Sunday, December 5, 2010


Photo courtesy of The Juneau Empire

Ok, I feel like I need to start by saying I love Juneauites.  It’s true.  I do.  I love living here and all the  things we lack that many people complain about don’t really aggravate me all that much.  I figure the tradeoff is reasonable.  However,  I do have one frustration about this small slice of wonderful. I hate Juneau drivers.  They are the worst drivers I’ve ever had to share pavement with.  Weather conditions, good or bad, seem to make little difference.  I theorize it’s because most have been limited to this small stretch of road most of their lives.  When you have to share the interstate with people driving 80 or 90 mph you figure out real fast that staying alive requires  a person to pay real close attention to what the hell is going on and make decisions accordingly. 

Unfortunately, drivers in Juneau are bad on the rare occasion the roads are dry and the sky is clear.  For example, why is the slow lane the fast lane and vise versa?  Seriously people if you’re not keeping up with the flow of traffic get out of the passing lane, yeah that’s the left lane just in case you were confused.  Though this is a common point of frustration things are fundamentally worse when the roads are impaired by weather. 

FYI—four-wheel drive does not make you invincible.  I can't help but find humor in a shitty, self-satisfied sort of way when I’m driving down Egan mid winter and I see three or four trucks or SUV’s in the median.  Are you freakin’ kiddin’ me?!   Just because you have the ability to put your vehicle in four-wheel drive doesn’t mean you’ve been endowed with invincibility.  C’mon, use a little common sense.  If there’s ice on the road and a nice layer of water on top of that ice shit’s still slick even if you’ve got control of all four wheels. So, don’t be speeding and don’t be weaving in and out of traffic. 

Same thing goes for studded tires.  Those little metal studs are only gonna do so much and then some common sense is gonna have to kick in.  Slow the hell down!  It's better to be late then dead, right?  If it’s icy and windy and the majority of traffic is driving 35-45 mph there’s probably a reason and when you slide into the ditch I hope you’re not sitting there confused wondering why.  Here’s the thing.  If you want to risk your own life that's entirely up to you.  But, don’t be a selfish and risk the lives of others. 

Don’t get me wrong.  I’m certainly not the poster child for all things DMV.  When the roads are dry I enjoy driving over the speed limit too.  Speeding is in my genetic coding, but I’ve learned to be an interactive driver and do my best to stay smart and not risk others around me.  You can’t simply drive offensively you have to drive defensively and to some degree anticipate the choices and actions of the drivers around you.  That can be challenging here because some of the drivers are entirely unpredictable.  However, despite my predilections towards speeding, when it comes to increment weather I’m uber cautious.  I’m not looking to hurt you and I’m not looking to hurt me.  If that means I have to get out of bed and sacrifice that extra thirty minutes of glorious sleep, I will.  The bottom line is I want to stay alive and if that means I need an extra ten to fifteen minutes worth of cush to get to work downtown so be it.  I’ll just need 16 oz of Deadman’s instead of my usual 12 oz.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

I've Officially Downed the Cult Kool-Aid

So, I’ve officially converted and become a full on Apple geek.  I bought my MacBook Pro a year ago this January and will never go back to using a PC.  Well, except at work.  Mostly because I have to and believe me I complain on a daily basis about the Microsoft glitches I’m consistently face with.  If I thought I could convince the Dept. of Labor to convert I would.  Maybe I’ll start working on that. 

After falling knock you on your ass in love with my MacBook Pro I started thinking about whether or not I’d take another leap and purchase an iPhone 4.  I went back and forth about whether it was something I really needed.  I didn’t.  Despite this conclusion I arrived at I finally bought one Tuesday and dear god I don’t know how I lived without it all those years.  It’s so responsive.  If people responded as efficiently as my phone I’d spend far less time frustrated.  I have access to everything I could ever want right at my fingertips.  There is an app for everything.  I’ve already downloaded a mess of them.  When I say you can get an app for everything I mean it.  Among others some of those listed in the “Top 25 Free Apps” are the following: iDork (a game featuring a stick-figure character), Find My iPhone (anywhere remotely), Facebook (of course), Female Orgasm Ideas (in case you need some—I ideas or orgasms), iBooks (in case you need some quick reading during long waits—anywhere?), Google Mobile (because all answers are on Google and now you can have answers at all times), and many more useful-or-useless apps.  Once I decided I needed to purchase an iPhone I had to decide what size to get. 

Did I really need 32G of memory in a phone I didn’t really need in the first person? Nah, 16G would be plenty.  Of course I bought the 32G.  That way I’ll have plenty of room to store useless apps in a phone I don’t really need—32G worth of room in fact.  And it’s a damn sexy piece of electronic brilliance.  Not to mention it carries all the music I own.  It’s a computer, a book, a game center, an iPod, and anything else I can dream up.  All that hype is true and now I’m ruined for life.  I’ve downed the cult kool-aid and there’s no turning back.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Not So Magical Pancakes

In honor of my grandma and simply for the sake of nostalgia I attempted to get artistic in the kitchen this weekend.  My grandma used to make these magical breakfast creations.  She could create art with pancake batter like I can a pencil.  This particular comparison was the beginning of my downfall I discovered.  You see—I consider myself a reasonably artistic person.  I’ve enjoyed drawing since I was small child.  Although I don’t delve into the world of sketching much anymore it’s one of the things that come easily to me regardless of how long it’s been since my last artistic boost of inspiration.  It was this inspiration and need for nostalgia that led me to morning pancakes. 

I have fond memories of my grandma being in the kitchen every morning I'd wake up at her house during my childhood.  I would come down the stairs in my less than conscious state and she would smile at me and ask if I was ready for breakfast.  Generally the response was some barely audible mumbling she was somehow able to interpret.  She’d give me a little time to adjust to the morning and would then graciously ask what I’d like to eat.  Though my options were numerous, for the most part as a child, I asked for pancakes.  Then she’d ask me what I’d like on that particular day because my grandma didn’t make your standard and albeit average round pancake.  No, she made elephants, giraffes, Mickey Mouses, suns, horses, dogs, flowers, and whatever else my imagination could come up with she would attempt.  And more often than not she’d succeed and she’d do it freehand.  Not using those molds they have nowadays.  After they were finished she’d cover my creatures in butter and syrup.  Then her and I, and occasionally Mrs. Butterworth’s, would have a nice chat over pancakes.  That’s how I remember it anyway.

However, when I began my pancake making adventure first on Thursday and then again this morning I thought it’d be simple. I’m artsy.  I’ve been known to be creative.  I can make something great!  It wasn't that I needed all the pancakes to be masterpieces.  I thought just one magic pancake on top of the stack could take me back, if only for a short time.  Well, clearly I had misguided confidence in my artistic ability with batter or in the assumption that the magic she created was simple and could be performed by anyone.  I couldn’t even pull off a Mickey Mouse.  How hard is that?  It’s basically three circles.  I tried a couple more times that morning.  Then I made a feeble attempt this morning under the umbrella excuse that my batter was too thin when I tried it Thursday.  Nope.  Nothin’!  Clearly the magic my grandma created wasn’t small after all.  Or, maybe she had the aid of a child’s imagination and therefore the ability to see works of art in the smallest of things. 

Whatever the reason for my botched attempt it wasn’t quite the same as when I was a child.   My grandma wasn’t there to laugh and talk with and so I ate my deformed pancake and remembered fondly in silence.  While Mrs. Butterworth looked on quietly.

Saturday, November 13, 2010

I guess I'm an adult now...

I made my first “adult” purchase.  An appliance.  Or appliances as it may be.  I bought a washer and dryer on Thursday.  A couple weeks ago when we were shopping around for them I was all kinds of excited about putting an end to my laundromat days.  However, the day before I went in to make my big purchase I had this gross realization.  I’m an adult.  It was horribly unsettling.  Sure, I’ve had lots of adult moments over the last decade-ish since I moved out of my mom’s house.  I’ve had multiple apartments, paid my own bills, purchased my own cars (albeit used cars), and done various adult things.  Hell, I even have a Monday through Friday, 8 to 4:30 job, but something about purchasing an appliance brought reality crashing in.  The moment one has the ability to purchase an appliance and does so instead of doing something more adventurous with said money must embrace their reality.  Damn it!  I’ve officially put down roots in adulthood. 

You know all that crap we thought as kids?  The stuff that made being an adult so fantastic?  The stuff we couldn’t wait to be a part of?  Things like going to bed whenever you want to?  Yeah, well I fell asleep in my recliner at 8:30 Thursday night (it could have been the depression of becoming an adult).  So, sure I could stay up late if I wanted to, but I’m too damn tired.  Or, being able to eat dessert whenever you want?  Well, sure.  I sure can eat dessert whenever I want to, but now I have to consider whether or not it’s going to give me heartburn or put me into a sugar coma and then determine if it’s worth the pain and suffering.  Not to mention every damn calorie lodges itself in my ass, thighs, or stomach.  Or, that we can buy whatever we want whenever the mood strikes us?  Yeah, well sure if we paid all the freaking bills, bought food for the next couple weeks, and put gas in the car.  Sure, we can buy whatever we want.  You wanna know what I bought?  A freakin’ washer and dryer!  Oh—dear—god.

But, for the record—it’s a damn fine set, they’re sexy front loading, energy efficient, quiet motoring, cleaning machines.  See!  This is precisely what I’m talking about.  This adulthood crap sneaks up on you.  Well, enough ranting, me and my adult self will be washing my clothes in the comfort of my home from here on out.  And tonight, maybe I’ll have me some dessert after I put the whites in the washer.

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Fruit of the gods...

It’s that time of the year!  No, I don’t mean the “holiday season.”  I mean it’s the time of year when I can go to the store and purchase one of the most profoundly opulent gifts of nature, the pomegranate.  Some people feel the work it takes to seed a pomegranate is more trouble than it’s worth.  These people are fools.  Ok, I may be a bit judgmental, but pomegranates are a divine decadence.  If you don’t believe me ask the gods.  After all, the pomegranate has been the fruit of the gods for centuries.  Not one god, but many gods, many religions.

Many religions see the pomegranate as religiously significant.  In Judaism the pomegranate is one of the Seven Species and some Jewish scholars believe it may have been the forbidden fruit in the Garden of Eden.  Some believe the number of seeds in a pomegranate to be 613, the same number of mitzvot in the Torah.[1]  Judaism is only one of the religions who believe the pomegranate to be spiritually significant.  It’s depicted in many religious paintings, murals, and stained glass windows.  Often a burst pomegranate symbolizes the abundance of Jesus suffering.  Islam too, believes the fruit to be one grown in the gardens of paradise  and the appearance of the pomegranate is frequent in Greek mythology as a symbol of fertility as well.  It is undeniably the fruit of the gods.

If its symbolism as thee divine fruit isn’t enough to convince you that pomegranates are worth the time and effort it takes to seed and eat them then maybe the nutritional value will.  It’s commonly stated that some “beneficial properties of the fruit are the prevention of both heart disease and some forms of cancer.”[2]  Pomegranates are rich in antioxidants and have the ability to act in similar ways as aspirin for people with heart problems.  In addition they may have the ability to reduce inflammation and ease the suffering of arthritic patients.[3]  

Not to mention they simply taste extraordinary, nearly orgasmic.  So if the divine significance or the health benefits aren’t appealing enough than the intrigue of orgasmic pleasure shall surely convince you because let’s face it everybody likes sex.  Hey, sex appeal works for the advertising industry why can’t it work for me and my argument of how worthy this fruit is of your time.  I mean c’mon we know the gods liked them and we know the gods most certainly liked sex.  I’m just sayin’ it’s worth considering.


Tuesday, October 12, 2010

I'm a Healer

am grossly prone to falling, tripping, cutting, burning, and breaking.  I have crashed nearly everything I’ve ridden or driven and I am capable of tripping over a flat surface.  One time I was walking across the parking lot at St. Vincent’s, tripped, and fell into the box I was carrying.  Yes, into.  I’ve rolled my ankle so many times I barely notice it anymore.  Oh, and I tripped a couple weeks ago walking up a wheelchair ramp and mangled the inside of my arm and bruised my knee.  Unfortunately, this same knee, I’m pretty sure has a shattered kneecap due to a graceful move five years ago.  I’m pretty sure it shattered because it’s not there anymore.  Don’t believe me? Ask me and I’ll show you.  Yep, that time I was walking down the stairs thought I’d hit the last step, but surprise, surprise there was one left.  You see it was in an old building with a massive wooden door that had probably been standing for 30 or 40 years.  It was quality product.  Well, when I landed with all my weight on my knee against the door something was bound to give and it sure wasn’t going to be the damn door that had been standing for the last three or four decades.  Goodbye kneecap.  It bruised, swelled, and was sore to the touch for about three months.  Did I see a doctor you ask? Hell no.  We don’t DO doctors in my family. We walk it off.  Even if the walk is a little gimpy for awhile.  Well, if those two incidents, not to mention the hundreds of other times I’ve landed on that knee when I either slipped, tripped, or crashed wasn’t enough.  I’m pretty sure I partially dislocated it Sunday.  If the previous injuries hadn’t done so this certainly insures long-term arthritis.  You want to know what makes it more obnoxious an incident?  It’s not as though I have some grandiose story explaining the injury.  I wasn’t skiing the Swiss Alps, hell I wasn’t even skiing Eaglecrest.  Nope.  I was getting into the freakin’ car.  Yep, that’s right.  I was getting into the car.  My shoe slipped. Then sure shit my knee popped right out or in, inward toward the other knee when it bent unnaturally that way.  I have a fairly high threshold for pain, but I may have dropped the F word a time or ten and even shed a tear, maybe two.  The balance of my accident-prone self? I’m a fast healer.  My bruises disappear rapidly, the elbow I dislocated and was told would never straighten does (never wasn’t an option), and the gimpy knee I’m getting around on now?  Well, it’s still gimpy, but like I said I’ll walk it off.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

I Can Caulk!

Ok, so I consider myself an independent woman.  Those who know me can attest to this fact.  This independence has cost me occasionally over the years because I frequently learn things the hard way.  However, it has been beneficial in many ways as well.  For example I found myself yesterday stripping old caulking from the shower in my apartment, which was mold infested, and re-caulking thereafter.  One of the challenges of being independent and “doing things myself” is that I frequently find myself jumping blindly into ventures to which I’m unfamiliar.  Like caulking.  For example I’d never used caulk in my life until I moved into this apartment last month.  I’ve learned that caulk is the fix-all right after duct tape.  You can use it to patch holes in the wall (as long as it’s the kind you can paint over), you can use it to glue things (such as bathroom tile), and well you can use it traditionally to keep water out of places it doesn’t belong.  The hole-plugging I adapted to just fine.  I haven’t tried gluing anything just yet.  And as far as keeping water from going places it shouldn’t? We’ll see.

One of the challenges of my caulking adventure was the application.  You see I have some distinct OCD tendencies.  We got it all taped off so initially I had nice—straight—lines when I pulled the tape up last night just before bed.  This morning I got up to see how it looked and determined that it was too thin in some spots.  Of course I thought to myself “I won’t need to re-tape” because I was just gonna fill in some of the thin spots.  Well sure shit my nice pretty lines aren’t so pretty and as far as deterring water?  Like I said we’ll see.  However, I can say I caulked my own shower and it’s something I can add to the list of things I’m capable of doing myself even if it isn’t pretty. I’ll get over it.  Though my OCD self and I did think about starting over until my roommate practically pushed me out the door at the mention of such an idea.