Monday, December 29, 2003

From the "People Are Dumb" Files


Swiss Spaghetti Harvest

In what is Boese's all-time favorite Hoax, on April 1, 1957 the British Broadcasting Company (BBC) aired on television a report on the news show Panorama about the bumper spaghetti harvest in southern Switzerland. Viewers watched Swiss farmers pull pasta off spaghetti trees as the show's anchor Richard Dimbleby attributed the bountiful harvest to the mild winter and the disappearance of the spaghetti weevil. He detailed the ins and outs of the life of the spaghetti farmer and anticipated questions about how spaghetti grows on trees. Thousands of people believed the report and called the BBC to inquire about growing their own spaghetti trees to which the BBC replied, "place a sprig of spaghetti in a tin of tomato sauce and hope for the best."

"It [was] a great satirical effect about British society," said Boese. "British society really was like that at that time. The British have a tendency to be a bit insulated and do not know that much about the rest of Europe."

(Courtesy National Geographic's April Fools' Special: History's Hoaxes)

Monday, December 22, 2003

Blargh Again


So I just noticed today that Ofoto is shrinking my photos, and consequently they're not coming out as well as the originals. I shrunk the photos down to 7x10 and 10x7 and the resolution is perfect, but Ofoto is making them something like 4x6, with no way to fix it, and frankly it's pissing me off.

Yet another thing I have to try and remedy. For now anyway, Alex, here is a picture of me. Frankly, by now the makeover has kind of worn off (i.e. I'm due for another eyebrow waxing and my 3-inch roots are kinda ghetto), but I suppose I probably look different from the last time you saw me. I mean, at least I have hair now!

A note about the first set of pics (the cemetery/monastery walk).. You'll probably notice they're a bit bleached out. This is because the flash kept going off, even though it was daylight, and it took me some time to realize it was messing with the quality and vividness of my shots. Then it took me a bit longer to figure out how to turn the flash off. But you'll notice the pictures look better once I did.

Sunday, December 21, 2003

Blargh


After like three days of wrangling and trying to get my photos uploaded (and then discovering the incredibly small image limit on the site where I'd previously had my gallery), I finally conceded and uploaded them all to ofoto.com.

I hadn't wanted to use Ofoto because while trying to view my mom's pics ages ago, I was annoyed at having to register. But it is by far the easiest (as in I can upload all my pics at once) and they apparently will host my billions of pictures.

Fair warning, I have taken a ton of photos. However, if you'd like to see them, they're here.

My mom only has dialup, as well as a Mac from the caveman days, so it took about three hours to get what I had up. I'll put captions up later, when Mom isn't yelling at me about tying up the phone line/racking up her phone bill (no monthly service fee, but a cost of like 20 cents a minute).

Hope you like them.. there are even more to come!

Friday, December 19, 2003

Viva L'Italia


Or something. Between my mom, my little sister, and jet lag, I've had absolutely no opportunity to be online. I fear it's going to be like this for most of my trip, which kind of sucks because I was looking forward to blogging while I'm here.

I got the digital camera, though the damn thing wouldn't work at first. I was a little pissed because I admit one of the highlights of my trip here was getting the camera, and even though my mom swore the camera worked the last time she checked, I didn't believe her because she has a habit of pawning off broken or semi-working things on me. Like the $400 Nikon camera with a broken film loader that she gave me about six years ago that I haven't ever gotten fixed due to lack of money. Or the Cuisinart I lugged back last year that works, but in order for it to work, I need to get a new bowl.

The digital camera seemed to have a major problem, at least the troubleshooting section defined the error I was getting as firmware corruption, so it seemed to me like I was getting another broken camera that I'd have to get fixed. But amazingly, my mom, who has even less fortune with electronics than I do, got it to work.

This was last night, so I have no pictures as of yet, but I have plans to go on some photo hunts, and I'll be creating an Italy folder in my photo gallery. When I get that all set up, I'll be sure to post the link here.

Other than that, nothing terribly interesting has happened. I went to Genoa today with my mom's husband, Angelo, to go to the dentist. It's been four years since I last went, and I had a jagged hole in one of my molars for the longest time. The dentist in Genoa is very much like an American dentist, which is a good thing, and he patched me up in 20 minutes with hardly any drilling and no novacaine.

The great news is that it wasn't really a cavity, as I'd believed, it was just an old filling that had fallen out. He basically cleaned it out a little inside and put a filling in it, and that was that. I'm quite pleased, as you might imagine, to not have this gaping canyon in my tooth anymore, and it feels infinitely better. Plus I didn't have any other cavities that he noticed, which absolutely amazes me, since it's been so long since I last visited a dentist.

I was given some melatonin pills by my mom's best friend, to help me get over the jet lag faster, and though I normally don't buy into that kind of thing, I really am very surprised at how much better I sleep and how much more rested I feel in the morning. I skipped one night because I forgot, and I was really cranky and tired the next day. The two times I did take it, I've felt totally rested, even though last night I only got seven hours of sleep and usually if I get less than ten, I'm not quite as functional as I could be. So yeah, melatonin gets a thumbs-up from me.

And that's about it for now. Hopefully I'll have some pictures soon!

Geile and super+sharp greetings..

Saturday, December 13, 2003

Free Porn, German-Style


I have no idea who this person is, but I received an incredibly long email in German today and since it didn't appear to be your standard spam email, I thought what the hell and I had Babelfish translate it. Most of us know that Babelfish is not infallible and often leaves words untranslated, but in this case, it translated enough for me to get the gist of the message.

And because I find it incredibly amusing as well as totally random, I'm going to post the translated email here. Note: The fellow didn't bother with paragraphs, so I'm adding them to avoid a wall-of-text and to make this more readable.




From: TheCrow63674@aol.com
Date: Sat, 13 Dec 2003 06:19:10 EST
Subject: Re: Schon mal ein schönes Wochenende für DichSipae (Already times a beautiful weekend for DichSipae)
To: alenad@yahoo.com


Hello,

thanks for your answer. I was pleased really very much about it. You see condemned well out and are a super+sharp Mrs. whom I absolutely meeting and geil spoil would like. I will not call these 0190, because it is much too expensive and eh only Abzocke. If you have really large interest to one or more geilen DATES with me, then you give me another telephone number. You can call me in addition, 0171/8886014. I burn on it you now finally geil and something versaut to spoil.

Now you get also ne small geile fantasy of me. I hope both it you and you announce myself as fast as possible again to me, so that we can meet as fast as possible. A little of it and like I our Zusammensein introduce myself, would like to write I you. I may it it you with the hand to the high point bring, may not if you it any longer bear can, because your kitzler zerplatzt soon.

I would like you completely sachte there with the hand to wichsen, as if it would be the cock of a man. I love it, if my tongue slides by your column. I hope you am moved to already have before the Bumsen many high points. Then I would like to fill out your grotte with my large tail, until you get my whole charge. Afterwards you take it again into your geilen mouth and he become again larger. My acorn leaking or with the lips sachte my foreskin moves. Then you must ride on me. Slowly nearly without movement, your muscles to only play let see and to me thereby in the face. Experience, as slowly, nearly too slowly a further high point initiates themselves. Over if I squirt you at your Grottenwaende. Then I would like to stroke you and with you kuscheln, in order to enjoy the aftereffects from the evenly experienced one to.

You play then with my desire donor slackened. You put downward with the head beside me and kiss and mass mean bag. Your legs are opened thereby and you feel half like you the dear juice from your hole run. You discharges of my bag and strokes themselves. You lift your Titten and squeeze her together and dear food you your nipples with your tongue. You make it for you and nearly forgot that I am also still there. You groan ever more violently. My tail becomes also ever harder. Two of your fingers penetrated correctly into your desire center and you yielded themselves. Ever more violently pushes you now already three fingers into your hole. Your pushing movements with the hand changed over now nearly into rooting in your Lustgrotte. I cannot recognize no more which you actually do. I see myself only yours fast in all directions moving hand in your Fotze.

Suddenly it is so far, enormously groaning and your thighs squeezing together experiences you a high point. You open your legs and pull your hand from your Fotze. I am still very excited. My swollen, rigidly put up tail begins to twitch and my hands knows not in which place of your body it to begin is. I catch to you hot and intimately to kiss. Feel you mean strong pistons at your body. It postpones itself between your legs, over the entrance of your column. My hands play with your chests and I kiss your neck. You wind yourself before desire and renewed excitation.

My stand pushes against your Po, you feels it hard and demanding. I slide like automatically into your Fotze. I am deep in you, hardly move me, then some short, sachte however nevertheless firm impacts. Marvelously. But that is to have been everything? No! I slide slowly out. My hands stroke and knead your Pobacken around them thereby a little to hold apart. Again urge at your Poloch, you it wants also, your body relaxes, you wants it to enjoy, wants my rigid tail to feel. I press more firmly, you discharge small cry, but I had overcome the barrier and am no more to be held. I am completely deeply in you in it.

My movements are even and you can hardly still hold itself. I would like to only squirt. But it lasts longer, longer than with the first time you has both hands at your hole and rubs. I ram you mean stands hard and firmly inside and you believe to shatter. I hold you to the sides and consult your body with impacts additionally to me. Will I mean alike to charge into you to thunder. But now is it so far. We come nearly at the same time. I feel as you me your juice against-squirted. Then we go showering together. But before still is us after nature sparkling wine. We pissen ourselves mutually at the whole body on. Afterwards we shower and go back to the bed before exhaustion to fail to us both the legs and we leaving us to the side to fall. We breathe heavily and we stroke ourselves mutually, to we........ Now you are again at the course! I wait now for your reaction and for your next and hopefully positive answer for our first geiles DATE.

Geile and super+sharp greetings
Holger

Thursday, December 11, 2003

Achtung!


As of 9am this morning, I am wiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiired again!


w00t!

Wednesday, December 03, 2003

Bring In December, Bring In the Funk


I had a rant all prepared to post on Monday, but I think I left my disk in the computer at the school library, so I have to see about getting that back. November was an interesting -- albeit highly stressful -- month that thankfully is over, and I'm praying that December is better.

For one, tips last month were horrendous. As in worse than our worst time of year, after Christmas and New Years. This is supposed to be our money-making season, but everyone seems to be holding on to every dollar with an iron fist. It's not even a question of working more shifts; during the week, even on a night shift, people have been making like $12 for the entire night. I could work seven nights a week and still not even come close to coming out even.

So it's been very frustrating, because I have been working hard, working extra, pulling split shifts and BDs (which means I start during day shift and work all the way through until dinner business declines), and still have not had enough money to cover all my bills and rent. I've been at a total loss as to what to do, since there is no such thing around here as a better-paying job for me, and I can't seem to find any way to make some extra cash. I mean, one solution would have been to donate plasma for an extra $200 a month, but they deferred me indefinitely, citing that I may have Mad Cow Disease because of my exchange year in France during high school.

That and the fact that finals are next week, this semester is almost over, and I've been facing the fact that I can't register for classes -- or get any financial aid -- without my measles/mumps/rubella immunization records. I had those shots in 8th grade in San Francisco, and I sent to my old school for them, but they never came.

Stress, stress, stress. It kills me that the sole cause of stress in my life is money. If I had money, even just enough to cover everything, I would be so incredibly less stressed. But around here, it's just beyond impossible to get ahead. My motto lately has been: Alena: Always Getting By, Never Getting Ahead. I've honestly been at my limit as to what I can take with all the stress. I've felt completely drowned in it and there really didn't seem to be any option. It's not like I can work more, or even get another job. Can't donate plasma, can't sell crack, can't become a prostitute. What's a girl to do?

So anyway, the other night, I was lying in bed feeling really swamped and depressed -- I had just accidentally erased my entire hard drive -- and I finally just prayed for help. I prayed hard, poured my heart out, asked for some relief to my financial quagmire, since I do believe I've honestly done all I can do and that there are no options available to me. The odd thing was when I prayed, I felt that someone was listening, and when I finished, I had a real sense of relief.

The next day, I checked the mail before I left for school and I had a satisfyingly thick envelope from my school containing my financial aid/student loan approval package. Everything finally got processed and I'm to get a substantial chunk for both this semester that's ending, and for next. They quoted me a total of $6,675, both financial aid and loan amount for both semester, but I know it's going to be less because I'm currently only half-time. Still, if I get even half of that, it would help me so tremendously.

On top of it, I went to the financial aid office with the envelope to be sure I did everything right on the form they wanted me to return, and I found out that if I get my MMR shots within the week, I can pick up my financial aid check for this semester next week. Next week! It honestly could not be a better time.

I'm going to Italy over the holidays, as I mentioned, which means I'll have to drive up to Pittsburgh to get to the airport. I was very concerned about this, not only because it's been so long since anyone looked at my car that I'm afraid it'll die on the way up there, but also because my car is totally illegal still and I'm petrified to drive, lest I get pulled over and they take my car away. So this financial aid check will mean that I can get my car registered and insured before I leave, and most likely I can also have someone take a look at it and make sure it's running all right.

Before anyone yells at me about misspending my aid, let me point out first that my tuition was paid up front and I have been waiting to be reimbursed. Also, technically, I think I'm allowed to spend my aid on transportation costs. At least, I'm allowed to spend my loan money on things like transportation costs and living expenses, and that, to me, includes maintenance of the vehicle that gets me to school. Unlike my psycho ex, who, amongst other things, used $300 of her student loan money on a down comforter, I don't plan to abuse any of my aid or loan money. I recognize what an absolute gift it is -- thank you taxpayers -- and I plan to use it very wisely. You won't see me buying a car or down comforter or anything like that. I will use it to help me get by and try to save what I don't spend so I have a bit of a financial buffer should anything go wrong.

So, on one hand, I feel a tremendous relief. I still have all the problems looming and no cash in hand, which is why my relief isn't complete. I think also because I don't know exactly how much I'm getting, and that I won't have the loan money until January or so, I'm still a little worried. But my tuition was over $600, plus I spent about $150 on books, so I figure I should get at least that, and if that's the case, that should cover everything I need to cover right now. If it looks like I don't have much left over once I take care of my overdue bills and car stuff, I will put my ticket on hold until I get my loan money. I have until January 17th or something, anyway, and my second round of financial aid should come through around that time.

I'm thankful -- no, extremely grateful -- for this bit of providence. God, the universe, whatever you want to call it, does look out for us and will provide for us if we live good lives and have faith. It's hard sometimes having faith that the universe will provide for you, no matter what, especially when it seems like you're stuck with no way out. However, if you don't have faith, you have nothing.

I leave for Italy on the 15th, and I'll be gone until January 7th. My mom has internet, though, so I'll likely be blogging from the winter storm-swept Mediterranean coast over the holidays and filling you all in on the nothing that happens in Monterosso during this time of the year. :)

Plus I will have my mom's digital camera finally, so I'll be able to take all sorts of pictures.

Sunday, November 30, 2003

Let's Talk About Work, Baby


I think it's been long enough since I last bitched about work, which is probably fortunate for everyone because I'm about to launch into a full-scale rant. November at work has sucked on pretty much every level possible. We have been increasingly busy, which means that everyone has been busting extra ass.

While working more hours might benefit the people who actually receive a decent hourly wage, the servers have been making some of the shittiest tips of the year. So basically we've been working harder and longer for less money. Tell me that doesn't suck ass.

What I don't understand is that this is supposed to be our money season, the holidays. People are out shopping and thinking of family and friends, and they usually are way more generous with their tips. The difference between the holidays and the rest of the year is that during the holidays, usually money flows so well that servers are happy to give away shifts; the rest of the year, people are desperate to pick up whatever they can. I know that the lack of good tips this month isn't just me, since people are still just as desperate.

I understand that holidays can be tight for people, what with the gifts and all of that, but what about us? I think part of the problem is that people just do not seem to understand that we don't make a normal hourly wage -- we make $2.13 an hour. Yeah, we make less than half of the federal minimum wage, and we literally depend on people's tips to live. So when I work really hard, as I have been, and then continually get less-than-mediocre tips, it's extremely discouraging.

I have even been extra nice and helpful in a desperate hope that it will help my tips, but honestly it seems to make no difference whatsoever how I act. I get some of my worst tips when I'm at my serving best, and I get some of the best when I'm a cold bitch. I try to figure this out in my head, because it makes no sense to me; why do people tip me more when I'm mean to them? And to me, tip = appreciation, so I want to know why people appreciate bitchy service more.

When I go out to a restaurant, I want a server who is warm, friendly, knowledgeable, and helpful. There is no way I'd want a server like me when I'm in bitter mode. If it weren't for the fact that I know it's bad service, I'd probably just be a bitch all the time. I mean, Jesus Christ.

And then there are the people who are just so super nice and you get along well with them, they have a great time with you, they may even go so far as to compliment you on the service, and then they leave something along the lines of 10%. I mean, WTF? Actually, this is what I call 'the verbal tip'. If they tell you you were a great server or anything like that, you know immediately you're doomed. I have noticed, too, that the verbal tip is apparently taken to be an invisible 5%, because when you get the actual tip, it's usually only 10%.

What is wrong with people??

Wednesday, November 26, 2003

Dead Deer, Freaks, and Thanksgiving


Kind of ironic that I was just writing up a post the other night about my freakish neighbors, because you will not believe what is hanging from the tree outside my kitchen window.

A dead deer.

Yes, a dead deer. Dozer, being the typical male West Virginian that he is, enjoys hunting. But at least never before had he actually brought back a deer carcass and hung it outside my window.

You have to understand that as a Wiccan, I am against killing things. I don't really believe in war, I don't believe in hunting, I don't believe in killing insects. I believe that every living thing, from plant to human being, is holy, and that it's wrong to kill unnecessarily.

Now, if you're lost in the woods and starving, by all means, kill a deer and feed yourself. But someone living in normal life, who isn't starving and simply hunts for the mere pleasure of killing? That is so beyond wrong to me.

And then, to bring home this poor deer and make me have to deal with seeing it and feeling bad that it lost its life.. it's gross and it makes me angry. Not to mention they decided to do all their hacking away and skinning and cleaning and all of that right outside my window.

When I saw them lift the deer from the truck, I just went, Oh no... poor thing and turned away quickly because I couldn't bear to see it. I honestly had half a mind to go out there and do a blessing for the deer, to thank it for living and for giving its life to feed the people who had killed it. However, I'm not sure the good Christians around here would understand much of that. Besides, they never left the deer alone, and since I heard them hacking away, it's probably too late.

So there's that, and the fact that I'm spending Thanksgiving alone this year. But on the bright side, I haven't seen the freakazoid since the day we first talked, and I'm hoping that she decided she didn't want to move in after all. And due to very strange turpentine-like fumes drifting from downstairs, I had a headache yesterday and was petrified that my gas heater was leaking.

I called my landlord to come over and check, just to be certain, and there was no leak. I've always had trouble with getting the heater to light; it's kind of old and you could stand there pressing the ignitor for 30 minutes before it actually caught the pilot.. and then the pilot wouldn't stay on when you turned the knob, so you'd have to do it all over again and try to turn it just the right way so the pilot would stay lit and the heater flame would catch.

Well, he couldn't get it lit either, after he'd turned it off and checked for a leak. So he kept it off and told me he'd come back today with a certain part he thought wasn't working. Well, I lucked out (maybe cause he really likes me) and got a brand-new heater!

It's way, way more modern-looking, and it is so beyond easy to light. It's apparently got an electric pilot or something, to where it only takes one push of the ignitor and *click*, it's lit. Freaking awesome, I say.

And lastly, I just booked tickets for my Christmas/New Years trip to Italy to visit my mom, sister, and everyone. And get this.. Usually I don't check the internet for plane fares because as long and as hard as I have searched, I have always gotten better fares through a travel agent. I mean, majorly better fares, by $300 or so, so mucking about online has always been a pain in the ass and a waste of time.

Well, the travel agent quoted me $1000 for this ticket, and I knew my mom was not going to be happy about that. So I logged onto Travelocity today and searched for some fares and -- you're not going to believe this -- I'm flying to Italy and back for $443.95. $443.95! Round-trip! Utter craziness, I tell you, but I know my mom will be quite pleased. So yeah, if anyone feels like taking a holiday trip to Italy for cheap, there you go.

Anyhow, off I go.. and happy T-day to you all. Eat some stuffing and turkey for me.. I'll be having shepherd's pie and magic brownies.

:D

Tuesday, November 25, 2003

Try Me

I'm kind of weird about advocating products I really like. If I find something awesome, I want to tell everyone, so they might be able to enjoy it, too. Anyhow, I took a major chance tonight while grocery shopping. I've been kind of craving popcorn, so I looked over the choices. The last time, I noticed something called Orville Redenbacher Cinnabon popcorn. I was intrigued by the idea of cinnamon popcorn, but the cinnamon roll frosting kind of put me off. I mean, cinnamon popcorn -- and with a frosting-- that's just kind of weird and freakish.

Well, I took a chance and tried it and I can't even begin to tell you how fabulous it is. I'd been kind of afraid of the whole flavored popcorn thing ever since I tried Act II's caramel corn variety. The thought of the so-called "caramel" alone makes me want to hurl. The caramel popcorn was just disgusting, and I don't even know why they continue to make it; I can't imagine anyone actually likes such a shoddily designed product.

So, because I'm bored and have too much time on my hands, I'm going to do a product review on these two popcorns.


Type: Act II Caramel Corn microwave popcorn.

Packaging: You get three bags of popcorn and three foil pouches of "caramel". The bags of popcorn are designed differently from all other microwave brands; instead of lying the bag flat, the butter and kernels are at the bottom of the bag and it's stood upright. The pouches are made of impenetrable steel and must be attacked with sharp objects to get the caramel out. Your hands will get sticky, there is no avoiding it.

Popcorn Flavor: "Caramel", but in truth, the popped corn itself tastes nothing but salty and burned.

Topping: A dark brown brick they call caramel, but which looks and tastes like no caramel I've ever eaten. It's not gooey like caramel, and not the lovely chestnut color a person might usually be accustomed to. It's thick, heavy, grainy, and has a sickly-sweet and vaguely caramel odor to it.

Convenience/Ease of Use: Nonexistent. The way the bag is designed, in my opinion, contributes to the fact that no matter how short of a time you cook the popcorn, it always burns. Add this to the fact that you're supposed to microwave the popcorn, toss in the caramel brick, and microwave it again for two minutes, only further burning the already-burnt popcorn. Then, I found it pretty much impossible to actually melt the caramel, no matter what method I tried. I even put the foil pouch in boiling water, and what I got was soft brown goo and a lot of oil. Really fucking nasty.

Taste: Sickeningly sweet, with a mellow burned flavor. And that's the pieces that actually have caramel on them; since the caramel never totally melts, it's impossible to actually coat the popcorn with it. You end up with big clumps of brown goo with some popcorn pieces stuck to it. I'm not sure how to describe the taste of the so-called caramel; it doesn't taste like real caramel, it's thicker, grainier and altogether way more disgusting.

Other Product Flaws: On top of the popcorn burning, there was constantly an unacceptable amount of unpopped kernels remaining. For one, if half the popcorn can't pop before it burns, there's obviously something wrong with the design, no? Secondly, watch your teeth.. I mean, you're supposed to shake everything in the bag up with the caramel -- which means a little surprise or two when you crack your teeth stumbling upon them.

Conclusion: Whoever came up with this entire product concept needs to be dragged out into the street and publicly flogged.




Type: Orville Redenbacher's Cinnabon microwave popcorn.

Packaging: 4 bags of popcorn with a foil packet of frosting bundled in each.

Popcorn Flavor: Cinnamon butter. I have to say I was a bit stunned, but it was absolutely delightful. Plenty of cinnamon flavor, plus the butter gives it a slight salty-sweet flavor combination that is just yummy.

Topping: "Sweet Pour Over Cinnabon Frosting". I will pay someone a quarter to bitchslap the person that came up with that name. Other than that, I have no complaints about the frosting. It's fairly liquidy and tastes like the generic cinnamon bun frosting you get everywhere. You get quite a bit of it to squirt all over everything, which is great, because the liquid seems to seep down and get the popcorn on the bottom, so you can get a fairly even coating without even having to shake the bag.

Convenience/Ease of Use: Yes, yes, yes. Everything about this product is convenient. I mean, leave it up to Orville to come up with the perfect popcorn product -- Act II just totally sucks monkey weiner in comparison. First of all, each bag of popcorn has its idiot-proof frosting pouch all bundled up and ready to go. Then, the bag is actually designed the correct way, so the popcorn popped perfectly and I had very few unpopped kernels. The bag itself is designed to be used as a bowl; you simply rip off the center section and voila! This is ideal for lazy persons like myself, who would hate to dirty a bowl when they could simply eat right out of the bag. Well, if I had a bowl, anyway. But at least your hands don't get all buttery and stuff when you reach in. And then the frosting pouches couldn't have been more simple; all you have to do is knead them before you pour them on, and they're designed with an easy-to-rip-off strip and a narrow opening so you can squirt it on in moderate amounts and thus eliminates the problem of shooting your wad all at once.

Taste: The popcorn alone is delicious. I absolutely love cinnamon, and I'm not a stranger to sweet popcorn; the French eat popcorn with sugar on it instead of salt, and I liked that a lot. However, even though I was a little wary of the whole frosting deal, especially after the disgusting caramel crap, the popcorn was about a million times better with the frosting on it. I don't know exactly why, maybe because it made the popcorn a bit more sweet. Or maybe because cinnamon rolls are always better with frosting on them. In any case, I was so amazed at the superiority of this product, how every detail and convenience was thought of and put together so well.

Conclusion: I know it sounds kind of weird, but trust me. It's really, really good. Major thumbs up.

Sunday, November 23, 2003

Semi-Vacation


I am now officially on Thanksgiving vacation, at least until Thursday night. No school, no work.. I’m free to be lazy and bored, and maybe recuperate a little. Yesterday during my second round at work, I started feeling like I might be coming down with something yet again. I mean, this would pretty much make it the third week in a row that I have been sick and it’s getting a little old. I still have a cough from the last go-around, so I think my immune system will probably appreciate some rest.

It was suggested to me by Mikey during my makeover that I might benefit from a little color – i.e. I should visit a tanning bed – mostly to make the dark circles under my eyes less pronounced. I agreed that color would help, but I have always had issues with the whole tanning salon thing. First of all, being always tan is bad for you and totally increases your risk of skin cancer. My grandfather on my mom’s side died at a fairly early age of melanoma, so not only am I at definite risk, but I’m a bit more sharply aware of the reality of skin cancer.

Then, there’s something really vain to me about actually paying to go somewhere and get tan, no matter what the season. I mean, I really like being tan and all, but would never actually pay to do it.

What finally swayed me is me and my damn skin problems. I originally thought I had eczema, since it was just dry, itchy skin that I would occasionally scratch raw, but a girl at work with psoriasis is convinced it’s not eczema, but psoriasis instead. I could deal with having eczema, because it’s nowhere as ugly as psoriasis. I can’t afford to go to a dermatologist and find out for sure, but one remedy to clear up trouble spots is to tan. Apparently a B vitamin you can only get through the skin from the sun is transmitted also in the UV rays in a tanning booth, and this B vitamin helps the skin heal.

So today I went to a tanning booth for the first time. I was a total tanning virgin and had no idea what to do, or how long I should tan. I have the Scottish fair skin and rosy complexion of my grandfather and I tend to burn really easily. I once got a third-degree sunburn on my left shoulder after driving three hours in a tank top.

The girl and I decided on eight minutes, she filled me in on everything, and then showed me my bed and how to work it. It’s amazing how long eight minutes can be when you’re in practical sensory deprivation. I got out at seven minutes to check the time left; I was sure it had been at least eight, maybe ten, minutes.

Anyhow, eight minutes seems to be a good amount of time. I did get a little burned, but in some random places – the backs of my calves, my back – and what freaks me out a bit is that some of the tan patterns looks suspiciously like the tube lights in the tanning bed. Like I put my right elbow right up against the bed so the eczema-whatever patch there could get good exposure, and now I have a semi-diagonal sunburn stripe up my outside forearm.

So, like, I want to know how one is supposed to tan in a bed like that without getting stripes. Are you supposed to shift around in there, or what? Gimme some tanning tips.

Otherwise, my skin feels nice and warm, like I spent a good day outside. I just hope my mom doesn’t kill me when she finds out I’m tanning… she’s always been so on me about protecting my skin against the sun.

I take it back – I’m definitely sunburned. Ow. I’ll definitely have to invest in some sunscreen or something.

Saturday, November 22, 2003

Please, God, Help Me


Since I have my PC up and running at home, but still no internet, I’ve been amusing myself with blogging at home and then saving the entries to disk for back-dating when I get to a computer.

I don't think I've talked much about my freakish neighbors, which is kind of amazing because I suffer daily at the hands of their weird and random ways. I should say first off that my landlord made a point to tell me, when I first moved in, that he did not want to be involved in any neighborly conflicts, and that if we had problems with each other, we needed to work them out amongst ourselves. I know that as a landlord, he should take care of problems, but he is a hard-headed little 80-year-old man, and I don't feel like arguing with him.

My next-door neighbor -- I have never bothered to learn his name -- is the King of Freaks at my apartment complex. He works very odd hours at Wal-Mart, sometimes graveyard, sometimes normal hours, and pretty much everything in between. He's got to be in his 40's, and he is not what I would call an attractive man. I personally think he's gross, but that's only because I know he is obsessed with porn and is a scary alcoholic, to boot.

A few days after I'd first moved in, it was something like 9pm and dark outside, when I heard someone come up my steps and knock on my door. My other neighbor had lent me his snow shovel to dig my car out of huge snow drifts and it had broken while I was using it. I'd left him a note saying I was sorry and that I would get him one to replace it (and hadn't, because Lowe's was sold out) and I was expecting him to come chat about it. So when I opened my door, I thought it was him at first, and I was friendly. Then I noticed the open beer can in his hand and the guy swaying a bit, and when I got a better look at his face in the dark (not thinking to just turn the porch light on), I realized I had some drunken stranger on my porch. This freaked me out.

It freaked me out even more when he said, "I was wonderin' if I could stop in for a bit."

I blinked and replied, "I'd actually rather if you didn't.."

I was afraid of some belligerent outburst, but he just said okay and turned around and walked off.

I have had to call the cops on this man twice. As I mentioned before, he keeps really odd hours, so it means sometimes he's up and in prime time when I need to be sleeping. He's fond of having buddies over, and they all sit around getting pissed and blasting the stereo. I don't care so much if he blasts it during the day or at normal times; if I'm up, I usually have music on and I can ignore it. But one night he'd been blasting the stereo since 1am, and when I went to bed at 3:30, the party was still going strong. This was not the first time he'd kept me awake with the stereo, and I was fed up. Particularly so when I laid in bed for an hour, unable to fall asleep at all due to the music next door. I know the guy is an alcoholic, and my 80-year-old landlord has told me to stay away from him, so I wasn't about to go over there at 4am to ask him to turn his music down. I got up and called the cops on him, which is a story in its own, but thankfully the stereo blasting has been mostly kept to decent hours.

Then, not long after, I happened to be coming from work and when I got out of my car, I heard the distinct sound of porn. At first, I was like, Uh.. that cannot be what I think it is.. but as I continued to listen, it was abundantly clear, amidst all the faked Uuungh!s and Oohh yeahs. I looked up to find the source of the sound and my next-door-neighbor's window was wide open. To make matters even worse, as I started to walk past his apartment, I immediately noticed that his front door, too, was wide open. I suddenly got the image of him sprawled out on his couch, probably facing the door, wacking off. It was too disgusting.

Then, the blasted porn, combined with the open window and door, became a regular feature of living here. I would be awakened in the morning to blasted porn, get ready for work with blasted porn, come home to blasted porn. It would go on for hours sometimes. And he almost always had both his windows and door totally open. At one point, I guess he began to realize wacking off with the door open and porn blaring might not be kosher, so whenever anyone pulled up in the parking lot, he'd click the video off. But as soon as it seemed the coast was clear, he'd click it back on, and just as loud. It seemed really wrong and gross, but I didn't know what to do about it. I mean, anyone walking by would be assaulted by porn.. and there are lots of little neighborhood kids running around.

Now, don't get me wrong. I don't care about porn itself. If you want to watch porn, that's cool with me, and I admit I've watched it, myself. I just don't think I should have to be subjected to that all the fucking time. And the fact that he did it with his door and window open, that he could very well see me walk by whilst diggling his niggle.. that's just creepy and disgusting. I mean, close the freaking door, for god's sake!

Like with the first time I called the cops, I was too afraid to go talk to him myself, and it didn't seem like any of my other neighbors were particularly bothered; at least, no one ever asked the guy to knock it off. The cop actually knew him, so he didn't get angry or anything, and at least my life has been porn-free ever since.

I've been the only woman living in the building, and never is that more felt than when I run into Dozer. Yes, that is apparently his name. Dozer. He's got to be in his 40's, wears glasses, and is somewhat heavyset with a beerbelly. Again, not really what I consider an attractive man, though he has always been friendly to me. He looks just about as West Virginian as you can get, complete with red truck (with "Daddy's Baby" in red letters across the windshield), camoflage obsession, and a love of hunting. As far as I can tell, he lives with at least one other person, even though the apartment is only a small one-bedroom. I never could figure it out, what the living arrangement might look like inside; and during the summer, he even had his two kids living there with him.

The first time I met him, he came outside while I was attempting to dig my car out of the snow with a dustpan and asked me where my 'old man' was, and why he wasn't helping me. He then kept asking questions and talking to me until I was forced to tell him I was single. He then went on about how it was such a shame, a pretty face like mine, blah blah, and pretty much totally embarrassing me. I really wish I could have simply said, "Well, actually, I'm gay," but the rednecks around here generally don't cotton too well to us homos.

From then on, every single time I ran into him, it was "Hey, pretty lady" this and "Why, hello, beautiful" that, to where I hope he's not outside when I go to get into my car. Actually, he was gone for a while, at least a couple of months, and I was starting to kind of hope that it was a permanent move. You know, the less freaks I have to deal with, the better. But he just came back last month, he apparently was with his fiancee in Canada or something. But fortunately, I haven't been running into him much.

Then, the last of the other three units was Aaron, my landlord's grandson, just below me. Aaron was in his early 20's, not bad to look at, and also a very nice guy. He would occasionally do little favors for me, like bringing my trash can back from the curb before I had a chance, or mowing the area beside my porch. I liked that Aaron lived here, because he was one other normal person that I could count on.

But Aaron just moved out, which brings me great consternation, especially now because today I had the pleasure of meeting my new downstairs neighbor. She told me her name, but I forgot it, because once we were introduced, I was absolutely entranced by her utter and total freakishness. First of all, I worked a split today, and I had a couple of hours to just relax at home before I had to go back. I'd eaten lunch and was in the middle of a game of Starcraft when someone comes a-poundin' on my door.

When I answered it, she was on my doorstep, poking her nose around me to see into my apartment and looking very much like she wanted to be asked in. She was in her 40's or so and looked pretty grizzled. Not to mention she had like four teeth -- she kind of reminded me of those crazy bag ladies that sit next to you on the bus and then won't stop talking to you. I disliked her immediately and did not want to deal with getting her out once she came in. She asked me eighty billion questions, starting off with did I like living here, what's it like, what are the neighbors like, and then she started in on the personal questions. Am I married? No? Divorced or anything? 'Cause I'm divorced. Well, you must be seeing someone. No? Well, I can't believe that, someone as pretty as you.

And it just went on and on. Early on, she'd imposed on me, on my break, to help her move her fold-out bed inside, and she just would not shut up the entire time, she just kept babbling on and asking me a ton of questions. I did tell her about the roaches, and she fixated on that as something to worry over, whether she'd picked the right apartment, and she mentioned repeatedly that the landlord liked me, I suppose hoping I could sway him to get an exterminator to come out and spray. Though I did tell her that I've mentioned it a few times to him, and he just stubbornly refuses.

At one point, she bluntly asked me if I had a phone. I mean, on top of everything else, now this? I warily answered that I did and she then went on to not-so-subtly insinuate that she might like to use my phone for a few days until hers got installed. This woman just got more and more imposing and freakish as time passed.

I tried to get away politely, but she wouldn't have it. She kept talking and asking questions, and bending my ear while I stood there wanting to simply bolt. I finally started to get away and she stopped and asked me if she'd done anything to offend me. I told her no, but she continued on about it, and I again told her she hadn't offended me. I got back inside finally, sat back down and resumed my game. I had peace for about five minutes, when again I heard her climb my stairs and pound on my door.

I opened it and she said, "I'm sorry, I just.. Well, back when we were downstairs, what did you mean, when you were holding your nose?" she mimicked what I'd done, "Well, I was wondering if it was me or something, like, do you think I smell?" and then she lifted the lapel of her coat and sniffed her armpit. I stood there feeling like I'd stepped into the Twilight Zone.

The gesture she'd done to mimic my supposed holding my nose was exactly how I often scratch my nose. I have skin issues and I'm an itchy motherfucker, what can I say? I guess I can't even scratch my nose without offending someone. I mean, good god on a gravystick.

So anyway, I had to spend five more minutes of my time assuring her I hadn't meant that she smelled, and trying to get her to go away. Before I got away the first time, she'd said something to me about wanting to know the other neighbors because she wants friends, I told her that I just like to do my own thing and be left alone, knowing that was pretty blunt, but I wanted to make it clear that I just want people to let me be a hermit and leave me the fuck alone. I don't think that's too much to ask for, do you?

If my next-door neighbor is the King of Freaks, then my downstairs neighbor is their High Queen. She's not just a freak, she's a freakazoid.

I swear, people, you just wait until I get my mom's digital camera over Christmas. I'm going to take pictures of West Virginia, and you will all see that all the tales I tell you are the absolute truth. I mean, if Forrest Gump and Rush Limbaugh had a love child, it would be West Virginia.

One of the most ironically amusing things about Parkersburg is they actually have a sign up as you enter town that says "Parkersburg respects diversity." Every time I pass that sign, I go, "Ha!" Because people around here, in general, have no idea what diversity really means.

Monday, November 17, 2003

Party Like It's My Birthday


Sippin' Bacardi like it's my... Er. I'm a dork, but yeah, it is my birthday. The big ole 2-7, which I think means, officially, that I am just cresting the hill now, and soon enough I will be passing over it.

God, how did I get so old??? I see 30 coming up, and I'll tell you what, boy -- I do not feel 30.

I went out with Kit and Mikey last Saturday for my birthday. I didn't think I had that much to drink, but I ended up pretty fucked up anyhow. Kit left relatively early, with the 'friend' I was sort of set up with a week or whatever ago, but those of us who remained were all starving when the bar closed, so it was decided we'd go to Mountaineer Family Restaurant.

Now, I had never actually been to the Mountaineer, although I have heard all about it -- it's the diner people go to at like 3:00am. Jan had mentioned it to me, actually pretty fondly, but I had a really difficult time picturing her there. Well, not just picturing her there, but there and liking it, too.

The first thing you notice after you get out of your car is a certain greasy stench that permeates the air. When you go inside, you realize that the stench can and does get worse, then top that off with the restaurant (if you can call it that) being filled with some of the scariest, most unsavory types you can imagine -- and that is the Mountaineer.

I have been craving pancakes for months, but haven't felt like actually making them for myself, so I was really looking forward to having some along with a big glass of milk. We sat down and the service was so slow and crappy that the time I spent sitting in the booth breathing in the grease stench and getting eyeballed by a really big, scary biker-type woman across from us.. well, I started to get nauseous.

I went outside for some fresh air, but of course you can't escape the grease-laden air, not for a good few hundred yards or so away from the Mountaineer, so it wasn't much help. I went back inside and told Mikey and Aaron that the place was making me sick, and since our waitress was a total bitch, and we'd been sitting there for like 20-30 minutes, everyone decided to bail. Thank god, because I knew I was going to puke, and soon.

Me and alcohol, we don't really get along; especially now that I'm older, I definitely find that I cannot handle my alcohol nearly as well as I used to. There's a very fine line for me between nicely buzzed or drunk and plastered, and when the line gets crossed, it usually bodes really badly for me. It means that if I'm going to be sick, or if there's any chance whatsoever that I might be sick, I will be. Because once that line is crossed and I'm too fucked up for my own good, it only takes something like being inside with the heat cranked to push me to worshiping the porcelain god.

So yeah.. Mikey and Aaron rushed me out of there, and we drove all the way back to my house -- me with the window wide open and my head resting on the door and halfway outside. I knew I was going to puke but for some reason I decided I would hold it until I got home so I could at least be in my own bathroom.

Then I was supposed to work a split shift the next day -- ha! I barely made it to my morning shift; Mikey called me just after 11 -- thank god, because he woke my dumb ass up -- knowing that I was still in bed. Thankfully someone picked up my night shift, because I don't know if I could have made it. I was on the verge of hurling again, when I first walked into work. But it was kind of funny because everyone was teasing me and giving me shit about the whole Mountaineer escapade; even Bill, our GM who can be extremely pissy (especially when you're late), was teasing me and giving me shit when I came in 15 minutes late.

And then I do have some good news, finally! I got my motherboard combo kit and the RAM last Friday. Chris came over during my break from work, we smoked a bowl, and then I was so anxious to get my computer up, I attempted to install the motherboard myself. Well, the motherboard I got is a micro, so it's about a third smaller than my old one, leaving several screw holes empty because there isn't a screw riser beneath them. Chris helped me by screwing in some of the screws, pointing out where I needed to plug stuff in, yadda yadda.

But the computer would not turn on. I knew the power cable was fine, and I was almost positive the power supply was fine, too.. but plugged in and the switch in the back on, the power supply was making this really weird clicking noise, but that was all. The computer wouldn't turn on, no fans, nada. It was pretty freaky, especially that clicking noise. I figured I must have royally screwed up the installation, maybe broke the motherboard, or that I did break the video card (which I'd tried hard to wrest from its housing, bent pins doing so, and then realized it was screwed onto the case), or that it was some other fucking issue I had to deal with.

Well, thank god for Paul, he's my computer guru! He told me he'd take a look at it, so I went over there last night. He was just as stumped as I was, since everything was plugged in and the parts should have been getting power, but nothing we tried worked. We looked it up on the web, but found nothing conclusive that would explain the problem.

We were both getting to the limit of our ideas as to how to fix it, when Paul decided he would take all the cables and junk out, reseat some things, and go over putting everything together step-by-step. When he'd taken all the cables out, I looked into the case and noticed something odd; the motherboard looked like it was bent down in one corner, and I pointed it out to Paul. What had gotten me is that I didn't like seeing my motherboard bent like that, and then Paul asked me if the motherboard was touching metal.

It sure was -- Chris had screwed the motherboard into a screw hole that was not one of the riser variety, meaning he had grounded the motherboard. Paul and I quickly unscrewed the offending piece of metal, and sure enough, the fans all came on. Fucking A, I'm telling you.. something as simple and as dumb as a screw grounding the motherboard!

My computer had some other issues, such as a floppy drive failure message, and a corrupt driver or something that was causing it to restart during boot-up. I ran home to get my XP disk while Paul solved the floppy error. And voila, I now have a working PC at home again! Once I deal with all my car issues, maybe I can actually afford internet again...

The thing is that this new processor should be something like 1.4GHz - 1.5GHz, an upgrade from my 975mHz, yet the computer doesn't seem faster at all; in fact, if anything, it seems slower. So I don't know, maybe it needs some tweaking or something. But I am so totally, totally happy to have my good computer back, all my music, games, etc. Hurrah!

Wednesday, November 12, 2003

Nifty


I'm busy searching for monologues online, and I randomly stumbled across this thing called Gender Genie. You paste in an exerpt of text and it will predict, based on some algorithms, whether the author is male or female. I pasted in my last entry and it predicted correctly (that I'm female, duh), then I pasted in an entry from Alex's blog, and it again predicted correctly.

Pretty nifty!

Tuesday, November 11, 2003

Insert Witty Title Here


If anyone had any doubts as to what a loser and a dumbass I am, last Friday, I was pulled over yet again, due to my illegal car, and given another $300+ ticket. Fab. What kills me is that I was pulled over about three blocks from my house -- I was just pulling out of my street and there happened to be a cop right there, who apparently was out to bust me for something from the get-go.

So here I am, months after the first ticket, only now just able to finally pay the fucking thing off, and I get another one. My plan was to save up and pay off the ticket, then save up and pay to register/insure/inspect my car. So now I'm set back yet another $300 or so.

Of course I only have myself to blame, because I'm such an irresponsible dope, but you know. God damn it.

The ticket happened on a day where I was pretty much very happy and satisfied with life. Andrea and I had gotten together the night before, and she spent the night at my house -- shock of all shocks -- and because it was really good, I was feeling great. She left, Chris called me for a ride, I went to pick him up, and boom.

Grrrrr.

So then I got to thinking. I don't understand why every time something really good happens to me, something really bad also has to happen. Why can't I have good things happen, and be allowed to revel in the happiness afterward? It's rather frustrating.

My solution is that I'm not going to drive anymore, unless absolutely necessary -- and especially not in Vienna, where the cops are obviously so bored they're out looking to bust people for shit. I bought myself a bike for $70 at Wal-Mart, for transportation around Vienna, and am going to do the bus thang, to get to school.

Despite the fact that I think, at the heart of things, my bike is a piece of crap, at least it looks fairly cool. I went into Wal-Mart thinking I wanted a purple bike, and I got one. It's a nice-looking mountain bike with front shocks, purple and silver with light blue trim. I bought the chintziest lock because I didn't think I had enough money -- that, too, is purple. I'm so stylin', what can I say.

Then, my birthday is coming up, y'all. 6 days and counting, and even though I am kind of freaked out that I'll be 27, I'm happy about my birthday gifts. I had my PC diagnosed -- dead motherboard and dead RAM -- and thanks to my wonderful mom, I picked out the parts I wanted on eBay and they are on their way to me as we speak.

The upside of this is that I'm at least getting an upgrade in processor speed, from 975mHz to 1.4GHz, and probably an upgrade in all the various parts that come with the motherboard (CPU fan, etc.). I can't even begin to describe how utterly and totally happy I am that I'm finally going to get my good PC back -- all my music, good games, yadda yadda, back at my disposal. And timely, too, since I'm apparently going to be non-mobile for a while.

On top of the motherboard combo and RAM my mom bought for me, she sent me $100 in cash. I thought hard about what to spend it on, and I decided it was time for a new phone. I've been ogling a certain Vtech phone/answering machine for months, but could never justify blowing $40 on it, when my old phone and answering machine work just fine.

When I went to Wal-Mart, I couldn't find the phone I'd been eyeing, but instead, I noticed an even better, cooler phone for $54, and decided to get that, since it had all the features I wanted (2.4GHz, digital answering machine, caller ID), plus it has something called TeleZapper, which supposedly will cut down on those really, horridly annoying computer-dialed telemarketer calls.

After I bought that, I had $42 left over, and I wasn't sure what I would buy. I thought of buying my mom's Christmas present with it, but then it occurred to me that it might not be cool to buy someone a present with money they gave you as a present. So then the debate began, between new shoes and new bras.

I decided to get a couple of new bras, thinking that the $42 wouldn't quite cover it.. but Lane Bryant is having a sale on bras, where it's buy one, get one half off, so they were cheaper than I'd anticipated. I know it may seem silly to be excited about things like getting a new phone and getting new bras, but when you are po' like I am, it's the little things. I can't even remember the last time I had a new bra.. has to be like two years ago or something. Criminy.

So the main things I've been mulling over this past week have been Andrea and my new traffic ticket. Andrea is a long-time friend of Mikey, and I think she's really cool and fun to hang out with. And unlike some people, *cough*Angie*cough*, a person can hold a decent, interesting conversation with her. She's a goth chick, a bit taller than me, short, black hair, stunning blue eyes, very small frame and nice body. When I first met her, I thought she was hot, but Mikey told me she was straight, so I thought that was the end of that.

Well, it turns out she's not simply straight, but that she has some fairly strong bi tendencies. She also told me she thought I was hot, but I didn't think she meant she thought I was hot hot. It honestly was the first time I'd ever had a one-nighter with a woman, and it was probably the best unattached sex I've ever had. I knew she was leaving for New Mexico soon, to get away from Parkersburg (which I highly encourage of anyone who has grown up here) and go to school, so we both were aware there would have to be very limited attachment.

The weird thing is when I have sex with people outside of a relationship (and occasionally in the beginning of a relationship), I experience an odd feeling of detachment, like I'm not totally there, in the moment. I think this is why I'm so satisfied with the whole thing with Andrea; I felt very in the moment and the sex was good. I think it's a pity, though, that she never called me afterward -- I don't want to give the impression that I expected anything, although on Thurs. night, she expressed regret that she was leaving, now that she and I were getting down to it.

I think, though, that maybe she's freaked out by the whole thing. The night we were together, she expressed a desire to get together again before she left, and I told her when I'd be free over the weekend, but then never heard from her. Mikey hasn't talked to her, either, and agreed that he thought she was probably freaking out. But that's part of the reason I wanted to talk to her after she left -- to possibly assuage some of those feelings.

But ah well, I guess. Maybe she'll overcome it, maybe she'll want to talk.. or maybe not. Guess I'll just have to wait and see.

And lastly, I finally found and got a hold of Adriel, my first girlfriend/first love, after about 5 years of lost contact. I've really regretted how that whole thing ended up, because she's always been one of my favorite people, and I've missed knowing her. The good news is that she is just as excited as I am, to be in contact again, and we've been happily emailing and trying to catch up.

Happy joy!

Monday, November 10, 2003

GRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRR!!!!


I just posted this long-ass thing, and Blogger ate it.

I'm pissed off.

Wednesday, November 05, 2003

Boooooo!


I don't know what's been up with me lately, but once I get in front of a computer, I lose all desire to blog. I know I've been slacking in this area, but I've had all sorts of other things to keep me occupied. Although I have all sorts of things to say when I'm away from a computer, I kind of blank out when it comes time to post.

Kate is gone to Denver, and that's kind of sad because I know I'm going to miss hanging out with her. Before she left, she gave me this book on basic figure drawing -- she and I had been discussing art, and I'd showed her my sketch books. Some of my sketches are missing things like hands, feet, and heads, since I've never been good at drawing them. So Kate thoughtfully gave me exactly what I'd been wanting for years, some instruction on figure drawing.

I've been sketching quite a bit, playing around with proportions and shapes and such, and I'm really pleased to see an immense improvement. I sketched a wood elf the other day, though I'm not pleased with her face, I really like the rest of her. Today I started a sketch of another elf from a picture in a Computer Games magazine, and even though I just have the basic face done, I can tell you already it's about a million times better than any face I've drawn in the past.

I'm in the home stretch of fixing my PC. I got it diagnosed -- dead motherboard and dead RAM -- and am in a bidding war on eBay to buy an awesome motherboard combo for dirt cheap. I hope. I pray that no one outbids my max. I'm also paying off the lapsed cable bill, so maybe eventually I'll be able to actually have cable at home again. I would do the dialup thing, but I don't think my PC has a modem in it.. and I haven't felt like dealing with that, on top of everything else.

As for school, I dropped my history class, but I am doing very well in math and psych. Actually, I'm pretty grateful that the semester is nearly over with.. that means that I am actually moving forward toward my goals. And of course, I absolutely cannot wait to move out of Parkersburg to Morgantown. I'd go in a heartbeat, now, if I could.

So I've been incredibly broke the past couple of months, and really freaking out about all my bills, my traffic ticket looming over my head, fixing my PC, yadda yadda. It's sort of felt like I'm drowning in it all, and I prayed for some sort of financial miracle to help me get my head back above water.

My dad/step-dad in CA signed me up for some pyramid scheme his buddy got into, in hopes that some free money might come my way. So far, I haven't seen a cent from the scheme, but even though I know it's not very likely, I still have a small glimmer of hope that I might get some freebie check in the mail to help me out.

But actually, what happened instead is that I got a couple of letters from Crapplebee's, informing me that there were two checks I never picked up and that I could claim them if I wanted them. The total amount of both checks was almost $93 -- not any amount to sneeze at, and applied to the $100 I have put away for my ticket, that puts me at 2/3 of the total amount. That, my friends, is a true miracle.

The thing is, I have no idea where these mystery checks came from. After I quit Crapplebee's, I picked up my last check on the following payday. I remember going in for some reason, some time after quitting, and being surprised that there was a check for me. So where did these other two checks come from?

Not that I'm going to complain or anything.. I just can't figure out how I came to have the checks. But folks, sometimes when you ask for a small miracle, it happens.

Halloween was absolutely and totally super. Mikey threw on some random, clashing clothes -- his checked polyester golf pants, gay-ass red librarian glasses, and funky bucket hat were the highlights -- and went as a gay hobo.. I threw on my plaid skirt, pink-topped tube socks, chunky brown shoes, and a grey tank underneath one of my work shirts, put my hair into pigtails, and went as a schoolgirl. The only problem was there were about five other schoolgirls there besides me, and they either were hotter or had better costumes, so Mikey and I decided I'd be Mary Catherine Gallagher, instead.

I had a feeling that I'd be running into Mel, Angie's girlfriend, and at first that made me a bit anxious. But after she had bumped into me, literally, three or four times, without saying a word or even acknowledging me, I started to get amused, instead. I mean, if her idea of intimidation is following me around the bar and bumping into me, well, sheeeit. That's child's play.

Mikey'd told Andrea about Angie playing me like that, and when I sat down with her and told her about Mel following me around and bumping into me, she told me she was going to take care of it. This made me a bit nervous because I really hate that kind of conflict, where you don't know whether it's going to come down to blows or not. And I've always been more of a pacifist than anything else; the only time I've ever full-out fought anyone was after they (yes, they, as in two girls) jumped me and I had to defend myself.

So Andrea had me point out Mel to her, and went over to talk to her. She told Mel, "We have to talk. What is up with your girlfriend, all over my girlfriend, playing her like that?"

Mel was probably surprised to be confronted, much less finding herself with Andrea all worked up and in her face. Andrea has a pretty powerful energy to her, and Mel immediately started kissing her ass and apologizing. Then, Andrea said Mel really, really wanted to apologize to me, so the next thing I know, Andrea is leading Mel outside onto the patio. I was still really uneasy about a possible confrontation, but Andrea sat down next to me and announced that Mel wanted to apologize.

So Mel said she was sorry, and I was so surprised at the complete twist in events that I asked, "Why?"

I don't think Mel even knew what she was apologizing for, but she apologized anyway, and then the details of Angie's little drama came out. My feeling that I, and our kissing, was simply something juicy to pass on to Mel and piss her off was confirmed. And apparently I'm not the first, nor the only, girl Angie has screwed around with to get Mel worked up. Angie had made Mel out to be this horrible, possessive person, but I see what a liar Angie is, how fucked up, because it seems to me that Mel, even though she has stupidly been hanging on to this thing with Angie for three fucking years, is the more normal and honest of the two.

See, Angie'd told Mel I was giving her dinner and champagne (!), romancing her, and all this utter bullshit. For one, yeah, I did make dinner -- shepherd's pie, so romantic -- but not only did I feed Angie, I fed Chris and Katie when they stopped over. And champagne?? Whatever!

And I just knew the kissing was going to be twisted.. Angie, I swear to the God, the Goddess, on the Bible, cross my heart, whatever.. SHE kissed me first. Anyone who knows me knows that I'm generally a big chicken when it comes to girls, and I rarely ever make the first move. I also wasn't feeling really great about the whole thing; I'd had a very bad feeling about Angie since she began coming onto me, so I didn't want to encourage anything, when I wasn't sure how I felt.

To make a long story short, Mel started crying out on the patio with us. She's this macho-ass little dyke, and frankly I was a bit thrown off by the tears. We all watched in morbid fascination, sort of like watching a slow train wreck, not knowing how to react or what to say. But then Mel said that was it, she was done with Angie, and that when Angie arrived, she was going to break up with her.

Even though Angie wasn't supposed to be arriving for another half hour or so, all of a sudden, she was there.. and I was going, "Oh my god.. it's like the showdown at the O.K. Corral here." All of us on the patio knew what was coming, and Angie just walked right into it. Mel started ripping into her, asking her questions, all the while I'm sitting there somewhat paralyzed, completely disbelieving this was going down.

When Mel turned to me and asked me who kissed who first, I looked her straight in the eye and told her the truth, "I'm sorry, but no matter what she says, she kissed me first."

Everyone then turned to look at Angie, who said, "Well.. that's how I remember it..."

WEAK!

So yeah, they broke up.. the two of them in their separate corners, crying. However, the very next night, Mel was beyond drunk, and somehow they got back together. They were seen sucking face in the booth near the bar.

Certain things just make you shake your head because they couldn't be any stupider. But like I was telling Andrea, she and I were just part of that ongoing three-year cycle of drama, fucked up shit, and breakups; now they're back together, and the cycle is complete.

For now, anyway. Heh.

Thursday, October 30, 2003

Raaaawr


The ladybugs are back with a vengeance. The weather suddenly warmed up into the 70's, and I swear there must be around a hundred ladybugs inside my apartment at the moment. I've sort of given up; I don't know what else to do except sweep them up when they die.

I came down with a cold last week, which started off with a strep-like sore throat. I've been dosing myself with cold medicine which makes me feel almost normal for a while, but have been unable to shake the sore throat. I woke up last night with my throat so sore and dry that not even Chloroseptic lozenges helped.

I know no one likes being sick, but I really hate it. I also really hate sore throats, but every time I get sick, it always starts in my throat. I've had strep throat two or three times since I was 12.

Chloroseptic lozenges are the shit.

I've been embroiled in a little drama lately. Angie started showing an interest in me a couple weeks ago, and then came onto me at the bar. The problem is, she has a girlfriend; this macho-ass little dyke (who apparently thinks she's Eminem). Angie and I set a date, and she told me she was going to be "taking care of" the girlfriend situation.

Well, instead of taking care of it, she friggin' told the girlfriend she was coming over to hang out with me. WTF? This was about the point that I started to realize I might be getting played here.

The girlfriend, of course, is all pissed off and now is looking for me because she wants to have a "talk" with me. Fantastic. The thing is, after hanging out with Angie, I've realized that other than physical chemistry, there is no chemistry there. I don't really want to go out on another date with her, and I don't feel like dealing with this drama Angie sort of roped me into.

At the end of the night, Angie kissed me. My impression, after all the events of the evening, is that that was all she wanted out of the entire night with me; a juicy little tidbit to pass on to her girlfriend and get her jealous and pissed off. I'm a little irritated that I got sucked into this. I mean, this isn't what I bargained for.. what I was expecting was to hang out with Angie and get to know her a bit better, outside the bar.

Hopefully, though, a new gay bar will be opening up in a week, and Mikey and I won't have to go back to T.C. anymore. That place is a pit, and if I had a nickel for every mullet, I'd be a rich woman.

Invictus


Out of the night that covers me,
Black as the Pit from pole to pole,
I thank whatever gods may be
For my unconquerable soul.

In the fell clutch of circumstance
I have not winced nor cried aloud,
Under the bludgeonings of chance
My head is bloody, but unbowed.

Beyond this place of wrath and tears
Looms but the horror of the shade,
And yet the menace of the years
Finds, and shall find me, unafraid.

It matters not how strait the gate,
How charged with punishments the scroll,
I am the master of my fate:
I am the captain of my soul.

-- William Ernest Henley

Thursday, October 16, 2003

Wurd


I haven't much to talk about today.. I am going to drop my history class, as it's been ill-fated from the beginning, and I'm too afraid to take a test in it. Actually, there was a test today, but I just didn't go. I actually don't have to take history, but I'll likely wind up taking something similar to it, maybe Women's Studies or something, in the future.. satisfying my clusterly requirements.

I went to donate plasma and finally, the fourth time I tried, I started to get processed. Well, I say started because in addition to all the questions like "Any time since 1977, have you had sex with a man who has had sex with another man?" or "Have you ever been to [random African country]?", they now ask if you've spent any time in France prior to 1996.

Well, yeah, I have. I spent my senior year in France as an exchange student, in 1993-1994. Apparently a person can't even travel these days without fear of picking up some bizarre disease, like Mad Cow. I pointed out that if I had Mad Cow Disease, wouldn't it be obvious by now? The lady said that it usually doesn't appear until a person's in their 60's, that they think it's transmitted in blood and plasma, and therefore I am not able to donate. Actually, indefinitely deferred, because they apparently have very little idea about Mad Cow Disease, how to test for and treat it.. but once they figure it out, if it turns out that it can't be transmitted through plasma, I'm good to go.

But Jesus! I need that money so badly... I can't donate plasma because I spent a year in France? Nine years ago?? My god.

While cleaning up my apartment, I discovered an old, battered notebook. Inside, I have all sorts of writing -- poems, biographical stories -- mixed up with old math homework and women's history notes. Some of the creative writing is fairly depressing, but it does give me a totally different perspective, as far as how I felt just four years ago. It's quite different from how I feel today.

I thought I would make you all groan and squirm by posting some of my writing. Ha ha haaaaa..

6/25/99

I feel your hands
Wrapped warm around my heart
The thrilling sensation
Of my heart brimming
And spilling over
Too full of Love
For one person alone

How you live inside my head
As calming
As a midnight sea
Pulling my thoughts toward you
As surely
As the moon guides the tides

Your presence is as sweet
As an afternoon spent
In the cool shade
Beneath a tree
Its leaves whispering sighs
That echo what is unspoken
Within me.

Wednesday, October 15, 2003

What a Way to Go...


(Even if I have no friends and only 37 people come to my funeral)


What will your Funeral be like? by rashock
Username
You will die by:You die in sweet bliss while having sex with your lover or partner. Seems they were so good your heart couldn't stand it and stopped. Talk about a heart breaker, but at least everyone sees you in your casket with a smile on your face.
Death Date:February 26, 2039
Number attending your funeral?37
How much will you leave to friends and family?$3,278,950
Created with quill18's MemeGen!

Tuesday, October 14, 2003

Baby Got Back


I stumbled across this on http://www.memepool.com/, and it has to be one of the funniest things I've ever read.

First, the song "Baby Got Back" translated into Latin (with English translation).

Then, "Baby Got Back" translated into Greek (with English translation).

Food


I don't know why, but I was thinking about cooking and stuff. I'm a good cook, and I enjoy it, the problem is that I've never liked cooking for myself; it seems kind of pointless to cook a big meal for just me.. I'd much rather cook for someone else and feed them. I dunno, I get pleasure out of making other people happy.

I think the reason I was thinking about this is that for the past 3 or 4 months or so, I've pretty much been living on pizza. I'd order about two pizzas a week and just reheat a slice whenever I got hungry. It's quick and easy, and well, Papa John's is some damn good pizza. But you know, I was wondering if and when I'd get sick of eating pizza, and I think I'm finally at that point. The other night, I had no food in the house, and the thought of getting another pizza kind of turned my stomach.

So I started thinking about my options, one of which was to cook something for myself and then eat off the leftovers for a few days. One of the easiest things I can make is shepherd's pie, which I must say rocks, and it's easy to reheat and just as good. I started thinking about how everyone loves my shepherd's pie (Kit was telling me she'd been sort of craving it because it was just so damn good), and then I also remembered how I can make the most awesome breakfast burritos you've ever had.

Therefore, I'm going to post my recipes, so everyone can make them. They're really, really good.

My World-Famous Shepherd's Pie and Breakfast Burritos

Breakfast Burritos

Ingredients:

Burrito-sized tortillas
6-8 eggs
One red onion, medium-to-large
8 oz or so of mushrooms
Package of sausage (you'll use half to 3/4 of a tube)
Cheese (cheddar or whatever you like)
5 or so potatoes, depending on size and personal preference
Butter
Milk or water
Salt and pepper

- Clean and slice potatoes into relatively bite-sized chunks. I leave the peel on because it's nutritious. :)
- Chop/dice onion into manageable pieces.
- Clean and slice mushrooms.
- Begin boiling potatoes, boil until desired consistency/edibility, then drain and set aside.
- Crack eggs into a bowl, adding in a bit of milk or water and enough salt and pepper to taste. Beat/scramble eggs and then add as much grated cheese as you want.
- Place onion in a pan with butter on med-high heat -- high enough to soften them, but you don't want them to brown
- After a few minutes, put mushrooms in with onions to sautee and soften.
- Before onions are completely soft, add sausage (you want tubed or patty sausage, otherwise you'll have to squeeze the meat out of the casings [insert dirty joke here]).
- Brown the sausage in the pan with the onions and mushrooms. When sausage is fully cooked and brown, add egg/cheese mixture and potatoes to the sausage/onion/mushroom pan. If you cook it in mass quantities like I do**, you'll probably want to do the mixing of everything in a large-ish pot.
- Cook all ingredients in pot/pan together, stirring until the eggs are fully cooked.
- Heat up some tortillas (a nifty trick is to place tortillas between damp paper towels while heating, to keep them moist).
- Scoop a plentiful amount of the egg mixture onto warm tortilla, wrap, and eat.

** I usually make a large amount because I've found that leftover burrito mixture tastes just as good reheated as the first time you make it. If you make enough, you can feed yourself for a couple of days. Also differently flavored sausage (such as sage or maple) can give you different flavors. I really liked the sage sausage in my breakfast burrito mixture.




Shepherd's Pie

Ingredients:

About a pound of ground beef
One red onion, medium to large
Two 5-inch sprigs of fresh rosemary
4-5 red potatoes
Frozen peas
Frozen corn
Butter
Salt and pepper
Milk
Sour cream (optional)

- Set oven for 375 degrees.
- Slice and boil potatoes for mashing.
- Chop or dice onions
- Rinse rosemary sprigs to get rid of any dirt, then pat dry with a paper towel. Pluck all rosemary leaves off the sprigs, leaving the stems and branches aside. Then chop up the rosemary leaves until fine.
- Put rosemary and onion in a pan with butter. Use medium-high heat, as you want the rosemary and onion to just soften, not brown.
- When the onion is soft, add the ground beef and brown. In this case, you don't have to worry about leaving a bit of pink, as you'll be cooking everything more in the oven.
- Add salt and pepper to taste, and when the meat is brown, drain some or most of the fat out, but leave some to retain moistness of the beef.
- Put beef/onion/rosemary mixture in a casserole dish or baking pan, then add frozen corn and peas (don't thaw beforehand). Mix this together in the casserole until you have as much of the veggies as you want, then set aside.
- Drain and mash potatoes, adding butter, milk, salt, and pepper to taste. Basically, make the potatoes as you would normally. My suggestion is to add a bit of sour cream to the potatoes; this makes them infinitely more creamy and delicious than just butter and milk.
- Scoop mashed potatoes on top of beef mixture in the casserole, then smooth them out evenly. You want a layer of beef on the bottom, and a layer of potatoes on the top.
- Place casserole on middle rack of oven, uncovered, for about 30 minutes.
- When the shepherd's pie is done, the potatoes should be somewhat brown, and the beef should be sizzling/bubbling nicely.
- Scoop out and serve.




If you try either of these recipes, let me know how you like the end result!

Monday, October 13, 2003

The Great Ladybug Massacre of '03


I am still having some real issues with ladybugs. I like ladybugs, don't get me wrong, but it kills me to see them come inside my apartment in mass numbers, because even though I keep trying to save them, I'm failing miserably. I scoop up at least ten a day to put back outside, but the next day, twenty or thirty more make their way inside.

I basically get to watch hapless ladybugs twitch and die on my windowsills, and no matter what I do, there's always more. And when you view the entire scene, the 'battleground' of dead and dying ladybugs, you'll understand what I mean... it really does make me think of a massacre.

I'm very much at a loss for what to do, other than closing all of my windows entirely. However, that's sort of out of the question, since my apartment would be way too hot inside to deal with. Besides, I have checked and rechecked all of my window screens, and I still cannot figure out HOW they are getting inside. I even fixed one of them; I pulled it off the window and put it back on with the correct side out, and all of the edges fit beautifully.

It makes me sad to see innocent ladybugs dying in mass quantities, even though I'm trying my hardest to save them and prevent even more tragedy.

On an entirely different note, I have to say how excited I am about school. Not so much the WVU at Parkersburg stuff, because, well, I'm still living in Parkersburg, but my future schooling, degree, and career. I've done a lot of research about my major at WVU. I'll be attending this college, which has almost 18,000 acres of forest for teaching and field work. It kind of cracks me up that if you want to be an interior designer, you'd be going to my college -- after all, I can't imagine more different majors; Agriculture/Forestry and Interior Design?!

Anyhow, because I want to be a park ranger and there are absolutely no Forestry advisors at my school, my counselor (who also happens to be Kit's aunt) and I assumed that I would be majoring in Recreation, Parks & Tourism Resources. However, I looked over the coursework and was a little surprised at how absolutely boring it looks, and also not very near a) what I want to learn, or b) what I want to do when I have my degree.

I was a little dismayed by this, that I'd have to take a whole bunch of completely uninteresting classes on tourism and crap, rather than learning dendrology, silviculture, or any of the science classes.. though, for sure, I would be finished a lot sooner, I think, and the classes would be relatively easy (if not boring). So I wrote to the Forestry division at WVU to ask them what I should major in there when I transfer. I listed what I want to do as a park ranger, and mentioned that I was less interested in tourism than science and ecology.

Well, I had three separate emails from various people in my future department -- one each from the Dean and the Director of the Forestry program, plus another from someone I take to be an advisor, who said she'd send me the information I need. What they all agreed on is that my major should not be Recreation, Parks & Tourism Resources, but instead should do Forest Resources Management, which they said would prepare me very well for work in parks.

All I know is that the coursework looks ever so much more interesting, though of course with the extra science and math, it will be a lot more difficult. But, you know, I don't mind that so much.. I'd much rather love and be interested in what I'm studying, and then doing as a career, than taking the quick route out. But I think this means I'll likely have to get up to calculus, and THAT is going to suck major monkey ass, let me tell you. And civil engineering? Wheeeeee.

Some other bright news I have to report is that my saintly, wonderful, awesome mother is going to pay for my computer to be fixed for my birthday. Yay! This means all I have to do is get that cable bill crap paid off and hopefully I'll be golden. My mom rocks.

I <3 Mom.

Smooches!

Thursday, October 09, 2003

Um... Er... Uh...


Anyhow, I don't know if this is real or not, but it's incredibly interesting. Spiders on drugs? Would NASA actually fund such a study?

Wednesday, October 08, 2003

Amityville Horror, Part Deux


I posted a while back, in July I think, about waking up to an Amityville Horror-sized infestation of flies in my apartment. Well, I got up today to find a repeat of the infestation, only this time, instead of flies -- thank whatever gods may be -- I found an assload of ladybugs.

Yes, ladybugs. I've gone beyond the point of trying to figure out how all these bugs constantly find their way inside my house, now I just have sort of come to accept it. All I know is that there were about eight billion ladybugs outside, both flying around and crawling on the building. I suspect they found their way inside through the gaps around the edge of one of my window screens. In any case, I had at least 20 ladybugs inside my apartment when I got up.

Again, I have to thank the gods for letting it be ladybugs, instead of something like flies or spiders. I mean, I don't mind touching or picking up ladybugs, though of course the creepy-crawly factor is still there. You know, just the mere idea that there are bugs around somewhere inside, you suddenly feel all sorts of random and false itches.

My apartment is right across from a pretty big plot of woods, so I've become resigned to the fact that my apartment building is going to have more than its fair share of insects and small woodland animals (like our bunny and squirrel, and the occasional raccoon). I simply wish there was a better way to keep them out of my freaking house. I tried to fix the gaps in the perimeter of the window screen, but it didn't work.. I'm going to have to put up some masking tape or something over them instead, I guess.

We had our first Delta Psi Omega meeting last night, and there was a total of six of us -- much better than the worst-case scenario I'd been preparing myself for. I figured if I had at least 3 people other than myself, it would be a decent enough start.. but less than that would have been pretty sad, since it's difficult to do improv with a handful of people.

I was nominated and elected President pretty handily. And since Delta (and Alpha) Psi Omega are theater fraternities, they have some cute names for everything. The members of the society are called 'the cast', the President is 'the director' and the Vice President is 'the sub-director'.

I think the biggest surprise of the evening was that Mike, the wiseass heckler from the first class I spoke to, showed up to the meeting. Other than that, I've got someone who's done theater before, Stacy, who is pretty damn good and funny when onstage.. and another guy named Jason who has some definite potential, which I think will shine once he gets more comfortable. The other girl, Nicole, is way too reserved and self-conscious at this point, but maybe we can pull her out of her shell.

We also had a reporter from the school paper sit in on the meeting. He took notes and pictures, so I figure there will be a story in the next paper. Overall, the meeting went pretty well, and I'm quite pleased. I figure once we get started, we'll get more people as time goes on. Plus, we may have our first gig -- one off the Sociology teachers is having a big bonfire on Oct. 28th, and he wants some theater/speech students to come and tell Appalachian ghost stories. That sounds like a lot of fun, though Nancy wants us to do it as improv or something, and I'm not too sure about that.

I keep going to the place to sell plasma; I've been three times now, and every time I go, they can't take me for one reason or another. Once, it was too late (literally by one minute or so), another there was no nurse because she was sick, the last time was because 'the doctor is here' (whatever that means). It's starting to piss me off, because I am in desperate, desperate need of money, and it's about the only thing I can think of, short of selling crack or my body, to make some quick cash.

Last night, I kept thinking about the ENFP stuff I read yesterday.. since it seems like only somewhere between 3%-5% of the population are ENFPs, I suppose that would explain why no one understands me, and why I've never really been able to fit in anywhere. 95%-97% of the population operates differently.

I'm just so special. :D

Tuesday, October 07, 2003

ENFP... Again


ENFP - "Journalist". Uncanny sense of the motivations of others. Life is an exciting drama. 5% of the total population.
Take Free Myers-Briggs Personality Test



Portrait of the Champion (eNFp)

The Champion Idealists are abstract in thought and speech, cooperative in accomplishing their aims, and informative and extraverted when relating with others. For Champions, nothing occurs which does not have some deep ethical significance, and this, coupled with their uncanny sense of the motivations of others, gives them a talent for seeing life as an exciting drama, pregnant with possibilities for both good and evil. This type is found in only about 3 percent of the general population, but they have great influence because of their extraordinary impact on others. Champions are inclined to go everywhere and look into everything that has to do with the advance of good and the retreat of evil in the world. They can't bear to miss out on what is going on around them; they must experience, first hand, all the significant social events that affect our lives. And then they are eager to relate the stories they've uncovered, hoping to disclose the "truth" of people and issues, and to advocate causes. This strong drive to unveil current events can make them tireless in conversing with others, like fountains that bubble and splash, spilling over their own words to get it all out.

Champions consider intense emotional experiences as being vital to a full life, although they can never quite shake the feeling that a part of themselves is split off, uninvolved in the experience. Thus, while they strive for emotional congruency, they often see themselves in some danger of losing touch with their real feelings, which eNFps possess in a wide range and variety. In the same vein, eNFps strive toward a kind of spontaneous personal authenticity, and this intention always to "be themselves" is usually communicated nonverbally to others, who find it quite attractive. All too often, however, eNFps fall short in their efforts to be authentic, and they tend to heap coals of fire on themselves, berating themselves for the slightest self-conscious role-playing.


ENFPs = "The Advocates"