Wednesday, November 23

I am experiencing a renaissance of cooking. No, that makes it seem like I have history of cooking, which is not really true. Oh, sure, I've flirted with the occasional recipe--once in my youth I whipped up a whole pan of meringue. No pie, just the topping, and it was delish. There was the ill-advised eggplant stew affair during my vegetarian years. The recipe didn't say to peel the damn thing; is that my fault? Purple stew, not so delish.

Nowadays, I cook about 3 days a week. My speciality is soup. It's difficult to mess up soup, and you can make a "cream of" anything. Soup sorta cooks itself. I am making soup as I type this, in fact.

The main problem with all of this cooking is that Scott won't eat it. He also won't read a book I've recommended or agree with anything I say, so it may be a relationship-systemic problem. I prefer to think of it as a difference in tastes, however. I am a big fan of tomatoes in all thier forms, from a light red sauce to eating one like an apple. I am somewhat adventurous; I like sashimi, for example. I love fresh veggies and absolutely anything with chili powder. Scott likes, well, frozen corndogs. And cereal. Straight out of the bag, because he won't drink milk. Needless to say, Scott is very thin, while I am. . . not.

So, Scott and I either have a fundamentally antagonistic relationship, a practially unsurmountable difference in preferences, or he has cottoned to the fact that soup is a fine vehicle for slow-acting poison. Ooops, excuse me, it's time to go stir.

Tuesday, November 22

I had promised myself I would never do the "I apologise for not updating this blog" post. So, I'm not. I don't apologise. I have proudly not updated this blog. My life, it is too exciting! I am far too busy to entertain you, you people with no lives, who anxiously check this site four, five hundred times a day. "Maybe now!" you say. "Nope, but what about now?!" "Perhaps NOW she'll be back with an entertaining tale or on-point observation." But no, I am illusive. I am withholding myself from you. Perhaps I am even teasing you. What a bitch.

Or maybe I am suffering from a spot of ennui. You know it--that sense that everything just is. Oh, yes, those kittens are cute. Ho-hum. 200 hundred channels and nothing's on (but who am I kidding, I don't even have cable). I could pick up a magazine, but they are so heavy, and all the way across the couch. Could call friends, but what new could they possibly have to say after I pushed all those teeny buttons?

And the internet, she is so, so-how you say?-so empty.

Wednesday, November 16

Decision Time

I have decided to stick with my old job with the promotion for several reasons. (Benefits)

The new counseling job could not promise me that it would last three months, much less the 18 months that the grant could extend. My position would have been to supervise folks who would be going into the community to assess need for counseling services for survivors of Katrina. Here in Hattiesburg, I believe that the time for this sort of service has passed. I was concerned that I woud be doing that for a month or so, and the grant would run out, or worse, that I would feel pressured to show need that wasn't really there to keep the grant going. This does not reflect on the interviewer--he was a very nice guy, and the agency does its best to serve Hattiesburg, I feel. But I know how these things go. The way grants work, you gotta use it or lose it, and that makes for somewhat murky ethical waters.

I feel I've made the right choice for me, right now. If I have a burning desire to go back into counseling, I'm sure I could find a position at a later time. Meanwhile, it's back to the bank job with me. But with benefits!

Friday, November 11

Short Eyes

To the grey-haired gentleman at the public library Monday: You weren't exactly subtle when that 6 year-old girl walked by you as you pretended to read--I think I heard your neck pop when you crained your head around to keep her in view.

And I know a precocious 12 year old in a Catholic school-girl outfit is the stuff of many a sordid fantasy, but really, sir, putting your sunglasses on so you could oogle her a little less obviously was, well, pretty damn obvious.

I would have said something to you like, "Hey, Short Eyes. You need to be watching yourself," but I didn't want to give you a head's up. Maybe this way, parents will have a fighting chance to keep your sick old self away from their kids.

What a week!

Through no fault of my own, I have had quite a great week. Monday, my boss at my part-time job offered me a promotion to full-time with a raise and benefits.

Then on Wednesday, I did finally have jury duty, which actually turned out for the best. I was juror 35, and juror 34 was chosen as alternate, so I ended up with my $40 dollars with very little effort at a time when I can use the dough. (Though the pay had increased from $35 to $40 since my last go at jury duty, as Scipio had mentioned in comments below, instead of writing the check and handing it to us as we left the room, the check, as they say, is in the mail.)

Then, yesterday, I finally had the interview for the job counseling Katrina survivors. This was a job that was billed to me as volunteer work, and probably based on the Mississippi Coast. Turns out, it is a paid position--33.5K a year, and is right here in Hattiesburg. Dude offered me the position before I even left the room.

So, this spate of good news doesn't exactly make for gripping blogging, but I did want to share my good news with you guys.

Monday, November 7

Those who know me know that I read just about everything. I'll read almost absolute trash if there is nothing else. One summer, I even read a few Harlequins just to see if there was anything to the fuss. (Nope. As you'd expect, poorly written, beyond-soft-core porn for women whose little minds have been turned to mush by the idea of romantic love. The same women who, when they heard I was engaged, said "Oh, my God! Now you can have the wedding dress you dreamed of as a child!" WTF?? I never even thought of getting married when I was a child. And if someone were to ask me about getting married, I probably would have said I was going to marry my mom. Needless to say, I am no longer engaged. But I digress.)

Like any good reader, I owe the library money. My fine at the library constantly hovers around the magical $25 mark. Above that, you can't borrow any books, but you can pay it down by $.50 and you're back in business. Once I had a minor, but embarrassing, panic attack when I had no cash and they WOULDN'T LET ME CHECK ANYTHING OUT. (Thank you, Jennifer C., for rescuing me.) I think I will have Scott, my S.O., pay my library fine for Christmas.

I decided to take several days off this week and then realized I have absolutely no money and no real way of going anywhere. It appears that jury duty is a no go, so I'll have 5 days in a row with nothing to do. (Nothing fun to do, anyway. I have tons of chores that need doing, but let's not think about that.) So, I am compliling a list of books to get at the library. (With the rare exception, I no longer buy books; I read so rapidly it makes no economic sense. Plus that whole "no money" thing.) Anybody out there reading anything good these days? I enjoy speculative fiction, short stories in the vein of David Sedaris, mysteries, some non-fiction, and the occasional best seller. I ain't picky.

I would also like to hear from folks who know of good books for adults to read to one another. Scott is a very good reader and I like him to read to me. My father read to me frequently, and some of my favorite childhood memories (that do not involve weddings) are of his reading "Huckleberry Finn" to me on camping trips. I think it is a good bonding experience for children, and is a nice part of a relationships for adults. Finding books that are suited for reading aloud is dificult, however, so please pass your ideas along. One good one to start is The Princess Bride by William Goldman.

Friday, November 4

Not again

I have been called to jury duty. Again. The 4th time in about as many years, it seems. I am the only registered voter in Hattiesburg, apparently.

I am one of the rare folks who doesn't really mind this. Usually, it's called off at the last minute anyway, and even if it isn't, it is interesting to watch the legal system first-hand. And though it sucked more when I had a "real job," and the $35 per diem that jury duty pays got taken by my job in exchange for them giving me the time off, now that I am working part-time, I will actually earn a few more bucks that day than usual.

The one other time I actually had to go, I was pretty far back in the pool and never got near to being called. I sat and watched the slow, slow wheels of justice turn for about 5 hours and went on home. But even if I am first in line, I feel sure that I will never sit on a jury. I am far too liberal for the Prosecution, and far too smart for either side. I don't have to come up with sob-stories about how I have two cancerous children, a Draconian boss who will fire me for missed time, or a heart condition that simply cannot tolerate the excitement of traffic court, to be dismissed.

Too bad, kinda. I envision myself as the lone hold-out on a nationally important case brilliantly arguing arcane points of law and slowly bringing the others to my point of view, saving the unjustly accused from death row. So you see why I won't be sitting on a jury any time soon.

From the "word I used this week I am most proud of" file: Moribund. (Second definition) Whooo!

Tuesday, November 1

Random Me

Did this year's Halloween last forfuckingever for you? Damn October 31st on a Monday. Folks I know started being Halloweenies last Thursday. (And damn that Daylight Saving Time, too. How stupid is it that it changes right before Halloween, cutting down on the daylight in which those tikes in dark costumes are visible.) However, I did have the pleasure of seeing both scary Mike Tyson and creepy Ozzy Osborne on late-night tv last night. They both made more sense than I expected. This is faint praise.

I am subscribed to a service called "Who you Should Know," which each day gives me a profile of a different country and its leader. I should be more interested in this. I thought I was more interested in this. But I glance at this each day and delete it more quickly than I do a come-on from a Nigerian prince. I am a cretin.

From the "Things I have learned the hard way" file: licorice is a natural laxative.

For every person that tells me that they like this blog, there are three others who have promised to never speak to me again or perhaps even bring down some bodily harm on my little person if I say the word "blog" ever again. Blah blah blog.

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