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February 2005 Archives


February 28, 2005

Plus, there's the pain.
It's centered in the uterus, naturally.
Has hung around all weekend and hit full force today.
The usual drugs are doing nada, zilch, zero.
Somehow it's affecting the right hip.
And possibly the knee joints.
Rendering me a big ball of icky oozy pain.
It hasn't been this bad in a long time.
I am thankful that I had forgotten.

First impressions are everything

February 28, 2005

I hate bra shopping.

I want a bra that both fits comfortably and presents nicely, and I honestly don't think that is asking too much. What I do understand to be too much is wanting all that and something pretty to look at.

Not that my breasts aren't pretty to look at; quite the opposite, in fact.

(I can see my mother's eyes widening, my name coming form her mouth with the emphasis on the last syllable, Valette, in disbelief of the things I choose to share with the internet. The internet likes my breasts, I'm sure, Mom.)

Instead, all I find are bras that were meant to hold torpedo boobs, or bras that were never created with the ability to hold anything... substantial.

Frankly, I am surprised at the number of bras I tried on that were funnel-shaped. Do some women want their boobs to point at their companion? Do the men who manufacture the bras want their women's boobs to point at them?

Or do the bras look fine and natural on other women and completely pointy on me? I've never notice my boobs being extra-pointy, and no one has ever mentioned it.

If I had a friend whose boobs were extra-pointy I would definitely mention it. That's the kind of friend I am.

Evil mastermind

February 28, 2005

Stepping into the creative revenge department is my brother Marty with his superduperous suggestion to toss a permanent marker (or five) into my neighbor's wash next time she decides to do the spin cycle after midnight.

I'm heading to the store at lunch to stock up on Sharpies, but my gut tells me one will do the trick quite nicely.

Soundtrack of life

February 26, 2005

Lisa Loeb - Jake

I was preparing for a class trip to Paris my junior year in high school. A senior who was well below my interest radar suddenly became more interested in me than I would have liked.

I dreaded going to the meetings held in the evening where we learned about passports and exchanging money, knowing that he and his father would be there. Dreaded that his father may know that he liked me. Dreaded that my mother would find out he liked me. And for all of that I hated him.

His name was Jake.

One heck of a transaction

February 24, 2005

Yes, I always take my credit card to the bathroom.
Don't you?

Every four minutes

February 23, 2005

I like to listen to music while I do the dishes. Singing and moving along to a beat keeps me from thinking how much I hate doing dishes.

Last night was no different, and since our CD changer was empty (not having enough energy to choose a selection of CDs and do dishes), I turned the radio on. Which proved to be a mistake.

This fake-y "news" blips kept coming on about Paris Hilton's hacked cell phone and Elizabeth Hurley playing in the fifth Harry Potter Movie and Charlize Theron playing in a movie about sexual harassment. Okay, fine, whatever. I do not care about any part of the Hollywood lifestyle.

After an hour, however, I noticed that I was able to repeat it nearly verbatim with the fake DJ. I paid a bit closer attention and realized this "breaking news" was playing at every commercial break, after every two songs.

Does the station management really believe that so few people are listening that they have to repeat themselves so often? Every four minutes?

I rewarded their belief by promptly changing the station. Jay & The Americans would never let me down.

The things I hate about you

February 22, 2005

It started with the man who fell over the stairwell, an incident that I completely believe was not her fault. But can it be any coincidence that this one event started less than a week after she moved in? That this one event was only the beginning of my late night woes?

Next in line came the incessantly barking dogs. I wanted to kick them, but since I am an animal lover and would never kick an animal (push with my foot, maybe, but never kick), I would have settled for kicking her quite hard. If only she had 'nads. Then she put a nice 'sorry for being so inconsiderate' note on the door and I felt a smidge bad for being so angry with her.

She cannot seem to figure out how to park her vehicle. There are four parking spots in front of our four-plex, each with their own bright green painted log marking each spot. One spot per apartment. It's not that difficult to figure out. B and I park 2 deep, but still behind our one designated bright green log. A few different times we have come home to find her half in our spot and half in hers.

And her car is constantly leaking. Oil, coolant, power steering fluid, blood, guts, plasma, liters at a time. Anything and everything that could possibly leak out of a vehicle is collecting in a nice large pool that is her parking space. I hope the landlords have seen it.

Then Sunday night I went to bed around 11.30p and heard the washer and dryer still running. The cut-off time for laundry is 10.30. I love this cut-off time because both machines sit along a wall shared with my bedroom, making for very difficult sleep. I did what I normally do when a neighbor has let their laundry run a bit long: I stopped both machines, and put a note asking that she not do laundry after 10.30.

Ten minutes later, I hear the machines start back up. Again I stopped the machines, but this time I pulled the blanket from the washer dripping wet and plopped it into the dirty tub sink, and pulled the damp whites from the dryer and tossed them onto the counter. I replaced the note.

Fifteen minutes, and the machines start up again. Ohnoshed'nt. B and I brainstormed what else we could do to keep her from running those awfully loud machines. B went upstairs to talk to her about it and found her sitting at the top of the stairs smoking. In a no smoking machine. Blah blah dog peed on blanket whine whine didn't know it was late. So I called the landlords.

Yes, I tattled.

I can handle laundry being done a little after 10.30, but (now midnight), she was pushing that too much. I had to be at work the next morning. I can also put up with an attitude of, "My being inconvenienced is worth me inconveniencing you." What I cannot and will not handle is smoke in the building.

I find myself thinking of ways to inconvenience her: let Lacey run to the top of the stairs and sniff under her door, barking and causing her dogs to bark, when I get up at 7am; keying the side of her awfully leaky car; put nasty notes under her door and on her car; parking as close to her car as I possibly can, rendering the driver door useless.

Okay, so I haven't gotten far or creative with the revenge ideas. But at least the few ones I have make me happier.

Screw you guys

February 21, 2005

Just like that, I'm going home.

My supervisor is back from a week on the beaches of Mehiko and rather than rubbing it in my face all day, she is heaping great amounts of pity on me and insisting I spend the rest of this President's Linens All On Sale Half Price Day with my loved ones, who had this day off from the start.

Even the dog knew that she didn't have to get up this morning and crawled back under the covers after her morning deed to snuggle with B.


The selfish and nasty one

February 18, 2005

Now that I have experienced grief - no, wait. One does not simply "experience" grief.

Grief is like a rude, smelly, ugly, and abusive guy who shows up on your couch one morning and will not leave. You wonder where he came from and plead with him to leave.

Get outside, enjoy the fresh air. Surely you have frie... er, family who would feel obligated to help you. You make threats of calling the cops, but he knows you won't.

Instead he sinks further into the couch and becomes one with the remote. He has wild mood swings between lethargy and destructive anger.

Destroying is divine. He throws vases against the wall, kicks the dog, and pushes your wife. He gets his truck stuck in your lawn and blows out your Bose surround sound system at 3am. He drinks, always, and yells at your kids.

You come to hate him, despise him, plot his death in the early mornings. But at the same time you just don't have the energy for a fight. And a part of you, a very small part, is afraid of what will happen if he leaves. Is afraid you will not know how to function.

I have lived with Grief, the selfish and nasty one, and I have survived.

Even though Grief is gone, it is always lurking around the corner waiting for the perfect moment to strike. And strike it does, utilizing every element of surprise and strength it can gather. Which is a lot.

It's not a longing for a lost love, and old, happened-some-time-ago grief that is eloquently written about. It hits with full force, and I am left feeling the same way I felt when I found out she died.

I must learn and understand that, though gone, this abusive house guest will still come over for dinner once in a blue moon and break a couple of plates against the wall.

But I also must learn that this guest will leave shortly after arriving. And at least he's off the couch.

Dark Tower

February 17, 2005

So, B came home Tuesday with The Dark Tower, the seventh book in the Dark Tower series? The last book of the Dark Tower series? So, yeah. I'll be back with full force when I finish it. Give me another few days, Monday at the latest.

<h1> spam

February 15, 2005

I have been getting a bunch of comment spam lately that does not include any URLs. There is an email address and a name associated with the comment; the text is wrapped in a first level heading tag and reads like an introduction to a gaggle of spam URLs.

How useful is this? Is a spammer testing the waters? A new spammer who forgot to add in the spam URL?

Call your wife, quickly

February 14, 2005

Call your wife, quickly
Originally uploaded by sThig.

Happy Valentine's Day.

Take a nap

February 13, 2005

Sunday afternoons are made for two hour family naps.

How much better when the naps bring dreams.

As I sit upon a rock

February 12, 2005
As I sit upon a rock
in my favorite sitting spot,
birds call and children play
but I am oblivious to them
as my soul is whisked away.
Wood smoke curls through the air,
I feel winter's icy stare,
but on this day I do not care.

by my 11-year-old niece

And thanks to my brother in Anchorage suggesting I try some hot cocoa, I may actually get a few more hours of sleep.

Bark Bark Bark

February 12, 2005

Bark bark bark.
Barkbark bark bark.

It started with a whine, oh so sad, like he had been woken from a dream, or had his girlfriend dump him, on Valentine's weekend no less.

It slowly progressed to barking, and now there are either two dogs upstairs, or he is able to bark in surround sound just to piss me off.

Yes, it is almost 4am.
B has to be at work at 7am.
Just over three hours in the future.
And the barking.

The lady who just moved in a few weeks ago.
Just before that man put holes in the hallway walls.
And now her dog (dogs?). Will. Not. Stop. Barking.

The kicker?
She isn't even home.
The car isn't here.

I called the landlords, but they live in North Pole, a half hour drive away. Even if they don't warm up their car for very long, it should be another 15 or 20 minutes before they show.

I've made B move to the couch because the dog is barking in her bedroom upstairs, directly above our bed.

I've made Lacey lay on my lap with her head on my arm as I type with her ears in full-attention mode, because, can't you hear it? Doesn't he know that it's time to be under the warm covers drooling on your owner's foot? Please can you fix it?

Barkbarkbark. Bark.

I am not happy.

Negative Zero

February 10, 2005

Negatve zero degrees

I have seen this a few times this winter, not just on my site. The time and temperature recording has said "negative zero degrees" before.

Perhaps -0.04 degrees, rounded to the nearest tenth?
Zero degrees and falling?
It feels colder than yesterday's zero?
Is negative zero slightly colder than positive zero?

Wednesday Dump

February 9, 2005
  • I hate being able to figure out the entire storyline of a movie within the first 20 minutes, though it is a good indicator that I will probably not like one moment of it.
  • While definitely not at the top of my list of favorite fonts, I am coming to abhor the Arial capital letter K. The other letters are passable on their own, but the K is unnecessarily wide and top-heavy.
  • I have 184 Rammstein MP3s from 24 albums; that is every album they have ever put out, including the singles and remixes. I don't like Rammstein that much.

Newsboys Concert

February 8, 2005

The Newsboys.

It left me with a huge grin all night long.
Those Newsboys are good (2.5MB .avi file).


February 7, 2005

2:00 Sunday morning

I woke to a huge KA-BOOM! in the apartment. The dog in the apartment directly above us barked a few times, and Lacey barked more out of frustration that she was awoken than the possibility of burglars in her territory.

Miniature Schnauzer ≠ guard dog.

I sat up and listened for a bit. There was a commotion upstairs, and I assumed (oh so wrongly) that something in the upstairs apartment had fallen over. Something really big. Like their refrigerator. It seemed rational enough to my mind at 2am, so I tried to go back to sleep, when the dog upstairs started whining that horrid I-just-want-to-sleep-in-your-bed why-don't-you-love-me whine.

Lacey wanted to jump up and tell that dog,"Hey! There's this awesome warm water bed down here! Please don't cry!" But I shoved her under the blankets and kept my hand moving (somewhat) over her head.

When I dragged myself from my warm-n-comfy water bed, I found my mirror - my giant three foot square framed mirror - not hanging on the wall as I left it, but instead laying face down on the floor, unbroken. So that is what that big boom was. This large mirror that I love, the mirror that has been solidly connected to our wall for two years straight, jumped off the wall, hit a side table, and fell unconscious to the floor.

Not quite. I started to take the dog out for her morning elimination and was greeted in the hallway by some nice holes in the walls.

One hole on the wall across from our door was about 6 inches in diameter, the other was on our apartment wall and was about 18 inches in diameter.

Upon further inspection, there was a nice black stripe down the wall from the stairs. A stripe that strongly resembles a sneaker scuff mark.

Talking with the landlord confirmed our suspicions: a large man somehow fell over the stair banister, landing with his foot in one wall and his head in the other wall. In our wall, directly behind where our mirror hung. No wonder the mirror fell.

I am guessing that he was inebriated. Not many people would 'accidentally' fall over the banister from the second level and laugh about it, refusing medical care.

While he lay outside my door, his foot in one wall and his head in another, the front door lay wide open. Both of the upstairs apartments adamantly refuse that this man had been visiting them, and this morning I noticed a broken piece of a credit card lying on the floor by the front door.

Perhaps he broke in. Perhaps he was visiting someone upstairs who doesn't want to get themselves in trouble. Perhaps he was drinking. Perhaps he was pushed. We will never know because he didn't stick around long enough to give anyone his phone number.

At least this won't be happening every Sunday.
I hope.

With Class and Style

February 6, 2005

We headed to the Regency Hotel last night just before 8pm for a cozy dinner with 18 others in celebration of a friend's birthday. The original reservations at another restaurant had fallen through.

When we asked the lady at the Regency who took our reservation if they would have a table for 18, she was caught off guard, but promtly assured us everything would be fine.

We milled around by the bar for a while waiting for someone to show us to our table, to show us that there was a table for 18 waiting for us, a table that we could not see in the dining area. The hostess informed us that we had our own private room, and to please follow her.

She led us through the dining area, out the back door by the kitchen, down a hallway with numbered doors, and into room #47.

They had set up three large folding tables in the middle of the hotel room and covered them in large, peach-colored sheets.

We had a kitchenette that worked (one brave soul tried it), a few cupboards filled with clean dishes, a sink filled with dirty dishes, a refrigerator that smelled like something had died in it, a file cabinet bolted in the corner, a television without a remote, and a moldy poo-stained bathroom.



February 4, 2005

The ice fog is so pretty, floating for a half mile underneath cloudless skies. The sun shines through it making the entire town look as though it were a dream sequence in a sappy movie.

When the ice fog dissipates in the afternoons, the sky is a much more vibrant blue than I can ever recall seeing. It reminds me that even though life in Alaska is quite intense at times, it never ceases to be beautiful.

Which makes me sad that I have still not brought long underwear to work with me. I cannot walk around outside and take pictures without a thermal layer, leaving me to depend on my car window sill opening at -40°F so I and my camera can lean out of it on my lunch break.

I can only hope that the skies remain cloudless through the weekend.

Selling it

February 3, 2005
In case the image has yet to fully hit you over the head with a giant stick of what the fuck, let me write this sentence: it's a pterodactyl, with state abbreviations scattered across his body. And he wants to help you find a lower mortgage rate... This dude isn't looking to help you save money! He's flying around LOOKING FOR PREY. He will fucking ERASE you!

Que Sera Sera

Emotional detachment

February 1, 2005

I would never become emotional over a movie. Yes, of course I would laugh, but that was the extend of my emotional attachment.

I could watch someone walk through the killing fields of Cambodia while eating french fries, aliens turning into demons murder death kill and scoff at the cheesy background music, baby puppies be tortured an not drop a tear. I was cold. I was heartless. I had no problem with it.

"But Valette," you are thinking to yourself, "I have taken a grammar class or two in my life and notice that you are using the past tense. What's the dealio, yo?"

Indeed, my emotional detachment to movies is completely a thing of the past. Now? Now I flinch. I cry. I get nightmares. I get really ticked off and call the characters names. Bad names. Out loud.

And movies were just the beginning. I get emotionally involved in television shows. Sitcoms. Law & Order. Mr. Rogers. You name it, I have probably had an emotional outburst because of it. I cannot even count any more the number of books that I should not have finished because they left me with heaving sobs and a shroud of depression.

I could blame it on hormones, or reaching my tolerance level, or not living daily in a situation where I needed to control and guard my every response, but that would not be quite right.

No, it started when she died.

I identify with the characters and mirror my relationship with her every chance I get. The girl who died on screen? Melissa. The coach that had to helplessly watch her die? Me. The boy that imitated his older brother every chance he got? That was us. Torturing puppies is perhaps the biggest unjust thing that could ever possibly happen. She died at 18; how could that be just?

Every thing that goes wrong in this world of 'entertainment' only reminds me of the hole she left in my life. Reminds me of the years I have spent with a throat raw from crying. Reminds me of the amount of pain that life is capable of dealing. Reminds me that other people have already gone through it and even more will soon go through it.

And sometimes I cannot take it any more.

How much longer will I relate everything to her short life and premature death?
How much longer will I suffer through the grieving process?
How much longer will I need her?

On spam

February 1, 2005
...almost every time I sit down to do something creative on my own site, I have to spend half an hour pulling someone else's pubic hairs out of the plug first.

Best quote on weblog spam ever.
By Anna at

Birthday billiards

February 1, 2005

Birthday billiards bonanza.
In photos.

Additional Content

Hi, I'm Valette

I'm a photographer based out of Anchorage, Alaska. I've recently become a wife, a stepmother, and a homeowner. Life is pretty awesome. You can email me anytime. Learn more...

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