Thursday, November 13, 2008

*THIS SPACE HAS BEEN EATEN BY WEBSENSE*

I had a really good post here a mere hour ago. A post that was a good 5 paragraphs long. And funny, man was it funny. There was even dialogue. Real, honest-to-goodness dialogue. And when it was finished and I realized it was one of the most glorious posts I had ever written, I clicked "Publish Post". And WebSense ate my words.

What's WebSense you ask? That's the internet filtering software that monitors the company network at my place of employment. This is not a post against monitoring company internet usage. I understand why they do it and even though sometimes it seems a bit extreme, it is very necessary. What I can't understand is why, if you are going to block me from posting to blogger, why would you even allow me to log in to blogger, click on the "create new post" button and spend 30 minutes typing it in. Why not just block blogger as a whole?

WHY DO YOU TORTURE ME WITH YOUR RANDOM BLOCKING? YOU ATE MY WORDS AND NO MATTER HOW HARD I TRY I CANNOT GET THEM BACK.

p.s. this post brought to you from my unfiltered home network

Saturday, October 11, 2008

A Thank You For An Old Friend

On August 23, 1988 I met Lisa for the first time. I was 17 years old and had just moved into my new dorm room at college. It was the first time I had ever really been away from home. I was an overweight teen with low self-esteem, had lived a fairly sheltered life with few social engagements outside of school hours, was naive & extremely timid. Lisa, on the other hand, was 5 years older than me and already had plenty of life experiences. She was outgoing, confident & vibrant with the greatest sense of humor. And she was determined to force me to talk to her that day. Her family had just dropped her off at the dorms and left....and it was her birthday. Suffice it to say, we became fast friends. I absolutely idolized her because she was everything I always wanted to be.

After the first few weeks, I began going home with her to her parent's house about 4 out of every 5 weekends instead of going to see my parents. I became very comfortable at their house and was quickly treated as part of the family. Being exposed to the dynamics of a family that was so different than mine was amazing. I knew that my parents loved me, but the atmosphere around my family home was basically formal. Kids were to be seen and not heard, etc. Between my new exposure to a family that loved to talk and have fun together and everything I experienced while hanging with Lisa, Brandon and our other friends from college, my basically blank personality got a chance to develop itself. At the time I didn't realize how much of an impact Lisa was having on my life. We were in college together for 2 years and then kept in touch with visits afterwards for years. I started getting less of a chance to visit as the years went by because I was living and working hours away. Lisa eventually married and had 2 kids and I was able to see them a few times while they were both little, but eventually we fell completely out of touch due to some major crap going on in my life. The last time I remember seeing her or any of her family was the winter of 96. But 2 years ago I accepted a job about 20 minutes away from the town where Lisa and her family still live. I thought about her often, but hadn't tracked her down yet.

Then a couple of weeks ago, while at my company picnic, I recognized Lisa's mom standing across a crowded room. I almost talked myself into passing by and pretending not to see her, but luckily I chose to step in front of her and get her attention. We talked for a few and she seemed very excited to see me. In fact, she pulled out her cell phone and called Lisa so I could talk to her immediately. Hearing her voice after 12 years was crazy. She sounded exactly the same and was able to recognize my voice without me telling her who I was. We exchanged cell phone numbers but were both busy at the moment of our chance encounter, so Lisa said she would call me over the weekend. A few days later we talked for a bit and she invited me to meet her and her sister and their husbands at the bowling alley. I had wondered all week how different they may be. What would they look like? Now that we're all old, would they act old & stuffy? Would they be all prim and proper instead of the wise-cracking, foul-mouthed people I loved? But all my worrying was for nothing. Age hadn't changed anything. It was amazing seeing them and I immediately discovered that I still felt completely comfortable around them. But the best surprise was yet to come.

A week later I was invited out to see her house and do some more catching up. Lisa & Larry showed me around the house and land and Larry bbq'd some kabobs while we visited. They are still an extremely close family, so by the end of the night her kids had gotten home, her sister and one of her nieces came over and her mom was there. Everyone was in the kitchen and they all fell into the old routine I had seen so often 20 years ago. Teasing each other, laughing, high-fiving, everyone talking at once, complete chaos. I had to take a step back because I suddenly become overwhelmed with emotions. I looked around and watched all the different interactions. Lisa's kids act exactly the way I expected them to and Lisa is exactly the type of parent I expected her to be. I know it probably sounds weird, but for the first time in a long time I felt at home. And that's the moment I first realized how much influence Lisa and her family had on the person I am today. The humor and affection they so freely shared with me all those years ago helped transform me from a timid, naive 17 year old into someone who loves to be surrounded by fun and strives to show her friends and family how much she cares about them. I should have thanked her years ago, I just never realized. But better late than never - Lisa, I want to thank you & Shelly and your parents for everything you guys have ever done for me, even when you didn't realize you were doing anything. I love you all and I hope we don't have a 12 year gap ever again.

Friday, October 10, 2008

Creepy....Yet Cool

Click on the picture to read the article associated with it.

Thursday, October 09, 2008

My Favorite Time of Year

Yay! It's finally October, my favorite month of the year. The weather is awesome. There's a crispness in the air that makes me just happy to be alive. The trees are turning colors and looking beautiful. Arts & Crafts Fairs and festivals abound. And most importantly - Halloween is on the way. It's my favorite of all the holidays. I love horror movies, costumes, jack-o-lanterns, witches, and everything else associated with it. This year I have plans to spend Halloween night watching scary movies with a good friend of mine. We're going to eat Halloween themed junk food and sit on the couch all night in our costumes. That way, when little kids ring her doorbell for trick-or-treating we can freak them out.

This weekend is Mt. Vernon's Apple Butter Making Days. I will be there bright and early Saturday morning. Hope to see you there.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Tribute to Miyuki

Our kitty Miyuki is being euthanized tonight. She has always been a sickly kitty and about a week ago she had a very minor seizure. Then again last night she had another seizure. This one was very violent and she did not recover from it very well at all so Scott stayed home with her to take her to the vet (it's technically his kitty, but I loved her as my own). Before they got to the vet I guess she had another seizure. Vet kept her and said he would call later. He just called. Miyuki has luekemia. She won't be coming home. I'm just glad I made sure I loved on her before I went to work this morning. I had no idea she wouldn't return. She was 4 months old this week.

Here's some pictures of our precious little girl.




Sunday, September 07, 2008

The Return of Britney

In the archives of this blog you will find at least 3 posts that pertain to Britney Spears. But this post will be the first one in which I actually have something positive to say. We have all watched Britney fall to pieces over the last few years and slowly destroy her career and family (and nearly her life). Finally, at the beginning of this year, she was diagnosed with a psychological disorder and began a proper treatment. The past several months have been filled with rumors of her progress. I don't consider myself a Britney fanatic, though I do enjoy her music if if happens to be on. But I have been anxiously waiting for the MTV Video Music Awards to see if she's really better. For her sake and for her children's sake, I was hoping she could overcome her illness.

Tonight was the night of the award show. MTV had been airing teaser commercials featuring the show's host, Russell Brand, and Britney. Then rumors started flying that Brit would open the show. And she did. The show opened with a skit featuring Britney and Jonah Hill (from Superbad) and even though the skit wasn't that funny - those MTV writers aren't always as clever as they think they are - I was immediately thrilled to see that Brit appears to be doing great. She not only looked hot and has gotten back in shape, but there was a clearness in her eyes that I hadn't seen there in at least 4 years. She seemed genuinely amused with being there, she had an air of elegance about her. I don't know how to explain it, can't quite find the words, but there was just something about seeing her tonight which makes me believe that she has completely turned her life back around. She apparently has a new song out called "Pieces of Me" that was released a couple of months ago. Strangely I don't think I've heard it yet, not sure it's getting any airtime at the moment on the local stations here in Springfield. But the video won 3 awards and Britney accepted each award with grace and sincerity. I was glad to see it.

I'm proud of you Britney for surviving the bad times. I hope your health continues to improve and you can regain your relationship with your children and family.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Wordless Wednesday

I have decided that every Wednesday will now be "Wordless Wednesday". Which means that I will now simply post a random picture that I have personally taken and no words will be included in the post(aside from this particular Wednesday where I have to explain what "Wordless Wednesday" means). The pictures I choose will hopefully spark some sort of emotion all on their own - whether it's laughter, curiousity, sadness, etc.

So, ignore all these words. Let's post the first picture.

Thursday, August 07, 2008

It's A Boy!

My youngest sister is pregnant with her first child and yesterday during an ultrasound she finally learned the sex of the baby. It's a boy! I didn't really care either way. I couldn't be more excited if it were a whole litter of kittens. I just love babies and I can't wait for my new little nephew to get here. I've already named him JD. Isn't that cute? Of course his mom & dad haven't named him yet, but I'm sure they will grow to like the name I have decided on. And now that we know it's a boy, I can stop buying yellow blankets and white onesies and get down to some serious shopping for the little tike. OMG! Now I can go buy baby shoes. He is totally getting a pair of newborn Nike's.

Melissa had good timing because I've been working at my "super awesome" job where I earn a good paycheck for the past 2 years. The 2 nieces and 3 nephews I already have were born during my years of working at a "crappy sucky" job where I barely made enough money to feed myself. So I wasn't able to buy as much when the babies were born. But I've already got a huge storage container setup in the closet of the spare bedroom so that I can start buying items slowly and saving them all up for the baby shower we will be having. JD isn't due until late December (Christmas baby!) so I've got plenty of time to buy some cute little outfits.

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

"Closer" by Ne-Yo

This is my current favorite song - turn it up!

Monday, July 28, 2008

OMG, I'm Old


I'm starting to feel old. Plus I'm single and have no kids and I can no longer deny that I probably will never have kids. I'm approaching my 38th birthday, so time is running out. On top of that, I have issues related to poor health which are likely to cause me to have trouble conceiving a child to begin with. It just doesn't look like it's going to happen. I can accept that. Don't get me wrong, I would love to have my own child. But if I never get that chance I know I will be fine. For one thing, I have already decided that I want to be a foster parent - as soon as I get my finances to the point where I am able to support myself in my own place without a roommate.

Realizing I am getting old, combined with the recent decline and passing of my grandpa, have gotten me to a point where I'm feeling very sentimental and loving. I want to just pull everyone in close to me and spend as much time with my family as possible. Not just time, but quality time. I want to be all mushy and cheesy and tell everyone I love them every 5 minutes. I desire hugs.

So it really sucks that I have noticed myself becoming a cranky, nagging butthead. I seem to have lost control of my mouth completely. You know you've got to be irritating everyone else when you actually irritate yourself. I find myself venting to family members about what other family members do that frustrate me. NOT COOL. And for some reason I keep sticking my nose into business that does not concern me, such as what everyone elses kids are doing. NOT COOL. It's like I think everyone should raise their children by my morals and standards. But there are several things wrong with this: a) I don't have any children so I have no experience in raising any b) not everyone has the same morals and standards as everyone else, but that doesn't make them wrong c) each child has a different personality and has to be handled differently to a certain degree d) they are not my kids so as long as they are not doing something that will hurt them or someone else - it's none of my business.

I don't know why these things have become an issue with me. I'm not someone whose unhappy or depressed. I don't even get frustrated very often. It's just that I seem to be suffering from sudden (thankfully short) bursts of crankiness that result in me popping off at the mouth and then 10 seconds later being apalled by what I just said. And embarassed about it, sorry for it, etc. Maybe it's simply stress from everything that's been happening. Maybe it's because my best friends are my cousins and siblings instead of someone outside the family and I have held in stuff that I should have been venting because I didn't want to talk about family to other family. It seems like the most plausible cause for my recent crankiness is just because I've let the tiniest of things build up for sooooo long that it is starting to bubble out on top of any little thing it can grab hold of. Maybe I should try to find an outlet where I can vent about these little things before they build up and become so hard to control. I don't want to use a journal because I would hate for someones feelings to get hurt if they found it and read it. I can't do it on the blog because some of my family reads it. Any ideas? Who wants to meet me for coffee every Wednesday at 4:00 so I can get each week of my chest?

Monday, July 21, 2008

In Memory Of Grandpa

This is the song Grandma requested be played. It's one that her and Grandpa always loved.

"Beyond The Sunset" by Hank Williams

Should you go first and I remain to walk the road alone
I'll live in mem'ry's garden dear with happy days we've known
In spring I'll wait for roses red when fades the lilacs blue
And in early fall when brown leaves call I'll catch a glimpse of you
Should you go first and I remain for battles to be fought
Each thing you've touched along the way will be a hallowed spot
I'll hear your voice I'll see your smile though blindly I may grope
The mem'ry of your helping hand will buoy me on with hope
Beyond the sunset oh blissful morning when with our Saviour heaven is begun
Earth's toiling ended oh glorious dawning beyond the sunset when day is done

Should you go first and I remain to finish with the scroll
No less than shadows shall ever creep in to make this life seem droll
We've known so much of happiness we've had our cup of joy
And memory is one gift of God that death cannot destroy
I want to know each step you take that I may walk the same
For someday down that lonely road you'll hear me call your name
Should you go first and I remain one thing I'll have you do
Walk slowly down that long long path for soon I'll follow you
In that fair homeland we'll know no parting beyond the sunset for evermore

Wednesday, July 09, 2008

Rude People: My Fault Or Theirs?

Yesterday, I stopped into a convenience store for the sole purpose of getting myself a fountain drink. I specify that so you will be able to picture me walking into the store and heading straight over to the soda fountain. No pauses, no distractions. Straight to the soda fountain. I didn't even pause to gaze longingly at the donuts. Seriously. I'm very proud of myself.

Once I arrived directly in front of the machine I did pause for a few seconds to make sure they have Diet Pepsi and to decide how monsterous I want my cup to be. Keep in mind that I was NOT standing with my belly pushed up against the counter. I was actually about an arm's length away. I find it's easier to manuever that way. Maybe I'm crazy. If I were bellied up too close I would have to lean back just to get the cup filled up.

Can you see me there? Just getting ready to reach out and grab a cup? Now picture a big, sweaty, unattractive man wearing a bandanna headband and a muscle shirt suddenly appear next to me. Before I even registered he was there, he was between me and the soda fountain and was filling a cup. Never looked towards me or acknowledged my existance in any way. And when he was finished getting his drink he just stepped away and was gone. This is the sort of thing that happens to me all the time. In fact, after I finally got my own soda and paid for it I was following a couple of blokes out the door and they didn't even hold it open and make sure I cleared it. Just let it slam against me as I was halfway out.

I've always just kind of shook my head and wondered why I inevitabley seem to find the rude people. But I'm starting to think it's my fault as much as theirs. I just seem to be one of those people who blend in with my surroundings and don't really stand out for any reason. Maybe the sweaty guy wasn't being rude and cutting in front of me yesterday. Maybe he didn't notice me. I never speak up for myself. It might have made a difference if I would have said "excuse me sir, I was here first". Although who really says things like that? Honestly. I mean, I know there are people who will speak up. But about something so petty as getting a fountain drink? Doubtful. Except for the assholes of the world, of course. But my point is, I do try to stay out of peoples ways and I am a very quiet person. I'm always mindful of politeness and manners and I make sure and avoid any type of confrontation. I know I am very easy to overlook because even my own mother talks over my every sentence, as if she isn't even aware I'm speaking at all. It's been happening my whole life. So is it my fault? Do I need to wear obnoxiously bright colors and START SPEAKING IN ALL CAPS? Or are there just way too many rude people in the world?

Wednesday, July 02, 2008

Poetry

I absolutely love reading poetry, although I admit it's a habit I seem to have strayed away from and do not devote enough time to anymore. For that matter, reading in general has slowed down for me. Referring to reading books, of course. I certainly spend a lot of time reading the internet, I just don't think that has the same quality. Either way, thanks to Amy's post I now have poetry stuck in my head and I thought I would share with you what 3 of my favorite poems are.

"The Raven" by Edgar Allen Poe. It's too long to post here in it's entirety.

Once upon a midnight dreary, while I pondered, weak and weary,
Over many a quaint and curious volume of forgotten lore,
While I nodded, nearly napping, suddenly there came a tapping,
As of some one gently rapping, rapping at my chamber door.
"'Tis some visitor," I muttered, "tapping at my chamber door —
Only this, and nothing more."


"Trees" by Alfred Joyce Kilmer.

I think that I shall never see
A poem lovely as a tree.
A tree whose hungry mouth is prest
Against the earth's sweet flowing breast;
A tree that looks at God all day,
And lifts her leafy arms to pray;
A tree that may in summer wear
A nest of robins in her hair;
Upon whose bosom snow has lain;
Who intimately lives with rain.
Poems are made by fools like me,
But only God can make a tree.


And last, but not least - a poem by Stephen Crane that no one seems to know the exact title of. Apparently it came from a collection called "The Black Riders and Other Lines". Some people (including me) call this one "The Heart" while others call it "In The Desert". No matter the title, it somehow speaks to me very powerfully.

In the desert
I saw a creature, naked, bestial,
Who, squatting upon the ground,
Held his heart in his hands,
And ate of it.
I said, "Is it good, friend?"
"It is bitter -- bitter," he answered;
"But I like it
Because it is bitter,
And because it is my heart."

Thursday, June 26, 2008

CATS & A Kitten

Seeing the production of CATS this week at HammonsHall was such an amazing experience. It was 100 times better than I ever imagined it would be. Rum Tum Tugger was my favorite character, followed closely by Mr. Mistoffelees. This was my first time ever seeing a live performance of a Broadway production and I can tell you right now that it's a darn good thing I don't live in New York because I would spend all of money going to the theater. I seriously can't even find any words to describe how awesome the whole thing was. Now I'm going to have to be better at budgeting my money because I will definitely be getting tickets for a lot more of these types of events.

The only thing that was disappointing about the night was that photographs of any kind were not allowed. I totally expected no flash photography since that distracts everyone, but it shocked me when they announced that no photos were allowed at all. I had really been hoping to get some good shots to brag about. The next day I did come across someone who had blindly snapped a few pics and ended up with one that shows a bit of the cast. I will post it here, but keep in mind that it was not I who took an illegal photo, just happen to know the person who did.



As an extra bonus, when I got home that night I got to meet the brand new kitten that Scott brought home. She is so tiny and precious. Her name is Miyuki (pronounced me-you-key) which is Japanese for "deep snow". I love everything about her but I especially love that she has 2 different colored eyes. One blue and one green. Here's a picture showing the eye color. She's still really timid right now because she's in a new home and she's so young. But once she warms up to us a bit I will be able to get a lot more pictures.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Time Keeps On Ticking

No one likes it, but it is inevitable - we all get older every second of every day. It sucks. Sucks to realize how old you yourself have gotten. Sucks even more to see the people around you deteriorate. I have 3 sets of grandparents and for the most part they have all been in fairly good health. I do have one grandpa who's been in a nursing home for about a year because of back and hip issues. Grandpa Henderson falls too easily and he lived alone, so he decided the nursing home would be the best place for him to be. My Grandma and Grandpa Rose seem to be hanging in there okay. Grandma has health issues: she's diabetic, unstable on her feet and prone to falling, recently suffered a heart attack that left no permanent damage. But Grandpa is able to take care of her and they live next door to my parents, so they are in good shape.

But they all just keep getting older. Now my Grandma Henderson is unable to get herself around and can't keep her medicines straight. My parents have to stop by twice a day to dispense her pills to her and make sure they witness her taking them. They've been talking with my Aunt about finding a nursing home for her. She's no longer able to live alone.

And yesterday I received news that my Grandpa Beeson was being taken to the hospital again. He suffered a major stroke 2 years ago that really affected him and his health has gotten increasingly worse since then. Now they've found a slight bit of congestive heart failure. With that diagnosis and all the other health issues he's been having, the doctors have suggested that he be admitted into a nursing home. He is simply requiring too much care for Grandma to continue taking care of him. They admitted him into the hospital for 3 days, but during that time a decision has to be made about where to locate him when he's released.

I never have wanted to get old. I've always been afraid of being old and alone. I don't want my family to see me crippled up and feeble minded. It's not fair that one day someone will be sitting in a hospital waiting room faced with making the decision about whether I get to go home or not. It's a horrible decision. Who's going to be upset the most? Who's going to be the most burdened by it? It sucks. But time doesn't care, time keeps on ticking.

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Shakespeare In The Park

A new co-worker recently hired at my office has turned out to be just what I needed when it comes to experiencing some culture. Not only do we get along really well, but she is interested in going to the same types of events that I am. On June 5th, A.J. and I went to Jordan Valley Park and enjoyed one of the free showings of "A Midsummer Night's Dream". It was my first time visiting the park and was also the first time I've gotten to enjoy any type of theater presentation since moving to Springfield. We had a great time. The show was fabulous. In fact, a few days later A.J. and I ordered tickets for the opening night of "Cats" which is coming to Springfield for a 2-night showing on June 24th & 25th. I am so excited. I'm hoping I get some great pictures and I promise I will post them here.

Until then, here's some pics from the Shakespeare Festival:







Thursday, June 12, 2008

Hulk Hogan Sighting!

I was at a 1st grade boys summer baseball game this past weekend in Washburn, Missouri and was shocked to see that Terry "Hulk Hogan" Bollea was watching the same game. The Hulkster loves his baseball.




P.S. - this is not really Hulk Hogan.

Wednesday, June 04, 2008

Yep, You've Heard It All Before

I'm going to start blogging again. But this time I'm even more devoted than last time. Primarily because I seem to be experiencing an increase in my social life so I should have plenty of new stories and pictures to share with you. And not just the normal, boring "family adventure" pictures. My upcoming adventures include a Shakespeare presentation, the travel version of the Broadway musical "Cats", and possibly a renaissance festival.

In fact, I think I'll throw some new random photos in now.

Recently saw Skillet in concert. They rocked!




I have also been to the Butterfly Palace in Branson, MO

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Nosy Neighbors: What Can You Do?

Quick, name the 1 thing that sucks the most about spring and summer.

That's right, mowing the lawn. I know, I know, some people actually enjoy it. But those are probably the people who own fancy riding lawn mowers and don't have anything else to do on the weekends. If you own a push mower and you would rather be playing WoW, them mowing is not fun at all. The atmosphere at my house concerning how the yard looks is fairly relaxed. We like it to look nice and don't want it to be trashy, but at the same time the yard is never going to be mowed twice in one week and will never win the "nice lawn" award. It's just not going to happen.

Right now the grass is roughly 6" high. It hasn't been mowed yet this year and is right on the verge of needing it but doesn't actually look bad yet. The first mow of the year is always the hardest; we try to prolong it as much as possible because once you start you have to continue to mow regularly until the grass dies. But now we have been thrust in the middle of a lawnmowing war.

We have a new neighbor. One of those sweet, innocent-looking old ladies who reminds you of your grandmother and always ends up being hateful and a trouble-maker. She has lived next door approx. 2 months now and in that time she has paid to have a privacy fence installed in the back yard, has paid someone to come in and do landscaping, has planted a row of hedge between her house and ours, etc. She obviously enjoys being outdoors because she is always out in the yard inspecting everything. As expected, her yard has been mowed several times this season already by either a family member or maybe someone she pays. Either way, she does not mow her own yard, it is done for her.

Two weeks ago, I had my first contact with the grandma next door. I had seen her out in the yard on several occasions before, but had never made eye contact or tried to speak to her in any way. On this particular day, I had just pulled into the driveway with Marshall and Dillon (twin nephews) who I had gone to pick up so they could spend the weekend. We got out of the car and she was at the edge of my yard attending to the newly planted hedge. I accidentally made eye contact and she waved. She sweetly said "hello" so I said "hello" back to her. Then her face peeled back to reveal the demon lurking beneath the surface and fire flew from her fingertips as she said "your yard is starting to get a bit high, needs to be mowed". This was 2 weeks ago, trust me it wasn't high enough to be worried about. But because her yard had been trimmed neatly down to a mere 1/4 inch of grass, she expects our yard to be the same so that it pleases her.

Well, because of all the rain and the laziness (and because we were annoyed that this old lady is obviously going to be a pain-in-the-ass) it hasn't been mowed yet. As I said earlier, it's approx. 6" - which is not too tall for a yard. We are nowhere near having a shaggy yard. But I'm afraid we may be headed that way. Last night the doorbell rang, it was the demon lady from next door. She came over to inform us that we need to mow our yard because she saw a snake in the grass and she doesn't believe we want snakes in our house, therefore we need to mow our yard immediately.

Are you kidding me? I highly doubt she saw a snake in our yard, she just wants the damn yard mowed. If she did see a snake it's not because our yard is unruly but because we live in a brand new subdivision that was nothing but fields and woods 18 months ago. But, I don't believe she actually saw anything. She just has nothing better to do than pay someone to keep her yard pretty and then be upset because nobody elses yard looks the same. She's obsessed with our yard and has apparently convinced herself that we are ignorant bastards who have no intention of ever mowing our lawn and so it must be her duty to continue informing us that it needs to be done. Gah!

What she doesn't realize is that by complaining and making an issue out of this, she has shot herself in the foot. Yes we're slow starters when it comes to the first mow of the year, but we do mow. And we like our yard to look nice. But now that it's become an obvious issue for the nosy neighbor next door? Well, somethings got to be done about that. So, help us decide. We cannot refuse to mow the yard, because the city probably has some sort of ordinance that they would eventually ticket us for. We can always just wait a few more weeks before mowing, but she might file an official complaint between now and then and she would think she won. So, what can we do? I'm thinking that we mow the entire yard except for the strip next to her yard. A suggestion last night is that we go out and gather garter snakes to put on her patio and in her yard so that she quits using that excuse. We could accidentally mow down her hedge. Or we could refuse to weedeat around our side of her privacy fence and let the fence get all overgrown. What do you think? Any other ideas?

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Cobwebs & Tumbleweeds: Clean Them or Leave Them?

Sure has been quiet around this page recently. I hate to see it so dead, makes me sad. I was so excited about blogging when I first started. I'm not sure what happened. I think the biggest contributing factor is that I started blogging while I was working 3rd shift and spent 10 hours at night alone, answering 2 or 3 phone calls an hour. Blogging was a way of killing time. It kept me occupied and helped to stave off boredom. Then, as I transitioned to second shift the phone calls increased and I actually had living people working with me that I could talk to. So, the posting decreased slightly. But now....?

Now that I'm on day shift, the phone calls are crazy. I don't have much free time at all. And I went through several weeks of all blogging sites being blocked by the new internet security they put in place on our work computers. So I eventually got used to not reading my list of daily blogs and not posting one of my own. With the arrival of my laptop I am able to visit those sites once again - if I bring my laptop to work, that is. Since my desktop crapped out on me at home, I use my laptop at home every night. And I don't always feel like packing it up and carting it with me to work every day. Yet another reason I can use to justify the cobwebs and tumbleweeds accumulating on this site.

Excuses aside, I now have to decide whether or not I'm going to try and revive the blog. I have the desire to keep it going. I'm just not sure if I will make the time and put forth the effort. Another worry I have is that I'm getting ready to start a weight loss challenge at work and I may inadvertently turn this into a personal diet blog. That's not the way I envisioned my blog when I first started it in 2006. In fact, when I first began posting I was hoping it would one day be a blog that hundreds of people from all over the world wanted to read. Obviously that hasn't happened. But I do know there are a few of you out there who do check in on Rosey's Ramblings on occasion. What do you guys think? Did I ever at some point write anything of interest? Would you like to see me give it another go? Does the (hopefully) occasional diet entry bother you?

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Lacking My Vitamin D

I know that as soon as summer gets here I will be griping constantly about the stupid sun glaring in my eyes and the freaking heat melting me, but I gotta tell ya - I am ready to see some steady sunshine. I know we've had several nice days over the past few weeks and some fairly decent weekends, but I really, really, really need to see 2 - 3 weeks of bright sunshine with no rain or clouds in sight.

Studies have proven that the lack of sunshine in the winter leads to a deficiency in vitamin d and that, in turn, can cause depression and fatigue (as well as other, more major issues). And I am definitely feeling the affects. One way to help restore vitamin d into your body is to drink plenty of milk. Normally milk is something that I do drink a lot of, but sitting here thinking about it has made me realize that I haven't had very much milk at all for several weeks. And I sure have felt tired and cranky the past few weeks. So what have we learned? We have learned that I needs me some sunshine AND that I'm going home right now to drink a big ole glass of ice cold chocolate milk.

Monday, March 10, 2008

Girl Scout Cookies and Frozen Custard

Seriously, what could be better? I've already decided that on my way home from work today I'm going to Andy's to get a Thin Mint Concrete. It's been a rather stupid Monday, so now I have something to look forward to that will make my day better. And once I start spooning all that cold, creamy, minty deliciousness into my mouth, I will forget it's Monday all together. I can't wait.

I tried to find a picture of the frozen treat, but I searched the entire internet and couldn't track down any visual evidence that this thing even existed. So, I am going to attempt to photograph it this afternoon when I purchase my very own. Then, I can make you drool over the picture tomorrow.

In the meantime, I will provide you with some musical and visual entertainment.



And finally, let me leave you with a couple of interesting news stories:
1. Vatican adds 7 new deadly sins
2. Are there drugs in your drinking water?

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

See The Drool Running Down My Chin?

It's because I'm in total love with my laptop. The screen resolution and graphics are so much better than my desktop that I have become EVEN MORE addicted to the internet and my games. I promise this will wear off, it's just that it's so hard to tear myself away. Besides, it's a slow time of year. I probably wouldn't be posting much anyway. Right?

Cyanide and Happiness, a daily webcomic
Cyanide & Happiness @ Explosm.net

Saturday, February 23, 2008

Attention Slackers

All of you lazy bums out there who never remember to actually put a check in the mail, listen up. City Utilities is no longer allowing you to save yourself a stamp by paying the tech when he shows up to disconnect you. According to this article the technician who knocks on your door is no longer allowed to accept any cash or checks as payment from anyone. However, you do still have the option of immediately calling in and paying with a debit or credit card.

What surprises me the most about this article is the fact that you used to be able to pay the technician at the door. To me, that just doesn't seem wise. Especially if you pay with cash. What's to prevent him from just pocketing it and disconnecting you anyway after you've closed the door? Not that CU techs are shady, just that some people are shady. I guess with a check you wouldn't have too much to worry about, but still I would not have been comfortable with handing them payment. Of course, I can see how it would be convenient if your disconnect came as a complete surprise.

Either way, it doesn't matter any more. I'm just going to have to memorize my debit card # so I can call it in next time...wait, I mean you guys will have to memorize your card #'s...nevermind.

Thursday, February 21, 2008

It Has Arrived!

My new laptop is here. And it is even more awesome than I imagined it would be. This thing is HUGE! So, now I have no excuses for not updating this place. Let the posting begin.

Monday, February 18, 2008

Good Morning!

Hello everyone, and happy Monday morning to you. I just wanted to pop in here and say that more posts will be coming soon, but my laptop is going to be delayed a few weeks and I still can't use blogger at work - so my blog is still on temporary vacation.

I do however have some exciting news. Exciting for me, anyway. I got to switch to day shift at work starting today. I have to be there at 7:00 and I will get out of there at 3:30. So very exciting! That's gonna give me so much extra time in the evenings. I'm anxious to see how much more productive I will be around the house now.

Anyway, better eat my breakfast and hop in the car.

Monday, February 11, 2008

Sorry, We're Closed

That's basically what the internet told me the other day at work when I decided to update the blog. "Sorry, we're closed. You can knock but you can't come in." Okay, technically it said something along the lines of "This website has been blocked...." Yadda, yadda, yadda.

Yep. They finally blocked blogger. Just the latest in a long string of websites that I am no longer allowed to access at work. And for some reason, this one really irritated me the most. All blogger sites are blocked as "social networking" sites. I sorta understand preventing people from playing games at work (should be watching for dying patients) and streaming music at work (strains the network)and MySpace (cause it's stupid) - side note, here's my MySpace page - and YouTube (same as both games and streaming music).

But Blogger? Really? It's not like it's e-Harmony or anything. What's wrong with social networking. And besides all that, I work in the IT department! I'm not saying we should get special treatment, it's just that we should totally get special treatment. They pay me to sit at my computer and wait for the phone to ring. How am I supposed to entertain myself while I'm waiting?

So anyway, that's why the posting has lagged. And it will continue to lag for a few more days, because when I'm at home I don't spend much time blogging. But, I will be fully functional at work soon because I finally ordered a Dell laptop. And when it gets here I can carry it to work and do whatever the heck I want to on my own machine. So, then blogging will return to normal. And one of the posts will definitely be pictures of my new laptop - because it is the awesome! (yes, i said it that way on purpose).

Wednesday, February 06, 2008

Struggles

Well, I'm finding myself struggling with my attempt to lose weight and get healthy. It's so frustrating because I'm the one who's miserable and I'm the one who decided I desperately want to change, yet I'm the one who is too lazy to do any exercise and has started giving in to my food cravings again. I guess it's just not in me to change. I don't know.

Most people who have successfully lost a large amount of weight always talk about that "moment" that became their turning point. It's usually some sort of embarassing thing that happened, or something they realized they can no longer do because of their weight. But trust me, I've had hundreds of those moments. I'm embarassed daily. I constantly find stuff I'm afraid to do or places I'm afraid to go because of the fact that I'm morbidly obese. I've reached the turning point so many times. And then 2 weeks later I'm back to my old habits.

I'm 37 years old. It's ridiculous. I want to get married and have babies and I know I'm running out of time. But do I have the willpower to change my life? No! I see older women that are obese who are using canes and wheelchairs. I see others that can barely walk, can barely get out of their chairs or their cars. And I know that if I don't lose half my body weight, I will be just like that in no time. But here I am struggling. And not even struggling with a diet, because I purposely didn't start one. I can't even handle trying to keep myself from eating after 9:00 pm or make myself spend 10 frickin minutes a day actually moving.

You know what? Screw it. I've got nothing to lose and everything to gain. I'm just gonna spit it out there. I weigh 320 pounds. Please, somebody ridicule me enough to get me back on track.

Monday, February 04, 2008

Good News - Patriots Lose The Super Bowl

It was awesome. They were held to only 14 points.
Brady was sacked and knocked down 10 times more than Manning was.
No perfect season. I love it!

Friday, February 01, 2008

An 80's Kind Of Day

For some strange reason I've got 80's music running through my head. So, I decided to post a couple of vintage videos from back in the day.

First comes "Shout" by Tears For Fears, one of my favorite groups ever. These guys were awsome.



And just to give you a reason to laugh, "Hanging Tough" by New Kids On The Block (NKOTB)

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Hair Today, Gone Tomorrow

On March 25, 1958, Elvis Presley spent his first full day as a private in the US Army by receiving his official army haircut. It remains the "most photographed haircut in the world" and resulted in one of Elvis' most famous phrases - "Hair today, gone tomorrow".

That haircut took place at Fort Chaffee, AR in building 803. Luckily, for history's sake, that building was spared in the fire that raged through Fort Chaffee yesterday. Unfortunately, for history's sake, many buildings at the site were destroyed.

Fort Chaffee had a great history, even if you don't include Elvis' haircut. It was a key military training installation from the moment the first soldiers arrived the week of Dec. 7th, 1941 (sound familiar? this is the day Japan attacked Pearl Harbor) all the way through 1993. In the 70's, the fort became home to 50,000 Southeast Asian refugees and later 20,000 Caribbean refugees. Additionally, Biloxi Blues and A Soldier's Story were both filmed on location there.


I'm very sad to hear about the fire. They have not yet ruled out arson as the cause. I sure hope that's not the case.

Monday, January 28, 2008

SUPER BOWL

Honestly, even though I will watch the SUPER BOWL this year (to see all the commercials) it's not one that I'm super passionate about. Well, except for the fact that I hope the Patriots get totally pwned in the SUPER BOWL. But that's only because I strongly dislike Tom Brady and their (apparently) homeless coach Bill Imasloppychick. But, neither team means that much to me. Although, in case I haven't mentioned it, I hope the Patriots completely humiliate themselves by somehow scoring negative points in this years SUPER BOWL.

Okay, it's becoming obvious to me that perhaps I am a tiny bit passionate about this years SUPER BOWL. However, my dislike of the Patriots was not the original reason I started this post. Let's get back on topic. The SUPER BOWL. I'm not sure if you've noticed, but everytime I have used the word SUPER BOWL I have typed it in all caps. Feel free to take a minute and look over what you've read so far to see if you can spot them.

See? I started with the title and so far I have said SUPER BOWL 8 times now. Want to know why? Because if I can draw attention to my blog by pissing off the NFL, I might get more traffic. Confused? I was confused when I heard a dj on a local radio station advertising a "Super Vessel" party and then heard the explanation at the end of the ad that they are not allowed to use "that other super word". Seriously, the NFL has restricted the use of the word SUPER BOWL. I decided to be a rebel and test my luck. Read more about it here.

On a side note, you may have noticed that my 1, 2, 3 posts didn't last long. I just want to explain that I stopped posting them for 2 reasons:
1. they aren't interesting to anyone beside me...okay, not even me.
2. I am lazy.

There's no need to worry though, I'm still sticking with my gameplan and hanging in there just fine.

Thursday, January 24, 2008

Oh My!

It's probably not a good thing that I drive 85 miles an hour between Republic and Springfield to come to work every day...okay, I'm kidding. I usually don't go over 75.

Fugitive arrested after high-speed chase

A parole absconder who led sheriff’s deputies on a high-speed car chase this afternoon is now in custody, according to Chief Deputy Jim Arnott.

During the chase between Springfield and Republic, speeds reached up to 85 miles an hour and the suspect waved a handgun at law enforcement officers, Arnott said.

The chase ended in the 5500 block of Farm Road 148 in a grassy field after a spike ruptured the suspect’s vehicle tire. A short foot pursuit followed and the suspect was taken into custody, Arnott said.


And, while I'm here I'm gonna throw in my 1, 2, 3.
1. Today I drove the speed limit on the way to work.
2. I placed a current (and very rare) picture of me near my computer at work for motivation.
3. While I was at work I managed not to kill anyone.

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

1, 2, 3

Today's positive statements:

1. I woke up late and wanted to go in to work late, but I made myself get motivated and ended up at work 10 minutes earlier than usual.

2. I took the stairs every single time today, no elevator riding!

3. Even though I didn't like it at all, I tried to eat plain non-fat yogurt for breakfast this morning. Normally I wouldn't have even tried it but I gave it a shot because it's a recommended healthy food. Any suggestions on how I can make myself like it? I put frozen blueberries and splenda in it, but i couldn't eat more than 2 bites. It was nasty.

My First Ever Giveaway Contest

Over the weekend I finished reading "A Boy's Life" by Robert R. McCammon. I completely enjoyed it, even though I've never been a boy. It was a great combination of being a relaxing, "light" read while at the same time presenting you with a mystery that needed to be solved. Very entertaining, extremely well-written. A book that I was excited about reading every night. You guys should check out the Amazon page (click on the book title above) for a description and customer opinions. I am an avid lover of books, so I do not throw them away. What I'm going to do with this one is pass it along to one of you guys so that others may enjoy it as much as I do. Anyone who is interested just leave me a comment on this post and at the beginning of February I will draw out a name and mail you the book free of charge (it's a paperback). All I ask in return is that when you are finished reading it, you agree to pass it on to someone else.

Saturday, January 19, 2008

1, 2, 3

My 3 positive statements about myself today are:

1. I am proud of myself for going to the movies and not buying any popcorn or candy - no food at all.

2. I am very happy with my calorie intake for the day.

3. I had a great time going out with my friends and managed to stay relaxed and not worry about what they "might" be thinking about me. I had fun.

Friday, January 18, 2008

1, 2, 3

I am trying to start a habit of making 3 positive statements about myself each day.
This is the first installment and it was a difficult task.

1. I did a good job of drinking water today at work. I drank an entire 44 ounces and also had 20 ounces of diet pepsi.

2. I wore nice dress pants instead of my sloppy corduroy's to work, even though it was Friday.

3. I was helpful to someone I didn't really care to be helpful to.

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Phase 1

Some of you may recall reading my Happy New Year post from the beginning of the year where I talked about some of the changes I wanted to make in myself. I just wanted to let you know that I am actively working on accomplishing this goal. The biggest change I want to make is, of course, with my weight. However, there are so many factors surrounding the entire weight issue. There’s so much pressure, judgment and bad feelings involved it’s a hard subject to tackle. I don’t want to announce that I’m on a diet and then be spotted eating a cookie, because that’s going to give people a reason to judge me. If you see my fat ass with a cookie you are going to assume that I will never succeed at my diet, or that I have already fallen off the wagon. Even though I know I have eaten nothing but blueberries, cottage cheese and lean ham for the past 3 weeks you only know that people on diets don’t eat cookies. And that’s why diets fail.

Seriously, in this type of situation there are only 3 options:
1.) never eat a cookie again – YEAH RIGHT!
2.) sneak your food and hide while you eat the cookie (which leads to binging)
3.) don’t tell anyone you are on a diet – which means no one is encouraging you and supporting you – also means you have no accountability and can quit anytime you want.

I have done a lot of diets. Some of them have worked really well, but none of them have ever been permanent. Besides, the word “diet” actually makes me hungry. This is why I am not currently dieting and hope to never go on another diet again.

What I am doing sounds much more dramatic. I’m “changing my lifestyle”. Taking baby steps towards my goal of being a better me. It’s slow going, trust me. Since the beginning of the year I have only lost 5 pounds. Fairly small number for someone as big as me. Heck, about 3 years ago I was on a diet that resulted in me losing 11 pounds in my first week. But obviously, that didn’t stick so what’s the point.

Only 5 pounds in approx. 16 days isn’t a very big loss. But what is big is some of the changes I have made in my lifestyle. For example, I am no longer putting any food in my mouth after 9:00 pm. That may sound kinda late to most of you. The common rule is not to eat anything in the 2 hours before your bedtime. But since I stay up until an average time of 1:30 am – 2:00 am, not eating after 9:00 is meaningful. And difficult. I mean not even a bite of food goes in my mouth, whether it’s good healthy food or not. That one was especially rough on me last night cause I was feeling restless and there were a few squares of peanut butter fudge in the kitchen. It’s hard not to walk by and pop one in your mouth, but I did it.

Another change has been taking out smaller portions of food and drinking more liquids with my meals. Liquids is a tough one for me cause I’m very rarely thirsty. I seriously can go days with nothing more than 1 glass of tea or perhaps 1 can of diet coke. Nurses complain anytime I need blood drawn because my veins withered away and died of dehydration at about the age of 12. So, filling my stomach with liquids is going to actually do a lot of good. I’m not drinking as much as I should yet, but I’m working on it.

Something else completely new is that I am going to be adding a new daily feature to this blog called “1, 2, 3”. It will be a post that will be nothing more than 3 positive statements about myself that day. The reason behind this one is that I am my own worst enemy. Nobody hates me as much as I do and nobody talks as bad about me as I do. I call myself fat, dorky, stupid and gross countless times a day – whether I’m talking internally to myself or actually conversing with other people. Obviously that has to change. So I’m going to force myself to think of positive things and try to quit talking negatively about myself.

Those are the baby steps I have taken in Phase 1. As soon as I have these things under control and they become second nature, I will introduce Phase 2. No quitting this time!

Monday, January 14, 2008

Random Thoughts For The Day

Wow, Conan O'Brien is actually funnier without his writers.

Olive Garden's new Lasagna Rollatini with Chicken looks really good.

Have I ever eaten at Olive Garden before? Oh yeah, I went once in 1996. I should probably go back.

I hope it snows enough to be pretty tomorrow.

If only my treadmill were here already, I could be walking right now instead of doing all this silly thinking.

Well, this list is long enough. Time to play some Warcraft games.

Friday, January 11, 2008

Aw, How Cute!

A baby stop sign and his mommy!

Thursday, January 10, 2008

Blast From The Past

Inspired by the cold weather outside.

Wednesday, January 09, 2008

A Letter Of Apology...To My Roommate

Dear Roommate,
Thank you for allowing me to share your house with you. It's a beautiful house and is not even a year old yet. So fresh. So new looking. With white walls and cream carpet. Unscarred countertops, glistening appliances. I really appreciate how lucky I am to be living there. Everything is so shiny.

But, I'm afraid that will all soon change. I regret to inform you that I will no longer be doing the necessary housework that is required to keep a brand new house looking so...well...new. I realize I never have actually done as much housework as I should have, but I have managed to keep up the appearance of clean. Sadly, that is no longer going to be true.

I'm sorry, dear roommate but your house will no longer get the attention it needs from me. You have no one to blame but yourself - for it was you who introduced me to World of Warcraft. I will no longer be leaving my computer aside from bathroom breaks and occasionally going to work.

Monday, January 07, 2008

Where Have All The Pretty People Gone?

Back in the late 80's & early 90's I was a fan of a little show called American Gladiators. Maybe that makes me a nerd, maybe not. Either way, I even had a favorite gladiator - Zap! She rocked. I always rooted for the contestants until there was an event Zap was involved in, then I wanted her to smash everyone into the ground. She usually did. ESPN Classic has been showing reruns of this series for quite a while now, and watching it just isn't quite the same. You can tell they are old shows and they just don't hold my interest.

So, I was excited to hear that American Gladiators was making a return. And being hosted by the always popular Terry Bollea (Hulk Hogan) and the recently popular Laila Ali (gorgeous & charming daughter of Muhammad Ali) was an added bonus. But just a few minutes into the 2 hour premiere last night, I was already disappointed. These new gladiators...well, some of them are pretty weird. I just didn't care for most of them. The original gladiators looked pretty cheesy, but only because that's the way you were supposed to look in 1990. Let me show you what I mean:

Here's the original group:


Here's a new guy named Wolf - who howls like a wolf rather than speaking


This guys name is Toa - before his event he spouted off a few sentences in some sort of Egyptian sounding language:


Here's one of the girls, Stealth - didn't really do anything weird, she's just not attractive:


Finally, we meet Hellga - the picture speaks for itself:


Now for a group photo:


They aren't even wearing the red, white & blue uniforms that I got so used to seeing. I'm not saying I won't watch it - the competition is still goood. But, I am very disappointed.

Friday, January 04, 2008

Taking The Plunge

After many, many, many, many, many requests from my brother to check out World of Warcraft, I'm finally going to do it. Tonight. Right now. Taking the plunge. I've always been interested in checking the game out, but remained hesitant to actually create an account because, well, because I seem to have a short attention span. Not in an ADD type of way, it's just that I have always been a "jack of all trades, master of none". I always become extremely interested in a subject and will devote a week or two of complete focus on it and then one random day my mind will suddenly say "Hey, I love cross stitch" and BOOM - just like that my previous addiction will be gone and I will spend the next 2 weeks cross stitching my little heart out.
Sprinkle and repeat.

But I seem to be in between obsessions at the moment, and Scott provided me with a 14 day free trial of the game. So, since that should be just about the right length of time for me to completely obsess about it and then completely get over it, I decided I might as well just do it. Here goes nothing.

Thursday, January 03, 2008

Something Must Be Wrong With Me

Earlier today I was joking around with one of my friends that something must be wrong with me because while I was perusing the internet I stumbled across a page that had some crafty type stuff on it and I was immediately hit with the strong desire to buy a sewing machine and make myself some pillows. We laughed heartily for several minutes about that one, cause we both know I'm not a very girly girl. However, a few short hours later and I'm sitting here thinking about how I can rearrange the spare bedroom and setup a table where I can make notecards and paint things. HELP!

Wednesday, January 02, 2008

Happy New Year

Well, it's 2008. Another. Year. Wasted. Seriously need to step up my game and actually put this new year to good use. I've been nagging myself lately to stop being an asshole, maybe it's time to actually do it. Of course, I'm not an asshole in the common sense of the word, but I feel like I'm an asshole and my opinion of me should count for something.

Why do I feel this way about myself? Because I'm the one who hears all the grumbling behind the scenes. You know, like when I decide that I'm going to do something nice and then afterwards find myself grumbling internally about how much stupid work it was. Ri-dic-ulous! I decided to do it, if I hadn't done it no one would have ever even known. So, am I mad at myself? That's stupid.

Here's another example: I enjoy my job, I specifically chose to work where I do, I get paid really well and work for an extremely awesome boss - yet I find myself having conversations with my coworkers about how much this place sucks. Bullshit! This place is awesome. Do I have stressful days? Sure. Does the company make decisions that affect me without asking my opinion? Absolutely. Do I sometimes get off the phone and want to pull my hair out? Yes. Would I rather work somewhere, anywhere, else? HELL NO! Then there's no point in me complaining is there? Instead of falling in line with the negativity that surrounds me at work, I should start trying to infect them with a positive attitude. Then maybe we could all have fun at work like we used to.

Also, I suck! I'm so worried about everyone else that I ignore my wants and needs. And I'm completely indecisive as a result. Let's say I am shopping with a friend and it's time for lunch. "Where do you think we should eat?" she asks. Simple enough question, right? Wrong! Instead of saying "I would like to eat at ______" (depends on what I'm craving that day & how long it's been since I've gone out to eat), I say "I don't care, wherever you want to" and end up sucking down soggy shrimp at Captain D's. Keep in mind, this is just an example. Doesn't seem to be a very good one, either - but it's all I could come up with. My point is, I refuse to make a decision if I believe someone else may not care for it. Which forces that person to make the decision and a lot of times, I don't care for it. So, that has to stop. It's not like a hang out with complete buttheads (anymore). If I would be assertive and make a choice every once in a while, they would go along with it the same way I go along with their choices. And I'm not just talking about deciding where to eat lunch. I try to choose what I think other people want in everything I do. I worry if they like what my hair looks like. I worry if they like the kind of music that I'm listening to. I worry if they think I'm talking too much, or if they think I'm not talking enough. I worry that they won't like me once we're actually hanging out. Or I worry that friends I've had for years will suddenly realize they don't like me.

I'm paranoid. I'm fat and I'm paranoid because of it. One day, several years ago, I was walking alongside a path with a couple of friends when a car drove by and some young guy leaned out the window and hollered something. I was immediately humiliated because I clearly heard him say "it's not working, fatso". I was very upset and my friends could see something was wrong with me. Carol asked me what was the matter. "Didn't you just hear that guy who drove by?", I asked her. "Yeah," she said, "that was one of my son's friends who hollered at me to get back to work. He drives by here every day on his way home." I'm still convinced he was making fun of me. That's what I expect from people. Even while pumping gas I wonder how many people are driving by and laughing at my fat ass. The worst thing by far is buying food, ordering food, eating food. Anything to do with food. I can just imagine all the people walking by saying "look at that fat ass with all that food." In reality, I know that I'm not important enough for everyone to spend their time thinking about me. I'm certainly not the center of attention for anyone, much less everyone. But my mind sure does trick itself into thinking everyone is grossed out by me. Trust me when I say that's not a fun way to go through life. Makes me feel like an asshole that I'm torturing myself this way.

I never expect people to like me. Which means I rarely give them a chance to get to know me. Why waste their time and mine? As a result, I don't really meet many people. Hmm...weird how that works, isn't it? It doesn't normally bother me too bad because I spend a lot of time with my siblings and cousins and we truly enjoy each other and have a total blast. But I'm starting to get old and I obviously can't fall in love, get married and have babies if I spend every weekend playing Trivial Pursuit at grandma's house. So, I've got to get out there and meet people. Somehow. If only I could figure out how to like myself long enough to let someone else like me too. That would be quite a trick, wouldn't it? Man, I'm such an asshole.

You may wonder why I'm bringing all of this up. I'm not exactly sure. I just know I want to make myself a better person and I'm kind of hoping that publicly admitting some of my faults will embarass me into changing them. I started the day determined that I was going to make a post which actually stated my weight, because I am now working on fixing that issue also. But, I just can't bring myself to post that yet. I want to so that it's out there in black & white, staring me in the face, making me accountable. But, I'm just too embarassed about the number. It sucks, because if I don't post it and then tell you in 2 weeks that I've lost 10 pounds, it won't have as big an impact as it would if you knew my starting weight. Any advice?