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in the hoosegow

Monday, February 28, 2005

my saturday exortation

Apparently everyone has already heard this story...but I'm writing it here for posterity and those who may be outside of the H-town library gossip circuit. Saturday I went to see Andre Williams play and the good ex told me I should try to make out with him. This was, of course, before I'd heard about this story. When we got there the El Orbits were just setting up and Mr. Williams was resting his tootsies near us. My friend got up to use the bathroom and on her way back past, Andre slapped her on the butt. Now, said friend is very beautiful and appears to be universally attractive to those in the music world, so I figured I had no chance with Andre myself. After the El Orbits played and Waxploitation happened (sorry--don't know if that's the name of the spinning event or the dj), Andre got up on stage with the El Orbits dudes. He had changed from his off-white summer suit to a bright red suit with a white button down shirt and a red t-shirt underneath, perhaps signifying that he was HOT. During the set he stopped twice to pick out girls to kiss, both dark-haired (like my friend), so I was more and more sure that I, somehow, was not his type. My friends (and ride) wanted to cut out early, so I had one last chance. Between sets Andre went backstage to change (into a gi of all things) and I caught him on his way back to the front. I complimented his show, explained I had to leave, and put my hand out for him to shake. He took the bait. I went home with my kiss and I didn't have to do it in front of a bunch of people.

What did I do this weekend? Nothing much, just kissed the black godfather.

first in a series

...of post-birthday reports.

I played one of those driving video games, where you choose the setting, car and an "upgrade". The first time I chose China Town, the orange car and accidentally selected decals as my upgrade. I ask you, what kind of upgrade is that?

Anyway, the reason I love those games is because you can drive over, into or under anything and keep going. I spent half the time on the sidewalk, smashing into lightposts, trees, other cars and anything else that happened into my way. I was laughing so hard that I was shout-laughing and pretty much rolled out of the seat when it was over.

Friday, February 25, 2005


Where I come from, little white kids generally have birthdays, while little black kids (and poor little white kids) have berfdays. However you want to pronounce it, mine's coming up shortly. We're celebrating with a group game of mini-golf, which I am hoping will be as fun as I remember. I actually started celebrating yesterday, in part because I finally got a big check I'd been waiting for. The good ex and I took ourselves out to my favorite Thai/sushi place and then watched The Passion of the Jew and Jesus' Son. The latter is not exactly religious--it's about a junkie and his adventures--but it was funny that we ended up with those two things. I'm also hoping to get in some good drinking and carousing between now and said birthday, rounding out the weekend with a viewing of Animal Lover. This is a film, a documentary I believe, about people who, ahem, really love their pets.

I can't wait.

So if you see a short feisty redhead wearing a crown this weekend, it'll probably be me. Don't forget to buy me a drink.

Thursday, February 24, 2005

small town boy makes it big

Project Runway aired its finale last night, two hours of Wendy, Kara Saun and Jay spatting, stressing and showing off their homes to Tim Gunn and the world. During the entire show, my two friends and I were proudly displaying our "I Hate Wendy Pepper" badges (which unexpectedly served as shirt protectors since we were eating messy Indian food), hooting and hollering every time she said something annoying or made that face. One friend refers to it as the turtle face, while I call it the platypus face.

Of course, as soon as we saw Wendy's line, we knew she didn't have a chance in hell, so we settled down to figuring out whether Kara Saun's or Jay's lines would have more of an impact on the runway. I was rooting for Jay since day one--he reminds me of a lot of people I grew up with--so I was hoping he'd shine. The shoe issue was a nice twist, especially since the shoe/dress combination on Kara Saun's lead model caused "the dress to fail" and it led to a great hissy fight between KS and WP and even provoked Jay to wish KS got comeuppance for trying to get away with something.

Part of the way through the episode, when Wendy and her daughter, inexplicably named Finley, were cavorting in the Pepper basement, I realized that Finley was Stuart from MadTV. If you're familiar with that character and his unnatural relationship with his mother, you'll understand why I immediately got a major case of the heebyjeebies.

Anyway, of course it came down to KS and Jay at the end of the show. Both were praised and told how well they did, but Jay just had the best collection, the most creative vision, and the best damn skirts I've seen in a while.

Wednesday, February 23, 2005

tv blather

Last week I reported on the "musical" episode of 7th Heaven. Then yesterday I read the recap of it on televisionwithoutpity. It was even funnier than I remembered--especially the part where they describe Ruthie's singing as not unlike that of a french cabaret singer. So true, so sadly true.

I worked late last night and got home in time to watch taped Gilmore Girls before heading off to sleepy land. Nothing to report from it other than the return of Marty (i.e. the man whom Rory is supposed to be dating) and Kirk doing a great job in the elementary school production of Fiddler.

Tonight is, of course, the final episode of Project Runway. My friend leaked some good pics of Austin Scarlett. I advise you to follow the link immediately. Since I'm planning to start my birthday weekend celebrations tomorrow if possible, probably not a lot more tv blather this week, unless of course I decide to make up a drinking game for CSI. Hmmmm.

Tuesday, February 22, 2005

just turn the key, little missy

So this morning I went for a run at my favorite park closest to me. When I got in the car and tried to start it, I couldn't. I mean the key wouldn't turn in the ignition. That happens to me frequently so I commenced jiggling it, then trying to turn the wheel really hard in case it was locked but all produced no results, other than very sore fingers. After at least 20 minutes of this I gave in and called my friend N. She came over with a can of WD40 and I sprayed the heck out of the lock. Still no luck. We went back to my house to get my extra key. Still no luck. A fellow parked next to us asked if I'd tried X, Y and Z. Of course I had. Still, he had to give it a shot (now, this is exactly how I act in these situations so I couldn't really fault him for having to try it himself). Low and behold, he was able to get it started. Then of course I felt pretty stupid, but I think it was either the WD40 having a chance to work or the fact that the dude was way stronger than me or both. Anyway, I have been able to start it myself twice since then but I'll be living in fear until I can get it fixed.

Monday, February 21, 2005

orgy at my house

From my horrorscope:

You're going to have plenty of energy tonight, and it's apt to bring you a lot of pleasure. It's a good night for socializing or dating, or doing something physical or sensual. This could be dancing or cooking a wonderful meal. Take it for what it is worth - remember that the sensual is a world unto itself, and doesn't necessarily need to have romantic connotations. Use this energy to show your love directly and simply to those you care for. Give and receive physical contact in a healthy, simple way.

In (un)related news, Hunter S. Thompson killed himself. I think you all know how he'd like to be remembered and his life commemorated. Please get to it as soon as possible.

gutter snipe

My one goal for the weekend was to get my gutters cleaned out. Those of you who've done this job before know how dirty and gross it is, but at the same time it's very satisfying. You get up on your ladder, survey the clogged gutters and dig in. If you have a small house like me, you're all done in less than two hours, even figuring in taking a few minutes off during downpours and dragging heavy bags of gutter goo to the curb.

After that I pretty much spent the rest of the day goofing off. In the evening, we rented WattStax, the film made of the event to commemorate the Watts Riots in 1964. The music was great, the interviews sometimes comical, sometimes poignant, but the fashion was really what got my attention. I've never seen so many gigantic fros and short short hotpants in my life, and I lived through the 70s.

Friday, February 18, 2005

where am i going with this?

In the past months, several of my close friends have declared a willingness and interest in going back to school. Perhaps it's part of our profession. We are information-oriented and therefore "lifelong learners" of the worst kind. Perhaps this desire reflects a dissatisfaction with our jobs, the organization we work for, ourselves, our status or our paychecks. I've felt the same draw to the academy myself but have resisted, in part because I am not yet willing to add to my large student loan debt, in part because I do like my job and exhausting myself working 40 hours a week and going to school at the same time doesn't appeal to me.

I also made a promise to myself when I dropped out of my first phd program that I would never go back without a project firmly in mind. For much of grad school I wandered around, bumping into good ideas and good people almost by accident, completing my first degree and the first year of my attempted second degree in a mist created by my lack of understanding of How Academia Really Works. By the end of that first year I had watched my advisor killing himself working toward tenure and a few of my classmates drop out, kill themselves (literally, this time), get divorced and generally become miserable.

You can see why I might hesitate to start that all over again. And yet, I've always wanted to have a plethora of degrees, especially the one that would allow me to call myself "dr. so and so" without having to stick people with needles or cut them up. So, I'm thinking about it, just like all of my friends.

Thursday, February 17, 2005

pug update

I ran into my pug-saving colleague during a fire drill today and she told me that someone else has adopted them. I'm a little relieved but also kinda sad. They were awfully cute...

So my house is fated to remain petless for a bit longer.


No, not WWF, Project Runway! Last night was the clips show, where they brought back all of the contestants, including the one who confessed "I don't want to be here!" before walking offstage. Yes, that was Houston's own Vanessa. Vanessa, dear, if you're reading this, I'd still have a beer with you and wouldn't send you a f**ing sewing kit in the mail.

They should've billed the show as Wendy Gets Yelled At, although there were fun other parts like Tim's reading of a letter from Morgan stating that she wouldn't be on the show unless they promised not to portray her in a negative way. There was also a great montage of Tim himself, "Carry on!" and also of the mass drinking that went on whenever a challenge ended. Heidi called the show "Project Drunkway". Robert also revealed himself to be a relative of George W. Bush. He kept trying to say "masochism and sadism" but it kept coming out something like "masachasism and sadisism". Oh dear.

Can't wait for the finale!

Wednesday, February 16, 2005


I mean, pubs, I mean PUGS!

One of my colleagues has two oldster pugs at her house. Some callous neighbors dropped them off to wander the streets alone but my colleague took them into her house. She already has two dogs, though, so she's looking for a good home for 'em.

Now, I love pugs. I like their squished noses and humpy little bodies, although I would never be cruel enough to breed a dog prone to skin and sinus problems. I'm thinking about taking these two in, but there's something holding me back from shouting, "Yes, yes! I must have geriatric pug friends! In my house! Immediately!"

So I'm not sure...

Tuesday, February 15, 2005


So I taped last night's 7th Heaven because I am addicted to that show, no matter how bad it gets. For some reason Brenda decided it was a good idea to make a musical Valentines Day episode and to let the actors sing themselves. Thank god I taped it--that allowed me to fast forward through Kevin's ear rending song, all of the cutesie dance numbers, and all of the scenes of Simon kissing his 1 day girlfriend.

There was one good part--where Kevin, after trying in vain to order roses from every florist in town, comes home to find Ruthie with the flowers her beau had just given her. He hands her a $100 dollar bill to give up the floral goods and the last shot is of her holding the money up to the light and kissing it. I could almost hear the Bank of Simon intoning, "yes my child, I have taught you well."

Note to any sitcom producers out there: the musical has tried and very seldom succeeded. Please, please, if you're going to attempt it on your show, hire some ringer singers!

that momentary feeling of contentment

Because I had a busy weekend schedule that involved being at work on both Saturday and Sunday, I was super lucky and got to take yesterday off. It was the first day in a while that it was both sunny and warm and I took advantage of that fact by working out in my yard, doing laundry, and spending the afternoon paling around with one of my best friends. We ate lunch outside, walked over to the coffee shop and drank and read outside, then I went home and read some more outside. When I got to my friend's yesterday evening and realized that it was going to be a little while before she got home, I spent a few more minutes just staring up at the stars and trees, enjoying the last few minutes of warm air on a February evening. Happy Valentines Day indeed.

Friday, February 11, 2005

sea lion woman

When I was a kid, I found an album of Odetta's in my sister's vinyl collection. I was making a mixed tape of some sort (yup, it was the 80s) and picked Sea Lion Woman as one of the selections. That's the first time I remember hearing Odetta's amazing deep and versatile voice. Here it is, twenty years later, and Odetta comes to Houston to give a show during Black History Month.

Well, my friends, that show was last night and far too many of you missed it. She was on stage with a piano player (the music director from Hairspray I think the announcer dude said) who could jazz up twinkle twinkle if you'd let him. Odetta made little announcements before many of the songs, explaining some of the lines, telling us who wrote the song, making sure we knew the chorus when she wanted us to sing with her.

Every single song was a blessing, an event, and I tried to physically breathe in her presence. I kept tearing up and smiling and laughing and clapping and whoo-hooing for the entire hour and a half. At the end, after we cheered her back onstage, she sang a few more songs and then began the song we'd started with, audience singing the chorus. After a few verses, she stood up and let us sing her offstage. I did my best, through my tears, to do her justice.

Big midnight special shine your light on me.
Big midnight special shine your ever loving light on me.
(repeat until Odetta leaves)

Thursday, February 10, 2005

no rory, no!

Gilmore Girls was excellent this week. Everyone was in character and they are all quirky characters. Lorelai was speed talking, she and Rory were eating junk food for dinner, Luke was running around fixing things and being picked on by Emily, Emily was conniving, Babette was inappropriate and drunk (what happened to Babette's husband, btw? I used to love that guy, Jerry?). I could go on...but I won't.

The thing I want to comment on, though, was the part where Rory is talking to Logan. At first it's cute and sweet, with her purposefully following her mother's example, going for what she wants and kissing Logan "just to see how it feels". Their discussion, though, gave me the heebie jeebies. It reminded me of too many other conversations where women try to convince men they can fool around without it turning into a relationship. The guy, meanwhile, saying he doesn't want a relationship and he knows that's what the woman wants, deserves, etc. etc. "You're special, Rory," proclaims Logan, yet he's unable or unwilling to treat her right.

I think the writers of that show are at least occasionally brilliant. Even though the characters aren't necessarily realistic, they are real. That's why I'm still devoted.

Wednesday, February 09, 2005

cow crap

So the second season of Penn & Teller's Bullshit is out on dvd now. We watched the first four episodes last night. The first one is about PETA and is really disturbing and good. One of the things they dug up using their old tax returns is that PETA "saved" about 2000 animals one year but euthanized over 1000 of them and then stowed them in their gigantic $9000 walk in freezer. Personally I'd be happy to see a reality show with PETA supporters on an island with a bunch of liberated animals and not much to eat. Who do you think would survive?

Tuesday, February 08, 2005


Those of you who are long suffering readers of this blog may remember that when I started I was reading The Count of Monte Cristo. It was soooo good that I am now on my 3rd book by Dumas (the father), The Man in the Iron Mask. I've only just begun but already I'm sucked in by the complex intrigue. The main character appears to be the unknown twin brother of the king, kept hidden from all in a remote country house and now imprisoned in the Bastille. Aramis, of Three Musketeers fame, has just revealed to him his true identity and of course they are about to hatch a plot. Watch this space for further updates.

Friday, February 04, 2005

happy days

The Happy Days 30th anniversary show was on last night. I saw bits and pieces of it around CSI. It's weird to see how people age and how their real personalities differ from the characters they played. Henry Winkler (the Fonz, aka Arthur Fonzerelli) is a complete dork but he played a guy who was so cool and got any woman he wanted just by snapping his fingers. Marian Ross (Mrs. Cunningham, aka Mrs. C) played the quintessential housewife but in reality she was divorced and raising a child on her own while working full time.

I don't really have a point here, but it's interesting to reflect on how television shows like Happy Days can be comforting for some people and threatening to others, even though the show itself doesn't reflect any kind of reality. Still, I prefer it to many "reality" shows like the Swan, the Bachelor(ette), Who Wants to Marry a Millionaire, etc. because it tried to portray the good in people, not the selfish, greedy or needy.

Thursday, February 03, 2005

coming out of the burrow

Conversation last night while watching the state of the union wrap-up.
Me: Do you think it's a coincidence that the state of the union was given on Ground Hog's day?
S: How many beers have you had?
Me: I mean, it's all projection, but you don't know until later if it's going to come true. Of course, Puxatawney Phil's been right 20 of the last 26 years...

Wednesday, February 02, 2005

home improvement

My friend and I were discussing possible shenanigans for Friday. She said, "we could go buy a ladder" to which I replied "and then take it home, get drunk and climb up on the roof."


not a sleep eater but a sleep shopper

I've been broke and have gone from "out of food" to "really out of food" in the past few days. We just got paid but since I've been working late and am infamously lazy I haven't yet gone to the store. Last night I dreamed that I was in a hurry to get somewhere but I had to walk through a gigantic grocery to meet someone. I kept stopping to pick up fruits and vegetables on my way out, even pausing to scan the banana selection. Apparently my stomach now has a direct line to my subconscious through my dreams.

Tuesday, February 01, 2005

sweat swiffer

Anyone who's a fan of cleaning products will know that swiffer comes in wet and dry versions. You buy the stick and then a package of whatever type of "cloth" you need and away you go! It works really well on that fine particulate matter (dust) and on cobwebs. Anything that's very large, though, is better swept or vacuumed up. Sometimes I push that stuff around with the swiffer and then sweep it all up at the end.

That's the dry swiffer. The wet swiffer is different. The wet swiffer is, well, wet. It's not just moist, it's dripping. It also smells. It's a smell I don't really like and there it is, dripping all over my floor. I've tried it twice now, once in the bathroom and once in the kitchen. Both of those floors are tiled and the wet swiffer doesn't get into the cracks at all, despite being significantly thicker than the dry swiffer. So now I've got a kitchen floor that semi-clean but I can still see food spills and other grunge in between each tile. Guess who's mopping tonight?