The Rantings of an Indentured Servant

Sort of Self Explanatory, Don't Ya Think? If it's not obvious, stop. Pan up. Re-read. There you go genius...

Thursday, July 28, 2005

Lions and Tigers and ...Burglars? oh my....

So I get home from softball tonight after dropping the boy toy off at his house. It's about 10:30 or so.

I'm humming the Red Hot Chili Peppers song that was last playing in the car when I walk around the van to go up and open the gate and see the garage side door is open.

We don't actually keep cars in our garage, mind you. We keep stuff. Bicyles, motorcycle, lawn mower, stuff I don't need now but am taking back to college with me, etc. It has been broken into once before and they stole a bunch of tools and the likes.

Seeing as the side door is always padlocked shut, I edge by the van, still humming and close the gate behind me. I walk up the sidewalk and into the house, locking the door behind me. I go upstairs to my dad, (why, I don't really know. I think maybe this time he won't make me do it.) and say "Dad, the garage door is open I think."

Now, there's really no reason for me to be as anxious about having to check it out if I need to. I know self-defense and am quite capable of taking care of myself in shady situations. I just don't like putting myself in those situations if I can avoid it.

"You'd better go check it out and see if anythings stolen," he says. "Then see if you can shut it." As an afterthought he adds, "Take your brother with you if you want." Yeah... no offense, but I highly doubt my 12 yr old bro is gonna fend off some burglar in the middle of the night. I stand a better chance alone, not having to protect him too.

Dad gives me the keys to the padlock, because it's so old that the sprng doesn't really work anymore, so the only way you can shut it is by holding the key turned and clicking it up and turning the key back to latch it in place. It's basically ghetto, but what are you gonna do? *sigh*

So, I go downstairs and seek a flashlight. There are no lights in my garage. Since it's mainly storage we usually don't use it at night, and it's unfinished on the inside, so there isn't any electricity or anything like that.

Of course, the big camp lantern flashlight that would have been most useful was borrowed by my cousins a couple days ago, which means the chances of my family ever seeing it again are very slim. I settle for a long, medium weight one with batteries that are obviously about to go out, but it was the only flashlight we had that actually sort of worked.

Now, I'm not stupid. I'm not going near that garage without some sort of means of protection aside from my own two hands and elbows. I scrounge around the basement looking for something suitable. I was going to take a bow staff or something of the like since I'm familiar with them, but I figured if something did happen and I hurt this burglar with a butterfly sword it would probably look a little contrived on my part, y'know? So any martial arts weapon is out. hmm.... what else is there....?

I take a look around the main storage area in the basement.

chainsaw.... too messy.
ice pick... have to be too close to use it.
iron... not practical, as I said, garage has not electricity
grill fork... possibility
sledge hammer.... closer, but could possible hurt more that intended for the situation
A rubber mallet! Hard enough to knock out but not to crush the skull. Perfect!

So I take the sledge hammer imposter and my flashlight out to the garage. I am ready to do battle!

I quietly walk up to the door and click the flashlight on. I shine it through the window, so they will know I have come. If they want to come out now, I'll let them go peacefully. If I find them in there when I search, I'll kill them.

Mallet in one hand, flashlight in the other, I kick the door open and quickly survey the area. Everything seems in order. All bicycles accounted for, motorcycle in place, bean bags unharmed. That's when I hear it!

"Come out from behind the pantry unit!" I exclaim. I see a shadow move and hear the rustling papers. I shine the light to the source of the sound. Nothing.

I do another survey of the garage with the light and find nothing. I step closer to the pantry unti, a knot tightening in my stomach. Something moves quickly towards the door and I drop the rubber mallet on it, catching a wisp of something beneath the mallet before I hear a sharp cry pierce the night.


It was the cats tail. He must have snuck in while the door was open.

I lift the mallet and look around one final time before shutting the door. Right as I swing the door shut my dad hollars out from the upstairs window.

"Did you find anything?!" I look up after about wetting my pants at the sudden sound of his voice. My brother is looking out the window with him.

"No. Doesn't look like anything's stolen, but I'm not really sure what was in there to begin with, so I don't know for sure."

"Well, lock up and get in the house." Gee, thanks for the overwhelming concern that your oldest child just could have faced burglars for you. He looks into my hands and sees the mallet. "What were you going to do with that?"

"Hit 'im in the head hard enough to knock 'im out! What do you think?" And then he laughed at me! Like it was funny! I had just risked my life and because I took some thought as to the means of my defense he laughs, like it's cute or something!

That's it. Next time there might be burglars in the garage, he can go look into it, and if he takes a mallet, I'm going to laugh at him. Won't be so funny when he gets hit in the head because he didn't take anything to protect himself with.

Oh, then come to find out, the two sisters are the ones who didn't properly lock the side door, which is probably why it ended up open like that. I'm going to have to talk to them tomorrow. Maybe next time I should make them go face the burglars.

Killer bees in my basement!!!

So, over the past two days I have come to suspect that there is a bee-hive somewhere on the outside of my house near the windows to the basement.

Why? you may ask. Let me enlighten you.

In the past two days, I have killed ten, count them, ten bees flying around by the window near the basement stairs. This also happens to be directly outside of my bedroom. Nice, huh? Get up to go pee in the middle of the night and get swarmed by killer bees. I have had to resort to wearing flip flops or slippers because I might step on an unconscious bee while trying to fend on the rest as I make a path to my door.

As if this weren't bad enough, I don't like bees. It's not that I think they're mean or ugly or anything, it's just that a couple of years ago, while I was in high school, I was attacked by them.

We have railroad ties that surround the patio in my back yard. There was a hive located inside one of the ties, and as I was mowing by the patio the mower must have hit the tie and vibrated the hive. The next thing I knew I was in the house with my sister pulling bees out my shirt hair and I had about 20 stings on my person. Good thing I'm not allergic.

I had never really had any other encounters with bees, except for one time at my dad's company picnic when I got stung when I went to take a drink of my soda, but the whole being swarmed by a hive of angry bees bit was pretty traumatic. So, I've got a bad history with them. They scare me a bit.

So, the first day I see mr. bee flying around my room I shoo him out and get my dad.

"Dad, there are bees in the basement." I say. He knows what happened and that I don't like bees. However, my dad is the kind of dad who tells you you're going to help him fix the toilet, only to really mean that you're going to fix the toilet, he's just going to supervise and watch you get drenched because you didn't have enough common sense to turn the water off. Then say to you, "Guess you should have thought about that before, eh?"

He looks at me with this 'you're telling me this why' look and says "So kill them."

There's no arguing that he should kill it because I don't like them. I simply ask "How?"

He shrugs and says "Get the flyswatter." Because a fly swatter is going to protect me from a swarm of pissed of bees! Yeah, okay.... and this piece of cardboard should also stop that armor piercing bullet from killing me too. Thanks dad.

I take the flyswatter and a piece of thick cardboard to the basement with me, but I also have a secret weapon... hairspray!

That's right. Hairspray. It gets on their wings and in their eyes and it gives me an advantage. I have since found earlier this morning that OFF deep woods bug spray works much better to knock them out and I have altered my method to incorporate this element.

My dad still hasn't checked the outside of the house yet, so I keep coming downstairs to ambushes of the little monsters. But I have the flyswatter, the OFF, and my piece of cardboard at the bottom of the staircase so they can't catch me off guard. Tomorrow after work I think I will move the front to their domain and see if I can't win the war.

I guess a good thing that has come from this infiltration is that I am no longer as scared of the bees anymore. I have steeled myself so that they cannot smell the fear on me as I go into battle. Somehow, a small victory has been gained, I think. By conquering them on my own terf, I think I can successfully deal with them in the wild now.

But I'll feel much better when we find their hive and get rid of it. I don't want to spend every night in skirmishes with insects that are the size of my little toe.

Shh.... I hear buzzing.... quick, my flyswatter and bug spray! A moi, for God and Rockford!

Softball update

So... Sun. practice was cancelled because of the heat index... wussies. 115 is nothing. Then...Tue. game cancelled because of "rain." It was sprinkling for pete's sake. wussies. However, tonights game with mom's company team went splendidly.

We won (the first time this team has won all season!) and we didn't make a ton of errors. I was surprised since practice on Tues was also practice do to "rain." And I batted 1.000! Sweet! (That means I had a base hit every time I was up to bat!)

So... yeah. Go me!

Tuesday, July 26, 2005

I would like to observe a moment of silence

I would just like to let everyone know that one of my beta fish, Dionysus, was bitten by an earwhig who managed to get into his tank and it sent him into shock. He has since been flushed from our world into that of the great bowl in the sky.

It is with a heavy heart that I pushed the lever, but burial at sea seemed the only thing appropriate. (Plus, if I let him sit in the hospital tank much longer it was really going to start to smell.) So, If we could have a moment of silence for his passing ......

Alright. Apollo (my other beta and nysus's half-brother) is still alive and swimming, however, I can see that he feels the absence of his kin. It is a sad day for us both.

Saturday, July 23, 2005

Just some more stuff

First, sorry I haven't posted in a couple of days. I've been busy being a social butterfly, so you know... I appreciate your understanding. I did it for you anyways.

Two parties in two days... I'd say I'm rather popular huh?

The first of said parties was on Friday night. Friday afternoon bracemaster flex (my 16yr old sis- aka lesser bloodsucker,) her friend and I got out crafting together (This is when you devote a good 4-5 hours to going to various craft stores in town for supplies, ideas, etc...) We actually had a nice time and I picked up some much needed supplies for decorating the straw hat I bought at Theatiki. (My cross-eyed retarded kitty peed on the plume I had attached when I brought it home. Completely missed the hat, but absolutely ruined the plume. I was livid, to say the least.) I obviously can't go to the next event, Galesberg, with a plain hat, so I got some new plumage...

Anyhow, friday night a girl from our church softball league is having her 20th birthday party. It's a "cocktail" party and we are all encouraged to wear our "cutest summer attire." I figured that a clean pair of jeans and t-shirt that didn't stink wouldn't count, so I actually put some effort into my ensemble, albeit a small amount. Hell, I even took a shower before hand to boot!

The boyfriend (I just can't really think of any funny nicknames he's had of late... ) went with to help me temper the massive amount of socail exposure I was about to face. In case you're wondering, I'm not a largely social creature. I mean, I do have friends, but not an overabundance. I think quality over quantity. Asides from that, most of my friends are older family friends or re-enactment friends. In a way you could say that I'm wary of being friends with people of my generation. They're too inconsistent. I'm too cynical. It makes for a bad match. But I digress on my deeply rooted mistrust of the motives of people being nice to me.

Anyhow... We go to this shindig. We picked our softball buddy up an amusing card and a wiffle ball bat set. We don't know her extremely well so I didn't want to get to personal a gift or anything. Commit a social faux pas, y'know? There are snacks and the like on this table, and there's a juice bar set up on the patio and everyone is going nuts mixing juice drinks and living it up. Or pretending to anyways... It was a strictly juice bar... I think...

It's always interested me how people respond when in socail settings of a number of about 15 and the things you learn just by watching and listening. I swear it was like getting the latest on dit at a regency assembly or something. I sat there pondering the meaning of life while Stacey "absolutely couldn't believe that he would, like, do something like that. We've only gone out like three times and he thinks we're like going to get married or something. I was like, oh my god! Get a life, you know?"

So maybe I wasn't exactly pondering the meaning of life, but I was thinking of ways I could possible establish a re-enactors permanent trading post in Rockford and run it on the side of being a teacher. The idea has merit at least.

Of course, there was also the obligatory person playing an acoustic guitar throughout the night, and the coming and going of pairs in and out of the house for whatever gossip had to be guarded from the ears of them (i.e. the people that wouldn't really care what you had to say, but you don't want to say it in front of them because then it makes you look important. Basically, in most cases... me. Not that I feel left out or anything :-)

Chastity was there,(I know this is going to come off sounding spiteful or jealous, but I vow that it is meant to be taken as neither, it is just the way of things) but I've notice that when around the pack she tends to kind of assimilate. I'd almost say she's a different person depending on the people she's around, which is true of all of us, but with her I think it's at a deeper level. It can be hard sometimes to distingiush her self from just the influence of others on her self. It's just her personality type. At the core, she's an aim to please kind of person. (I guess I'm more of a bugger off, type of gal.) So we talked for a good part of the night, making comments on what good blogfodder I would have after the evening was over. The boy toy and I retired from the fete at around 10:45 or so.

Then, today, it was the cultmaster's birthday. (The boy toy's dad is in the masonic lodge-aka-the cult) So we had a huge bash at their place for the big 5-1. Mom#2 (boyfriends mom) had her family there as well as cultmaster's family. It was quite humorous to observe. Her family sat on the main floor while his family retired to the basement.

Now, part of this was due to seating I grant. But I can't help but think that part of it was definately due to the whole familial social circle. *Shrug* People are just so funny sometimes.

But I'm sure you've all tired of my Jane Goodall goes to birthday parties edition, so I'll just leave off. But if you have any good observation to add feel free. I think I may take a collection of party observations to write a book or something. "Observations on homo-homo-sapiens in the atmosphere of peer celebrations.. or something" hmm... the idea has merit...

Wednesday, July 20, 2005

Ahh reality t.v. and romance novels

So, Dr. "Special" is a reality t.v. nut. Right now we're switching between Surreal Life (Where washed out celebs live together for so long in a carnival house,) Sports kids, Mom's and Dad's (the crazy parents who put their kids in sports) and Made (where losers are turned into BMXers, cheerleaders, or ladies men)

It's actually really sad that this is considered ok entertainment. Not that I'm anti-television or anything, but honestly, what kind of people do we expect to find in the world when that is what we fill our time with. I don't want to seem like a hoighty-toighty aristo or anything, but where the hell is the civilized culture?! What happened to people just sitting down and enjoying a novel (classic or contemporary, but just something with more than a fourth grade reading level!)

I understand not everyone shares my love of the written word, but it's getting bad when my boyfriend, who took AP English in highschool doesn't even know who John Keats is, y'know?

Yes, yes, I know what you're thinking. "Virtue, but you're an English Major. You want to teach English to high schoolers. Of course you're going to think it's important."

But even if I weren't biased I would still think it's extremely important for our current and next generations to have a working sense of literacy. We can't keep lowering expectations because we're not meeting them. If we want America to have a literacy rate over that of a fourth grader we need to stop lowering the vocabulary of the evening news and the reading level of the newspaper to that of fourth grade. Doesn't that make sense?

I'm not saying I expect every person in the country to have read every single novel in the classical literary canon, but still, I don't think it's too much to ask that people have a sense of what it is and have read a few high points, y'know? Do I ask too much?

And I don't want you to think that I only expect people to dabble in literary fiction. We should all be responsible for knowing some basics about the major fields of study. (Gads! I sound so pro-liberal arts studies don't I?) I just think we should all hold ourselves responsible for seeking knowledge and understanding.

I know we're not an egalitarian society, but we're not entirely a meritocracy either. So, although we all don't start with the same opportunities and it's impossible for us all to finish with the same results, I don't think we should let that make us complacent in our position.

I know some of you are going to say, "Yeah, but you don't know everyone's circumstances, and you don't know what it's like" and you're probably right. But, I do know what my circumstances are, and I come from blue-collar backgrounds. As much as I would like to say lower middle class, I think I have been disillusioned enough by the world to say perhaps middle working class. And I'm okay with that. But I don't let it excuse my ignorance. It drives me to exceed in an area where I can control how much effort I put in and what the results look like. Education. I'm aware that not everyone's educational opportunities can be equal, and I think it's bull crap. But I still think that it's important for us all to get as much of it as we can.

Literacy is the first step to that. So I beg you. Turn off the reality t.v. for an hour and pick up a book... or a magazine, or the newspaper, or something. Hell, keep something on the coffee table for commercial reading if you don't want to miss a show that much. I don't care what you read, just do it.

(I'll let you in on a secret... I don't read strictly classics or contemporary authors all the time... some of my favorite reads are historical fiction romances... anything is better than nothing.)

So just get out of your bubble and read a book.

you win some, you lose some

Well, yesterday at Church Softball we won 16 to 1! Hoo-Ya! My batting was a little off, but other than that not much was different. However, at the Mom's Company League tonight we lost 13-11. It SUCKED!

Our regular pitcher is on vacation, so he wasn't there, and the sub stank more than a pile of poo. He couldn't really pitch, he couldn't throw, but worse than that, he had a bad knee, so he couldn't even get to the ball to pick up the grounders and stop the play! We should have just put a pitching machine on the mound for all the difference it would have made. At least then there wouldn't have been so many walks! I was pretty upset because he made some really bad throws to first base (which is my position) because he wasn't taking his time, he was just throwing without looking. Anyways... it wasn't pleasant.

I just strongly dislike it when people don't give it 110, y'know? But it's over, so I guess I'll let it go. But I really wanted to throw the ball at his head or something (at least then he wouldn't be able to procreate...)

However, Dr "Special" made me a pizza when we got home, so that makes it better a little bit. Food has a way of doing that I guess...

Sunday, July 17, 2005

Riverfest... and creepy carnies

So I would have posted sooner, but I got back from the Beloit Riverfest pretty late last night and I couldn't really find time between church, my great grandparents from Arizona visiting, and softball practice today.

Sooo.... The Great Beloit Riverfest... which was, might I add, more river and less fest. After going to see the Fantastic Four with my family yesterday afternoon we headed directly to Riverfest. The main reason we went was to see Collective Soul (who rocked, btw) but my parents thought it would be nice to make a day of it.

We get there, and it really wasn't that impressive. There were like, three stages, but only one was an actual stage. The other two were like, places you could plug your guitar in and play for like 10 people on a lawn. The first band that was playing was the 569 boys or something like that. I dunno... but they sucked! Hard! All they did were cover songs, and very poorly at that. It was bad enough that my dad actually invited the three bloodsuckers(aka my siblings) to walk down what I like to call "carnie row." It was a hundred yard span of bike path that was taken over by water boat racing, pop the balloon booths and other carnie specialties. Included were, you guessed it, carnival rides.

Taking the bloodsuckers down carnie row is basically like putting yourself in 200 dollars immeadiate debt. They cannot be content to just get away from the crappy music. Oh no! They have to ride every single ride twice. And this isn't cheap. Each ride costs about four to five tickets, which in turn are .75 cents a piece. Now I'm not a math major, but that's 3-4 bucks a ride per person= RIP OFF!!! And of course, my dad can't deal with the fact that I'm almost twenty and am not compelled to go on carny rides with my siblings. So instead he forces me to go.

I mean that literally too. He will seriously be offended and p.o.ed if I refuse to ride, causing major reprecussions for me in other aspects of life. (He noticed my second piercing the other day, which caused some tension. He basically wouldn't talk to me about it because he didn't like it and it would make him mad.) Not that carnie rides aren't fun. Not in that theme park roller coaster kind of way, but in that "I can't believe this ride passed inspection..." kind of way. (Occasionally the, "I wonder if it was even inspected at all..." kind of way.)

So, I go on the "sizzler" with the lesser of the bloodsuckers (I'm the oldest in my family, but the next oldest, one of my sisters, isn't actually that bad most of the time, which is why she gets dubbed the "lesser") This is basically like a scrambler ride. And because I am like, 5lbs heavier than her I have to sit on the outside. I got smashed. I even have a bruise on my side from getting shoved into the side of the seat.

After that we went on the zipper, which we both adore. It was magnificent. We topped out at 5.5 backward spins with a run of 4.5 spins three times in a row. Beat that!

Then we were out of tickets, which was fine by me, but the greater bloodsucker (my only brother and the 3rd oldest hellspawn) demanded more. Now I am obliged to ride the sizzler with the three bloodsuckers again. This time, it's a different carnie operater. He puts us in and says something carnie-esque and I manage a small smile so as not to be rude. Then he straps the greater and youngest bloodsuckers into their seats.

The ride starts and it's well and fun enough, except that everytime we pass the carnie he says "hi" or "hello again" and it's kind of creepy! Then the ride stops and he offers my sister and I his hand to get out of the car. Now, I'm not a man-hater feminazi or anything, but dude... two feet of the ground is not a huge drop, you know? Anyway... after that I gather the leeches and we are going out the gate when he stops us and gets kind of close.

"You know, if just you four (he says this while looking directly at me) want to come back later, you know, when it's just me here and not the other guy, I'll give you a free ride (on what, I didn't ask...) but you can't tell anyone else (uh huh... typical of serial kidnapping carnies) alright?"

In my mind I think, "fat chance a-hole" But I hide my disgust and mumble, "Oh, thanks... let's go kids..." We get to my parents and the lesser bloodsucker starts cracking up because "Virtue got hit on by a carnie because of her boobs and he offered us a free ride later tonight if we don't tell anyone!" Needless to say I got ribbed because of that for the next twenty minutes. Ick. (and fyi, no we didn't go back later when the other guy wasn't there... *shudder*)

After this traumatizing experience, we made our way to the main lawn stage and heard the last few songs of the second opening band. Then they tore down and set up and the show began.

Now, I've wanted to see Collective Soul for a very long time. Years. I love them. I'm also pretty short, coming up at about 5'5 on a good day. So when we got spots up by the fence that seperates the reserved seating from the rest of the crowd, I was excited. I would be able to actually see the stage!

You can imagine my angst when after about the third song, this, well, very full figured woman (in the worst possible way) steps in front of me with a beer in one hand and a cigarette in the other. Okay, she was huge and about as wide as she was tall. Plus her breath stank of cheap beer and she was holding her cigarette in my face. Now, I've been to enough concerts with mosh pits and the likes to hold my own against drunks in a crowd. I've also been to enough concerts where my view gets blocked because of said drunks. I have not waited since the 6th grade to see Collective Soul to have this fat drunken whore ruin it for me!

I stand on tip toe barely reaching her ear and shout "'Scuse me! Ma'am!" I'm usually a very passive-agressive person at concerts. You know, subtle elbows grinding on backbones, not realizing it because the crowd is just too packed. Stomping on toes while jumping because that stupid crackhead keeps pushing me behind his 6ft biker buddy. But for some reason, I just decided that I'd had enough. I was not suffering through another concert at the whims of incondsiderate wankers.

So when she ignored me, I just kind of lost it.

"Hey, you! Lady!" I'm practically in her ear and bellowing at the top of my lungs. "You're gonna hafta move." Nothing. I spend about two more minutes trying to be nice and getting her to move. I know she can hear me because from the looks I'm getting everyone else can.

She still ignores me! I can't believe it! This does me in. I'm kind of drawing a crowd at this point, because I think secretly, everyone else who was around me sympathized with my situation. Especially the short people. In their eyes they were saying "You go sister! We've been there! Stand up for yourself" (Of course, I could just be trying to validate my behavior, and they could have been really thinking "Shut up you crazy midget, you're ruining the show." But I choose to think it was the former.)

Feeling bolstered by their silent support, I tap drunken fat master on the shoulder. Finally, a response!

She turns to look at me, and the second her eyes make contact with mine my fist makes contact with her face.

"I said you were going to hafta move!" I repeat. She sneers at me, sizing me up, when she looks behind me. The crowd has gathered, packed tightly at my back. As drunk as she is, she sees it in their faces that if she messes with me, she messes with them.

"I-I-I... I was looking for my husband..." she mutters.

"Well, " I spit back, "He's not here, so get the hell out of my way."

She hesitates, actually thinking about taking on the crowd and myself, then obviously thinks better of it.

"I'm waiting" I say. And she mumbles something under her breath and saunters her drunk self right back where she came from.

The crowd cheers and lifts me up to body surf to the stage,where Ed Roland (the lead singer and songwriter) personally takes my hand and pulls me up to sing a duet with him. He is so enthralled by my beauty that he invites me backstage and falls immeadiately in love with me proposing marriage (which I honorably decline, as Dr. "Special" would be jealous.) He then pledges me his eternal friendship and support and drops me off at my house with a parting kiss...

Well, okay, so maybe that last bit didn't really happen, but it would have been cool. I did get the fat drunk lady to leave though :-) And the rest of the show was awesome. I wouldn't mind seeing them again... as long as it's nowhere near a carnival.

Friday, July 15, 2005

Guess what everyone... I got pierced!

Okay, so it was only a second set of holes in my ears, but still. It was semi-traumatic, okay?

Chastity and I decided to go to ~cue dramatic music~ the mall yesterday. Now, she just got her second holes in may or so, and we have both been talking about it for the past couple years. So, we were there and she was just like, "Shut and and do it Virtue."

So we walked into Claire's and got my ear's pierced a second time.

It didn't hurt really (I was only about 3 when my first holes were made, so I don't really remember it) but the chick that pierced them was a, well, not very nice kind of stuck up tramp.

I asked for the white gold 3mm balls (the cheapest studs available, since I was just going to switch them out when I got home for some pink diamond ones) and the bimbo can't find any. So she goes into the back and comes back with the little box. She never actually shows them to me, but repeats that "You wanted the white gold, right?" "

"Yep" I say back.

She puts the purple dots on my ear and holds the mirror in front of me (which did virtually no good anyway since she's really bad at holding a mirror so you can see yourself in it) So I had Chastity do the are-they-even-check. After a curt nod from her I say, "Okay, looks good."

Madame peroxide blonde with fake highlights puts the gun to my ear and *click*

I fell a twince of sting and then some burning sensations as she switches to the right ear and *click* I'm done. She flips the mirror up for me to see for like, a second, then puts it away quickly and gets my stuff for me to come to the counter to pay. The kit I ordered was 19.00.

"That'll be 42.66."

Now, somewhere in my head, the optomist in me is thinking she's just joking. Then, the working college student in me thinking, Jesus, how many hidden fees can you have for an ear piercing? Does she work on commission or something?! Then, the retail employee in me is thinking, what exactly did she charge me for. I want to see a list or something. You know, official documentation that it's 42.66.

"Why is it so much?" I ask. I'm just about sure I would have been laughing at the look on my face is I could have seen it. Think lost puppy, naive child, and disgruntled customer all in one.

16 oz. Piercing antiseptic...........................$ 10.88
Cost of piercing............................................ $5.00
14 k white gold diamond stud..................$24.95
Tax...................................................... $1.83
Look on my face when snotty asst. manager tells me that brings the total to 42.66... Priceless

"14 k white gold diamond stud?!" I squeak. "I asked for the white gold 3mm ball." Silently, to myself, I added, how the heck do you mix those two up? Are you on crack! Then the thought occured to me that I had just gotten my ears pierced by a crack addict because by the look that came across her face when I said that she had mixed the two of them up.

Now, I'm usually understanding about things. And at least she didn't screw up the actually holes themselves y'know? But if I wanted to pay 40 bucks to get my ears pierced I would have gone to a professional at a tattoo parlor, not some washed out crackhead at Claires.

"Well," she says , "I have to charge you for those."

Like hell! I stare her down good and hard. "These aren't what I asked for. How can you charge me for them when you gave me the wrong product?" I'm thinking to myself, there's got to be some kind of law against this that I could use if I have to go to court and involve the authorities. Can you sue your ear-piercer for malpractice, or maybe misleading practices. Hmm.... I stare her down some more. She gets the manager.

This is where it gets all peotic justice-y. I have worked at Kohl's for a little over two years. The current manager of Claires is one of my former co-workers at Kohl's. Now, we're not best friends, but we were on good terms when she left. Ms. Asst. Manager explains the situation and my former co-worker just looks at her and is like, "If that's what she asked for and you screwed up you have to give them to her for the price of what she wanted." I wish I had a camera phone. I would have taken a picture of her face, made a t-shirt out of it that said "get your ears pierced by a crackhead," and handed them out in front of Claire's whenever she was working.

She rerung my purchase and didn't say anything else to me after she gave me my new total.


So, now I have these really awesome 14k white gold diamond studs instead of plain old balls. The sad thing is, for a moment, I felt really bad that she messed up. I didn't really want to screw them out of twenty bucks. I work in retail, so I know how people try to cheat the system. However, when I realized what a bonafide you-know-what she was (think alliteration poeple) , I kind of hope maybe she's done the same dumb thing before and is going to get in trouble for being such a stiff to customers.

Anyway... I am glad to have finally gotten them pierced and they are doing fairly well so far. When they were pierced as a kid I had a really bad reaction to them (We thought I had metal sensitivity, but now I wonder if it wasn't just imporoper cleaning and maintenence. Guess I'll find out...) but seeing as my ears haven't fallen off yet I think I'll live.

I guess if a few weeks go by and I don't have any knew posts you'll know that you should start wearing black armbands or something...

hehe... just kidding... sort of...

Wednesday, July 13, 2005

Haloscan commenting and trackback have been added to this blog.

Tuesday, July 12, 2005

We lost at softball and I hate Maury Povich (however you spell it)

So... we had a softball game tonight. I play on two co-recreational leagues, one for church and one for my mom's company. These last two games for church I've been playing first base, and doing pretty well. My batting has been decent as well, going 3 for 4 last week (Which means I got on base 3 out of 4 times when I was up to bat, and either struck out or hit the ball but someone caught it or got it to first base before me the other time) and 2 for 4 with a sacrifice for an RBI (sacrifice= I was out at first but someone else scored because of it ~ RBI=run batted in)

I had a really nice line drive that the pitcher wouldn't have caught if it were only a foot higher. Dang. And I caught some nice outs at first. I think I make a pretty good firstbasemen. (I'm a lefty, so I have the natural advantage too!)

What pissed me off though was the other team. We were the away team, so at the top of the 1st (top of the first= the first half of the first inning. I'm not huge on baseball terminology, but it takes to long to explain it every time so bear with me...) so at the top of the first my team (River Valley) was up to bat. We did alright but didn't score any runs. So at the bottom of the first the other team was up to bat.

This is my church league that played tonight, mind you, but here they are, the first batter on the first pitch, and what does that bastard do?! He steps into it so it hits his leg! It was an inch inside (meaning off of the plate closer to the batter)! Are you telling me you crowd the plate so much that an inch inside is going to hit your thigh?!!! My arse! Then, later on, this guy comes up to bat who went to my high school and was on scholastic bowl with me (yes, that's right, I was co-captain of the academic bowl team for my high school... yea, keep laughing... I'll find out where you sleep...)

Now, in scholastic bowl he was real nice to me, y'know? He gets one ball, one, and the next pitch he doesn't even lift the bat. He just stands there like the arrogant wanker he is. That irked me. Even if you know you're not going to hit you have the respect to lift the bat. He wasn't even that good of a hitter. Hell, I hit harder than him and I'm a chick. Not that I'm not all about equality of the sexes, but I understand that my pectoral muscles will never in their natural state be the equal of a male of the same size as me. I've come to terms with this. But at least I lift the freakin' bat!

Then they had this kid that was like, stretch armstrong or something. This guy would stretch his arms out and catch fly balls that were 10 feet away from him! (fly balls-aka pop-ups- balls hit high into the air, not to insult anyone's intelligence, but just in case) We would be cheering like "Yes, he can't make it! Run!" Then Stretch reaches out his arm and next thing I know the ball is in his glove and I was standing there with my mouth open like a lost kid at the video store.

It was ridiculous to say the least.

At the bottom of the last inning (meaning, they were up to bat) we were winning by two. All we had to do was hold them and we had the game. The problem is our pitcher is sort of a liability because he gets angry really easily, and the other team knew this and played off of it. Part of my job at first base includes saying things to him between pitches like "deep breath," "let it go," and "play your game, not theirs." I know he's a guy, and they get really competetive and emotional over sports, but seriously... it's a church league, not the freakin' world series. Anyway, we ended up losing.

On a high note, a ball from the other daimond was fouled up and landed in our diamond. I fielded it (picked it up off the ground with my glove) and threw it back to their pitcher. Their shortstop then said to me, "Hey! How do you feel about signing a contract?" This made me feel pretty good, because for someone from another team to say that is a big compliment to my arm. It definately made me want to fluff my feathers a bit, y'know?

However, I politely declined because I am loyal to my teammates. (Although if they would have actually offered a contract I might have considered for the right amount... nahhh...) My mom's company league (Southern Imperial) plays tomorrow night, but my team has a bye week (meaning we get the week off while everyone else gets to play) so I'm a little disappointed. However, Dr. Special said we could practice tomorrow because his batting has been sucking lately.

Oh yeah. And I hate Maury Povich... however you spell his last name.

Sunday, July 10, 2005

Back to 2005- weekend review

I'm baaaaAAaaack. But seriously, I have returned to 2005 and it will take a day or two for me to adjust. While I bask in the delight of AC I'll recap my weekend for you.

So, we left on Friday at noon thirty as intended. This is the first time all season that both Chastity and I have been on schedule. Pappa Pizza (who will now be referred to as Dr. "Special") was good at whining enough to make us just want to get on the road so he would shut up! But it was effective, and we made it to my grandfather's house on time to pick up an extra A-frame and a fly, since it was supposed to be in the 90's and sunny all weekend. He told us that we'd have to stop at the hardware store to pick up a carriage bolt and wing nut for the fly, but other than that, everything was there.

That was fine for us, so we happily tossed the canvas in the van and off we went. The directions Contagion gave us were fine, they just took us about thirty minutes out of the way. I thought of it as extra bonding time. Dr. "Special" was in the back seat of the van with his legs propped up on trunks and bedrolls for most of the two and a half hour drive, but other than that everyone was comfortable, although there were a ton of crazy drivers on the highway.

We got there without major catastrophe, checked in, and after some sweet talking by me, we got to camp next to Contagion and Ktreva. (Actually it was because Clan Chattan, our re-enactment group, registered originally as military then no one else showed up. We didn't have any pieces since we were two women and a rookie. So we got to go civilian for this one.)

With some helpful pointers and advice from Contagion and Ktreva , we got our camp set up and they were so kind as to take us into town with them for dinner. We had an awesome all you can eat reasonably priced steak buffet. Then we got some groceries for the weekend and went to the hardware store for the bolt and nut to put our fly up (that's like a front porch, in case you're not familiar with the lingo. I forget sometimes that not everyone's a re-enactor :-) Contagion drops me off at Menard's and Dr. "Special" and I run in to get the items. Our list included:

one 1/2 inch diameter by 3 1/2 inch length carriage bolt
two 1/2 inch washers
one 1/2 inch wing nut

Seemingly normal things to find at a hardware store, right? One would think.

After 20 minutes of searching the two acre store for the "nuts and bolts" section, we finally find the aisle in question. Normally I would have asked an employee for directions, but sadly I didn't realize until later that those 12 year olds in the blue vests were in fact the employees, not an all boys school on field trip to Menard's. So I scan the shelf and find the carriage bolt size I need only to see that they do not sell them individually. My right to buy less at more cost has been taken away and I am forced to buy in bulk at an economy cost. Damn them!

This irks me a bit, but I pick up the bag of bolts and clench them in my hands. Washers are next on my list. I walk down the aisle with Dr. "Special" and he helpfully points out the right item. Again, sold only in packs of 10 for .75 cents. Now I know that may not seem like much, but I am a college student, and knowing that if I were at ACE hardware I could get just two washers for 10 cents, having to pay .75 for 10 really bothers me. What the hell am I supposed to do with the other 8? I don't exactly go through washers like socks or something, you know?

But I take the pack and keep walking. I keep saying to myself, 90 degrees and sunny. You want a fly. Next and last on the list is the one 1/2 inch wind nut. I can get this and get out.

Or not.

I looked around that nuts and bolts area for ten minutes for a sign or box that said "wing nuts." Nothing. Absolutely nothing. Knowing that I'm not crazy and they must have them somewhere I send Dr. "Special" to find a minion. He comes back five minutes later with one of those 12 year olds from the all boys school. After a glance at the name tag it's confirmed that "Dwayne" is in fact an employee of Menards and is "Hardware Certified" I ask him where to find the wing nuts.
After a look of confusion, I explain to him what a wing nut looks like and does and he gets this thoughtful expression on his face (like an idiot gets right before they catch the joke) and he leads us into this back corner of the store. You can tell that no one goes back there from the layers of dust on the shelves and the cobwebs woven throughout the aisle.

"You must mean these" Dwayne says. "They, um, told us about them in training but... " He shoots a glance around. He's sweating bullets. "I think I'd better go help that customer, Ma'am. I hope I helped."

I looked around and there wasn't another customer within a fifty yard radius. Figures. I get the green kid who doesn't know skat about his department and runs at the first sign of actually having to do something like work. Now I'm just downright frustrated.

I find the wing nuts in a box (each one sold individually for once!) but my high hopes are dashed as I read the sizes available. 5/32 inch, 3/16 inch(or something close), 1/4 inch, 3/8 inch. ....wait. read through again. Nope, I was right the first time. You guessed it. No 1/2 inch wing nuts. None. It's not even like they sell them and were just out or something. They didn't even have a spot on the shelf for them! At a freakin' hardware store! I throw the bolts and washers down and start yelling in the aisle. "Who the hell would sell 1/2 in. bolts and washers and not wing nuts?!" Dr "Special" is trying to calm me down, but it's not working. I continue ranting and raving about how am I supposed to get the fly up now and no, idiot, other nuts won't work. I had to do something and it called for speed and decisiveness.

I decided to get the 3/8 in. set of supplies instead of 1/2. How precise could the hole be? Even if it did'nt thread through it would still clamp the two boards together for the weekend. However, I am quite near real anger at this point, and coming from a girl who has been referred to as "she who smiles a lot" that's saying something.

As we walk to the checkout I casually bump into as many aisle displays as possible and trip as many 12 yr old employees as possible. By the time the Doc and I make it to the checkout Ktreva has sent Contagion in to find us, thinking we got lost in the giant store. I explain to him why we were detained, my voice raising slightly with each word until we reach the cashier and I am screaming at the top of my lungs. I stop, look at the cashier, smile and calmly set my things on the counter.

"Did you find everything alright?" She asks.

I blink, take a deep breath, and count to four before I leap across the counter and start pounding her head against the scanner. Contagion and the Doc jump the counter to get me off of her, but her nose is already bloodied and most of the damage has been done. Contagion grabs the items from the counter, hoists me over his shoulder and leaves a fifty on the counter. He tells the manager that it's for the damages and cleanup. They drop me in the back cab of the truck and Ktreva asks "What happened?"

"They didn't have the right size." I say. "So I complained." With that we drove back to camp, the Menard's sign impressed on my brain with that slogan in the commercials "Save big money at Menard's..."

Their slogan should be "We sell 1/2 inch everything else, but not wing nuts just to piss you off!!" Grrr....

To make matters worse, when we got back to camp to put our fly up, the 3/8 inch bolt wouldn't fit through the second hole in the fly pole. It was too big. All of that was for naught, because we still couldn't put up our fly! The irony!

But, other than that the weekend was pretty awesome. Contagion and Ktreva were lifesavers! We forgot so much stuff that it wasn't funny and they were kind enough to loan it to us, (they let us sit under their fly) and they even talked to us a lot! I felt really bad for not being prepared enough (I had forgotten how to put up my own tent, it'd been so long) but they were really nice about helping us out and showing us how to's and stuff. It makes me sad that they left the group, but happy that they are still my friends. I'm happy because they seem happy too, and that's the most important thing.

They even gave us each a piece of trade silver at the end of the event, which almost made me cry. Not only had they lent us their spoon for eggs, dish pails and dish soap for dishes, and their fly for shade, sunblock, Ktreva found an unused mug for Dr. "Special" so he didn't have to use mine, and they shared some of their dinner on Saturday night. Contagion also taught me how to make fire. (I'm a pro now, so watch out!) Of course, he also told me that I wasn't pretty... but I guess I can forgive that since he's my blogfather and all... :-) But don't tell him that, he'll think I'm soft or something and I'm going to milk that one for all I can!!!

There's a ton more of stuff, but I'll save it for tomorrow. I'm going to shower now, because we have running hot water in 2005, and I smell bad.

Oh! There was this guy walking around on sat. (funny story for later) and he took pictures of us. The he came back today and gave us each a copy of our pictures. It was EC Photography. They turned out pretty nice, so I included it on the bottom. Aside from the fact that I look sort of puritan-esque, it's not a bad photo of me...

Thursday, July 07, 2005

Tomorrow is Theatiki! HooYa!

So I'm Uber-excited that tomorrow at this time I will be sitting around a campfire with good friends time traveling back to the 1750's. Oh yeah. Like my blog-dad, mom, and grandda I'm a re-enactor. I still have to read up on the rest of the family, but I bet there's more out there. Pappa Pizza is supposed to be there along with Chastity.

(Pappa Pizza is being a pappa pain in my arse right now though, so he might just accidentally fall of the top of the van as we pass a river and just happen to be wearing cement shoes if you know what I mean... *evil grin*)

Anyway... It's my first time doing Theatiki and I am very excited. Ktreva, Chastity and I are supposed to have tea, and I put together this really awesome tea set. I like to think of it as ... how would you say...eclectic. That is, not a single piece matches any other piece. Prime if you ask me :-) Contagion sent a messenger pigeon to me today to give me the proper directions, so hopefully I don't get lost. I went to the Theatiki website ( ) and it looks like it's going to be a blast. My dad even swapped me his minivan for my pimpmobile for the weekend. (The mini-van holds three times as much gear!)

I'm going to be giving my corset it's maiden voyage so we'll see if it works or if I go back to the drawing board. I also made up a quick colonial jacket that I'm testing. I didn't have time for sleeves, but the weatherchannel said it was going to be really hot this weekend so maybe it's for the better. We'll see I guess. I could always make them there too.

On a different note, I wanted to say thank you to all of my blog family for the welcomes and hellos. I'm completely new to the blog sphere so feel free to offer constructive criticism (as long as you can deal with me bawling my eyes out for two hours on your shirt because I'm inadequate not only as a blogger but as a person... *sniffle*) just kidding :-) Also, I'm trying to read up on all of your blogs, but there are quite a few, so forgive me if it takes me a bit!

And with that, I'm going to look into this haloscan comments thing contagion was telling me about and then go through my trunks one more time before the big day! Yesssss......

Wednesday, July 06, 2005

Well.... so this is my first post and I think it's fitting that I start out with this incredible story of what happened to me yesterday, July 4, 2005.

I spent the first half of my day (well, the first two hours anyway, since I got up at 11 A.M.) grilling in the rain with my father. It was down home bonding time. My future spouse (who will be referred to as Pappa Pizza) was playing video games. After he "beat the crap out of level 3" we decided that it was time to leave the biological family unit and head over to my good friends and mentors' maison for some good scottish partying. It rained, so we sat on the porch and had some good, wholesome conversation. It was a blast! I feel much closer to everyone who was in attendance, and that's awesome.

Later in the evening, everyone (excluding my best friend Chastity who ditched us for newer friends and her beau) went to a small township for some entertainment. You know, like fireworks and stuff. We end up at this little deserted hill by a cornfield under some power lines. Now, Contagion sets up two steel pipes to shoot some slightly illegal bottle rockets out of. It was cool. He even threw everyone a pack so we could share in the fun.

So here we are, shooting off our little bottle rockets. After about 10 minutes Pappa Pizza still hasn't shot one off while I'm well into my 6th or 7th. So, being the wonderful girlfriend I am, I give him the punk and say "Grow some balls and light one off." At this same time my friend Graumagus is returning from his vehicle. A noise is heard and I look up the hill to see a stealthy ex-navy seal turned cherry valley cop creep out from behind his shadow!

Startled, I turn to Pappa Pizza and say, "Umm... you might not want to do that right now..." He looks up at me and then at the ex-green beret and slowly backs away from the bottle rocket. Now, Officer Duncan D. Oughnut saunters down the hill in drunken master style, obviously betraying his six years training in the Shaolin Temple. He approaches our group, wary of the strange number of overly tall men present. I can see the fear in his eyes flash for a second before he puts on his trained samurai face for battle. He sizes us up, and because he is not that tall and has a napoleon complex he immeadiately picks out littlejoe, the tallest of our pride, to do battle with.

Littlejoe stoicly steps up to the former Toughman champion and braces himself for round one.

Cop: Thissus private property you're on, and ComEd is wantin' us to arrest folks. (Why does he has a redneck accent... do you have to ask?) I'm gonna hafta arrest one of y'all, (Here he pulls his little night stick out)... so who wants it? (I'm assuming he means who wants to get arrested... then he looks at littlejoe who meets his eyes in a steely glare) You...(he points with the stick) I saw you light two of em off. You got any I.D.?

Now, right here, Mr. Ex-WWF wrestler thinks he's won the round, but not on Littlejoe's watch. He stares that wanna be sheriff down until the sun sets. He takes ten paces to the former sumo wrestler and quicker than that man can blink, let alone raise his nightstick like he wanted to, littlejoe pulls out his photo I.D. and I saw the ex-FBI agent flinch as littlejoe looks at the nametag and memorizes the letters as the words spill off his tongue.

Littlejoe: Yes sir. (reading the tag) Officer Oughnut. Or should I say, Nough-nuts.

Round one~Littlejoe.

The failed used car salesmen turned cop swallows hard, looks around at the rest of the group, poised like tigers ready to strike. Even the runts have smoke bombs in one hand with lighters in the other. Realizing if he goes a round two he's going to get KOed the failed shoe-salesman takes down littlejoe's info and like the rent-a-cop he is turns tail and runs off with Contagions bottle rockets. He was so scared he didn't even give littlejoe back his I.D. Hopefully it comes in the mail soon, or littlejoe will have to file a lawsuit for the price of the replacement I.D.

Needless to say we didn't shoot any more fireworks off after that, but we did stay and watch the big display done by cherry valley. It was pretty nice. They had some neat ones and some not so neat. But I'd say that even thought the show was decent, it was the company that made the night.

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