Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Happy Birthday, Peeps

Peepers is 10 years old today

Her name is actually Phoebe, but we call her Peepers or Peeps or Phoebs most of the time. We were told by a vet when she was just barely 2 years old that she would have to be put down within six months because the arthritis in her hips was so bad. Hmpf! You showed him, Peeps. Of course, as he told us that he also gave us some referral paperwork to a place that does hip replacements for dogs. How unscrupulous! How greedy! How mean! How dare he!
All of her joints are pretty much shot, including her front legs now, but she still has good quality of life. She takes doggie medicine for arthritis, and I think it helps some. She is always so happy though. Always has been. She's the sweetest thing you've ever met. She scrunches her face and squints her eyes when you talk sweet to her. When she was little, everything would make her pee. Happiness, pee. Scared, pee. Excited, pee. She grew out of that after about three years, but she still checks all the time to see if she peed. I guess she still has the sensation to pee, but has learned to control it and doesn't know it.
Happy Birthday, Phoebe! Meaty Bones till you throw up today!


I’ve made it my goal to lose 5 pounds by the end of September. I’ve been lax long enough, and I feel like I’m ready. I have to really psych myself up to successfully stick to a “diet.” I’ve done it a million times, so I should know. Five pounds will put me 4 lbs from my ultimate goal. I can knock out five in September and the other four in October. Sounds simple, huh?

My Internet and phones are out again. That happens all the time since we moved here. Usually it’s a few hours before it’s back on. No telling when I’ll actually get to post this. I’m still connected though, thanks to my Blackberry. I love that thing. Worth every penny.

It’s a beautiful day today. It’s supposed to only be about 92 degrees too. In fact, the next week’s forecast has it in the 80s some days! That’s a miracle around here this time of year. (It only made it to 89)

*Update at 10:00 p.m. yesterday

We've had no phone or Internet since about 10:00 this morning. There was apparently a horrific wreck involving a large truck with a boom that took out all kinds of cables and phone lines.

This presented me with the perfect opportunity to try doing an entry entirely by email with my Blackberry. I saved the email with which to do hat awhile back for just this kind of situation. I'm nothing if not prepared. I'm a think-aheader. A thinker ahead. You get my drift. (Obviously, it didn't work)

Do NOT try that so called Starbucks' secret recipe I linked to yesterday. It was awful. I attempted it three different times, adjusting it each time to try and make it work. It just plain sucked. Maybe I used the wrong kind of pectin. I have no idea if there even is more than one kind. It tasted sour.

I made a pot roast for dinner. Didn't eat but two bites because it stuck in my teeth. I hate that. Barnaby enjoyed it though.

Time for magazines. See ya.

Monday, August 28, 2006


Da-yum. I worked all day. I've typed my fingers to the bone today. To the bone, I tell you.

Oh yeah, it rained all day. Holy Cow. And I don't think it hit 100 degrees yet. I'm just full of the explitives and exaggerations today, aren't I?

The real story? I worked from 8:00 to 4:15, and it rained this morning. But it's been cloudy all day. That counts. And I really don't think it hit 100 degrees, but I haven't seen it anywhere, so I guess I'm basing it on just looking out the window or something really scientific like that.

Barnaby is going to be late because they're busting some perv in a park that is going there to meet with a juenile and do lewd things, I'm sure. Those pervs are everywhere. What is it with all the pervs these days, the water? Global warming? Jehod? I don't even know what that last one is for sure or if I even spelled it right.

I'm going to attempt to make myself a super-secret recipe, supposedly Starbucks', for a Frappacino. I've tried to make them before, but it doesn't work. The ice separates from the coffee and it's just not the same. This super-secret recipe has pectin in it. Supposedly that is the super-secret, 007, secret squirrel, double agent ingredient. But you didn't hear it from me. All I know is if they can make it, there's got to be a way to do it at home. I spend way too much money on Frappacinos. They probably cost 50 cents to make. Where is the symbol key for cents? Anybody? Why is there a ~ key and not a cent key? What is a ~ anyway? Does anybody use that? And what about this: ^? What is that? Gah!

Well, I see over on Fox News that they are not filing any charges against that creepy John K*rr guy because his DNA didn't match the crime scene DNA. And after all the hoopla I watched and listened to all last week! I still think the father did it. Momma knew something too.

Watched the Emmy's. Liked it. Conan did a good job. Julia Louie Dryfus wore the ugliest dress. It would have been okay without that black sling-like thing going underneath her unbelievably tiny boobs. What was that thing? How could she look at that in the mirror and say, "Hmmm, I look hot! That black, sling-like thing is gorgeous!" Dumbass.

Blogger won't let me upload a picture of her and her dress. Hate.

Oh, and I think my gallbladder is going bad. I guess I need to go to the d-d-d-doctor and s-s-see what the d-d-d-deal is.

Sunday, August 27, 2006

Nothing in Particular

My favorite race of the year was last night. Jeff didn't win, but this picture is cool so I used it.

Warning: Recipe ramble. If you're not interested, skip the next paragraph.

I spent a lot of yesterday searching for a recipe. Somebody brought my mom and dad a potato dish that was wonderful. I'm not sure if it was au gratin or scalloped. The potatoes were shredded, and if there was cheese in it, it wasn't cheddar. There was definitely sour cream in it though, and the potatoes were real, not frozen hashbrowns. And there was no soup in it either. Try as I might, I could not find a recipe that sounded right. There are a million out there with frozen hashbrowns and soup and cheese, etc. I found a couple of recipes that were close and kind of made up my own recipe with parts of those this morning. It's in the oven now. All of the recipes I found that called for shredded potatoes had you boil the potatoes whole with the skin on, refrigerate until completely cold and then shred them. I boiled the potatoes yesterday and refrigerated them overnight. I added shredded Swiss cheese, Half & Half, sour cream, parmesan cheese, salt and pepper. I probably should have added butter too, but I didn't. We'll see how they turn out. Man, those potatoes were good! I think I went on and on about it at the table. Everyone was probably thinking, "Okay, okay, they're good. Shut up already about the damn potatoes!" Now here I am going on and on again.

End of Recipe Ramble.

Please stand by while I go check the lottery numbers and see if I'm rich....

Nope, not one number. One of these days though.

I just saw on the Fox News Page that they released those kidnapped Fox journalists in Gaza. I saw the video they released a few days ago with them sitting there saying what they were told. Then a couple of days later I saw one that the father of one of them made asking them to let them go, and another one of the wife of one of them doing the same thing. I'm really surprised they let them go and extremely happy for them. Those poor guys were terrified that they were going to be killed. I stupidly watched a video on the Internet of an American being beheaded over there a couple of years ago. It was horrible. I wish I hadn't watched it. What is that morbid curiousity that makes us want to watch something like that? It bothered me for weeks. I just have to push it out of my mind every time I start to think about it. I can't imagine how it would feel to see something like that of your own child or family member. Anyway, I'm happy they let those guys go.

I want to lose 10 pounds. I've been on a plateau for the last four months and stayed the same weight, up or down 2-3 pounds, because of water weight. Ten pound would be easy to lose if I could just buckle down and get serious for a month or two. I'm blaming it on the weather that I don't get out and walk. I almost always walk when it gets cooler. I just can't get out there while it's 104 every day. Even in the early mornings it's high 80s or 90s and humid. Excuses, excuses. I have no excuse for not getting on that treadmill in my 75-degree, air conditioned house. Somebody kick me in the ass. Somebody motivate me. Anybody?

Well, we're off to Wally Mart or Lowes to buy a new showerhead for my dad. He broke the one that Barnaby installed Friday. It was an old one that my grandparents had in their house, and I guess it was brittle and just broke in a million pieces.


Saturday, August 26, 2006

Guess Who?

Guess who bought one of those electric clippers that they use at the haircutting place and tried to give herself a haircut? That is not gray hair, that is my white scalp you see there. It looks much worse than this picture shows. This is the picture of after they "fixed" it at the salon.

You see, when I bought these clippers a couple of weeks ago, I put the guide onto the end of the razor thing that lets you run it through your hair and will only cut it as short as whichever guide number you choose. I chose the #3 because that's what they used last time I got my hair cut. I thought I left that guide attached and put it back in its case. Apparently I did no such thing. Yesterday morning I whipped it out of the case and ran it up the side of my head around my ear. Then I stared in horror at the gash in the side of my hair. Actually, I didn't stare in horror, I laughed but my mouth was hanging open in surprise for the next half-hour or so. I don't freak out about my hair, ever. I just kept shaving in spots, trying to even it out. Barnaby came in there when he heard my shrieks. The conversation went like this.

Barnaby: "WHY DID YOU DO THAT?!!!!"

Me: "I have the #3 on there! Isn't it supposed to keep that from happening?"

Barnaby: "You DON'T have the #3 on there. There's nothing on there. That's just the bare razor."

Me: "Oh. Why didn't you come in there when I asked you to and help me? It's all your fault!"

Barnaby: "It is NOT my fault. I told you to go to the barber."

Me: "But, but... just look at it!" (giggle, laugh, snort)

Barnaby: "Sometimes I seriously think you are retarded. Come on, let's go to the barber."

(We drive up to the hair place on the corner and walk in.)

Me: "My husband did this to my hair. Can you fix it?"

(They all look at him like he's a wife beater. He didn't hear what I said because he has his iPod stuck in his ears. He thinks they are looking at him like that because they think I am retarded. He just shakes his head like, "Yeah, I know. She's crazy.")

The End

Friday, August 25, 2006

Recipe Friday: Crispy Choc Chip Cookies

We are going to pick up my daddy today at the rehab hospital and take him home. Barnaby is going to do some man-stuff for them, like installing some rails and a new hand-held showerhead in their shower. Some people from my parents’ church are bringing them dinner tonight. He’s really doing a lot better and I’m glad. I hate the worrying.

I’ll probably write more later. For now, here’s a recipe. I’ve been lax about the recipes and product reviews.

I made these cookies this morning. They are really good. I’ll probably use this recipe from now on. Rumor is that they don’t hold up well and aren’t very good by day three. I’m not sure cookies have ever lasted that long at my house anyway. I also like this recipe because it doesn’t make too many. Recipe from:

Thin & Crispy-Edged
Chocolate Chip Cookies

1 cup all-purpose flour
¼ tsp salt
1 stick salted butter, melted
6 tbsp white sugar
6 tbsp brown sugar
1 tbsp water
¾ tsp vanilla
½ tsp baking soda
1 tsp lemon juice
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
¼ cup rough-chopped pecans
(That’s right, no egg)

Preheat over to 375 degrees. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.

Thoroughly stir together the flour and salt; set aside. Place butter in a microwave-safe mixing bowl and heat on high until melted. Stir both sugars into hot butter and let mixture sit for about 5 minutes so that sugar can dissolve a bit. Stir in water and vanilla.

Sprinkle baking soda over sugar mixture, but do not mix. Sprinkle lemon juice over baking soda and watch it fizz. Stir the fizzies into the batter to make a light, bubbly batter. Add flour/salt mixture and stir until incorporated. Stir in chips and pecans.

Drop by rounded tbsps onto lined baking sheets. Bake for 8-10 minutes. Mine took 10. The edges should be brown, the middles should be a bit paler. Let cool for about 2 minutes on cookie sheet and then transfer to a rack to cool.

Makes about 20 cookies.

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Kiwi the Parrotlet

My sister's parrotlet

The little bastard pooped on my desk right after I took this picture. Eww. It's green, just like him. I changed my camera back to color. Black & White did him no justice.

Product Review: Rosebud Salve

Rosebud Salve (Lip balm)

I've been wanting to try this stuff for a long time. It's always being featured in magazines as the "must have" product. I finally ordered it, and while it's in a cool little tin and works just fine, I don't see anything special about it. I don't see what all the fuss is about. It would make a neat little gift though because the packaging is so cute and old-timey looking. I ordered it from Sephora for $6. I'd rather have a Frappaccino-and-a-half for that money, but I'm addicted to caffeine, so you decide if that's reliable information or not.

I was all fired up and prepared to keep writing that entry yesterday when I kept being interrupted, first by the phone and then Barnaby coming home early. I had those juices flowing that have been missing for the last couple of weeks. I'm sure you didn't miss anything earth-shattering that would have flowed from my mind and onto the screen. It was nice to have it back though.

As you can see, I'm on a black and white kick with the photos. It took me a half hour to figure out how to change my camera for black and white pictures, so I'm afraid to change it back for fear I'll never get it back there again. You're stuck with b&w until I tire of it. Black and white photos hide all those little imperfections and make you look younger. Lord knows I can use all the help I can get. I've always taken horrible pictures.

My mom and I (my mom and me? I hate grammar) are leaving at 12:45 to go to a meeting at the rehab hospital with the staff. Each of the therapists is going to give us a progress report on Daddy for their particular area. The doctor said it would most likely be Friday or Saturday when he gets to go home. He can't wait, I'm sure.

I may bake some kind of goodie today when we get home. A picture and recipe is surely to follow. Brownies, cookies, or pie? Hmmm...

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

Gag, Spit, Vomit

Before I vomited in a bag
(There is no after.)

Wow, did y'all see that? God left me a comment.

I kind of have a disgusted look on my face in that picture. I wonder what I was thinking? Probably, "It's so freakin' hot in here...I wish that air conditioner would hurry up and work...I like gum...I wonder if the zit on my chin will show up in this picture...I should have peed before I left...Tom Cruise is crazy..."
I got up a little earlier than normal this morning. My BIL came over and left their mini parrot for me to babysit while they're on an Alaskan cruise. I like keeping him. His name is Kiwi. He's in there chirping away right now. I hope I can manage to keep him from being eaten by my dogs & cat one more time.

I did a little work I had to finish and then took myself to Linens & Things to look around. I looked at everything in that store. There was a guy working in there that I wanted to bitch slap. He asked me no less than SIX times if I needed any help. Good God GO AWAY, Geeky Retail Guy! I swear I nearly yelled that the last time he asked me. I ended up buying two stackable, mesh drying racks for sweaters or whatever, a pie crust cover to keep your pie crust from getting too brown, three bathroom rugs (clearance, $3.99, score!), two bath sheets (also clearance, $6.99 & $4.99), and a 2-pack of plastic, bendable cutting board sheets.
Then I went through Wendy's drive-through and got a vanilla frosty and a 99-cent chicken sandwich that I promptly choked on and ended up throwing up and spitting in a paper bag all the way home. Yuck. When I choke on something (because of the Lap-Band), I can't even swallow my saliva. If I do, it won't go down and just builds up down there in a mysterious place that I never knew I had until I eventually throw it up in one big wad. It's not normal saliva. It's really thick and it's extremely hard to spit it out because it wants to hang together as one solid object. It invariably ends up partly in whatever I spit it in and partly on my lips connected with a loooooooong string of saliva. It's like I'm spitting out sticky glue. I know. I'm so sexy.

Anyway, I made it home with my small vanilla frosty, put it in the freezer to harden back up, added some protein powder to it, and ate it.
Barnaby is home early from work. We're going out to dinner. Yes, we eat dinner early like we're 80 years old. Hopefully I won't gag and spit in the restaurant. I hate it when that happens.

Monday, August 21, 2006


Thank goodness I deleted that entry I almost posted yesterday. I wouldn't want y'all to know how whiney and selfish I am. Okay, most of you already do, but at least it's not documented.

Daddy is doing well. He's in rehab and a little depressed, but I guess that's to be expected. He has so much pride and can't stand it that he's getting old and his body is failing him.

Has anybody read the book The Purpose Driven Life? I haven't, but I think I want to at least thumb through it and see what it's all about. I half-ass watched a show about it last night. The first line of the book is, "It's not about you." What? It's not? Maybe we all should read it. The only thing that turns me off is I think it's got a lot of God stuff in it. Oh, don't look at me that way. I'm just not interested in reading that kind of thing. The guy that wrote it is a preacher. I'm just guessing that it has a lot of God stuff in it for that reason. Not that there's anything wrong with that. If you've read it, let me know if it's worth picking up.

Wow. I just made myself sound like a heathen. Short post, but I've got to go work. Later.

Sunday, August 20, 2006

You're Welcome

Wow. I just wrote the wrote the most pathetic blog entry ever. I'm glad I erased it. I think I need therapy.

Thursday, August 17, 2006

Quick Update

Daddy is doing well. He's in a lot of pain, but that's to be expected right now. He should be going to another facility for rehab Friday and staying there for 3-4 days.

I'm using a sub-contractor for the work that has come in, and have been running back and forth to the hospital. I'm happy that it's only 5 minutes from my house. Found out the reason my contacts were giving me so much trouble was because one of them was torn and the other one just didn't fit. It gave me a tremendous headache for a couple of days before we figured it out. They are working great now. I'm baking a cheesecake right now and fixing to get ready to go back to the hospital this afternoon. I think I'll stay home this evening. Maybe I'll even do a real entry tomorrow.

Monday, August 14, 2006


I've been busy running errands all afternoon. Bank, post office, Dollar Store, Starbucks, pharmacy & grocery store and mom & dad's. I even managed to do two loads of laundry. Now I can relax while I'm away most of the next two days for my dad's surgery knowing that I'm not behind on anything. I bought a rotisserie chicken for my supper and got Barnaby a fat ribeye steak. I also made spinach dip, and we have homemade yeast rolls that I made yesterday.

Did I mention that I accidentally cleaned and rearranged my entire kitchen, pantry, refrigerator, cabinets and drawers this weekend? I was only going to do the refrigerator and pantry, but ended up doing the whole shebang. It took all day. Everything is clean and organized. I just have to get used to where I put everything. I open five drawers now every time I need something. Patsy, you would be proud of me. I even went to the Dollar Store and bought stackable bins and baskets and drawers for the pantry. It looks so good compared to when you were here. I wonder how long before I mess it all up again?

I wonder what's up with all the energy the last two days? I didn't realize I had it while it was happening, but now that I'm writing down everything I've done, it seems like alot compared to my normal sluggish goings on. Maybe it has something to do with the fact I can actually eat now without throwing everything back up. By the way, I still have not heard ONE WORD from that doctor about that letter I sent. What a creep.

I probably won't update tomorrow or Wednesday. I don't plan on being here much. Say a prayer for my daddy tomorrow.

Sunday, August 13, 2006

Cool/Not Cool

Rosie O'Donnell
Kathy Griffin
Here are the three women that were voted for as being "cool." I don't think I agree. While I like Kathy and Rosie and think I would like to be friends with both of them, I still don't think they are cool like Dennis Miller is cool. Ya know? Madonna might be cool, but I don't know. She might have that certain "je nais se qua" in person. I don't listen to her music and am not a fan, so maybe I'm just not familiar enough with her to make that judgment.
I know! I know a woman who is/was cool! Kathryn Hepburn! Right? Everybody agree? Do you still think these other three women are "cool" like Kathryn Hepburn was? Why do I even care? Why don't I go on about this for TWO DAYS and get all excited like it matters? Sorry, y'all. I got tunnel vision, I guess.
I have to get back to work now. Yes, I'm working at 8:00 p.m. on a Sunday. My dad is having hip replacement surgery on Tuesday, and I don't want any work hanging over my head while I'm there with him. I'm trying to finish it all up so I can go see him tomorrow for awhile, and then I'll be gone all day Tuesday and probably part of the day every day this week. I may have some long nights/evenings working this week. Or I might just tell everybody to cool their heels and they'll get it when they get it.

Friday, August 11, 2006

My Eyeballs Hurt

I had an eye exam today for contacts and my eyes are still messed up. She put some drops in my eyes to numb them so she could check the pressure for glaucoma and something else. The exam itself was no big deal and didn’t hurt, but after I left the office with my new contacts in, in about an hour my eyes were killing me. It felt like I had grit in my eyes. She said it would be uncomfortable the rest of today so I guess it’s nothing to be concerned about. I took the contacts out and have been putting drops in my eyes every little bit. I go back in a week to tell her how these are working out, and if everything is going well, I’ll get my 6-month supply.

I’ve had contacts before but hardly ever wore them because I couldn’t get comfortable. After about four hours, they start bugging me. I’ve broken every last pair of glasses I own, which is what got me to the doctor to start with, so I have no choice now. I have to wear the contacts or be blind. She wrote me a prescription for glasses, but our insurance sucks and it was going to be $498 for them. Barnaby just paid $350 for his. That’s WITH insurance. The exam cost me $159 today, and the insurance will pick up the cost of 6 months worth of contacts. I’ll be paying about $110 for contact the other six months. It’s still better than the cost of glasses.

Wal-Mart has frames for glasses that start at $36. I may go get some of my old lenses put in a pair of cheap frames just so I’ll have glasses if I want them.

I’m sitting here at 8:40 p.m. drinking a huge glass of iced coffee. Yeah, I won’t be sleeping very well tonight. I wanted coffee though, and nothing else would do. I’m also making granola as I type this. I mixed it up, and have to bake it for an hour and 15 minutes, stirring it every 15 minutes. I love granola, and this is supposed to be the greatest recipe ever. I changed it up a little, substituting dates for the raisins, and using pecans along with the slivered almonds and cashews. It has coconut, maple syrup and brown sugar in it too. Yum.

It was 104 degrees yesterday and today. Help me. I’m afraid to watch that Al Gore movie about global warming. It’s supposed to be a very interesting and entertaining movie, and I’m pretty sure he’s right about the global warming stuff. I don’t like Al Gore (the self-proclaimed inventor of the Internet – riiiiight) from what I’ve seen of him. What a dork. Some people just can’t be cool no matter how hard they try. At least I can fake it. He just looks goofier when he tries to fake it. How did he and Bill Clinton hook up anyway? Now Clinton is cool. He’s a big ol’ cheater and a giant man-whore, but he’s cool. He’s hip. Okay, now I’m starting to sound like George Carlin – another cool guy, by the way.

Other people I consider cool: Dennis Miller (the coolest of the cool), Dennis Leary, John Bon Jovi, Bill Maher (an ass but still cool. I don’t have to like you to still consider you cool. You don’t have to be good-looking either.), Shepard Smith, Anderson Cooper…I can’t think of any women. Are there any cool women? Maybe you don’t refer to women as cool. I don’t know what the word would be though. I’ll have to think about this and get back to you. Note to self…

If you can think of a “cool” woman, leave her name in my comments. Or if you can think of what you call women instead of cool, leave that too. It’s not hip; you can be hip and not cool. Coolness is kind of an essence or something, a feeling you give off. It’s the way you carry yourself and speak. Ya know what I mean?

Man, that granola smells heavenly. My whole house smells like warm oatmeal cookies. Fifteen more minutes, two more stirs, and it’s done.

Let’s see…what else? Oh, I saw an SUV at the grocery store today with “Fit with Freda, Personal Trainer, 555-555-5555” on the back window. I wrote the name and number down. I’m going to call and see how much she charges. I’d love to have someone come help me get started lifting weights and doing cardio. Maybe two or three times a week for a month? That should get me started and motivated.

I’ve been watching two new shows that are on. They’re reality shows, kind of. One is called “The Gym” on FIT TV, and the other is “Workout” on Bravo. They’re both set in a gym with personal trainers, and they’ve kind of gotten me motivated to start something.

Okay, the granola is almost done. I need to go get in my happy place with L.B. and read some magazines. Have a great weekend everybody!

Thursday, August 10, 2006

I Grew A Little?

It takes a lot of nerve for a woman to walk up to a poker table full of nine men who are strangers and sit down to play, especially someone like me who has a bad case of the social terrors. Especially someone like me who didn't have a couple of shots of Jack Daniels before I walked in like I used to have to do before doing anything. But I did it. I smiled, said hello, sat my ass down, plunked a $100 bill on the table and got my chips. I folded the first two hands that were dealt to me and didn’t play. The third hand I was dealt was pocket aces! I couldn't believe my good fortune.

That’s when I really got nervous, surprisingly, and starting shaking uncontrollably. I’m not making this up or exaggerating.

I raised and maybe three people called and stayed in the hand. Nothing significant came out on the flop and with shaking hands I raised again. I couldn’t believe my hands were shaking so badly and it was a struggle to breathe. I couldn’t it stop! I had the best hand you can be dealt, and my body was betraying me. I didn't feel nervous in my brain, but my whole body went into some kind of nervous spasm. All eyes were on me. Do you know how much I hate that?

Everyone folded except one man sitting two spots to my right. It was heads up, just me and him. (Him and me?) I consciously tried to calm down and stop shaking. The dealer laid the turn card face up on the table. Whew, still nothing significant. No possible straights on the board, not alot of one suit, nothing. They were all small cards. I checked, he raised, and I called. The river card was turned up and, to my relief, it was another mediocre card. I checked and he raised me everything I had except $5. I called and raised my last $5. Of course, he called it and we turned our cards up.

Son of a bitch! He had three fours! @#$%^*+$! All the guys let out an audible, “Awww!” They were all very nice and said it was a bad beat and they would have played it the same way, blah, blah, blah, but I still had to get up and leave after having just played one hand. I did it with as much dignity as I could muster and smiled the whole time, but I felt like crap. My adrenalin pumped and my hands shook for another 30 minutes at least. I was so upset.

I got over it and told Barnaby about two hours later that I wanted to get back up on the horse right now or I never would. I marched my butt back into the poker room and sat down at another table. Of course, I thought that whole table of men saw me walk in and stared as I walked across the room, snickering. They didn’t, but I imagined that they did.

This time I was assigned to sit at a table with two other women already playing among the men. I ended up staying at least two hours at that table and left with over twice as much as I sat down with. At least I won my $100 back from that other table. Too bad I couldn't have won a little pride back too.

I’m sure I grew a little from that horrifying, emotionally scarring, embarassing experience. Isn’t that what they always say? You learn something and grow from all the bad things that happen to you?

What a bunch of bullshit.

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

Embarassing Moment #1

Funny story...Bear with me while I give you all the background info first.

When I was about 10 years old, I was playing with my dog, Skipper, in the garage. I was lying on my stomach with my head propped up on my hands. We were wrestling around, and Skipper knocked my hands out from under my face somehow. I apparently I hadn't learned to hold my own head up without using my hands yet and my head slammed down into the concrete, face first, and broke one of my front teeth off. I have no idea why my parents did have me get it capped or something, but they didn't. I walked around the rest of elementary school and part of middle school with a broken front tooth. Yeah, I was attractive. Some boys even took to calling me "Can-Opener." I was mean though and could kick every one of their asses easily. They hadn't gone through puberty or started growing much yet, and I was a tall, skinny, tomboy, tough girl who had lived with a broken front tooth for several years. They didn't call me that very long.

The tooth eventually abscessed when I was in 8th grade, and I had to have a root canal and porcelain crown put on my broken front tooth. But not before my face swelled up from my nose down, making my face resemble an ape. I'm not kidding! I looked like I had my tongue stuck under my upper lip making a simian-like face. You know how you can do that? Go look in the mirror, stick your tongue up there and roll your bottom lip down. You'll look exactly like an ape. (See above picture) I looked that way for at least three days before the swelling went down, except I didn't have my tongue up there; my face was full of infection and puss. It hurt like hell too, y'all.

After a few torturous doctor appointments, it was fixed and I had a shiny new front tooth. No more Can-Opener.

Unfortunately, back then they used metal rods when they did root canals. Back in the 70s, the DARK AGES, before electricity and ...oh, wait. We had electricity. But it was before MTV! It was before computers! After many years, the metal rods broke down or eroded or something up in your gums and caused your gums to appear black and blue or bruised-looking. Okay, it was just a bruised-looking spot on my gums, but still. I was very self-conscious about this and tried not to smile too big and show my gums. Now I had a perfect front tooth, but there was a black spot glaring out at everyone just above it. Lordie, I didn't want anybody to see the black spot on my gums. How gross.

Well, when I was in my upper 20s somewhere, like 28 or so, I was with my two small sons and a guy I had just started dating. If I was 28, my boys were 8 and 6 years old. We were in Grandy's eating lunch when my youngest son suddenly shouted loudly, "Eww, Mommy! What's the matter with your gums? THEY'RE BLACK!!!!"

I thought I would die of embarrassment. I'm sure I mumbled some explanation and quickly changed the subject and acted like I wasn't embarrassed. I probably gave him the old stink-eye too. I could see him keep looking at me, trying to see my black gums again with a grossed-out look on his face. I have no idea what the guy I was with thought. He was probably trying to get a good look at it too. Or he was trying to make up an excuse to run out and never talk to me again. I don't remember. Or I've blocked it out.

I don't have black gums anymore. I had it fixed soon after that. No wonder I never go anywhere.

Tuesday, August 08, 2006

Incontinence, I mean, Incompetence

I haven't talked about the fact that I have a Lap-Band here, and I really didn't want to. It's just not that interesting to people who don't have or need one. I've had issues with it the last two weeks and that's part of the reason I haven't updated. I'm going to throw the letter up that I wrote to my doctor and call it an entry. It will explain a little about it and show you what a fun day I had yesterday. I faxed this letter to him this morning. I haven't heard from him yet. Names have been changed to protect the guilty and in case I want to file a lawsuit later.

Dear Dr. Blah-Blah,

I am extremely unhappy with the events on, and leading up to, August 7, 2006. After faxing you the attached letter on that date, your nurse, Anastasia Beaverhausen, called me to let me know that you would be meeting me at the Fill Center for my appointment at 11:00 to view the fluoroscope pictures and speak with me about the problems I’ve been experiencing for the past four months. She talked with me for several minutes about the possible causes of my problems which I greatly appreciated.

After arriving at the Fill Center for my appointment at 10:30 a.m., 30 minutes early for your convenience, the front desk clerk and initial check-in tech advised me that you were going to personally administer the unfill, view the fluoroscope pictures and speak with me. The front desk clerk called Anastasia Beaverhausen on the phone to confirm this, and then spoke with at least one other person regarding whether you would be there or not. What I heard from their conversation was that you had been at the Fill Center at 9:30 to see another patient that morning, and that person had been 20-30 minutes late for her appointment. The clerk told me that when you were told that I would be there at 11:00 to see you, you told them, “I don’t have another appointment, and I’m not coming back.”

The front desk clerk asked me if I still wanted to get unfilled. I responded that, yes, I did. It was a necessity at that point, not an option, considering I couldn’t even get liquids down, a fact that everyone involved should have been aware of.

I was taken into the fluoroscope room and was asked by Penelope Whippersnapper, the same person who has done my procedures the last three times, what problems I was experiencing. She expressed concern and agreed that it was unusual that I was feeling so tight and having problems with only .5cc in my band. I told her that I could not keep liquids or foods of any kind down before late evening and that I had twice vomited a dark brown, foul-tasting substance this morning. The fluoroscope tech (a male) said, “That’s just bile.” I told them that I wasn’t aware that bile was brown because it has always been a yellowish color when I’ve thrown it up before. The other female in the room who later gave me the barium said, “As long as it didn’t look like coffee grounds, it’s okay.” Penelope suggested that I might want to get my gallbladder checked out by another physician and proceeded with the unfill procedure.

After aspirating everything from my band twice and checking the amount of fill, she said that there was 1.2cc in my band and not the .5cc stated in my records. She said that “someone” must have not aspirated and made a statement about it being “bad math.” She removed .7cc from my band and left in .5cc. She said, “It’s really .5cc this time.” The male tech in the room stated that he had seen a round object, possibly a pill, flush through the opening in my band when the fluid was initially removed and I swallowed the barium. Penelope instructed me to go to the waiting room and drink water. I did so and left the facility after approximately 20 minutes.

I consider “someone’s neglect to aspirate” or their “bad math” to be a serious error, neglectful, and totally unacceptable. My health and the integrity of my band may have been seriously compromised. The effects I suffered over the last two weeks because of this neglect and/or error were not pleasant, not to mention the mental anguish I suffered thinking about what could be wrong, what would have to be done to correct it, how much it would cost, and how I would pay for it.

I paid $15,000 for this surgery and subsequent care. While that may not be a lot of money to you, it’s a hell of a lot to me, and I expect better for it. Four months of the one year of included aftercare has been spent mostly getting unfilled (supposedly).

I do not expect to pay for any adjustments after my one-year mark, October 28, 2006. I expect the included aftercare period to be extended through at least February 28, 2007.

I wanted you to be aware of what happened so that steps can be taken to ensure none of it ever happens again, and I’d like to know if these events were reported to you by the staff at the Fill Center.

Thank you.

Sunday, August 06, 2006

Update Tomorrow!

Sorry you guys. I hate people who don't update their journals/blogs/whatever very often. I'll do an entry tomorrow sometime and try to keep it up. I'm pretty sure I have a busy week coming up with work, but I'll still try to at least throw up a picture or something every day. Ta-ta.

Tuesday, August 01, 2006

Happy Birthday

Today is Barnaby's birthday. We're leaving in the morning to go play in a poker tournament in Oklahoma at Winstar Casino. We have a babysitter for the doggies (thanks, Momma), so we'll be gone all day. Wish us luck. Rots of ruck.

It's Kitty's birthday too. She's 15! Happy birthday, old girl. She's really been a good cat, and she's never been sick. I hope she's around for a few more years.

My mom made Barnaby's favorite dessert: chocolate layer cake with chocolate frosting and bananas in the middle. Weirdo. Mom & Dad and Brenda, Jim & Matt came over after supper for cake and ice cream. Everybody left around 8:00.

After that, I made a recipe I found on the Internet for Chili's salsa. It turned out good, but it's supposed to chill for a few hours so I guess I won't know until tomorrow night if it tastes just like Chili's or not. It was good tonight though, and easy.

I'll be back Thursday with an entry. Be good kids.