still ironing that out...

And I'm waiting for a call about my car... my Trixie... Took her to get an oil change last night and some a-hole spilled oil ALL OVER everything under the hood. No one bothered to tell me though. So I get in my car, I'm headed home and I smell something. I'm thinking the car in front of me is really stinking up the place, until I get to a stoplight and see that smoke is coming from under my hood. I figured maybe it was starting to overheat, because she was driving fine... well, there was a moment when I felt my heart drop to my toes because Trixie might have been on fire, but the smoke was light grey and not black so I decided that (probably) wasn't the case. My house was only 3-5 minutes further up the road so I rolled the windows down, turned the A/C off and cranked the heater to draw heat off the engine. Temp gauge was fine though...

Get home, park in the garage, all of a sudden there is smoke pouring in through my vents and my garage is smokey. That happened in under a minute. So I back out... in case she did catch on fire I didn't want to burn the house down, too. I was LIVID.

Popped the hood. Everything under there looked clean. Too clean. Wasn't nearly that clean when I took her in... Talked to (we'll call him Bob instead of boyfriend...) and he asked if the oil cap was on. I love guys who know things about cars... It was on, but I told him everything looked too clean, and a little greasy. Looked like someone took Armor All and wiped it down. He asked me to look at the belts and hoses, maybe they were frayed and that would explain the burning rubber smell. In the course of looking for those I noticed that there were some metal plates that had little beads of motor oil on them (see below). Think I found the problem....

Long story short, I got up this morning at 5:30... ask me how happy I am about that... and had her towed in. Rode in a tow truck so frickin' hot I melted. Waited at the dealership from 6:15 to 7:00 AM, killing mosquitos and getting rained on, until they opened. They said they'd get it cleaned up. I said, "You're gonna do a lot more than that." and slammed my list on the desk:

1. Clean up the oil. Do not burn it off. Clean it up.
2. Your dealership covers the cost of replacing the defective coolant sensor I requested to have replaced in November
3. Full tank of gas
4. Detail it like it's going out on the showroom floor (no fruity, flowery or spicy deodorizers)
5. Top off the fluids like they should have been in the first place (windshield wiper fluid was about 2/3 full)
6. Make sure nothing else was half-assed while in your service bay
7. Disciplinary action against anyone who was involved in attempting to cover up the spill
8. Mazda pays for all future oil changes
9. Loaner car

When I called to check on things (which I shouldn't have had to do... manager was supposed to call me but he apparently has no balls), they said they're doing everything on the list but they didn't mention items 7 or 8. We'll discuss 'em when I pick Trixie up this afternoon... They just don't know me yet...

So... pics of the catastrophe...

Right under the plastic reservoir, next to the black wire you can see oil.

Suspiciously clean and shiny... that's my rotary engine next to the yellow oil cap. There's a plastic cover that normally goes over it and that pulls air over the engine to help keep things cool.

My garage floor didn't used to have oil on it...

Hope everyone has a great weekend!