I have done it. 30 days hath November and I have posted in every single one of them. Yay!
Today Kari and Josh came over. We went swimming, we played a game called Snortna (which Keem and I decided would make a great drinking game because we were laughing ourselves hysterically halfway through it) and then topped the evening watching the oddest thing I have ever seen on television. It was a spoof of Star Wars acted by thumbs. Yes. You heard me correctly. Thumbs. The world is such an odd place.
Sunday, November 30, 2008
I have done it. 30 days hath November and I have posted in every single one of them. Yay!
Saturday, November 29, 2008
I am sitting in the living room listening to Kalli call for Eddy. A few pathetic meows and he is investigating. He has not yet figured out that this typically means "Hey! Why don't you come and play with me? And by play, I mean I will attempt to eat your face. It's fun!"
Although today they seem to be actually playing together. She called to him, he went to Keem's room to find her and then chased her down the hallway. Then they did that half football game, half ballet dance that cats seem to do together. You know, tackle. Leap. Tackle. Leap, somersault, leap. Tackle.
Keem and I are going to meet my sister and nephew to see Madagascar 2. Keem won free movie tickets earlier this year so we're going to put them to good use. It is possible that Keem and I will attempt to do a double feature tomorrow because we both want to see Bolt and I really, really, really want to see Transporter 3. Hello. Jason Statham is hot. It may turn out to be a triple feature because we also want to see Four Christmases.
I managed to finish all of my monitorings for the month at 7:30 last night. The stress headache is gone for now but it will return about the middle of December.
Must go get ready, we're leaving soon. Have a great day! Only one more day left of NaBloPoMo. Thank God. I can't believe I've made it this far!
Friday, November 28, 2008
I love Fail Blog and laughed so hysterically when I pulled this up on Bloglines this morning that I may have frightened Co-Worker Rykken.
Is it wrong that I really want the "Be like Jesus" t-shirt because it's so pathetically bad in its cheesiness? The stick figure Satan makes me giggle. Plus, you know, he is my boyfriend.
Thursday, November 27, 2008
Today has been a good day. I didn't have to work (yay!) and got to be all lazy. Keem and I were going to do laundry but decided against it. We will tomorrow, probably. Yep. My life is filled with excitement. Friday night is laundry night. Woo-hoo!
I am thankful for:
Great friends like Keem and Beth
My family here, Kari, Eric and Josh and my mom who is in Arizona
The fact that I am working at a job I really do love even when it is stressing me out
The two best cats in the world, Eddy and Kalli.
The Big Bang Theory (the show, not the actual theory (Keem and I are watching the most recent episode for the 3rd time this week*)) - yes. I am thankful for TV. Shut up.
Many other things, including, but not limited to, happy pills. Thank you makers of Effexor.
*Can someone explain what throwing a digital sheep at someone on Facebook means? It was on the most recent episode and Keem and I don't get it.
Coming soon! Adorable pictures of my cats! I know you can't wait.
Having a kitten for the first time in nine years has been very interesting. Although I don't remember ever having to remove Eddy from the freezer. Now that Kalli is a little bit bigger, she has added a new twist to her quest for the ice cubes. She actually will climb into the freezer. I do not know of many people who have had to say to their cat "Please, for the love of God, get out of the ice cubes!"
Wednesday, November 26, 2008
Okay, I am cranky. I admit it. I've been kind of cranky this entire month because someone who works here at NABABNA has crossed my path and I now feel the need to annihilate them.
This person (and I have not been able to establish if I am overreacting. I am possibly overreacting but dang it, my feelings are real and you have hurt them beyond repair (Okay, not really)) has done some things this month that have really irritated me and I want to talk about it but I really can't because, let's face it, I don't want to get fired for my blog. Or for possibly saying "Dear co-worker, I really want to stab you with a fork" to said person. Because, you know, it's really hard to get another job once you've said that. Or done it for that matter.
But the best part of this is that Co-Worker Jessica understands exactly what I am going through and is the vantee to my vanter (Vant, for those not in the know, is a word I coined years ago when I was still at NABABNA's main call center. It is a cross between vent and rant and sums it up perfectly). Today she was telling me that she can't control other's actions and so she takes deep breaths (yeah, she really is that perky) to help her deal with it.
So, when I got an email from the co-worker who I wish to strangle if she sends me one more email telling me how to do my job (okay, maybe it is not that extreme. Remember I said I might be overreacting?), I had to forward my complaint to Jessica.
To be on the safe side, I deleted everything except the last part. Otherwise, it is possible that someone would be able to figure it out.
Sent: Tuesday, November 25, 2008 12:55 PM
To: Co-Worker Jessica
Oh, good Lord. Are you a bad word* idiot (not you, Jess, the irritating co-worker)?
Grumble, grumble, bad word, grumble.
Deep breaths not working. Banging head on desk.
*I try very hard not to swear at work. So instead of swearing, I say bad word a lot. It makes Jessica giggle.
I am trying to be a better person. I'm not succeeding. Also, I may have scared my co-workers when I hissed "Stop sending things to the Virtual Library" in a deep, gravely devil voice. Since I started out the day with 15 emails in there and have received about 20 more.
I love my job. I love my job. I love my job.
Hope everyone has a good Thanksgiving. I am actually cooking!* Be amazed.
*Technically I am cooking tonight. And what I am cooking is pretty easy because it is a Pampered Chef recipe for a turkey ring. And I'm substituting Rotisserie Chicken from Super Target for the turkey. But still, I am cooking.
Turkey Ring Recipe
2 pkg. refrigerated crescent rolls (garlic butter flavor because the only other ones left were reduced fat and can you say blech? I can)
2 cups chopped, cooked turkey (Or chicken if you can't find a stupid turkey loin at Super Target because they had to carry 500 20 pound turkeys instead. Convince roommate to chop chicken because the last time you tried using the Ultimate Chopper, your delicious Szechuan Chicken ended up being really spicy chicken pate)
1 1/4 cups grated Swiss Cheese
1/2 cup chopped celery (or none if you forgot to buy it)
1/2 cup sweetened, dried cranberries (the best part! I love Craisins!)
1 tbsp. dried parsley or 3 tbsp. fresh chopped parsley (whatever)
1/2 cup mayonnaise
2 tbsp. Dijon mustard (Please. I reject your Dijon mustard. I use yellow mustard. And possibly some of the Sweet and Nicely hot mustard from the Mustard Museum)
1/2 tsp. coarsely ground black pepper
1 egg white, lightly beaten (Oh, yeah. I forgot about this part)
Preheat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. In mixing bowl, combine chicken, 1 cup of the cheese, celery, parsley, mayonnaise, mustard and black pepper; mix well (or combine everything if you are me).
Scoop filling evenly over desired crescent rolls that have been laid out in an overlapping circle pattern with long point to the outside like a starburst pattern. Bring long points over filling to center, joining with short points. Brush outside with egg white and sprinkle with remaining cheese (or don't. It'll still work). Bake in oven 25 to 30 minutes, until golden brown. Serves 8.
It is fantastic. I love it. I'm also going to try duplicating a Turkey Pasta Salad recipe that I'm addicted to. With chicken instead, of course.
So saieth thy Queen CarpeDM at 3:52 PM
Tuesday, November 25, 2008
Whenever Beth and I scrapbook, we typically have her iPod on shuffle. She will put it on the play list she created for the road trip she took with her mom. It’s a great play list, filled with all different genres of music. Without fail, “Peggy Sue” by Buddy Holly will play. And Beth and I will gleefully sing along. We love the song but find it, well, not filled with the most brilliant lyrics in the world.
Beth: I bet if you counted, there won’t be more than 30 original words in this song.
DM: Well, I do have to do a post.
DM: I bet someone said to him “Hey, Buddy, I bet you can’t write a song only using these words.”
And then we giggled for awhile because the idea of someone saying “Hey, Buddy” to Buddy Holly. Which, okay, maybe you had to be there.
Peggy Sue – Buddy Holly
If you knew Peggy Sue
Then you'd know why I feel blue
About Peggy, 'bout Peggy Sue
Oh well, I love you, gal
Yes, I love you Peggy Sue
Peggy Sue, Peggy Sue
Pretty, pretty, pretty, pretty, Peggy Sue
Oh, my Peggy, my Peggy Sue
Oh, well, I love you gal
And I need you, Peggy Sue
I love you Peggy Sue
With a love so rare and true
Oh, Peggy, my Peggy Sue
Oh, well, I love you gal
Yes, I want you, Peggy Sue
Peggy Sue, Peggy Sue
Oh how my heart yearns for you
Oh, Pa-he-ggy, my Pa-he-ggy Sue
Oh, well, I love you gal
And I need you, Peggy Sue
Oh, well, I love you gal
Yes, I want you, Peggy Sue
If. You. Knew. Peggy. Sue. Then. You’d. Know. Why. I. Feel. Blue. About (‘bout is not being counted). Oh. Well. Love. Gal. Yes. Pretty. My. Need. With. A. So. Rare. And. True. Want. How. Heart. Yearns. For.
32 words. 32. Wow. That’s just really amazing.
And, although he wrote an entire song and actually became famous, I would like to point out that I once wrote a poem based on two words - Coral Reef. It was at a English thing (conference, seminar, field trip) that I was invited to back in the early 80's (11th grade? Maybe).
Suicide on the Inside
Sinking slowly, hair streaming.
Lying on the bottom.
Feeling rough coral reef.
Smelling seaweed rot.
A vision of my old life passes before my now dead eyes,
I am rising.
Gravity holds her force over me one last time.
Breaking the surface.
Spectators scream in horror.
Man swims out,
tries to save me.
Tears on my face are not my tears
but yours and the Sea's.
tears on your face because you did me wrong.
didn't care enough to love me.
Only to use me.
Fall on my face,
taste of salt.
Now that I am gone,
the cycle will continue.
Your turn is next.
The Sea will claim a new victim.
Sinking slowly, hair streaming.
Oh, here are some more notes about the poem that I found:
A group of us at my high school were picked to attend this workshop. I was in the poetry workshop and the leader decided to have us all write a poem based on one element, we had to include a coral reef. It took me maybe 15 minutes to write? The leader asked for volunteers to read their poems and after listening to this guy read this rambling about someone named Bill (there is a Roseanne episode where Darlene is going to read her poem and the guy that goes before her rambles about a bird. It was very similar to the Bill poem), I decided to read mine. I finish. There is complete silence. One person whispers "Wow." That was it. It's actually one of my favorites. Well, I told you I was depressed in high school.
Maybe tomorrow you'll get to hear the saga about why I need to make sure there are no forks at my desk. Real forks, I should say. Plastic forks are okay. You can't do any serious damage to people with them.
So saieth thy Queen CarpeDM at 1:40 PM
Monday, November 24, 2008
I am not a big fan of the Monday. Especially this close to the end of the month. So yes, I'm falling back on The Daily Meme for some help here.
This one is called Moody Monday and suggests you post a picture of your mood. Today's mood is vengeful. Gosh, this is right up my alley today.
1. Desiring vengeance; vindictive.
2. Indicating or proceeding from a desire for revenge.
3. Serving to exact vengeance.
Since I really have no life and the children (cats) are sparring in the living room, here are my babies with their most vengeful looks. And for the love of God, Kalli, leave Eddy alone. You would think that long lasting growl would be a clue that he wants you to leave him alone.
I am still fond of this picture, even though she isn't this small anymore. Every time I turn around, she is longer and fluffier. And not listening when I tell her to quit growing.
I like to think Eddy is telling Keem that this is revenge for Kalli. There are many times I catch him looking at us with this expression. The "Why did you think I needed a little sister?" look or, possibly more accurately, the "I am going to kill you in your sleep for this pain you have visited upon me." look.
Tired. Going to bed. Have to monitor 16 calls a day this week. 3 days left of it. Oh, and we can't put in any over time anymore. You have to tell me this now? So much for working late to get caught up. Grr.
Sunday, November 23, 2008
Today Beth and I spent a lot of time scrapbooking. We also met Char for dinner at Texas Roadhouse. As always, when Beth and I spend time together, there are some weird things being said. And yes, usually they are from me.
I was telling Beth about Co-Worker Rykken's response when I said I didn't understand why Bryan was not famous and Nickelback was. Rykken had said "I often wonder about that myself." Rykken has never heard Bryan sing but understands the evilness that is Nickelback (for one thing, I hate the way their name is spelled because I always want to type Nickleback. That just makes more sense).
DM: I don't know why I hate them so much.
Beth: I don't know, maybe because they're no talen hacks who have tortured all of America. And at least some parts of Canada. I think they're from Canada. So probably all of Canada.
I have just completed a layout for my Portugal album (only 2 1/2 years after the trip, of course).
DM: Pretty. Pretty pages. Pretty.
I may have been stroking them gently.
Beth: Okay, that was weird.
We have gone to Texas Roadhouse. Our waiter has taken our order for appetizers and walked away.
Char leans over to Beth and says
Char: I may be wrong but I think our waiter might be gay.
DM: For a young 'un.
Beth and Char stare at me blankly.
DM: Eh. I'd do him.
Beth and Char start laughing hysterically.
DM: You didn't say he was cute, did you?
Beth looks at me sternly.
Beth: Did you put socks on today?
Char almost spits out her pop.
Beth: That sounded kind of weird, didn't it (or motherly or something)?
Char looks confused.
DM: I don't like to wear socks.
Our waiter walks up.
DM: I don't believe in Winter.
DM: Tries to explain in a rational manner. Fails.
See, the thing is, if I wear socks, that means I am acknowledging Winter's exhistence. And I like to pretend the son of a bitch doesn't exhist. It doesn't work very well.
Char: Is that like not believing in fairies?
DM: I believe in fairies. Just not Winter.
Beth orders a baked potato with her meal. She asks for the butter and sour cream on the side. I also order a baked potato and ask for the potato to be loaded but want the butter and sour cream on the side. The waiter looks at me. I feel that I need to explain.
DM: I like to eat the cheese and bacon first.
Beth: I don't think you needed to explain your dining habits.
Waiter: I don't think that's crazy.
It is obvious he is lying from his expression. This is revealed when I return from the bathroom and found out that he told Beth and Char that he thought not believing in Winter was a little nuts.
We come back to Beth's to scrapbook. Char is going to hang out with us for a little while. I am becoming frustrated with a page layout. I am staring at the paper trimmer, trying to figure out measurements (never a good thing).
DM: Are these real inches?
Char: No. they're fake inches. They're posers.
I hold up the piece of paper I am trying to trim.
DM: Well this is 8 inches, right?
Beth: I don't know.
DM: Well, it's supposed to be 8 inches. It's 8 1/2 x 11 inch paper.
Beth: Then it is 8 1/2 inches.
I realize what I have just said. Beth and Char laugh hysterically. Beth hands me her pencil.
Beth: Write that down.
DM: I am being mocked again, aren't I?
Beth: Rightfully so.
Char: You'd think you'd recognize it by now, it happens so often.
It has been a good weekend. And now I am headed home. Hope you had a good weekend.
Saturday, November 22, 2008
I have a splitting headache so I am going to post quickly, take some ibuprofen and then enjoy a quick nap. I am over at Beth's and managed to complete two whole pages last night for my Portugal scrapbook! Whoo! I'll probably scrapbook more while she is at work but it is more fun when she is here.
Anyway, been visiting The Daily Meme every once in awhile when I am at a loss for words and found a photo hunt for Saturdays. Looks like fun. Today's topic was Reflection so I found some pictures I'm fond of taken over the years.
I like this one. It is from a trip to Canada that Beth and I took in May of 2006. I think it is cool that you can see the reflection of the trees in the rearview mirror but also see part of a picture on Beth's laptop.
This isn't the best picture but it is light reflecting off the water drops that are flying off of one of the waterfalls we stopped at on our way to Canada. I liked the way it looked.
I think we all know that I am fond of flamingos, right? What's not to like? They are pink and birds. Totally awesome.
August 5th, 2005. This was one of the many times Beth, Keem and I went to Manny's. I'm not sure why we went in August but hey, not going to complain about steak.
I'm quite proud of this picture. I like the sepia tone to it and it is one of three that I use as a backdrop on my work computer.
This is another one that I really like and also use as a backdrop at work. Plus I have it in a frame. I have a lot of pictures at work.
I have no idea how I got this to work. But I love it. What I really like about it is how the water is reflecting the green and yellow of the surrounding flowers and plants and you can only see them in the water. This is the 3rd work backdrop photo and they were all taken around the same time when Keem and I used to go walking and taking pictures. We want to start doing that again but of course winter is trying to thwart us.
Okay, all. Have a great weekend. Vittum out.
Friday, November 21, 2008
It is getting to be close to the end of the month and I am very stressed out. Work has been crazy busy and I am extremely tense. My work load seems to have doubled and it is insane. But I have a nice weekend planned. Beth and I are going to scrapbook like crazy. I am looking forward to it.
Last night we went to karaoke and it was really slow. At one point Beth turned to me and said "And this is why we still go to karaoke." Bryan was singing "Halleluiah" from Shrek and it was beautiful.
This morning, Co-Worker Rykken asked how karaoke went and I was telling him and Christy about the song.
DM: I cannot understand why he is not famous and Nickelback is.
They were amused by that. I've mentioned that I hate Nickelback with the fierceness of a thousand burning suns, right?
Anyway, off to take a nap before Beth calls. Hope you all have had a good week.
Can you believe it is the 21st? The month is more than half over and I've made it every day so far. Amazing.
Thursday, November 20, 2008
So Keem is telling me this morning about this odd dream she had. Long story short, she and Patrick Dempsey are wandering through this old building. Now I can think of worse things to dream about than spending time with Patrick Dempsey (had a serious crush on him after "Can't Buy Me Love") so I expect that this will be an interesting glimpse into my roommate's psyche.
And boy howdy, it is.
Apparently the old building is filled with lions and sharks. Together. Living in harmony.
DM: Are they land sharks?
Apparently not. Nor is the building filled with water. But the sharks are getting around somehow and they are hungry. So are the lions.
Keem: So I run off and leave Patrick Dempsey...
DM: Wait. You left him behind?
DM: What happened?
Keem: The lions and sharks got him.
DM: You didn't go save him?
Keem: I'm not going into a room with lions and sharks!
DM: You let Patrick Dempsey die. I can't believe you let him die. That's so mean.
Keem: It was more of a "Save yourself" situation so I did.
After that, the dream turned into some weird thing where there was a fake T. Rex wandering around trying to kill Keem and one of our co-workers showed up and distracted the dinosaur with something shiny.
The dream reminded me of Saturday Night Live when it was funny and the Land Shark skit. I miss that skit. Let's see if it is on YouTube. I couldn't find it but I did find it here in case you need reminding of the greatness of the Land Shark.
Wednesday, November 19, 2008
I came across this picture on I Can Haz Cheezburger the other day and it made me laugh.
Last weekend, on our way home from La Crosse, I was getting really tired. Typically I am not allowed to sleep in the car but Keem was feeling sorry for me since it was a fairly hellish weekend (plus I took the hit from the exploding bottle of Welch's Grape soda for her) so she said it would be okay this one time.
But then she turned on the CD player. In the CD player is the CD, something Beth made for Keem years ago (possibly 8) and it has some great songs on it (The Devil Went Down to Georgia) and some horrible songs (anything by New Kids on the Block). We don't turn it on very often because it is skipping in a lot of places but when we do, the car transforms into the karaoke showdown.
Keem usually will not sing along in the car, not sure why. She's got a good voice and used to be in choir. But not everyone is like me and not afraid to make their voice heard so I deal with it. Plus, she typically tells me to stop singing with the radio because "Dana, you're not at karaoke."
But this CD offers sing along options. There is the aforementioned "The Devil Went Down to Georgia" which is hugely fun. Keem and I will try to keep up with the Charlie Daniels Band but typically fail horribly. Then we have to start the song over again. So this is what it usually sounds like:
K & DM: The devil went down to Georgia, he was looking for a soul to steal
DM: He was in a bind 'cause he was way hind.
Keem: Hind? What's a hind?
DM: A small deer. Shut up.
Then we start over.
K & DM: The boy said: "My name's Johnny and it might be a sin,
DM: But I'll take your bet, you son of a gret?
Keem: You're gonna regret. Dork.
And we start over.
K & DM: And if you win you get this shiny fiddle made of gold.
Keem: But if you lose, the devil gets your sooooooul (completely off key). Crap!
And we start over. This might be one of the reasons why the CD skips.
Personally I think the devil should have won. His fiddle playing was much better than Johnny's. "Granny, does your dog bite no, child, no" is one of the dumbest lines ever.
Also on the CD are some songs from Rocky Horror Picture Show.
There's the Time Warp, of course, as evidenced from the above picture. I still do not know what the words are after "And then a step to the right." I usually just sing nonsense words. Keem has not yet caught me. She might be singing nonsense words as well. Hmm, let's use our good friend, Google. Oh! Well, that makes sense.
With your hands on your hips
You bring your knees in tight
But it's the pelvic thrust that really drives you insane
Let's do the time warp again!
But the best possible song on this CD is sung by the wondrous Tim Curry. Any man that can look as good as he did wearing a corset and lipstick is fantastic. The little laugh he does at the end? Gets me every time.
So the weekend was kind of a bust but the road trip was fun. As long as you have good music and a good friend, the ride is more enjoyable. It would be better if we had a new CD made or maybe an iPod road trip doohickey but still, it was great.
Tuesday, November 18, 2008
It is 6:32 AM. Instead of lying in my cozy bed, hitting the snooze button repeatedly, I am in the living room. Do you know why I am in the living room? Because at 6 AM, keem woke me up to tell me there was water pouring from the light fixture in her bathroom.
The water has stopped but we are waiting for the engineer to come and do something. Not sure what. But neither Keem or I want to take a shower now because you just know that is when someone will come pounding on the door.
Right now Keem is sitting on the couch and Kalli is attacking her. This is what I am hearing:
"Ow. Ow. Ow. No. Not the fingers. Ow. Obviously you do not understand the language of Ow."
She (the kitten, not Keem) is insane. Eddy, who is an intelligent water-fearing cat, stayed far away from the bathroom during the water catastrophe. Kalli was inside it. Staring at the water with fascination. She is also obsessed with ice cubes and has climbed inside of the freezer several times to get closer to them when I'm filling my glass.
I am really tired and want to go to bed. Seems to me you should be handed a "get-out-of-work-free" pass on days like this.
Oh, the engineer just called. Apparently the idiots who live upstairs forgot to put the shower curtain inside of the bath tub. Brilliant.
I'd love to say I'm going back to bed but unfortunately I need to guard Keem against the possibility of the engineer walking in on her while she's in the shower.
This is not my week.
Monday, November 17, 2008
One of my co-workers sent this to me this morning. I don’t know if this actually is a Jeff Foxworthy thing but it could be. And it is very true.
Jeff Foxworthy on Minnesota:
If you consider it a sport to gather your food by drilling through 18 inches of ice and sitting there all day hoping that the food will swim by - You might live in Minnesota (Okay, I personally think this is insane).
If you're proud that your state makes the national news 96 nights each year because International Falls is the coldest spot in the nation - You might live in Minnesota.
If your local Dairy Queen is closed from November through March - You might live in Minnesota (Actually the Dairy Queen is open. It’s the A&W that’s closed seasonally).
If you have worn shorts and a parka at the same time - You might live in Minnesota (I don’t actually wear shorts but I have worn capris and my heavy coat at the same time).
If you know how to say Wayzata (Why-zetta), Mahtomedi (Mah-toe-me-die), Cloquet (Clo-kay), Edina (Eee-dye-na) and Shakopee (Shock-oh-pee) - You might live in Minnesota.
If vacation means going "up north" for the weekend - You might live in Minnesota (Done it when I’ve gone to Brainerd for the weekend before. Not for many years but it’s been there).
You measure distance in hours - You might live in Minnesota (I didn’t even realize I’ve done this before but I will typically say “It’s about 15 minutes” as opposed to “It’s about 5 miles.”
You know several people who have hit deer more than once - You might live in Minnesota.
You often switch from "Heat" to "A/C" in the same day and back again - You might live in Minnesota (Or, in my case, you keep the air conditioning on throughout the winter).
You can drive 65 mph through 2 feet of snow during a raging blizzard without flinching - You might live in Minnesota (fortunately I don’t know anyone who is that big of any idiot).
You see people wearing hunting clothes at social events - You might live in Minnesota (oh, dear God, no).
You install security lights on your house and garage and leave both unlocked - You might live in Minnesota (maybe in the 70’s).
You think of the major food groups as beer, fish, and Venison - You might live in Minnesota (No, Hell no and no).
You carry jumper cables in your car, and your girlfriend knows how to use them - You might live in Minnesota (I even know how to use jumper cables and I’ve never had a car).
There are 7 empty cars running in the parking lot at Mill's Fleet Farm at any given time - You might live in Minnesota (Don’t spend that much time at the Farm but probably true).
You design your kid's Halloween costume to fit over a snowsuit - You might live in Minnesota (ruins a good costume if you have to wear your coat over it).
Driving is better in the winter because the potholes are filled with snow - You might live in Minnesota (true).
You know all 4 seasons: almost winter, winter, still winter, and of course, road construction - You might live in Minnesota (they forgot Mosquito season).
You can identify a southern or eastern accent - You might live in Minnesota (can’t everybody?).
Your idea of creative landscaping is a plastic deer next to your blue spruce - You might live in Minnesota (personally I prefer pink flamingos).
If "Down South" to you means Iowa - You might live in Minnesota.
You know "a brat" is something you eat - You might live in Minnesota (I had brats this weekend. Yum).
You find -10 degrees "a little chilly" - You might live in Minnesota (depends on what time of the year it is (if we’ve had a cold snap of minus 30 degrees for a week or more at a time, then yes, minus 10 is “a little chilly.”)
You actually understand these jokes - You DO live in Minnesota (or Wisconsin).
So saieth thy Queen CarpeDM at 11:36 AM
Sunday, November 16, 2008
I was just headed for bed when I realized I had not posted yet today. Glad I remembered.
Anyway, while sitting here, trying to figure out what I was going to post about, I just saw a Geico commercial. They are very, very, very weird. This was one of the Geico lizard talking to some woman while this crazy safari guy is following him. The crazy safari guy is hiding in a dumpster which gets picked up by a garbage truck.
I do not see what this has to do with auto insurance. But then, I don't really get the cavemen ones as well.
I did not get to go to Shopko. It was very sad. Plus I had a bottle of Welch's Grape soda explode over me in the car. This has not been my weekend.
Saturday, November 15, 2008
So my exciting trip to LaCrosse has so far been kind of a bust. Keem and I left work early yesterday and we were off. I was excited about the chance of eating her mother's Chinese Hot Dish (which is very much what my Grandmother used to make but we called it Chow Mein).
I was not feeling good again and really felt sick to my stomach. I was sipping my Orange Hi-C that we got from McDonalds this morning and all of sudden I knew what was going to happen. I gasped out "I'm going to throw up." Kathy looked at me and said "Oh, you don't want to do that." I replied "No, I really don't."
Friday, November 14, 2008
Okay, so I have talked about this before. I love this website. I can't help it. It is just so damn awesome.
I am signed up to receive the wailing list at work and so today, Christy overheard me laughing.
Christy: What's so funny?
DM: Hee! New Despair.com Demotivator.
Christy: Forward it to me.
I do so.
Christy: Oh, Dana. You and your Demotivators.
DM: Yeah, but it is awesome and you know it.
Christy: Yes, it is.
This was the new Demotivator:
God, I love them. And the funny thing is I checked out Melissa's site today and she had posted the same thing. Great minds work alike.
And now I have the stupid "Love is in the air" song stuck in my head. Grr.
Speaking of romance and its quirks - did anyone watch Grey's Anatomy last night? While I'm thrilled that Denny's real (apparently) and back (apparently), is anyone else completely confused? The man is dead. How can Izzie be kissing him? Does that mean she's nuts?
Thursday, November 13, 2008
This will help me get through November!
Sunday Stealing: The Nudder Meme
1. Who did you spend at least two hours with today?
Keem, of course. Co-workers Jessica, Rykken & Christy and Boss Cheryl.
2. What do you look forward to most in the next six weeks?
Going to LaCrosse tomorrow with Keem, Thanksgiving and Christmas
3. Who was the last person you called?
Beth to tell her I can't go to karaoke tonight because I have to go into work early tomorrow
4. What were you doing at 12am last night?
Getting ready to go to bed - last night was the weekly America's Next Top Model/Stylista viewing with Keem and Kari. Kari was sick the week before so we had 2 episodes of each to watch. Which is almost too much drama to handle in one night. Almost.
5. Are your parents married/divorced?
Divorced. My father is also dead.
6. When did you last see your mom?
Christmas. I think. Um, after looking at my blog, I realized it was in April. Wow. I'm bad at this keeping track of time thing.
7. What are you wearing right now?
Black and white paisley top, purple pants
8. Where is your favorite place to be?
My living room with the cats, watching something fun and either blogging or playing a game on my pretty, pretty laptop.
9. Where is your least favorite place to be?
The dentist's office. Which I am going to have to go to soon because my left side of the mouth is really bothering me - especially when I drink something cold. And apparently one of the wisdom teeth that I swear got pulled years ago is trying to come back on my right side. My mouth is not a happy mouth.
10. Where would you go if you could go anywhere?
Back to Portugal. Travel Europe.
11. Where do you think you'll be in 10 years?
Still in Minnesota. Kari would kill me if I moved. Still working for NABABNA.
12. What was the last thing that really made you laugh?
Probably watching Kalli dive head first into Keem's water glass while swatting her hand away. You probably had to see it but it was hilarious.
13. What cities/towns/villages have you lived in?
Mahtomedi, MN. Saint Paul, MN. Maplewood, MN. Madison, WI. I'm sure there are others. I moved a lot in my twenties.
14. Are you a social person?
Good God, no. I am not overly fond of people. Beth told me once I am not a people person, I'm a person person.
15. Do you sleep alone?
Why does every meme ask this question? Yes. I am 41 and alone. The only thing that sleeps with me is Hippo. And occasionally Kalli.
Wednesday, November 12, 2008
I live in a whirlwind of excitement. Here's why:
- So we come home from work and Keem is refilling the treat bag (gallon size Glad bag that we pour a variety of crunchy treats into so it is mixed properly for Eddy (he's spoiled. We admit it). Kalli is circling around Keem's ankles, trying her best to convince us that she is starving and no one feeds her and she has to scramble for crumbs because we are so mean and cruel to her. And then she leaps! And grabs on to Keem's shorts for dear life, her back claws digging into Keem's leg. The next thing I know, Kalli is hanging straight down, her front paws holding on to Keem's shirt. Keem is saying "Ow, ow, ow! Cat! Ow!" And I am in the kitchen, watching all of this. Do I run into the living room to save Keem? No. I am laughing hysterically and wishing I had my camera handy.
- Kalli discovered how to get on top of the Entertainment Center last night. But she does not know how to get down and sits there and mews. So I rescued her. And about 15 minutes later, when I am in bed, sleeping like a normal person, I hear a crash. She has knocked over the shelf the VHS tapes are on (eventually we will get rid of them. It's not like we have hooked up the VCR in this apartment) and is back on the Entertainment Center. Still hasn't figured how to get down. I rescuse her again. Hmm. Perhaps I should move the small table she's using to leap up onto the DVD rack and from there the Entertainment Center. That would be smart.
- Keem just opened a box from Swiss Colony and is singing "I've got a box of mixed nuts, diddly dee" (to the tune of "I've got a lovely bunch of coconuts", in case you were confused). Hee!
- If you thought getting the Despair.com catalog was the highlight of my month, you would be wrong. Clearly it was the Mustard Museum newsletter. Featuring a picture of the owner dressed as Edward Splatterhands. Wish I which I could find on their website because it is seriously funny and would creep out James (the guy's hands are dripping with mustard).
Who needs depressing poetry written at the height of my angsty years when you have all of this, right? My life is so full.
- Oh, and also, when my mom asked me if I was still taking Meridia and if it worked, I said no, my prescription ran out and it worked when I remembered to take it. Her response? "Oh, Dana, you're a big girl." Um, yeah, that's why I was taking a diet aid! I know that's not how she meant it but still, work on the phrasing there, mother.
Tuesday, November 11, 2008
Back in High School when teenage angst was what I went through daily but didn't know there was a specific phrase for it (I graduated in 1985. I'm old), I used to write poems based on my crush of the week's name spelled out. So if his name was John Jacob Jingleheimer Schmidt, each line would start with the next letter of his name*. I wrote my best poetry in High School. In other words, my best poetry was written when I was deep in the depths of depression. I once wrote a poem where it was a discussion between a teenage girl and Death about whether He should come get her while she was bleeding out from slicing her wrists. Not one of my best poems, by any stretch of the imagination, but darkly imaginative.
And if you were to ask me if I would want that creativity back again, if I would trade my happiness now for what I once had? I would say Hell No! While I miss school (the learning, not the uncertainty and the bullies), I don't miss the depressions or the hours spent sobbing into my pillow case (or once my cat Kitty's fur (she was named Buttons but we never called her that)). I am thankful daily for Effexor.
Anyway, it is day 11 of the month and I needed to come up with something. Sure, I could post yet another picture of Kalli and talk about how she is secretly trying to kill us (okay, probably not) or how her newest obsession is with ice cubes (Seriously. She will try to dive into our glasses for them. I dropped an ice cube on the floor and she played with it for two minutes (and probably would keep playing if she hadn't knocked it underneath the dishwasher) but I thought I would try another prompt from Writer's Digest.
Today's prompt is this:
Write a 26-word story where every word begins with a different letter of the alphabet.
I'm not sure exactly why Boris turned out to be suffering from panic attacks and anxiety but hey, that's how it worked.
Plus, this was a lot harder than I thought it would be.
*One's first name was Scott. This is how the poem started. Good Lord, was I weird (okay, still am but so not the point)!
Sand and sunshine were promised in the ocean of your eyes.
Crying was not known, the crying I was soon to know.
Oceans have destroyed many, who, searching for sanity
traveled, lost in the depths. I,
Too, am lost.
I really don't remember it that well. The first two lines came easily and then it was
Oceans have something or another many, who searching for something
traveled, lost because or in something. I,
Too, am lost, lost in the something.
So not my best work. I think tomorrow I'll tell the story of my favorite poem I ever wrote. That should be interesting. And, oh, yeah, kind of depressing as well.
Monday, November 10, 2008
This could be Kalli.
I have fallen prey to the horrible spelling of the LOL cats from I Can Has Cheezburger. It's the tiny faces and the cuteness and I can't resist them.
After all, they have Karaoke kitties:
And evil kitties (just like in my own apartment):
But the best possible thing I found tonight? LOL Star Trek. Seriously. This is hilarious.
Sunday, November 09, 2008
Last week I decided to put the lion hat on Kalli (why should Eddy be the only one to be tortured by Keem and I?). Just to see what her reaction would be.
This was it:
The hat was off within 2.5 seconds and this was the only picture I got. That was one pissed off kitten.
I guess I really shouldn't be surprised that today, out of the blue, she decided to bite the hand that feeds her.
Saturday, November 08, 2008
I found this a long time ago and might as well post it now. It still counts.
Grab the book nearest to you, turn to page 18, and find line 4.
The wily bird, however, leads them only to their deaths, flashing its wings enticingly until they fall into a bottomless racine. - About the Alicanto, a strange bird monster. From the book "The Element Encyclopedia of Magical Creatures" by John and Caitlin Matthews. It was a Christmas gift from my mom and is seriously cool.
Stretch your left arm out as far as you can.
Okay. My elbow cracked. That was painful. Thanks a lot.
What was the last thing you watched on TV?
Journey to the Center of the Earth. Actually much better than I thought it would be. And Brendan Fraser is seriously hot. Now I'm watching National Treasure 2. Nicholas Cage is also hot.
Without looking, guess what time it is.
Now look at the clock. What is the actual time?
With the exception of the computer, what can you hear?
Dramatic music from the movie. Callie trying to attack Eddy in the cat tube.
Before you took this survey, what were you looking at?
CDW's blog on Word Press. Thinking about moving mine. Might have to do a test run.
What are you wearing?
White and pink striped tank top and jeans.
Did you dream last night?
More than likely but I don't remember.
When did you last laugh?
About 15 minutes ago, watching Kalli run around the room like a crazy furry top.
What is on the walls of the room you're in?
Seen anything weird lately?
What do you think of this quiz?
It's a quiz. Not the world's greatest.
What was the last film you saw?
Journey to the Center of the Earth. Were you not paying attention?
If you became a multi-millionaire overnight, what would you buy?
I don't know. Buy a house. Buy my sister a house. Maybe get an El Camino (and possibly a driver's license).
Tell me something about you that I don't know.
Late at night, whenever everyone else is sleeping, I change into a half human, half snow leopard creature. Well, no, but I can't think of anything that I haven't told people about.
If you could change one thing about the world, regardless of guilt or politics, what would you do?
Gay marriage would be legal.
Do you like to dance?
I like to chair dance.
Is going to be out of office soon. Thank the Lord.
Imagine your first child is a girl, what would you name her?
Imagine your first child is a boy, what would you name him?
Dmitri Aloyious. Good thing I'm not having kids, huh?
Would you consider living abroad?
I would live in Portugal in a heart beat.
What do you want God to say to you when you reach the pearly gates?
Why, yes, Dana, cats and dogs do get to come to Heaven. Muffin, Kitty, Clyde and Maime are all waiting for you.
I don't tag. But if you happen to do this, let me know and I'll come read it. I am fond of the memes.
Friday, November 07, 2008
Last month, Beth turned 30. She had a party at her house which we referred to as the milestone party. After all, so far this year she has bought a house, graduated from college and turned 30.
I spent the weekend so we could scrapbook and we had a lot of fun. Saturday, the night of the party, Beth and her mom ran up to Target so they could buy Catch Phrase. We had some time to kill and Beth had been telling me about the game so I wanted to try it.
Have you played this game? Seriously fun. The whole point is to get people to guess your catch phrase but you can't say the word/phrase, something that rhymes or "It starts with this letter."
The party was low key and that was cool with us. We sat outside by the fire (her mom and Scott (her mom's boyfriend) brought over their fire pit) and told stories and laughed. Her mom cooked so there was sloppy joes, macaroni salad, cupcakes, the best chocolate chip cookies in the history of the world (Laurie is an excellent cook).
After every one left, Beth and I sat in the living room and played Catch Phrase. I can't remember everything but there was this one clue I gave her.
"It's yellow and it is my favorite weed and you can make a wish." Beth correctly guessed Dandelion.
A little bit later, Beth gave me the clue "They swim."
I shouted out "Dandelions!"
Yeah, that so wasn't the right thing. Beth gave me the "You are a freak" look. I told her I had actually meant tadpoles. You know because they're so similar to dandelions. Of course I got them mixed up.
Another thing that happened that weekend was on Friday, Beth made a pot roast for Laurie and I. I was sitting by her refridgerator where she has these magnetic bars (you can hang knives on them but eventually she's going to use them to hang pictures). Beth turns around and sees me holding one of the bars to my head.
Well, obviously I need to come up with something logical to say. She's got the "You are a freak" look (one I am so very familiar with) on her face.
DM: I'm trying to see if my head is magnetic. It's not.
Beth turns to her mother.
Beth: In case you were wondering, Dana's head is not magnetic.
Laurie: I better write that down. I might forget that.
I am mocked constantly. I don't understand.
Anyway, the whole point to this is I had fun celebrating Beth's milestones with her and Catch Phrase is an absolutely awesome game. I think part of the fun is the odd answers people come up with.
Thursday, November 06, 2008
So Co-Worker Christine (not Christy) got married last month and then had her honeymoon/symbolic ceremony in Mexico this month. She sent out the pictures and there were some that caught my attention and, yes, amused me.
This amused me because of the whole frog aspect. She also brought me back a Senor Frog's shot glass which one of my many frogs now looks like he is imbibing from it.
May I just say HA! I have felt like this many times. Probably a good thing I don't drive.
And I just thought this was a pretty clever way of saying "Please don't litter."
Congratulations to Christine and Wilder. I am very happy for them both and wish I could have been there to help them celebrate (Keem and I were invited but I ran out of PTO months ago. And there was no way I could come up with the money for it either).
Wednesday, November 05, 2008
So there's an automatic recount for the Minnesota Senate race. Norm Coleman & Al Franken were pretty close. Please God, please don't make me have to deal with another 6 years of Norm Coleman. Please. I really, really miss Paul Wellstone.
Tuesday, November 04, 2008
It's 9:45 CT and right now the mood is cheerful in my apartment. I am watching the crowds in Chicago cheering at Senator Obama's election headquarters. There are thousands of people there. It looks good right now with 206 electoral votes in Obama's favor. I'm also hoping to see something about the race for Senator. I am hoping very much that I do not have to deal with Norm Coleman anymore. Apparently the television is listening to me and just flashed that it is Norm 41% and Al Franken 42%.
Anyway, to kill some time and to help me keep on the path to finishing NaBloPoMo, here are some pictures from the last few days. Of course, I must show you pictures of my adorable babies, Kalli and Eddy.
Kalli finds everything in the kitchen absolutely fascinating.
So she was quite excited when I started unloading the dishwasher the other day.
The fact that this is a sharp blade doesn't faze her at all. I did move it away from her quickly.
I have been spending some time at I Can Has Cheezburger. Makes me laugh. Kalli is fascinated by the pictures. I tried to angle her so I could show the picture she was looking at as well but she would not have it.
Here Eddy enjoys a moment of peace before Kalli attacks him. He's taking to hiding in the tube when she is on her rampages throughout the apartment.
And now she has found him. He tries to destroy her with his laser eyes but it is not working.
Now for some pictures of me in all my beauteous glory.
Remember when I said I would post a picture of when I cut my hair and everyone was laughing hysterically about it at work? Well, here it is.
This was my Halloween costume. I was the cheap, white trash version of Hello Kitty. I may start wearing my hair this way more often.
And then this one is my favorite. Even though my hair looks like crap and my face is incredibly shiny.
I voted. Thumbs up, America!
And to update at 10:02 PM CT. He won! He won! Obama won! I am so happy!
Monday, November 03, 2008
So I was updating our Internal Library today and was getting more and more depressed at the state of our economy. Two of our clients have suspended paying dividends, one is filing for bankruptcy and another one is rumored to be going bankrupt.
I asked Co-Worker Rykken if I could vent and he agreed. I pointed out the Internal Library alerts and bemoaned how bad things are. He reminded me tomorrow was the beginning of the change and that did help but I wasn't completely convinced.
I went back to the Internal Library inbox and found this email from him:
From: Co-Worker Rykken
Sent: Monday, November 03, 2008 1:44 PM
To: Internal Library Inbox
Happy Funtime Company announced that sales are at an all time high. CEO Jerry Smiles said the future of Happy Funtime looks positive, "The future is so bright you will need to wear shades." Coincidently, Sunglass Hut sales are up 2%. Sales of Cory Hart's CDs are still rock bottom.
This made me laugh (of course) and Co-Workers Jessica and Christy asked me what was so funny. I forwarded the email to them.
Christy: Who is Corey Hart?
DM: Groan (she's really young). "I wear my sunglasses at night so I can…so I can…"
Rykken: Oh. That means I was wrong. I meant the other song, the future's so bright one
Being me and knowing that this will drive me crazy if I don't figure out who sang the song, I Googled it.
DM: It's Timbuk 3
Christy: Well, that's an interesting name.
Rykken: Might explain why they don't have a lot of popular songs
That led to a discussion of 80's movies (started because I remember the Timbuk 3 song being in Kuffs and Rykken thinks it is in The Secret of My Success) and Rykken's trying to remember Michael J. Fox's name led to the discussion about how awesome the Back to the Future movies are (Keem and I had a mini marathon Saturday night (they were playing in order on Encore. I love cable)). And now my mood is better. I love my job.
I've also been typing November 4th, 2008 on everything today. I may just be a little eager for tomorrow.
Sunday, November 02, 2008
Since I decided to give NaBloPoMo a try again this year, I thought I would bring back the Encyclopedia of Dee Em again. It's fitting that I go with Halloween, considering it was a few days ago.
I used to subscribe to Writer's Digest and every once in awhile will visit their writer's prompt area for something to kick start my imagination. This was the first one on the list: Thinking back to your childhood and the many Halloween costumes you wore, which costume was your favorite and why?
Halloween has been my 2nd favorite holiday for years. I remember a couple of my costumes, there is one where I am a hobo and am wearing an old jacket of my dad's, along with some black makeup for coal (apparently I was riding the rails). One year my next door neighbor, Linda, Kari and I decided to dress like ghosts from different eras. Linda was from the 1950's and looked like a dead pin up girl. Kari and I went for earlier time frames - I was from the 1750's and Kari was from the 1850's. Well, as close as we could get since we really didn't have a lot of money to put into it. Pretty much we all wore a lot of white paint and blush along with whatever we could come up with for our dresses.
One thing I do remember about this night was Linda and I were harassed by some jerk for being too old to trick or treat. I think we were 15 and Kari was 13. Um, yeah, how is that too old? Plus, are we supposed to let my 13 year old sister wander around by herself?
Years later, my friend Becky and I went to a Halloween party and she was dressed like a cat and I went as a gypsy. I have the picture somewhere, I'll have to see if I can dig it out. Lots of layers, huge gold hoop earrings (it was the 80's after all) and my tarot cards for that touch of authenticity (I was never very good at them but it was fun to try).
When I was working at the Dark Side Bank, I worked with a guy named Otis. When I started, I thought the office needed a Milo. One day I was at the store in our building and I saw this ball that had a smiley face on it. Smiley face = Milo. The office embraced Milo and that began my collection of smiley faces. By the time I ended up quitting, I had at least 50 (most of them were gifts from co-workers (which is where most of my frog collection at NABANA has come from)).
For the 3 Halloweens that I worked there, each year I did a different costume. I'm not sure of the order but each year I was Milo dressed as something. One year it was Milo dressed as a pumpkin. The costume was incredibly simple. A shirt the color of whatever I wanted (orange for pumpkin) and electrical tape. I made a smiley face out of the electrical tape and attached it to my shirt.
The next year I bought a witch's hat and said Milo and I were arguing over what we were going to be. I wanted to be a witch and he wanted to be a cat. I had a small stuffed black cat and Milo was created on a yellow shirt with whiskers.
The last year I was there I went simple and just said Milo was a ghost. I had lost my enthusiam for my job about that time and I would leave in 2 months. My last day was December 31st, 1999 and I started at NABABNA on January 10th, 2000. Best decision I ever made.
In 2001, I was over at Keem's apartment (this was before we became roommates) and she was showing me her old prom dress and a wizard's outfit she had made as a Halloween costume. She offered to let me wear her prom dress as a costume. I decided to go as a princess (long before I became Queen of the Universe (I was still Queen of the Dorks then)). The dress was extremely low cut and at one point, one of my co-workers was walking by when I had leaned over to plug my monitor cord back in (my boss liked to unplug it as a joke. Once he did it while I was in an escalated call. I was not laughing). All of a sudden his eyes got hilariously huge because he got an extreme shot of Dana cleavage.
I was feeling a bit uncomfortable after that so I put on my coat and a pair of sunglasses and I became Incognito Princess.
My favorite costume was the Queen of the Universe outfit that I did a couple of Halloweens in a row.
Those are glow in the dark stars. They are attached by velcro. The word you're looking for is awesome.
If I can get the picture of my costume for Friday to work, I'll show it to you. I tried to go as a cat disguised as a pumpkin carved as a cat. But the electrical tape didn't work. Instead I ended up as a very cheap, white trash version of Hello Kitty.
Apparently Keem overheard two of my co-workers talking about my costume. The big problems they had was that I didn't look like Hello Kitty. Um, hello. I was a cat. I was waving. And it was a freaking joke!
What did you do for Halloween?
Saturday, November 01, 2008
So Miss Melissa posted a bunch of links to people who are writing about the books they loved as a child. I clicked on one of the links randomly and found this meme at My Past in Books (awesome name). I will post every day this stupid November! I will!
What was the last book you bought?
I'm not positive. It may have been Acheron by Sherrilyn Kenyon but that was awhile ago.
Name a book you have read MORE than once.
Anything by Nora Roberts. She's my favorite author and I'll usually reread her books while I'm waiting for her new books. Also Kane and Abel and The Prodigal Daughter by Jeffrey Archer. I've read Kane and Abel about 13 times and The Prodigal Daughter about 12.
Has a book ever fundamentally changed the way you see life? If yes, what was it?
I don't think so. I do remember once deciding to model my room on a Laura Ingalls Wilder book and I was going to have a Spartan exhistence. Just my bed and one doll. That didn't last long.
How do you choose a book? (eg. by cover design and summary, recommendations or reviews)
Authors - I have a few favorite authors and will buy their books automatically. Nora Roberts, Mil Millington, Charlaine Harris, Kim Harrison, etc. Oh, and Christopher Moore. Neil Gaiman. Okay, it used to be a few. I've expanded the list apparently because this was only supposed to be one or two. After that, if I'm looking for a new author, I'll look at the book description - what is it about? If it intrigues me, I'll usually pick it up. I wish I got to the library more often since I've wasted some good money on books that were incredibly annoying. However, this method did lead me to discover the Thursday Next books by Jasper Ffordes and they were fantastic.
Do you prefer Fiction or Non-Fiction?
Definitly fiction. I read fiction to escape into the book. I will read some non-fiction but typically autobiographies. And I really have to like the person. So far I've read The Rock's and Meat Loaf's autobiographies. I've heard Bruce Campbell's is good and I'd love to read Adam West's.
What’s more important in a novel - beautiful writing or a gripping plot?
Well, I'd really like it to have both. There are a few authors that can do both - Nora Roberts (her descriptions of Alaska and Wyoming have made me want to move there) and Harlan Coben (he did a description of going to a baseball game with his father that made me want to start following baseball. I hate sports!) both come to mind.
Most loved/memorable character (character/book).
God. How do I choose? Can I pick Buffy? I do like the novels. Um, I think I have to say Shadow from American Gods by Neil Gaiman. I really loved him. I also loved Davey Dempsey in Jennifer Crusie's Welcome to Temptation and was thrilled when she wrote his own book (Faking It).
Which book or books can be found on your nightstand at the moment?
I don't read in bed. Unfortunately I have discovered that reading in bed is not conducive to a good night's sleep. I will sit up until I finish the book.
What was the last book you’ve read, and when was it?
I just finished Sherilyn Kenyon's Acheron this morning. At 7:30 because Kalli decided she was hungry and thought biting my feet would convince me to get out of bed (she was right). Now I don't know what I'm going to read. Hopefully Keem and I will be taking a trip to the Big Book Store in the Sky (Barnes and Noble. And no, I have no idea why we call it that. But I call Archiver's the Mother Ship so I guess it kind of makes sense. That many books feels like I'm in Heaven).
Have you ever given up on a book half way in?
Sometimes. It is very rare because it is difficult for me to put time into a book and not finish. I have finished some absolutely horrible books because of this. Others I will read the last chapter so I can stop reading it (Dean Koontz's Face scared the crap out of me so I read the last chapter. It was well written but really creepy).