Friday, February 26, 2010

Olympic Installment Interruption

We now interupt our regularly scheduled Olympic Broadcast to go to the Fur Rondy in Anchorage. Our regularly scheduled program will continue Sunday night-ish. Google Fur Rondy, I don't have time to post a link. Gotta get going, burnin' daylight. Is there anything better than being on the road on a Friday, headed into a weekend trip?

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Speaking of Reputations...

Mine was ruined long ago so here's the real skinny on my trip:

If there were a gold medal in patio beer drinking, I think I would've been a serious contender.
How could anyone resist with the sun shining and a temperature of about 50 degrees?

Whenever we got a table in the sun, I'd be in my t-shirt, laughing at everyone in their snow gear. Wimps. But, the competition was fierce. Back off Austria, this is not the World Beard and Mustache Championships. This is serious.

I beg to differ, Brewhouse. USA! USA! USA!

And the views from every patio, whether it be a chalet, an amazing mountain peak or a bunch of good looking athletes, were stimulating.

And the medal goes to....
Kokanee... sometimes you gotta take one for the team. And when you're going for gold, you make sacrifices. It's all part of being a serious athlete.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

A Reputation to Uphold

Many people were wearing/displaying their country's flag as a sign of support and patriotism, which I completely understand. However, there are Do's and Don'ts to displaying your country's flag. Sadly, it was mostly the Americans that missed that memo.

High and proud? Do.

P.S. Onstage is the Canadian musician I met the next day when Jessie Rae told him I was a huge fan. He hugged me. Chest level, of course. And gave me a bookmark. Look him up on Itunes, Kuba Oms. I forgot to tell him that JR and I decided he'd be the perfect frontman to bring back the tambourine. Seriously, he could do it.

Dirty, ripped beer napkin? Don't.

The breeze wasn't cooperating but the guy on the right had a big hole in his flag and both Brad and Chad obviously allowed them to drag on the ground.

Then there were the roving bands of frat boy idiots.

Why, people? Isn't America's reputation tarnished enough? It seems whenever there was a ruckus we could always count on turning to see some of our "finest" HeyBros doing their best to make sure it'll always stay that way. I discussed this with a German gentleman and his conclusion, paraphrased, is that I just perceive things to be that way because I'm American and the embarrassing comments stick out more. He said Germans are disliked in Europe but loved all over the rest of the world but he feels he pays more attention to the negative comments. No disrespect to Deutschland, just repeating what I was told.

Anyhow, what do you think about lack of Flag Etiquette? Disgrace, over reaction, non-issue?
In an international setting such as the Olympics, I would've liked to have seen our citizens show a bit more respect for our flag. It's no coincidence, of course, that the perpetrators were all young, dumb and full of fun. Everyday I'm just a little bit happier to be past my 20's.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Olympic Instalment #1

Oh where to start, what to tell you? The trip to Whistler is a long one. One flight to Anchorage on a nine seater (eek!), one flight to Seattle, one to Vancouver, snarky border guards and then a two hour drive up to the mountains. I knew this time not to expect any smiles or even the slightest suggestion of friendliness from those surly border folk. My friend got harassed for looking the wrong direction and my "lady" was not impressed with my "fly by the seat of my pants" mentality. No tickets? Don't know the name of your hotel? You must be a moron and we will treat you like one.
But, Mr. Ritter had arranged a car service for us and that was a nice experience, especially on the way home when we got to see the Sea to Sky Highway during the day. And also because I got to feel like a baller when we stopped at the gas station and were witnessed getting out of a town car with an actual driver. Because all ballers stop at Petro Canada for their souvenir shopping. Big pimpin, spendin' G's. Ok, I don't think my brain is working well enough to continue writing right now. Off to bed and I'll do another installment tomorrow after a little more sleep. For now I'll just say it was an amazing weekend and I'm a very lucky person.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Please Hold

All of our customer service agents are busy at the 2010 Winter Olympics is Whistler, Canada. Your estimated wait time is one week. Please enjoy the music and feel free to leave comments, as your customer service agent is beginning to feel there is no one on the line.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Queen of Hearts

Long ago and far away I began a scrapbook, probably for Valentine's Day. But things change and then you edit. Can you tell there used to be a few more letters and an "and" in there? Man, I kill me.
This Valentine's Day, I'm happy to be the Queen of my heart and as free as I can be. I'm also happy to have a working heart and amazing people to share it with.Happy Heart's Day. I hope your heart is happy.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Go For the Gold

I watched the opening ceremony last night and now I'm ready to go! We're still not sure if we can get in to any events, tickets are up to $350 for the unpopular ones and security, I'm sure, is tight. I've never been arrested before and it's sort of on my Bucket List, but now is not the time. I'll have to turn on the shmooze and keep my ears open, but it's enough for me to have a great week in Whistler with my best good friend Jessie Rae and her sidekick Mr. Ritter, no relation to John.
My favorite parts of the opening were the swimming whales because it was shocking to see them look so real and because I've now been lucky enough to see them in real life, and k.d. lang singing Leonard Cohen's Hallelujah. Beautiful.
What was yours?
My new goal for the trip is to find that Shaun White, hold him down and give him a buzz cut. What is with the bad Olympian hair? Apollo, shave that shit! Oh no is right! And that chick with the frizzy blonde ramen hair and bright lipstick? I guess they can't all be perfect but can't they have a stylist on board?

V-day tomorrow. Sorry, I couldn't make it to Wal-Mart but wherever you are, picture a gigantic basket covered in cellophane, full of cheap chocolate and an annoying, white teddy bear. Nothing says I love you like useless crap.

Thursday, February 11, 2010


"A pioneer of oil refining in Alaska, Tesoro Alaska is a regional oil refinery and refined petroleum products marketing unit of Tesoro Corporation. The unit manages Tesoro Corporation's and Alaska's first oil refinery, at Kenai. The 72,000 barrels-a-day refinery produces gasoline, liquefied petroleum gas, heavy oils, bunker fuels, and liquid asphalt, as well as distillates (jet fuel, diesel fuel, and heating oil). The plant's primary product is jet fuel for Anchorage International Airport, located 70 miles from the refinery. A 40,000-barrels-per-day pipeline connects the refinery with the airport. The Kenai refinery also supplies gasoline and diesel to about 90 Tesoro-branded retail outlets in Alaska." (citation)
So why the F am I paying $3.59/gallon here when it's $2.85 in San Francisco? We get to enjoy the paranoid thoughts that accompany a jet fuel plant in your backyard, as well as the eyesore, but none of the benefits. Unless you count cancer and three-eyed babies because I'm pretty sure it's only a matter of time before an Erin Brockovich movie is made about this place. It's pretty creepy the way ConocoPhillips sponsors all the Little Leagues and puts on these huge company picnics. Maybe there's nothing to worry about but I can't help but wonder, what are the environmental effects of these refineries?
Note to self: Go purchase a replacement filter for your Brita already!

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

The Thrill of the Fight

In an email thread between the Fantastic Four and a few life partners, the older sibs and I were debating family political slants and little sister's inability to "Name That Band" when this came up:

Thank you, She Who Is Freakishly Obsessed With All Things Fashion Related. (Her current crush is Native American motif so I thought I'd give her an Indian name.)
Now I'm cracking up because I'm picturing myself getting ready for SLP battle every morning with this song blaring. Flascards? Check. Stickers? Check. Dry Erase pens? Check. Hand sanitizer? You bet your ass, sister. Just risin' up to the challenge of my rival.
Can you tell I have something I should be doing, like studying for a job interview?


I ended up going to Anchorage last weekend for part of the SpEd conference and am very happy with my decision. Not only did I get the most kick ass pair of boots, but I went to a really inspiring presentation. The speaker was Jennifer White, director of a company called Able Opportunities. As far as I can gather, because I'm really bad at paying attention to details, her company helps people with disabilities succeed in their environments. Educationally, occupationally, whatever's needed. Actually it's probably more like she teaches the morons in the individual's environment to recognize their abilities and get out of the way of their success. And by morons I mean the very well intentioned, able bodied people who can't really comprehend the world in any way other than their way. Of which I'm one, so don't go getting all offended.
She told the story about a deaf/blind woman the company consulted with to help employ at a hospital. This woman made it her job to put together surgical kits and even modified some of the tubing and such to the surgeon's specifications. Trust me, when you have 8-10 inches of hard plastic tubing being ripped out of body, you really wish someone had taken the time to trim that shit down. Anyhow, when her job was finally outsourced, four departments in the hospital recruited her. Now that's a success story.
The presentation made me think a lot about language therapy tasks for adults with aphasia and also about my friends from BORP (Bay Area Outreach Recreation Program) and how much practice you need to think of the world outside of your own experiences.
So, a weekend well spent, not to mention that I got to go to a cheap theater that serves pizza and beer. Heaven! Saw The Road, pretty damn depressing movie although the kid annoyed the crap out of me. "MAN UP!" That's all I kept thinking. I think maybe they cast the wrong aged kid. That, and I'm a cold hearted bitch with a lump of coal in my chest. Had we established that fact yet?
The BOOTS! They're perfect, like the holy grail for me really. Flats with a round toe, fit like a glove and even though they're tall, they don't flop around my stick legs like a pair of galoshes. Oh yeah!
Oh goodness, I almost forgot the Bacon of the Month. Seawick and I (my friend who I met off the internet and in person one time but still offered up his house for me to stay at and is not a rapist, weirdo or freak) went to dinner at Spenard's Roadhouse and they have a Bacon of the Month. Carmalized bacon with, wait for it.... chocolate sauce. So good. So, so good. Now I'm wondering if I can get back every month. Hmmm, Deep Thoughts, by Jack Handey.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Another One Bites The Dust

I know, I know. I have been remiss. I don't remember the last time I posted but I know it's been awhile. It seems a lot has happened in a very short time.
It finally happened, grandpa #2 has kicked the old bucket. It's a sore subject and was a long time comin' so let's just leave it at that.
I took an auto maintenance class at a local mechanics shop. A woman technician basically took 6 of us (all women) around a car and explained things no one else has ever bothered to. It was so much info, my brain stopped absorbing. But fun and interesting and that shop will have my business until the day I drag up out of this place.
I fell and cracked my head on the ice. I've feared doing this all winter and now that I did, I finally picked up some cleats. They're sitting in the bag in the back of my truck. No Natasha Richardson here though, aside from a two day headache, I turned out all right. Or at least as well as can be expected. Pretty sure all the brain injuries of the past have already taken their toll. It's funny how a simple sentence like "I hit my head." can bring such violent reactions from people, especially speech pathologists.
What else? I finally turned in my application to the hospital and am awaiting an interview. I'm pretty excited at the prospect of working with adults again but trying not to get my hopes up.
OH! The U.S. government says I am proficient in basic math and alphabetizing skills. I passed my census test with a 98% . The background check may or may not have been as definitive, depending on how deep they dug but I passed. So there's always that.
This weekend I'm going to a Special Education conference in Anchorage. My plane tickets to he 2010 Winter Olympics are purchased. The SAD has tried to make a comeback, but I am savvy now. Music, exercise and friends. I'm back to the exercise after busting out of my pants yesterday. Tonight was pilates and I think I've found the perfect workout for my lame, problematic, noodley, bony body.
No kids for the rest of the week!! I love parent/teacher conference days. Only because I'm not a teacher, I know it's hell for them.
Over 'n out.