January 31, 2005

Greedy Bastards.

I want to complain about corporate America today. If you want to know why we disintegrating as a nation and people, it's because there's no sense of community anymore. I firmly blame a lot of this on the American corporate culture that promotes dissent and betrayal. Somewhere along the line those fat cats in suits have forgotten that their company's most valuable asset is its people. In actuality, perhaps they never thought that in the first place. But it seems to me, there was a time when people thought highly of rewarding the deserving. Now, it's all about numbers that don't mean anything anyway. Are you meeting your numbers? What are these numbers? Figures pulled out of someone's ass who probably doesn't have the first idea of knowing which "numbers" are even logical. It's supposed to all be about stock holders and their desire to see increases every quarter or whatever. Well, let me tell you stock holders who believe only looking at today is going to get you anywhere, you are participating in your own downfall by thinking more about the money than the people. If people have to lie and fabricate figures to satisfy your greed, know that very soon it will all come crashing down around your head. Everything in life is cyclical. You can't always go up, there are times you're going to fall. This is just common sense, yet entire corporations base their action plans on the impossible. In the meantime, they drain their workforce of any desire to produce because they know it just doesn't matter what they do. I want to know why the CEO's and CFO's and all the rest of them aren't the ones really held accountable. If you shit on people, that's what you get back. It's really a no-brainer, but I guess once you start pulling in a multi-million dollar salary, common sense and decency don't have place in your life. Case in point, I called Dish Network to discontinue HBO service. I did this because Dish Network raised our monthly bill, again, and I don't think it's worth spending $70.00 a month on television. Anyway, they charged me five dollars to flip the switch that turns off the HBO. That's bad business and I'll tell you why. I don't feel very good feeling toward Dish Network right now, so already, they pissed off the customer. I have no desire to ever reestablish additional programming in the future if I know I'm going to be penalized if I don't want it anymore. Now, the only person I have access to is the guy who answers the phone when I call the 800-number. Who am I going to take my frustration out on? Of course it's him. Did he have anything to do with the five dollar increase which led me to discontinue my HBO? No, but I told him it was wrong to punish me for not getting programming. He said the logic is that they charge anytime someone discontinues service that results in the company receiving less money. It's only free if you actually end up paying more money. I told the customer service representative to take my five dollars and go buy an extra pack of Ding-Dongs out of the vending machine. Who made this decision? The yo-ho in the suit who could give two shits that they've now alienated a customer and created strees for the poor customer service representative who has to deal with the alienated customer. It does not cost five dollars to flip a switch, I don't care who you are. But this is just an example of a larger problem. Wake up, you over-bloated blood-suckers. If you dick over the people, you really dick over yourself. I watched Harold and Kumar Go to Whitecastles over the weekend and there was a line in there I liked a lot that went something like: "The universe tends to unfold exactly as it should." So what that means is all those greedy bastards are going to get sucked into black holes that will crush them into peanuts.

January 27, 2005

Oh, my sciatic!

I had the ergonomics guy in yesterday to evaluate my chair and computer set-up because my back and neck are always killing me. I've got a bad back anyway, ever since I injured my back in gymnastics as a girl, but I thought these guys have got to do something to help me out. Apparently my monitor was too low and my chair too far away from the keyboard and my posture sucks. I could have told them all that. What I was really hoping for was that they'd order me a Mac Daddy chair that would,you know, vibrate and stuff. But no, these cheap bastards set my monitor up on two reams of copier paper and tightened the bolt on the bottom of my chair so the back wouldn't rock back. I wanted a new chair. They have these massage chairs at Brookstones that are AWESOME. I know you all know what I'm talking about. The chairs that give you the deep muscle rub. We were testing some out over Christmas. You don't ever want to get out of those chairs because they just feel so good. There was this foot massage thing, too, that I really liked. If I had that foot thing, I'd bring that into work and use it all day long. It kind of hurts, you know, with those nubs pushing into the bottom of your feet, but it's good pain. Ooooh, yeah. Good pain. See, I'm typing right now with the wrist rest thing on my keyboard raised up and now it's making my shoulder hurt to have my arms in this position. Thanks ergonomics guy. Thanks for nuthin'. I have one friend who's a graphic designer and she told me when she worked at this one newspaper, they totally gave everyone their own personalized, ergonomically correct workspace so that everyone had their own comfort pod. That's what I wanted. I wanted the comfort pod. Oh well, guess I'll order some stuff out of the office supply catalog to ease the pain.

January 25, 2005

We've only just begun to live. Something, something and promises.

I forgot to mention yesterday that over the weekend, I was singing some mean karaoke with the awesome karaoke microphone my mother gave me for Christmas. I've mentioned the mic before, if you recall. Anyway, I'm singing some mean karaoke Saturday night and my daughter falls asleep on the couch because she's drugged up with Dimetapp. The really amazing thing, though, is that she stayed asleep while I continued singing. At the top of my lungs. So, very loudly. She slept through the entire thing. She slept through my renditions of Fly Me to the Moon and Dream On, which ended up causing me severe vocal cord injury. After singing Dream On and then Dude Looks Like a Lady, I have put to rest any misguided notion that there is another human being on this planet--other than Steve Tyler, of course--who can actually sing an Aerosmith song without having their head explode. So hat's off to the Dimetapp. That stuff's the Bomb, G.

January 24, 2005


I'm tired and I really don't feel like talking but I didn't post anything on Friday because I was too busy, so I'm making myself type a few words today. Went to a reading Friday night with my husband. It was good. We only got about a foot of snow over the weekend, which has pretty much been shoveled out of the way. However, there was enough snow to cancel my daughter's cheerleader camp and she was pretty bummed about that. My husband took her sledding to the park across the street to help her get over her disappointment. Did the Boy Scout pancake breakfast at church yesterday, and, oh my God! When did I end up in an episode of the Twilight Zone where all of a sudden I'm in the middle of the Andy Griffith Show? Cheerleader camp? Sledding in the park? Pancake breakfast? I think I'm going to have to go vomit up all the saccharin I apparently consumed over the weekend.

January 20, 2005

You just never know.

When my husband came home last night he told me how he had basically been the first person on the scene right after the first of these two accidents.
Fatal accident
He'd been anywhere from thirty seconds to a minute behind the crash when he stopped; a person travelling the opposite direction stopped, too. The other person ran to the truck, where the driver was still alive, but basically trapped in the vehicle, and my husband ran to the minivan where he discovered the driver was dead. Needless to say, it shook him up pretty bad. He said he'd never seen a dead person before and it was a shock to him to realize that the man was not alive.
"He looked like he was just sleeping," my husband told me.

He said it wasn't particularly gory or anything and, if he had to guess, he'd say the driver was killed by a broken neck beacause his head lolled off to the side in a weird way. Anyway, once the rescue crews arrived and assessed the situation and asked my husband if he'd witnessed the accident, he left to come home. He told me he felt very sobered by the whole experience and it made him realize how frail life is. My husband explained that he said a prayer for the dead man's soul, but what else can you do?

Once when my family was driving to visit my aunt for the day, we drove by a bad accident that was still being sorted out by the authorities. As we drove by, I say a sheet-covered body on the side of the road pulled some distance away from the accident scene. I was still in college at the time, I think. Anyway, that shook me up, as well. I didn't see the man's face or anything, but you could see his boots sticking out from under the sheet. At any rate, it just makes you think that you just never know when your time is up and these sorts of encounters should remind us to live every day without regrets.

January 19, 2005

I have nothing to say today.

I have nothing to say today, but I already told you that. There's some interesting family drama going on right now. As I've mentioned, my brother got engaged over the holidays and I really think my mom is freaking out. He's the baby and the only boy, so in some ways, this is really the last chick leaving the nest. Because of this, my mom is really looking for reasons to be disappointed in my brother's choice. She's got to look for reasons because there are no glaringly obvious reasons to think my brother's fiancee is unacceptable. And deep down, I think my mother realizes this. She knows deep down that his fiancee is a smart girl with a good head on her shoulders and that she's exactly the kind of girl my brother needs to keep him in line. Anyway, she complained to me that "this American girl" doesn't know she's not supposed to call me by my first name. In Korean culture, you would never address your elders by their first name. Everyone refers to everyone else in regards to their relationship to that person. If you are younger, you call people by a certain name. If you are older, you call people by a certain name. If you are only acquaintances and older, you call people by a certain name. If you are family and younger and are from the father's side of the family, you call people by a certain name. You get what I'm talking about here, right? But what you almost never do is actually call a person by their name. Now, in American culture, it is perfectly fine to call people, whether they're older or younger or family or not, by their first name. So, my mother is upset that my brother's fiancee calls her by her first name. I told my mother she cannot be upset about this because my brother's fiancee cannot possibly know any of this unless my brother tells her. I explained she's not being insulting in American culture and why would my mom expect her to know that it's any different in Korean culture. I told my mother if she's going to be upset with anyone (which she shouldn't be anyway), my brother should bear most of the responsibility in this situation. But like I said, I think most of this is fueled by a sadness in my mother that her baby is starting his own family.

So I told my brother all of this yesterday and now he's sad because he thinks if he tries to tell his fiancee about these things that it's all just going to alienate her from the family. I don't necessarily agree with this. In some ways, I don't think my brother is giving his fiancee enough credit for being the rational person she is and realize that she can probably process this information in a thoughtful manner. I told him he has to at least let her know this sort of stuff is happening so she can understand the situation better. I'm sure it's all really none of my business in the long run, but I am tired of always being caught in the middle of stuff. My mom freaked out a bit when I got married, too. We ended up having a fight the night before my wedding and my father laughed at us and said he knew it was coming and then my mom got mad at him for laughing at us and trying make it seem like we were trivial. It's the nature of weddings, I think. Everyone loses their mind. However, I am concerned in a general way that my brother seems to think he cannot share everything with his fiancee because as far as I'm concerned that is one of the most important elements of having a successful marriage. In this case, success being defined as continuing to stay married while still respecting and loving your spouse and not wanting to punch them in the face everytime you look at them. (Although, I must confess that there will always be occasional times when you feel like you can't keep yourself from punching your spouse in the face beacause, dammit, what rational person looks at the crumbs they've left on the counter and just leaves them there?) You cannot keep secrets from each other. You have got to be as forthcoming with the information as possible. If you don't, that indicates at some level to me that you are not completely comfortable with yourself when you are with this person and you are not confident enough in that person's acceptance of you.

January 18, 2005

Korean mothers

I've been reading Angela's book manuscript and it's funny to read about the way she portrays Koreans mothers because it's such a familiar picture to me. I think there's something to be said for mothers who lived during the Korean war, as mine and Angela's did. In some ways, my mother will always be the little girl who had to struggle to get food and help her family survive because there was nothing. People in this country don't really understand the hardship of war and how that affects one's outlook on life.

My mother and father have a pretty comfortable life, but my mother is always a little bit scared that it's never enough. This part is obviously more about having lived during wartime than being Korean, but I still view it as being a Korean thing. Anyway, some of the things that happen in Angela's book between the protagonist and her mother are like scenes ripped right out of my memory. You just don't realize when you're living your life that it might parallel someone else's so closely.

Anyway, I always had a sort of a buffer zone between me and the rest of American society because my father is American. I didn't come from a purely Korean outlook the way my full Korean cousins did. In a lot of ways I defintiely see the world in terms of what's American and what's Korean, but I didn't have to readjust my thinking in too many ways to realize how I was supposed to be in either world.

January 17, 2005

I told you, you have to glide.

It's funny to watch children behaving like old people. My daughter had one of her school friends over for a playdate yesterday. This particular friend is a boy and my daughter basically considers him her best friend at school. I think I've mentioned him in the past. Anyway, so he was over for a playdate, my daughter's first, in her mind. She apparently doesn't count the numerous times she's been over to friends' houses in the neighborhood or they to ours because "that's just playing." For most of the afternoon, they played Gamecube and gameboy. There have been times in the past when I'm in the que waiting to pick up my daughter that I watch the way she intereacts with her friend, and I've seen her fix his collar and things like that. It's all very cute and they look like an old married couple. However, I've never heard them have a conversation until yesterday and it went something like this:

(Discussion while playing Spyro on Gamecube.)
Ma: I told you, you have to glide.

Pa: I know what I'm doing wrong. You don't have to tell me.

Ma: Go that way, Pa. Go that way. Do you want me to do it for you?

Pa: I know what I'm doing wrong. You don't have to tell me.

Ma: I'm just trying to help you.

Pa: I know what I have to do. A-ha, see there? I told you I knew what I had to do. I wasn't pressing the Y button.

Ma: I could have told you that.

Pa: Just let me do it.

Listening to this conversation scared me a little bit because it sounded eerily like conversations my husband and I have. This is making me think that perhaps we are hardwired to have these conversations with members of the opposite sex. We obviously pop out of the womb thinking the opposite sex is moronic.

January 14, 2005

Friday, once again.

So here we are at another Friday. I'm cold, so cold. Vital signs shutting down. Did I mention I hate winter? My sister's Christmas gifts to us arrived last night and my daughter nearly had a coronary when she opened her gift: a gameboy. She's wanted one for awhile, so she was pretty psyched, to put it mildly. She nearly peed her pants when she first opened the game and then realized the other package had to be the unit. She screeched and lovingly fingered the gameboy with the adoration of a priest to the host. She said, "This is one of the happiest days of my life." Why can't adults be so easily pleased? Although, I suppose if someone where to give me a mini Ipod, I'd be pretty ecstatic myself. Who could imagine that we'd get so much pleasure from a battery-operated device? Uh, hmm.

Renee, one of the grad students working with me this year, left a little surpise for me on my desk. She made me a a placard with the title, "Supreme Ruler," burned into it. It's AWESOME. I'm going to put it over my desk so all may remember the glory of me. :-) It's actually an inside joke of sorts. When I was hired as executive editor to NDR, they wondered what my title should be and I told them, "I want to be called Supreme Ruler." They laughed because they thought I was joking and then I assured them, "I'm serious." Then they stopped laughing and coughed uncomfortably and said, "Hmm, executive editor, that sounds good." So there you have it. But now with my true title restored, I can conquer the planet and have my way with all of humanity. Ha, ha, ha. (this is evil, maniacal laughing, by the way.)

January 13, 2005

Women don't perspire, they glow.

But I straight out SWEAT. In an attempt to squeeze in even the most miniscule amount of exercise into my busy, busy day, I walk up the stairs to my office every morning. I'm on the top floor of my building (eleven stories), so I use footpower. I started doing it after I noticed how slim a woman who works on my floor was getting and she said she just started walking up and down the stairs twice a day. I said, "That's all?" She said she's also watching what she eats, but that the stairs was it for exercise. I don't do it twice because I figure my jogging makes up for it. Anyway, by the time I get up here, I'm sweating pretty good. It's not even because I'm that exhausted or anything, I just start to sweat quite profusely when I do anything physical. I also get really red in the face so people sometimes think I'm ready to pass out, which I'm not. I don't know why it happens, but it just does. Anyway, sweating when you're exercising and you don't have anywhere to go afterward is one thing, but sweating at the beginning of your work day is kind of gross. I have to strip down to the least level of deceny and sit here for about ten minutes drinking water and waiting for the sweat to evaporate. I will say this much, though, I've definitely noticed that jogging is much easier since I've been taking the stairs. I don't know if it's improved my cardiovascular health or what, but muscle fatigue stops me before breathlessness does these days.

On different topic entirely, I don't often worry too much about celebrity lives, but what's the deal with Jennifer Aniston divorcing Brad Pitt? She's obviously on crack cocaine. I mean, damn girl, that's Brad Pitt. You crazy? What makes me sad about it is that it seems the only reason they're getting divorced is because she doesn't want to have children. Now, not that I think a woman should ever be pressured into having children when she doesn't want them, but if her reason for not having children is because she thinks it's going to ruin her movie career, I've got to question her maturity. Actually, if that is her reason for not having children, it's better she doesn't have them because she doesn't have the emotional maturity to be a good parent. Children don't have to ruin your career; although, they definitely do change it. Also, isn't this one of the most basic things men and women are supposed to figure out before they get married? I feel especially sorry for Brad Pitt, he just wants a family. Is that so wrong? If only I wasn't already taken, Brad. I could make your dreams come true. Come to me, Brad. Let me calm your troubled heart. I don't care about my movie career.

January 12, 2005

It's too girlish for me.

"I felt disgusted today because I had to wear a ballerina outfit." This is what my daughter told me when I picked her up from school yesterday.

"Why did you feel disgusted?" I asked.

"Because it's too girlish for me," she replied.

I said, "You know, you can take this not wanting to be girlish thing too far."

"I can?"

"Yes, you can."

Somehow she's gotten it in her mind all things girl are bad. I don't mind that she's interested in things that are stereotypically perceived as being enjoyed by boys, but I am concerned that she might be equating girlishness with undesireable. That's not good. What's really interesting about all of it is that even though she thinks she just likes "boy" things, she tweaks them in a decidely feminine manner. For instance, the whole dragon obsession. She wants to play with the dragons, but she wants to play with them in a way where there's a mother and a father and a baby dragon, and the mother dragon and father dragon take care of the baby dragon. So really, she's just substituting the dragons for baby dolls, which is fine. No worries there. We got her these Fire & Ice dragons figures that come in eggs, so they hatch. She likes to take one of the empty eggs and put her stuffed Norbert (of Harry Potter fame) doll into it and then pretend it's hatching and that she's its mommy. So, I'll be watching the situation to see how it develops.

In other news, my sister called me last night because she just put our Christmas presents in the mail and she wanted to vent a bit about how our parents keep making her feel guilty about the fact that she doesn't often visit them. I love my parents, but they play the guilt card with the skill of a sharpshooter. Not that they'd ever fess up to it. Of course, I think a little bit of the guilt is warranted on my sister's side because she doesn't get to see them often. But for all the complaining they do, my parents could just as easily go out to see my sister if they really wanted. So what we've got here is a battle of wills between them and I think they're all just trying to see who cracks first. Personally, I'm getting tired of the pettiness coming from both sides. Life is too short to try and "win out" in a battle like this because, in the end, nobody wins. The end result is that no one gets to see anyone and that's that.

January 11, 2005

You could be a farmer in those clothes.

Hey everyone. I was out sick yesterday, so no post. However, as you see, I am back to work and well--relatively speaking. I've been struggling with where to put all my daughter's toys from Christmas. She has an obscene amount of stuff for a seven-year-old. This year we went to my parents' house (as I've mentioned) and my mom and dad gave her presents out the ying-yang. So, I have nowhere to put them. She's got dragons and wildlife animals all over the floor of her room. It was interesting doing the Santa shopping this year because she wanted dragon and pokemon stuff. When we checked out at Toys-r-Us, all we had was stuff you'd think was for a boy. However, we try to tell her there is no such thing as boy's toys and girl's toys and that they're all just toys. She gave all her Barbies away to her school last year. She kept all the playsets, though, because she likes to use them for her pokemon figures and animal figures and whatever else she has. When she asked for the dragons this year I told her it would be really funny if she had the dragons attack all her My Little Pony ponies. She got the My Little Pong castle and several ponies for Christmas last year. Anyway, she thought it was a pretty good idea, too. I think she's planning the battle as I write this. I'm sure in the end, the carnage will be unspeakable.

Do you want to know what sucks? Delivering girl scout cookies in bad weather. That's what I've got to do now. All the orders came in and we've got to schlep around in the muck and slush to deliver them to everyone. Really, it sucks major donkey dicks. I wish I could just have everyone come to my house and pick them up. That would be cool.

January 07, 2005

I hate winter.

There was a time when I enjoyed winter, but that time's gone. Maybe it's just Indiana, but winter just sucks now. I looking at the snow. I feel like I'm looking out upon a desert. Actually, I can pinpoint exactly when I started hating winter. It was the winter of 2000. It was the suckiest winter of human history. It was so cold for so long, and it took forever for the snow to melt. Everyday you woke up and there was more snow. It was a pretty bad winter all the way around because everyone ended up with these wicked ice dams on their roofs and caused a lot of water damage when it did finally warm up and things started to melt. That happened to be the winter we bought our house and got to experience such joys of home owernship. We hadn't even moved into the house yet and we ended up with all this water damage that had to be repaired before we moved in. And, of course, insurance never covers all of it, so right up front we had to shell out some bucks we hadn't been anticipating. That was a very traumatic winter for me. I've lived through three major blizzards in my life, and none of those winters was as bad as that winter here. I wish I could find a place where it's like autumn all year long. That's the season I like best. It's just cold enough to put on a sweater, but everything is still pretty mild. So you're not too hot and you're not too cold. It's perfect. Where in the world is a place like that? I want to know. BTW, for any of you wondering, New York escort decided to pass on the interspecies copulating, much to everyone's relief.

January 06, 2005

Now that's what I call a rack.

My husband and I were watching this plastic surgery show on Discovery Health Channel last night that showcased a 50-something woman with size 38 double I breasts who was getting a breast reduction. You read that right--38 double I. I as in igloo or Istanbul or isthmus. Do you know how large a pair of size 38 double I breasts are? They're HUGE! Mutantly huge. Her bras had to be specially made and were 72 inches around. They had to install teflon shoulder pads in the straps so they couldn't cut into her shoulders. These things hung down around her stomach, they were so large. Of course, she suffered from back pain, headaches and chronic rashes because of carrying around such a load everyday. Anyway, after the surgery, during which the doctor removed over 11 lbs of tissue, she was still left with E-cup breasts. I don't know, if you're going to get them fixed, get them fixed. I would have had the doctors cut them down to at least a C-cup. I mean, they were still pretty large afterwards. Apparently, this went over well with her husband who dubbed himself a "boob man." No shit, Sherlock.

What's really amazing is that she lived with these monstrous things for soooooo long. She said part of the reason was that she was afraid of surgery. I can appreciate that because the thought of people cutting off parts of your body is scary. But for the ever-living love of God, I can't imagine carrying around so much weight on my chest. The thing is that all the weight of her breasts were really stretching out her skin, the part of her skin right at chest level. The skin hung down a good six inches before you even began to hit the bulk of her breasts. It wasn't a pretty sight.

I was reading a little of New York escort's most recent post in which a regular client offered her at least $10,000 to have sex with his dog while he watched. She doesn't really want to do it because, appropriately, the idea of having carnal knowledge of a dog sickens her. However, she is so tempted by the idea of a large payoff that she's got 1% of hesitancy over the whole deal. She's asked her readers for advice. Most of them have come in on the side of BAD IDEA. But it raises some interesting questions about the power of money. She says the idea disgusts her, yet she's willing to entertain it because of the money. Personally, I don't think one should ever compromise their values for money because that's more akin to selling your soul than selling your body. This flesh and blood case is finite, but the soul--depending on your belief system--is infinite. To think you can exchange it for the corporeal is unfortunate, to say the least. But even if none of that matters to you, I am going to go out on a limb and suggest that as a general rule of thumb, screwing a dog (literal and figurative) will never make your life better.

January 05, 2005

The next generation of karaoke.

I almost forgot to mention the best present I got over the holiday--a Leadsinger karaoke microphone from my dear, dear mother. I've never talked about my love of karaoke before, but trust me when I say it's real, it's deep, and it's eternal, just like a mormon binding ceremony. Anyway, if you're unfamiliar with Leadsinger, which bills itself as the next generation of karaoke, you're truly missing out on one of the more magical modern inventions out there. It's endorsed by the lovely and multi-talented Debbie Gibson of '80s pop music fame. So how could you go wrong?

Bascially, everything you need is in the mic. You just plug the microphone into your television and the words appear on screen and the music plays. As simple as that you're dancing on the ceiling with Lionel or giving Celine a run for her money. I don't want to go so far as to say it's a religious experience, but it comes awfully close, I must say. My husband, daughter and I spent the evening singing, and I really think we've got a shot at being a real-life Partridge Family. No joke. We're that good.

January 04, 2005

There's no such thing as too much power.

Ya know, my brother seems to think I can't handle my power tools. One of the things on my wish list is the Paslode 900600 Impulse Angle Finish Nailer. He said he briefly thought about getting that for me for my Christmas gift but changed his mind because he thought it was "too much tool" for me. I'm like, what? There's no such thing, Jack. The manufacturer's description is below:

Get powerful fastening with the convenience of a hammer when you use this cordless finish nailer from Paslode. It drives 1-1/4- to 2-1/2-inch nails into the hardest woods allowing you to complete a variety of finish applications with one tool. Only 4.9 pounds with battery, this nailer features a depth-of-drive wheel with probe position indicator that provides precise control of nail depth in hard or soft wood, an angled magazine for easy access to corners and tight spots, and a lockout features that locks the tool at 10 nails to prevent blank firing and damage to wood surfaces. NOT recommended to be used above 5000 feet or below 20 degrees F.

I don't understand what comes across as being too powerful. I need this nailer so I can put up some crown moulding and other things I've been wanting to do around the house. I am strong, like horse. I need tools just as strong. So he got me a shirt instead. Also something from my wish list so just as appreciated, but I am not a delicate flower who can't keep up with the big boys. I want to be able to hold up the moulding and, BAM, nail that sucker in place. I believe I am justified in my choice of equipment.

January 03, 2005


K, so I'm back and work. And, of course, to make me super happy to be back, it's wet and grey and gloomy outside. Yay, I'm back in South Bend. Yay. We got back to town on Saturday and learned some shocking news yesterday. The deacon at our church has brain cancer. Everything happened while we were on vacation so we didn't get the details, but basically, they've flown him back home to Texas where oncologists there will treat him. Needless to say, everyone is praying hard for him. He is such a swell guy. He's only a couple of years younger than I am, which makes it even more distressing because he's so young. He's the pastorial council member on the Social Life Committe with me, so I've gotten to know him pretty well. Just to let you know how cool a guy he is, he makes jokes about Viagra. Anyway, they found the tumor because he was experiencing some numbness in his hand and they did an MRI just to see what was going on. That's when they found the growth; however, they didn't expect it to be cancerous because he's so young. But the biopsy showed that it was, indeed, malignant. As if it couldn't get any worse for him, it's a fast-growing tumor. It's just really shocking to find out something so terrible about someone so good. Anyway, if you feel so moved, spend a couple of seconds sending some good thoughts up to the big guy for Deacon Andy in Texas. I'm sure God will know who you're talking about. Plus, it's good karma. One day you might need a stranger to pray for you. And, seriously, he's one of the good guys and we still need him here.

We also had some tense days over the break because my brother's fiancee's housemate was on vacation in Sri Lanka when the tsunami hit. It took a couple of days before Christina (my brother's fiancee) could get in touch with her housemate's parents to find out that she was OK and trying to get back home. But still, it's overwhelming to think about the level of devastation. Some of the stories coming out of that whole thing. You know, it's like a nuclear bomb went off for those people. One second everything's fine and the next, everything's just gone. We humans think we are in so much control of our lives, and really we're not. It's sobering to say the least.

My New Year's resolution is always the same: get current passports for the three of us. This has been my New Year's resolution for about the last five years. You never know when you might want to just take off. Anyway, it's something I've got to do. This year will be it. I feel it in my bones. Happy New Year everyone.