Thursday, August 13, 2009


Okay, I was going to finish up 27 Things, but something called vacation happened, meaning I didn't get around to it. I thought about it. Really, I did! I did! I had visions of nanos dancing in my head. However, I had to go visit my family, which was surprisingly relaxing. Maybe it was because I was staying with one of my brothers. It's so much easier to stay with my male relatives than with my female relatives. It likely has something to do with me feeling free to change what I wanted while I was there. My sisters might have gotten offended had I come to their homes and changed their decor (though I am invited to come clean whenever I'm in the mood), but my brother barely blinked when I explained that his bath mat didn't match his shower curtain, and therefore I had bought him a new coordinating one and proceeded to fill his house with other accessories I deemed necessary for my stay, such as matching kitchen towels, the Animatrix and the Matrix Trilogy. (The whole set was on sale for only $10! Who can beat that?)

So I didn't finish up on time. My brother, newly moved into his apartment, had no Internet connection (which I only advise you try out if you like the people you are staying with). I barely even got close to any electronic device unless you count the times I tried to pry the cell phone out of one of my nephew's hands. But I figured since I can't complete my assignments until next week, I might as well use this blog to discuss an important topic that has been bugging me for a while:

Horrible books.

I am not what one would call a book snob. I can't afford to be because I'm a Sci-Fi fan. And Sci-Fi fans can get really, really weird. But there are some books and movies that I hate, hate, hate! (Tyler Perry better hope he never runs into me in a dark alley because it is on!) However, there is one book I completely loathe, and lately it's been bugging me that people ask for it, so I have chosen to use this forum to get my feelings off my chest.

The Giving Tree is the worst book in the world.

For those of you who have never read the Giving Tree, don't check it out. It will just give it more circulation. I'm not even going to link you to it.

I hate it that much.

I'll save you the time and give you the summary: it's about a (female) tree with low self-esteem who so wants affection she is willing to let a male literally cut her down if that's what makes him happy. I'm surprised the tree doesn't just flat out ask, "Why won't you love me?" The male is dissatisfied with life, and instead of realizing he needs therapy (or a personality transplant), the tree keeps offering things to keep him appeased. Which was fine when she was just offering him apples. But he wasn't satisfied with only the apples. He needed more. At this point a smart tree would have told the male, "Maybe you should go play inside for a while." But, like a lot of naive women out there, she's offering him her branches ...

And the keys to her car even though she knows his license is suspended and he has no insurance.

Still, he remains unhappy. This was the perfect time for the tree to tell him, "You know, this just isn't working out," or "Perhaps you should see other shrubbery." Even a not-so-smart tree would have said, "We need to talk," which will scare off 9 out of 10 men (or 999 out of every 1000 if you combine this with shutting off the TV). Instead the tree offers the male even more of herself. She gives, and gives, and gives. He takes, and takes, and takes. Why? Because this is what we do when someone offers you something with no strings attached. Don't believe me? Observe the sample table action at CostCo. At the end, the tree is nothing but a stump, abandoned long ago by the male she gave everything to, and then the grumpy troll of a man comes back, and for some stupid reason, she's happy. I don't know why she's happy...wait, I do know why!!!!!

It's because she's pathetic.

When I see the guy who almost blew up my house and me along with it, do I jump for joy? Heck no! I look at him and think, "He tried to kill me! I hate him! I hate him! And I still don't have a microwave over my stove!" Do I invite him over and say, "Look at the big empty spot you left in my kitchen! Isn't it great how I can hear outside without opening the patio door? Oh, and PG&E was nice enough to patch that leak in my gas line." Nope. We're on waiving terms, meaning we waive when there are witnesses around while I secretly plot his death.

Okay, now it's no longer a secret.

But this's like she's suffering from Stockholm Syndrome. "There he is! The guy who completely destroyed me! How wonderful!" She welcomes him with open arms...

Oh, that's right.

She can't.

Because he cut them off.

I know, there are some of you out there who think this is a wonderful book, or that I'm reading too much into it. And most likely if you think it's a wonderful book you probably have a Y chromosome. Several men have told me they just love this book. Which is great to know up front, because this is my cue to leave while I'm ahead. It's on my list of questions to ask early on along with, "Do you think Hawaii is part of the United States?" and, "What's your FICO score?"

Now that I have gotten this off my chest, it's your turn. What is the worst book you have ever read? What makes it so freakin' horrible? Here's some 80s music to listen to while figure out which book gives you nightmares or makes you so mad you wish they could reimburse you for the time it took to read it.

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Michael Jackson and the Future of Libraries

I was in Telis, listening to a patron claim SPL should not have sent his account to collections because we had neglected to send him a certified singing telegram to remind him his book was due in December, when I read the news.

Michael Jackson was dead.

At least that’s what TMZ said. When it comes to gossip, TMZ is your top source. After all, unlike media outlets with scruples, TMZ is willing to lower a cameraman from the roof Mission Impossible style if it means getting the scoop twenty minutes earlier than everyone else. So it was official. The King of Pop was dead.

And then things got a bit nuts.

Hundred of (likely unemployed, nonvoting) people swarmed the hospital. All the radio stations started playing his songs. Some songs I had never even heard before. I think they just pushed a CD in and let albums play straight through. Twitter crashed. TMZ crashed. Perez Hilton crashed. The LA Times site crashed. CNN almost crashed. Nancy Grace remembered that more than one person had died in the past year. MTV was so shocked they interrupted their regularly scheduled marathon of reality TV to show actual music videos. Michael Jackson was the top story in England, Australia and New Zealand. The whole freakin’ web slowed. MSNBC reported that even Iranians had taken time out to discuss his death. Most everyone was talking about Michael Jackson.

This didn’t make some people happy.

Columinist Tim Rutten stated, “Newspaper editors and TV producers undercut the value of serious news media when they let website hits and social media volume dictate their coverage.” Yeah, don’t pay attention to tags and clouds. Other people talked about how we need real news.


Okay, who is this we these real news people are talking about? Maybe they, the minority, wanted real news. Though I do not understand how the death of a cultural icon we have watched for 40 years, who broke through color barriers, who had the best-selling record of all time, who singlehandedly kept half the lawyers, plastic surgeons and paparazzi in LA employed is not considered real news. To me that’s pretty freakin’ real. The way they went on about it, one would have thought seeing news other than Michael Jackson was more difficult than unclicking the entertainment tab. While the real news people were pouting, the majority of us were watching pre-freakish behavior Michael Jackson and pre-tax-dodging Wesley Snipes successfully end gang violence through singing in falsetto voices and pirouetting around a garage structure. (Because nothing says you’re really, really bad like a pas de bourrée-plie-jete combination.) Or we were trying to figure out the dance sequence from Remember the Time. Or we were watching Filipino prisoners reenact Thriller. I was copying the choreography from Beat It so I could avoid another grueling workout with The Firm, when it suddenly dawned on me…

Librarians are the real news people.

Okay, we’re not them…

They dress better than us.

Well, better dress than most you. I’m snazzy 95% of the time.

Dressing aside, too often librarians’ attitudes are that in order for libraries to remain relevant we should only have real items. We get upset with people for not wanting what we want them to want, for not reading the books we say they should read, not watching the movies we say they should watch, not listening to the music we say is appropriate. No one ever goes into depth about what exactly real items are, though we know what they are not---not Manga, or comic books, romances, horror, westerns, science fiction, mysteries, fantasies, pop culture items, or anything involving vampires, werewolves or shapeshifters. In other words, 99.44% of what people want to read is trash, and the only fiction we should carry should involve serious heartache, torment, suffering and longing, and should have passages such as, “Then he touched my inner arm, the barest skimming of a single digit, lightly tracing my blue vein down to the erratic pulsing at my wrist. I flushed, blood racing to pale cheeks, infusing them with color. It was the only touch we would ever share, yet to this day I still shiver in the remembrance of the heat which flashed in the inky darkness of his eyes. In all my years with my husband Henry I never felt anything like it, Henry lacking the full capacity to feel this deeply, and yet I was content with the knowledge that I was loved.”

Should you not want to throw yourself off a bridge after reading a book, it does not belong in our catalog.

We shouldn’t purchase DVDs or CDs---we should only purchase non-fiction books, for movies and non-classical music are an abomination. Yeah, because despite the fact that knowledge doubles every 18 months, we all know that non-fiction books last forever. At least that’s what it looks like when you look on our shelves, where you can find:

---Useless real estate info. (“No money down!” Really? In 2009?)
---New York books from 1999 (Because nothing big happened in 2001.)
---Résumé guides from 1986
---Internet books written in 1994
---Business books from 1987
---Books stating Pluto is a regular planet
---Cookbooks so old the recipes make you nauseous just reading them.

When we talk about it being okay to keep old books, we should have clarified we meant keeping the dribble college students are forced to read like War and Peace and Macbeth, not the space book describing how one day man may go to the moon. Why do we still have Y2K items on our shelves? Why do we have 2005 California Driver Handbooks on our shelves? I can pick up a free 2009 edition at the DMV, but we’ve kept the 2005 editions? What, is there a time machine in the backroom I don’t know about? I was embarrassed to go through Kids’ Place and discover brand spanking new Eyewitness books sitting next to editions from 1989. Forget the weeding list of shelf sitters that allow us to override them and keep items as we see fit, lists that overlooks out of date yet checked out items we rarely see on our shelves to know to toss them. We need a these-are-so-obsolete-you-don’t-have-a-choice-we-will-tie-you-to-a-chair-and-remove-them-by-force-if-necessary list. On June 25th there were 500 corrections to Michael Jackson’s Wikipedia page alone because everyone else in the world realizes updated information is a good thing, yet librarians can decide to keep outdated shelf sitters because someone in 3012 might want need it???

Don’t give me this it’s-a-real-book garbage when it comes to keeping items no one checks out. Yeah they’re real all right…real old. Stop freaking out because there might be empty spaces on the shelves. We need empty spaces. What do we do whenever we need more money for the library? We send out a bunch of polyester-blend wearing librarians to talk to news crews, hair hanging lanky around our unmade faces, and we talk in front of a gazillion books about how we need more money for…books. Then we wonder why no one gives us money. If we really want money we need a well dressed person to stand in front of empty shelving and tell reporters, “You know all those books you thought we had? They were beauty guides written in the 1970s.”

And while we librarians talk about how we should put real stuff on the shelves, meaning something insightful and intellectual, are we actually bothering to check out all this real stuff? Because I sure as heck don’t, and to be honest, I don’t know who does. The people I know are singing Crazy For You on break and discussing how SPL copies of Zack and Miri Make a Porno are missing the Make A Porno line on their covers. We’re checking out Dean Koontz, Linda Howard, Mary Higgins Clark, and our sole reason for reading East of Eden was because we were hoping Oprah would invite us on her show. The only trash we're not checking out are dating books and items so trashy we won't put them on hold because the circulation staff would find out. We fuss at the public for wanting us to buy more copies of Scary Movie, but when we want to check out Paul Blart or Get Smart or Transformers we claim, “That’s different!”

So do I think the future of libraries is in making wikis when the public already has them? Do I think it’s in gaming or telling them to read all the boring books I pretended to read in college? Nope. The future is in realizing it’s okay to want popular items because popular is typically a synonym for up to date. The future is realizing everything we buy is trash and should be trash simply because the world is changing so quickly nothing published is going to last, meaning in the long run, it doesn't matter if we purchase some DVDs. It’s in understanding that entertainment can coexist with intellectual pursuits.

The future is in librarians getting over ourselves.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Deceptive Images

I'm buying a house.

Or at least I'm trying to. But the market is just not making it easy. Do you want to know what the average (i.e., normal, slightly broke, yet hopeful) buyer goes through on a daily basis? This is what happens: Your agent sends you prospects. You find the perfect house. Then your agent calls and tells you there is someone in line ahead of you. You say, okay, that's fine, let's bid. That's when your agent breaks the news that the people you're up against have suitcases full of cash they'd stashed offshore for tax avoidance purposes and there is no way you're getting the house. So they advice you to start looking at your 2nd and 3rd (and 89th) choices.

Thus I've been spending my off days looking at ugly homes.

I'm officially a bottom feeder.

These real estate agents, they're more imaginative than a romance novelist. (Rich, handsome, ripped men with no annoying relatives marrying plump, plain women with no jobs, personalities or self esteem? Really?) Agents are just plain fanciful (desperate). Example: Listing # 90030952. The agent states, "Great opportunity for a kitchen designed and put in by you! The last owner liked the kitchen so much it went with them!" Wow! Who doesn't want to cook off of a hot plate for 6 months? But those are just words.

You know what they say about pictures.

One house showed pretty well online. Here are the pictures the agent posted:

Here are the pictures I took:

When I walked into the house I looked around, looked at my agent and asked, "Are you @#$%ing kidding me?"

This house, which is priced at $187,000, looks like they'd used it as a set for the Saw movies and The Last House on the Left.

My first inclination was to flee and take a shower. Not just any shower, but one of those Karen Silkwood I've-been-exposed-to-radiation kind of scrub downs in which yellow suit clad workers come in with brushes and lye soap. My agent assured me she'd seen worse, much worse, yet this did not make me actually feel any better.

It was freakin' horrible! You should see the pictures I didn't take. (There was no way I was going into that garage.) I started flipping out, my mind screaming, "I'm never going to get a house! I might as well spend my savings on cosmetic surgery and then marry a rich guy who already owns a mansion but is looking for a plastic trophy of a wife to complete his collection!"

After I disinfected and calmed down a bit, I decided to have a little fun with my pictures and fd's Flickr Toys.

And I bet you thought magazine cover generators were only for happy images.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Getting Back Into the Groove

27 Things is kinda like a diet.

You start out all gung ho, talking about how you’re only going to eat things that taste like tree bark (it’s good for you!) and drink 10 glasses of water minimum, this despite the fact that your bladder is the size of a thimble and you’re not supposed to have liquids after 7 pm. (At least not if you want to sleep.) The old exercise clothes get blamed for your lack of fitness---who wants to be seen at the gym in a number 23 Bulls jersey and sweatpants that have holes up and down the inseam? You're too old to pretend they're for ventilation, meaning new clothes are in order for the new you! You send the food pantry your stash of Top Ramen, Snickers bars, fudge brownies, and frozen lasagna and buy a bunch of heads of lettuce and low fat dressing to kick it all off because you’re getting into shape.

Fast forward to a month later.

You’re sitting on the couch eating cookie dough while watching Dancing with the Stars. Sure, you spent a ton of money on yoga pants, but no worries. They’re soooo comfy and stretchy, and since they’re long and black, you figure you can get away with wearing them to work with a tunic without anyone noticing. You’d like to salsa dance like you see them doing on TV, but since that would require actual movement of something other than you’re right thumb, you’re fine with just staring at the LCD screen. Though you didn’t actually accomplish your goals, you got off to the great start (at the mall) and that’s what counts, right?

I’ve been busy. Really busy. I knew I should get back to 27 things between hosting a job fair, putting on movie nights, doing Toddler Time, timesheets, and constantly disinfecting between touching icky children’s materials (and riding public transit, LOL), but honestly, I didn’t feel like it. And I didn’t feel bad about not feeling like it, because neither did you.

Feel like it, that is.

Don’t lie. (Not that you would---it requires too much thought.) I saw the links on the 27 Things blog. Some of you haven’t posted in 4 weeks. Instead of it making me feel bad, it made me feel better to know, not only was I not the laziest person here, I was better than some of you by default. (Gives me a warm fuzzy feeling right where my heart should be.) Though it’s a bit off (by like 6 days), it stated I last posted 1 week ago. I kinda did the assignments for the last two weeks, but since I haven’t digested them enough to come up with something really snarky to say, I’m going to wait until Sunday or Monday (or July) to tell you all about it. I just didn’t want to go 2 whole weeks without posting something.

Don’t want to look bad, right?

Thursday, April 30, 2009

No News Is Good News

I'm tired.

Madeline Kahn tired.

Maybe it's the weather. Maybe it's seeing the Facebook updates of others and realizing some of your friends have better lives than you and they can prove it with pictures. (Though some of those photos could be Photoshopped...) Whatever it is, I really didn't feel like going to work this morning. But then I realized if I stayed home I'd have to deal with my family, making going to work the obvious choice. (Is it just me, or do sweaty children smell just like wet dog?)

Since I had to be at work anyhow, I figured I might as And since I'm working and enrolled in this continuous learning environment, I figured I should have a close look at all of our assignments less the blog police rule me ineligible for the fabulous prizes that, should I win, I can sell online for a tidy profit. My mind was a bit fuzzy about which week I was on. Then I remembered barely stopping myself from writing a letter to Geek Sugar to let them know a NYC laptop carrying case is an accessory, not a gadget, and laughing at Gizmodo's reviews (World's Crappiest Projector (as reviewed by Gizmodo) On Sale Now at Woot), so that meant it was week four. Time for RSS feeds.

Here is what I learned from RSS feeds:

We're all going to die.

In foreclosed homes.

While wearing a paper mask like Michael Jackson wannabes.

Unlike traditional news sites, RSS feeds allow us to learn about the pending collapse of our country without those pesky Netflix ads distracting us from our feelings of hopelessness.

Personally, I prefer the distractions.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Flickr Fun

I’ve been thinking of marriage lately.

Maybe it has something to do with the Miss USA pageant and Miss California’s answer to Perez Hilton’s question on Prop 8. When I saw her answer on the news I know the same thing went through your head that went through mine:

“They still have beauty pageants?”

Seriously, I thought these things were canceled once women discovered they could become celebrities simply by eating live insects or group dating on TV. And don’t believe the paying-for-college hype. Having been in a pageant, they’re expensive once you throw in a gown and “minor” cosmetic enhancements, which is why you see women selling their eggs on Craig’s List for tuition.

But apparently, pageants still exist.

Thus upon looking at the news and wondering if they’d forgotten the true definition of news (Suri Cruise turned 3? Really?) I got to see the saga unfold. It goes like this: a tall, skinny, blonde with veneers and a slight fake tan who was asked about the stimulus package (Miss North Carolina) won the title over a tall, skinny blonde with veneers and a deeper fake tan asked about same-sex marriage (Miss California). When they showed the close up picture of the top five contestants I was reminded that, while cloning may be illegal, it apparently exists…

As does extreme dieting.

People wonder how a contestant could be asked about politics. To which I say, did you think the judges were going to ask, “Which do you like better, puppies or kittens?” There's a name for a pageant without political questions: Miss Hawaiian Tropic. In the pageant I entered we were asked about Clinton cabinet members, Bosnia, affirmative action, abortion, domestic violence, the Rwandan genocide, gay rights, you name it, they asked. My final question was to give my opinion on whether or not the Republican Party should spend $4 million to investigate the Democratic Party. (Since I knew I wasn’t going to win due to thigh issues, I gave my actual opinion, which is pretty funny looking back.) Right now Miss California states she would have won if she answered the question differently. To which I say, maybe. Because I wonder about people who have such faith in their accomplishments and greatness that they cannot fathom that anyone else could be better than them. Hey, even Tiger Woods lost the Masters. Does it even matter? If the top two contestants were placed in a police line up no one would be able to differentiate between them. Besides, what does Miss USA actually do? Cut ribbons at supermarkets? Smile for the camera and wave? So maybe, just maybe Miss California would have won had she answered differently, if by differently she means:

1. Not stumbling. (How many times did she say "in my" in 30 seconds?)
2. Moving her forehead instead of giving us a vacant, Botoxed stare.
3. Using existing terms instead of making one up on the spot. (Opposite marriage???)
4. Answering the question she was asked.

Lost in the hype is the fact that she didn’t actually answer the given question. But her non-answer got me thinking about “opposite marriage.” Such as, what is opposite marriage? Is it when spouses decide it’s best if they live on opposite sides of the country? Is it like the couples I know who don’t believe in divorce and thus they’ve divided the house War of the Roses style while trying to convince their kids it’s perfectly normal? Then I thought, "Maybe I should get married soon. I don't have anyone in mind as of yet, but I've had my eye on a few kitchen appliances. Perhaps I could pull a Carrie Bradshaw get-married-to-yourself thing and make a huge gift list. Didn't I put that on my to do list last year when I wanted to buy that BowFlex Treadclimber?" And, with all these thoughts of marriage, I was soon thinking about something that all of us, both opposite and same, can loathe together:

Ugly bridesmaid dresses.

Unfortunately, I am not able to state I’ve remain unscathed by horrible bridesmaid dresses, but the day I give birth to quadruplets is the day I will post unflattering pictures of myself online. However, there are plenty of people online willing to showcase how they love their friends so much they're willing to dress up like killer klowns from outer space.

Going into the Creative Commons portion of Flickr, I discovered this picture taken by Haundreis. His comment to the bridesmaids: "Someday, it will be your turn." My question: your turn to what? Corner the bride in a dark alley? In my world, friends don't dress friends in fuchsia leather bustiers, lime green shawls, and bizarre colored corsages. (Are those seed pearls I see hanging out of the flowers???)

This is just one of many hideous dresses one can find on Flickr, though there aren't nearly as many found in the Creative Commons portion. To find more, go to Flickr and type in "ugly bridesmaid dresses." Have fun (but don't get any ideas, got it?)

Thursday, April 16, 2009

7 1/2 Suggestions

Since I completely skipped over the first few assignments, I had to backtrack a bit and do some 7 1/2 OMG-not-another-power-point-presentation-say-it-ain't-so thing. I have speakers at my desk (the better to hear Robin Thicke with, my pretty) thus I also skipped having to use the yellow earphones we lend out to small children which are likely infected with something even Lysol won't kill. Here's what happened:

1st Slide: What is learning?
If you can read that slide most likely sometime, somewhere in your life, you've learned something.

Next: How do we learn?
They give us a bunch of choices, like TV, movies, books and from socializing. Well here are some of the things I've picked up from all that:

---Don't stay in room 1408.
---Don't have more than 4 kids. Ever.
---Don't have more than 2 kids unless you have a nanny.
---Don't have any kids if you like vacations and enjoy getting a full night's rest.
---Unattractive slacker men can easily land attractive women with futures.
---Rich people aren't happy because money doesn't buy happiness.
---Unless you were a hooker who is picked off the streets by Richard Gere who cleans you up, takes you to the opera, and forgets about all the non-trashy women he could marry.
---Poor people are happy.
---But only if your definition of poor includes home owners with live in help.
---Nice white ladies can do anything.
---People with bad hair and ugly clothes are outbreeding the rest of the population.
---Liquor before beer, all in the clear.
---"Oh, she won't get pregnant that way."

(Yes, because you can always trust what your social circle tells you, LOL)

Then there's some other slides, followed by things/items/suggestions/orders.

Official Rule #1: "Begin with the end in mind."
You mean like lose 30 pounds in 30 days?

#2: "Accept responsibility for your own learning."
Especially since we're too old to get our parents to co-sign for student loans.

#3: "View problems as challenges."
"This I no buy." Sometimes problems aren't challenges. Sometimes problems are just problems, and that's what makes them suck so much. Got it?

#4: "Have confidence in yourself as a competent, effective, learner, yada, yada, yada."
Cue the music. (To dream the impossible dream!)

#5: "Create your own learning toolbox."
Junk drawer. Check.

#6: "Use technology to your advantage."
Yesterday I used my ATM card to pay off my Visa. I think that counts.

#7: "Teach/mentor others."
I already do that. I've discovered trying to mentor a teen is the perfect way to get him to put down the Xbox controller, get off my couch and actually go home.

#7 1/2: "Play"
Yeah, like that's not going to end up in our evaluations.

Okay, let's be honest, just for a moment. (If you're not used to being honest, pretend you're hooked up to a polygraph machine.) Reading this made me feel like I was on one of the touchier Oprah episodes, only without the keys to a brand new car under my seat to make me feel better. Especially when it talked about making a contract with (as opposed to on) yourself. (Am I on the Clean Up Your Messy House Tour or something?)

Because I've done this before.

Haven't we all done this before?

We've all written contracts to ourselves on how we'll lose weight, save money, and stop making fun of our family members while they're in the room. And most of the time it doesn't work. Why? Because we like cookies, shiny new objects, and some of our family members are dopes we wouldn't be caught dead with if it weren't for some minor genetic quirk that makes us related; picking at them is a form of combating insanity.

So what IMO should we be doing with our time?

Eat That Frog!

A few weeks ago I picked up this book by Brian Tracy. Here's the Readers Digest version: figure out what's most important for you to do in life and focus only on those things in order of importance until they are done. I can write contracts until the earth is swallowed by the sun. My bathroom looked like a bulletin board, it had so many contracts/morning mantras/lies-I-tell-myself posted. But nothing matters if I don't JUST DO IT! Thus, while I appreciate someone saying I should write a contract with myself, I'm probably skipping it.

Think of it this way---I'm not avoiding doing an assignment.

I'm saving a tree.

This has nothing to do with the blog, but I just love this video.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Pimp My Blog

I spent 4 hours in Telis yesterday.

It could have been worst---last Monday it was 5. Way back then I had flannel boards to create, meaning Old MacDonald's farm animals decorated the cubicles and felt scraps covered the floor. I was too lazy to make Old MacDonald himself. I figure if any of the toddlers ask, I'll pretend he's one of those big agra-business conglomerate farm owners who never sets foot on his land. So I didn't have anything to do (since I actually did everything---which is a blog entry onto itself) when we started getting the calls.

The dreaded tax calls.

All day long, all day long, what do we get? People calling, pretending to care about filing their taxes. Yes, they're pretending. Had they cared that much, wouldn't they have called, say, a week ago? My family fussed me out for waiting until March to complete my return, and here some person is telling me some sob story about how an ingrown toenail prevented them from limping into Rancho Cordova Library last Thursday to get free help. So after the third caller told me how they just woke up out of a coma and evil zombie Kaiser employees refused to print them out an extension form I thought, "Will it be too obvious if I call in sick every Monday until I win the lottery?" Probably. Plus Geoff would kill me. Besides, I only call (e-mail) in sick if I can't talk---why be home sick for free when I can get paid for it? Then I thought, "Isn't there something else I could be doing?"

I didn't have a nail file (though I doubt Nina would appreciate workers giving themselves manicures, even on Mondays). Eddie, my hair dresser, doesn't work Mondays so I couldn't call and beg him for the love of God to squeeze me in sometime in the next two weeks. My real estate agent is likely sick of me ("What's with you and these short sales?"), I'm sick of huge sections of my family (another story), and even if this all weren't true, I wasn't about to start texting at work. (That's what lunch is for.) But then I remembered.

I had a blog.

My very own personal work blog.

And this time, I actually remembered the password to it and my e-mail account address, meaning I wouldn't have to abandon it.

So I went on the blog and realized it was freakin' ugly. Something had to be done about it, but I didn't know how. Then I wandered over to Library Learning because I saw someone had figure out blog beautifying. Lori mentioned something about creating a jpg in Paint, which made me happy...

Until I realized I couldn't find the paint program.

Ever since they did the upgrades I can't seem to find anything. So as I mentally screamed, "WTH is with this stupid paint program! Computers are plotting against me!" I realized I could do a few things in Word. Only I forgot about the upgrade. Thus the things I used to do in about 30 seconds weren't so easy. Which got me back to mentally screaming, "I hate you! I hate you stupid computer! I wish you would die! Die! Die!"

But as you can see, I finally figured it out.

Now if I can figure out these instructions on how to put music on your blog...

If you hear screaming, don't bother calling the police.

I just have to remember, each day gets better, and tomorrow, this will be a cinch!

Thursday, April 9, 2009

I have to what?

SPL is doing something called 27 Things.

I don't know much about it. I started to read the postings, but then I got distracted when I discovered there was a sale at Macy's. Sorry, but things fall by the wayside when clothes are marked down 75% AND they give you a $10 coupon AND they allow you to combine it with a 20% off savings pass.

So when I finally got around to reading what it was all it was about I had a WTH moment.

Someone somewhere thought it would be a good idea for SPL staff members to create blogs to show our progress. When I read this, I broke out of my why-aren't-I-on-my-own-private-beach-getting-a-massage-by-my-live-in-staff fog to say, "Huh?"

Creating a blog isn't a problem.

Reading a blog is a problem.

My first question: "Does this blog have to be on 27 things?" Because I prefer to make stuff up. Making stuff up gives a person a lot of freedom. But I was told it has to be on 27 Things.

Which brought on my next question:
Answer: Yes

Next question:
"Does it have to be on the 27 things provided to us?" Because I can think of 27 other things to blog about:

1. The book I'm writing
2. The state of the union
3. The state of my diet
4. Why houses should have more closet space
5. Why I will never layer my hair this short again
6. How short sales take a long time
7. Why I'm building a house one day (soon!) and getting a maid
8. The 4-day work week we should adopt
9. All the reasons Mondays suck
10. Removing the word cellulite from the dictionary
11. Why Kelvin should stop telling me, "You're a mess girl."
12. How Armando and Maria should really learn how to cook
13. Creating a Department of Fun
14. Home lipo suction kits
15. Why Neva should clone herself and take over story time for me
16. Why Gerald Butler should clone himself
17. Why that one guy on that commerical I saw should clone himself
18. How equipping Telis with massage chairs would improve morale
19. Why we should pipe in music like Borders
20. The impossibility of my family living without cable
21. Why teeth whitening should be covered by insurance
22. Getting a mascot for Kids' Place (I prefer a golden retriever)
23. Universal Health Care
24. Universal personal shoppers
25. Why spiders should not exist
26. Why kids should automatically come with (unattractive) nannies
27. Why I will one day move to France

Apparently these 27 things were not interesting enough because I was told it had to be on the 27 things they instructed me to write about.

Which brought me to my final question"
"Who the heck wants to read a bunch of blogs on 27 Things?"

This is going to be like watching Shrek. I love Shrek. Let me take that back---I loved Shrek. Then I was forced to watch it 30 times in a 6 day period (I won't mention how many times I had to watch the Karaoke in the Swamp scene). Suddenly Shrek wasn't the greatest film on earth.

So to anyone reading this, I created a blog. It took about 1 minute to add it to my other 2 blog accounts. I guess we'll see where it goes from here.