Friday, December 31, 2004

Oopsie, I did it again.

Working with homespun yarn is more difficult than storeboughten. The thickness of the yarn has fairly severe variation, from the width of a thick bit of thread to fatter than worsted. I had some difficulty judging size and some other frustrations along the way, but the yarn was gorgeous and the hat it made is well worth having doubled my time from the last hat.

I don't think this picture (click for larger) really does justice to the yarn, which was spun by Joni several years ago (I cannot recall whether she dyed it or bought the wool already dyed). The crown is actually a vibrant burnt orange, absolutely stunning.

Boy, do I ever need to fix my eyebrows. And get a haircut. And wash my face.

Thursday, December 30, 2004

More on Blog Awards

1. A few people have asked, and of course you may use the graphics. If you are able to host them yourself that's great, but if not go right ahead and direct link. I wouldn't complain about getting a link back to my blog, but it's not a requirement or anything.

2. If you didn't get an award, it's because you didn't reply to the original thread (right here). If you still want one, leave a comment here (NOT on the original thread). There is virtually no chance whatsoever that it will happen in 2004, but you'll get one eventually. I promise.

And I think that's all! Unless there are any questions.

Wednesday, December 29, 2004


It is the 2004 awards, and it will be 2004 until 11:59 on Friday, so count this as a success. Please note that the variation in award decorations is entirely based upon how tired I was when I made the graphic.

settling a debate

Mindi is tiny. Teeny-tiny-teensy. I am not exactly huge, but certainly not as tiny as bitty little Min.

Or so I thought.

There is now conclusive evidence that we are roughly the same size. I present Exhibit A, a none-too-flattering photo (click for full size) of us together at Meghan's house:

I admit that I was wrong. Just this once.

To make up for it, here is a picture of a clementine that looks like a butt. Oh my darlin'.

not knitting update

Remarkably, I have not yet given up on my career as a knitter (there should be a more glamourous word for that), but I have paused due to not having fat enough needles.

So I thought I would see if I can still crochet. And since I haven't done anything but a single crochet in years and years and maybe decades, I thought I would just play around and allow myself to fuck up as much as possible and just see what I could do.

Well, I expect you'll all hate me, because this is the result. No planning, no clue, and I got this:

Sunday, December 26, 2004

Knitting Update

I have learned to cast on. Maybe not correctly, but there are stitches on a needle, so I am not going to be fussy.

I already knew how to knit (the actual stitch) but the actual making something skill is still eluding me. I hold my yarn incorrectly, it would seem. But I am very good at ripping out stitches (FUN!) so I expect to have an abandoned half-finished project by the middle of the week.

head over heels

Written a few days ago. Saved as Draft to be finished later. Didn't bother finishing, because the main sentiment is expressed well enough already.

Will and I are like lovesick puppies. We discussed the matter today, and determined that we are equally smitten.

Not with each other (though that too) but with dear Eaf and Grr. We had a lovely group of people over yesterday for the tradition Christmas Mexican feast, and while both of us had a terrific time, we were privately bemoaning the absence of Jess and Heath. We very nearly called them, but Will was drunk and I was asleep on my feet and neither of us could remember how to work a telephone. So, um, merry Christmas, guys! You've been in Texas long enough, come back now.

Saturday, December 25, 2004

Thank God It's Christmas

For one day...

So far, so lovely.

In keeping with tradition, I made pizza last night, which Will, Jenn, and I devoured. After some prep for today's cooking and some cleaning up, Will and I opened our gifts to each other. He gave me two gorgeous sets of PJs from Victoria's Secret - a satin pair (this one, I think, in red) and a cotton pair for actual sleeping - as well as a satin robe (I didn't find pictures of the robe and cotton PJs - will edit later if I find them). I gave him a banjo which has already become the Other Woman in our marriage. After gifts we got in bed and listened to Orson Welles and the Mercury Theatre's A Christmas Carol. As per usual, I fell asleep sometime around the Ghost of Christmas Past.

Woke up early this morning, though not as early as Will, and we did stockings with our coffee. Will got me a calligraphy pen and ink and some little candies and BASEketball, my favorite comedy ever (Dodgeball is a very close second - I like sports movies where people get hurt). Having blown my wad (and his paycheck) on the banjo, I gave him a Pooh & Piglet card and some coupons for things like massages and other stuff that isn't fit to print.

Then we opened our FAT LOOT. Or phat lute. Or something.

Will's parents take the cake this year. Will received 11 DVDs, mainly of werewolf movies, including all three Ginger Snaps movies, as well as some other horror gems. He also got a few CDs. They gave me two gorgeous sweaters, which look so adorable on me that I will just have to post pictures later. They also sent several flour sack kitchen towels, which is exactly what I wanted. I know, I know. They sent more, including some cutesy stuff for both of us, but my head was spinning from the DVDs and I stopped paying attention.

Cassie gave me a cookbook I've been wanting for ages of Southeast Asian food and Stitch 'n Bitch, so next time the kids come to visit I will be sure to join the knitting circle. Poor Heath and Will are going to have to play nicely with each other.

Jamie and Elliot sent me a cookbook and Will a...something. I don't remember, but I know he liked it. We laughed hysterically when Will looked at the cookbook and realized that the author is a Buffy actor and was on the one and only episode of Heat Vision & Jack. (On Buffy he played Jenny's uncle.)

John sent me one of Wil Wheaton's books, and Heath and Jess gave me the other, autographed to the Queen of Pie. And John gave Will the DVD of Baz Luhrman's La Boheme, which Will saw on TV years ago and loved.

Jenn's gift is arriving at LAX on the 11th - she bought Darren a plane ticket to come see us.

Will's sister and her fiance sent us the prettiest silver nutcracker salt and pepper shakers, polar bear cocktail picks and tin holiday plates. I like the plates so much that I am thinking of buying one of those hanging plate racks, which is something that only Grown Ups have.

I know I am probably forgetting something (we totally scored this year), but I'm sure I'll post again later. Right now, though, I have to go check on the Mexican feast that is cooking downstairs.

Friday, December 24, 2004

Holy CRAP.

Six months ago, we had a 19" bubble television. This was replaced by a bad-ass 32" flat screen.

Two days ago, we had the stereo system that I've owned for ten years. The receiver is as old as I am, or close to. It works perfectly, if stereo is your bag. Movies played through the speakers on the television, which are fairly powerful, but again, stereo.

As of this morning, the battle of Helm's Deep* is playing in 5.1 Surround Sound in my living room. The same goes for all of our components, with the exception of the VCR (haven't got the right cable) and the PS2 (not sure what the issue is, but I'll fix it after Christmas).


I would like to state now, for the record, that Matty is my bestest friend in the entire universe. Dear Tyler and Casey, if you have to go to Community College, it is totally my fault. To make it up to you, I am issuing an open invitation to come over and watch movies any time. But none of that Barney crap.

*Sadly, even with the fabulous new sound system, the Uruks lost.

Wednesday, December 22, 2004

Putting the FUN in DisFUNctional.

The other day we saw a sign that said something like "Keep Christ in Christmas." I found it completely ridiculous, since I doubt that even the most staunch of atheists is going to go to the trouble to get the spelling changed. (Though Jess did point out that there is no Christ in Creesmoos, which I can't spell at all.)

I am super-depressed that our friends are gone, so this won't be much of an update. Suffice to say that I adored the 'new' people (not really new, just new in-person) and cried when Katherine left. No slight intended to anyone else - with Katherine, I know that it could be three years again before our next get-together. I mean, I doubt it, because I just won't stand for it, but it was between our last two meetings. Heath and Jess could easily be our best friends. You know, the people that you just spend all of your time with because you get along so effortlessly. Will and Heath in particular clicked, to the point that we think they should team up as a comedy duo or something. And Mindi is at least as lovely in person as I thought she would be, which is pretty damn lovely (and I am not just talking about how pretty she is).

I won't write about the people who stayed elsewhere yet, because there were a lot of them and I am tired, sore (horsies on Monday) and grumpy (see above, re: our friends leaving).

I can't believe it is Christmas on Saturday. I hope Baby Jesus doesn't mind if I am a little put out.

I have to go make my WD Secret Santa present now. I predict that it will be lame, particularly since I have Appendices to watch when I am finished with it.

Tuesday, December 14, 2004

Sometimes - just sometimes - I love stupid people Robbers scared off by Playstation game get jail time

I would comment, but I am too busy rolling around on the floor.

Monday, December 13, 2004


I want a dog, so badly that I feel physically sick right now. We were waiting until we can buy a house, because we don't want to move twice and our current apartment does not allow us to have pets. But the thing is, a house that is even half of what we require is out of our estimated budget by hundreds of thousands of dollars. So I stupidly started looking at rentals, hoping for a home but willing to look at large apartments as well.

No pets. No pets. No pets. Cat OK. No pets. No pets. No pets. Will consider small pet. No pets. No pets.

My favorite: No pets, smoker OK.

Well, that's nice, but I would rather have a Rottweiller than all the Marlboros on earth.

Or a Pit Bull.

Or an American Bulldog.

Or a Boxer.

Or a little mutt.

I don't care, as long as it has fairly short hair and will wrestle with my husband and is loving and likes children.

No pets. No pets. No pets. No pets.

I was so close to tears that I began to think I was going to throw up.

I found a few great places on Craigslist, but they all have immediate move-in. Which is, needless to say, not even the vaguest possibility. For one thing, it is Christmas, and for another, we broke, and on top of that, we have to give 30 days' notice. I was thinking maybe in the spring if our income situation improves. Even the least expensive stuff I found was several hundred more per month than we pay now.

So I am going to get in bed with a book and maybe some chocolate, which I never crave so I must be depressed.

Thursday, December 09, 2004

Public Service Announcement

A martini contains gin, dry vermouth, and olives.

Due to the fact that gin is revolting, it is acceptable to call the same drink, with vodka substituted for the Fowl Juniper, a martini.

Furthermore, there is no such thing as a martini glass; martinis are served in a cocktail glass.

A cocktail is any drink, including the martini, that is served in a cocktail glass. If it has juice of any kind (other than olive), sugary flavored liqueurs, or anything other than the above mentioned ingredients, it is not a martini. Chocolate "martini"? Cocktail. Apple "martini"? Cocktail. Also, gross.

This topic is not up for debate of any kind.

Monday, December 06, 2004

I don't think I have ever done one of these.

Name: Annika
Owner of: myself
Love and relationships: married to my best friend
Religion: is fine in small doses
Politics: should be taken in smaller doses
M.O.: My lawyer has advised me against answering this
Computer: Actual- Dell Dimension desktop. Dream- Apple PowerBook.
Camera: Olympus OM1, Canon PowerShot Elph
Music: Alt country, rockabilly, ska, and Christmas carols
Star sign: Cancer
Chinese astrological year: Horse
Undergraduate: Hahahahaha no.
Master's: I would actually like to have one of these, but apparently they like applicants to have undergraduate degrees. Bastards.
Doctorate: Dr. Bettie? Nah.
Flower: Lilies, mostly.
Instrument: I like the tuba, but cannot lift one.
Fruit: Mmmmmmmmmm.
Dance: Texas Two-Step
Knit: No, but I crochet, badly.
Sew: Capable but not good.
Swear: Like a limber-dicked cocksucker.
Bake: Yes, but my bread skills have disappeared. Being a pie expert makes me feel OK about that.
Cook: I have a weird gene that enables me to cook anything.
Sing: Along
Sports on TV: Baseball. I do not have a team.
Family: Mostly wonderful
Friends: All wonderful
Childhood pet name: Peach Pie
Books: About a thousand
Class: Um. What? I am somewhat classy.
Ambition: To be Shirley Jackson, Nigella Lawson and Nora Charles rolled into one fairly small Sicilian girl.
Sell-out price: One MILLION dollars!
Flavor: Um.
Tattoos: Dragon on left arm, soon to be joined by Motto.
Piercings: A couple holes in each ear, a closed up hole in my nose, and an abandoned naval piercing.
Hair: red, and I will fight you if you argue that point.
Allergies: mild hayfever
Quality of life: Looooooooovely, if a bit poor monetarily
Sense of humor: cynical
Spice: Rowr!
Other languages: I used to know some sign and could probably get my meaning across in a pinch.
Sleep: As much as I can possibly get
Drug: caffeine, nicotine
Cleanliness level: Improving
Bury me: in a lily-white gown...
Lifetime achievements: I'm still working on those.
Game: Terminal Pursuit, Conniption, and Tenchu: Wrath of Heaven
Magazine: Martha Stewart, The New Yorker, Harper's
Motto: Uva Uvam Vivendo Varia Fit

In other news, I wanted some hot cocoa but didn't feel like dirtying a pan (no Swiss Miss for me), so I ate a handful of mini marshmallows and chocolate chips. And by a handful, I mean about six. Blech.

Who wants a Blog Award?

Joy Unexpected: Lighten up, people.

(By the way, the above is a favorite blog that I never got around to blogrolling.)

I didn't get nominated for any Blog Awards. Um, that I know of. I never checked or anything, but I didn't nominate myself and I highly doubt anyone else did. Anyway, I don't care, but I was reading Yvonne's rant on how people are reacting to said awards and I found the whole thing astonishing. She is so right - who the hell cares?

So I am doing my own Blog Awards. The Noirbettie Awards.

Leave a comment here if you want an award. That's all you have to do! I will give each and every commenter an award, just like that. And they will be personalized and wonderful. I might draw you pictures, if I am feeling a LOT less lazy than usual. Hahahahahahahahaha. Sorry.

Friday, December 03, 2004

Pissing and Moaning

People tend to think that because I am small and cute, it follows that I am stupid. By this I do not mean that these people think I'm not smart; it is a complicated distinction. I mean that people seem to feel that they are free to speak to me in a totally condescending manner.

Um, no. That is not acceptable.

If you are reading this, it is almost certain that I am not talking about you. Sure, maybe once you said something that got my panties in a twist, but then I realized that having my panties in a twist creates a chaffing sensation down there, and I'd rather not deal with that, so I got over it. In short, don't worry. I'm talking about people you don't know. Like every boss I have ever had. And not direct superiors, either - I'm talking about the idiots who own the companies I've worked for; I've had some really terrific managers.

A little about me: I am a disorganized wreck. Stop laughing, that's rude! You, get back on your chair, you klutz! And YOU, you will NOT be getting a spanking when you get home, you mean mean man, you will be sent to your room to think about how you made me feel. When I've had office jobs, I have been totally organized, whether it looked like it or not (those post-it notes all over my desk were in order, so lay off). But at home, I am hopeless. The only room that's organized is the kitchen, and that is only true if you don't look in the pantry (I find everything using my sense of touch, and shut up, it works). Well, I guess the bathroom is kind of organized, but it probably wouldn't be if I could move the "furniture."

I try, but we have a lot of stuff in a small apartment. We've gotten rid of a lot of the stuff, and will probably get rid of more (Goodwill should love us at this point, and maybe show the love by calling themselves Goodwillandannika) but I am overwhelmed by piles of papers, and everybody knows that you just can't get rid of papers - there might be something important in that pile of old bills and printed out emails from five years ago! No, really. And I mean it - stop laughing. A few months ago I bought a four drawer filing cabinet. You'd think this would be sufficient, but I threw all the piles in there without sorting through them first. It's not my fault, I was in a hurry. And of course, there are more piles. I don't know where they come from. Possibly outer space. Add on to this that I have boxes and boxes of what might be office supplies but may in fact just be old computer cables that go to god knows what components that I don't even have anymore, and I have the world's worst office. And this is bad, because I really am starting to think seriously about starting a home business (more on that later). I was going to mention just how many books we own, but at the last second I talked myself out of taking a few hours to count them. Later I might count one shelf on each bookshelf and come up with an approximation, though, because I am really very curious. I think the count was about a thousand when we lived in Hillsdale, which was five years ago, but I don't know how much it's actually gone up because we both have some books stored at our parents' houses, and Will has a bunch at work.

As I said, though, I am trying. In addition to getting rid of stuff, I am trying to eliminate clutter (if not actual volume of stuff) by actually, you know, putting it away. In order for this to be possible, I have had to invent places for things to go. Alas, the only way I could think of to do this was to bring in more stuff, in the form of plastic drawered units from Target. If you have been to our house, it is the exact type of unit that Will keeps his action figures in. I bought three for the office. I actually wanted five (what? They're small) but three was two more than I could fit in the shopping cart, so I think you should just be impressed that I left the store with only the wrapping paper left at the check-out (they replaced it for me the next day). Oh, and I need at least one for my sewing stuff and yarn. Why do I have yarn? I cannot knit and barely know how to crochet and the last project I started is still sitting in a basket in our bedroom and that was going to be a Christmas gift last year. But I am under the impression that if I organize my things I will start using them, and if this isn't true I don't think you should be the one to tell me.

At this point you must be wondering (if you haven't forgotten) why I started out this entry by complaining about people treating me like I am stupid. Maybe you think that I am taking the long way to admitting that they are actually right. Well, you'd be wrong! They are scumbags.

I had heard about FlyLady from a few different people, so I decided to check out her website. I went in expecting to be annoyed (based on one of the people I'd heard her name from) and she didn't disappoint. Her #1 instruction is that her readers dress themselves "to the shoes" every day. Now, I understand her reasoning behind this instruction, but I wear shoes many days and trust me - they do not make me any more productive than slippers or even bare feet do! I'm sorry, but shoes (in the house) are for when your feet are cold and you can't find your slippers. I am not entirely anti-FlyLady. I like her "advice" (read: order) that we clean and shine our sinks daily. But where is the useful advice? I have to join the mailing list for her daily reminder emails. Well, I am sorry, but I do not think the best way to eliminate clutter is to voluntarily receive 10-15 emails every day bossing me around. In fact, that sounds exactly like clutter. Plus, one of my goals is to spend less time at my computer, and I can't really do that if FlyBitch is sending me condescending notes every five seconds.

A few tips to avoid pissing me off (incomplete list):

  1. Don't talk down to me.
  2. Make suggestions, not demands, and only when I ask for them.
  3. To be more specific: no unsolicited advice, unless it is in the form of a recipe.
  4. It is OK for me to say that I am incapable of keeping my house clean. It is not OK for you to even so much as insinuate it.
  5. Don't talk down to me.

Thursday, December 02, 2004

And then?

The lady at the Thai restaurant actually said that when I placed my order last night. But I've never seen that movie. Was it funny?

Anyway, I mention this not because we had Thai food, and not because Ashton Kutcher mysteriously has a successful career and a really hot girlfriend, but because I have been playing with the 'Next Blog' feature. I hit seven non-English blogs in a row, then one in English (but not very interesting) and then three more non-English. Interesting. And they were different non-English languages, too.

That is all.

Wednesday, December 01, 2004

So sorry

Anonymous comments have been turned off until further notice. My apologies to non-blogger friends, but I am not in the mood for rude comments from asshats who hide behind the anonymity of the internet.