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7.29.2008

"It's gonna be a long week."


Courtesy of the brilliant and hilarious www.nataliedee.com

Cop-out Quotes

Sometimes when I'm feeling a little bit turned inside out and I don't quite have words, I steal other peoples' and just post some quotes/recent funny convos I've had. It is a bit of a cop-out but still enjoyable so oh well!

We were born
To stumble
And to learn
In a stardust
Covered universe
-Jakob Dylan

"Hey, my mom sent over a whole bunch of homemade enchiladas. Stop by for dinner?"
"Sounds tasty. Does that mean you're Mexican?"
"Um, no. It means I love Mexican food. And that my mom rocks. Duh."

(taken from www.overheardinminneapolis.com I may or may not have been the one who submitted it to the website. I'm not sayin, I'm just sayin)
"But If It’s True…:
Woman across the hall: 'Goldy Gopher has jock itch! (Pause) I shouldn’t say that about my favorite mascot.'
-Overheard by 'Good to know…'at a U of M office

"I have a feeling the two sugar packets I just dumped on each piece of toast somehow negates the health factor of using whole wheat bread."
Andy absorbed my early morning statement. "Do you have scientific research to back up that hypothesis?" he asked seriously.
"Yes," I responded authoritatively, "the growth rate of my ass confirms it undeniably."

"Hollywood is a place where they will pay you a thousand dollars for a kiss, and fifty cents for your soul." - Marylin Monroe

Caley: I made smores this weekend!
Dan: On a campfire?
Caley: Of course, what else do you make smores on?
Dan: The campfires here are kind of sparse soo here in philly we call our campfires "microwaves"

(Campfire at the cabin that Kelsey and I made without the help of any of the 7 boys who were there with us. It survived for hours through two thunderstorm downpours. We were proud.)

7.28.2008

Little ones


Next door I have two little ones (and there is another on the way!) F is 5 1/2, S just turned 2 and I got to babysit them on Friday. Their parents were so thrilled to have the evening off they could barely get past their excitement to make plans. When I showed up during mac and cheese with hot dogs they still didn't know what they were going to do but the girls and I had our whole evening planned out. First stop: backyard swing set. Then it was over to my house to visit Ebbie, a walk to both of Groveland's playgrounds with a detour to say hello and goodbye to the wooden panda statue out front, and back home for chocolate ice cream cones. Humidity and carting around S's hot little body had worn me down so I was more than happy to put in an Eloise movie. Thankfully, the girls were just as tuckered out so were both curled up on my lap half asleep when their parents came back. It's hard to say who had more fun, us or them, but I can't wait to do it again. Maybe I'll start trading babysitting services for sidewalk shoveling. Hmm...that could work...

7.24.2008

Fridge Poetry

Our office has fridge poetry magnets in it. I don't think we are unique in having this but we also have a fairly large staff of writers. This makes for some pretty darn good fridge poetry, at least I enjoy it. Here are a few of the interesting ones:

I am being Run and you're a crabby stone.
build spin tips in the dorm
A vapid geek is in my frazzled hair and has no cunning!
Baby you're a scary grumpy social hack
In our dogtired community we surf to steaming naughty intellectual music
Tawdry U of M dream team and stadium squirrel.
my great onyx can languish about austere amalgam

and my current favorite:
laugh so pretty some will...

Maybe I'll steal the line and write a full poem from it. Hard to say, but I just think it is sweet.

7.23.2008

Talents (or lack thereof)

I have many talents. The following things are not among them...
Driving directions. Giving them, following them, reversing them to get home: I can do none of these things. Nothin. I can navigate subways in foreign countries with no problem but thank goodness for Garmin here on American roads.
Choosing Tupperware for leftovers. I'm generally pretty good with spacial relationships but for some reason I never pick the right size Tupperware for the amount of food I have left. I either pick one too small and my pasta spills over the edges, or an uneaten fillet looks tiny in my giant plastic container.
"Name the artist" music game. I realize this isn't an actual game, just a made up one people play in the car but I am still awful at it. Doesn't matter if you pick songs off the radio or an ipod, my brain cannot make the connection between the music I hear and the name of the artist who is playing it. Cannot. Can. Not.

If you need someone to McGiver a ripped dress back together with hair pins and painters tape, I'm your girl. Need help choosing the perfect shade of paint for your living room? Pick me! Pick me! There are many situations in which my random skills come in very handy. But if you need to know how to get somewhere, help packaging up food, or the name of the band who plays that one song...I am not your girl. Do not pick me.

7.22.2008

Dublin, please.

I would like to go back. To Dublin. Five days there two years ago just isn't going to do it for much longer. For some reason being greeted with, "Top of the mornin'" today threw me back to the steep back staircase in our hostel, with its dust coated windows letting in cold morning light on our way down to the church-like breakfast dining hall.

Why the first thing I think of if the soggy toast we choked down and the freezing cold showers we suffered through instead of the view from the hills at Howth on the ocean or the rows of centuries old Celtic crosses in the country cemetaries is beyond me.
I do know that of all the places I've visited, Dublin has felt the most comfortable, despite our accomodations. Maybe thats because of all the room they leave in their days to eat hot thick foods, drink cold thick beers, and take naps. MMM.
We almost didn't make it out of Dublin after missing several busses and then having to stop at every corner on the way to the airport to pick up business Irishmen on their way to work and drop off drunk Irishmen on their way home from the pubs. Our exit through Dublin International looked like the McCallister family in Home Alone II but eventually we boarded our plane and headed back to the paella, metro systems, and sandy heat of Madrid. Maybe the fact we almost missed our flight was a sign, maybe I was supposed to stay in Dublin. Guess I'll just have to go back to find out...

7.21.2008

Family musings: Part II

Grandpa John knew every good jazz bar in Ventura County. He also had just about every radio station in town on speed dial because when they used to do trivia contests, he would be the first to call in with the answer and win radios, concert tickets, flashlights, or whatever other treasure they were giving away. Before the internet, Grandpa was my Google.
It always seemed to me that he had been pretty much everywhere during his travels, especially when he came to my gradeschool show and tell with a map and pointed out the stops on his latest around the world tour. That day he made me the coolest kid in class.
In the top drawer under the kitchen TV he kept a book with movie reviews in it so he could decide which ones to tape on one of his 8 VCRs. I think I inherited my feeling of always missing something important on another channel while watching one show from him.
Driving with Grandpa John was always nerve wracking because he refused to use his blinkers in order to avoid burning out the light bulbs. It made rides to and from LAX quite the adventures.

Cleaning out the basement after he passed away, we found things that just made us smile and shake our head, so typical Grandpa: an entire closet full of boxes with reciepts taped to each one, just in case something ever needed to be returned; plastic bottles of "Military Special Vodka" from the army base stashed in bookshelves so Gma wouldn't tsk tsk him; a false book with a compartment inside to keep secret things, like coins and hair combs.

About five years ago Grandpa wrote an autobiography titled, "Call me Lucky." In it he talks about how he accomplished everything he wanted to during his lifetime. Not everyone can say that. By no means was he perfect, but I think we were the lucky ones to have him around as long as we did.

We miss you, Gramps. Bon voyage.

John McClair Cowart
Dec. 3, 1922-July 15, 2008

7.13.2008

Sometimes you've gotta laugh...

Paul has been keeping the whole family laughing this weekend which has been greatly appreciated by all. Kate has had a few good ones too...

"Katie, do you have a hard time with math? Like, when it is a negative number do you round up or down?" -FPCIII (aka lil bro)

"Check out that door. 'AUTHORIZED PERSONNEL ONLY. (Soiled linens).' Good thing they have a keypad lock, too. The sign might not be enough." -FPCIII

Mom: That wheelchair guy was all the way up on the third floor when we left the hospital 4 hours ago. And he just made it down to the parkinglot.
Katie: He must have taken the stairs.

Grandma at dinner: I don't get it, what character are you quoting now?
Katie: No, Grams, thats just us. You have funny grandchildren.
...agreed.

7.11.2008

Pins and needles. And peaches.

A combination I would not recommend:
Sewing while watching tv with a bowl of peach slices on your left and a box of pins on your right. (Think about it.)
Trust me.

7.10.2008

Bon Jovi Driving Test

I have a friend who is funny, but she does it without even trying to be. I mean, how many people do you know who use "Jiminy Cricket" as their explitive of choice? Priceless.
Somehow we recently got on the topic of drivers lisences and she told me the story of when hers expired without her even knowing itTwo days after her birthday she went into the office to get it renewed and they told her it had expired a year and two days ago, on her last birthday, and that consequently she would have to go take the written test again and was not allowed to drive until then. She threw a fit but let her mom drive her to the testing facility (there was a police station attached to the renewal office), where they set her up with a test and let her have at it. She failed. By one question. At this point in the story, her arms had been flailing around for close to 4 minutes straight and I thought she was going to tip over from her enthusiastic reenactment. She almost shouted at me, "And do you know what the one question was? The one that made me fail? Slippery when wet! BON JOVI! How the heck is that the one I got wrong? Jiminy Cricket..."
.

7.08.2008

Family musings: Part I

In a "sometimes-you-embarrass-me-so-much-I-don't-want-to-be-seen-in-public-with-you-but-I'll-still-always-say-I-love-you-back-even-in-front-of-a-crowd-of-strangers" kind of way, my family is crazy and wonderful at the same time.
First, I'm going to tell about my daddy (and yes, I am ok with being an independent, 23 year old woman who still calls her father Daddy.)

Saturdays Dad always scooped me away in his little, red, collectors car to give Mom time off. Those days used to be filled with special rides to visit uncles, buy fresh squeezed orange juice, and check in with the Como Zoo polar bears. Back then I was so little that I thought he was larger than life, especially when I got to watch him shave from the bathroom counter top before anyone else woke up. Now, I'm big enough to know for a fact that he really is larger than life, especially when I watch him try to unclog the icky floor drain in my basement in his polo and boat shoes.
No one forgives fast than my father. When we used to get in fights, circa braces and side ponytails, I could barely slam the door to my bedroom before hearing a quiet knock accompanied by him saying, "Cal? I'm sorry. Lets talk."

I could keep going about sweet, goofy Frank...how he always calls ducks "duckies" while somehow maintaining his Italian dignity; the baby pictures of all three of us kids perpetually wedged in his wallet, ready to be shown to strangers at a moments notice; the fresh squeezed orange juice he still shows up with on Saturday mornings in the little red car...but I think this old picture says more than I ever could.


Thanks for indulging my moment of sentimentality.

Battles lost: Sprinkler and Mouse

Sprinkler
Last night, despite the dewpoint of 70, I decided my lawn was past due for a trim. Out came my Toro mower, Toro electric trimmer, and Toro electric blower. After finishing up with all of those toys I decided to tackle the Toro sprinkler timer on front hose. (Sidenote: I am quite pleased with my free hose. It was left behind by the former owners along with crusty grape jelly in the fridge, 1950's shoe polish under the kitchen sink, and a broken yellowed washing machine in the garage. Oh well, free is free, right?) Part of the grass on the slope down to the front sidewalk wasn't getting any water so I had to adjust nobs, settings, and levels to compensate. Twenty minutes later, soaked from head to toe and with bloody knuckles, I decided the score was sprinkler: 1 me: 0.
Mouse
Today I told Dan that I got a new mouse for my computer and he was impressed that all you have to say to IT here is, "I need a new mouse. Cordless." and they give it to you. I also told him you don't even have to tell them that the reason you don't like your mouse is because your stilletos keep getting caught in the cord when you spin around too fast to say hi to someone which results in you almost falling off of your chair about...20 times a day.

7.07.2008

Laughing at work

Sometimes I laugh so much at work I'm positive someone is going to come see why I am finding a feasibility study for the School of Dentistry so funny. Then, they might find that I can't stop laughing because people keep sending me quotes from www.overheardinminneapolis.com or e-cards from www.someecards.com (which I have already linked to but is worth mentioning again).
Here are some that had me in tears clutching my stomach during that late afternoon lull...
They’re Not So BadSmall Child (in shopping cart, pointing at shelf): Oh look, Mommy, yummy marshmallows!
Mom: No, Henry, those are dishwasher tablets.

Middle-aged balding man to friend as fireworks begin: Dude, I just love the plate tectonics of these fireworks.
Friend: You mean pyrotechnics?? Are you stupid?

I Left Mine In My Other Purse
Older woman shouting: Somebody on this bus got a skunk! Who’s got a skunk in their purse?!


Appropriate after going shooting at a random quarry up north this weekend...

And finally, in honor of big sister's one year wedding anniversary!

Sloppy Joes, OH NO

My 4th up north was great, minus a slightly traumatic pre-dinner incident at The Bird House. See, I have some unresolved issues with sloppy joes. Yes, you heard right. Sloppy Joes. It all goes back to the days when I used to kick and scream the whole way to daycare and then purposely tried to be as much of a brat as possible so Mom would let me stay home. One day at lunch they served sloppy joes which I didn't like but was forced to eat mine, against my will. Just to show them who was boss, I cried so long I made myself throw up. Haven't had a sloppy joe since. Until this weekend.
Sitting in the kitchen, Mrs. Bird leaned over the granite counter raving about how amazing her sloppy joes are. "It has mustard, ketchup, vinegar...all sorts of good stuff!" Could we list a few more ingredients that I hate? Instead of voicing my true opinion, I graciously said, "Oh that does sound great, I'm just not a huge sloppy joe fan. If I were I'm sure I would love yours!" Smooth, right? I thought I was in the clear. NOT so.
"Oh no, you must try mine! People who don't usually like them love my special recipe," she said.
"No, I believe you! I'll try them later?"
Shaking her head with pursed lips at the absurdity of someone not liking sloppy joes she firmly stated, "You must try them. Now." With that she dug into the mucky mixture, scooped some up, and started pushing the nose of the mounded spoon toward me. I opened my mouth the tiniest bit, trying to keep some control over the amount I had to consume, but she was determined to shove in the entire utensil full.
"Oh, wow. That is really, wow." Blinking furiously to keep my watering eyes from betraying what a hard time I was having choking it down I half smiled/half grimaced.
"Isn't it the best?" Then she sweetly apologized, "Sorry they are cold but I just couldn't wait for you to see how great they are."
"Great. They are. Great. Even cold. Yeah."

7.03.2008

Things I love right NOW

Casual Friday apparel on a Thursday.

This article.

Hot tubbing at the Saints game, especially with amazing friends like this:


My official work mentor Pam who encourages long lunches and sends me fun websites.



Perfect 4th of July weather:



Hilarious free e-card sites.

Taking mental work breaks to play Scrabulous with my sister and brother-in-law (who I think might be cheating).

The daisies on my desk from an event almost 3 weeks ago that are still be-au-ti-ful. See?


And, obviously, my new camera.

7.02.2008

Peony syrup?

Well, you learn something new every day and yesterday I learned that peonies produce a sappy nectar, kind of like maple trees. I wonder if peony syrup will be the next big thing? The ants seem to love it.
This bud has been hanging out on my desk for a few weeks, sapping away.

Spring at the Stanford house was very exciting this year. Since I had never been there for that season I had no idea what would sprout and bloom, when and where. Turns out my peonies are white, I have a tiny bleeding heart plant, and a hillside of lillies of the valley. Who knew?

7.01.2008

Bad luck?

How much bad luck is it when one's black cat spills salt all over the kitchen table?


"What, me?" -Ebbie

p.s. I got a new camera...This means more "illustrated" posts. Whoot whoot!

Bless ME

When someone sneezes I say, "Bless you," without even thinking about it. To not say it would take a conscious effort but here at the office, I seem to be in the minority. No one has ever said it to me when I've sneezed here and it makes me feel lonely in a way. During my travels I noticed that many other countries say nothing when someone sneezes (Spain for example) but this is Minnesota for cripes sake! People are supposed to be nice here. So, since it is so automatic for me to say something when I hear an ACHOO and no one says it for me I have taken to saying, "Bless me" in the silence that follows my sneezes. Its not quite the same, so maybe if you ever randomly think of it during the day you could send me a mental "Bless you!" just to make sure I'm covered. That would be great. Thank you in advance.
 
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Sidenote by Sidenote Cal is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License.
Based on a work at www.sidenotecal.com.