Monthly Archives: May 2006

New Community Blues

I’ve got the new community blues. I’m tired of taking the puppies for walks and seeing ugly construction everywhere. Portia eats whatever the construction workers toss on the ground after their lunch (SLOBS!! There is lunch crap everywhere!!) Their paws get muddy when it rains because not everywhere has grass yet. All the trees are tiny new trees. Parks are incomplete, baseball diamonds aren’t done yet. Pathways go nowhere because they haven’t been finished. Back alleys are a thing of the past. We keep our blinds closed all the time because in new neighboorhoods all backyards touch all other backyards. Plus, small lots. Leave the blinds open and you will likely find yourself nose to nose, staring out your window at your neighboor staring back. Sniff. I got the BLUES!!

I miss the big trees of my parents’ neighboorhood. In the summer, driving up the main road to mum and dad’s place, the trees are so big and the road curves just-so, so that it looks like the tops of the trees bow over and tough each other across the street, like a canopy. There are back alleys that I know so well (from years of riding my bike) and they actually go places. Look out their kitchen window and you can barely make out anyone else’s windows because a) big trees block the view and b) large lots make them far away. My entire house and lot could fit in my parents back yard.

I got the blues. . .

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It’s that special time of year!

Yes kiddies! It’s time to register for the CIBC run for the Cure!! The first Sunday of every October is the day to run/walk for a cure for breast cancer. This will be my 6th year! It’s a great time, and last year we took the dogs too. I even put a breast cancer t-shirt on Portia and she was a big hit. It’s loads of fun, you get bagels and apples, water and juice and you get to raise money for a good cause! If you want to register go to the CBCF website. If you raise enough money in donations, it’s FREE! You heard me right, FREE! I hope to see you there!

Responds well to authority

If I were to be analyzed by a shrink, one of the things that would be on my chart (other than: paranoid- self-doubting egocentric) would be: Responds well to authority. I’ve always had this thing: I must follow the rules! I have to obey! If you are in any sort of position of authority (doctor, police officer, dentist, nail-tech) I will do whatever you tell me.

Case in point: I fear going to my nail tech. I love Amanda dearly and no one does a set of nails like her, but I’m scared everytime I go when I have to show her what I’ve done to her artwork over the last three weeks. She knows I am a habitual filer so she forgives me, but I hate having to turn my hands over to her knowing that the jagged edge on the index, or the raging hangnail on the thumb are all courtesy of me (except I tell Amanda that Evil Margarita did it. Damn Evil Margarita! I’m always apologizing for that bee-yatch!)

Case 2: Going to the hairdress with massive split ends and bad roots. I feel like I must explain that yes, I use the curing iron and flat iron all the time, and no, I didn’t deep condition and yes, I use drugstore shampoo (at this point there is generally a disgusted snort tossed my way).

Same thing at the dentist. I cringe when they say I need to floss more and focus on my gums. I’m a bad flosser! I confess! I’ll talk! I’ll tell you all about the 5 consecutive years I made a new year’s resolution to floss every day! Just turn the hot lights off!

So, it’s true. I’m a yes-man. Or yes-woman as the case may be. I can’t help it! 1. I was raised catholic (stand up and feel guilty – just for old times sake!) and 2. I’m a people pleaser. I want everyone to be happy. And if they’re not, we’ll it’s generally my fault and I feel guilty about it. If I had been the main character in Orwell’s 1984, all they would have had to say was, “Do you see 5 lights?” and I would have said, “Do you want me to see 5 lights?” Book over.


Reluctant Traveller

I like to travel.

Let me clarify that.

I like to see new things and eat foods in far away places and generally look around. But I am a reluctant traveller.

What happens when a type-A, paranoia infused, shy, self-concious girl like me goes travelling? Well, it goes something like this. . . .

A fabulous idea pops in my head. I will go on vacation! Yes! Vacation! Now where to? Hmmm. I will visit Allan! Yes! Allan in Switzerland! Rocking good idea, he speaks French and can order all my food for me! I buy ticket. I get passport renewed. I start to think about what to pack. Day before the journey, I panic! I hate the ‘getting there’ part! I will have to check in 2 hours early. What if my luggage is seized for some insane reason I didn’t know about? Don’t be ridiculous. You’re luggage won’t be seized. Gads! I have a four hour layover in Frankfurt! What am I going to do for four hours! Okay, it’s okay. You will buy a coffee and read a book. Buy a coffee! I don’t speak German!! Breathe, breathe, it’s the airport, they will speak english. OMG, I’m an annoying English speaking person who travels the world assuming that everyone will speak her language. I have to cancel! Cancel! I can’t go! I’m too nervous! Can’t cancel, ticket paid for and non-refundable. What will you tell friends, family, co-workers?? That you bought a ticket to Europe and chickened out? No, must go! Will have good time. Get to Geneva, hang out with Allan. He wants to take 8pm train. Will we make it? No! Of course not! But he has to try! We don’t make it. Decide to take train next morning. Go to small French town. What a pretty sight. Oh no! I have no French Francs! Only have Swiss Francs! Feel guilty mooching off Allan even though I am writing it all down so I can pay him back! Back in Geneva. Hmm should go out. Scared! French not so good! Dammit! Did not come all the way over here to hang out in apartment. Book tour of Lac Leman. Go. Get horrendously lost. Get found. Make bus just in time. Have good time. Learn lots, see lots. Eat crepes on lake side. Book tour of Swiss countryside. Go. Have good time. Learn lots, see lots, have glass of wine. Maybe stay in and watch a movie? No! Go out! Do something! And don’t be afraid to buy lunch! Go to United Nations. Shop. Won’t get lost again, won’t get lost again. Can figure out transit now. Orient self by the Starbucks. You can’t get lost as long as you know where the Starbucks is. Get stuck in rain. See fabulous Swiss garden when sun comes out. Time to go home. GADS AGAIN! Four hour layover in Frankfurt! Four hour layover in Toronto! What to do? What if my luggage gets seized? Where is my passport? Did I forget anything? Okay, okay. Luggage will not get seized. Passport is in front pocket as always. You have your packing list and it is complete. All is fine. Panic, panic. Will be fine. Am going home.

Get home and recollect that I had a fabulous trip! Panic forgotten. Anxiety gone. Pics turned out great. Have cool stories and souvenirs. It’s the same everytime I go somewhere.

Yes, it’s true, I read trash fiction!

So, I figure my brain gets a pretty good workout during the day. I have a job in a field where I don’t actually have a degree (degree = math, job = history) so I figure my noodle is working fairly hard all day. I prefer to write fiction in my spare time, but while I’m on the clock, it’s non-fiction only (spare time = coven full of witches, job = factual responses). So the old noggin is chuggin away.

Which is why when I come home and finally set aside some me time to read, I enjoy easy reads and the occasional good pile of trash!

My name is Margarita, and I am a trash fiction junkie.

I do have some criteria. It must be a fast read. No gigantic sized words that send me running to mirriam-webster. And while I’ll put up with a lot of silly plots, I cannot stand big plot holes. My characters must be charming, relatively intelligent and outrageously fashionable. I read historical [and I use that term quite loosely] romances, contemporary sci fi [once in a while] and I’m a sucker for a gruesome crime novel with a strong female lead. I have my favourite authors and I wait not-so-patiently for their next books to come out, at which point I run down to Chapters, find out that it’s not in the store yet [despite the fact that it was released a week ago] and then run home and order it from amazon.ca [but that’s a whole other blog!]

I will not read a book if it’s currently on Oprah or the ‘it’ book to read. I scoff at ‘it’ books. Da Vinci code, suck it. I’ve no interest in you. You are highly recommended by the general public who I consider to be full of brainless boobs. You did not make the cut. Oprah, you tend to pick books with a ‘deep message’ and frankly, I don’t need you to teach my life lessons. You are off the list.

I fully admit that what I read would generally be considered trash, but I love it. So shut it. At least I can read which is more than I can for some of my age-group.

Gita’s Faves – In no order
1. Kelley Armstrong and her Women of the Underworld Series – Strong heroines, werewolves, witches and snappy dialogue. Love this woman.
2. Charlaine Harris and her Southern Vampires – Mind reader/Bar Waitress Sookie Stackhouse and her vampire friends. A hysterical series. Love it.
3. Tess Gerritsen – Well written, thought out crime novels. Good characters. Page turner every time.
5. Kim Harrison – These ones are only for you if you like more fantasy stuff like fairies and elves, only they live in today’s world. Entertaining reads.
6. Kay Hooper – For all you fans of psychics, esp and the paranormal. Her earlier stuff has less of it and is fabulous too. I recommend ‘Finding Laura.’
7. Jayne Anne Krentz/Amanda Quick – Same author, different names. One for contemporary romance, one for historical. Her books are all pretty similar, but hey, if it ain’t broke. . .
8. Laurel K. Hamilton – This one comes with a disclaimer. Stop after Blue Moon. It goes downhill from there. Don’t be tempted by misleading synopses. Anita will never choose between Jean-Claude and Richard. She’ll only add more boy-toys to the mix and you’ll be disgusted with her.
9. Iris Johansen – Reliable Author. Good plots. Good characters.
10. Christina Dodd – Romance Novels
11. Lisa Kleypas – Romance Novels

You are what you eat! aka: I’m a bad mummy

So, Porita and Rocky graduated sometime ago from sleeping in their luxury sized kennels to sleeping anywhere they want to in the house. Rocky will only sleep in Jenge’s bed, and apparently, sleeps like the dead. Which if you know him, is quite funny since we can’t get him to slow down or shut up for the other 18 hrs of the day.

Portia, free spirit that she is, prefers to roam the house. I leave my door open so she can come and go as she pleases. Sometimes she pops up onto my bed, generally choosing to sleep dead center of the mattress. I swear, she must have a little, itty-bitty doggie measuring tape that lets her know where the exact center is. But I digress. . .

On a walk, Portia has been known to pick up whatever tickles her fancy and eat it. Other than totally grossing me out, this generally is not a problem. However, over the last couple of weeks I have learned a few things:
1. Peach pits will not go out the back end. They must come back out the way they went in.
2. Ditto for Starbucks straws.
3. Ditto for plastic wrap.
4. Ditto for large pieces of wood.
5. Ditto for tupperwear
6. Ditto for whatever it was I cleaned up Sunday morning – I didn’t want to look that close!! EW!

What makes me a bad mother is that I’m too squeamish to reach into her jaws and yank it out while she’s chewing on it. I mean, I don’t know where that has been! Yuck! What makes me a worse mother is that I, like Rocky, sleep like the dead. I wake up like the dead too. Zoned out, cranky and hungry. The last two times I heard her getting sick in the night beside my bed I was like, “Noooooooooooooooo. Sigh. I’ll get it tomorrow.” Roll over, snort, fall back asleep. Oxy Clean is my new best friend. It really does work like in the commercials. I have found little Portia presents all over the house.

Honestly, sometimes I think she’s got no brains! As for stuff that has made it out the other side:
1. Tub of margarine and tub of sour cream, simultaneously consumed.
2. Package of Tim Horton’s butter
3. Package of ketchup from fast food restaurant
4. Pieces of blanket
5. Pieces of rubber bone
6. Dog hair (we groomed Rocky and she ran off and ate all the fur we freed from him)
7. Rubber band (this one is a personal favourite of Portia’s)
8. Pieces of shoes
9. Scented Candles
10. Puzzle pieces (as I found out after assembling a 748 piece puzzle. Dammit! Two pieces short! Four pieces in the puzzle were already mangled by slobber and teeth)
11. Yarn/String/thread – Go ask Jenge how this was extracted. She took the prize for Mummy of the year that day. Too bad she’s scarred for life!

Stuff I have snatched from the ‘Jaws of Death’:
1. Razor
2. Nail clippers
3. Knives (she loves the handles)
4. The rest of the shoes
5. Spoons
6. Remote control
7. Books

You would think that I leave stuff out, but I don’t. I swear, she has a hidden opposable thumb and that’s how she gets all this stuff!

But I love her. Sniff. She’s pretty darn cute!

If I hear this word one more time. . .

Okay. I admit it. I’m thirty. I’m no longer as down with the lingo as I used to be. In fact, I was a nerd in high-school so I wasn’t that down with the lingo then either. A couple of years ago, I worked for Starbucks and was surrounded by 17-21 year olds. Took me forever to figure out that when the 17 year old called me ‘Homes’ [as in ‘W’sup homes?’] he did not mean ‘Holmes’ [as in Sherlock – I’m rather book smart but clearly short on street smarts]. So I’m slow on learning the new terms. I do know what it means for someone to be ‘all up in your grill’ [in your face] and I’ve got a pretty good handle on how to use ‘for shizzle’ [for sure – I think. I actually haven’t had that confirmed].

But what is with the current trend of calling your significant other ‘boo?’ As in:
You’re my boo.
I love you, boo.
My boo and I are going out.

I don’t fraking get it! The only things I think of when I hear boo are:
Halloween
The Cute little girl from Monsters, Inc. [My nephew used to watch it so many times that my mum and I actually miss it now!]
Boo-Boo -Definition 1: I fell off my bike and scraped my knee and now my mum is going to put some polysporin on my boo-boo.
Boo-Boo – Definition 2: I was supposed to back up the database before I tried to fix it, but now it’s completely broken and I can’t even restore it. My boo-boo.

You know, all I can say is that if someone called me his boo, that would be a deal-breaker. While I’m a girly-girl, I’m also quite practical and utilitarian so the thought of someone applying such an idiotic term to me makes me cringe. And if anyone did apply such a term to me, he clearly does not know me.

Don’t let yourself be called boo. Really. It’s akin to when grown women wear pyjamas with fuzzy animals on them. It’s wrong wrong wrong.



Totally off-topic note: so I was on Mirriam Webster getting the spelling of a word today [I’m such a bad speller] and I saw that the word of the day was ‘cunctation.’ Doesn’t that sound totally dirty? Like you would get detention if you used it in high-school! Or your mama would slap you for saying it in the house. But in reality it means ‘delay.’