Saturday, June 28, 2008


Seriously, this is true. The only way to get to the main menu of PayPal without telling them any account information is to scream FUCK really loudly. I've heard that screaming FUCK to the machines that answer customer service phones works well, but I have never been irritated enough to try it. And usually I can figure out where I want to go.

But not with stupid PayPal! So here's what you do. Wait for the woman to talk, then scream "FUCK!" at her, and it will cause her to say, "Main Menu". NOTHING ELSE will cause her to say "Main Menu", so I have just saved you a lot of time and aggravation. You're welcome.

Friday, June 27, 2008

One of the side effects of transatlantic travel

Or just travel, I guess? Anyway, being away from here.

Because in England, as I mentioned once or twice, it never rained that hard, and it never thundered. Ever. There were three minutes of thundering the entire time I was in England. Here, of course, it rains a lot, so I should have adjusted by now, considering I've been back in America for an entire year. And lately, the rain's been a great big pain in the ass, and I've been not able to swim because of all the raining that's been happening, which means that I am just being a lazy lazy bum.

Anyway, because of that time I was in England for nine months with no rain, every time it rains now, I feel this tremendous urge to look at it and tell someone. I mean it. Every time it rains at all hard. The rain starts pouring down, I spot it out the window and I'm like "WOW. WOW. WOW" and then I have to repress the urge to call everyone I know and be like, "Oh my God you will never guess what has happened! ... No, nothing about Bush ... No, my family's fine ... NO! STOP GUESSING! I WILL TELL YOU! IT IS RAINING!"

(I do miss England, though.)

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Inarguably reasonable

No. I know I've said this before but I really mean it this time. I am reasonably cranky and no reasonable person can think otherwise.

I went to the library, and I really wanted to get a couple of Martin Millar's other books, because Neil Gaiman says glowing things about Martin Millar, and I quite enjoyed The Good Fairies of New York (it was charming, and I would like to read it again), so I looked him up and found that only one other of his books is at the library. Which was a little sad, and I felt sad, but I also appreciate that a library has a limited budget and cannot be expected to have all the books that every author has written who is liked by Neil Gaiman.

Goddamn book wasn't there, and neither was the damn Good Fairies one which I wanted to reread. I searched and searched and searched. I searched under Millar; and then, because Millar is a weird spelling, I searched extensively under Miller; and then, because Martin can also be a last name, I searched under Martin. I searched under paperback, and I searched under young adults, and I searched under young adult paperback. I searched under romance, which I am pretty sure Lonely Werewolf Girl is not, and I searched under graphic novels, which it is also not, and I searched under fantasy/sci-fi, and all of this searching was wholly fruitless. So instead of reading that, I read The Interloper.

Which was, frankly, kinda creepy.

And now instead of being curled up in bed halfway through Lonely Werewolf Girl, I am sitting here, finished with and kinda creeped out and dismayed by The Interloper, typing a cranky blog post about the failure of either me as a searcher or one or more library employees as shelvers. Besides which, if I'm being honest, I feel annoyed with Martin Millar for having a name that is one letter away from being an extremely ordinary name, thereby making finding his books unnecessarily difficult. You know what, Martin Millar? I don't care if this does force me to use the Unreasonable Crankiness tag also! Your name is very trying! You should just - you should either get a name that is properly distinguishable from other people's, like Vladimir Nabokov or hell, like Neil Gaiman, or you should spell your very-close-to-ordinary name the ordinary way so that nobody will get confused and lose track of your books. So there.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

This is very, very funny to me.

Daddy: *song about a dude dying*

Kate: *applause*

Daddy: Another death song! *song about a dude killing someone and going to jail*

Kate: *applause*

Daddy: *One Friday Morn*

Kate: *silence*
Kate, really sadly: I - I really thought the ship wasn't going to sink.

Daddy and Robyn and Jenny: Hahahahahahahahahaha

Daddy: What in all your years of experience with us and our songs would lead you to believe that?

Kate: They - they all seemed so determined! And it was a gallant ship!

Daddy and Robyn and Jenny: *reflective silence*

Daddy: *song about the apocalypse*

You know why I like Benedick?

I will tell you. It’s not because his name is Benedick – why is his name Benedick? – and it’s not because he’s BFF with dopey Claudio. It’s not even because he’s friends with Don Pedro, and I like Don Pedro, partly because Denzel Washington is so handsome and upright and nice in the role. It’s because he totally listens to Beatrice and trusts that her instincts are right.

I mean, the situation’s not really conducive. Everyone in town’s just been witness to the knock-down-drag-out-looks-not-like-a-nuptial fight that Claudio decided to pick AT THE ALTAR (he’s such a dope, no wonder I hated Robert Sean Leonard for so long), Beatrice is all upset and screamy, Leonato may actually have lost his mind, Hero’s off to go play dead, and Benedick has, rather graciously I think, stuck around through all this screamy fighting when any normal person who was not actually a blood relation would have slunk off long ago and gone home to gossip about that wacky governor’s family. And like, Beatrice is pretty great when he’s all dude I totally love you and she’s like So do something about it (I actually really like it when she says, Use it for my love some other way than swearing by it). But she’s asking him to challenge Claudio to a duel. A duel to defend the honor of a girl that not one but both of his BFFs swear they saw having sex with another guy. And yes, okay, Benedick has mentioned that their wisdoms could have been misled by John the Bastard, but a lot of people don’t seem convinced by that argument.

Anyway, the point is, he says, “Okay, look. Think you in your soul that Claudio hath wronged Hero?” and she says, “Seriously, yes,” and then he’s like, “Okay. I’m on it.” And hey. Wow. That’s some serious trust for her judgment he’s got there.

On the other hand, if she’d been wrong, he’d have killed his best friend just cause his new girlfriend said to. So there’s that to consider.

Monday, June 16, 2008



It is someone in my family's phone, because the noise is coming from my living room. And it's very disruptive. I sit down at the computer desk all writey-brain and earnest, and I type for a little while, and then Bdoobdoobdoo goes something in the living room. Since it's obviously a phone alerting me to the fact that a call has been missed, I go into the living room and try to find the stupid thing and track it down by its bdoobdoobdoo, which of course by now has ceased. But I'm tenacious, and I don't want anyone missing calls, or losing a phone, so I hunt all over the living room trying to find the stupid thing and hoping it's going to make the noise again and clue me in to its approximate location.


So off I trot back to the computer and sit down all writey-brain and earnest once again, and I swear to God the phone knows when I have done this because it immediately goes bdoobdoobdoo again, and because I CANNOT LEAVE RINGING PHONES ALONE I go running back into the living room to try and find it again.

But with a less firm grip on my sanity this time.

This time I'm all Where are you phone? and Speak again bright angel but OF COURSE IT WILL NOT so because I'm tenacious as previously mentioned and I (ohforGod'ssakeitjusthappenedagain and IlookedandIlookedalloveragainandit'snowhere) keep searching but the phone is not anywhere, and I look down the sides of the new recliner and I shake up all the sofa cushions that my mother has fluffed all pretty earlier today because darling tim! is coming! to visit!, and I find a pair of my pants that somebody has inexplicably hidden there but no phone, and I fling magazines about searching even though I know I'm just making my life difficult and I will have to clean up again or else explain to tim that the reason the house is so messy is that THERE WAS A PHONE A PHONE A PHONE and I could not escape from its hateful bdoobdoobdoo noises

And I actually sat down in the stupid living room and read a book for twenty minutes because I was hoping the phone would do the noise BUT IT DID NOT, and SOMEBODY IS CALLING US RIGHT NOW and THEY CANNOT GET THROUGH and WHAT IF THE ONLY NUMBER THEY HAVE IS THAT PHONE NUMBER AND SOMETHING REALLY TERRIBLE HAS HAPPENED?

I need to go do some diaphwagmatic bweathing.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

This will not be funny in ten years

So I was at the movie theatre last night (seeing Kung Fu Panda, which surprised me by being sweet and charming and nice even though I hate Jack Black), and there was a couple there withtheir small child. She was probably two or three at the oldest, because she was saying words but she was also babbling nonsense a lot. And whatever, she was being bad, whining and wanting to go home, and they were doing that fierce whispering thing that parents do whose little children are misbehaving in public places, you know, the little girl was throwing popcorn around, the mother was hissing at her to sit down and behave, all that jazz. It was annoying.

Well, the little girl kept being bad, and for a minute they were all totally quiet and then the mother says, not in a whisper, but in a very quiet sob-infused voice voice, “I don’t know what you want from me. I have done everything that I can do for you.”

Seriously, lady? The kid’s barely old enough to construct a complex sentence. I think you’re going to want to wait a little bit longer before she’s going to be able to benefit by Better Parenting Through Guilt™.

P.S. This story is only funny because the child is two. When the child is old enough to comprehend guilt, it will not be funny at all, but tragic.

Saturday, June 7, 2008

Charlie the Hermaphrodite Bear

Once, in choir class, this girl Eleanor had a little picture of a bear (called Charlie), and it was a contest, you know, you made a copy of the picture of Charlie and you sent it off to the place, and if it was the best one you would win a prize. We couldn't figure Charlie out, though. Charlie did not look like a boy bear, as the name would imply, nor did s/he look exactly like a girl bear called Charlotte and cutely nicknamed. We called it Charlie the Hermaphrodite Bear and made up a little song of its name.

I bring this up because I'd forgotten all about Charlie until today, because today I saw a bear that was far more disturbing. I took a picture of it on my cell phone, but it wasn't very good and plus I have no idea how to transfer pictures from my camera to my computer. But basically at the mall, on the first floor, there's this nice little play area for children, and on the second floor right above it, you can look down from the balcony place and see the play area. And to remind parents that the play area is just below them, they have these cutesy little wooden cut-outs looking down at the area. There's a little tiny bear peering through the bars down to the lower floor, and then there is also this DEEPLY DISTURBING BEAR.

It's a big tall grown-up bear, right, and its body is pivoted in such a way that it looks like it's been leaning over the railing until you walked up just this second, and it's wearing these really loose overalls and it has one of its hands like really deep inside its pocket, and its face has a goofy guilty look on its face and I swear to God if that bear ever comes to life it will be saying "Whoops! Heh, heh, heh, looks like you caught me masturbating!"

That's why I didn't go to Dillard's to look for a bathing suit. Seriously. I got distracted taking a picture of the bear, and then I didn't want to walk past it, and so I just went off to Macy's instead. The dressing rooms of Macy's were filled with women trying on bathing suits and telling each other how much they hated their bodies - which was pretty sad, actually, and made me yearn for the simpler times when I was trying to decide whether I was enough of a fraidy-cat to actually walk away rather than risk a run-in with a two-dimensional onanistic bear. But I got a cute little green and yellow and white bikini at Macy's, so I guess it was worth it.

Thursday, June 5, 2008

No more of my former nonsense

All this business about not learning to play the guitar. High time I gave that up. So no more. I am learning to play the guitar as of now. So far I more or less know six chords, which are as follows: C (tricky bastard! how dare it be C?), G (always sounds so safe and homey), D (bewilders my fingers but is manageable), Em (easy to transition into from G when I play "I've Just Seen a Face"), Am (which I haven't tried much yet), and A (easy in theory but I can't make it sound pretty).

I say more or less because I have drawn myself a picture of the chords, to remind me. It's a very nice picture - I guess The Internet could make me a better one, but I am content with the one I have.


Wednesday, June 4, 2008


So one of those things I've always assumed without having anything to back it up with, is that I do not like the writers of the Beat Generation. Not really fair of me to make that assumption but still, many of my literature-related assumptions are solid good assumptions, and voila, here is another thing proved quite right.

William Burroughs. Always suspected that I hated him.


So guess what I learned today. William Burroughs shot his wife.

In the head.

Because basically he was in Mexico because he was a-running from The Law, and Joan Vollmer was his common-law wife and whatnot, and they were all drunk and he was all blaaaaaaaaaah let's play William Tell that would be SO AWESOME and she was like blaaaaaaaaah that will be amaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaazing so she put a glass water tumbler on her head and he SHOT HER IN THE HEAD.



....Incidentally, I don't know if you've noticed, but the titles of all these June posts have been really terse. I must be terse today.


I bet you thought I was going to say something about Obama getting the nomination. But I’m not.

(I shot myself in the foot there… What I mean, of course, is that this post is not primarily about the Obama nomination. But since I’ve now wasted several sentences discussing the Obama nomination and how I’m not going to talk about it – this is praeteritio – hi, Cicero, I miss you, baby, and your periodic sentences; whatever happened to us? – I am going to have to say a lot more about my real news item, which is actually very short, in order to stop this post from being primarily about the Obama nomination.)

I made my skeptical sister like The Office. It’s true. Because basically I bought seasons two and three of The Office used, and I’ve been watching them straight through in order to make sure they are scratch-free, and Anna, who enjoys bonding with me while cross-stitching and watching movies or television shows, has been watching it with me. Which means that she now totally cares about what happens. And last night we finished watching the third season, and I mentioned to Anna that if she wanted to start watching the fourth season, we could probably swing it, and Anna gave me a look.

And it was very weird to see that look on her face. I am accustomed to seeing that look on Robyn’s face, when she does not want to stop watching Angel (or Buffy, or The Office, or Felicity, or Gossip Girl – it’s ubiquitous!), and I have felt that look on my face in similar situations, but never ever ever have I seen Anna make that face. I didn’t even know that her face was capable of making that expression.

I won’t lie. It was a happy moment for me.

Also, I miss watching Buffy. I haven't watched Buffy in like. A week. Maybe more. And since I no longer have Angel to prop me up while I wait for the next time I get to watch Buffy, this is actually pretty sad.

(Hm. I forgot about that. Amusing to contemplate the extent to which, as previously mentioned, Angel took over my life, considering that I started watching it only so that I wouldn't go into hardcore Buffy withdrawal and start getting paranoid and throwing up and imagining formaldehyde babies on the ceiling.)

P.S. I just checked. It hasn't been a week. It feels long, but it has actually only been five days. Wow. My life is sad.


I hate it when I dream that something really amazing has happened, and then I wake up and I'm not thinking about the dream but I feel happy because of the amazing thing, and then after a while I think, Oh, yay, this amazing thing has happened, and as soon as I think that I remember that it only happened in my dream and is thus not true. And it's always a huge letdown.

And today was the worst one ever. I dreamed I found my jacket. I wore it all around and shopped in an open-air market. Now I'm extremely sad. No jacket. I miss it so much.