Thursday, January 31, 2008

I'm a schoolgirl again

Braid my hair and find me some knee socks and a plaid skirt, 'cause I'm officially a student. I have a textbook. I have a notebook. I have homework. I proclaimed all of these things to my kids when I got home yesterday, and they just rolled their eyes. Killjoys!

I'll have to be careful that I don't get carried away with this whole thing, though. I'm learning how to properly do social science research. Aside from the frameworks of the thing, scientific method and such, it appears the basic premise involves spending a great deal of time peering at people and things. And that, folks, is always big fun, especially for a people-watcher like me. As a journalist, I got paid to be nosy and then write about it. Near as I can tell, this whole research gig is about the same thing:

Man on bus: Lady, why the heck are you staring at me and scribbling in that notebook?
Me: (all official sounding) Do not worry, sir. It's for science.

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Germophobe's nightmare

So, if bacteria, by their nature, multiply very quickly, and antibacterial cleaners kill 99.99 percent of bacteria, I have to wonder: What's the point? That .01 percent of bacteria will just multiply again and we'll all be back to our creepy-crawly baseline in no time. C'mon folks, find me a disinfectant, aside from napalm and a match, that'll kill 100 percent and then maybe I'll be impressed. Touting 99.99 percent is just pointless.

I'm just sayin'.

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Wednesday, January 30, 2008


I know the message in my e-mail inbox is exciting because the person tells me, in the very first sentence that it is exciting. I also know it is exciting because the entire rest of the message is in
That or this person is really, really irritated with me. Hmm ...

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Monday, January 28, 2008

Close eyes, plug nose, jump

I am either highly motivated or completely out of my mind. Seems I have talked myself into signing up for the first class in a master's program. Let's see:

High-stress job that pays the bills and little else?

Three kids at home?

Deadbeat ex who hasn't worked in years and who thinks child support is something you do to keep them from falling over?

Voluteer board work that can sometimes be a giant sucking sound?

Neglected friendships?

Well, hell, I suppose I ought to add a little coursework to the mix.

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New heights of high maintenance

Man: I'm heading home from work now after a long, long day.
Woman: I didn't feel like driving today. Come pick me up and run me on my errands.
Man: Yes, dear.

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If you've gotta end it ...

I have two very dear friends who have been in a serious relationship for several years now. They recently decided, mutually, to end the romantic side of their relationship. Apparently, they are both fine with it, which is really my chief concern. However, I have to say that their manner of calling it ranks up there in the top 10 best of all time and proves, once and for all, that they are two of the most awesome people on Earth.

Some people break up over the phone.
Some people break up in a fancy restaurant.
And some, well, they go to New Zealand and break up in the shadow of Mount Doom. "...only there can it be unmade."

Perhaps I should have said that they are the most awesome people in Middle Earth.

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Sunday, January 20, 2008

Rugged Alaska woman-in-training

After inches and inches of snow last week, my skiing partner and I had only one thought on our minds: Time for the first crack at the longer trails. 'Course, things are a bit different this year, namely that said partner now has a tiny baby. The solution? Strap her in the backpack, clip the boots in the bindings and shove off. Nearly four miles and only a single butt plant later, the little one had survived some cold toes and was well entrenched in learning what it takes to be a true Alaska girl. And Mom? She officially earned the right to call herself "The Machine."

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Thursday, January 17, 2008

Darwinian destiny

The story: A woman looks outside the house on a snowy morning as she prepares to step into her SUV and go to work. It snowed six inches the night before. What does she do? Does she put it in four-wheel-drive and punch it? Does she grab a snow shovel? Does she call a plow company? Nope. She cries. And cries and cries and calls her spouse in the middle of his work day, sobbing, to come save her.

Astute observation: In nature, there is something called survival of the fittest. It's a good thing some of us are human beings and not gazelles.

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Thursday, January 10, 2008

Preschool politico

A friend's 3-year-old son was listening to candidate Clinton speak on the radio after losing in Iowa. At the moment she started to sniffle, he burst into song:

"I want you to want me.
I need you to need me.
I'd love you to love me.
I beg you to beg me.
Didn't I, didn't I, didn't I ... see you cryin'?"

Kid has a future in campaign management. I think that's much more apropos than any other campaign theme song I have ever heard.

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My confession

Yes, folks, it's true. Up until just about a week ago, I was still *sob* on dial-up. I am working through the steps to reform and concentrating on those green, blinking lights on my new cable modem.

What? You were looking for something more sordid?

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