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Showing posts from September, 2007

If I Only I Could Be In Two Places at One Time...

I had a great time last night hanging with the band. But, it would have been great to also be in Knoxville, IA.

Yes, Knoxville, Iowa.

I got a phone call from Mike Finnegan yesterday afternoon. He was in Knoxville getting ready to go the local dirt track for the races. He was already several beers in and really jazzed about the upcoming evening. Can't say that I blame him.

See, Tony Stewart, Ryan Newman and Ken Schrader were all scheduled to race that night. How sweet is that?! Definitely an experience of a lifetime to see NASCAR cup racers mix it up on the dirt.

Apparently, it was quite the experience since Mike felt compelled to text me at 12:30 this morning to tell me all about it. I was in the middle of the recording session then so I couldn't respond much but did tell him, "Dude, you're drunk." Which he denied but since his text messages weren't exactly in English he had no defense.

I talked to him on the way home and he was still buzzing. He and his …

Way Cool

After the house concert, the kids in Big Wide Grin decided they needed to record a chorus for their upcoming holiday album. Since they were all travelling the next day, they set up an impromptu studio in Jeanne's guest bedroom. All it took were two microphones, a computer, a mixer thingie and three headsets. They invited us to come watch them work so I took a beer in, plopped down on the bed and watched the action.

It was quite interesting. They did several takes, replayed different versions through the computer and talked music stuff while they were doing it. I loved listening to the interaction as they decided how to punch up certain words, analyzed without any ego at all how each piece sounded and discussed how to blend it all together.

Lawrence offered me a set of headphones so I could hear the replay and I was able to kid myself that I was part of the creative process. They did ask our opinion a few times so I kinda was, really.

At one point, they wanted a high note on a …

Guess I Need to Check This Guy Out...

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Chris Dodd
Score: 45Agree
Immigration
Taxes
Stem-Cell Research
Abortion
Social Security
Line-Item Veto
Energy
Marriage
Death Penalty
Disagree
Iraq
Health Care
-- Take the Quiz! --

Catnip (formerly Cheap Bastard) sent this to me. My second highest match was Hillary with a score of 40. There were a bunch of Dems after that (like all of them, I think) followed by my top Republican match, Rudy Giuliani. That's not so surprising since lots of people think he's really a Democrat in Republican clothing.

House Concert - Big Wide Grin

I went to a great house concert last night. The band was Big Wide Grin and I had no idea what they were going to be like before the show started. Their stuff was a blend of folk/gospel/alt country. At least, that's how I describe it. The three members were all very talented and they really appeared to enjoy each other and performing. I love it when the band is into a show and not just phoning it in.

Karl Werne plays a mean guitar. He did some absolutely amazing picking and also provided some smooth vocals. He's also got some serious rock star hair going on.

Elaine Dempsey brought a Bonnie Raitt type vocal to the show and played an acoustic base that sounded wonderful. She offered to let me play it but I declined since the only musical instrument I can play is the Vibra-Slap. I have to admit, though, that I'm tempted to go check one of those instruments out.

L.E. Lambert (Lawrence) was phenomenal. The phrase "voice like an angel" is overused but it's exa…

Happy Anniversary To Me!

Today marks 9 years with my current employer. There are times when I feel like it can't possibly be that long but, most of the time, it feels like I've spent an eon there.

It must not be too bad, though, because I last updated my resume 9 ½ years ago. One of my work buds and I did set a goal to update our resumes…that was in 2005, I think. Neither one of us has done it. Mostly because it's going to be too hard to put everything we do down in a nicely ordered document.

Here's the list of my official titles, so far:

Project Manager
Project Manager/Help Desk Supervisor
Project Manager
Database Administrator/Project Manager
IT Manager – Business Support

What those titles don't show is the other stuff. For example, I've been programming from nearly the beginning of my tenure until…well, this week, actually. I also still do Database Admin work and Project Management. Oh, and the Help Desk is back under my control again. I've also been on call 24-7 for not only …

Economics Demand Curve Applied to My Life

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Here's the key to my A in Econ (under-grad and grad classes). The demand curve is shaped like a D. It was really all you needed to know.



I've made a practical application of that to my personal life in the following chart:





Replace multi-task with price and wine with quantity and it completely mimics the demand curve. At the moment, with several glasses of wine in me and the struggles with juggling concurrent IMs, emails and phone calls, this seems like a really smart, almost brilliant, post.

Tomorrow, with no wine in my system and no conflicting events happening, I may be like, "WTH were you thinking? That was entirely stupid!"

Yeah, Right

I've had Travelocity constantly checking airfares to Salt Lake City because I knew I was going up there this summer and I haven't turned it off.

Both of my trips cost about $250.

They just sent me an email saying the price is now $158.

Let me think about that.

Phoenix weather: high of 99, low of 77.

Salt Lake weather: high of 77, low of 55.

Even with the really cheap airfare, I think I'll stay home.

Anyone Have a Cure for Hypochondria?

I'm an admitted hypochondriac. It makes it hard sometimes to know if I'm really sick or just convinced myself that I am.

My nose started running at lunch today. This afternoon, I started sneezing and now I think I have a fever.

At least my forehead feels warm. And, it's felt warm the 20 times I've felt it in the past hour. I don't have a thermometer to check it, though, so it could just be that my hands are cold.

Add that up with the fact that I've spent some time this week with someone who has a cold (no exchange of bodily fluids of any sort though) and I'm pretty sure I'm coming down with something.

Of course, I have a fully booked weekend coming up so the drama queen in me is already stressing over what I may miss if I'm really sick.

My throat's starting to feel scratchy now, too.

Sigh. I make it not easy to be me, sometimes.

Good Omen!

I just turned on my shuffle. It's always set to random and the first song was one of my all-time faves, Jessie's Girl.

I'm taking that as a sign that it's going to be a great day!

Concert Review - Dave Matthews Band

I have a friend at work who's been telling me for years that I need to see DMB. He's also a Parrot Head so I respect his opinion. Another friend chimed in with his encouragement so I said I would go this year when the group hit town.

One issue - I only knew three DMB songs. My friend burned me a CD with a few more songs (I know, it's wrong but I bent the rules) so I would know a few more before the show.

I invited the Rocket Scientist (new character to my stories, we'll see if he sticks around) to go with me and he knew DMB even less than I did. So, we were two fish out water. I had two thoughts during the evening. One, that we had entered a foreign country where everyone but us knew the language and the customs. The other thought was that our experience must be what it's like for Buffett virgins to go to a show.

Everyone, but us, recognized the songs from one chord or less. Sometimes, it was just a matter of what instrument Dave was getting ready to play. Th…

Movie Review - Highlander, The Source

I loved the TV series The Highlander. I thought it was well written, well acted, had some great characters and nicely developed story arcs. I also thought Adrian Paul was the best Immortal out there.

Poor Adrian Paul - clearly, he's broke.

There's no other reason he would make a movie as bad as this one. When I say bad, I mean horrible. The acting was bad (especially the chick). The storyline was nearly non-existent. The special effects looked like they were done by middle school students.

I can just picture the conversation:

"I know, let's have the actor stand totally still and have the bad guy move all around him then we'll speed it up on replay and blur it. It'll look really cool!"

"Yeah, and we'll put lots of white make-up on the bad guy so he looks like a ghost. This is going to rock!"

Without going too much into the plot (because two sentences would cover it), I have something to say about the women involved with Immortals. For non fanboys a…

I Can't Escape My Destiny...

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Got this from Tkay and the results made me laugh out loud. I am so Hermione but I think I would make an interesting Tinkerbell.

It's Officially Fall To Me

I don't judge winter, spring, summer and fall by the calendar. It's either hot, really hot or warm here in Arizona and I have my own marker for the change in seasons.

That marker would be air conditioning.

Last night and this morning, I didn't need my A/C in my car. That means it's fall.

When I turn off the A/C in the house (and turn on the heat a day later) it will be winter. Just in case you were wondering...

Book Review - You've Been Warned

If you're expecting You've Been Warned by James Patterson and Howard Roughan to be a 'typical' Patterson book, you're going to be disappointed.

Sure, there are short chapters and a first person narrative. But, other than that it's not at all what you'd expect.

The story revolves around a young woman in New York City who's got secrets in her past and present, obsessions for her camera and her married boyfriend, serious nightmares and who sees dead people. It's supernatural poppycock for the most part and the "surprise" ending wasn't that much of a surprise.

Fortunately, it was a quick read but I have to say I could very happily have spent my time on something more productive and enjoyable.

Book Review - The Girls

I find a lot of my reading material by browsing Amazon's top 100 list. I open two IE windows so I can go back and forth between Amazon and the library system so I can request holds as I gander. Works pretty slick for me.

I saw The Girls by Lori Lansen a few weeks ago and was almost intrigued enough to read it. It's the story of conjoined twins, Ruby and Rose. They're joined at the head but have distinctive minds and bodies. The story is told by each woman as they're writing their autobiographies as they approach their 30th birthdays.

I said I was almost intrigued enough to read it but I passed. It seemed a little too Oprah book like for me. However, this month's book club hostess picked it for us to read and I'm glad she did as it was very good.

The two voices of the twins were distinct and the author did a great job of dropping little bombshells the were explained later as she switched back and forth between each woman. That technique really sucked you in…

It's an Honor

KT Cat made a cool video for me. Go check it out!

What's Your Inner Pirate?

Here be mine...

You are The Cap'n!
Some men and women are born great, some achieve greatness and some slit the throats of any scalawag who stands between them and unlimited power. You never met a man - or woman - you couldn't eviscerate. You are the definitive Man of Action, the CEO of the Seven Seas, Lee Iacocca in a blousy shirt and drawstring-fly pants. You’re mission-oriented, and if anyone gets in the way, that’s his problem, now isn’t? Your buckle was swashed long ago and you have never been so sure of anything as your ability to bend everyone to your will. You will call anyone out and cut off his head if he shows any sign of taking you on or backing down. If one of your lieutenants shows an overly developed sense of ambition he may find more suitable accommodations in Davy Jones' locker. That is, of course, IF you notice him. You tend to be self absorbed - a weakness that may keep you from seeing enemies where they are and imagining them where they are not.




What's …

A Little Help For Today

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This will help the landlubbers with today's linguistic celebration:








Thanks to Griz for the pic!

It's Like Christmas for Parrot Heads

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Today is the Official Talk Like a Pirate Day.

For Parrot Heads who are used to saying "Arghh!" at every opportunity, this is their one shot to sounds like everyone else for the day and have a legitimate excuse for sounding silly.

In honor of the day, here's a little quiz.





My pirate name is:


Dirty Mary Bonney



You're the pirate everyone else wants to throw in the ocean -- not to get rid of you, you understand; just to get rid of the smell. You can be a little bit unpredictable, but a pirate's life is far from full of certainties, so that fits in pretty well. Arr!

Get your own pirate name from piratequiz.com.
part of the fidius.org network

Sting Schedule

The 2008 Sting Schedule came out today:


DATE OPPONENT TIME
Friday, Jan. 4 vs. Calgary Roughnecks 7:30 p.m.
Saturday, Jan. 12 @ Colorado Mammoth 7:00 p.m.
Friday, Jan. 18 vs. Portland Lumberjax 7:30 p.m.
Thursday, Jan. 24 @ Portland Lumberjax 8:30 p.m.
Saturday, Jan. 26 @ Rockester Knighthawks 6:00 p.m.
Saturday, Feb. 2 @ Edmonton Rush 7:30 p.m.
Friday, Feb. 8 @ Calgary Roughnecks 7:30 p.m.
Sunday, Feb. 17 vs. Edmonton Rush 2:00 p.m.
Friday Feb. 29 vs. Colorado Mammoth 7:30 p.m.
Saturday, Mar. 8 @Calgary Roughnecks 7:30 p.m.
Sunday, Mar. 16 NLL All-Star Game, Edmonton TBD
Friday, Mar. 21 vs. Edmonton Rush 7:30 p.m.
Saturday, Mar. 29 vs. Colorado Mammoth 7:00 p.m.
Saturday, Apr. 5 @ Portland Lumberjax 8:30 p.m.
Friday, Apr. 11 @ San Jose Stealth 8:30 p.m.
Saturday, Apr. 12 vs. San Jose Stealth 7:00 p.m.
Saturday, Apr. 19 vs. Minnesota Swarm 7:00 p.m.

I'm psyched and I already put all of the games into my PDA so I don't double book anything. I just wish we coul…

Group Exercise

Our last IT Dept training was a situational analysis exercise. I divided everyone into four random teams and gave each team one of the following cases. They got about 30 minutes to put together their responses then each team presented their question and response to the group. The entire group then discussed each response and offered commentary.Case #1: Critical Cross-Functional Team Problem

You notice that another team member is pulling less than a full share of the team's load.

If you were the team leader, what would you do?
If you were another team member, what would you do?

Case #2: Team-Meeting Time Robbers

You are running a team meeting. A lot of time seems to be wasted because of irrelevant conversation.

What should you do right now?
What should you do in the future?

Case #3: Personal Priority Setting

You are a member of a part-time product development team that is working on an important new product. However, you also have other responsibilities associated with the ongoing w…

Poker Strangeness

I played poker with the boys on Friday night. There were only ten of us so we all started at the same table. I was the only girl (I like that ratio but truly don't mind when there are other women there) and the funniest (to me) thing happened.

The guys got worried about "offending" me!

Me, who swears like the proverbial sailor and never gives up a shot at the double entendre, that's who they were worried about.

The roots go back to the first time we played where I let it be known that I objected to the use of one specific slang word related to a women's genitalia. Well, we've decided there are three words along those lines that I don't like.

However, you can pretty much say whatever else you want to - really!

I got several "Oh, I'm sorry I said that" and "I hope I didn't offend you" comments throughout the night and I just kept saying, "Don't worry about it!"

It was surreal.

I guess I got them on tilt because I came …

I've Got a Name!

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Cow here again posting an update.

I just wanted to let you all know that I am enjoying my new life in Salt Lake City. I've made a new friend in Manatee, Rhett's girlfriend. She's not quite what I expected when I first heard about her because, frankly, she's a dog. I don't mean that she's ugly, I mean she's literally a dog. Not that there's anything wrong with that...well, there sorta is.

The kids in SLC got behind the idea that I needed a new name because Cow was too generic. They had a contest and everything! It was fun! There were lots of suggestions and I really like what they finally came up with.

My new name is Cindy (short for Cinderella).

Concert Review - Mulligan, Mulligan and Burns

I'd been looking forward to last Wednesday's acoustic show with D. Mulligan, Mark Mulligan and Brent Burns for a long time. They're three of my favorite independent musicians and I love their stuff. It was well worth the wait, though.

The venue, Fiddler's Dreams is an interesting choice for our crowd. It's a no smoking, no alcohol facility attached to a Quaker meeting hall. They do strictly acoustic music and it seats only about 50 people. (Of the 50 people there, I think I knew almost 40 so I was in prime Butterfly mode.)

Since there's no alcohol, nearly all of the 50 people who were at the show headed over to a nearby bar/restaurant right after the 2+ hour performance. Very quickly headed over.

Dave started out the show with three songs from his CD. While he didn't do my favorite, Collapsible Plans, he did perform my second favorite, Don't Wake Up. Looking back to my review of his CD, I see that I've flip flopped my top two. I guess I like the darker…

Sweet!

I came in to work today to find a bag on my chair.

In the bag was a Jimmie Johnson lunchbox.

In the lunchbox was my favorite candy, Smarties. (Go ahead, take the easy shot on that one if you want to.)

I suspect it's from Sugar Daddy but I haven't confirmed that.

Have I mentioned that I love presents?

What Political Party...?

Democrat92%Green75%Anarchism75%Socialist42%Communism33%Fascism17%Nazi8%Republican0%
What Political Party Do Your Beliefs Put You In?
created with QuizFarm.com

I'm not sure this is the best quiz but it cracked me up that my Republican result was zero.

My Head Hurts, My Feet Froze...

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...and you probably don't want to hear about my feelings towards Jesus.

What a fun weekend I had but I'm still feeling it.

I had an uneventful flight on Friday and Gary was there waiting for me. We headed off to Ogden (technically, Roy) and gabbed a bit at his house before heading to The Horse.

I have been dying to go to The Horse! It's Gary's local club (Utah has those strange drinking laws) and Gary has told me so many stories of his (mis)adventures there, the people who work there and the other club members that I felt like I already knew the place.


The Horse of Course!It wasn't quite how I pictured it, though. I had in mind a little bar on the side of the highway in the middle of nowhere (like in Wisconsin). The Horse was in a strip mall right in town. The inside, however, lived up to my expectations. Really dark and cozy but nice.

Everyone was super friendly and I got to meet the owners and Kelly the bartender and probably another ten people (maybe more). Gary and …

Cow Goes to Utah

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Hi there, my name is Cow and Kathy's letting me do a guest post on her blog. She's a giver, you know. As you can see from my pictures, I'm from Iowa. Kathy and I met in the Des Moines airport at the beginning of July when she was on her Midwest Tour (I'm sure she'll post about that any day now). I'm not proud to admit it, but I was homeless then and living in a gift shop. It was no life for a cow, believe me. Kathy told me she knew someone who would give me shelter and would treat me well so I went to Arizona with her and waited patiently to get to my new, final home. Here's my story in pictures...
Hanging on Kathy's couch the night before we left for Utah.
It was a short flight but I was beat from the excitement so I took a rest on Gary's chair.

Gary took us to his "club" in Ogden which is some strange Utah thing where you have to be member to get a drink. We didn't have anything like that in Iowa - there's beer aplenty there!

I reall…

Why Pretend?

I'm at work but leaving for the airport in 20 minutes. I've been looking for something constructive to do in that 20 minutes but I'm just kidding myself. I'm too antsy to get anything done anyway.

Maybe I should just leave now...

Are You Ready for Some Football?

I sure am!

I wanted to get home in time tonight to catch the whole game but, of course, I got stuck late at the office. The game's going my way, though, since I picked the Colts to win.

Here are my weekly picks and the confidence points I assigned to them:

Ind(8)
Den(10)
Was(11)
Pit(13)
Jac(14)
KC(5)
GB(1)
StL(4)
Min(6)
NE(16)
Sea(15)
Det(3)
SD(7)
Dal(12)
Bal(9)
SF(2)

Per tradition, I picked the Pack to win but only put one point on them. I'm playing in two Yahoo! Pick 'Em games this year, one with the Parrot Heads and the other at work. The first is for bragging rights but the second has a small amount of money riding on it every week.

Anticipating Brrrs

The forecast for Park City, UT:

Today: High: 67° Low: 48°
Tomorrow: High: 73° Low: 52°
Saturday: High: 72° Low: 52°
Sunday: High: 64° Low: 45°
Monday: High: 63° Low: 45°

My peeps up there have been warning me to bring my winter clothes and I think they're right!

Too bad I live in Arizona and don't have winter clothes...

But, I Had Aces!

I've been obsessing over one poker hand from Friday night. Not on how I played it but the reaction it got.


The guy to the left of me either just called or raised, I can't remember that part. I looked down to have pocket Aces so I raised.


He said to me, "You must be pretty proud of those Aces."


I said something like, "Yes, I am."


The hand played out and I won. He had pocket Queens and he was bitter that he lost. Really bitter.


I told him, "You knew what I had."


To which he replied, "Well, the way you play, you could have had anything..."


He then brought it up the rest of the night like it was my fault.


OK, let's look at the facts.


I had the better starting hand.


It held up.


Dude needed to let it go. But, I bet I hear about it next time.

Movie Reviews

I managed to watch a few flicks on cable this weekend.

Poseiden

This is the remake with Kurt Russell and Josh Lucas. Thank goodness for the latter because looking at his gorgeous face almost made up for how boring this movie was. There are only so many times one can watch people swimming through water filled passageways before saying, "Enough already!" I didn't care for any of the characters and was actually actively hoping that one of them would die because she was so annoying (religious girl). I wouldn't have watched this on my own but I was trapped getting my hair done while it was on.

The Breakup

Jennifer Aniston made this an okay flick for me. I don't know if she was using the movie as some sort of catharsis for Brad Pitt leaving her for that icky chick (come on, she wore a vial of Billy Bob's blood, ew!) but I had a lot of sympathy for her character. I also quite liked that Vince Vaughan's character realized he was a complete ass but it was too la…

I'm Going To Freeze!

I'm off to Utah again this weekend (I've been home for over a week which is way too long). Roger sent me an email that he thinks that the weather's going to be great - 72 degrees.

That's not great, that's borderline chilly.

I checked the extended forecast for Park City where I'll be on Sunday: High 68°F Low 51°F.

Jiminy Christmas - that's frakking freezing!

At least Ogden, where I'll be on Friday, is going to be warmer: High 79°F Low 58°F.

Jimmie Wins!

I managed to avoid yelling at the TV in the final laps of tonight's race only because I distracted myself by IMing with Lewie and Mike and blogging.

OMG, how exciting! Jimmie was fast but looked like he was losing ground there for a while. Poor Mike had to put up with my constant updates for the past hour but, dang, it was good stuff.

If Jeff Gordon doesn't win next week, Jimmie will start the Chase (the final 10 races of the season) in first place.

Parrot Grande - The Highlight

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The Arizona Parrot Head Club has been collecting items to send to our troops overseas. We mail to the family and friends of our club members who are serving over there and we send all sorts of things. CDs, book, toiletries, food and writing supplies are just some of the items we've collected. Our club mailman, Bob, has mailed about 1,800 pounds so far.

We had a special visitor at our Sunday Survivor's Breakfast at Parrot Grande. Club members Bob and Sue Rohn's nephew, Michael Yount, had been the recipient of some of our packages and he's, thankfully, now back in the States. He wanted to thank us for our actions and he presented the club with a U.S. flag that had been flown in Iraq on July 4th.

It was a special, special moment.

Michael and Bob got a standing ovation and there were lots of people wiping their eyes. It really brought home why we've been doing this project and how much it means to those folks who are so far from home.


Sue and Bob Rohn, Michael Yount and me…

Parrot Grande Saturday Night - Party Followed by a Party

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Saturday night at Parrot Grande found us dancing and singing along with Jim Asbell and the Tropiholics. What a great party it was! Everyone had a great time and the dance floor stayed full most of the time.

Of course, there was a conga line and it was led by Lisa of the Tropiholics. I managed to avoid getting sucked into it; it's just not my thing. But, the vast majority of the folks took part.

The band sounded great. Even after the many tequila shots that Pirate Rick was feeding them. It seemed like every time I turned around, he was carrying a tray of shots in from the bar. Yikes!

Jim told us that we were a great group and, while he may have been blowing smoke, he said that the number of folks still partying at the end of the night was more than they're used to.

But, we weren't all done partying.

We closed out the ballroom and headed up to the penthouse floor of the resort. There's a big common area up there and we must have had 40 people hanging out and continuing the fe…