Friday, July 29, 2005

The three hour lunch

So much for budgeting... got paid today and accidentally hit Macy's to check out the sale rack. I scored a super cute 3/4 length coat in robin's egg blue. Ralph Lauren... 65% off! This is what I call hunting for women!

Shopping probably wasn't the wisest choice considering the "check engine" light is lit on my dashboard, but I'm confident that the oil change, airfilter replacement tomorrow morning will fix the issue. A good oil change is very healing for a jetta.

I actually only spent $130 on my shopping outing -- and scored the coat (original price $209) a couple work tops, one workout top and shorts (with pockets ideal for tennis.) Not too shabby!

I finished the latest Harry Potter book and will wait a respectable period of time before I launch into my theory for how the 7th book will conclude.

Made up a new word today...(in a meeting with respected peers) "Collapsetion" -- no definition yet. I am sad to report that I did a google search on my fictionary words and they all had hits on the Internet. I thought I was so unique and it turns out there is a whole world of people who think like me. I'm not sure if I should be comforted or not...


Monday, July 25, 2005

the joys of homeownership...

It started simply enough, "hmmm, I'm home this weekend, I should invite P&J over for a bbq on the deck" and turned into a charge the power drill and drag out the wall paint kind of a weekend.

Inviting folks over for dinner is a good motivation to clean the house. I enjoy the company too but the real benefit is a clean kitchen. I started Saturday morning by throwing in a load of laundry. It had been a few weeks since I've cleaned the lint trap in so I popped it out and started to remove the woolen blanket that had formed on the filter. Sadly, the trap was so full, and the "lint" so heavy that it slid off the screen and down into the dryer vent. I cursed:
DRAT! (Mom says I'm using the words shit and damn too much and that it doesn't sound like me.)

I pulled out the vacuum and attempted to suck the lint blanket up from the top - but had no luck. Nervous about burning down the entire "H" wing of the condo I decided I'd better pull the dryer out and try to get the lint out the back.

In order to get the dryer out of the laundry "closet" I had to remove the folding doors and pull out the washing machine. This was no easy task because the previous owner Jeff "I don't know how to forward my mail" S. installed pergo throughout the kitchen, livingroom and hall - but didn't pay to have it installed under the washer and dryer. (Heaven forbid you should pay an extra $100 and do it right!?) So, I wrestled the washer out and moved the dryer into a position where I could disconnect the vent to get my vacuum up in the hole. I still didn't get the lint blanket out. Satisfied that I had done all I could do I moved everything back and started the dryer only to realize the vent hose disconnected itself and I had to pull everything back out AGAIN. (this was the second utterance of the unladylike statement "this is darned inconvenient!")

With the dryer finally working I set out to put the doors back on the closet only to find that the one door was broken and the screw that holds the door into the bracket on the floor was too short for the space. I tried readjusting it - but it looked to me like when I moved the washer I popped up one of the "expertly" laid pergo strips.

Pulling out the electric drill I removed the metal bracket from the wall and used my trusty hammer (with protective cloth) to move the pergo piece back into place, and then replaced the L-bracket. This, of course, did not fix the problem of the door not hanging correctly. I tried to adjust the bottom screw on the door to extend the length - but the whole screw popped up into the hollow door. "Flick flack flippen thing!" Now I have a 30 pound rattle.

Deciding that I should just stop and prepare my house for the guests I decided to switch out the door with one from the guest room closet. I installed the replacement door easily enough, but it is not the same sized door and ended up nicking the wall during the installation.

I ran out to the hardware store to find a screw and a molly to fix the broken door. I ended up with wood filler, a replacement screw, and new slides for the top (along with new plants for the deck.) I am in the process of slowly filling the stripped out hole with filler so I can re-drill the hole and pop the molly and screw into the door. If it doesn't work I'll just move. (Juni wants me to move to Portland anyway - this is a fine excuse.)

My dinner guests (who are in the 3rd year of a similar project that started with the changing of a lightbulb) laughed and asked if I had a lint brush on a long handle. Apparently they make things that you can stick into the dryer slot to sweep out the lint. Who knew?

Dinner was good - but I slept through the most of it...

Wednesday, July 20, 2005

Trains & Johnny Depp

GrownUp? said...
Train good - car bad. Charlie and The Chocolate Factory? Thumbs up or thumbs down?
4:49 PM
MWR said...
Can you really get a train from PDX on a Monday morning and get into Seattle to arrive at work at a respectable (for me) hour?Yes, let's hear about CatCF. And if you happen to be one of these "I see everything with Johnny Depp" people, please let us know that too.
9:22 PM

tp_diaries says:
CatCF - good. Different and less scary than the original (which I loved as a kid.) The new crop of kids were looked a lot like the original batch - not including Charlie. I prefer the first Grandpa Joe - but the new one was charming. No songs (other than the oompa loompa ditties - which were original to the book) and no scary tunnel movie with the snakes. The story is essentially the same with some nice stuff at the end. The title sequence is 100% CG which was distracting, but once you're in the factory it's fun.

I was a little wary of the Michael Jacksonesque look of the new Willy - but at no point did I get the impression that he wanted to touch Charlie in an inappropriate fashion. I actually liked WW because there are times in the movie when he's the only one who seems to notice that the children are freaks.

I'm not one to see every Johnny Depp movie and I wasn't a rabid fan of 21 Jump Street although I do have someone in my world who was a "jumper." I have never seen nor had the desire to see Crybaby. I loved Finding Neverland - but I'm a "peter pan" junkie not JD.

My list of "must see" actors are:
Gwyneth Paltrow
Ed Norton (although, he's moved away from the smart movies into "Matt Damon" type movies so he could lose his status.)
Steve Martin (he's dreamy! I know it's totally creepy - he's 150 years old but he could come live at my house. "Oklahoma Oklahoma Oklahoma!")
Nichole Kidman (although Birthday Girl sucked! and I walked away from "Birth" and haven't gone back - it was slow and creepy.)

As for decent train times, no the earliest you can leave Portland is 8:45 am which ends up in a 12:15 pm arrival. If you have laptop and a phone - you could be 'working' during that time which is what I may do on my next trip down. The solo car trip is a pain.

Lastly, I think it's sad that we west coasters have not embraced rail travel more. I would love to take the train to Yakima to visit at Christmas. It's so humane - but no the train only goes to Ellensburg. This means my poor parents have to risk their lives to get me. That doesn't seem right -- although, it would mean I could get my inheritance earlier. It would be a bummer at Christmas for sure, especially for them. Anyway -- my point is that there's no solution - people won't ride the train until there are schedules that are convenient and the schedules won't increase until the ridership is there.

Tuesday, July 19, 2005

spell checker... who needs it?

Apparently, I do. Sorry about the lazy post from yesterday. I was in a hurry and forgot myself. I've never been a whiz at typing and frankly - I can't spell for shit. I still get tripped up on certain words (which is embarrassing - but I manage to communicate good anyways.)

I am aware that the over reliance on spell check contributes to my inability to win the grammar Olympics .

So, got home last night and on my doorstep was the new Harry Potter book and my bookclub book (which I must finish by the 27th.) So, what is in my bag? Harry Potter. I am clearly undisciplined. I'm home this weekend and so I should be able to finish HP by Sunday. If not, I will fail over to the erudite bookclub book - which I'm sure I will love. I usually do.

My cat - neurosis Joe - aka Peter (his real name) is in the uber needy phase that occurs after I've been away from home too much. I don't think I hit rem sleep last night. He was standing on me - knocking items off the bed side table and in happy purr mode most of the night. It's nice that he's so happy - but sheesh a girl needs some sleep. I did arrange for him to have a play date with my friend Rico while I was out which helps lessen the amount of time it takes kitty to calm down. I haven't figured out what to do with him while I'm in Spain for 2 weeks in October. I may opt for a daily visit from a pet sitter. I wonder if it would be weird to ask mom and dad to move in for two weeks while I'm away? Probably, because they'd have to get a sitter for their cute but unfriendly cat. The better choice would be my aunt G. She would clean the crap out of my condo - but she's not a cat person and that's a cruel thing to do. I'll figure something out - or lock him in the bathroom with a costco bag of food and the tub filled with litter. It wouldn't smell that bad...

(dang - this has to be so exciting to read. Cats and Harry Potter - whoa hold on to your shorts.)

Monday, July 18, 2005

I'm so relaxed right now I could pass out...

Ok, so the super relaxing weekend visiting Juniper and clan in Portland didn't quite turn out the way I imagined it. (Much like my love life.)

I expected to lay in the hammock under the lilac tree and read until my eyes couldn't see. Instead -- we had a blast! I don't think I've ever packed so much into a weekend -- including the whirlwind Vegas trip. There were:

3 bar-b-ques
2 birthday parties
2 1/2 movies. (Charlie and The Chocolate Factory (2005), Garden State (dvd) and some nutty John Watters movie with Tracey Ulman -- sorry fans it SUCKED!)
2 trips to the pool
1 patio created (didn't really help with that, just some art direction)
1 trip to a special store to be unnamed and undecribed - but I scored my mom a kick-ass bChristmas present!
1 yard sale (attended not thrown)
2+ poopie diapers (not mine)
.5 naps
2 total and complete melt-downs by a otherwise happy 7 year old.
3 costume changes at bbq #1 (Juni's sister has the mother of all costume selections in her basement -- she is the mistress of fun!)
1 much to much B.A. with scrotal exposure (again, not mine)
3 trips to Grand Central Bakery (scream it with me... YUMMY)
1 trip down the water slide for all the world to see the glory of me shooting out of a big yellow tube. I think I scared small children.

I stayed Sunday night and got up at 5am for the zippy trip back to Seattle. I must remember to always take the train. Always always always. I hate that drive.

Thursday, July 14, 2005

Winner of the worst dinner party comment ever:

Last night I attended a dinner with my friend and his co-workers. The group was diverse in regional origin and age. For the most part all were charming and well adjusted.

I made the desert which was a yummy chocolate cake decorated with melted white chocolate dots. Rico's boss who was stylish, well dressed with very nice shoes (obviously and openly gay) said to me how cute he thought the dots were and how easy it would be to do all sorts of shapes - he suggested a rainbow to stick on top of a cake. Joe (one of the bosses minions) asked "a rainbow, why a rainbow, are you a 6 year old girl?"

The boss replied that it would be cute for a coming out party. I suggested pink triangles for cupcakes. Joe asked why pink triangles.

The boss and I explained to origins of the pink triangles. (The Nazi's had an elaborate system to identify people, Jewish, Disabled, Muslim, Catholic, Gay, Irritating, Shifty -- these people were required to wear the identifying symbols.) Joe said, "how did they mark them?"

TP: typically, armbands, but in the camps the symbols may have been on their clothes.
Joe: but they didn't like brand them or anything that hurt?
TP: Uh, other than killing them, no they weren't hurt.
pause... while I waited for Joe to catch his error.
Joe: How do you know all this?
TP: (in my head: it's called history you nitwit) I've done a lot of reading about WWII, and recently had the opportunity to visit the National holocaust Museum in Washington DC.
BOSS: Oh, I've been there, it's great!
TP: I know, so moving.
Joe: Really, I heard it was boring.


Had Rico not moved in with coffee and a subject change, this is how I wanted to proceed:

TP: yeah, ever since they took out the virtual reality room where you get to shoot the Jews and Homo's from the prison walls - the museum is so dull. It's too bad that they only have that one video of the medical experiments - what it really needed is someone performing live mutilations on the half hour for the tour groups.

I can forgive Joe's ignorance about the different groups that were rounded up and sent to the camps - the Jewish folks really take all the spotlight - with 6 million people exterminated it's hard to remember that other groups were targeted as well. But I don't forgive a lack of understanding and respect for the event as a stain on our humanity and the need to be interested in what happened so we can hopefully prevent it from happening ever again. Boring... shesh!!

Tuesday, July 12, 2005

The Fictionary

The fictionary is a collection of terms coined by my people, it is forever growing. The list started during the dying dot com days and the only word I can recall is Cleverage. Feel free to use these words in your daily life, but we retain ownership over the the terms and have sole authority over the definitions.

Asparipiss: noun, foul smelling urine produced after eating asparagus (May, 2005 – E. B.)

Cleverage: verb, creative and unique use of a tool or resource for a new purpose. “I really thought it was interesting that my manager was able to cleverage the office supply budget to buy himself a new car.” (November, 1999 – P. H, S. M (snottybananafanny), T. P)

Confercation: noun, the conference located at a highly desirable location, such as Las Vegas or Hawaii thus enabling the employee to maximize conference downtime for personal enjoyment. (June, 2005 – T. P.)

Confusement: verb, the act of being puzzled. “The rules were unclear so you can understand my confusement.” (2005– A. B)

Narcophelia: noun, a sexual disorder in which an individual is strangely attracted to a person who is asleep. (2003 – T. P.)

Necrolepsy: noun, a physical disorder that causes the inflicted to fall asleep unexpectedly while having intimate relations with dead people. (2004 – T. P.)

Stadistics: noun, using numbers and figures to make the topic upon which you are reporting appear worse than it actually is, also the over use of statistics to prove your point, i.e. 100% of people surveyed stated that 90% of statistics were at least 75% reliable (+/- 5%). (2005 – T. P.)

Yalk: verb, talking while simultaneously yawning (2003 – A & E B)

Monday, July 11, 2005

Kissing Strangers: My trip to Las Vegas in 10 bullets

I can't tell you everything about the weekend trip to Vegas, because of the non-disclosure agreement so here are the highlights:

1) It was HOT. 114 degrees hot. Thank goodness for AC and big pools.

2) MGM grand is a great hotel - the room was nice and pools were amazing. Floating the "river" was fun. Starbucks - open 24 hours a day!!! So very civilized!

3) I popped $5.00 into a nickle machine and promptly scored a 3600 coin payout. (That's $180 to you and me.) I'm not a big gambler, so I 'cashed out' and was done gambling.

4) No more coins -- when you win you get a ticket and then the ticket can be redeemed at an ATM type kiosk. If the clink of the coin in the bin is your kind of music, you're in for a shock.

5) Got a henna tattoo. (Don't worry mom, it's not permanent.)

6) Danced the night away at Studio 54. I will say there was some kissing - but I won't (can't?) say with whom but am glad that Pennsylvania is far far away from Washington. My virtue is in tact but am happy trips to Vegas are a once every 5 year event. I wouldn't want to get a reputation.

7) On my way to the airport (from Seattle to Vegas -- pre-alcohol) I fell down an escalator and jacked up my arm, leg and butt. The purple and green bruises under the 8 inch scrapes on left arm and leg look pretty in my bathing suit.

8) The flight into Vegas was rowdy and fun and on the flight back people were snoring before we even closed the plane door.

9) Had a fabulous lunch at the Bellagio hotel. It was a lovely 2 hour break from the hustle of the batchelorette party. However, the waiter forgot to add the wine to our bill and I'm a little miffed because we were honest and told him, so he should have comped our dessert. When I run a hotel the size of Rhode Island, these are the things my staff will do.

10) If you want to lay by the pool, see the sights, party, kiss men from Pittsburgh, and eat out you need more than a day and a half. Vegas is gross and fake but for me, the pool junkie - it's totally great.

More Spain Photos

This is the last grouping of photo's from Spain. My next photo update will be either the 4th o' July camping extravaganza or the Las Vegas Pictures.

I do feel a bit guilty about this photo - but it was truely cute. The big burly American dad was walking through the street with his daughter and she was dragging a jump rope. He asked her to hurry up so she tied it around her waist and in doing so tied the back of her skirt up. I was not the only member of my party to take this photo - so I won't be alone in hell when I go.

- This 'fresco' is what I'm calling the Creepy Jesus. He's very alien looking. Don't sin, or I'll come down in my space ship and eat your soul.

Thursday, July 07, 2005

Spain Pictures (more to come!)

Most of these were taken at the Pablo Espanyol - a park built for the 1929 world expo to showcase the multiple styles of architecture.

The plaza is centered around a square and this gazebo


Wednesday, July 06, 2005

Apparently, I ain't ugly

First off, I have bad news about the mango pyramid. RiteAid f*cked up my order and printed doubles but failed to provide the photo disc and black and whites that I PAID for. I'm hopeful that they will fix the error when I pop in today - but this is RiteAid -- they can't even spell their own name so I'm sure that customer service is NOT their number one priority.

Secondly, it's a fact that summer is in full swing. I am booked solid every weekend now until August (which is only 4 weeks away.) I love summer, especially in Seattle where it's not to damn hot and the dress code is casual anyway. I spent a happy 4th of July weekend frolicking in the waters of Puget Sound near Port Gamble. PG is a cute little community which consists of 15 restored houses circa 1802, a cemetery (with a stunning view of hood canal) and the oldest operating wood mill in the United States. It is very reminiscent of Oysterville, WA - but the houses have been converted in to bookstores, spas, cafes, and stores specializing in handmade items. Oysterville - for the uninitiated is a quaint town on the Long Beach (WA) peninsula of privately owned historic homes. It's lovely - but the only thing you're going find to eat will be out of your picnic basket.

Anywho... spending the extended weekend with friends at their cabin was a great way to unwind. The weather was amazing and we spent at least 3 hours each day in the bay and enjoyed many hours on the deck. At night the B&B across the bay had a fireworks show each night which was lovely. We managed to see the Kingston 4th of July parade or most of it until Collin the 2 1/2 year old child of my friends had a melt down and we ducked into McD's for chicken nuggets.

Collin is a surprisingly pleasant child, who speaks French (or one particular phrase over and over and over) but get this he sleeps until 9 am. No shit - the kid goes to bed at like 7:30 or 8 and sleeps until 9. I tried to tell my girlfriend how lucky she was but words can not describe the joy of waking up day after day because you're done sleeping - not because the alarm has jolted you awake, or that mommies little angel gets up with the sun at 4:30 am. For those of you with angels of your own, who get up at 6am I think it is ok to have just a little spite in your heart for Collin's parents. They do know that every 9am day is a blessing and the rest of their lives are so bleak and dark that you really can't hate them.

I need to give a shout out to my parents who celebrated their bagillionth anniversary this weekend. I'm about to turn 37 (Christ almighty) which means (do the math....) they celebrated their 38th anniversary. That is a long damn time to put up with each other and they do it very well.

Happy Anniversary Mom & Dad. I loves ya!

Lastly, a belated note regarding a movie that Yasmine brought to movie night at her house. The Machinist staring Batman Begins Christian Bale. I'm not a suspense movie gal - I have a hard time when things like the refrigerator start to bleed - but this movie was pretty good. It was twisty and confusing and fun like Memento was fun. I don't like bleeding appliances, but I like having to think and figure out what's going on and I dig imagery clues - which is I think why I love LOST!

Yaz is funny in the way she consumes movies - she will see everything by an actor rather than bend to the whim of the media wind. Clearly, she's on a Christian Bale tare at the moment. is perfect for those of you who like to see everything by an actor. It's how I came to see Girl with the Pearl Earring. I love Mr. Darcy -- oops he probably prefers to go by his given name Collin Firth or as I refer to him in my dreams - Mr. TP gal.

HUGE NEWS (for me anyway) my boss finally (after 2 years of begging) approved a job requisition and I'm getting a minion!!! Happy dance in my office in 2 minutes! I'm sure there will be plenty to blog about once the minion comes online. (I hope not to call the minion - minion to their face - but we'll see how that goes.)

I'm off to Las Vegas this weekend for a batchelorette party - I'm sure there will be fun tales if we survive. The pre-party last Friday was fun - but it was a plastic penis straw kind of event. I'm not a plastic penis straw kind of gal. After dinner we went to a dance club called Larry's. I haven't been out to a club club in ages - all my people are married. I expected to spend the evening dancing with the girlfriends but not so. Larry's caters to the urban male (hip hop music, go go dancers) and some of the urban males have a hankerin for the larger ladies. (I don't think I'm revealing too much when I say that I am not a barbie.) I was pinched, winked at, asked to dance, and had a bouncer bump into me and say:

"If you EVER bump me like that again..." leaning in and close "it would be ok by me baby." Uh, thank you Mr. 7 foot tall bouncer man.

The bride to be bestowed upon me the "biggest flirt" award. Frankly, the whole night was outside my comfort zone, I'm not use to being seen that way. One nice man asked me why I didn't have a boyfriend "you ain't ugly" he told me. I was at a loss as to how to respond. "I don't know, I'm looking for a man who wouldn't say to a woman, you aint ugly as a come on." Also, I'm not looking just to 'hook up' (that means just have sex Mom) no offense to those of you who can and do hook up, I'm looking for more and I don't think it's too much to hope for -- after all I ain't ugly.