It's Mardi July!

Crazy Landlady made her annual mid-summer appearance this past Saturday, and let's just say she once again left little of her appearance to the imagination.

I'm not sure how much I've shared on the blog about Crazy Landlady (and I'm too lazy right now to scan through my 100+posts to check), so I will give you a brief introduction:

The first day I met Crazy Landlady, she met me at my then soon-to-be humble abode to show me the "charming" (she used that word at least a dozen times in the 20 minutes I was with her) duplex she was renting. Within the first 5 minutes, she had told me the story of the last 40 years of her life: from her grandparents dying and leaving her the money that she used to purchase the house, to the nearly 20 years she lived here while she taught elementary school, to her marrying for the first time at the age of 50 (she must be close to 70 now), her mother's recent death, and the stress of her husband's recurring back problems. As if that wasn't enough, 10 minutes further into our meeting, she had hiked up her dress and flashed me her shiny white polyester granny-panties as she toweled off her stomach and complained about the summer heat.

I am not making this up.

And yet, that apparently was not enough to offset the built-in bookshelves, working fireplace, and 1/2 block walk to work that her property offered me. 2 days later, at our second meeting, I read over and signed a year lease agreement while Crazy Landlady used the bathroom down the hall...with the door wide open...and straight in my line of sight.

Again, I repeat, I am not making this up.

The past year has afforded many opportunities for family and friends to laugh at my Crazy Landlady stories, but there hadn't been another "exhibition", so to speak, until this weekend.

Saturday morning, 10 a.m., the doorbell rings, followed by Crazy Landlady's knock and shrill voice calling my name. I open the door, in my pajamas (it was a laundry morning), and CL proceeds to walk through my house, uninvited, to my kitchen, where she proceeds to inspect the minuscule damage caused by last week's water leak and then fiddle with the light switches by the back door, trying to figure out which one must stay on to allow the new tenant in the back guesthouse to control her porch light (Crazy Landlady is very security conscious). Then she calls in Handyman, who had been cleaning out the garage.

So, there we are, the three of us --me standing in my pjs, CL talking over her white horn-rimmed glasses, and Handyman looking very uncomfortable but nodding nonetheless -- in my kitchen, with the back door open, and I should have seen it coming when she commented on the heat and reached for a paper towel. But it was early. And I wasn't expecting company. And she's quick for an old broad. And before I know what has happened...she has lifted her hot pink tank top to towel herself off...under her 70ish-year-old, white, sagging, bra-less boobs.

I didn't know whether to throw beads or throw up.

And Handyman? Well, after 25 years of working for her, he must have already seen it all because he didn't even blink; he just turned away and started dusting off the light bulb he was holding.

Meanwhile, I am standing there speechless, fighting the urge to giggle uncontrollably at the absurdity of the situation, wishing I had a video camera because people really think I make this stuff up, and thinking to myself: I just got flashed by my 70-year-old Crazy Landlady. If I didn't need therapy before, I'm gonna need it now.

Posted at 11:18 AM
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One of the many reasons that I love my Netflix account is the fact that my queue is so long that by the time a movie gets to sent to me, it has been so long since I added it to my list I can't remember why I chose it to begin with. Some people find this annoying, but I kind of like it. Makes the movies more of a surprise when I get them out of the mailbox.

A perfect example is today's laundry movie: Run, Lola, Run.

I've no idea what would possess me to order this little German flick, but it is strangely entertaining, what with it's techno-ish soundtrack, bad English dubbing, and Lola's flaming red hair bouncing around as she repeatedly runs across town replaying different versions of the same scenario (if that makes any sense at all).

And Lola has superpowers of sorts: That chic can run like the wind, and in military boots no less.

She runs so fast, they couldn't even get a clear shot for the poster.

And when she starts running down stairs, she turns all cartoony.

Stairs are Lola's red kryptonite, making her personality slightly more animated.

And she screams. I mean, time practically stops when she opens her mouth and unleashes this obnoxiously grating voice that breaks glass and apparently also has the power to influence roulette wheels.

Notice the casino patrons cowering at the power of her lungs.
(Vulgar speech bubble added by whomever I stole the pic from. Lola doesn't need obscenities. Her screech stands well enough on it's own.)

Oh, and she also can heal dying men in ambulances with the mere touch of her hand. (But I can't find a picture from that scene, so you'll just have to trust me on that one.)

Those Germans are a strange lot.

Posted at 3:59 PM

Tidbits of Trivia

Last night was weekly trivia night at a local restaurant, and while my team didn't place in the top 3 (I think we were 6th or 7th), I was very proud that I was able to contribute to the team's respectable finish with my random knowledge of 80s television and music. Not only did I correctly identify Tom Hanks as the actor who played Elise's drunken brother on Family Ties (even if my team overruled me, much to their disappointment), but I also remembered that the smash hit Two of Hearts was recorded not by Tiffany or Debbie Gibson, but rather by the exceptionally frizzy-haired Stacey Q. Of course, ever since that question, the song has been on repeat in my head, so I am attempting to exorcise the musical demon by sending it out into the wold for all to hum.


Posted at 8:17 AM

Desperately Seeking Cinnamon

Yesterday, in a fit of domesticity, I decided I would make cinnamon rolls. Those in the know realize how rare an event Daisy cooking anything has become in the last few years. While I used to be a pretty mean baker in my early 20s, I have since moved more into the Lorelai Gilmore school of thought on cooking: Why cook when you can dial? Did you know that they actually have cookie delivery places here in Texas? Not the nasty, tasteless, shortbread Cookie Bouquet things; I'm talking oatmeal raisin, chocolate chip, snickerdoodley goodness, baked fresh and brought right to your doorstep in 30-45 minutes. (I so miss living downtown sometimes.)

For whatever reason (possibly shear boredom), yesterday morning I decided that I was going to bake, and bake I did. I mixed and kneaded and rolled and greased for at least an hour. And the result?

Cinnamon roll paperweights.

That's right. Fist size clumps of what would have been yummy, delicious, gooey-great, cinnamony rolls...if only they had risen.

Note to self: when in the process of baking for the first time in several years, if the thought even crosses your mind that the yeast may be a tad past its prime, then it is probably safe to call it Sly Stallone (I caught Daylight on TV the other day, and he was looking way old back then. No telling what he looks like now.) and toss it out. Otherwise, you not only lose the hour of your life you spent making the damn dough, but you also lose the second hour it takes to clean up the ginormous mess you made making the damn dough and then throwing it out.

And, of course, all that work makes a girl hungry. So you find yourself standing in your flour covered pajamas, listening to your stomach growling, without a cinnamon roll in sight, having to decide if you want to get dressed and go to the store and settle for Pillsbury cinnamon rolls or if you can possibly fake out your cinnamon-craving brain with a combination of pistachios and chips and salsa, since those are the only snack-type things you happen to have on hand.

Being the lazy vacation bum I am this week, I tried the latter of the two options, and while Julio's tortilla chips are heavenly (like Doritos for grown ups), they are kinda like giving a crack addict a Red Bull and expecting it to do the trick. There is no replacement for cinnamon in Daisy's world, so I have been craving cinnamon for the past 20 hours now.

Good thing Big Sis and Favorite Youngest Niece are coming to town to day for some mall time and the only cinnamon treat Daisy likes almost as much as the aforementioned cinnamon rolls and snickerdoodles would be the cinnamon pretzle sticks from Autnie Anne's. A couple of orders of those and I may be almost satisfied.

Posted at 6:18 AM

It's not easy being green...

Late last night, I got this image from the Winged Monkey:

The email subject read simply: Sunset and 72 degrees (where I'm staying).

Now, almost a month ago, WM spent a week in the mountains...where I would give anything to live some day. That trip, he was kind enough not to send me pictures of the mountains, and even if he had, it would have been o.k. because I had just gotten back from some globe trotting of my own, including a couple of days in the beautiful Swiss Alps.

Today, though? Today is supposed to hit 103 degrees down here in Texas, and sitting next to any of our man-made lakes (There is only one natural lake in the whole state, in case you didn't know. We dig our own down here.) is really just a tease since 4th of July included a sea-doo ride in what felt like bath water.

Needless to say, I am a wee bit jealous of the W'Monkey and his current retreat up north.

And then the worst came this morning, when he replied to my response: "Is there a hammock? 'Cause if there is I can be there by morning. ;)" (We both have a soft spot for hammocks, but our hammock time at the lake 4th of July was cut short by the fact that mosquitoes apparently have a thing for hammocks as well, and they also have a thing for Daisy who is pretty sure she really did contract the dreaded malaria.) His answer: "I didn't want to be cruel, but yes there is a hammock!!!"

Notice the triple exclamation point rubbing in the fact that he is in paradise while I am sweltering in the 3rd circle of hell. (I do have air conditioning, so it's not completely unbearable.)

Notice, also, that there is no invitation for me to join him appended to his not-so-subtle nana-nana-boo-boo statement. I mean, he could have at least sent me a cute little "Can you be here by dinner time?" or something.

Granted, he is up there for a conference of sorts, and he is a guest in some folks' home, and it's probably not kosher to say "Hey, I invited my girlfriend up, and she'll be here for dinner," and I was only half serious when I said I could be there by morning, but he could have played along so I don't have to focus so much on the fact that I am completely envious of his current locale.

That's o.k. I have a trip to Boston in two weeks, and I'm pretty sure the furnace that is home will continue to heat up, so I can send some nice snapshots of the harbor ad the ocean to the WM while he sweats it out down here. All's fair, after all.

Posted at 8:18 AM
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Comings and Goings

I seem to be spending quite a bit of time in and around airports lately, and I've come to the following conclusion: airports are schizophrenic places.

Emotions are high in those terminals, and "conflicted" doesn't even begin to cover it. You see, there is the excitement of the upcoming vacation or the dread of the next in a series of unending business trips. Either of these is heightened by the stress of the repetitive mental checklist: Did I pack my toothbrush? Did I remember the cell phone charger? Did I put both shoes in the bag, or did I forget to snag the left one out from under the bed?

And then there is the leaving part. Goodbye kisses that are distracted by the nagging feeling that you left your alarm clock on so that your upstairs neighbor, having been driven mad by your airport departure alarm of 5:00 a.m. 4 days straight, will have no choice but to slash the tires of your car as it sits in the driveway, patiently awaiting your return.

Or perhaps it's a return journey, in which case, you are battling the exhaustion mixed with the shear giddiness at the thought of your own bed, your own pillow. A temporary high, of course, because these daydreams are squelched by the announcement that your flight has been delayed for 4 more hours due to sun spots or some such cosmic anomaly.

I'm kind of surprised you really don't hear about more people just wigging out in airports: "Woman found roaming terminal, babbling incoherently, occasionally stopping to chant "3-1-1" in an inhumanely high-pitched voice as she tosses zip-lock baggies at passers-by."

And what about those left behind? Those dropping off loved ones at the gates to the gauntlet that is airport security, then having to find the way out to the wrong airport exit as the missing commences, slowly at first, but inevitable nonetheless. They have nothing to look forward to except traffic on the way home and an empty house at the end of the drive.

Of course, an empty house does mean sole possession of the Tivo remote... ;)

Posted at 7:05 AM
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83 degrees and counting

It was 83 degrees when I woke up this 7:00 a.m. There is something inherently wrong with 83 degrees and 7:00 a.m. having anything whatsoever to do with one another, especially when you add in the 65% humidity. That makes it feel like it's 87 degrees. Seriously. On the AccuWeather website, it actually gives you the official "Feels Like" temperature, and it said it "Feels Like" 87 degrees. At 7:00 freakin' a.m! Made me "Feel Like" passing out when I stepped outside.

Needless to say, my run this morning was downgraded to a walk, but I did get my lazy butt out of bed, put on my shoes, and head outside for a good 2 miles. Maybe tomorrow I will drag my fanny out at 5:00 a.m. and it will only "Feel Like" 85 degrees.

On the up side: my kitchen is actually stocked with food, including the yummy lemonade I made yesterday and Julio's (amazing) seasoned tortilla chips that my sister-in-law brought me from Austin last weekend. Little Miss Sunshine is on USA this morning, so I have quality entertainment to watch with my breakfast, which will include toast made from Whole Foods' rustic Italian bread which makes the best toast on the planet.

Not a horrible way to start the weekend...once I recover from the earlier heat stroke. Now excuse me while I watch Greg Kinear steal a dead body from a hospital so his family can make his daughter's beauty pageant. Now that is some serious family bonding!

Posted at 8:53 AM
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I love Rhett Miller, and now I have more evidence as to why.

I like my musicians smart. :)

Mime 4 and I agree on our favorite part:
I love women, and the idea of women, and I love songs about girls, and I would write a million songs about girls before I would write one song about nuclear disarmament. Although, I believe whole-heartedly in the latter.

Posted at 11:16 AM

She's Back!

So, it's be a while. Had a trip to D.C. for a work conference (aka a bunch of computer nerds getting together to share new toys in a convention center with spotting wifi coverage), spent a little time in my pajamas on the couch, and then spent the 4th at the parents' house.

Winged Monkey met the family for the first time. The whole family. We're talking parents, siblings, nieces & nephews, and even aunt, uncle, & cousin. WM seems to have survived the weekend relatively unscathed (thank God my family believes in beer and margaritas), but I believe I may have noticed a slight tic today that he didn't have before the weekend. He's still hanging out on the couch with me, so he's either in shock or he's made of some pretty stern stuff. Of course, he could also be planning his exit strategy while watching the Bond marathon on USA this afternoon.

I, on the other hand, spent half of the evening trying to get my eyes to work after making the mistake of petting my sister's cat and then promptly using the same hand to take out my contacts...without stopping to wash my hands. Being massively allergic to animals of the feline variety means my hygienic shortcut caused my eyes to turn bright red and swell up to three times their normal size. Then the itching set in. This is the part of the post where I put in a plug for Zyrtec, without which my fourth would have been a lot less colorful...since I would have been blind.

WM and I agreed that the economy can't be in that bad of shape, since we were able to watch private firework shows put on by multiple groups at the lake. I suspect more than a few thousand dollars were blown up in the night sky around the lake that night; three to four hours of pretty much non-stop fireworks can not be cheap. And that was after the air show, during which the pilots re-enacted Tora Tora, dogfights and all.

Gotta get back into the swing of the blogosphere, but first, I plan to spend this evening eating Thai food. Apparently mangoes are in season, so my friendly Thai phone waiter talked me into adding some mango sticky rice to my order this evening. I'll let you know how it turns out...

Posted at 6:27 PM
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Daisy's Tweets

My Momma Taught Me To Share

Tag, you're it!