Friday, October 31, 2008

Trick or Treating

Oooooooo…Happy Halloween to all you spooky witches and goblins. I love this holiday, mainly to see the little kids in their cute costumes…the little pirate, ballerina, and pumpkin. You open the door and they just stand there looking at you …hoping you know what to do…cuz they don’t get it. They are still trying to figure out why their parents have them dressed in odd clothing and have them talk to strangers.

I just hope I don’t see any what’s her name and whoses. That would be Hannah Montana and the Jonas Brothers dudes. Even old Kat has heard of them, cuz you can’t go anywhere without seeing their mugs on just about everything. I have a feeling I’ll see at least 5 of those little Hannahs. And numeri Jonases.

Not sure if PaulA and I will be dressing up to answer the door. Anytime PaulA needs a costume, he pulls out his college graduation gown. Thank god, he graduated…he’s used his black gown so much it was worth the price of admission. You can be a lot of things if you have the black gown to start…Nun, Dracula, Jonas Brother.

A couple of years ago, I was a beauty pageant ‘Miss.’ I wore one of my bridesmaid gowns, heels, and a sash. My lipstick and eye make-up were smudged across my face…not exactly in the lines. (I looked like a drunken bridesmaid…honest I wasn’t.) And my pageant banner said: “Miss Applied”. The trick or treaters totally didn’t get it….but if I wore it this year…they would. Oh, you are a drunk Hannah Montana.

I wonder if Brianna is thinking about going Trick or Treating. I hope not, at age 17. When I see a big kid come to the door looking for candy…I want to tell them to get a job. The ‘older’ girls usually come dressed like Raggedy Ann. I know they are definitely over 15….cuz they’re not dressed guessed it...Hannah Montana.

Duncandog is going to be dressed for Halloween tonight. I have a crimson and white BAMA T-shirt to put on him…a University of Alabama mascot. He’ll just have to work on his southern accent: “Hey ya’all this is Duncandog. If ya'all would just give me a little treat...I could do a little Hannah Montana for you...or Jonas Brother...your choice.”

Happy Halloween!

Thursday, October 30, 2008


Bri did it…she pressed the ‘submit’ button. That would be, the ‘submit’ button on the common application that is used to apply to colleges online. That might not seem like a big dealio, but it is. Because once it is sent, that sucker is sent…and there is no retrieving it…no sticking your hand in the blue metal mailbox....wait, is that illegal?…no begging the Post Office people to retrieve it...and threatening to go postal. What?...illegal again?.

Once you hit ‘submit’, the application is queued up at the college…instantaneously. One, two, three...presto. No more having to run to the Post Office with a big envelope, wait in line, pay extra postage, send it express…and then hope like hell it gets there. Hoping that the Postman didn’t put it in the outbox for Hong Kong.

I do love the efficient way of applying to colleges now. You can be a procrastinator and submit it two minutes before midnight of the due date…and Bang, it is on time. That is the coolest. We thought about trying that…just for goofers. What are we…stupid? Dumb idea. Just our luck, at that moment our computer would freeze…or Storm Zelda would blow up and knock us offline. Nightmare.

When you hit ‘submit’…it is so final…that you doubt what you have written. You’ve probably made a mistake, so you check and recheck. You’ve never had OCD in your life, but suddenly you’ve developed a bad case of APP-OCD. Okay, APP-OCD is a made up ailment, but if you’re applying online…you know what I am talking about…cuz you have it too. You are compelled to go over the information at least 45 times. So you recheck the ‘name of applicant.’ Wait… does Bri spell her name with one ‘N’ or two? Not sure now. Is her name Brian(n)a or Sweet Wishy of America?...Wait, that is too long to fit in the space.

I ‘submit’ to you that I never get BLOG-OCD…never. When I decide to post a blog, I hit ‘submit’ and never look back. I don’t check and recheck what I’ve written. What 'cha see, is what 'cha get. Just don’t go postal on me.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Manure Happens

The different bumper stickers, school stickers and accessories we apply to our car, tell a little something about each of us. They SHOUT-OUT an image as we go tooling down the road...without having to say it. A ‘Dartmouth College’ sticker says…this is one SMART head. ‘If You Don’t Vote, Don’t Whine’ …this is one TALKING head. ‘Save the Earth’ …this is one GREEN head. ‘Grateful Dead dancing bears’….this is one POT head. ‘Manure Happens’... this is one SHIT head.

I recently was driving behind a car that had a license plate with a chain link framing it. Without saying it, the chains say… “Hey...move back, jack…This is one BAD ASS in front of you.” Yep, any chains are definitely bad ass. Anytime you see someone with a chain…around their neck…or hanging from their pants…you better stay clear of the bad ass. Only thing was… the car with the chains…was a Honda. How bad ass can that person be?… Driving a pale blue, 4-door, compact, economical, fuel efficient Honda Civic. He would have been better with a bumper sticker that said: GOING POSTAL.

My Duncandog has an image to uphold, but unfortunately for him…it is something out of his control. After his latest haircut, I should have gotten him a chain link collar. I think he would have appreciated looking a little bit more BAD ASS, instead of the sissy look the groomer gave him. And a bumper sticker slapped to his rear end: ‘KAT THE OTHER WHITE MEAT’.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Kat's Head

In the early 90’s I used to watch a show called Herman’s Head. It was on TV for a few years, but probably most people never watched. Anyway, it was about a guy whose personalities, Sensitivity, Fear, Lust, Genius, were represented by actual people. Whenever Herman had an important decision to make, the different personalities would voice their opinions…and duke it out when they had disagreements.

I thought it was an interesting concept. So it got me thinking…..Hmmmmmm….. What goes on in the hollow container on top of my shoulders...with my personalities: Lazy Ass, Neurotic, Anal Retentive, Blogger. Here is a glimpse of Kat’s Head….

Situation: Linnyj and Pia call me for 9 holes of golf. Decision to make: Should I play?

Lazy Ass Kat: Don’t do it Kat. You will have to get off this couch, which isn’t easy after eating bon-bons and chips. Linnyj will probably want to play speed golf and then Pia will want to play another 9. Oh, and you’ll miss Oprah. So chill, Kat…have some more chips.

Neurotic Kat: Careful Kat. You could get toxins from the course that could make you sick…maybe you should stay home. But if you go, wear gloves on both hands. Also leave the umbrella at home, a thunderstorm might be brewing and just your luck you’ll get hit by lightening…you only have 9 lives.

Anal Retentive Kat: Go ahead and play Kat. Just remember to replace all your divots as you hack your way down the fairway. Count all your strokes, even the wiffy ones and the ones in the woods, sand and water. And if Linnyj is 2 minutes late arriving, that is only 120 seconds…not a let's cut her some slack this one time.

Blogger Kat: Forget it Kat. Don’t play today. You have way more important things to do. What could possibly be more important than writing a blog? You have at least 5 people reading…and you don’t want to disappoint.

A rumble ensues…the personalities duke it out….rock, paper, scissors…shoot………

Blogger Kat beats Lazy Ass, Neurotic, Anal Retentive Kat every time. Lucky you…you’re the recipient of another blog.

Monday, October 27, 2008

This Could Turn Ugly

Being from Vermont, I just can’t help but like cows. In Vermont, you see cows all over the place. Granted, they don’t walk the aisles of the Stop and Stop Dairy Dept. buying fat free milk, but they grace the beautiful VT landscape. You can actually learn a lot from a cow. If they are standing in the pasture, it’s gonna be a nice day. If they are laying down…it’s gonna rain. If they are facing East…you’re gonna have Chinese food for dinner.

I love cows so much that I have a little collection…my Cow Parade collection that I display on my kitchen windowsill. You know, the little cows that are decorated and painted with different themes. You might think that is a little kitschy…but the cows remind me of my home state and my best friends, Ben and Jerry. I am not a huge collector like some people who collect…spoons, Santas (my mom), coins, boyfriends. I just have a few cows.

I know a woman from the hair salon I frequent who has a bizarre collection...she collects ugly things. She started with a small cabinet of a few special ugly things…but her collection has grown to be a whole room of ugly stuff. Anything she deems as ugly, she buys and proudly displays. Her friends have joined in on all the ugliness and have helped add to her collection.

Although her collection sounds weirdly interesting…I would never want to visit her house and check out her ugly things…not that I am above ugly. I’m just afraid she might have taken a picture of me sitting in the salon chair with goo in my hair…and have it hanging on her “Wall of Uglies”…yikes.

And forget having her visit my house. If she came over and saw my Cow Parade collection…I would be afraid that she would like it….which could turn ugly.

Friday, October 24, 2008

Read My Lips

In the late 80's we bought our first CD player…so I trotted off to the record store (I sound so horsey) to buy our first CD…no iTunes digital store back then. I knew exactly what CD I wanted to purchase…Milli Vanilli.

I thought Milli Vanilli was great. They had won a Grammy…which was taken back from them, once it was determined that they were a fraud. Boy, do I know how to pick ‘em. Not only did they not write their music, not play their instruments…but they didn’t even sing their songs. They were masters of lip synching.

I guess lip synching is not all that uncommon. Ashley Simpson lip-synched on Saturday Night Live, but to me that was no biggie…at least she was lip-synching to her own music. Although I thought that Irish jig she morphed into was very awkward.

Yep, lip synchers are quite common…even around the world. How about that little Chinese girl at the summer Olympics opening ceremony who didn’t actually sing. Some other little Chinese girl sang for her, because the Chinese officials decided she wasn’t pretty enough. (that’s another blog.)

Our friend, Dig, suggests the word “elephant” is a great word to use for lip-synching…especially when you don’t know the words to the song or you forget them. “Elephant, elephant” when said repeatedly, keeps your lips moving so you appear to be singing. …it worked for him in high school chorus.

Then there are people who would never stoop so low as to lip-synch…they would never pull a Milli Vanilli. They sing right out-loud…with their own voices…no “elephant, elephant” for them.

But OUCH, sometimes you wish they would.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Blogger Extraordinaire

Whenever I am filling out paperwork that asks for my occupation, I hesitate. Hmmm…What exactly is my occupation? I know I’m busy doing something…but what exactly do I do? Then I think of all my odd jobs. It is hard to fit….driver, banker, sexpot, organizer, shopper, maid, cook (never on a weekend) into one small space…so I conveniently use….homemaker. Years ago I used to put down: housewife. But I could just as easily have put: domestic engineer… better half…PaulA’s Wife…Financially dependent….Stepford Wife (After all, I do live in CT.)

Recently Bri was completing a college application (It’s about time Wish!)…and she was stumped. So she had to ask me for a little help. “Hey Mom…I know what Dad does….but what’s your occupation? What should I put down? Should I put Bri’s Mom? (Very Funny, Wishy.)

I yelled back… “You mean to tell me, you don’t know? I’m so surprised. My occupation is blogger…OR…Blogger Extraordinaire….your choice.” And so she wrote down ‘blogger’ on her college application. (Thanks Wishy, I feel so validated.) She did leave off the Extraordinaire part…which would have elevated my status among all the other bloggers. Then I thought….should Bri really be listing my occupation as blogger? But I rationalized…Wait a minute Kat, what is the college gonna do? Call Bri and tell her...your mom can’t be a blogger.

Actually what most people don’t know is….a blogger and homemaker are very similar. As a homemaker, you’re sitting at home…drinking coffee, talking nonsense with your friends on the phone, coming up with excuses as to why things are not getting done around the house, while your ass grows. As a blogger, you’re sitting at home...drinking coffee, writing nonsense about your family and friends on your computer, coming up with excuses as why things are not getting done around the house, while your ass grows. See…….what I’m talkin’ about here.

AND with both blogger and homemaker…you get ZERO glory and ZERO money.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Let My Cell Phone Go

We recently had an incident…Wishy’s cell phone went MIA. Bri and I both looked everywhere for it…even through the garbage. (I’m still wondering how I got that nasty job.) We also called her phone using my cell and our home phone. No Answer. Nothing.

The case, however, was solved in a couple of hours. A friend of Bri’s sent her a message on Facebook and told her that he had just texted her cell phone and got a weird sounding text back…nothing like Bri. The text response read: Who is dis?” …Not exactly the way Bri talks. (Plus she knows her friend’s number.) Someone had Sweet Wishy’s phone.

So Bri texted the person: “thanks for finding my phone…if you intend on returning it, please text me…but if I don’t hear from you…I am turning off the service and it will be no good to you.” Did she hear from the person?….No answer. Nothing.

This might have been a professional job…a cell phone kidnapping and they were looking for some ransom money. Maybe Bri needed to do more to get her phone back. Maybe she needed to plead with her cell phone captors…beg…grovel…Let my cell phone go. Maybe she should have responded:

I know you are somewhere out there with my precious cell phone…please give it up. It means nothing to you and everything to me. We’ve been together for a couple of years and it would just tear me up inside, if I could never see my cell phone again…never see the pink bedazzles I’ve attached…never hear its ring tones. Whatever it takes, I am willing to do. Just be nice to it…it has never done you any harm. It means more to me than to you. I beg of you, please respond and let me know how I can go about getting my beloved cell phone back. I won’t get the police involved…I’ll keep it between the two of us. I will wait to hear from you.

Maybe Sweet Wishy needs to watch more cop shows….

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Dog Trains Kat

Our lawn looks better than it has ever looked and that would be “no thanks” to Duncandog. It would be “yes thanks” to ChemLawn…or EXCUSE ME, now TruGreen. Same company, more environmentally friendly sounding name.

Anyway, after 10 years with Organicare, our lawn was starting to look like it needed help…the kind you can’t get with a wimpy fertilizer. What was needed was something bad ass…that would be…weed killer and chemically engineered products. Wow…what a difference a few chemicals can make.

Plus, what a difference keeping your dog from peeing and crapping on your lawn can make. This summer we were away for a month and when we returned, our lawn looked like a turf builder commercial….thick, green, lush. People were stopping to take pictures. Promise. Chemlawn/Trugreen did its part and Duncandog’s absence… did its part.

Now my mission…keep the damn Duncandog from burning out our lawn. I decided to train Duncan to do his dirty business in the woods. So in the mornings I would put a leash on him…walk him across the backyard lawn and tell him to “go in the woods.” At first when we walked across the lawn, he tried to stop and “do it” right there. But I would tug him by the leash always saying……. “Duncan, go in the woods.” This is one smart dog and I could tell by the smart ass look he gave me…he knew exactly what I was insisting.

After reaching success in just a week of using this method…I decided to graduate Duncandog…no more leash. So now I would follow him outside…just to make sure. As we walked toward the woods, he would try to stop and “do it” on our beautiful chem lawn. He’d look at me, “Thanks Kat for such a nice lawn for me to pee and crap on.” I would insist, “No Duncandog…go in the woods.” For a few more weeks, I continued to follow his rear end to the woods.

Problem: Now the mornings are getting colder…I don’t want to follow his ass outside through the cold wet grass. I know he’s a smart dog and has been well trained….so I decide to hang back on the top step and watch…let my pupil go alone. I yell to him as he heads out by himself… “go in the woods Duncan.” I am so pleased with my training as I watch him trot towards the woods. Wait, he is stopping … in the middle of the lawn. He turns his head back to me…then looks forward toward the woods…and then pees right there. I run down the steps and chase him through the yard, yelling, “go in the woods.”

Okay….I got it…it just took me a while. Our dog knows how to train a Kat.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Joe the Plumber

If you watched the Presidential debate last week you’ve heard who won …Joe the Plummer. After the debate, Joe was immediately plunged into the spotlight. He’s an instant celebrity…receiving more than his 15 minutes of fame. If you google his Wikipedia…you’ll see he’s arrived. There is even an online effort to get Joe to run for U.S. Congress. Slogan idea: Vote Joe the Plummer. He’ll roto-root cloggy Washington politics.

Doggone it, Joe Six-pack…you’ve just been replaced by Joe the Plumber. Heck, Golly, I liked Sarah Palin’s Joe Six-pack reference for the “normal American” wink, wink. But Joe the plumber might be a better symbol. Statistics show that most Americans don’t have six-packs…they’re aren’t that toned.

People can relate to Joe the Plumber….the common man. He exemplifies the struggles the everyday man faces to get ahead and live the American Dream. Okay, I can see the attraction to Joe the Plumber …butt, too much of Joe the Plumber…is a little too draining. Maybe McCain might want to think about using me to represent a cross-section of America. I,too, have a story. His next political sound bite could go like this:

My friends, let me tell you about my friend, Kat the Blogger. She’s an American blogger just trying to get ahead in the world. She’s been working hard blogging and making no progress with her life. Did I mention…she is making no progress with her life? I am here to tell you how I can help Kat the Blogger and others just like her. First of all, I am a maverick…with maverick ideas about how to help bloggers. I am not the same as all the other Cyperspace insiders. I’m someone who marches to the stroke of my own keyboard. These are tough times. I fight…for Kat the bloggers of the world. I fight…to restore pride in the blogger party. I will bring change. I do not have the same old blogging politics that have been going on for years in cyberspace. I fight for you….Kat the blogger.

Okay, I admit…maybe the idea of Kat the blogger replacing Joe the Plumber as the go-with-the-flow working class symbol is leaking in substance…I mean, lacking. If you listen carefully, you can hear my dreams as the next American icon going down the drain.

Besides, the best thing about Joe the Plumber…you can take a better crack at him.

Friday, October 17, 2008

A Different Tune

We have a small clothing store in town that has been around for years, and has always done a great amount of business. And that has amazed me, because they are the biggest snobs going. You would think that they would be nice to their clientele…but these saleswomen have a crazy attitude that we should feel fortunate to shop there. It is mainly two women that have their noses suspended in the air. (BTW, the kids that help out there are very sweet.) For some reason, these two always give off a hoity-toity vibe. Both Hoity and Toity have given me the cold shoulder…if I get any shoulder at all.

And it is something I have never understood. So is it just me? Actually, it isn’t because I have heard other people say the same thing. But don’t get me wrong…they are nice to some…probably the women who enter the store with their credit cards taped to their foreheads. I have actually seen Hoity and Toity fall all over these women… “How can I help you…do your feet hurt…do they need a massage….can I suck your toes.”

I have seen them suck-up to these women. They will tell them how great they look in an outfit…when if you polled 100 people….99 of them would say they looked like crap (the husband has to lie…if he wants to live another day.) Speaking of husbands...I’ve heard Hoity and Toity give suggestions on how to hide the cost of their purchases from their hubbys…just split the expenses between numerous credit cards…wala.

I haven’t been to this store in a while…for good reason. But today I was on a mission to find a dress to wear to a wedding, and the store is close by. So I was ready for the big chill when I entered the cold shoulder zone. But interestingly enough, I found Hoity and Toity singing a different tune.

First of all, I was the only one in the store…and it was the middle of the afternoon. Where was all their loyal clientele? Where were the ladies that got their toes sucked regularly?

Hoity and Toity couldn’t give me enough attention. Before my eyes, I watched them turn into Hospitable and Attentive. (HA) They brought numerous dresses for me to try on…showered me with compliments…told me how thin I was…how great I looked in the dresses…that I was like a model…they were major league flinging it. I wasn’t buying it….and I definitely wasn’t buying.

Now that the economy is changing, people like these women are singing a different tune. Customers are not flocking in…to willy nilly spend their disposable money. These stores actually need business…so they have to be nice to everyone. They have to change their tune and make every customer feel welcomed in the store. The only problem is….I remember their old tune.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Perception is Reality

During the afternoon when I am in my car, I listen to my favorite man/woman DJ team. They have a great rapport with each other and I especially enjoy listening to their banter. I’ve never seen what they look like ….until now…when I saw them in the local paper.

Their looks are absolutely nothing like what I had envisioned. And I hate to say….my vision version was much better than real life…too bad for them. And now, too bad for me!! I should have known, a good speaking voice is not an indication of good looks…wow. I’m not saying they are bow-wow’s ville, but for some reason I had pictured them like Brad and Angelina. And is that really fair?

Voices and looks don’t always match-up. Haven’t you heard a voice from someone that suprises you...sounding nothing like you expected?…Like a pretty petite woman…who opens her mouth and sounds like a truck driver for United Van Lines on a 3 day cross-country trip, after 5 hours of sleep, and chain smoking 4 cartons of cigarettes…OR a gruff mountain man with a beard, wearing shit kickers…who sounds like the mayor from Munchkinland on speed.

Then there is the sound of our own voices. I don’t know many people who when they hear a recording of themselves say…”damn, I sound good.” Although there are those who talk so much…you might think they do. I swear, if I had an Enlgish accent…I would love my voice and never stop talking.

So now I am going to wipe away all traces of the picture I saw of my favorite DJ team and continue to picture them as Brad and Angelina. Why spoil my reality? Perception is reality.

With a blog, not only can’t you see me……you can’t hear my voice! But in case you were wondering, I look like…Julia Roberts. And sound...even better than I look.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

College Tour Rant

After a while, college tours all run together. They all have libraries, dorms, gyms, and lecture halls...but the last tour that Brianna and I took, will always stand out.

When I first saw the little girl holding the hand of one of the college tour guides, I thought…how cute. The tour girl must have a little sister visiting or maybe this little girl was a family friend. But it didn’t take long before I realized…this little girl was no relation to the college tour guide…she was a child from hell. And there were two…she had a younger sister.

Picture the two wildest kids you can think of and then multiply that times 10. They did belong to someone…they were with their spineless mother. You would have thought the mother was back on the farm in Idaho…she was nonexistent in presence and reprimand. Neither the mother, or their older sister visiting the school, seemed to acknowledge the family resemblance…and take responsibility for them.

So as the tour guides walked backwards (this must be in the college tour guide handbook), the kids walked backwards with the guides…and tripped them…numerous times. Then the two girls got in a pissing war…of words with each other…drowning out what the guides were trying to tell us. When they weren’t tripping up the guides, they were running and chasing each other through the group, walking on top of stone walls, running up and down stairs, standing on chairs, running around the stage…and my personal favorite….rolling down hills. I secretly wished they would roll through dog crap, but, unfortunately, that did not happen.

The highlight of their antics was during the tour of the campus church. While one of them was splashing holy water around in the font, the other was running up and down the pews. The mother finally took action. She caught up with the one in the pews...right before the girl played the organ…grabbed her by her hair and yanked her back. But the child in the holy water still had a chance to wash her face.

The tour guides never said a word about all the commotion going on around them. Now and then, you would hear some mumblings or see eye rolling from our group…but basically…Nobody said Nothing. (That’s because PaulA was not there.) We probably didn’t want to jeopardize our child’s chances of getting into their school. So this irresponsible woman and her kids have moved on…to ruin the next college tour.

I hate to be ranting like an old cane, or is that stick…in the mud…but when attending a college tour…leave young siblings at home. Especially if they are under age 10, have an attention span of a gnat, or have horns protruding out of their heads.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

LOST dog

Duncandog is one smart dog. As soon as his invisible fence is not working…he crosses it. It doesn’t take him long before he knows…he can jump his fence, blow his popsicle stand, get out of his dodge. He’s outta here…not sticking around for any goodbyes. No sayonaras from the Duncandog.

When I first realized my damn dog was missing…my heart jumped with joy. I mean, skipped a beat. Poor Dundandog LOST…all alone in the big bad world. What would become of his poochie butt? I could just picture him with his head hanging low, slowly walking…down the rail road tracks…looking for an old abandoned train car to live in. Eating crumbs off the ground. Dying of thirst. My poor Duncandog. Dreaming of his family that paid him so much attention.

“Oh Duncandog…oh Duncan,” I bellowed. How could I ever forgive myself for ever trash talking him? I hung my head in shame, as I walked through the ‘hood’ looking for him. I vowed to make it up to him and be the best dog owner ever.

Not so fast…wait a minute…is that 4-legged movement I see next door. Is that my Duncandog in the new neighbor’s yard? Could that be Duncandog hanging out with their landscaper guys? It looks like him…but this dog couldn’t be him…this dog looks too delirious with happiness. He’s jumping and prancing and wagging his tail. That couldn’t be my sad dog lost in the big bad world.

OMG, I think that is my damn dog. That’s Duncandog… getting attention from 4 guys…saying nice things, rubbing his back and scratching him behind his ears. Wait, did one of them just give him part of his lunch…a roast beef sandwich with Swiss cheese, lettuce, tomato on pumpernickel.…his all time favorite? OMG…that SOB (Son of a Female dog)…is having lunch and playing games next door…while I am wracked with worry over his well-being.

I walk over to wring Duncandog’s neck and yank him home…I mean, hug his neck and tell him how worried I was. One of the guys reassures me, “Hey Lady…I hope you weren’t worried about your dog. He’s been hanging out with us and he’s even been inside the house.” I look at Duncan who is smiling so big…so big I can see his canines. “OH really!!! Thanks …You don’t know how sick with worry I’ve been.”

Just wait Duncandog….wait ‘till I get your poochie butt home. You can stop smiling anytime.

Monday, October 13, 2008

It's My Birthday...And I'll Cry If I Want To

When your birthday is the thirteenth of the month, you have an affinity for the number 13. Unlike most people, you never fear it and you never think of it as unlucky. Heck if you did, you would lock yourself in your room with your lap top. Wait, I already do that. People with birthdays on the 13th of the month feel very lucky about unlucky 13. They will stay on the 13th floor of a hotel…if there is one. They will order a baker’s dozen of bagels…and even wear Number 13 on their back…like my good friend, A. Rod.

My parents tell me that I was born on Saturday the 13th and not Friday the 13th. I can’t check them on this. I couldn’t tell you what day of the week I was born on back in 1905. I am not as smart as Forest Gump, so I guess I’ll have to take my parent’s word for it. If it was a Friday, they probably wanted to spare me from growing up like Jason from the movie, Friday the 13th? But I don’t think that would have happened. I don’t especially like wearing a hockey mask. What a card Jason is…you don’t know whether to laugh or scream.

Speaking of cards (Like my segway?) I love opening birthday cards…especially when money falls into my lap top. My neighborhood friends and I celebrate our birthdays by going to dinner. The highlight of the dinner, other than the dessert, and the wine and the vodka…and the wine and the vodka …are the cards. Sometimes the cards are very nice…about how good you still look…which are appreciated. Especially after receiving one from me, who cares to give the very best…in-your-face…you-are-so-old….everything-is-sagging birthday cards. You don’t know whether to laugh or scream.

The thing I like MOST about birthdays….is not just the gifts that I am showered with by all my adoring fans. Nope. It is that on “MY” day, I will get a card, phone call or an email from people that I don’t regularly see or keep in touch with.

So, it’s a good thing my birthday comes once a year. But if it came twice a year…not only would I get more gifts….get more cards…get more birthday dinners…I would hear from old friends twice as often. But there is a downside…………I would be over 100 !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Yikes!

It’s my birthday and I’ll cry if I want to……………..

Thursday, October 9, 2008

4 Action Verbs

Picking and spitting, and digging and blowing…these are just 4 verbs describing the action in the dug-out of a baseball game. If you’ve watched baseball on television, you know what I am talking about. Inevidentably, whenever the camera pans over to the dug-out, in-between plays…you are seeing something that isn’t pretty.

The camera will catch a player with his finger up his nose...a regular coal-miner’s son. (The brother of the coal miner’s daughter.) I am sure he’s been told by his mother…a thousand times…that this is something to be done in private. Unfortunately, this is not what is happening…the excavating is seen by a million or so viewers.

Personally, I think the spitting verb is the worse. A quick saliva spit might be okay, but I never understood spitting...unless, of course, you are the spitting image of someone…or you are within spitting distance, of someone who is the spitting image of you. A spit of sunflower seeds looks disgusting when it emerges as a shower spray …but the worse is a spit that includes black, nasty chewing tobacco. I know spit happens…but I draw the line in the dirt with chew.

Yep, it is these types of activities that the camera people want to entertain us with in-between plays. Granted, there is a lot of down time with baseball. I know I am looking for things to do in-between plays, but spitting is not one of them. That’s when I usually go for a bowl of ice cream or paint my toe nails.

At the end of the game, the TV network replays all the great catches, runs, steals, home runs and puts them all together....a montage of great moments from the game. I dare them to replay the action in the dug-out…all the picking, spitting, digging, and blowing shots. A montage of this action would be an instant hit on YouTube.

After the Angels lost in the final game to the Red Sox in the ALCS …(yippee)…the cameras panned over to the Angels dug-out. So after we’ve watched the players pick, spit, blow and dig…now we have to watch them cry, sob, wail, and blubber.

Baseball dug-outs are not pretty.

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Camp Linnyj

I’m having T-shirts made that say: I SURVIVED Camp Linnyj. Last weekend Linnyj and Mickster invited us and the candyKanes (a very sweet couple) to Nantucket. Albeit, the house was not exactly a camp…it was a first-rate gorgeous home. So I’m not talking about the accommodations. I’m talking about surviving Linnyj…that girl can run a Kat ragged.

Camp Linnyj itinerary: First…a two and a half hour ferry ride… through choppy water. How choppy you ask? The two little girls sitting next to us might have been able to tell you, but they were very busy...crying and spewing their lunch through their mouths and noses. Kats aren’t known for swimming, so the girls' commotion added to my fear and uneasiness. And speaking of uneasy…that would be my stomach.

After we were Nantucket side…It only took a few hours before my stomach was esophageal sphincter side up. Next on the itinerary: Happy Hour…a mystery glass of vodka mixed with something red, prepared by Counselor Linnyj. Then a great dinner out…where she force fed me a couple of cosmos...if I remember correctly.

After allowing a little sleep...the next morning it was rise and shine. The main activity of the day…a 20 mile bike ride into the wind. After which, Counselor Linnyj made us shop…til you dropped. Or in my case stumbled…that would be the cobblestone’s fault. Next activity: Happy Hour and dinner. The following day Linnyj had golf planned, but PaulA and I left the island in the morning. We heard she makes you run the golf course with your golf bag tied to your back, and drop for 50 push-ups on each fairway. I hope the candyKanes didn’t suck at that activity.

I always thought I was in shape until I went to Camp Linnyj. Linnyj finished the bike ride first and Yours Truly brought up the rear. PaulA stayed with my behind…to pick me up in case I took a header. Whoever came up with the expression “It’s as easy as riding a bike” has never ridden 20 miles into a strong head wind. There were times I was pedaling 40 mph and going nowhere…the same place that bridge in Alaska is going. I admit, Counselor Linnyj does have a little compassion for her campers…a soft side…when she’s not beating your ass into the ground. She did come back with her SUV to pick me up. But by then the house was just 100 yards away. Thanks anyway, Counselor Linnyj…but I got it from here!

So I SURVIVED Camp Linnyj. I’ll be selling those T-shirts on eBay if you care to buy one. They’re only five bucks a piece…but time with Counselor Linnyj….PRICELESS.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Geniuses Only

With Bri already in her Senior year, we’ve been looking at many colleges for next fall. We are finding that, although the colleges are different…big vs small, urbs vs burbs….there is one thing they all have in common….their underlying message: Good luck getting into OUR school.

The colleges send you enticing brochures to get you to register for their information sessions and tours. Basically the info session is an hour long talk…when they tell you how great their school is, how hard it is to get into, and how you better be Numero Uno from your graduating class. They give you the enormous number of applicants that applied and the whopping percentage that were sent skinny rejection letters…and they SMILE, a smug smile, the entire time they tell you this.

Then they follow the talk with a slideshow presentation of kids looking into microscopes, working with computers, wearing protective eye wear….all looking so intelligent. The admissions people do everything they can…to impress upon you how extremely selective they are…and that you don’t have a rat’s chance in hell of getting your ass in their school.

Then it’s time for the tour…time to check out the campus and its facilities. I can’t wait to check out the students on campus. Bri is always interested too…she wants to get a good look at the kids…to see what they are like. I want to get a good look at the kids…to see what geniuses look like. So we walk by some dude riding one of those extra long skate boards…so this is a genius? And that girl sitting in the dirt …she’s a genius? And that guy wearing the Homer Simpson t-shirt…is a genius too? So all 20,000 students at this school are all freaking geniuses?…Studying rocket science, and electrical-mechanical-contractual-biochemical-computer engineering? But I never see the kid with the protective eye wear…Where is that kid??

The pressure builds….I start looking at the people standing next to us in our tour group. The Competition. The mild and meek girl from Schenectady…WRONG. She is really another freaking genius in disguise…as an unassuming girl from a small town with a goofy name. I start thinking of ways to knock her off.

I think universities inflate their status so they can justify charging an unprecedented gazillion dollars for tuition. They pump themselves up and try to make you feel like you are damn lucky to be admitted…that way you will be happy handing over gobs and gobs of money to attend. They want you to feel barely worthy…and that maybe you should even offer more than the asking price.

So Seniors…good luck to you, it is a cold, cold world out there. I hope you shine like the brightest bulb in the frig…before the admissions people shut the door in your face…and put your light out…while they smile ever so smugly.

Don’t worry though….If you don’t shine, like the 100 watt bulb that you are…for their school….You will definitely shine somewhere else.

Monday, October 6, 2008

Theme Song

Do you know the old Television show theme songs? You might be too young for some…but there is always TV Land where you can get up to speed on all the classics. I’ve always loved the song for Green Acres. It was a great show with a great theme song. People still sing it…I heard someone singing it just yesterday. “Green Acres is the place to be…Farm living is the life for me.” Okay, actually that was me…but I’m sure other highly intelligent people sing it too.

Some of those old shows had the best theme songs. Don’t cha think? Gilligan’s Island, “Sit right down and I’ll tell a tale.” My favorite part was “a three hour tour.” The Brady Bunch, “Here’s a story about man named Brady.” The list is endless… All in the Family, with their off-key singing…Addams Family, The Jeffersons, Mary Tyler Moore, Laverne and Shirley, Cheers, Loveboat. These songs had the best lyrics that told what the show was about.

That is what is missing from today’s shows…theme songs that describe the show. So I got to thinking…maybe I could write a theme song. Maybe I could write one for the show 24… which I hear is premiering soon. You know the show I’m talking about. The one staring superman Jack Bauer who works for CTU (Counter Terrorist Unit)...who whispers instead of talks, and runs around, saving L.A. from nuclear attacks by bad guys on a weekly basis. I just love a reality show.

The theme song they use for 24 is an instrumental…it doesn’t tell you anything. So, here’s my attempt at an improvement. This is to be sung to the tune from Green Acres:

Jack Bauer is the man to be
Dangerous living is the life for he
Jack spreadin’ out so far and wide
Man of-the-hour is always on our side.

L.A. is where he’d rather stay
He gets allergic smelling the Bay
We just adore a Jack Bauer view
Dah-ling we love you but give us Phil Donahue

Okay…I still have to fix that last line…it just rhymed so nicely that I couldn’t help myself. Plus you young folks probably never heard of Phil Donahue. (For the record…he was the first Oprah.)
Here’s another attempt. Same first verse…but new ending:

Jack Bauer is the man to be
Dangerous living is the life for he
Jack spreadin’ out so far and wide
Man of-the-hour is always on our side.

L.A. is where he’d rather stay
He gets allergic smelling the Bay
We just adore the Jack Bauer crew
Dah-ling we love you and your friends at CTU.

Is that any better!!!???

Friday, October 3, 2008

Still Happy Together - 27 Years

We all know the story about Mary, Joseph and “no room in the inn”…but PaulA and I have our own “no room in the inn” story. Granted, we are no Mary and Joseph…and our inn story is not written in the Bible. We are neither that old or that righteous.

27 years ago today…we were married in Burlington, Vermont at the height of fall foliage season. The wedding ceremony was very memorable…most notably because our friends BillyA and TerryL played their acoustic guitars and sang, “So happy together.” If you aren’t familiar with this song, it is by the Turtles…not to be confused with the Monkees…different species. Anyway, that song has special meaning and memories to PaulA and I, because it was done by the best of friends.

27 years ago…Our reception was held at the Marble Island Resort outside of Burlington on Lake Champlain. It was a F-U-N reception/party…that started around 6…until 11 p.m. When it was time for us to bid our rowdy, partying friends farewell...we hoped that the place would still be standing the next day.

We headed back into Burlington for the Radisson Hotel. As we approached the front desk…the clerks looked uncomfortable and started scattering. We soon found out…they gave our room away…there was no room in the inn. We had made a reservation in advance and let them know we would be arriving late…but they gave it away. Undoubtedly, to someone who slipped them some cashola.

Anyway, the Radisson called the other hotels in the area….but there were no rooms available. After all, it was leaf peeping season and Parent’s Weekend at UVM. They finally found a room for us about 30 minutes north on the lake. Which happened to be… the same place we just left…where all our wild and crazy friends were partying/staying.

So what did the newlywed couple of 6 hours do? They headed back to my parent’s house…good ole Alice and Jerry’s. We knocked on the door and the house lights went on. My dad came to the door…to find his daughter and her new husband. You should have seen his face…priceless. Jerr was hoping that PaulA didn’t change his mind about the whole marrying thing. After some explanation…the new couple spent their wedding night with the rents.

Thank god Alice and Jerry had room in the inn. I’m sure Mary and Joseph would have liked the option of staying in their house…over that smelly stable. No sheep in Alice and Jerr’s place.

Happy 27th Anniversary, PaulA. Cheers to Us!!!

Thursday, October 2, 2008

"K" is for

We decided on a little impromptu trip, so we needed to dispose of our dog….I mean, put him some place where he would be taken care of. I think you know the place I am talking about…a place where dogs are housed, when their owners abandon them. You see, I can’t say the K word, because if I do…Duncandog goes ballistic…off the wall, with happiness. And this K word doesn’t stand for Kookie…which is something that would make normal dogs go ballestic…this “K” is for Kennel.

Duncandog loves the K place. Just one mention of the Kennel and he starts jumping up and down, all over me, and then runs for the door. I’m still trying to understand it. After we get there…he pulls me so hard on the leash, I almost face plant. While I check him in, he excitedly starts sniffing around and meets up with the resident Kennel cat…who hisses at him…. “Chill you stupid dog, this a damn Kennel…a freaking slammer….not Club Med.” He then goes off with the attendant to his dog quarters…and never looks back. As I watch his poochie butt turn around to leave, I think, “Thanks a lot Duncandog…after all I do for you…no sad look? You trader. Couldn’t you at least fake it?”

So we’re back…but I wait at home before I pick him up. I time his pick-up perfectly…two minutes before 12 o’clock. They don’t charge for the next day until after 12 noon. You see, I want as much peace from my dog as I can get. I mean, I want Duncandog to enjoy all his time at the Kennel. When I check out, they give me his report card.

I guess it is a cute idea…but come on…a report card for dogs. I do have to say, he got a glowing report so I am kinda proud of him. I’m thinking of framing his report card…and bragging to all my friends. Let’s see …it says: Duncan enjoyed getting to explore outside and spend time with us during his playtime! He enjoyed all of his food. He “eliminated” regularly. Duncan is a very sweet, good boy. He has such a loving temperament.“Nice comments Duncan….but next time I want to see some more A’s.”

The best thing about the Kennel…is that when Duncandog gets home…he is very tired. He hits the floor for the remainder of the afternoon…and puts aside his FBI duties of following me around. He’s probably dreaming…of the next time he goes to the K place. That’s funny…I’m dreaming ….of the next time he goes to the K place.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

I Approve

“This is John McCain and I approve this message.” “This is Barack Obama and I approve this message.” How many times will we hear political ads between now and the November Presidential election? Do these promo spots really help campaigns? Does the amount of spending for political ads, really equate to more votes? Hmm...that gets me thinking. If there really is something to getting your face out there…maybe a little Kat face time would help me.

Maybe I should come up with a 30 second spot for MySpace, or YouTube to increase my readership….a little promo to show my stuff. If I directed my own video promo, it would go something like this:

Camera: Close-up of Kat (but not too close…back that up, dude!)…sitting at her lap top staring at the screen. Hands on the keyboard in blogger position. People of all ages, race, ethnicities and sexes standing behind her. The American flag flying.

Music: a song playing in the background….something patriotic….something American. Okay, let’s go with Neil Diamond’s “Sweet Caroline.”

Voice-over Person: a booming, assertive voice announces, “Kat, the All-American blogger. She will expand your world…and give you insightful views of topical subjects. With only a few irritatingly, mindless blogs regarding random thoughts and boring family stories, and only a few hints of absurdity…she will enlighten your day. Check Kat out every time you sign-on to your computer…you will not be disappointed. She promises to keep her promise. And that’s a promise. Promise.”

Fade: Camera slowly pulls back…shots of Kat kissing babies…shaking hands with her blog supporters, playful puppies in the foreground…fireworks burst into the shape of Kat’s face. Camera fades away to the American flag.

Kat’s voice: "This is katOUT and I approve this message.”