Wednesday, December 28, 2005

Total Books Read: 334

That's rounding up, as I've yet to finish the one I'm reading, but I have faith that I'll be done before Saturday night. So 334 books read this year. November was my slowest month (15), January my heaviest (38). But I can tell which months I felt really horrid during, just by looking back at my book log - some months are filled with re-reads of favorites, while others are more adventurous. Some have a ton of book reviews, others have a line or two here or there, but nothing too deep. It's an interesting view of my past year. (Although it's maybe only interesting to me?)

Anyways - Here's a few of my top books from this past year: (not always published in 2005, just that I read them this year)

Outlander- Diana Galbadon
I know I'm way behind here, but I finally got to read about Jaime & Claire this year --- and was not disappointed... I'm waiting for my library list to get to the next in the series

Tales from The Bed Jennifer & Valerie Estess
The autobiography of a very courageous woman. Very Moving.

Wicked Gregory Maguire
I was not lucky enough to see the musical in person, but have been listening to the soundtrack nonstop for at least a year. The book was a bit more complex than I expected, but it was still very good.

Sex & The Single Vampire Katie MacAlister
I'm not usually into vampires, but there was strong dialogue and smart characters, as well as a ton of humor, so I really enjoyed this.

Goddess of The Sea P.C. Cast My favorite find of the year... her Goddess series is wonderful!

Any book put out by Nora Roberts/J.D Robb is an auto-buy for me. This years excellent contributions include Origin in Death, Survivor in Death, & Blue Smoke

Some other very good (and very different) books:

Diana's Story Deric Longden
My Sister's Keeper Jodi Pocult
Encyclopedia of An Ordinary Life Amy Krouse
Harry Potter & the HBP JK Rowling
Angus, Thongs & Full-Frontal Snogging Louise Rennison
Hypocrite in A Poufy White Dress Susan Gilman
I Sleep At Red Lights Bruce Stockler
All in My Head Paula Kamen
Posterity: Letters of Great Americans to Their Children
Dorie McCullough Lawson
The Unthinkable Thoughts of Jacob Green Joshua Braff

So, now, if you didn't have a list going for 2006, you've got someplace to start!

If you've got some I should add to my list (ok, so, I don't exactly have one list, I have about 12 in different places, but still), please share...

If I don't see you till then - happy new year!

Sunday, December 18, 2005

If you're going to rant, you should be right.

A friend of my dad's was over at the house the other day, ranting. This particular friend only seems to rant: it is his preferred method of communication. After he finished ranting about the war on Christmas, the lack of pro-Bush stories in the media, and about a million other things, he happened to start in on celebrities who are vocal about their beliefs - be they political, moral, etc.

His position was that they should "Shut the F up." Mostly because that's just the way he feels about anybody who disagrees with him, but also because "Nobody really cares about what Susan Sarandon or Sean Penn thinks about anything, and I sure as hell don't want them to tell me what to think about it... Just because they have money doesn't make them qualified to tell people what to do."

I try to avoid this friend for many reasons, his negative outlook on life main among them, but happened to overhear this diatribe. It struck me as odd... although I've heard the argument before, I just don't understand it. To my way of thinking, just because they have money, it doesn't disqualify them from having opinions on the world they live in. Or from doing something about it. Certainly, whatever they choose to do (or not do) is more high profile because of their position in our society, but I don't see that that fact should hinder them from supporting whatever causes they see fit.

And if I believe in a cause, and support it, then why wouldn't I share my opinion with other people? I do that all the time now, in my own little world --- from buying Christmas presents from St. Jude's Hope Catalog to telling everybody I know who shops online about The IGive Shopping Window, which donates a percentage of whatever you buy online (at certain stores) to the cause you select, I tell the people in my life about the causes I care about and support. If I had a larger audience of people, would I stop giving my opinons, my support, my help? I don't think I could, or would want to.

So I think it's pretty ridiculous to suggest that celebrities would or should do any less just becaues they're famous. And I'm obviously not the only one... Check out who's Persons of the Year

Personally, I think if you can make a difference, you should. Period. And everyone can.

Tuesday, December 13, 2005

Did I have a million things to do today?

Yes I did.

Did I get them done?

No I didn't.

Actually, that's not fair - I did do a bunch of things; but the bunch leftover likes to haunt me.

By the way, the blogosphere? The ULTIMATE time eater for me... I promise myself I'm just going to check out this one blog... but then they have a link to another, or I remember that I haven't checked this one or that one lately.... and now it's two hours later, and here I still am. Wandering.

Monday, December 05, 2005

Is there anything better than Christmas?

I think not!

I haven't talked about it much here yet, but I'm not in the best of health. I'm not really up to the long explainatory post, either, but suffice to say that I spend a lot of time in bed. Depending on how I'm doing, that time can be occupied by books, music, t.v., writing, or the web. Recently, very little brain power and an insane amount of online shopping have left me capable of doing little else but veg in front of the t.v. or listen to the 497 christmas songs on my computer while staring blankly at the walls.

And yet, I'm still enjoying myself:

Because just the idea of Christmas makes me happy.

Because we own The Muppet Christmas Carol. (Yes, I watched it by myself... wanna make something of it?) Muppets Rock!

Because somehow the smell of the Christmas tree has overpowered the smell of all the medicines that live in my room (except the Vicks... but what does overpower Vicks?)

Because so many Christmas movies are funny - Elf, Scrooged, National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation (all now holiday requirements here), the Santa Clause movies, the first 2 Home Alones.

Because, even though it doesn't really show all the time, everybody in my house at least makes an effort right about now.

Because Robert Downey Jr. can really sing #12

Because, just when I thought I've seen everything a million times, new Christmas movies (worth watching) come out: The Polar Express,
The Happy Elf, Love Actually.

Because you can get any Christmas song you want (and a million you never heard before) online. Today's favorites: #17, Funky, Funky Christmas by the New Kids on The Block (only because I just remembered that I actually owned the original casette tape of this), Anything off this New To Me Album; Baby, It's Cold Outside (of which I now have 8 different versions, including a fabulous rendition by Zooey Deschanel from the Elf soundtrack), and Bette Midler's version of the Home Alone theme (did you know it had words???)

Because I actually LOVE to wrap presents & write Christmas cards... which, once I feel a bit better, I can do from bed.

Because ABC family is playing all the old Christmas cartoons... so there's always something on... which is where I'm heading right now.


Monday, November 28, 2005

Ok, I had planned to post an update on here... but Thanksgiving turned out to be a bit more stressful than anticipated (althought things are calming down now, Thank Whoever), so I decided I could use a laugh instead. Since Christmas is both my favorite and most stressful time of the year (at least since I graduated and don't have to take finals anymore), laughs are exactly what I'm in the mood for right now.

Here's a couple of things that struck my funny bone today:

How to Confuse Your Roommate
My favorites on this list?

13 - Spend all your money on Transformers. Play with them at night. If your roommate says anything, tell him/her with a straight face, "They're more than meets the eye."
This shouldn't be funny, and yet I can't stop chuckling

113 - When your roommate is typing, type on your keyboard in synchronization. I'm sorry, but I can totally see someone doing this. It's too funny

The fact that Dane Cook will be hosting SNL this week is certainly happy-making:

Dane Cook

The idea of marshmallows screaming, while severely traumatizing, is also very funny: Besides, I don't think it's that bad.

And a piece (or two) of wisdom to round out today's post:

Tuckle Rori seeks serenity (and does a much better job than I do) over Here

and with much thanks for introducing me to a new poem, I'll send you over to Half Changed World and some

Enjoy your last November Days! I hope to see you later in the week!

Tuesday, November 22, 2005

A little creepy, I thought, but....

Seriously, what's up with the "Good or bad" part?

You Are Pumpkin Pie

Even when people are full - they make room for you.
Good or bad, your smell is most likely to arouse a man.

Tuesday, November 15, 2005

A semi-guilty pleasure

A semi-guilty pleasure

Esquire magazine bills itself as “Man at his best.” While I don’t know about that, I certainly think it’s an example of a magazine at its best (except for the cologne inserts… they make me sick, but this is not limited to Esquire... why oh why do they have to put these in there??? Sorry, wrong post - Continue). Particularly their annual Genius Issue, which I have just finished reading. I learned some things, remembered others, and was entertained, informed and impressed, which is a lot to ask from one magazine (even if it doesn't include me in its target demographic - tsk.

Here’s some of what I got out of it:

New Information:
- I am not as smart as I would like to think I am (as evidenced by the “Hardest Quiz Ever” on p174).
- Graffiti can be amazing (Banksy) p198
- Fonts are fun (Fonts) p 206
- Sometimes there’s nothing better than a lime green RV (RTN) p 216
- Apparently, the toilet is not as good as it should be (Lotus-Leaf Toilet) p221
- Sometimes, the answers are simple (LifeStraw) p 235

Things I just needed to be reminded of:
- pharmaceutical companies are crappier than I thought … but someone’s trying to fix that (Non-profit Pharmaceutical company?) p222
- Wikipedia rocks (Go learn something random)
- So does A.J. Jacobs (He's a Know It All)
- Science is too hard for me (as if my sub-par grades in those classes hadn’t reinforced it enough, further proof -> I barely understood the very accessible articles on RNA, schizophrenia, engineering viruses, genetic codes or nuclear energy).
- I miss Sports Night. (Come BACK!!!)
- Felicity Huffman always makes me laugh (which is why I will sometimes flip over to Desperate Housewives on commercials).Dana Whitaker p116

- Contrary to what you see on the news, or even how you can feel most days, there really are people who care about the world and are trying to make it better (Check out the entire issue… there’s too much for a single link.)

Now go buy your own, so you can be a Genius too. 

Thursday, November 10, 2005

Songs to hate by

So there are these people in my family who, while they are technically related to me, I'd like to disown. They've behaved hideously in various ways & towards various people, for a number of years, and little hope for reconciliation. We don't talk to, or interact with any of them, if we can manage it. Personally, I've only broken my silence once in the past three years (when my aunt was trying to poison me by painting the back porch, and I asked her not to... she declined and I had to leave my house again, because she's a lunatic). But anyways, the point of sharing this tiny slice of my family insanity is that sadly, they still live upstairs from us.

The other day I was alone in my house, and the 17 year-old, at-least-as-crazy-and-dangerous-as-his-mother ex-cousin was upstairs by himself. (He's stopped going to school for whatever reason, so he's home everyday, playing video games loudly.) And it seemed like every six minutes or so, he came barreling down the stairs, (which happen to be right on the other side of my room) to check the front door for the mail. Our mailman doesn't seem to have any sort of regular delivery time -- sometimes it's as early as 10 a.m., others it's as late as 7 p.m. So there's no way to predict when it will come, and the only way to know if mail has come is to check the door. So, yes, if he wants to know if the mail came, he's got to come down and check.

Since my window looks out on the front door, I generally see or hear the mail come, but it isn't that big of a deal, because I'm not usually expecting anything either.

Well, crazy boy must've been expecting something very important (a truancy card addressed to his parents, perhaps)? Because he just kept racing down to check. Again and again and again. And he doesn't just walk down the stairs, like any normal person. No, he bombs down them... thump thump thump... And it sounds like he does that heel slide on the last few steps... you know, where you're too lazy to keep actually putting effort into walking, and you just flip flip down the last couple of steps? He does that, then bangs the door open and slams it closed again, even though all he really had to do was twitch aside the curtain and look out the window.

After about the 7th time he did this, I was starting to get really annoyed. It wasn't only the issue of the considerable noise, it was just his presence. Just knowing that they shouldn't be upstairs in the first place, his repeated interruptions kept reminding me of all the horrible things that they subject us all to, all of the tension and hatred that boils constantly around here. It was making me more frustrated and upset about this situation that just won't end.

But I know that getting upset over this crap isn't really helpful, and I really wanted not to let it bother me so much. Instead, I decided to have a bit of fun... It so happened that I was downloading songs onto my new laptop at the time, and I decided to find some songs wholly appropriate for our situation and then play them loudly each time loser boy came back.

So the next time he came roaring down the stairs it was to the tune of "You could drive a person crazy" sung by the lovely Bernadette Peters. After that came a little "Superfreak" chorus. Next mail check? "Less of You (is more)."

Not only did I build a fabulous music library on my computer (many of these songs/artists were new to me), I got out some of my pent up frustrations at this God-awful situation, and nobody really got hurt (ok... a few of the songs are a bit harsh... but he's clueless, so it isn't like he knew... and besides... harsh or not, they're still on point).


Here's what else I picked up:
"You don't own me"(from the First Wives Club)
"Why don't you do right" (made popular by Jessica Rabbit)
"What is this feeling (loathing)?" (From the musical Wicked)
"Wake me up before you go go" (only because I want to see it actually happen)
"Tomorrow belongs to me" (In other words, you're not in it.)
"Time to say good-bye" (Yup... take the hint)
"These boots are made for walking" (So figure out how they work, and give 'em a try)
"Something stupid" (Yeah... it's you.)
"So long, farewell" (Could I be any clearer?)
"Schadenfraude" (From Avenue Q: has a very clear definition of shadenfraude itself, and illustrates many of the reasons I don't feel too guilty about this list)
"Punch in the nose"
"No one mourns the wicked"
(Can you guess who I'm talking about here?)
"Last chance to lose your keys" (Isn't this just the greatest song name ever?)
"Time to change"
"I'll be glad when you're dead you rascal you
" (Well, dead is certainly unnecessary... just... not HERE would suffice).
"I wonder what became of you" (Because I remember when you used to have morals, and, gee, I don't know... care about the people you claimed to love)
"Hit the road jack
"Leave (get out)
"Movin on
"Leave right now
"Everything you know is wrong"
(and let me underline the word everything)
"One way ticket"
"Na na na na good-bye"
"Get lost"
"The theme to the good, the bad, & the ugly
" (Guess which is which)


Wow, how's that for venting? And airing family problems in public? This post is the reason I haven't told my family that I have a blog. Not that anybody down here would do anything but chuckle about my rather odd manner of protesting, but still.

The list is still open for updating, so if you think of anything that should have been included, I'd love to hear about it. Because one of them will come down those stairs at least once everyday, and, even if the computer isn't on, I can still get a smile out of which song my mind chooses to replay at that moment.

Friday, November 04, 2005

A Movie and A Book... Take a Look

Based on the recommendations of some web-friends, I've just read and finished Outlander by Diana Gabaldron. It was excellent! I was so glad to have few distractions yesterday (most of my family was off on their own) because I didn't want to have to throw anything at them if they tried to interrupt my reading.

The book is kind of hard to catagorize ---> But I can tell you that it had a bit of everything I usually look for in a good book: a compelling story, witty dialogue, and strong conflicts (wow, were there some strong conflicts!)

She managed to weave quite a bit of historical fact into her story as well. It's probably not for everybody - the length of the book (over 500 pages, I pretty sure... I already sent it back to the library, so I can't be sure) somehow puts some people off, but it was worth it.

And, since it was the first in a series, I'm doubly excited b/c the next books are already out ... now I only have to wait a bit for my library to process the requests.


I also got to watch Batman Begins recently.

First, let me just explain my love for Christian Bale: well, I can't explain it. But it started with Newsies - a musical (2 points) about a significant social issue (another point there) with cute boys (which, at the age of 13, translated into about 100 extra bonus points). If you haven't seen Newsies, and any of these things add points to your list, go out and rent it right now. The songs are very catchy, and it may be very "Disney," but that doesn't really work against it in my book. I loved Swing Kids as well, although not as much. He played Laurie to a tee in the 90's remake of Little Women (which is one of my all time favorite books). I squirmed through American Psycho, which isn't really my kind of movie, generally. And that one with the dragons was pretty good too. (Reign of Fire - I also love IMDB, but that's a post for another day). And then there's the lisp... why does that work for him instead of against? I don't know, but it does.

So the fact that he was the lead in the new Batman didn't escape my notice. Plus, I've liked all the other Batman movies - some more than others, but I'm certainly not a comic book purist or movie snob. Although it seems that everyone else paid a lot more attention to George Clooney's nipples in the last version of Batman than I did, I didn't think it was horrible. But this one was much better - it had a better story, it flowed better, it was darker and more intersting. And Michael Caine's Alfred was spectacular.

I didn't really understand how it worked (continuity-wise) with the backstory we'd seen in the first Batman movie (Michael Keaton "I'm Batman/Jack Nicholson as the Joker), but that's not a huge deal. I thought it was very good: I'm glad to see, in Christian Bales IMDB page, a listing for untitled Batman Begins Sequel.

So, if you're looking for some low key things to do this weekend, there's a couple of suggestions.I'll be trying to finish up my brother's birthday present, reading a couple of new books, and trying to help my sister figure out the Weight Watcher's Points system.

Wednesday, October 26, 2005

Secret Addiction #1


Am I the only one who could just hit reload all day on this site? The pictures are so varied... and most of them are amazing. There's weird pictures, cute pictures, vibrant pictures... just everything you can think of. I've been on-line for about two hours today - checking e-mail and blogs and searching for youngest sister's birthday present, but Flickr is shrunk down there in the middle of all my open pages and I just keep clicking. Here are a few of the most interesting so far:


Beautiful blue eyes

A different view of Fall

Note to self: Buy black and white film

I just love the odd reflections you can capture. And bonus points for incorporating a great quote.

Just a reminder, for me. And beautiful too.

So that's where I've been this morning - how bout all of you? Or a favorite flickr picture (have your own set: I'd love to see them.) you want to share? Let me know.

Enjoy your day everybody.

Sunday, October 23, 2005

In case you care

Took a couple of quizzes:

Your 80s Heartthrob Is

Jason Bateman

and yes... they're right...He's all cute and snuggly in that picture!
You Passed 8th Grade Math

Congratulations, you got 10/10 correct!

What's sad is that I wasn't sure I had passed it until the results came up. Phew... (BTW, I also passed the US citizenship test there too.)


You Are Fall Flowers

Beautiful yet often forgotten.

Since I've been feeling a bit left out lately, this seemed to fit.
Your World View

You are a fairly broadminded romantic and reasonably content.
You value kindness and try to live by your ideals.
You have strong need for security, which may be either emotional or material.

You respect truth and are flexible.
You like people, and they can readily make friends with you.
You are not very adventurous, but this does not bother you.

Alrighty. To get this result I had to answer a hypothetical question (about an Indecent Proposal - ish dilemna) and decide who was the most moral... I wonder what the people who thought the guy who blackmailed the girl was the most moral got as an answer?

So there's a couple of things you didn't know about me, in case you care.

Thursday, October 20, 2005

Take your pick

I’ve been thinking a lot about death, recently.

I know this is not what you want to read, because now you are thinking about death too, and are cursing me for depressing you as you flit happily through the blogosphere: I apologize. This isn’t really meant to be a depressing post, though, or at least I don’t think it’s too depressing.

It’s really more about this – someone got in touch with my family recently, looking to reconnect with a friend, not knowing that friend (my father) has been dead for six years. He was quite shaken at the news, and it makes me remember how shaken we all were – the way it happened, how quickly it changed so many things, the shock of it just being the end.

And now, six years later, this person - and through him other friends of my father – still fresh in his grief, took the time to share stories and pictures of his friend with us. To tell us about the times when our father wasn’t only our father, but also his friend. To tell us the stories my father never got around to telling us, to share the anecdotes that we never shared because we were too young or he was too screwed up or we weren’t as close as we could have been. And it makes me think better of my father - a man who I loved and hated and was too often disappointed in or a disappointment to – it makes me think more of him, helps me to remember the best of him, when I know he once had friends as good as this.

Continue on with your flitting…hope I haven’t brought you down.

Just in case....go
HERE and go drool (or go blind) looking at the adorable baby.

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

The house is quiet, empty.

Do you know how rarely that happens? All the things on my to-do list today are sitting there waiting for me to come back to them, and I’m sitting here listening to the clock tick. It’s stopped raining, which had been my excuse for not running errands, so I suppose I have to do those too. But I really wish I had a good book to snuggle up with. And some hot chocolate… even though the fact that it’s getting cold enough for hot chocolate semi-frightens me. (All the sudden it’s mid-October. I have no idea how that happened.) But I’ll deal with the cold weather -“clean of radiator” is at the top of my to-do, btw – if it means I’ll get hot chocolate…. with fluff. Yum.

But I have accomplished some of the things I set out to do today… I’m researching good quality/reasonable cost digital cameras, and have found a few bargains online. I bought a stocking stuffer for my family’s gift exchange (although I am so pleased with it, it’ll be hard to hold on to till then). I solved a puzzle that only 2% of the population can solve ;) (which totally wasn’t on my list, but wasted some time during lunch and made me feel brilliant). Click Here if
you want to try it out - it takes a while, but if you get it, you'll feel brilliant too.

And now I’ve posted my blog - so I definitely got a start on that list.

So off I go… back to the quiet house.

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

So, more wandering today. Thought I'd give you a chance to see some of what I've found - you know, in case you're too 'busy' for wandering. Here it is in one convenient location! Aren't you lucky? (Now if I could figure out why blogger won't let me press enter without publishing, this would be easier, but copy and paste, my friends, copy and paste.)

In the "Kids can loose ANYTHING category ... Big Tooth

In the "I thought the squirrels were having fun ripping apart MY trash" category... High Times

In the"well, gee.... Thanks?" category.... Don't you feel left out?

And Finally... the first thing to make me laugh out loud today ..... Funny Blog

Tuesday, October 04, 2005


NTE: so what kind of hw you doin?

littlestsis: i was doing math - precal

NTE: i don't believe in that word: Math ... i'm anti-math: i think it's just a "theory" like ... evolution. If creationism is an alternative theory to evolution, then there should be alternative theories to math... like "guesstimating"

littlestsis: hahaha i like that idea

Monday, October 03, 2005

Random things I'm working on today:
  • Getting some shopping started - I know it's early to mention the "C' word, but since I do most of my shopping online, if I don't start figuring out what I'm looking for, I'll be still be looking come Dec. 24th (and paying extra for postage). My family's trying something different this year - dedicated gift giving: Each person has one other person as their recipient. There's a minimum (so that those of us who are cheapskates can't ruin someone's day completely), and everyone's supposed to provide some ideas of what they're looking for, so no one winds up horribly disappointed. Everybody still has to do the nieces and nephews, grandparents, etc., but there are hopes that this will improve everyone's holiday spirit. It could be a huge success or a horrible tragedy, only time will tell. So, armed with my person, I'm on the lookout for all things Hummel, and in search of inspiration.
  • Still searching for a new doctor. This is a double "ugh" sort of task. It requires cold-calling, which I hate; research, which I excel at, but don't really want to do; and a lot of luck, which I seem to be short of at the moment. It's tricky b/c I have a whole team of doctors, but my primary care physician just isn't going to be available anymore, so I have to find a replacement. And I want to do it in a way that doesn't require replacing the rest of the team, which means finding someone who can play well with the others. And who has knowledge of my conditions and treatment options. And who accepts my insurance. And who's accepting new patients. And who's close enough that I can get to in a reasonable amount of time. So ... double ugh.
  • Writing a couple of letters: a congrats to a friend who's newly-engaged; a thanks to a friend who did something extra thoughtful, a note to say hey to a couple of friends who I've been lax in checking in on.
  • As always, smack in the middle of 5-7 craft projects: the scrapbooks for my siblings birthdays, the cross-stitch-that-will-never-be-done, & a wedding cross-stitch that I have to frame and mail (soon, considering the wedding was in May... You have a year, right?)

So, that's what I'm up to today... off I go.

Thursday, September 29, 2005

Actually accomplishing things today

Like reading: I know I'm totally behind on the whole Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants phenomena, but I'm totally on board now. Yes, it is technically, a young-adult novel, but it was fabulous just the same. (I don’t see much point in being snobby about what you’re reading anyways… who cares who it was meant for, if it was obviously meant for you?)
And it was excellent – well written and thoughtful, none of that “oh, it’s for teenagers, so we have to hit them over the head with lessons and meaning RIGHT NOW” crap that makes people leery of reading young adult fiction. Instead, it was smart and funny, interesting, perceptive and quirky. The story is about a group of teenage girls, all interesting and individual characters on their own, who have a strong and firm friendship. The Pants wind up being a symbol of their bond, as they spend their first summer apart.
I have no longing for my own teenage years, but the friends I had then are a different story. There’s something about that bond that Brashares manages to portray so realistically that you find yourself reaching for the phone or heading to, in the hopes of tracking your own friends-from-then down.

And now I’m wondering about the movie: Did it do the book justice? (Do they ever?) I’ll be heading over to IMDB, but I think it got pretty good reviews.

This has me thinking about movie versions of books, good and bad.
Here’s what I’ve come up with so far:

Books I had hard time reading, but enjoyed the movies:
The Lord of the Rings Trilogy
Divine Secrets of the Ya Ya Sisterhood

Both movie/book were excellent:
To Kill a Mockingbird
The Green Mile
The Shawshank Redemption
The Harry Potter
Little Women (both the classic and the newer versions)
The Stand (a T.V. movie, but still)

Movies that had only the barest resemblance to the books that birthed them:

Jurassic Park (What was going on there? As far as I could tell, the only thing the same was that they both had dinosaurs.)

Stephen King’s Lawnmower Man (Which had some freaky special effects, but a totally different story line than the book)
Shrek (Although I liked the movie version a lot, it wasn’t really based on the children’s books by William Steig, as far as I could tell.)

And a few more I’m kind of afraid of seeing, in case they don’t live up to some great books:

The Polar Express
Pride & Prejudice
(a new version comes out this season)

And one I’m hoping will be better than the book:
The Da Vinci Code (which I was not that impressed with, but everybody seems to like it) I know I'll come up with some more, but until then, how about you guys: Got some best, worst, afraid-to-sees? Let me know

Wednesday, September 28, 2005

There’s a million things I could/should be doing right now: Organizing my mess. Making all the phone calls I’ve been putting off for a week. Cleaning the files off the old computer. Writing, or polishing something I’ve already written. Figuring out when I can see my friend who I’ve been trying to get together with for 3 months. Working on one of the 5 craft projects I’m right in the middle of. Labeling or sorting files. Building lesson plans for if I ever go back to work. Even making lunch.

Instead, I’m sitting here, babbling. It’s mostly because I know school will be out soon and Nephew will be bustling in, full of energy and chit-chat. Then I’d have to put whatever I was doing away anyways, and try to find the energy to make it through the rest of our day. But even that feels like an excuse, because wandering around reading blogs and my favorite websites, browsing on E-bay and skipping though my music player are just about all I have the energy for today. So that’s what I’m doing, doesn't it sound wicked exciting?

Anybody else wasting their day? If so, I'd love to hear about it, help ease my own guilt a bit. :)

Saturday, September 24, 2005

If this doesn't work

Insert a picture of me banging my head against the wall here.

For whatever reason the last entry didn't post. So I'm trying again.

Well, it works if I go straight to the address, but the blog that shows up when I check it from here (the posting site), not so much. Oh well... so long as it's really there, I suppose it's no big deal.

Saturday is WERS day

My first real post for this blog = pressure. I'll start with the fact that I'm playing with the templates here on blogger, so even if it looks completely different anytime you click on it, I'm pretty sure it'll still be mine. :) So far, I don't like the way that the left information tab winds up at the bottom of the page... but my html knowledge is certainly not up to figuring it out, so I'll keep playing until something I like better comes along.

So listen, I don't know much about music... I will confess my ignorance of all things rap, hip-hop and alternative; I am sure to change the subject if you ask about who won a recent Grammy award or whose video is the best on MTV right now (especially since every time I turn on that channel, it's either Road Rules or My Super Sweet 16 - do they even SHOW videos anymore?); and I bet I couldn't recognize more than 10 of the "Top 40." (I checked - I didn't know most of the songs, but there were actually some names I knew - all of them older: Paul McCartney, the Rolling Stones, etc.)

So, yeah, I'm not up on today's popular music, but I know what I like. I'm eclectic in all things, perhaps most of all in my musical tastes. The IPOD shuffle is right up my alley: Since I've gotten my laptop, I've almost totally given up listening to the radio, instead shuffling my entire musical collection through Windows Media Player. I play them by genre (musicals, theme songs, ballads, oldies, big band, live, etc), by decades (I have a little bit from each, I think), or by length of song (which tends to produce the best variety, BTW). I'll listen to just about anything, with just one basic, guiding rule - NTE's Rule of good music - If there are words, I have to be able to understand them. I just can't enjoy a song if I can't figure out what is being said. There's more than one rap song that I've read the lyrics to and been impressed, only then I'd hear the actual song and not been able to understand any of it. If it's a song, I'm supposed to be able to figure it out while listening to it...Or else, why am I listening to it?

There's really only one thing I listen to the radio for anymore, and that is WERS.

WERS is the student run radio station of Emerson College. The actual station is located on their Boston campus, so my radio gets it clearly (88.9 FM if you're in the New England area) but, happily, you can listen to the broadcasts on-line:

Here's the link
(I've also heard the hosts mention that it's available through ITunes, but I don't use that program, so I didn't really pay attention to how to do it.)

They play a unique jumble of musical styles (everything from jazz to folk, from sports programs to a church service), but, for me, WERS is all about Saturdays: On Saturdays WERS has three excellent shows back-to-back, starting at 10:00 in the morning.

First they play "the best of Broadway and beyond" during their Standing Room Only program.

The hosts for all of these shows vary, as the school year brings new students, so the formats may change from time to time, but the quality of the music they play doesn't.
Musical theatre at its best, SRO plays current Broadway hits, standards by classic artists and everything in between. Like all WERS programs, Standing Room Only has live performances in the studio by both locally and nationally known performers (this morning's live performances, for example, were from a local benefit for rebuilding after Katrina and an interview with Alice Ripley) and plays listener requests - often these make up the majority of the playlist. They also regularly give away tickets to local productions and give a calendar of theatre events going on around Boston.

After Standing Room Only, starting at 2:00 EST, there's All A Cappella. And, obviously, they play a capella music - which, in case you didn't know, is just music without instruments: it's all the human voice. I am a late-comer to this particular bandwagon, but I've jumped on full-force, because the kind of songs I've heard on this program are amazing. The program is populated by unique and awesome versions of many well-known songs, new and old, sung by professional and collegiate a cappella groups from around the country.

To round out my day of listening pleasure, there's the Playground from 5-8 pm I actually started listening to this station because of the Playground - hunting though the radio dial one day, I stopped when I heard a Schoolhouse Rock song. School House Rock? On the radio?! I kept the tuner there and they played one childhood memory after another.

Technically, the Playground plays 'children's music,' so there's some Pokemon or Wiggles that you may have to suffer through (ugh), but aside from that, they play everything from Disney standards to cartoon theme songs, from the Muppets to Weird Al's parodies. If you have kids and happen to be driving for the three hours that this show is playing, you will want to send them gifts. If you're a grown-up in a bad mood, listening to the Gummi Bears theme song or Ozzie Osbourne and Miss Piggy sing Born to Be Wild can improve your whole day.

I've been a regular listener to the station for about 9 years now, and have always been impressed with the shows - enough to become an WERS member during their twice yearly pledge drives. This is the only minor drawback for me - it's a "listener supported" station, which means there's no commercials, but they do come on for two weeks out of the year to ask for money... It's not a huge deal, but those pledge days can get annoying.

If this sounds like something you'd enjoy, please check it out and let me know what you think.

Phew! First "real" post = done.

Friday, September 23, 2005

This was the second day's posts/comments

Wednesday, September 21, 2005

An Update
First, I'd like to apologize to Amy for all the confusion... I have no idea what happened (and am pretty sure that it wasn't anything I actually did), but I still feel bad for the problem. Your blog certainly seems well-liked, and your readers are loyal. I hope they'll be able to read what you have to say again soon (and can promise to check it out myself, too).I've written two e-mails to blogger (and hope that Kristine isn't right about the fact that they may never get back to me). I also searched their questions and came up with this:Blogger accounts and Blog*Spot addresses do not expire. Therefore, we can't take away somebody's blog address to give to you. Occasionally people come back to their blogs after long absences, and we want them to be able to find their blog as they left it. If you find some contact information on the blog, you are welcome to deal with the owner directly, to see if they are willing to delete the blog so you can use the address. However, we do not give out contact information for the owner of a blog.So, if this was Amy's address first, I have no idea how I got it.And lastly, I just wanted to say thank you to those who welcomed me - especially given these odd circumstances. Hopefully, it'll all be cleared up soon. Thanks for your patience, as I'm probably (depending on how long this takes) not going to post on other topics in case I have to start all over again.

Amy said... Hey there,You are a good sport! Don't feel bad about anything. Totally not your fault. Blogger hasn't gotten back to me yet, so I am still stuck on how to figure this one out. My blog was over 150,000 words and 21 months of writing, so I really hope I get it back. I am off to see if there are any clues on B's website.And WELCOME to the blogosphere! 12:33 PM

mrt said... This is funny, in a very queer way.You start to blog... you get the readers... you get the spam.IAG - You have pulled the perfect WTF Tuesday without even knowing it.Amy - blove to you. I hope you can get your posts back. 1:05 PM

Anonymous said... you are a sweetheart - good luck! 3:20 PM

SQ said... Yah, just so you know New "Anybody's Guess" you are linked on my page so I'll keep popping in and reading you :-)Amy I hope they get to the bottom of this fast....that's awful to lose all those entries and I miss reading you! 8:27 PM

lb said... As Amy said, welcome to the blogosphere. So sorry your first experience has been less than stellar. I do hope Amy gets all her archives back and it gets worked out.On a good note, you already have more traffic than the average first week. Your handling it very well, and Amy is a very graceful, loving person....I'm glad if something like this happened it didnt happen with someone who is vengeful or mean spirited. 12:29 AM

Amy said... Hi IAG.I have talked to some other bloggers and the general consensus is for you to try and delete this blog, then see if mine comes back. Before you do though, save your posts. I guess you could try creating a new one and calling it ?If you are willing to try this, let me know. Thanks! Amy 10:04 AM

JS said... I wonder if the whole blogger community harrassed Blogger, if they'd respond?Maybe we should all send them a help request about Amy's blog and see what happens?~Jason 1:53 PM

I said... Thanks everybody for your comments. I still haven't heard back from blogger, but, Amy I'm certainly willing to try deleting this blog in the hopes that yours comes back. I will look up how to do that and hopefully have it done tomorrow. Thanks again to all of you - it's been a strange and interesting introduction to the blogosphere, and I appreciate how kind you all have been, especially given this confusing situation. I'll definitely be back to check if Amy's blog has re-appeared, and if I decide to give this all another try, I'll let you know where I am. So, we shall see... Good Luck Amy!

I was also lucky enought to get some spam comments about viagra (if only you could see me rolling my eyes). But weren't they all so gracious? So that's why I'll try again.

See what I get?

I write an e-mail that the whole thing disappeared, and it comes back. It's like making a doctor's appointment: you think you're dying when you make the call, but by the time you get there, the rash has gone away, the swelling has faded, your throat no longer croaks. Oh well.

I figured I'd show you the posts from over there, just so you can see my stellar introduction to the blogosphere.

Here we go:

Tuesday, September 20, 2005 (Day #1)

It really is anybody's guess
Whether or not I'll be able to figure out what I'm doing here.Welcome to my blog - After way too much consideration (if you hang around long enough, you'll see that I consider everything way too much), I've decided to join the blogosphere. I've got tons of things to talk about, and I'd love to be able to ramble on with some of you, see what you all have got to say. I gathered during my own wanderings that a first post is usually an introduction to the blogger, but I'd rather you guessed. I'm sure that my posts will be chock full of information about me, and I think I'm going to leave the introductions for a while, see if we can't get to know each other by what we're saying here. This might not work, but since it's my blog, I can change it whenever I want, right?Instead, I'll give you some sort of background on the blog's title: It's Anybody's Guess = IAG.
See, I'm a bit late to the party here: all the witty names I could think of were taken, there's only so many ways to twist the word blog (which sounds weird to begin with), and basically, I have no idea what I'm doing here.
So IAG -
whether or not I'll enjoy this enough to work at it.
whether or not I'll be able to figure out the ins and outs of blogging and not shoot myself first. (Naively, I thought this would be easy, but am finding quite differently: case in point, the spell checker tells me there's no such words as blog, blogging, or anybody's... hmm perhaps I have chosen unwisely?)
if anybody will read - or enjoy - what I have to say
if I'll have anything to say
what I'll decide to talk about on any given day
if I'll just be rambling to myself some more
So, that's my introductory post. We'll have to see how it goes from here. Cross your fingers.

C said... Amy, I'm confused. What happened to your old site? 2:44 PM

Amy said... Hi Christy,This is not my blog! I am not sure what happened, but it looks like my blog address got hijacked. To the person who has this blog, no offense! 3:12 PM

I said... Well, see... I told you I was new to this. I didn't think they would have let me use the name if someone already had it. See what I know? Hope I haven't stepped on any toes. 3:46 PM
m said... Amy, and whoever the new person is: you can both write to Blogger to see what happened.Amy, you didn't let your blog lapse, did you? I mean, you were pretty regular about writing. It hadn't been months since your last post. 4:06 PM

SQ said... How weird.I have Amy's link on my Blog ~ have had it for months ~ and when I clicked it, I was brought to this blog.No offense to this person either, but Amy do you have another blog address so I can find YOU again? 4:08 PM

lb said... OMG, I clicked on my 'amy' link on my site and got here. I thought...what happened? This is not Amy. Where is Amy? Dosent look like Amy....nope. Amy has been blogging for a offense to who is the new one to would think that 2 couldnt use the same 1.
5:48 PM

Anonymous said... Amy where are you?? I haven't been able to click on your link for a week and then today I was brought to this blog you really should write to them to find out, and the person who has this blog now you should write too because the name was taken and they did let you use it strange and sad please get it fixed up we all miss your writing!! 7:02 PM

AE said... welcome to the blog world! 5:45 AM

JS said... I miss your blog Aim.I was able to locate a cache of all your blogs as far back as the beginning of August using I'll keep trying to find caches of your blog... I hoped you backed up! 9:17 AM

K said... Holy mother of christ this freaks me out.I have months and months and months of writing on blog. I would freak if I lost everything!Amy...(and sorry to the new anyone'sguess) but you really need to get to the bottom of this.... OR...You just take this as a sign to start fresh.It's up to you. Blogger probably is way backed up and will never get back to you about what happened. 10:30 AM

L said... OMG..Amy and new Anybody's guess..this is interesting!Can you both Blog? Amy keep us posted on where you are going and welcome to Blogworld other Blogger! 5:27 PM

mm said... Gosh, I wondered what happened....Welcome to you, new one, and Amy, we miss you. Freaky! 9:57 PM

JS said... As an update, I was able to find all of Amy's blogs I think.If this happens to anyone else, come to me. ;)~

Let's get it RIGHT this time

O.K. So this is my second try at blogging... my first having been, not quite as successful as I might have liked.

To provide a bit of background, my e-mails to blogger help:

I signed up for a blogger account yesterday, and am totally new to blogging. I assumed that if there was a current account with the name I had chosen, I wouldn't have been able to use it. I guess this isn't true, as I have 9 comments this morning about "hijacking" someone else's name. Could you please help? Obviously, if this is someone else's name (Amy it seems), there has been an error. I just don't have any idea how to correct it. I'd gladly start over with a new name, but I'd still like some explaination as to what happened and HOW, b/c I honestly don't know if I'll be comfortable blogging here if my blog might just disappear or get "hijacked." I'd appreciate any help you can provide, thanks.


I am not having much luck with your service. First, I'm given a blog name that apparently belongs to someone else. Then, I don't hear a reply to my questions about that problem, and then my entire blog disappears. I certainly hope this is not indicitive of your services, as I am seriously considering moving to another provider. However, I would still very much like to hear to you regarding these issues, so I know how to prevent/correct them in the future. I am giving it one more shot one another blog here (Never that Easy) and DESPERATELY would like it not to have similar problems. Thanks again for your help.

That's right... my entire blog disappeared. Thankfully, I had only two posts, but poor Amy (who had the blog first) lost a lot of her work. Months of work. And now, It's Anybody's (the name of the original blog, btw) what happened to either one of them. GOOD LUCK AMY!

But I'm willing to try again... mostly because of all the positive comments left during the course of that other nonsense. People were really welcoming, despite the fact that I had apparently 'hijacked' their friend's blog. So, now with (cross fingers here) my OWN blog, maybe people will be just as nice. Let's see.