Friday, May 28, 2004

Poppin' Mad
For the past few months, my Google toolbar has been flawless. It's handy for searching. Doesn't interfere with anything. And best of all, it blocks the pop-up ad onslaught overkill that occurs almost every time I click on a webpage.

It never missed a pop-up. It was great! A pop-free world.

But this week, for some reason, it's only catching some of the pop-ups. I can tell it's still blocking because the counter number keeping track of the number of ads blocked keeps going up. It's at 2764 right now. Can you believe that many pop-up ads have been blocked in probably two months' time??

And yet, for the past few days every time I click on a webpage, I get a pop-up ad. I HATE pop-up ads. Hate Hate Hate Hate Hate them.

I'm not sure why the sudden lack of being able to catch all the pop-ups. I'm pretty sure I haven't downloaded anything new lately. But an email to Google about the situation resulted in a response that it was probably my fault for downloading something that enabled third-party pop-ups, and this is something the Google toolbar can't do anything about.

Thanks, Google.

So now I'm suffering through pop-ups again. Not only that, I'm getting pop-behinds. Have you seen these? They lurk behind your webpage and other open windows on the computer, then when you close everything down there it is. A pop-up that was behind everything all along.

To all 'pop' people (behind or up or otherwise): I will never click on your ads (if I can help it before it gets in my way and I accidentally click on it, which makes me even madder), or use your products for the sole reason that I am so annoyed by the popping in the middle of whatever I'm trying to do on a website. It makes me not want anything to do with you, you evil pop-freaks.

I wish that as many times as I have to close a pop-up in any given day, a pop-up with my disapproving face (on a neon flashing background, of course) would pop-up wherever these people are.

Take that! Ha!


Woodland Creatures
It seems the woodland creatures are finally making peace in my yard. With the exception of the cat that continues to dig and poo wherever it feels my yard needs some digging or pooing. So thoughtful....

But the birds seem happy, feasting on the birdseed I continue to provide for them. They cost more to feed than what I spend on my own food, but as luck would have it this week, I found a 25 POUND BAG of birdseed at Wal-mart for cheap. This far surpasses the value of the 20 pound bag I found at Target. My birds will be fed from Wal-mart from now on. And they are on a one-feeding per week ration.

I will fill the feeders only once a week. It's up to them to make it last.

The squirrels, too, seem happy in the yard. I have two small squirrels who continue to explore the trees and feeders and general yard-ed goodness. They are fun to watch. They seem comfortable and at home in their surroundings. Clearly they have not heard the news of the last squirrel who failed to survive my homestead.

Earlier this week I sat outside to read and I notice a lot of rustling around in the tree limbs overhead. I looked up and saw one of the small squirrels running down the length of a limb with a twig of leaves in his mouth. I saw him do this several times and finally figured out that he was building a nest.

I watched him for awhile. I don't know why this was so entertaining and peaceful to me, but it was. He was working very hard. Several times, he almost tumbled out of the tree while trying to carry a much-too-large twig in his mouth and run at the same time. It was quite funny. He was on a mission.

The ground below was littered with twigs he had dropped in his busy nest-building. He would run way out on a limb, choose the perfect twig, chew it off, and then try to carry the twig back to his nest spot. He'd work in the twig until he got it just right, then go for another twig.

I got up to wander over to the tree so I could better see the nest. But apparently, the squirrel would have none of this. He stopped directly overhead, stood very still, and twitched his tail at me in a very ferocious manner.

Then, he barked.

But it was more like a little chirp, being a young squirrel. I've heard squirrels bark before, and it's really funny. This little guy? Sooo funny. He was defending his pile of leaves, I guess really thinking I would climb up there and steal his nest. He twitched and chirped with great fervor. And amusing intimidation.

I left him alone and went back to my book. He continued his nest building.

The next day I was outside again, reading. I heard him again, running around the tree and dragging twigs along behind him. But this time I noticed he was taking the twigs to a different place. He was depositing them higher up in the tree. Yes, this squirrel was building another nest.

Two nests??? Is this really necessary? Is one a summer home, the other a.... well, second summer home??

I mean, make yourself at home by all means. But really, isn't that a bit much to take over two branches in the tree and build two nests? Was something wrong with the first nest? Not a good location? Drafty? Termites? Bad plumbing?

Who knows.

I figure he probably decided to relocate once I had 'discovered' his lair, being certain I would never see it way up there in the tree. Despite all of his noisy nest building.

I got closer to the tree to look at this one, too. And we had another stare down. He stopped his busy-ness and twitched his tail at me from directly overhead. This time with no barking. I guess he realized I am old and have no intention of climbing my tree to get to his nest. All I needed this time was a good twitchin' and a starin'.

Squirrels are funny. Just so long as they stay outside of my house.


Thursday, May 27, 2004

American Idol.... Out!
I forgot that the best part of WB Superstar USA is that at the end of the show, host Bryan McFayden ends his hosting by saying, "McFayden... gone!"

It's sooooooo funny!!

I believe one of my earlier posts regarding this season of American Idol held the fear that we would one day have an Idol named Fantasia. This was something I just could not conceivably condone. Well, it's taken the remainder of the season for me to accept and be okay with that possibility. Because we do, in fact, now have an Idol named Fantasia.

What an odd show last night. It first seemed to think this event was of the caliber of the Oscars, as the show was held in the Kodak Theater, home of the Oscars. And there was the whole red-carpet pre-show thing going on. I mean, how out of work is Jennifer Love Hewitt to accept a gig standing out in the heat emcee-ing the rejected idols performing a concert for a random crowd of bystanders? And of course, the three 'stars' Christina Christian and her strange and sudden afro managed to snag on the red carpet for interviews were Nicole Ritchie, Ray Romano, and Sharon Osbourne. So it wasn't exactly like the Oscars. But pretty darn close.

It was good to see some of the old Idol favorites again: JPL, Matt Rogers. Unfortunately along with them came Jasmine and Leah. But at least now I know I don't have to waste the money on tickets to the American Idol tour. I saw all I needed to see last night. Most of it in fast-forward.

Congrats to Fantasia, American Idol 2004.

Dude, she totally broke a shoe from the excitement. That is one excited Idol.


Wednesday, May 26, 2004

It's a good thing I don't care anymore...
Because due to a VCR-taping-forgetfulness malfunction, I did not, in fact, tape American Idol last night. The Universe dealt a cunning blow by disabling my near perfect record of taping the absurd amount of TV I watch in any given week.

I have therefore missed the final showdown between Diana and Fantasia. I have no doubt it was quite a spectacle to behold. But alas, I can only rely on my power through the Alliance to trust that the outcome will be as it should be.

The Universe almost won the evening completely, as my taping mishap also disabled my taping of WB Superstar USA. But I just happened to be home and decided to watch it despite the taping of it, only noticing halfway through the show that it wasn't taping anyway. I missed the first ten minutes, but I will somehow survive without it. Or watch it later this week when the WB reruns it 108 times.

Sadly, Frank was voted off the show, along with Ross and two others whose names escape me. I really thought Frank, in his high-heels, bare midrift and navel ring, would be the one to go all the way. But fortunately we still have JoJo, who doesn't sing in the third person even though he only speaks about himself in the third person. And Jaime, who reads the lyrics off of her hands as though no one can see her do this. And Omar, who may be able to pull of the Clay Aiken thing yet. And a few other fine contenders.

I would really enjoy a quote list of the judges' comments. I wish I had last night on tape to go back and watch again. They say the best things, but I'm laughing so hard I forget them the next minute when they say something else sarcastically fabulous.

I am more certain than ever that Vitamin C is my long-lost sarcasm twin (aside from my Alliance twin), and that Briggs is the sarcastic man I am destined to be with.

Or at least stalk for a long time.


Tuesday, May 25, 2004

The Bad News is....
You can't sing.

The good news is... you're really hot and I'd like to take you to dinner.

This comes courtesy of WB Superstars USA. And if you didn't watch it last week or last night, you can watch it tonight. A whole new episode.

Last night-
- JoJo continues to only speak of himself in the third person. And he's serious.
- Frank insists his superstar makeover needs to help him dress even more like Britney Spears. And he's serious.
- Omar, the large African-American finalist, requests his makeover to make him look like Clay Aiken. And he's serious.

You don't want to miss this stuff. It's just too good.

I can't believe I didn't invent this show. It's too good for me not to be a part of it.


Monday, May 24, 2004

I Love Love Love Love Love It
Ok, this is my new favorite TV show. WB Superstar USA.

It's probably the meanest thing I've ever seen on TV, but it's sooooooo funny. If you haven't seen it, go watch it now. The WB has rerun the first two episodes at least 108 times in the past week. It shouldn't be hard to find and watch. Watch it.

My new best friend is Vitamin C. I have no idea what she ever sang as a recording musician-type person. But on this show as a 'judge'? She's my new best friend. She speaks my kind of sarcasm.

My new boyfriend is Briggs, some TV producer guy that I've never heard of, and another of the 'judges'. Also a speaker of my kind of sarcasm. I may be in love.

The funniest thing is that the judges have to keep a straight face during the really terrible auditions. They have to think of things to say that communicate that these horrible singers are the most talented people they've ever seen. Plus, the judges have to look completely bored and appalled when the truly talented people audition. It's as funny to see them tell a good singer she's bad and why, as it is to watch them tell the bad singers that they are good and why.

My favorite quote so far, from Briggs, to a 'bad' candidate:
"You put the 'uperstar' in superstar."

Sooooooooooo great!

I don't really see how the show will work once the contestants get together for the singing in front of an audience. But I'm so intrigued to find out, I can hardly wait for a new episode tonight.

And yes, nothing would make me happier right now than to be a guest judge on this show. Sign me up as a 'highly regarded recording executive in the industry', so far behind the scenes that no one would know if they've heard of me or not. It could only add to the show that I actually have no judging expertise other than having watched all reality television on television, and I am the most sarcastic and straight-faced person on the planet.

I would kill as Superfluous Unqualified Undercover Judge #4.

This is definitely proof that I am a horrible person deep down inside. I'm enjoying this way too much.


Friday, May 21, 2004

Feed Me
So, blog regular timsamoff suggested I embrace and embark on this thing called an RSS feed. I understand what it does, I'm just not sure of the point, or if it it will cause my blog to explode or something.

But, I'm in to experiment with it for awhile. So here's the link. And it's also listed as the new FeedBurner link to the right in the Links section. Do whatever it is you do with this new-fangled RSS business.

May we all prosper greatly from it.


My Mouse is Andy Kaufman
In light of this, I can only conclude that Algernon the Office Mouse is likely pulling an Andy Kaufman-esque stunt.

Algernon has disappeared, and has been missing for several days now. He has eaten none of the poison and has not been fatally injured in any of the traps set for him.

Therefore, I can only conclude that he has chosen to fake his death in a massive stunt to fool me into thinking he is gone or dead, and he will someday return when I least expect it, in a way that will shock and awe us all.

It only makes sense.

He's that smart and sneaky and mean.


Thursday, May 20, 2004

Did you see how I tricked the Universe? We, The Alliance?? We totally tricked the Universe by a) being nonchalant about American Idol this week, an 2) predicting the opposite outcome.

HA! The Alliance rocks.

Our ploy totally worked and we finally rid the world of the anti-musical non-stylings of Jasmine "Jazzy" Rasmussen. Er, Trias. Whatever.

I have no comments to make about the 50 minutes of non-results show leading up to the victorious announcement of Jazzy's departure. We've heard Tamyra sing at least one of those songs before. And the other guy? I was out in the garage trying not to listen. I still heard him. I wasn't pleased.

Next week, showdown between Fantasia and Diana. Clearly we want Diana to win, since Clay has shown us that second place is the way to get more recognition. Has anyone heard from Ruben lately? Um... no. Which is why we want the same to happen to Diana. Let's hope she wins.


Wednesday, May 19, 2004

I actually don't care anymore
American Idol has finally broken me of the will to care about the outcome of this season. Just end it already so we can start over again in the fall.

Last night, Fantasia blew everyone else away because she is a far superior performer than the other two. Whether you like her or not, she's the better talent. No question.

So after much praise was lavished upon Fantasia throughout an evening of the most interesting and odd mix of song selections ever, and after she gave a lap dance to Clive Davis (who didn't object, by the way - you know you saw it!) I predict that she will go home tonight.

We will be left with a finale duel between one girl who cannot sing a note in tune but has somehow brainwashed all of Hawaii into keeping her on the show, and one girl who we'd all prefer would quit singing so that we don't have to watch her bounce around the stage anymore.

No good can come from this.

Well, very little good can come from this. Just think, in a week or so Ryan Seacrest won't be on our TVs 108 times a week for at least the rest of the summer.

That will be good.


Tuesday, May 18, 2004

Come to think of it....
Sometimes I do wake up in the morning wanting to wear my giant swan dress to work.....

I don't really know the point of this, but thanks to papergraffiti for the link to something that we should all take time to explore about ourselves: which famous people do we look like?

Seems I look like a cross between Bjork and Juliette Binoche and some other random person I've never heard of.

I'd like to tribute the accuracy of this analysis to the use of part of a picture from Halloween- a picture that definitely displays my inner, and til now hidden Bjorkness.

Tomorrow is definitely Wear Your Swan to Work Day.


More Mouse Capades
Although strangely, there's not really anything new to report.

Algernon is still winning.

Last night I decided to leave him an entire peanut butter cracker, in his trap/dinner table. Yes. The whole entire cracker. I figured maybe he'd eat the whole thing and explode. Or stay there long enough to spring the trap. (I keep saying that hoping it will one day happen, even though deep down I know that trap is never going to spring except for when I spring it, or when the cleaning guy vacuums.)

However, the entire peanut butter cracker was too big for the trap. So I reduced the serving size of the cracker to 3/4 cracker. Or in terms of bunnies, 1/2 bunny. I mashed it onto the trap, set it gingerly, and walked away.

Today, I arrived to the same amount of cracker on the trap. Algernon apparently was not in the mood for peanut butter cracker for dinner last night. Nor was he in the mood for the poison I continue to leave for him night after night. He's becoming picky, I think. Too good for my food.

So, Algernon still roams free. Unless, (and this is my hope) he ingested too much gum from the weekend's food offering, blew himself up into a mouse bubble, and exploded somewhere where I can't see him.

I'm pretty sure that's what has happened. I haven't seen him in a day or so.

But until I know for sure, I will continue to ponder the mouse situation. I've brain-stormed and contemplated what to do, and what it all really means. Perhaps Algernon isn't even real. Perhaps he is the ghost of a mouse that used to live here, and he has returned to haunt me and my office. Maybe I am supposed to befriend him, and let him be my spirit guide. Perhaps he is here to enlighten me of something, or about someone.

Or maybe he's just here so I have lots of stuff to write about to entertain you people.

Eh. Whatever.


Monday, May 17, 2004

Smells Like Jordan Spirit
Today I saw a big 18-wheeler truck with Michael Jordan's face on the side of it. Like a floating Michael Jordan head on a white truck. On the back of the truck was the back of Michael Jordan's head, as though if you were behind the truck you were watching Michael Jordan walk away from you.

Before I was close enough to see if the truck was labelled as to what might be inside the truck, I had to wonder why Michael Jordan is cool enough to get his head on several sides of an 18-wheeler truck. Is he touring the country in an 18-wheeler, like the Michael Jordan World Tour? Was he selling meat now, like Bo Pilgrim? Or perhaps he's a new spokesmodel for some other company that hauls things in big trucks?


Once I got close enough to the truck, I saw that the side of the truck said Michael Jordan Cologne.


This was an 18-wheeler full of cologne, smelling like Michael Jordan. I knew he had cologne, I just didn't realize it got to ride around in a giant truck with Michael Jordan's floating head all over it.

Then I wondered what it would be like for a truck full of the Essence of Michael Jordan to tip over. All those bottles would break. Like a tanker spill. Except it would be cologne. I can't imagine that would smell as good as one would hope a tanker truck full of cologne would smell. It would have to be overwhelming, requiring gas masks for those called upon to contain the spill. It would be a mushroom cloud of Michael Jordan's smell. We would have to block off the area until the cloud dissipated. What is the half-life of the Spirit of Michael Jordan, anyway?

I guess mass quantities of cologne gets from place to place in an 18-wheeler, so maybe that's not odd. I just never thought about it before. But how else would it move about the country? It just seemed weird that Michael Jordan's cologne gets its own Michael Jordan-headed truck. Like it's fancy, or something. I mean, I'm sure somewhere in the country there is an 18-wheeler with several J.Lo heads on it, transporting mass quantities of Glo. Because this is the way fancy cologne travels.

I've never heard anyone say they wear Eau de Michael Jordan. Or say they even like the smell of it. Is there a need for an entire 18-wheeler truck full of the stuff?

I mean, really?? That's a lot of Jordan Spirit.


The suspense...
Yes, the mouse story continues. He somehow ate the M&M out of the chewed-up piece of gum, while not leaving himself behind in the trap. But he did leave behind some serious teeth marks in the gum. So at least I can feel good knowing that I made him work really hard for his M&M meal.

He also still has not touched the poison 'dessert'. I'm beginning to take offense that he doesn't appreciate what I've prepared for him.

So today, I am in a place of contemplation and reflection about how to remedy the mouse situation. Clearly, I've been too hasty. I need to take time to listen and understand, then proceed.

Or else my head might explode because I'm so mad and frustrated with Algernon.


Friday, May 14, 2004

I refuse to admit defeat....
But this mouse is really pushing me towards waving the white underwear of surrender.

I'm not there, yet. But I'm about to start looking for some tighty white-ies to wave in defeat.

Last night's plan was chewing gum. Yes, chewing gum. Here's the logic: Algernon the Office Mouse seems to love going to the trap in search of whatever meal I've left him for the night. We've not experienced a problem getting him to the trap. He's not missed a meal, actually. The problem lies in his ability to get the food off of the trap without springing the trap. Therefore, I reasoned that I needed something that would entertain him longer at the trap, causing him to work really hard to get the food from the trap, which would in turn spring the trap upon him while he works away at the food on the trap.

What is stickier and harder to work with than chewed up gum? Not much, my friends. Not much.

So, I chewed a piece of gum and mashed it onto the trap. Oh yes, I did. Well, I sprang the trap first, using my trusty poking pen. I was smart to use the pen, because as I poked the trap with the pen, the trap snapped onto the pen and broke it in half. IN HALF. Obviously the trap works, and I was very glad that the pen was not my finger. But I'm still completely baffled as to why the trap cannot do the same thing to the mouse.

Plus, now I need a new trap poking pen. Stupid mouse broke my pen......

Anyway, I mashed the gum onto the trap, then set the trap gingerly. And I mean, with great ginger. It was so precariously set that breathing on it the wrong way would surely have sprung it. I felt sure the gum on the precarious trap would catch the mouse tonight.

It had to work. But maybe I should stop saying that, as I do not think it means what I think it means. And I'm always wrong when I'm sure.

I left the 'dessert' poison packet in it's place beside the trap. I figure after a nice meal of chewing gum, the mouse will surely desire some dessert. If his head is still attached to his body, that is....

My final piece of the plan again involved a sacrificed M&M. I had dropped another M&M on the mouse-infested floor, so I again deemed that one as mouse bait. But instead of putting it on or near the trap, I set it in a special location at the edge of my desk. I wanted to see if the mouse would venture up during the night and steal an unattended M&M from my desk.

Research, you see. This will help me understand the mouse, and know better how to catch it.

So, I left last night with all these traps and research devices set, knowing that the gum would trap me a mouse and I would return today to be mouse-free.

But, the gum seems to be a flavor preferred by four out of five mice, as Algernon nibbled just enough of the gum to now have minty fresh breath, wherever he might be..... albeit not in the trap......

The gum was nibbled, but not gone. The trap was moved a bit, but not sprung. The poison was untouched, and therefore not doing anything useful. And the M&M on my desk was still on my desk, although I suspect Algernon climbed up on my desk and licked it, then left it just to torture me.

I can only hope Algernon messes up soon. The ones who think they are the sneakiest always mess up eventually.

Hopefully Algernon's mistake will involve getting stuck in the gum on the trap, causing the trap to trap him, while landing on the poison packet and absorbing it through his fur.

It has to work...


Thursday, May 13, 2004

For Fans of the Mouse....
You can relax. He is fine and up to his same old tricks as usual.

Strangely, over the past week, I think the mouse is receiving more fanmail and support than I am on my own blog. People actually want the mouse to win, so that this story continues.

I'm so glad you all find this incredibly entertaining. I wish many mice upon you and your kin.

So, last night I actually did flip over the packet of poison, (to hide MOUSE KILLER), and I wrote 'dessert' on it in big black letters. Algernon the Office Mouse can read, apparently. I wanted him to know I'd provided something good for him to eat, in the form of dessert poison.

Early in the day yesterday, I dropped an M&M on the floor. Under normal circumstance I would have no problems picking up the M&M from the floor and eating it. The candy shell protects the M&M from various germs or funk that would otherwise ruin a non-protected food item dropped to the floor. However, since the mouse has been running amok in my office, it is quite possible he has stepped everywhere in here. So, the M&M that fell to the floor was deemed ineligible to be eaten by me, as mouse funk has contaminated every nook and cranny and molecule of floor in my office. I decided the mouse had won himself another M&M for the trap.

I left last night with the M&M mashed tightly onto the trap, hoping it would force Algernon to work really hard for the delicious candy treat, resulting in the trapping of Algernon in the trap. Next to the trap lay the 'dessert' of mouse poison in a packet.

TWO traps. Foolproof. This had to work.

This morning, once again, the M&M was gone. The poison packet was obviously untouched. And the mouse was nowhere to be found.

He won another M&M from me.

This. Means. WAR.

I have no idea what my next move is. But it may involve some sort of flame thrower, followed by a trip to an insane asylum.


The Universe is winning.....
....and should be the next American Idol. Because that would be better than Jasmine as the next American Idol, even though I hate the Universe right now.

There are times in life when the Universe just flat out slaps me in the face. A lot. Often. With both hands.

It seems we are in the midst of one such time.

First, there's the mouse problem. I will get to more on that later.

Second, there's the American Idol problem. It seems the Universe is out-controlling the Alliance when it comes to voting, and that is just completely unacceptable.

Now, I actually missed the show last night due to a freak VCR-taping malfunction. Again, I blame the Universe. But, apparently the Universe planted five phones in every household in Hawaii, and not only did Jasmine somehow manage to not be voted off the show, she didn't even make the Bottom Two.

She got more votes than Fantasia and LaToya. And then, so I hear, LaToya went home.

ARE YOU PEOPLE INSANE!?!??!??!?!??? I am SOOOOO mad at you right now.

Plus, I missed Donna Summers singing 'Last Dance'. There is only one thing better in this world than me singing karoake 'Last Dance', and that is Donna Summers singing live 'Last Dance'. I missed it. Soooo sad.

I really don't know where to go from here. Clearly, our support needs to shift to Fantasia, but the Universe clearly likes to take what the Alliance wants and wreak havoc. We could go back to putting our efforts against who needs to leave, but Jasmine seems impervious to everything we throw at her. I dare say, she's stronger than Carmen Rasmussen. It's frightening.

Since we have such a huge American Idol problem, plus I continue to have an annoying mouse problem, I should maybe make the best of these situations by training Algernon the Office Mouse to dial his phone in support of votes for Fantasia next week.

I just don't know what else to do. I blame you people.


Wednesday, May 12, 2004

Mouse. Can. Read.
I'm convinced the mouse can read.

This morning I arrived to work to discover that Algernon the Office Mouse had gone nowhere near the packet of mouse poison. It was untouched, and there was no mouse-ness to be found.

Now, don't be so quick to assume Algernon is gone. He's hidden before, and always comes back when I get comfortable again. I know he's still here. He's just toying with me.

I can only conclude that he left the poison alone because he saw 'MOUSE KILLER' really big on the package, and he knew not to eat it.

I also think he has gotten his own phone with his own extension, because today I heard a desk phone ring from that corner of my office.... and there is no phone in that corner of my office!!

There is also not another office near that corner of my office. There is a wall, then empty space into the gym. The only logical and reasonable conclusion is that Algernon thinks he works here because he can read, so he got his own phone. He's trying to take over my office in a Mouse Coup and force me out of my job. (truthfully, he could probably do it better than I do).

But that's not the point! It's my office! My job!! MY M&Ms!!! Get out!!

I am weary. I thought the poison would work, first try. My brain has never been challenged in this way before. Algernon is making me think in ways I've never had to think before.

Kudos to him for that. He is a worthy opponent.

But now, it's on...

Tonight I will leave a snack for him in the trap, luring him to the trap where he will no-doubt dine, but not get trapped. Then he will want dessert. I will flip the MOUSE KILLER packet over, so that MOUSE KILLER cannot be seen, and I will write DESSERT on the packet. Algernon will read that the packet is a yummy dessert. He will eat. He will then be off-ed.

This intricate plan has to work.

Dessert has two 's-es', right? I'm sure Algernon is a stickler for spelling.


Hot Stuff?
I'm not sure. But admittedly, Disco Night is always my favorite theme night on American Idol. So I can't complain too much. It was fun.

Although, I cannot believe that with all the Donna Summers, and the actual Donna Summers being there as a guest judge, no one sang 'Last Dance'. Maybe they didn't want to tempt fate and subliminally plant that it might be their 'last dance' on the show into the minds of voting Americans. But whatever excuse there was for no 'Last Dance', it is my favorite karaoke song to sing. And I am further convinced that if I was allowed to be on the show at my old age, I would be going home with the crown of Miss American Idol 2004 tonight, after a mind-blowingly fabulous performance of 'Last Dance'. They wouldn't even have to finish the rest of the season. I'm that good.

Good thing I'm not on the show, to give these last four contestants a decent shot.

Jasmine was so horrible that not even kind, sweet Donna Summers could think of anything good to say. That's really, really bad. Plus, she crimped her hair. Did you hear me?? She crimped her hair!! America, if Jasmine is our next American Idol because all of Hawaii has five phones in every household, I will never forgive you.

Never. Forgive. You.

Diana was surprisingly not as annoying, but still annoying to me. I think she will always be annoying to me. I am upset that she won the honor of best song of the night. Especially since that award doesn't exist and doesn't matter.

Fantasia is still my favorite, although I'm happy with LaToya, too (although I think I saw her buzz-short hair crimped, too. An amazing feat, if this is true). The Alliance will continue to use our powers for the good of promoting these two, rather than for the evil of working against those we don't want to win.


And please let Simon go last again. It was just weird for him to get to speak first.

It makes no sense.

Much like hair crimping.


Tuesday, May 11, 2004

I've Gone and Done It
There's no turning back now. No more playing around with the mouse and that stupid trap-less trap.

I've brought in mouse poison, and it now awaits him in his corner. Unless he is smart enough to read that the outside of the packet says 'Mouse Killer' really, really big, it's only a matter of time until he eats the poison and dies.

And strangely, I feel really bad right now. Guilty. I'm not a good person.

The package says it, really, really big: MOUSE KILLER.


I've never killed anything larger than a large bug (technically I did not kill the squirrel or the bird- they died on their own or with the help of an evil cat). Can I handle being responsible for taking the life of a mammal, albeit a small, disgusting rodent?

True, I hate that mouse. I want him GONE. AWAY FROM ME. OUT OF MY OFFICE. I don't want to see, hear, touch, or be near him ever again. He has tortured me for nigh on a week now. He even stole an M&M. That is completely outside of the boundaries of battle.

He deserves to die. To avenge the death of the M.

But does he really?? I mean, he's definitely given me a lot to write about this week, albeit the writing was my coping mechanism for dealing with the terror of a mouse running rampant across my desk at random. And true, he carries at least 108 diseases and is just completely gross and icky and mouse-y.

But can I live with knowing I killed him? That we had this back-and-forth thing going, one challenge extended to the other, and suddenly I got deadly serious about it, instead of just playing around? Was I only playing around before? I mean, we did name him: Algernon the Office Mouse. Do I need to warn him that I've upped the stakes? Does he think he's my friend? That I'm feeding him crackers and candy because I like him?

Eh, we'll see if he outsmarts the poison. If he does, THEN it is definitely ON......


Monday, May 10, 2004

If only I was MacGuyver....
I would have caught the mouse by now, with some ingenius mouse-catching plan hatched from the objects in my office. And a piece of chewing gum.

On Friday, this was the situation. But instead of leaving for the weekend with the trap empty, I decided to pull out the big guns.

I decided to sacrifice one M&M.

My reasons for this are as follows: Several people had told me that I should try candy in the mousetrap, as mice like candy. Now, the problem hasn't been that the mouse doesn't like the food offerings I've left for him on the trap. It's been that while he is enjoying the feasts I've prepared for him, he is somehow chowing down without springing the trap. It's all very annoying.

But, I decided to try candy, thinking that maybe candy has some magical powers that would magically trap the mouse. And what more magical candy exists than the sweet chocolatey crunchy goodness of a plain M&M? None that I know of, my friends.

I'm all about the M&M.

But, it occured to me, do I really want to give up an M&M? These small chocolate wonders are what get me through the day. I love them. I am them. I'm fairly certain I'm made up of at least 75% M&M. Can I part with one to trap a mouse? This was a dilemma. I would have to weigh the value of one M&M versus the peace that would result from ridding my life of the mouse.

And then I thought, what better way to get the mouse? The one thing I love most being the downfall of one thing I hate most. It seemed right. Justified. The perfect solution....

I would use an M&M to catch Algernon the Office Mouse.

I selected an M&M and went over to the trap. I sprung it before I did anything else, knowing that the second I got anywhere near it, if I did not spring it before trying to touch it, it would rip one of my fingers off in a cruel display of irony.

I then bit off half the M&M and proceeded to mash it onto the end of the trappy part of the trap. I mashed like I'd never mashed before. Yes, it was painful to see the M&M in such a state. But, the M&M knew what it was being called to do. I needed it to help me. It was an honorable death. A noble M&M.

I left the office on Friday full of confidence that this M&M would catch the mouse. There was no possible way this wouldn't work.

No. Possible. Way.


This morning I arrived back in my office to see ..... nothing. Again.

No M&M. No mouse in the trap.

I lost a perfectly good M&M to the mouse.

I am very, very mad.

And I hope he doesn't discover my hermetically sealed stash of M&Ms hidden away in my desk. Should he venture to steal more M&Ms from me, he will invoke the true power of The Tyrant and wish he'd never been born.....

Or at least he'll see me cry.


Friday, May 07, 2004

Just when I was beginning to get comfortable.....
He's back.

I haven't seen him, but I've seen that I haven't seen him. That's worse than seeing him.

I had convinced myself that Algernon the Office Mouse had packed up and moved to another residence, somewhere other than my office. A sunnier location. Perhaps a beach house, or maybe a wintery getaway somewhere north, away from the Texas heat. Someplace where mice go when they know they are no longer welcome here.

I've gradually begun to relax in the office a bit more, settling back all the way in my chair. Putting my feet back on the floor instead of keeping them up in the chair with me, away from mouse traffic. Sitting close enough to my desk (where Algernon tends to enjoy the occasional romp over papers and desk objects) that I can actually reach my computer keyboard without pulling a muscle in my back. I even stopped looking for him 108 times a day, which was necessary for my plan to keep an eye on him so that I know where he is at all times. I've trimmed that number down to no more than ......... 50 times a day.

People, it's still necessary to always be aware. Safety first.

But, this morning I came in and noticed that the cracker is once again gone from the trap, and yet the trap is mouseless. It seems Algernon returned during the night, ate the cracker off of the trap again, and managed to not get himself trapped in the trap yet again.

Now, my question is that can we really call this thing a mouse trap if it COMPLETELY FAILS TO TRAP A MOUSE?? MORE. THAN. ONCE!!!

Seems to me, it's just a fancy dinner table. The perfect height to serve many meals to a hungry, and don't forget - evil - mouse.

Maybe if I don't put anything else in the trap, he will starve to death over the weekend, and just kind of fall onto the trap, rendering himself "trapped".

One can only hope.

Until then, I'm keeping my feet off the floor.


The One With The Obligatory Friends Post
I feel that if I do not write something about the last episode of Friends, I will get no hits on my blog today. It's the over-hyped spectacle of the century.

So what is there to say about it? It was a good ending. Truthfully, it was kind of blah for me. Not a lot of drama, not a lot of laughs. It was nice. Funny at times. Sentimental. Sweet. Everything seemed to work out the way it should. That's all well and good.

Is it strange that I think I was most touched and saddened by the death of the fooseball table? I love that table...

I did have some questions and comments, though, after it was all said and done:

1. In what universe is it possible to watch twins being born, then take them home with you five minutes later? I know we only had an hour to work with, but still. That's a little out there.

2. What happens to Joey? I mean, yeah he gets to keep the chick and the duck (jrs.), but he's supposed to be in L.A. this summer for his new show. Can a chick and a duck live in L.A.? What makes him go out there? This is a loose end. I need to know what's up with Joey.

3. How did Chandler and Monica suddenly have enough stuff for two babies, when they were only expecting one? They had the two-baby stroller, enough clothes. And one of them was a girl, while the other was a boy? Sometimes TV-Land is just not realistic.

4. Does Rachel have a job? She turned down going back to Ralph Lauren so she could take the job in Paris. But then she just decided to not go to Paris, last minute. What will she do now? Did she tell the Paris people she won't be there? Did she get her stuff off the plane?

5. Why doesn't Joey get to keep the Big White Dog? Monica hates it anyway. That should have been Chandler's parting gift to Joey- giving him back the dog.

6. How was Joey sitting on the paint from the sign, and also sitting on the couch with paint on his butt WITHOUT getting paint on the couch? Maybe there was a deleted scene where Monica freaks out about the red butt stain on her couch.

7. Why did they each have a key to the apartment when I've never seen any of them lock or unlock the door in ten years? Not once. Never. It locked that one time and they had to find the key in Joey's drawer, but then it was broken down. And Monica and Chandler locked it once for something where they ended up on either side of the door. But this does not explain why they all had a key to the apartment that was never truly locked.

8. How was it possible for Monica to leave the empty apartment without cleaning it one last time? Was it so clean from all the years of cleaning that it just didn't need to be cleaned anymore?

9. Since Rachel is technically homeless, will she move in with Ross, or back in with Joey? If she moves in with Joey, what happens to the chick and duck (jrs.)? They were promised their own room.

10. Did Phoebe ever change her name back from Princess Consuela Banana Hammock? I kinda like that name. So if it's available, I may claim it as mine.

These are my questions.

And, Happy End o' Friends. I hear the rest of the world functions outside of 7:00pm on Thursdays. We should check it out.


Thursday, May 06, 2004

All the ladies....
I didn't watch the show last night, but apparently George was booted from American Idol this week. That leaves only the ladies as the Final Four.

I really have no opinion on that, except to say that I'm glad we still have LaToya and Fantasia.

And if our next American Idol is Jasmine or Diana, I will remove my celebrity endorsement from the show for future seasons of AI.

This will ultimately cause the show to tank, and no one wants that. Where else would Ryan Seacrest go?

We can't have him roaming freely, people. Think of the horror of a Free-Range Seacrest. So you just think about that when you vote during the remaining weeks of this season.


Wednesday, May 05, 2004

Buns and Thighs!!
Hands down, best blog title ever.

What I love best about my friends is that they are endless sources of entertainment for me. Okay, it's not what I love best, but it's a nice perk. It's fun for me because many times I feel like I have to be 'on' and entertain with my sharp wit and engaging charm. Always the entertainer.....

Um, yeah.

Anyway, so when my friends do something that provides entertainment with little to no effort from me, I am reminded why I keep them.

This story begins with an infomercial. Yes, an infomercial. Those things on TV that last for thirty minutes or so, promoting 'amazing', 'exclusive offers' for products and contraptions that legitimate stores know better than to try and sell. You've seen them: that Bowflex thing that Walker, Texas Ranger and Christie Brinkley promote. The Gazelle-glidey thingy that the guy with the ridiculously long ponytail invented and is very excited about. The Proactive skin system that Vanessa Williams speaks very highly of.

(Actually, if that skin stuff really works, someone let me know. I'm intrigued.....)

One day I get word from a friend (we'll call her Friend A), to let me know she has made a purchase. I like to give Friend A the benefit of the doubt as being generally sensible when it comes to life and money, although rumor has it she hasn't balanced her checkbook since 1999. But, sometimes she does things that (I am sure) are off the wall for the sole purpose of entertaining me and the rest of her friends. And the checkbook issue is completely irrelevant to this story.

As it turns out, Friend A was, um, 'intrigued' by an infomercial. In fact, it was this infomercial for this product. She saw the commercial, and for some reason inside her funny little head, it made sense to purchase....... the Bun and Thigh Roller.

And, she did. For two easy payments of $29.99. For you see, the infomercial boasted a 'limited offer'! Hurry now! And she did. So as not to let this 'special one time offer' get away.

Well, some time later, we discovered the same offer online. In several places. And eventually I, too, saw the infomercial. With the same offer. The 'limited time only' offer, that perhaps wasn't so limited. Or 'limited' in the sense that when the end of time as we know it arrives, the offer will then end. I did not, however, rush to my phone to order. But we, many friends and I, did turn the whole thing into a fun friend joke.

See, the fun part about these TV purchases is that apparently you get the item.....someday. Some say allow 6-8 weeks for delivery. Apparently the Bun and Thigh Roller shows up whenever it feels like getting here. Maybe it rolls here on its own. So, we waited. And the anticipation built. As well as the jokes. And the lore. This was quickly becoming one of those tall tales, like Paul Bunyan, or the 'ozone layer'. It was just too funny, and hard to believe that it's actually true or really exists. Someone I knew bought a fitness contraption from the TV!! It can't be true.....

Then, in the timeline of events, came another friend's birthday. We'll call her Friend C. As Friend C opened cards and gifts for said birthday, her gift from Friend A (Bun and Thigh friend) came with a story. Apparently, as legend has it, when Friend A called to order her Bun and Thigh Roller for the low, low price of two easy payments of $29.99, the person on the phone told her she could get one free. This excited our dear Friend A, and she said yes! Sign me up! I want not one, but TWO Bun and Thigh Rollers!! Give me a free one!

The second Roller, you see, would be the birthday gift for our Friend C. The two of them could roll together, with matching Rollers. Oh, the funny-ness just wouldn't end!!

Still some time had passed since the ordering of the Rollers. And as yet, no Roller had appeared for us to see. We began thinking of other uses for the Roller, as we all know that TV purchases soon go the way of all TV purchases by becoming useful in ways other than what they are intended. We figured the Rollers would soon be an eclectic coffee table, perhaps a coat rack, maybe an interesting footstool of some sort. But no! Friend A insisted she would roll the Roller to Bun and Thigh bliss. As would Friend C, recipient of the free extra roller.

More time passed, and eventually Friend A called Bun and Thigh Roller Incorporated to inquire about the yet-not-seen-from-tv Rollers. By this time, we were all literally dying to see the Rollers. In action. We planned video footage and hours of storytelling fun, all about the Roller adventures. They would become members of our 'family'. We would take them on vacations, give them names, raise them as our own.

But we had to have them in our possession first!!

Bun & Thigh Roller Inc. said they would be with us in 7-10 business days. Oh my goodness, they are almost here!!!! What is taking so long??????? Clearly, these are very fancy contraptions that required many weeks of skilled labor to craft them, before being sent to live with Friends A and C.


Well..... at last, this week, I got the call. The Bun & Thigh Rollers had arrived! At long last! I was invited to the unveiling and assembling of the inaugural Bun & Thigh Rolling. I cannot put into words how excited I was for this event.

No. Words.

But, there was one more twist in the tale. This twist put the entire tale over the top in terms of hilarity stemming from a television purchase.

You see, there was a mix up of some sort. It may never be determined if Friend A was intentionally mislead, or if she was so excited at the thought of a free Roller that she failed to pay attention to the rest of the phone call when ordering, or if for some reason Bun & Thigh Rollers spontaneously regenerate in form, as well as in payment required. For not only were there two Rollers delivered to Friend A, there were THREE Rollers delivered. And charged to her credit card. In more easy payments of $29.99. Turns out, the free one came with the purchase of TWO rollers, not just one.

Oh my. That's a lot of Rollers.

So, as I arrived for Bun & Thigh Night, I could hardly contain my excitement that I, too, would get to play with a Roller. I arrived with camera in hand to capture the event on film. Friend A and Friend C put together their respective Rollers, complete with lots of papers and drawings and pieces and questions and craziness. I put together the superfluous Roller (even though I am not keeping it nor paying anyone for it), with much additional confusion. The laughing throughout the process did not help lessen the confusion.

And then.......... we rolled.

Rolled like we'd never rolled before. We put in the video (oh yes, there is a video - possibly costing more payments of $29.99), and we watched people in tight spandex roll to show us how to roll. There was so much rolling. And with all the rolling, we would one day look like the ones clad in spandex! This is what we want!!!

Amazingly, none of the contraptions broke or hurt us. For, we are geniuses in assembly of strange contraptions.

And I must say, today my buns and thighs quite possibly look...... exactly the same as they did yesterday.

I've decided that when no one claims the superfluous Roller, it will look great as a plant stand in the corner of my second bedroom.


This is your groove, yo.
To quote Randy. About the Big Band singing last night on American Idol.

Sadly, he isn't wrong.

It seems this year our American Idol will be a fabulous Big Band singer. Not necessarily good at any other type of singing. But since every pop/rock/indie/alternative musician these days needs to be able to sing Big Band, I assume having five Big Band singers as finalists is a good thing.

So, the contestants suddenly learned how to sing well over the past week. I was really only truly annoyed by Jasmine last night. Was it the outfit? The ever-present flower? The fact that she always looks like she's twelve years old and singing into a hairbrush in her bedroom?


I'm not quite sure how I feel about the random talking in between songs this week. Usually at this stage in the competition each contestant performs one song, then they get yelled at by the judges, then they come back later and do another song, only to then get yelled at a second time in one night.

Last night, they performed both songs in one strange set, with random talking/explaining in between each song. It caught me off guard, as it did LaToya who forgot how to say 'Natalie Cole'. But at least we didn't have to hear them get yelled at twice in one night. Although Randy only lavished praises upon them, seeming to think they had all found their groove. Yo.

Bottom Three is hard to predict, but the power of The Alliance definitely helped LaToya rock, or 'big band', the best last night. She was definitely the best of the night.

Hopefully America voted accordingly.



Tuesday, May 04, 2004

So, Algernon the mouse (thoughtfully so named by a commenter in the previous post) continues to terrorize me in my office today. One would think I'm becoming obsessed with the wee mouse. But I am not becoming obesessed at all.

I already am obsessed.

But, Algernon is definitely up to his tricks again today, even though I haven't seen him. And that is precisely the problem. I haven't seen him. I don't know where he is. He is not in the trap. In fact, the peanut butter cracker I left for him is still there. He ate the other shards of cracker that missed the trap. But the big chunk on the trap, he left it alone.

Where is he???

I'm really worried he will dart across my desk again at any moment. He's not behind the desk as he was yesterday. I know he is waiting somewhere, watching, laughing, nay... mocking me.

I'm nervous. I'm on edge. I'm worried. I'm uncomfortable.

Maybe Algernon thinks he works here.

He does not. He's a mouse.

I just want to be left alone.....


Monday, May 03, 2004

Mighty (and evil) Mouse
The mouse is still with me. Torturing me. I've seen it. In fact, I've been watching it for the past two hours or so. Completely helpless.

And freaking out.

Apparently what I have here is the World's Smartest Mouse. Since when did mice become smarter than humans? I can't answer that. But this one is definitely winning.

And it's pure torture........

I arrived to work this morning hoping the mouse trap set on Friday would contain one dead mouse. Sorry to all of you 'humane rodent removers' out there, but I just want the trap to do it's job and rid my office of said Evil Mouse.

Because he is evil, you know. All mice are.

Well, sadly, there was no mouse in the trap this morning. Which meant the mouse was still at large. In my office. Threatening to strike and devour me at any given moment.

I tried to put this thought out of my mind and go about my business of the day. But, the mouse had other ideas for my time today. He soon began his evil plan.

First, I noticed an unpleasant surprise on my desk. In the corner, but there nonetheless. Mouse droppings. Then I noticed more. And more. On the desk.

Oh he did not.....

Yes, he did.

This called for an immediate sanitization of the entire desk, computer, phone, seating area. I looked all over the building until I found something resembling cleaning products, cleared everything off of my desk, threw many things away, and scrubbed desk, computer, phone, seating area, anything a mouse might have touched or breathed on. Once finished, I carefully rearranged everything back in its place.

Now, I could get some work done. This area was clean.

Well, then the evil critter decided to jump onto my desk. Oh yes, he did. While I was sitting here typing. And while this may seem like an amazing feat of mouse agility, it isn't. He simply climbed the computer cables on the back of the desk, and propelled himself over the back of the desk and onto the flat surface.

Never have I jumped so high in all of my life. White girls can, in fact, jump in the face of a mouse attack.

I then ran around the room for a bit, trying to ward off the evil mouse spirit. I was truly, honest to goodness, freaking out.

I looked for the mouse on my desk, my desk that I had JUST de-moused, but could not find His Evilness. I looked behind the desk. Nothing. He had gone back into hiding.

I had no idea what to do.

I decided to more closely inspect the mouse trap, since what we seemed to have here is a very bold mouse. And, my suspicions were validated when I took a closer look at the trap and noticed the smear of peanut butter had been licked off, yet the trap had not sprung.

World's. Smartest. And Most. Dainty. Mouse. EVER.

So, I called the maintenance guy again and had him reset the trap. This time he chose crunchy peanut butter, which he felt would definitely catch the mouse. He put the trap in the middle of the floor near I had seen the mouse, and he left me alone again. With the mouse.


I decided to clear more clutter from the side of my desk nearest the wall. I was determined to find out where the mouse had made his hideout. But, I did not want to stick my hand in there. So, I fashioned a long poking device made of a ruler and a series of paperclips. With this device, I began pulling things out of the crevice between the desk and the wall, and depositing it all in the trash. Once it was clear, I had a clean view of about an inch-wide space where a mouse could hide quite easily. I saw nothing, but I felt good about my progress.

I then began to think about the placement of the trap, I decided I knew it would be more effective near the wall where I'd noticed a pile of mouse droppings. I went over to the trap and poked it with the poking device to move it towards the wall.

It sprung.

HOW ON EARTH can I spring a trap by barely touching it, but the mouse managed to EAT OFF OF IT and not get trapped???

Not to mention, I had no idea how to set a mouse trap. I'd just seen the maintenance man struggle with it. No good can come from this dilemma.

I didn't want to call the maintenance guy again to tell him I'd sprung the trap. He keeps laughing at my mouse situation.

So, I paced my office for a few minutes, then got up the courage to attempt to set the trap. I bent down over it, looked at it, held the springy thing with one hand, flipped the other thingy with my other hand and..... done. It stayed. It seemed set. I had all my fingers.

I'm a genius!!

I moved it to the wall, just knowing I'd be catching that mouse any second now. No mouse is smarter than me!!

I went back to my chair and sat at the computer. Not ten minutes later, the mouse took another trip across my desk. I jumped up, definitely higher than the last time.

As I was in mid-air, I noticed the mouse not only crawling on the desk, but towards my keyboard. Nay, not towards it. But under it.

Yes, the mouse was now hiding underneath my computer keyboard.

Uh................. now what?

This was a major challenge extended by the mouse. He had not only come onto my desk, but he had invaded my most sacred office object: my computer and keyboard. This is my outlet!! My solace!! My one thing that gets me through the day.

He had desecrated my sacred ground.

Well, the freaking out was in high gear at this point. And I didn't know what to do. Suddenly, the mouse hightailed it out from under the keyboard and went back over the backside of the desk. I walked around the desk in pursuit.

Then I saw him poke his head out from behind something sitting on the floor. Oh my goodness!! There's the mouse!!!

He crept out from behind the floor thing and made his way to the mousetrap. I noted how thoughtful it was of me to move the trap to its present location, because I felt sure I was about to catch the mouse. No way he could escape now!!

I continued to watch as the mouse went over to the trap, stood on the trap, jumped up and down on the trap, ran over the trap, chewed on the trap, ran around the trap, came at it from behind the trap, and eventually ate the crunchy peanut butter while sitting right on the trap.

Nothing happened. The trap didn't budge.

Eventually the mouse got bored with the trap and scurried off behind some other stuff on the floor.

What did I just see????? This mouse is definitely taunting me.

I watched as the mouse went back behind the desk, so I ran back to the front of the desk to see if I could find where he was hiding. I peered down into the space I just cleared and there, behind the desk in the wall crevice, was the mouse. Just hanging out there.

So, now I had a trap with no bait that didn't care to spring anyway, and a mouse feeling good about himself hanging out right behind my desk.

He could leap back up here and eat me alive at any moment.

I decided to scare him out of the wall crevice, so I grabbed a handful of paperclips and began throwing them back there. He ran back and forth, but was ultimately un-phased by my paperclip arsenal.

This mouse must be the mastermind of all mice. He is invincible.

So, for the past hour or so, I've been keeping an eye on him. I figured if I constantly know where he is, I will at least freak out a little less. I've reset the trap with a piece of peanut butter cracker. So far he has eaten the crumbs dropped nearby, loud enough so I can hear him, but he has not ventured back to the trap.

And, I now realize as I've been typing this blog entry, I've lost him.

Oh no............

He could be anywhere!