Monday, September 27, 2010

The Drink

Spent 1.5 hours with Cupcake sandbagging.  My town is having record floods.  The Cannon River through town went from 600 cubic feet per second to over 7000 overnight Friday.  It's receding now but the clean up will be such a pain.  Both the Owatonna and Faribault city sewer treatment plants were overrun, and all that untreated sewage flowed up to Northfield.  At the top is one of my favorite pubs, Froggy Bottoms, under 6 feet of devastating current.  I hope they rebuild.

Saturday was much more fun.  Dinner at LaGrolla in St. Paul with The Minnesota Blogging Club and Loose Women Society.  OK, I just made that up.  This group includes from the left WhiskeyMarie, Pretty Random Thoughts, Mommylisa, Antsy Pants, and me.  The photographer was MG who refused to get in a photo cuz he's a poopy pants.

The food and drinks were fabulous, but so much better was the company.  These women (and MG!) are so fun, and smart, and joyous, and human.  Probably why we found each other on the intertubes.  We've decided our next gathering will be a cookie exchange!!!  JOY!!!!!

Thursday, September 23, 2010


The whole day has felt like the earth is drowning.

First, Minnesota is having torrential rains like I haven't seen since the great Iowa flood of 1993.  The marshland behind our house is filled to the brim.  Good foresight by our city, installing these retention marshes, kept my neighborhood from washing out.  The ducks are loving it.

The second source of water was my eyes, and the eyes of my friends.  Our friend's funeral was today.  Only 49 years old and taken by Inflammatory Breast Cancer.   This particularly brutal form of breast cancer is supposed to be rare, but I personally know two women who have died from IBC in the last 3 years.

She was the center of her family, and leaves 3 kids including an 8-year-old.  We're all just crushed.  She was so vital, so full of energy and humor, so loved.

She was the organizer of my daughter's soccer team for years.  They have played together in summer leagues and school sports since they were about nine.  When your kids are grouped together like that,  you become like a family, parents too.  One of their team lost her Dad suddenly just two years ago - we miss him so.  This kind of grief is getting a little too familiar to these kids.  They were all there together, as were many of the boys team.  They know how to support a grieving friend - they've become quite good at it.  And they had a game tonight, but the field is flooded.

And frankly I feel far too young to be burying friends.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

When Bloggers Meet

Mnmom and Kirelimel Finally Meet!
Grainy photo taken with Johnny C's blackberry

Another good time at MG's Fall Fiesta.  He and lovely partner put on a fantastic spread including roasted pulled pork, tamales, salsas, cakes, apple crisp, guacamole, chips, etc.  We brought along my U of M freshman nephew - he fared very well among all us old folks.  When we dropped him off at his dorm at 10pm I realized his night was just beginning.  We dragged our aged selves home, took some Pepcid, and went to bed.

At MG's party I finally met one of my favorite bloggers Kirelimel!  She and I were separated at birth.  She has all girls too, and her posts could have been written by me 5 years ago.  She's fabulous in person and I can't wait to see her again.

Saturday I'll be seeing MORE bloggers.  Yes it's time for another wonderful Minnesota Bloggers' Get-Together.  The same group from this summer's party, plus a few more like Sheletta.  This Saturday, September 25th, 6pm at La Grolla in St. Paul.  You KNOW you want to be there!

This photo was supplied by MG.  I think I look better grainy and from a distance.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

A Day in the Life

This morning started with an unfortunate but rather hilarious espresso accident.  You may recall I got a lovely cappuccino maker for free.  I hadn't used it in a while, so dove right in without responsible adult supervision.

Heed my advice, where explosive and potentially dangerous steam-under-pressure is involved, get the damn manual.

I pulled something apart when I shouldn't have and created the mother of all coffee explosions on the kitchen counter.  Ever tried to wipe soggy finely-ground espresso beans from every single nook, crevice, horizontal AND vertical surface in your kitchen?  Especially when they've been blown there by force?  Espresso and safety FAIL.

Fortunately no one was hurt.  But I seriously saw my life flash before my eyes.

The morning was redeemed however by popovers with almond butter.  Courtesy of my unauthorized co-blogger Shan, here is the recipe.  They are so incredibly easy and wonderful that they may soon become illegal.  I top them with Almond Butter, which is just a stick of softened butter, about 1T of powdered sugar, and just a drop of almond extract all mixed up.

Today I plan to harvest the onions, carrots, and basil from the garden.  I'll probably end up impaling myself on a tomato support or strangling myself with the hose.

Some days I'm like a walking accident.

Friday, September 17, 2010

As if there's nothing more important to discuss

We have record unemployment, rampant poverty, a middle class that is disappearing faster than the Minnesota Gophers can lose a football game, yet our media finds all kinds of time and energy to hunt down Florida crackpots burning books in a parking lot, and obscure sex symbols getting picked on.

So I'll go real shallow for a moment and join along.

So Ines Sainz, a reporter for TV Azteca is claiming she was sexually harassed in an NFL locker room.  Wow, so much to comment on here!  Like Friday night at Olde Country Buffet.  It must be "Getcher 15 minutes of Fame" week at American newsrooms.

First off, Ms. Sainz, you can't dress the way you do, and pose for girlie mags, and expect to be taken seriously as a journalist.  You have marketed yourself as a sex object, so don't get your tight little knickers in a twist when you are treated as a sex object.  And you can't expect professional-level respect.  That is for professional reporters.  That would be folks who keep the focus on the game and on the players, not on their boobs and unnaturally round butt.

HOWEVER, Ms. Sainz, you can fully expect to be safe no matter where.  You should be able to enter any room and not have a ball thrown at you.  And any woman, no matter what she is wearing, should fully expect that all men will keep their hands off unless outright invited.  I hate that argument that sexy clothes invite assault.  By that same logic any man wearing expensive clothes and/or jewelry, or driving a nice car, is "asking" to be robbed.

To summarize:  no automatic respect as a journalist, but full automatic expectations of safety.

We now return to our regular programming.

Saturday, September 11, 2010


The first step is admitting you are powerless.

I am completely and utterly powerless over fried cheese curds.

It's Defeat of Jesse James Days here, and there is a cheese curd booth right downtown, and it's calling to me like a siren on the cliff.  Even as I type this at midnight in my pj's I'm tempted to jump in the car.  The salty taste, the crunch, the creamy middle, the OH MY GOD MAKE IT STOP!!!

This morning pink cupcake and I went the the craft show, or as Johnny C calls it the crap show.  Lord have mercy I have never seen so much crap in one place.  Even the booths smelled like a dank smoker's house who fries too much hamburger.  And what's with everybody and their dog selling sheet sets at these things!  They even show up at the Home and Builders show.   They just spring up in some stealth marketing ploy.  One of these days I"m going to go out on my deck and find a retired guy there selling cotton sheet sets.

We made the major mistake of stopping and actually playing with some fun toy bows and arrows.  Then the seller pulled me aside and launched into a crazed story about another guy in the area selling the same thing, and how he conned this guy out of his idea.  Creeped me completely out.

But the very minute we were done there, we headed straight for the cheese curds downtown.  You see what I did, don't you?  Took my youngest, hit the craft show first, all in a ruse to cover my true reason for leaving the house.  The good news is she won $10 in Firemen's Bingo.  Being a reasonably good mother I fought the urge to rip the bills from her hand and buy more cheese curds.

My "good" friends can avoid those things.  They can meander through the booths and maybe get a green salad from the Greek booth, or some unbuttered popcorn from the wagon.  And if they are feeling really bad they'll wash it down with a Diet Coke, but you can't drink too many of those because the sodium makes you retain water weight.  Meanwhile I'm hiding behind the porta-potties scarfing down my 3rd cheese curd order of the day while the warm oil drips down my chin and my face glows with orgasmic delight.

"Who? Me? Oh no, I don't really ENJOY the food!  No I just came downtown to be out in the fresh air enjoying a community festival.  What?  Why am I eating cheese curds?  Oh THESE?  Well, cupcake demanded we order some, then she decided against them and I just can't throw away food, so I started eating one.  Oh my now I'm so full I won't be able to walk home!  I just hate all this greasy food.  Why doesn't someone open a carrot and broccoli booth?  I could eat that stuff all day. Burp!  Oh now I'll have to do an extra 45 minutes on the stair master!"

Good thing this event happens only once a year.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

An Epic Decision

I think I might maybe have decided to dump the Vikings and become a Packer Fan.

I know this will be very hard for some of you to understand.  How could she do this?  Has she lost her mind? It's taken sleepless nights, two long days in a sweat lodge, a vision quest, a shamanic cleansing, an MRI, some LSD trips, a conversation with the ghost of Paul Wellstone, a trip to Italy-India-and Bali (oh wait that was Julia Roberts), and several sessions with a Freudian therapist to come to this conclusion.

Remember I told you how the Vikings snubbed me and my public school display?  That was the cathartic event that started it all.  Well that and the whole overpaid-Brett-Favre-not-passing-in-the-last-play-of-the-NFC-championship-game thingy.  And it probably has a whole lot to do with a rich franchise run by millionaires asking Minnesota taxpayers to pony-up because the 60,000 seat Metrodome isn't good enough for them.  Wouldn't you think they'd try to at least GET to the Super Bowl more often before asking?

Anyway, as I'm looking up things for the Packer vs Viking display, I start to ruminate on the differences.  

First and foremost has to be the public ownership of the Packers.  Populist Football at it's best.  I like the idea that a community makes their NFL decisions.  Not some stinking wealthy owner who will extort money from local fans.  Power to the People!

Second, the Packers have actually delivered a few championships.

Third, I look better in green than purple.

So there you have it.  Please try to understand.  And I promise that as a new convert I will not come knocking at your door to ask if you've heard the good news.  I won't ask if you've accepted Mike McCarthy as your savior.  I won't tell you about my visions of Lambeau Field.

Then again, they are cheeseheads for God's sake, and this could all be just a phase.

Monday, September 6, 2010

Labor Day Post

I'm laboring to come up with a post.
Lots of great ideas floating around, just haven't had time to sit down and put them in coherent words.

So instead you get the ubiquitous list of brain garbage

1. One really great consequence of going bust and cutting up your credit cards?  You never get any catalogs in the mail.

2. Coffee tastes so good in the early morning, before the kids get up.

3. School starts tomorrow, and with it the annual avalanche of checks.  Help me.

4. Wendy Williams is a man.

5. Every straight woman needs at least one great gay man in her life.  Two is even better.  Beyond that you need to start sharing.

6. Our Annual Big Ten Tailgater is scheduled!  Come on down October 16th.  Chili cook-off involved.

7. My youngest wears mascara.  My baby is growing up.  I however am still 27.

8. Aretha Franklin's boobs are getting their own area code.

9. Things you can't blame on Obama: the BP oil spill, the recession, starting the Iraq war, crashing home prices, TARP bailouts, rampant unemployment.  Things you CAN blame on Obama:  continuing the war, continued bailouts, no plans for jobs and homeowners.  Like Kirby says: it's time for him to go full-metal FDR on this economy.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Vikings vs Packers

I'm on the 3rd day of a 3-day stretch of 11 hour work days.  The hallucinations should start in any minute now.

Really interesting day at work.  The Middle School hosts a before-school-starts program called W.E.B. - Where Everybody Belongs.  It's involves 8th graders and teachers trained to welcome new 6th graders.  They start at 8am and spend the next four hours breaking into small groups and having the time of their lives.  Each group had a "theme" like super heroes, or ninjas, or birthday hats, or feather boas.  They roamed the building getting tours and the inside scoop from older kids.  The objective of this program is to head off jitters, bullying, etc.

Also today I started on a display case - for fall the theme is PACKERS vs VIKINGS.  A parent volunteer will put it together but I gathered all the materials.  I started calling each franchise in June asking if they'd like to donate materials.  The MN Twins did this for us last Spring.  The PACKERS got back to me immediately and sent a box full of goodies including a beautiful poster of Lambeau Field.

The PACKER fans among the faculty quickly donated plenty of fan items too.

The VIKINGS?  Those numbskulls haven't answered my calls, my emails, nothing.  And I've tried plenty over the last 3 months.  Guess they are too busy chasing Brett Favre around.  I'll remember that when they start whining about wanting a tax-payer funded stadium.  Hey Vikings Front Office - a little PR with the taxpayers wouldn't hurt you know!  You aren't THAT much to brag about.

This could turn me into a Packer Fan.