29 May 2008

Stuck in the middle

Are you right-brained or left-brained?

I am, um, neither:

Right Brain/ Left Brain Quiz
The higher of these two numbers below indicates which side of your brain has dominance in your life. Realising your right brain/left brain tendancy will help you interact with and to understand others.
Left Brain Dominance: 8(8)
Right Brain Dominance: 7(7)
Right Brain/ Left Brain Quiz

Confession time: I love Jelly Bellies. I am quite the connoisseur - remember the time I spent $14.54 on them at the airport because I was so excited that they were only $3.49 a pound? And then I found out they were $3.49 A QUARTER pound? I am just lucky that I haven't found a place around here that sells them by the single flavor, because I am so fussy that I refuse to buy the pre-mixed kind. Here are my preferences:

Jelly Belly Flavors Yes:
French Vanilla
Chocolate Pudding
Cream Soda
Cinnamon/Super Hot Cinnamon
Strawberry Daquiri
Pina Colada
Cotton Candy
The elusive raspberry
Caffe Latte
Toasted Marshmallow
Strawberry Jam
Strawberry Cheesecake

Jelly Belly Flavors Hell No:
Buttered Popcorn (THE most odious)
Bubble Gum
Peanut Butter
Green Apple
Root Beer
Dr. Pepper
Caramel Corn
Tutti Fruitti

Jelly Belly Flavors I Won't Spit out but which bring me little joy:
Juicy Pear
Red Cherry
Orange Sherbet
Island Punch

Please adjust your gift mixes accordingly.

28 May 2008

Ah, dang it all.

Karen over at Karen Sugarpants gave me this lovely award:

Which not only means that she likes me, she really likes me - but since I was first on her list, that she likes me best! Neener neener. Maturity is not my strong suit.

That's the good news. The bad news is that I have to pick 10 people AND ONLY 10 PEOPLE that I love to give the award to. This is causing me stress, since, like Garrison Keillor, I believe that all the children are above average.

But I forge ahead. If you aren't on here, I don't love you any less. I just love you more forgetfully.

The rules are as usual: if you are awarded, you have to pick 10 people to award, or Satan comes and steals your soul. No big. You're supposed to link to them and email them and layder layder layder I can't hear you too much work holy cats already.

1. Let's knock off two birds with one unlinkable stone, my 2 sisters who do not have blogs - Paula and Elvie. Ok, Paula has a blog but it hasn't been updated since there was snow on the ground, and since we live where there is no snow, it has been a LONG time, I'm just sayin'. Anyway, I'm just lucky that 2 of my readers are 2 of my favorite people who also happen to be my sisters. I am blessed that way.

3. Kevin Charnas, who regularly makes me laugh and cry, sometimes in the same post. He is a homie but thinks he is moving to Ohio. Impossible. I will lock him and his lovely partner Will in my basement (if I had a basement) to keep them from going. He is kind and smart and thoughtful and cute. Love me some Kevin Charnas.

4. Jonniker. I have no idea why this woman isn't on everyone's must read list. I love her stream of consciousness and her endless ability to get herself in embarrassing, ant-laden situations. I can't mention loving her without saying that I also love all of her commenters, who have their Own Special Thing going on with each and every post. It all adds up to be one of my favorite places on the internet.

5, 6, 7, 8 - My girls Super Des, Suzanne of CUSS and Other Rants, Count Mockula and Ms. Little Pea. They are all distinct and wonderful voices who are smart, funny and thoughtful. Des is more tough, Suzanne is more sarcastic, Count Mockula is more matter-of-fact and Ms. Little Pea is like a cool breeze, but they all stick with me through thick and thin and comment on whatever crazy crap I write. I appreciate every word.

Oh, man, I am on 9 already and I am just getting to Jessica. I love Jessica because she is funny and honest and is a librarian and because she has massive, unruly hair like me.

10. I knew I shouldn't do this. I have about 50 more people I want to award, but I am going to just close my eyes and pick...oh, I cheated and looked: Life and Times of Chantel. I love Chantel. Love her attitude, her fortitude, her shoes...She is a strong woman who has had to be strong for a long time. She makes it look good.

All right, people. I feel lucky that I ran out of space before I ran out of people I love. That's good, right?

Go forth and award.

27 May 2008

Secret Key to Happiness #12

I was at a street fair the other day when I saw a woman angrily saying to a guy who was probably her father: "Why? Why did you have to do it like that?"

I don't know what he had done or what problem he had caused. I was only walking by for the aftermath and I was tempted to stop and give her one of my main secrets to happiness: Don't ask "Why?"

Oh, I know it is tempting. When something goes wrong, we want to do something. And if there is nothing to be done, we still want to do something, and the handiest something that comes up is to try and make the other person feel guilty.

I have been there 1000 times myself, and I have asked why more times than I can count. What have I got for my trouble? Fights. Hurt feelings. Resentment. Ruined hours and days.

To ask why is to assume the other person is guilty. To tell them, in not so many words, that you think they are thoughtless at best and a malicious idiot at worst.

I remember one time when a certain Person I Used to Live With and I were out in the garage. We were having some kind of issue and I accidentally set off the garage door opener, frightening him.

He yelled at me "WHY did you do that?" and I yelled the only thing I could think of back "Because I am obviously a f***ing moron, that's why, that's what you think, isn't it?" Good times!

My Suebobian advice? The next time the Bad Thing happens, don't ask why. Just do what you need to make it better. If you can just exercise that moment of self-restraint, your life will be so much happier for it. I promise.

25 May 2008

"Happy" Memorial Day

I always find it a little jarring when someone wishes me a "Happy Memorial Day." I grew up hearing that Memorial Day was a solemn occasion of remembrance, not a fun holiday like Fourth of July. Even Veteran's Day is happier, because it celebrates all veterans, not just those who lost their lives in wartime.

Even though I am a g*dd*mn hippie liberal peacemonger, I am still a big sappy crybaby when it comes to soldiers. I am truly amazed and appreciative that people have the courage to risk their lives for something above their own interests.

In honor of my father, and those who died fighting the Nazis with him in World War II, my dad's induction story:

My dad was born in 1918, which made him a little bit older than the average recruit when the United States joined the war in Europe. He was determined to go and enlisted, but the Army lost his enlistment papers. Twice. He could have just disappeared in those days before computers, but he really wanted to serve his country.

During the time he was waiting to be inducted, he built warships in Long Beach, California, working as a welder, as did several of his brothers.

Finally he quit his job, sold his car and turned up at the induction center with the clothes on his back and $5 in his pocket. He said "You HAVE to induct me now - I have nowhere else to go." That is classic Dad behavior - taking matters into his own hands. So they took him.

He trained in Oklahoma, then crossed the Atlantic on the former luxury liner the USS United States and was an Army Master sergeant in France, Belgium and Germany, including the Battle of the Bulge. His job was to take the big guns up to the front and make sure they worked so that other people could fire at the enemy.

He never mentioned the war once to me until 1984, which I remember because we were watching the Olympics on TV and, seeing the huge fireworks display, he started talking about how loud battle was. He said during the Battle of the Bulge, the guns were fired so much that their barrels glowed red in the darkness.

In honor of Memorial Day, I'd like to thank my dad and all the other veterans out there for their service, and to remember those who did not come home. May all those who are serving in the military and working as contractors come home alive and well.
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