Strange Dream

Sunday, December 31, 2006 | 0 Comments

Last night I dreamed that I was invited to be part of the cast of Saturday Night Live. The end of the show consisted of a skit that was reminicent of the 80s comedy showdowns in which at some point in the movie the goofy, mismatched group of characters are forced to go head to head with some dream team in a winner-take-all series of games.

The first game that I remember was a kind of talent show in which the audience got to pick the winners. It was down to Tina Fey, who was playing some old-lady character, and the character "Carol". I was truly appalled to watch "Carol" win (although I knew that the "Carol" skits always made me laugh).

As I was consoling Tina on her loss, the last game, a three legged race mostly consisting of people/characters that I didn't recognized, started. But there was one that I did - Ron Howard. He looked about 14. Tina Fey whispers to me, "How do you think he stays looking so young?" (She was still in her old-lady costume which made me snicker).

As the show was wrapping up I called my sister. We were supposed to go to a party one of my friends was having that night after the show. She had the directions and was the only ride I could get to the party. I hadn't seen the friend in a while and a lot of my other friends were going to be there. She said that she was coming to pick me up in about 15 minutes.

15 minutes later my son came walking into the studio. My sister had been watching him for me, so I grabbed my coat and said good-bye to the cast. She didn't come in with JD so I asked him where she was. "Oh, she left. She just dropped me off and left."

"Did she say she was coming back?"


At this point I could hear my brother Bo snickering. I had been allowed to bring one person to the studio for the Saturday night show and I had chosen him. I was going to ask him what was so funny, then I realized that he knew that my sister had had no intention of taking me to the party. I started beating him down with a rutabaga, swinging it by the green tops and wholloping him with the hard root. "You knew! You knew! I was allowed to bring one person, ONE PERSON! You are such an asshole!!" I yelled about how pissed I was, and how I was never going to forgive her or him for this.

And even as I said it, I realized that in a way I would because I forget things pretty easily. But NO! THIS I WOULD NOT FORGET AND I WOULD NOT FORGIVE!!! I promised myself. I was determined to remember and get my revenge on her!!

Then I woke up. At first I was really pissed off because I didn't get my chance to get back at her, then I laughed.


SierraBella said...

A Rutabaga?
That has some kind of deep meaning I just can't put my finger on!
Have a wonderful New Year!!!

Sylvana said...

Sierrabella, I'm pretty sure that the rutabaga came in to play just because it was funny. My mind has a way of finding a way to make fun of pretty much any situation.

OldRoses said...

Syl, that's some heavy emotional stuff you were sorting through. Glad you got it all worked out and can start off 2007 with a clean (emotional) slate.

Anonymous said...


Wendy A said...

I think you might need a shrink to analyse that. Dreams can be so strange.

Anonymous said...

Sorry- I stopped commenting for a while 'cause I switched to googlebeta something or other, and it was/is causing me a headache.

Anyway- every time I see Tina Fey on TV or hear an interview w/ her, I think of how cool it is that you had a dream about her. Why can't I meet Tina Fey in my dreams too?

Sylvana said...

OldRoses, aw, my new year started out like crap! But, thankfully, it now seems to be moving away from crapiness.

Salihah, thanks! My unconscious can be very clever.

Wendy, I generally don't put much meaning into my dreams; although, there have been a few times that I actually dreamed the future! Who knows. Maybe some day I will be beating my brother with a rutabaga and thing to myself, "OMG! I DREAMED THIS!"

Shannon, my mind has very few secrets from me. I knew what this dream was about. Most of it came from reading your post on TV shows! Tina Fey is from 30 Rock and she used to be on SNL which is how I included that. Ron Howard made Arrested Development, and whenever I hear his name I ALWAYS picture Opie.

Anonymous said...

hello yummy :-) remember me...

I am back :-)


Elizabeth said...

I hate it when dream-emotions run into real life. They make the whole day seem less real. Funny dream, though.

Sylvana said...

Van!, hey, good to see you again! Aw, I bet you call all the girls "yummy";)

Elizabeth, SSB and I both have woke up pissed at each other because of things that have happened in dreams. Luckily, it doesn't last long!

Re-posting for the Holidays

Wednesday, December 20, 2006 | 0 Comments

I have a couple of posts that I'm working on, but would like to revisit one of my first posts since it is so appropriate for the time of year. I've been hearing a lot of people complain about the same things that I address in this posts, so I thought that I would try to empower people to make Christmas better.

Bah, Humbug!
December 13, 2004

Christmas has been one of my least favorite holidays for quite a few years (since early childhood really). It has come to symbolize inadequacy, disappointment, family feuds, ungratefulness, and sickening materialism. The calculations one must perform in order to get just the right kind of gifts for the right amount of people to avoid appearing to favor one loved one over another is way too complicated for a holiday that really is supposed to symbolize good will toward your fellow human being. This holiday has been the source of many a family brawl and has always lead to ill feelings in my family. Not to mention the stores during this time of year become battlegrounds where only the ruthless survive. Because of these reasons I went years without really celebrating it. Then one day I had a brilliant idea. Instead of getting gifts for people who already have everything that they need, why not get presents for those who don't? That made so much sense I couldn't believe that I had lived so long without thinking of it before. It perfectly fits the spirit of the season and it finally makes me feel good about Christmas again. I know that the people who get the gifts will appreciate them. It gives me a greater appreciation for what I have. No more returns and re-gifting (come on, we all do it!). I now look forward to Christmas; it has regained it's meaning for me. I think that all the people that have grown cynical of this holiday should try it. If enough people do it I feel the world can be a much better place to live. If you still feel that you need to get something for your family members, you can give them a card that says that a donation has been made in their name to whatever organization you decide to give your gifts to. I do Toys for Tots (there's just something about a bunch of tough Marines giving toys to needy kids that melts my heart) and I buy a cart full of groceries for the local food shelf. How can you not feel fantastic about that? People in need have a happier holiday and I get a high that last the whole season.


Wendy A said...

Yes! and random acts of kindness. That truly is the christmas spirit.
I once stopped the car on a busy highway late on Christmas eve and gave a poor homeless lady pushing a shopping cart full or her own possessions a $50.00 bill. The surprise on her face was the best present ever.

I still buy to much for my kids.

Derek Knight said...

There are certain people on our gift list who'm I've stopped trying to please and started getting suitable "re-gifting" items so they can just wrap it up and give it away. As far as the "a donation has been made in your name" stuff goes, just make sure that it's an organization or cause that the recipient would support anyhow...Otherwise it just seems preachy...My uncle had a tree planted in our name somewhere in Africa on Christmas. No picture, no map...Just the promise that somewhere in Africa, I have a tree. I wonder how my tree is doing from time to time...

Sylvana said...

Wendy A, I like to do things like that too.

Derek, I don't think that donating food to our local food shelf or toys to Toys for Tots would really be stepping on anyone's toes. But seriously, I would not care because I am constantly suffering the preachiness of my family, so much so that at this point it would be an added bonus if I knew that they felt that they were getting a taste of it back.

Anonymous said...

Nice thoughts.

Hope you & SSB have a festive time this year. Don't forget to leave the milk and cookies out for the big guy in red.

Kari said...

aww, that's really sweet of you! a friend of mine likes to buy mc d's value meals every once in a while and then give it to a homeless guy.

sands of time said...

Hope you have a wonderful christmas holiday

Anonymous said...

My brother got my mom & grandma donations to an African village for Christmas. My grandma got two trees dedicated to her, and my mom got a goat. I don't know what that says about my mom, but I think it's a good thought.

Merry Christmas, Sy.

Anonymous said...

Merry Christmas Sylvana! Best wishes to you and your family.

AG said...

Merry Christmas!

Sylvana said...

Shamus, everyone puts out cookies for Santa, but what about his reindeer?

Kari, I've done that before.

The Doc, did your mom get an actual goat? That would be a very interesting gift.

OL, Sandy, and AG, thanks, you too!

Anonymous said...

Now a goat - that's a great gift!

That's the perfect post for me to read today - I had a pretty annoying Christmas and this made me feel better! Hope you & SSB had a great holiday!

Sylvana said...

Heather, aw, thanks! We did. quiet, but good.

What's That Sound?

Tuesday, December 12, 2006 | 0 Comments

In the paraphrased words of the infamous Ross Perot, that sound would be the big sucking sound. But not of jobs, of renters.

Seriously. Two days after we signed a lease for the one apartment, the tenant in the lower unit gave his notice. What the hell? I think that the economy has finally driven him to move in with his girlfriend.

THEN two days later (today) SSB drove out to our other property to find out what was going on with the tenant there. He hadn't paid rent yet and when I called, his phone had been disconnected. We knew the tenant was on disability, although we weren't sure what his disability was. I told SSB that if the tenant didn't answer the door he should go in to check if the heat was still on and if all the water was off; but that if he was greeted with any funny smells, he should just call the cops.
After sufficiently freaking him out with that little nugget he was actually relieved to find not a body lying on the floor, but this instead:

"Had to move. Keep deposit. I just spent $300.00 on gas. Thanks!"

Yes, that is indeed a brown paper towel, like the ones that they have in gas station bathrooms. SSB said all the water was off, the heat was turned down but not off, and the place was exceptionally clean as well. The "gas" refers to the LP tank that he apparently just had filled for the winter. Now why would he get the tank filled and then move?

Odd. Very, very odd.

All day we have been developing a story to go with it. Themes so far involve being arrested, running from the law, witness protection program, running from the mob, secret agent, abducted by aliens, and schizophrenia.
I suggest you have a little fun and create your own story.

I'll miss him. He was a good renter.

And on the secret agent note...
I went to see Casino Royale tonight.

I was really skeptical. I had been lobbying for Adrian Paul as the new Bond (it was my very first post, in fact!). But he didn't get it. :(
So I was ready to hate ANY new Bond.
But I just couldn't. He's too good. Very dark, handsome, tough, mysterious, funny, rough around the edges, with a vein of sensitivity hidden somewhere deep inside. A fabulous Bond.

Sorry Adrian.


Shamus O'Drunkahan said...

Yes, the new Bond rules.

There's a great site called "Found" that has all sorts of things like that note. It's fun to try and fill in the blanks.

Flubberwinkle said...

This post is packed with suspense, action, bad guys /good guys.

A thoughtful fugitive who runs but
>>turns off the water supply in case of a leak,
>>leaves a filled LP tank
>> AND a clean house behind?
Sounds like MY kind of "criminal".

I've heard good things about this new Bond. James Bond. I'm sold and plan on seeing this new double-O 7 flick soon.

OldRoses said...

Deadbeat Dad. They spend money on everything but their kids.

Shannon said...

I agree w/ Shamus- FOUND magazine is a good place for that note. How strange- I don't get the gas reference...what's an LP tank?

I felt so-so on the Bond movie. I liked the new actor as Bond...I agree he was awesome, but the movie itself was too long. As soon as I thought the plot was resolved, they kept going and going. They needed to re-pace it to make it flow better.

But I love the rough Bond character. How badass!

Derek Knight said...

Scenario A: The joint was haunted. The old man got tired of having conversations with the dead at 3am every morning and went in search of a less haunted place to live.

Scenario B: Kidnapped! Or...Oldmannapped! The, the napper forced him to scrawl the note prior to taking him to Canada to serve as his manservant.

Scenario C: (my favorite) after many years of "just getting by," your tenant decided to finally pursue his childhood dream of running off to join the circus. I saw him last week, actually, working as "limpy the disabled clown." He's an inspiration to all the kids out there who have no skill set, but yet they just keep trying. By the way, his torch juggling routine went poorly but the EMTs responded quickly enough that he'll be back up and around within the next year.

Sylvana said...

Shamus, SSB popped over there really quick and we were very glad that our renter didn't leave us THIS NOTE.

Flubberwinkle, it certainly could have been worse.

OldRoses, damn dead beat dads! I don't think that was the case. He was living off disability. If they found him to give him check, they found him to garnish it too.

Shannon, LP gas is basically liquid propane.

The false endings in Casino Royale were on purpose to surprise and increase the sense of tragedy. It's the same tool they use in horror movies to really scare you.

Derek, maybe that's how he got disabled in the first place!

sands of time said...

I have to agree i love Daniel Craig as the new bond.

Kari said...

Hey Sylvana!!!!

Yes, my dad rents out property too and it is such a hassle running around after people. One of our tenants actually stole all of our doorknobs, light switch plates and any other little nuggets he could find. Ridiculous.

I think the secret agent is most interesting. Also, it might explain why it was so clean.

Anonymous said...

How about schizophrenic aliens?

Sylvana said...

OL, he wasn't even on the list of potential Bonds when I was promoting Adrian Paul.

Kari, glad to see that you are back! I thought that the things that our tenants took were weird - like the shelves above the washer and dryer and showerheads.

Salihah, I'd run from schizophrenic aliens too!

Wendy A said...

I think he was diagnosed with teminal cancer and didn't want to hassel the security deposit inspection procedures. Life is really just too short to sweat the small stuff.

Maybe he won the lotto and the deposit just seem insignificant in comparision to the millions he won.

I am going to check out the New Bond.

Sylvana said...

Wendy A, I LOVE both of those stories!! Very creative.

SierraBella said...

I love wendy a's lotto story too!

Sylvana said...

Sierrabella, I could stand to win the lottery, but right now I would settle for some really good renters.

Anonymous said...

Loved the note. Great story.

I've heard good things about Casino Royale so maybe I'll haul my lazy backside out to the movies to see it.

Hope you had happy holidays!

Sylvana said...

Douglas, I know you would appreciate the note we found in the medicine cabinet written on the back of a packaged bandage, "I DON'T HAVE ADD, IT'S JUST... hey, LOOK! A SQUIRREL"

I am finally done with floors!! (For a while, anyway. SSB and I agreed to help out a friend put in flooring in her duplex to get it ready to rent out). We finished our office floor and the other bedroom floor in the apartment. Here are the before and after of the apartment bedroom floor #2.

Such an improvement, huh? That carpet looked MUCH WORSE in person. So if you think that it looks bad in the picture, just be glad that you didn't have to see it up close!

AND, we finally got the apartment rented!! Yay!! Now I can get back to more important things, like blogging.

JD had his 14th birthday. We had the party at the bowling alley again. The kids just love that. I don't have a picture of his DQ cake since we took the pictures on *gasp* 35mm! and haven't got the damn things developed yet. But here is a picture of what we had on his birthday a week after the party:

I made the pie from scratch, even the crust is from scratch. No canned filling either. I cut up the pumpkin and seasoned it myself. It was YUMMY!

My mom put the candles on. He's not 8, he's 14. I think she was just going for a symmetrical design using what few candles she had on hand.

Why do they let John Madden on the air. He is a completely irritating person. "I will talk a lot about absolutely nothing and circle everything."

We're not getting a WALMART!!! Those bastards. They have been pushing to get into our little town for a couple of years. Most people do not want one here, but the city planners were salivating over the prospect. I personally think that the planners must have been offered kick-backs to let them in. But, it doesn't matter because the DOT stepped in and said no-way to putting a stop light on a new 4 lane highway project that was created to allow for faster commutes and Walmart didn't want to wait over 5 years for an overpass.

I got my own bowling shoes! No more paying to wear grubby communal shoes! And aren't they adorable? You can't tell by this picture, but the off-white smooth parts of the shoes are actually iridescent.

I bowled pretty well too. I got the highest series of our team tonight.

NaNoWriMo turned out to be NaNoWriNo. I did get almost 3,000 words written, but that is a far cry from the 50,000 that were needed. Oh, well. There is always next year; and it is very good motivation to write.


Heather said...

Congrats on finishing the floor! Looks great. I wouldn't even know where to begin making a pumpkin pie from scratch! Well done. And the shoes ARE adorable. :)

The Doc said...

I think that 3000 words are acceptable with your involvement in the flooring saga (which looks very good!). I'm glad you're enjoying your bowling; not a huge fan myself, but I can see the potential for fun-times-having.

Sylvana said...

Heather, and they are comfortable.

The Doc, "flooring saga" - that had me laughing.

OldRoses said...

I made a pumpkin pie from a pumpkin once long ago. You're absolutely right. Nothing comes close to that yummy taste! I make my own crusts too but they aren't as pretty as yours.

AG said...

Those shoes are HOT!

sands of time said...

Belated birthday wishes to JD.
Great job on those floors as well and i love your bowling shoes.

SierraBella said...

OMG, I'm getting rid of the exact same carpet next week! Already ripped it out myself, so I could paint.
I'm doing new carpet, but just love your wood floors!
Belated wishes to JD.

Scott said...

Well don't keep us in suspense.... what was your bowling score?

Sylvana said...

OldRoses, I learned how to pinch the crust edges from my grandma.

AG, we actually talked about how much you would like them when I was purchasing them!

OL, thanks. I can't believe how big he's getting.

Sierrabella, I remember you saying that you had some pretty awful carpet. I couldn't imagine that carpet ever being "in style" enough to be found across the country!

Scott, you know, I can't remember what my high score for the night was, but my series was 375.

Wendy A said...

Flooring look fabulous. What an impovement.

Those shoes are adorable.

"I'm Not A Bigot, But..."

Wednesday, November 08, 2006 | 0 Comments

Today I am deeply ashamed of my fellow Wisconsinites.

They have voted to amend our state constitution to ensure that certain people would not have the same rights as others. They voted to restrict marriage and civil unions to be between one man and one woman; but more specifically to snatch equality away from gays.

And I hear these homophobes try to explain their position in a way that simulates reason, but it always comes out as sounding just like, "I'm not a bigot, but..."

Case in point: I had to endure the most infuriating conversation between my boss and a coworker today. They approached each other with hesitation about voting. They started with saying how surprised they were that the amendment passed. That segued into how each of them voted. My boss said that she voted yes. "I don't have a problem with people being gay, but-"

But she thinks it's unnatural, it would bother her if a gay couple were able to adopt a child before a normal couple and there is an overwhelming amount of studies out there that show that the best environment for a child is one with a male and female role model, it's sinful, and it is against my religion and this is a Christian country, so there.

Right. You don't have a problem with people being gay at all. What is really going on with statements like that is: "I know that these beliefs that I have make me seem like a bigot. I really don't want people to think that I am a bigot, but I also don't want to give up my bigotty beliefs. So, I will just preempt all my bigotty talk with 'I really don't have a problem with it' so everyone will know I'm really not a bigot, even though I am."

There is even so much more wrong with her statements I really don't know where to begin.

1. "It's unnatural."
Since she is so big on studies, you'd think that she would know that there are studies that show that being gay is very natural for gay people. Just because it is natural for her to NOT be gay, doesn't make it unnatural for ANYONE to be gay. Just like it may not be natural for her to have black hair doesn't mean that NO ONE can be naturally black-haired. It's in the genes that we get.

2. "The best environment for a child is one with a male and a female role model."
Actually, the best environment for a child is in a loving, caring, understanding environment. I grew up in a household with a male and female role model. Would I say that it was the best environment? HELL NO! There are thousands of gay couples in the U.S. and around the world right now raising happy, healthy children. The sex ratio of the parents really has nothing to do with a child's happiness other than it might make the bigotty people quit picking on them if they were being raised by a male and female.
AND there are THOUSANDS of children that never get adopted and spend their entire childhoods in orphanages or foster homes. Does she think that is better than having a gay couple adopt them? But she really doesn't have a problem with it.

3. "it's sinful, and it is against my religion and this is a Christian country, so there."
It may be a sin in her religion, but religion really doesn't have a place in the governing of this country. It was decided from the beginning that religion would be separate from state. Reason, not ideology, would run our government (don't laugh; I hear you snickering). Our Constitution also provides for the protection of EVERYONE'S rights, even if that means that they have to be protected from the majority (so in our country, the majority vote is not supposed to count if it is stripping rights from people). And by the very fact that religion and government were designed to be separate, this is NOT a Christian country! The majority of the people may be Christians, but that does not make the Bible our Constitution. ALL religions are supposed to be protected here.

It really saddens and frustrates me that people who claim to be caring, loving Christians "don't have a problem with" stripping human rights away from certain groups of people. It is acts such as these that have turned me away from Christianity.

Oh, and speaking of the loving, caring Christians here in Wisconsin, we also voted "yes" to adding the death penalty.

Wisconsin, you suck!


Derek Knight said...

same exact thing happened here in Colorado.

AG said...

It goes to show how tards run in all religions and geographic areas. Sometimes it makes Democracy scary.

OldRoses said...

And that's exactly why I gave up on organized religion. As practiced today, Christianity equals bigotry. According to my reading of the bible, Jesus taught just the opposite. He was FOR the poor, the downtrodden, the outcast. I think he would be very disappointed in his legacy today. Thanks for listening. I'll get off my soapbox now.

Shannon said...

This topic gets me so angry I can't actually read your post!!!! ARGH, America! ARGH!

Sylvana said...

Derek I was really hoping that this wasn't a trend. :(

AG, phobotards, all of them PHOBOTARDS!!

OldRoses, we seem to have gotten the same thing from reading the Bible; So why have SO MANY other people gotten it so wrong?

Shannon, thanks for the postcard! I have got to visit Japan! I need to get away to clear my head of all this insanity!

DrMax said...

Can't tell you how disappointed I was for the home state when I saw this in the paper. C'mon Wisconsin, you can elect Russ Fiengold but not reject this? No one is going to FORCE you to go to a gay wedding y'know. Syl, please continue the fight to remind folks of our Progressive tradition back there.

Wendy A said...

Why do Americans feel the need to control everyones private lives. Religion is so deeply intertwined in the American culture that it can't seperate it's self. America is the most religious industrialized nation in the world! You don't see the bigotry so much in Canada or Australia. Ugggg. So glad I moved.

sands of time said...

What does matter in the end if the union is m-f or same sex.Its just to show they are in love and commited to each other.Im sure god wouldnt care.

Anonymous said...

A bigot is one obstinately or intolerantly devoted to one own opinions and prejudices
"Got Jesus?" and "Homosexuals will burn in hell" is a type of fundamentalism that rejects all alternative thinking and is a flawed way of thinking. Human rights and social justice for gays can’t enter the minds of such folk.
Now I am not suggesting all these fundamentalist Christian’s folk are bigots BUT many seem to suffer from the same flawed mode of thinking.

It's OK to be passionate and opinionated but not to be a bigot.

The death penalty is a barbaric act, that neither reduces crime or benefits the victims of crime. I understand each death initated under such a County code is likely to cost upwards of 5 million dollars from your treasury, the legal process is incredibly long and protracted with numerous appeals.
Your ‘death penalty’ is likely to bankrupt the county. best wishes

Heather said...

It's infuriating that people always fall back on the "I'm a Christian" thing when bashing someone else's beliefs! There's that little thing in the Bible - "Judge not lest ye be judged" yet they're constantly judging the people who are different then them! "It is against my religion..." That's the statement that made my blood boil...just because it's their religion doesn't mean it's everybodys!!

Anonymous said...

Just surfed into your put this issue so well, thank you for your insights. All I can say is AMEN!

Stop by and say hi sometime!

Peace, Salihah

"I'm A GLUTEN!!"

Wednesday, November 01, 2006 | 0 Comments

OK, I'm beginning to think that I really hate myself. I was over at Lyvvie's blog and read about her participation this year in NaNoWriMo.

NaNoWriMo? What the hell?

So I Googled it and came up with this. Well, now that's just cool. A novel in a month. I have dabbled in writing before. In fact, I started a novel when I was 10 and got about a quarter of the way done, even. It was a great excuse to stay inside during recess so I wouldn't have to deal with playground politics. Just a couple years ago I found it and thought that it would be pure drivel (since I was writing it when I was 10!) but it was actually pretty good. So maybe I have a talent.

This would not be the first time that I have had a go at "scratch fiction". I took a creative writing course during my first go-round in college (you know, the one where I partied a lot) and would quite often have to pull a story out of my ass at the last possible minute (you know, cause I partied a lot). And they weren't that bad. Really!

So, I signed up for NaNoWriMo.
What does that mean?
That means that I will have to some how pull about 6 pages of writing per day out of my ass again. 1670 words a day.
Sounds like a lot, huh?
Well, this post so far is almost over 250 words, and it took me about 15 minutes to write. I think that I can handle a mere 1670!

It took me longer than that to think up a User Name while I was registering for the project. SSB started to laugh, "That's so ironic! Getting writer's block at 'User Name'!!"

I signed him up, too.

(BTW - the title of this post comes from one of my favorite TV shows which is no longer on the air, "Rocko's Modern Life". Heffer yells this out as he laments about not being able to keep his hands off foods - even other people's food. He's not very bright and mispronounces "glutten" for additional humor!)


evilsciencechick said...

a few weeks ago, I was clicking through the channels, and nickelodeon was showing rocko's modern life!!!!

I was very exited.

bath day is a very dangerous day.

good luck with the writing!

Sylvana said...

ESC, I am still crossing my fingers for DVDs. They have EVERYTHING ELSE on DVD!!!

OldRoses said...

I've always wanted to take a creative writing course. What's it like? Is it hard?

The Doc said...

I have failed NaNoWriMo three years in a row, and I'm going to fail again this year (especially with my practicum). But that doesn't mean I'm not going to try!

Sylvana said...

OldRoses, my professor was kind of bitter. I don't think I really learned anything - it was just forced writing for a grade. But writing is

The Doc, I'm sure I won't make it either. But I think it will be a good experience.

Shamus O'Drunkahan said...

I'm sure the speed novel stuff won't be worse than the crap on Oprah's book list.

Because her list is pure crap.

Derek Knight said...

I think if I weren't so damn busy, I might have tried this. Best of luck!

Sylvana said...

Shamus, I was hoping that I could sell my crap. I could really use the money.

Derek, I am not expecting to meet the 50,000 word mark; but I want to see what I can come up with.

sands of time said...

Well good luck with your novel.I know i'd never find the time to write one

DrMax said...

Hey Syl, still alive. I signed up for this to. Did one day and havn't gotten back to it since. I may have to canel my book tour.

Sylvana said...

Pink, I am having trouble finding time myself, but if this will help motivate me at all to get something written, I will call it a success.

DrMax, hey fellow NANOWRIMO! I've written three days and got over 2500 words so far. At this pace I should have something ready for Reader's Digest by the end of November.

Conversations At Our House v.18

Monday, October 30, 2006 | 0 Comments

Sy: I loved seeing a movie in 3-D. We should definitely go to another one.

SSB: We could go see that one that they advertised during Nightmare Before Christmas. I can't remember what it was about.

Sy: Neither can I.

SSB: Well, I doubt that the movie itself will be that good. I have this feeling that they skimp on the story quality for 3-Ds. I think that they count on people wanting to see it just for the cool gimmick.

Sy: Like porns!

SSB: [giggling]

Sy: OH!! What if they made a 3-D porn?!! The story lines for those would be REALLY BAD!! But people would definitely pay to see 3-D porn no matter what the story was like.


Michael Manning said...

Oh, this brought back a funny, funny memory! This dollar theater movie house put on one of the very first 3-D movies in color called "Dirty Flight Attendants" or something like that. A few buddies and I attended with high hopes (no pun, really!). We were let down (again, no pun). But it was awful. There was this crappy orchestral music while a crazed lady bereft of male companionship started making out with her lamp! I think we all go up and left for a pub!

Sylvana said...

Michael, that sounds horrible. I'm glad to hear that you had the good sense to find a more enjoyable way to waste your time.

Wendy A said...

No doubt in my mind that it has been done.

Shamus O'Drunkahan said...

(in the voice of those cartoon guys from the Guiness ads)

Sylvana said...

Wendy, I'd be surprised if they haven't ventured down that avenue yet.

Shamus, thank you. Thank you.

AG said...

I want to see 3-D junk food porn.

Sylvana said...

Ag, is junk food porn like intense TV ads where you start craving the food so bad you have to stop everything and run out to get it?

AG said...

YES and you need 70's style music playing. And maybe even want to go at it alone since it would be so shameful.


Friday, October 27, 2006 | 0 Comments

We had enough flooring left over from the kitchen to do one of the bedrooms. We chose the one off the living room since that would be the most visible to visitors. It was shag dark brown carpeting originally (and of course I forgot to take a picture). But here is a picture of the room after we tore the carpeting out.

Still, not so great looking, eh? But even this is a great improvement over that carpeting - yuck!
That circular area on the left was a huge hole in the floor. We were guessing that it was either part of the passive heating the older homes used to have (even ours has passive heating grates in the floor. Passive heat is basically heating the first floor, and the heat will rise to the second floor through the holes in the floor. Lovely.), or it was hole for the stove pipe. We patched the hole with a piece of plywood and leveled it with some Bondo-like material.

This floor took a LOT LESS time! JD and I had it nearly finished in less than 4 hours. I think it is a HUGE improvement.

There IS another bedroom with an even uglier carpet...


sands of time said...

You'll need a little sign saying
Wood is Good
your house is looking great with those floors

Sylvana said...

Pink, I really like wood, and these floors are way easier to keep clean.

Lindsay Lobe said...

There must be creativity and energy in the Wisconsin air; maybe it’s partly the influence of those Monks in Wisconsin who refill printer cartridges.
I refer to the famous Laser Monks who co habitat a 75-year-old Abbey of the Cistercian Order in Wisconsin and who refill printer cartridges to cover their expenses, instead of making cheese or beer, who have developed a successful business. If you want to save money, check out there web site. I am also sure they would be impressed and interested to hear about your patience and compassion towards your elderly patients at work!!

Excellent work on the flooring

Best wishes

Sylvana said...

Lindsay, Wisconsin monks?! WOW, you just told me something about Wisconsin that I didn't know.

Bring Me Your Aged and Confused

Thursday, October 26, 2006 | 0 Comments

As part of my job I have to try and explain things to confused elderly people.
Like copays.
"But I have Medicare. Medicare takes care of everything."
Or deductibles.
"But, I already paid that last year."

Today I had the joy of talking one woman down from a heart attack - 'cause she's old enough to have them, she kept reminding me.

And she was expecting trouble. She had her game face on and came at me guns a-blazing. This was not the first time I've gotten calls like this. I get them at least twice a month. I just keep calm and re-explain it until they understand.

But when they finally understand and realize that I have helped them, their demeanor changes. They thank me for my patience, my time and my help.
I just tell them, "No problem; that's what I'm here for."

Even though talking to them may be frustrating, I find that it is one of the more rewarding parts of my job.


Shannon said...

That takes a lot of patience. The medical system is confusing enough as it is- I can't imagine how hard it is to understand for someone who lived most of their lives without all the bureaucracy of Medicare and insurance.

Sylvana said...

Shannon, it does take a lot of patience. I like that I am helping people that would have trouble finding help with all that mumbo-jumbo.


Friday, October 20, 2006 | 0 Comments

Holy Cow! 15,000 visits to my blog. The 15,000th was someone from Syndey, New South Wales. Thank you EVERYONE!!

To celebrate I am going to go to the 3-D version of Nightmare Before Christmas.

OH YEAH!! That's right!! 3-D!!
I can't wait!!

For a sneak peek, grab your 3-D glasses and go here.

(yeah, I'm a geek. I have three different pairs of 3-D glasses)


Anonymous said...

15, a pimp. ;)


The Doc said...

Wow, I'm almost as impressed with the 15,000 as I am with the 3-D Nightmare. I have to figure out how to see that. (Except I'm pretty sure I can't.) Either way, congrats.

Lightning Bug's Butt said...

3-D. No way. So why do you have 3 pairs?

Sylvana said...

Steven Novak, welcome to my blog! I like meeting other dorky people. All the dorky people should unite, and together we could RULE THE WORLD!!

The Doc, I have heard rumours that it will be coming out on DVD. (The "u" was for you ;)

LBB, I have one from National Geographic for their 3-D Mars pictures; I have one pair from the 3-D episode of 3rd Rock from the Sun; and I have one pair from the 3-D episode of Medium. I keep them because you never know when they will come in handy - like the link that I have in my post. And I just put them on every once in awhile to see how things look through them; cause I'm dorky like that.

Hiding the Ugly

Friday, October 20, 2006 | 0 Comments

Tonight we worked on hiding some pretty ugly duct work and hot water pipe that ran through the pantry in the apartment.

Here you can see that I have already started on the framing. As usual, getting ahead of the photographs; but you can still see how ugly it is.

YAY! It's finished. Well, almost. I still have to put some more trim on, prime and paint, but I have been meaning to do this for years.

We also hung a medicine cabinet, finished triming the door we installed, replaced an electrical outlet, and replaced a heat vent cover. I felt really productive.


AG said...

You and SSB need to start a public access cable home improvement show for landlords and have it get picked up by a big network!

Shannon said...

That's a great idea...oh, and can I hire you? I'm really too lazy (and I don't have the tools) for this stuff...:(

Sylvana said...

AG, we have talked about it a lot, but can't find a camera person.

Shannon, and we have thought about starting our own home improvement business, but I don't think many people would want to live in SSB and Sy time.

Smashing Pumpkin Party

Sunday, October 15, 2006 | 0 Comments

I have lots of things to do right now that I am desperately trying to avoid.

I have tried to write a post about the weekend twice. Thought both of them sucked.

My friend J had a Pumpkin Party Saturday. It was a lot of fun. We all carved pumpkins and ate lots of really good food.

SSB gutting his pumpkin.

At dusk, we lined them up on her porch railing and lit them up. It was beautiful. Then we gathered around a bonfire and sang songs while J's husband played the guitar.

Yeah, they are hippies.

I brought home-made pumpkin pie and pesto pumpernickel. See, I had a "P" theme going. J's brother-in-law came up to me to tell me, "I have been waiting for your pumpkin pie all my life." He was oozing creep. Seriously, it took everything in me to not run from him.

Sunday, SSB and I installed a new bedroom door in the apartment. That was definitely the fastest that we have ever installed a door. I was impressed. And it is beautiful.


sands of time said...

That pumpkin party looks fun.Glad you all enjoyed it and great looking door as well.

Shannon said...

OH! That pumpkin party looks like soooo much fun. It makes me miss Wisconsin- I can almost feel a chill in the air.

This year I don't get to carve a pumpkin. :(

Lindsay Lobe said...

Folks celebrate with high-fives ?
Sculptured pumpkins watch with wide eyes
Pumpkin party looks oh so fine
Everyone hav’n such a good time ?

Eating pumpkins pie on your home turf ?
Dance with a fiddler for all your worth
Wisconsin pumpkins have no flaws ?
Dance to a turkey, a turkey in the straw ?

best wishes

Sylvana said...

Pink, thanks! We did enjoy ourselves.

Shannon, you could go old school and carve a turnip instead!

Lindsay, you would have been the hit of the party!

Conversations At Our House v.17

Thursday, October 12, 2006 | 0 Comments

[Watching a news show about the disappearance of a couple on Lake Erie last year]

Interviewer: [to girl's father] Why would she go out there in a boat? Out on the dangerous open seas.

Sy: It was a LAKE!!

SSB: It can get kind of choppy.

Sy: IT'S A LAKE!!!

SSB: Maybe there was a storm.

Sy: IT'S A LAKE!!!

SSB: The Edmund Fitzgerald sank during a storm.

Sy: On Lake Erie?!

SSB: No, on Lake Superior.

Sy: Oh! Now Lake Superior I could see. That's a BIG lake!!


AG said...

I did not know it sunk in Lake Superior.

While watching the news about the NYC plane crash yesterday the TV anchor was trying to descibe Manhattan. "There's lots of water on both sides. Think of it as an island."

Lindsay Lobe said...

Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources said you can have big waves in small lakes, but when it happens everyone is surprised !!

best wishes

Wendy A said...

People die in lakes all the time. It is still water. I just heard a 3 year old drowned in his pond here in Aust.Another set of twins drowned in a water tank. Guess I shouldn't be paranoid but water is water.

Sylvana said...

AG, I do not understand people's fascination with the Fitzgerald. It seems to be the Titanic of the Great Lakes.

Lindsay, they were saying that the waves were 3-5 feet at the time, which I guess are pretty big, but I was out in at least 3 foot waves on the North Sea piloting a Zodiac boat and it was fun!

Wendy, this interviewer was talking about Lake Erie and Huron like they were the Straits of Magellan. The couple were in their late twenties-early thirties in a cabin boat and she was an experienced and disciplined boater so it is not like the dad should have been as concerned about her safety as this interviewer was implying; not anymore so than having her drive across the state anyway.

sideshow bob said...

I heard that they had 8-10 foot waves on old Gitcheegumi the other day...too bad we weren't up there!

Shamus O'Drunkahan said...

I saw that show - very creepy and strange. I think it was a murder / suicide, but it's hard to tell from the facts. I hate watching theose shows because they don't always give you all the details. I researched it a little on line and there may have been a third person on the boat that they picked up at a marina. The TV show failed to mention that angle.

Sylvana said...

Shamus, I had heard that witness said that they had eben arguing with someone on shore at their gas stop. I wonder if they think that it was that same person.

Leaguing and Landlording

Sunday, October 08, 2006 | 0 Comments

I mentioned bowling to Blue one day, and she asked me if we bowled. I said that we did, sort of. That's great, she said, wanna join a league and bowl with me and my husband? Sure! I said.

So, SSB and I are now in a bowling league. And we finally got to try out our new ball.

I had told Blue that I wasn't a very good bowler, so she shouldn't expect much.
BUT, I bowled the best game of my life - 149. Yeah, I know that isn't spectacular, but I was happy!

We've also been renovating one of the apartments that we own. We bought the house in pretty rough shape, and have been tackling the repairs and upgrades a little at a time. Whenever a renter leaves, we scramble to get as many repairs and upgrades as we can get done before the next person moves in. This time we had replacing kitchen flooring on the agenda. The flooring in this kitchen was a dark brown CARPET!


I was so excited to finally be getting rid of the carpet that I forgot to take a picture of it before we tore it out, but here is a picture of what the floor under the carpet looked like.

It was hardwood flooring, but it was covered in paint and glue, so we were putting in laminate instead. Besides, I got a really sweet deal on the laminate.



Lindsay Lobe said...

I think 149 was a great score, maybe you can team up with a local league team !!.

Have you tried lawn bowls, a slower pace but more variety?

Best wishes

Flubberwinkle said...

Those floors look good enough to bowl on!

Wendy A said...

Carpet? what were they thinking? Looks like a huge improvement. Good buy vaccume.

Shannon said...

Why would you cover a hardwood floor with brown carpet?

Were they drunk!

149 is a great score- I don't care what anyone says. Some of us aspire to bowl that well...

Sylvana said...

Lindsay, no I have not tried lawn bowling. The reason bowling is so big around here is because you can do it inside! It gets cold here and we need something to do during the winter.

Flubberwinkle, :))

Wendy A, I actually like the kitchen now.

Shannon, highly possibly drunk.
I was pretty happy with my score. I was afraid of making a complete fool out of myself.

Heather said...

That new laminate looks great! It's what we have in our kitchen. The guy that lived in the house before us was a carpet installer so he carpeted most everything in the house before they moved out. Including the master bathroom!! We have carpet around our toilet & shower! So weird...

Congrats on your 149!!!

sands of time said...

Ive only ever bowled once and i was quite good at it.Your floor looks great.

Sylvana said...

Heather, I've seen carpet in bathrooms. That is WAY worse than carpet in the kitchen!

Pink, maybe you should join a league!