Saturday, February 26

Isn't it Ironic

That the Blogger spell checker doesn't recognize the following words:
  • blog
  • blogger
  • webpage
  • commenters
I'm just saying ...

Red Tape

Last Saturday I filed my taxes. Not because I am an excellent citizen (although I am) or because I am particularly enthusiastic about taxes (because I'm not) - but simply because I'M GETTING CASH! And I want it now.

This morning I went online to check the status of my return. When do I get the CASH? This year, instead of simply answering 3 questions to get access to the info, I had to apply for an "epass account", which offers "Instant access to your personal income tax and benefit account information."

So far it has taken me longer to apply for this account than it took for me to file my taxes. I'm still not in, as apparently after providing them with every bit of personal info I can muster, I still need an activation code that should have arrived by mail - but in my case, didn't. Perhaps, to be helpful, they'll send this useful code that enables me to check on the status of my refund, with my refund. It seems exactly like something the government would do.

BREAKING NEWS: I just found the following statement ...

"you can check your refund status on My Account beginning in mid-March."

I guess their fancy new system wasn't quite ready for keeners like me - who just want their CASH. Good news is, it says it should only take 2 weeks. Who needs a stupid activation code? By mid-March - I'll be too busy shopping to have time to log onto my special "epass".

Thursday, February 24

The World of Over Achievers

This morning I got up promptly at 7AM - which if you knew me, you would know never happens voluntarily. But I was awake and I've been trying new things of late so up I got. By the time I left for work, I had worked out, walked the dog, cleaned the kitchen & bathroom, ran the dishwasher and folded and put away all of the laundry.

On the way to work I was frustrated with myself because I hadn't had time to vacuum.

What? Normally all I do before I leave for work is get up, stumble to the shower, get dressed, grab my stuff and hope I remembered to comb my hair. There is never any exercise or cleaning and the dog has to wait to 'do her business' till she hits the yard at work.

I must say it gets quite frustrating to never be satisfied with what you've accomplished. It generally means you get a lot done, but the thrill of accomplishment only lasts momentarily while you immediately set out on the next task. I've really got to learn to ease up on myself.

And tomorrow I won't be getting up early!

Wednesday, February 23

NailGate 2005 Revisited

Last night, once again, that chubby mutt came in from playing in the yard with a broken nail. What exactly is she doing back there when I think she is just playing fetch with one of the kids from work? We've gone almost 6 years with no nail problems, and now this was the 2nd broken nail in as many months.

This one looked like a different kind of trauma (imagine (at your own risk) pulled back from the nail bed, instead of split down the middle). I immediately decided I wouldn't waste time worrying about what to do, but that I would learn from the last incident, and take her straight to the vet.

Apparently, this time I over-reacted. It seems that pulled back nails can be more or less of a concern than split nails. More of a concern if it is pulled too far back, as the dog must be sedated and the nail fully removed - not just trimmed back. Less of a concern if it isn't too far back, as it will heal itself. (More pretty mental images for you all!)

The good news is, this time it fell into the less of a concern category - it isn't pulled back far enough to warrant it being removed and the vet is quite certain it will heal on it's own if she rests for a couple of days and doesn't participate in "aggressive running" which might re-injure it. (I told Jasper this included "aggressive fence climbing and escaping" - hopefully she'll fall for it!) The vet is also certain that there isn't an underlying problem with her nails - that it is just a coincidence that she had 2 nail 'traumas' so close together.

Also good news - the vet charged me exactly $0 for over-reacting and taking up her valuable time. I told you she was a good one.

Even more good news - the chubby mutt lost .5 pounds. I'm not yet sure if the same can be said for the chubby owner, as she is avoiding the scale until the end of the month so as to not be discouraged again.

Sunday, February 20

Would You Like Cheese With That?

On my way to the grocery store, I followed a car that had a bumper sticker that read

"Don't Whine, Organize."

I thought, hey - that's good. I LOVE to organize. I can imagine proudly displaying such a bumper sticker about my desk at work. Then when I'm interrupted, I could just point at the sticker. Can't remember when the meeting is - don't whine, organize. Can't find receipts for your expense report - don't whine, organize. Forgot to turn in project info on time - don't whine, organize.

And then I noticed the car's other bumper stickers:

"Just Say Yes to Unions"
"Don't Settle. Fight For YOUR Rights."
"Unions - YES. Free Labour - NO."

Oh - that organize. Hmm, maybe I won't put it above my desk after all. I think non-profits probably frown on organized unions. Especially at the managerial level.

Besides - it seems like around here - it should more accurately read "Organize Your Right To Whine." Case in point - those damn hockey players.

Saturday, February 19

My Own 12 Step Program

Step 1 - Admit that you have a problem.
Step 2 - Start your own blog.
Step 3 - Actually write in your blog more than once.
Step 4 - Write an honest & personal post, rather than just silly ones.
Step 5 - Respond to comments left on your own blog.
Step 6 - Focus lurking energy on other tasks.
Step 7 - Visit webpages of commenters and leave them comments. Spread the love.
Step 8 - Write at least one comment on all the blogs you link to.

I'm off to tackle Step 8. Since I'm making this up as I go along, I'm not certain where steps 9-12 will lead.

I am certain that my next 12 step program will need to focus on my compulsion to make lists and the fact that I actually took the time to write this particular post. And that I won't be satisfied until I have 4 more steps.

Perhaps I need a therapist more than I need a blog. Especially considering I just took a break from writing this post to make sure I had fully completed Steps 6 & 7 before heading off to tackle Step 8. I soooo wish I was kidding.

*Please note - this post is not meant to mock or in anyway diminish the value of actual 12 step programs. It is meant only to mock me.

Thursday, February 17

When Will I Learn

Seriously dumbass - if you don't want to have to get off the couch


No matter how funny it is to try and watch her get them.

How to Exercise Your Dog

  • Wake up lazy dog
  • Gain dog's attention and interest by tossing a couple of Corn Pops in her general vacinity
  • Continue to throw Corn Pops around the room, one at a time, in different directions
  • Take it easy while dog races about the room hunting down the delicious treats
How to Exercise the Corn Pop Throwing Couch Potato

  • Throw Corn Pops underneath furniture where dog cannot reach them
  • Get off couch and lift various pieces furniture so dog can reach Corn Pops and will stop her incessant barking and whining
How to Avoid Straining Yourself During Exercise

  • Keep the Corn Pops to yourself
PS - You know it's time to tackle the heavy dusting after you find the dog's nose covered in spider webs after Corn Pops chasing spree.

The End of an Era

After 2 weeks of no fast food, I stopped at a McDonald's tonight after work on my way to a meeting, as there had been no time to head home inbetween to grab dinner. I ordered my old nemisis, the chicken strips, and prepared to enjoy a favorite treat.

Or, should I say, a formerly favorite treat. I was unable to finish it, as part way through I was already feeling quite vile. I ditched the rest and, thanks to unexpectedly light traffic, had time to fit in some exercise to walk at least some of it off.

So yay - I think I've kicked a nasty unhealthy habit and replaced it with a healthy one.

I think I'll rent Super Size Me this weekend so I'm not tempted back to the dark side.

Trading Addictions

I knew curing my lurkaholic addiction would be a multi-step process.

I just never imagined that one of those steps would be to replace the lurking addiction with a new "blog design tweaking" addiction.

I must be stopped. I must also sleep. Now.

But isn't it pretty???

Monday, February 14

Why I don't hate Valentine's Day

Most single people I know, and some of the not so single ones, hate Valentine's Day. Over the years I've been invited to many an anti-lovers event in the middle of February, and I have never quite understood why everyone gets so upset over it.

Perhaps I'm just fortunate, because I've never felt neglected or overlooked on this day, simply because I'm a February baby and when your birthday hits within 2 days of Valentine's day, almost everything you get is red, pink and heartshaped.

Growing up, we had Valentine's Day parties each year which teachers and fellow students were always happy to make a little bit more about me than they needed to be. I never lacked for dance partners, because everyone paid extra attention to the (almost) birthday girl. No one overlooked me when they handed out valentine card's because it saved them time having to buy a separate birthday card. And as for the gift and treats - you name it, I received it.

This year has been no exception. Red & white stuffed dog - check. Black & red stuffed bear - check. Plenty of valentine's cards - check. A heart shaped box of chocolates - check. Heart shaped and/or red & pink cakes/cupcakes - check, check and check. Helium balloons - check. Flowers - nope - but that's a sign of love too since I'm horribly allergic to them. Unending sappy e-cards - check. I feel loved!

I would most likely feel differently about this day if my birthday fell in July - which makes me realize that perhaps all people are looking for today is a bit of attention and for someone, anyone to remind them that they are loved. Which means I'm off to send some sappy e-cards of my own.

But I'm keeping the chocolates.


I have been having posting trouble for a couple of days. This is just a test. Had this been an actual post, I would have spell checked it.

Sunday, February 13

Celebrity Poker

Why do I love thee?

I really don't understand why I am so fascinated with this show (in re-runs). I know nothing about poker. I care nothing about poker. I don't even care about the celebrities that are playing. But I can't stop watching.

I might need an intervention. Or an invitation to your next Texas Holdem Poker Night.

PS. Who the heck is David Cross? Am I the only one who doesn't know? Isn't it a bit embarrassing to be on a “Celebrity” show, and not have people know who you are? Or is it me that needs to be embarrassed for not knowing who he is?

Thursday, February 10

The Ball Park of Reality

The other day in the office the conversation turned to the one topic guaranteed to make me run for cover – weight – specifically how much people weigh. Thankfully I was in an adjoining room and was therefore spared from pretending I wasn’t paying attention and freely able to eavesdrop.

One of my co-workers referred to someone who was tall for her age and said she weighed about ‘180’. Another co-worker quickly replied with “Hey, that’s my size.”

I was struck by these statements because neither of these people is fat - yet our culture tells us that if you are a woman and weigh 180 lbs, you must be fat. And I’m ashamed to that in that moment I realized that I kind of believe it too. I pretend I don’t. I pretend that most people that discuss weight are clueless. I scoff at those men who think that the majority of women weigh less than 120lbs. I tell myself it is all media hype and that we fall for it because the only women who will reveal their weight are usually underweight. Or lying.

But I must believe it because I was shocked to hear that these two people actually weigh 180lbs. I mean, if they weigh 180 and are not obese, that means that other non-obese women must also weigh 180lbs. Where are they? Why are they not shouting from the rooftops that they are average size, and therefore average weight AND they are not 110lbs? Why didn’t anyone tell me, when I weighed 180lbs, that I wasn’t abnormal?

I believe that most women weigh more than they would admit to. I completely understand. My weight on my driver’s license isn’t really in the ball park of reality. I wonder if the reason no one will be honest about it, is because no one else is. Do all women secretly think that there is no way they look like they weigh what the scale says? Do we all feel that those around them would be shocked, if not repulsed, to know our true weight? I look around at those who seem to be a similar size, look at them and think – there is no way they weigh as much as me. Instead I seem to believe that I have a freakishly dense body composition and no one must ever know.

Imagine if everyone told the truth. Imagine how freeing and empowering it could be.

I’m just not going first.

Tuesday, February 8

You are SOOOO jealous!

You are jealous of me because:
  • I have exercised 3 days in a row and 6 of the last 9 days.
  • I have stopped drinking the evil but oh-so-delicious coca-cola.
  • I've been eating so much salad the dog doesn't even bother to beg at dinner time anymore.
  • I have gained 1lb.
Try not to hate me too much.

(So goes week 1 of Dr. Jax's Weight Loss Challenge. I think I should write a book. )

Monday, February 7

Just another lazy Monday

My new super-efficient-spectacular work organizational plan has now been in effect for 2 weeks. I have not only had the fun of colour-coding, sorting and crossing things off - but I'm actually doing super, spectacularly efficient work. So much so that by 1:20PM I had finished not only everything on today's list - but tomorrow's too. That left me with so many possibilities - getting a head start on other rapidly approaching projects, tackling those "if hell ever freezes over and time allows" projects or even going into 'observation' mode (read playing silly games with kids while pretending to evaluate team members.)

However, I think I made much better choices with my time. This afternoon I did the following:
  • Spent 45 minutes at picking out those perfect cards for those special someones. (Sorry they were late guys - that's what you get for all three of you having a birthday on the same day - hope you like the annoying birthday song. It's only 'cause I love you.)
  • Sat on the couch and visited with a former co-worker and his too adorable daughter. Ensured said daughter received appropriate amount of encouragement to continue to call the dog "Mama", eat raisins by smushing handfuls into her face and dance on the table. I wonder why they never let me babysit?
  • Forwarded my favorite Bush joke* to everyone I thought would find it funny. I sent it to everyone else twice.
  • Did more "google stalking" under the guise of looking up old co-workers for an upcoming reunion. Oh the stories I'll be able to tell.
  • Left at 5:00PM for an important business dinner with a very valuable client. (Don't tell anyone she's only 12 - we had important things to discuss - such as a certain boy named A.J., Good Charlotte, the upcoming Survivor and why she feels compelled to eat sour cream, even though she doesn't like it.)
Good thing I'm salaried and have many 12 hour days to look forward to or I might feel a bit guilty. Besides, almost everything was work "related". I even sent the Bush joke to my boss.

*Q: How many Bush Administration officials does it take to change a light bulb?

A: None. There is nothing wrong with the light bulb; its conditions are improving every day. Any reports of its lack of incandescence are a delusional spin from the liberal media. That light bulb has served honorably, and anything you say undermines the lighting effect. Why do you hate freedom?

Saturday, February 5

To my fellow morning shoppers

  • I like to laugh at you when you circle the parking lot ad nauseam looking for the perfect parking spot. I usually laugh because I know that by going straight to a parking spot a few rows over, I will not only beat you into the store, but I get lots of extra exercise. This morning I laughed because as I was driving to those further rows, the closest non-handicap parking spot opened up and I TOOK IT! Was that you still waiting for my spot as I backed out 20 minutes later???
  • When I am standing in an aisle and I step back to let you pass by, please understand that I am standing there because I am actually perusing the items on the nearest shelves. It is not so helpful for you to stop, with your cart, directly in front of me and take your time looking at those same items. You’re blocking my view and I was here first. That popcorn is mine – all mine.
  • When you are shopping with your family, which includes an overflowing grocery cart, a mucky toddler in a stroller and pre-schooler enamored with samples, please try to avoid walking side by side by side and taking up the entire aisle. If you can think of no alternatives to the side by side by side walking, perhaps you could at least make room for someone else to pass – at least once the say excuse me – at least before they have to say it a fourth time.
  • If you drive in such a way that you block an entire intersection while you are turning, feel free to keep going, even if you think I have the right away when I don't. It's not that I'm trying to be rude and difficult, it just that it's hard for me to actually go, since, you know, you are BLOCKING the intersection and all.
  • Thank you to the one shopper who said “excuse me” to me, instead of just pushing past me. Thank you for making the ratio of “excuse me”s said to “excuse me”s received 34523:1.

Friday, February 4

Can I Have Farts With That?

Last week I took the 9 year old son of a friend for a couple of hours to give her bit of a break (he is, shall we say, precocious). I had planned a fun filled couple of hours complete with all of his favorite activities – cleaning the back yard (poop patrol), washing the dog and vacuuming the car. (Seriously – those are his favorite activities – his mother has been known to use ‘not being allowed to wash Jax’s car’ as a disciplinary measure.)

After our chores fun filled activities were complete, I asked him where he would like to go for dinner. He immediately chose Wendy’s and I foolishly assumed it was because, with it being in a bit of a drive away, he didn’t get to go very often.

As we stood in line waiting to order, I listed all of the choices – burgers, fries, chicken nuggets – a nine year old kids dream menu.

He asked “Is this where they have chili?”

“Yes – is that what you want with your burger?” I innocently replied.

“Can I just have chili?”

“If you want – will that be enough for you to eat?”

"Yup – can I get the really big one?”


Fast forward to us nearing the end of our dinner. He started to sing “Beans, beans, the musical fruit …”

I began to understand, as he fastidiously dug each of the beans out of the rest of his chili that he was too full to finish.

I knew that I was right when set his spoon down and announced – “Well, that should load me up with enough farts to last the whole night. I can’t wait to get home to ‘show’ mom!”

Yeah – “precocious”.

Thursday, February 3

Things You Might Have Mentioned Earlier

Dearest co-worker,

I am very thankful that you were able to get us a new, “used’ printer for the office. I appreciate the opportunity to have colour printing that is not smeared like a 4-year-old’s finger painting. I was blessed by the encouragement you gave me when I mentioned setting it up this afternoon because I had a very important, time sensitive, colour project to print and I was eager to see what crisp, sharp, detailed goodness it would produce.

I was not as thankful, appreciative or encouraged when, shortly after you left work for the day, I spent 2 minutes setting it up and 3482 minutes using all my best MacGyver tricks to try to get it to print in colour – I cleaned, I re-aligned, I re-filled, I cried, I settled for finger painting.

The next morning you listened patiently while I complained about my failed efforts and then politely said, "Oh yes, the colour cartridge is defective. We’ll need to get a new one. I guess I should have mentioned that.”"

Ya think???

Tuesday, February 1

I Can’t Explain It Either

I love the smell of coffee, but can’t stand the taste – in anything.

I hate the smell of broccoli, but could eat it for every meal.

Except last week when the broccoli I bought was so over powering that by the next morning the whole apartment reeked of it. Opening the fridge was enough to make convince me that this particular batch belonged in the garbage can*, not in the vegetable crisper, and certainly not on my plate.

Two days later I decided I need to buy new baking soda for the still broccoli smelling fridge. Or maybe I’ll just buy some coffee.

*Hey – maybe my landlords read this blog – they brought my garbage can back up to my door this week!