Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Fleas Navidog

(can't take credit for the phrase, but the rest is all me.)

(click image to enlarge)

Monday, December 19, 2011

Opposites Attract

We've got plane tickets to the states. Who's excited and has two thumbs?

This girl. Who should probably have taken a second to brush her hair. Sheesh.

It has come to my attention, that every time we (meaning Fiance and I) have a BIG THING (like plane tickets) which needs to happen, we become the cliche of opposites attract. And every time I think it, I always have this flashback to one of my classes in grad school, where we were talking about people with addictions.

The basic gist of the discussion was that it is typical for a person who has chosen to go to rehab and battle an addiction to do well while in a safe environment, but that when they re-enter society, it becomes hard for them to continue "on the wagon" because, as my professor put it:

"People that are healthy mentally are always drawn to their natural opposite for a relationship, in a way to complete their self. Those who are unwell seek comfort in what they already know, and thus, are attracted to people who are very similar [others with addictions]."

So when those days come that we need to tackle a BIG THING, and I want to rip my hair out over it, I take comfort in the fact that we are clearly VERY HEALTHY PEOPLE.

I kid, but really.

Typically, when I have a BIG THING that needs to get done, it will pick at me until I do it. So I do it early and check it off the list, then go back to my cup of coffee, stress-free.

Fiance, works pretty well under pressure, and thus sees a deadline for a BIG THING as something in the future, that he'll get to eventually. He drinks his coffee before he bothers with the THING.

Neither approach is particularly good or bad, they are just different (Let's be real, you know I'm typing that sentence thinking that my way is way better. But I need to give Fiance credit in that he does get BIG THINGS done, it's just a different timeline.). Unfortunately, the opposite part lends itself to setting me up for being either a really big nag, or a nutcase. Neither of which particularly look good on me (or anyone really, come on now).

While I don't revel in sharing my "dark side," it's worth being honest about it. I loathe, with every fiber of my being, the idea of being a nag, so I avoid it as much as I can. Generally that means the only thing left is being a nutcase. I can always feel it coming, and it makes me so upset knowing I'm about to go off my hinges, it literally makes me more of a nutcase.

Yeah. So that's great. Color me proud.

The BIG THING from this past weekend was, again, booking the plane tickets for our Christmas trip home. And once it was done and I'd showed off all kinds of ugly about it, I set out to wrap all of our Christmas presents in order to calm down in my own little OCD happy place. We have a lot of presents, so that ended up being a pretty good chunk of time.

Is there something for YOU in there?
Cripes, probably - I think I've wrapped at least half of Monterrey at this point.

On the up-side of the BIG THING OPPOSING FORCES HYPOTHESIS (we've been watching a lot of Big Bang here), I'm not the only one who recognizes we work a little differently. Fiance gets it, and if I can be super gushy for a second, it's part of what makes me so happy to know I'm totally gonna marry this dude. As you may know, I make him a note - a doodle - each day to take to work. Today, I got a note of my own.

(in case it's a little hard to read, L-R, Top to Bottom:)
  1. Hi Kp! This is my first comic. Bare with me.
  2. This is your Fiance _____ (name withheld to protect the innocent! ha). He is not a skilled artist.
  3. I noticed you looked happy and content while wrapping presents: [pretty girl]
  4. I was a bit ADD & Cold "what's ya doing?"
  5. ...sometimes I know it is difficult to be with me when I'm bouncing off the wall and all you'd like is some peace and quiet, peace and shhh...
  6. You just showed up & smell pretty. (I had just gotten out of the shower. Apparently I can recommend Suave's Almond and Honey body soap.)
  7. Anyway I just wanted to pass to you a message and thought a comic was a good idea. "Hi" "Hi"
  8. Dear love, I know travel and not having a plan will/does stress you out. I promise it will work out. I love you!
  9. Moving here was stressful, but we made it.
  10. Getting the dog here was stressful, but he made it. [Tail of doom] "woof. yeah, I told ya."
  11. Going home for the holidays will be stressful, but it will work out. [candy cane] [tequila]
  12. I know if things change, it will be stressful. But it will work out. Just keep one thing in mind: I love you. [heart] 4-EVER.

To that effect, we're flying back to the states this week - spending some time in the midwest, and then coming back to Mexico before the New Year. There's a lot to do and a lot of people to see in that short time, so FYI - blogging's going to be a bit sparse [or non-existent] in the next week or so. Perhaps you should take this opportunity to go out and see the world, make a friend, or just read the entire archive a few times. I'll leave that up to you.

1. Even if you're not a real big drinker, you have to admit beer companies have some awesome marketing strategies. Case in point: Fiance and I went out to eat the other night, and our waiter gave us this hilarious Corona... santa headband? Honestly I think it makes him look like Albert Einstein. Which I think was a comment the nerd in him was totally geeked about.

2. Out of curiosity, I took Yahoo!'s "which presidential candidate fits you best" quiz. My family/ fiance will continue to be disappointed that I am still pretty steadily in Barry's camp, but I thought we all might unite in a chuckle about an oversight in the caricature chosen to represent him:

3. As of the exact second that I write this, all four of my attendants for the wedding have rather enthusiastically accepted. In hindsight, this makes my worried-whining from an earlier post seem trivial, but whatever it's my blog and I'll whine if I want to. In any case, immensely excited is not a strong enough phrase, and I'm really happy to get this time with my best friends.

4. Fiance and I attend a weekly, formal Spanish lesson here. Last week, our teacher schooled us on traditional Christmas Piñatas, and the symbolism behind them. As a former art major, I was fascinated. Did you know that the piñatas were originally stolen from a tradition of the indigenous peoples, and repurposed to incorporate Christianity (okay that's maybe not a big secret)? Specifically, the traditional Mexican piñata has 7 points, and each one is meant to represent one of the 7 deadly sins (FYI: the 7 deadly sins and their symbolism in art has always greatly fascinated me). Breaking the piñata is seen as overcoming your sins. Cool, huh? Unfortunately, it means that the tiny 5 pointed piñatas I purchased as keepsakes a few weeks back are totally un-canon. Or that they decided gluttony and lust are no longer big deals. Waiting on a final ruling from the Vatican for that one.

5. Last week saw a small "heat wave," or at least a few days when I was pretty comfortable in the house with a sweatshirt and a good pair of socks. I knew this streak of pleasant days was over when the dog not only snuggled under the covers this morning, but also curled himself in a ball around the heating pad.

Friday, December 16, 2011

If I Were A Disney Princess

This is not my usual funny-fare. Feel free to skip along to the bottom if that's your thing.

Thank goodness for Yahoo!. Because even in Mexico, you can tell Yahoo! to pretend you're in the US, and therefore its news ticker will continue to inform you of the most important, up to the moment breaking stories.

You know, like who's doing what in the presidential campaign, the world's smallest woman is named, and all about that one time that a dude rode his horse through a grocery store.

Very important stuff. Also important: Disney has unveiled a new princess.

I had some serious ambitions to become a Disney animator back in the day. I studied the Lion King meticulously for how animators captures the way animals move, and for how well the lips actually look like they're making those sounds when they speak. (my first and only college roommate can attest that I drew... far, far too many lions to be not considered a bit... off).

But the older I got, the more realistic I got about my chances of really making animation a career. At the same time, I rationalized letting go of the dream by learning about the politics and eroding quality of Disney's business. While I am a very strong advocate for traditional 2-D, hand-drawn animation (which I fear is an art the next generation will not be privy to), Disney made a horrible play in its relationship with computer animation studio, and story-telling geniuses - Pixar. That partnership was marred by Disney buying Pixar in order to force the creation of more crappy sequels instead of leaving the creative part up to Pixar and Disney handling the marketing. The pursuit and the creation of more original story lines was slowed and not encouraged like it had been previously. Even without needing to find a reason besides my own mediocrity for not being a professional animator, I can say as of that BS move that I wouldn't WANT to work for Disney.

Disney's empire was built not just on beautiful artwork, but on its ability to tell a story. The unfortunate part is that they seemed to get stuck in a rut re-telling tales by the Brothers Grimm. You'd think, with the great successes that they found on the occasions they strayed from conventional Western European folklore - Mulan, Lion King, Aladdin... that instead of making Sleeping Beauty 45, they'd check out what other cultures have to offer more often.

But then... princesses.

I understand the motivation. Disney is, afterall, a business first and foremost, and they have done a fantastic job marketing the "Princess Franchise."

how is ariel standing?

Now, plenty of people have commented on the societal conventions of marketing ideals of beauty and lifestyle to such little, impressionable minds. I won't say I disagree with these criticisms - there is more to life than being perfectly pretty and finding a man who is rich and successful to keep you clad in the most perfect princess poofy gowns.

We as a culture drill beauty and a 'woman's role' into little girls from the second we first call them "princess," dress them solely in pink, or only converse with them about "how pretty they are." It is, to put it lightly, a bummer. But not being a mother, I have little to say on the subject. Others are much more eloquent in these thoughts.

I can tell you, however, that even as a tom boy I wasn't totally immune to dreaming of being a princess. I had a skirt. I called it my twirly-round skirt, and I wore it well past the point of it fitting my five year old waist, even when fastened with safety pins instead of the zipper that it came with. And when I watched my old VHS copies of Disney Movies, I would sing along with the princess parts in all the songs.

My gramps keeps an impressive movie collection, and while I had a wide world of cinematic adventures to watch in that cupboard under the stairs, I watched his copy of Disney's Robinhood until it ceased to play the happy whistle tune that the hamster dance is based upon. In my head, I was totally Maid Marian.

So, now instead of a new Belle or Ariel to aspire to, we've got Sophie the first. Hurrah, now little girls can idolize someone their own age and know that THEY are not as awesome as they SHOULD be already at the age of five instead of waiting and thinking they can achieve princess-dom by age 18. Guess its nice of Disney to rip that bandaid off early for them, eh?

Reading that article from Yahoo!, I started to wonder what I would be like if I WERE a Disney Princess... Walk with me, talk with me.

Well first off, we need another geographical location than England's shire to grab a plot. I've got a bit of Swedish blood, Nordic lands seem good.

Much as I think it would be AWESOME to be a viking... Dreamworks beat me to it.

I spose she's more Norweigan than Swedish anyway.

There is a folk tale from Sweden called "Faithful and Unfaithful," and I think it would make an interesting feature, without conventional "girl meets boy, girl falls in love, girl gets in trouble and is rescued by boy, the end" set up. You can read the real telling here.

But we gotta give this the Disney twist. First, while I think it would be possible to defy traditional "damsel in distress" norms, I acknowledge that there would still have to be a love story to be considered realistically.

Therefore, (seriously, read the story link so you know what the hell I'm talking about), I'd propose that I pull a gender switch, and be Faithful, a plucky young gal who would probably need to be blonde to pass as a cartoon Swede (unfortunate because... I'm not blonde. But go with me here).

What if Faithful (they'd probably go with some different name), as girl, went through with these missions, and slowly the king saw more and more that his queen wife did not love him and was evil and using him for his power?

How long did I spend on this? Way longer than I'm admitting.

By the end of the story, Faithful slays the Queen (who just for good measure, lets make her an evil sorceress too... and Unfaithful can be in cahoots with her as some crazy minion who's maybe not even really a person but an enchanted demon) the king realizes he really loves Faithful, and after she saves him from the queen in the aforementioned epic battle, they ride off into the sunset on the magic talking horse (who would of course, be the comedic sidekick to the tale, much like Mushu, or Baloo, or Flounder, or even the Genie. On that note, you think Louie CK would be his voice? 'Cause that would be amazing. Then I could do press junkets with him and we could be best friends and I would regularly pee my pants from laughing so hard as he undoubtably makes fun of me in the most crass way possible. That's real friendship you know.)

I know what you're thinking - Kp, that's not really the same story then. To that I say BFFFT - please reference your VHS copies of The Hunchback of Notre Dame, Hercules, and The Jungle Book. I win.

So there's my pitch for my rise to fame not as an Artist and Blogger, but as a Disney Princess. I'd send it to Disney, but I spent a awful lot of time dissing their recent decisions t the top of this whole spiel, so I'm betting I already know their answer.

What are your thoughts on the Disney Princess franchise?
And if you were a Disney Character, who would you be
(existing or a new story - I wanna know!)?

Random Section time? Random Section time.

1. WE PICKED A DATE. October 6th, 2012. Wedding planning is ON.

2. In writing this post, I am not ashamed to admit I watched way more Disney Vintage VHS than I should have. Observations from this marathon?
a. Why aren't the huns wearing shirts?! They've got to be freezing.

b. You'd think if Cobra Bubbles had so much previous alien experience, he would have been able to help out the Stitch situation a little better than taking a child away from her only living relative.

c. The fates are the fates because they're all knowing. ALL knowing. They wouldn't have ruined a perfectly good pair of scissors on a string they already knew was not gonna cut.

d. Shere Khan apparently has no vertebrae in his tail.

3. In an effort to break from the Disney movies, I watched Stranger than Fiction yesterday. And I have to say without an ounce of doubt, that to me this is the most swoon-worthy scene in a movie ever. Because it's not some sappy speech that can be repeated by any Joe Schmoe. It's specific to these characters, and well thought out, and situational. It's PERSONALIZED. That's the kind of grand gesture gals are looking for. Gents, take note, if you want to "crap romance," as a good friend of mine would say, this is how to do it.

4. With Fiance working long hours in the last few weeks, I've had a "really great diet." Excepting the last speech bubble, last week Johnny Wander told a true story about my life:

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

A Garfield Kind of Cat

Orange tabbies are wicked common in popular media. Think about it:
...honestly, there's a ton more but I'm wasting too much of my day looking up links for each of those. (That, and now I'm too busy singing along to Billy Joel as a terrier mix on repeat.)

If you've ever shared a space with an orange tabby, I think you can probably agree with me that the reason all these famous kitties are orange - there's something about an orange tabby that is 100% personality. Maybe the bright crayola-crayon coloring messes with the usual aloof, "I hate the world" DNA that most cats have going on, but just like the tabbies listed above, every one of the orange gatos I've ever interacted with not only qualify as serious people-cats, but they are playful and... well I guess the best descriptor is savvy.

Bubba definitely fills this profile, and has yet to meet a person here in Mexico which - even if they're not a cat person - he hasn't won over. I mean, look at that little mug.

Weighing in at 11lbs, Bubba is what any U.S. veterinarian would refer to as a 5. Which is, for the record, the ideal rating on the 1-10 body condition system. I know this, because the last time he saw an American vet, she told me he is a 5. Not that it matters, because next to any Mexican cat, there is only one comparison Bubba ever elicits from our Mexican friends:

He looks like Garfield.
(I must take this second to state that the only good permutation of Garfield in a movie or TV was the original Garfield and Friends animated show. If you need to be told that every other version sucks... well really the only person who could possibly argue that side would be Bill Murray as he swims in his pile of Garfield voice-acting money.)

Yes Garfield: The quintessential orange tabby. But also... you know, the fattest orange tabby. I guess it's not like he knows the difference, but I always feel like they're telling Bub some version of "you should be shopping in the husky section, little boy," as they coo at him while he purrs on the couch. Giving him a little kitty complex, you know?

(just in case you've never heard of Garfield minus Garfield, it's the hilarious and horribly depressing look into the life of Jon Arbuckle.)

Every time Bub's "Garfield" comparison comes up, it's always in two parts. The first:
"Oh, he's so cute, he looks like Garfield!"
and the second:
"Jajaja*, does he like lasagna?"

We certainly don't make lasagna for our cat, but let's be real - if we had some available, he wouldn't be above begging for a taste. It has meat in it after all. In any case, a few weeks back, Fiance and I paused when part two of the comparison came up again, and one of us had the insight to ask if our Mexican friends had ever eaten lasagna themselves. It maybe shouldn't have surprised us as much as it did when the answer came up as no. And it didn't take long to decide, Fiance being half Italian and all, that we should probably be the people to reconcile that.

C&Y were super excited. Or at least C was. He asked that we not just have them over for dinner, but have them over for the cooking part too - because he wanted to learn how to make it.

They were absolutely mesmerized/ possibly disgusted by how much cheese goes into a good lasagna.

It took a bit to put together (because neither Fiance or I have any idea how to gauge just how hot our 4-setting gas-oven is at any given moment.), but everyone seemed to really enjoy it - including E and his fiancee, who joined us just as we were sitting down to eat. E's fiancee is so ridiculously in love with Bubba, it's a wonder she didn't sneak him an entire slice of lasagna under the table.
And after a game a of post-dinner Rummy, we realized it must be getting late if Mac couldn't stay awake to beg for cookies. Thus was lasagna night.

Bring on the random section.

1. Since my previous post, we've procured a small space heater and a heating pad. The space heater is fantastic, and I haven't moved from outside it's 5ft radius in the last few days. It doesn't really help with the "good lord all the toilet seats are as cold as the iceberg that took out Titanic" issue, but I can deal with that. I suppose. As far as the heating pad... well I'm sure it's awesome as well, but I haven't been able to really test that out, since someone else found it the second I left the couch. Note the return of his "if I don't move she'll think I'm sleeping and won't make me move" face... even though this eyes are, yet again, open.

2. Meanwhile everyone's favorite Garfield stunt double has been filling his time inspecting boxes of cookies from the US (thanks K!),
and approving of my latest movie choices (as I was writing this post I totally caved and hooked up the VCR so I could watch all of Cats Don't Dance instead of just the youtube clip I included earlier. It is ridiculous how much I love that cartoon).

He's also made a new friend based on his Texan blood, following a "the bigger the better" mantra. Much to Mac's "I'm super not sure about this inflatable dinosaur" themed dismay.

He just wants to plaaaaaaaaaay.

And lastly, of course, Bub's been perfecting his lazer eyes. So that's been fun.

3. HOLY CRAP WE HAVE A WEDDING DATE. As soon as there is a contract 100% nailed down I will share. Meanwhile, I shall begin work on the save the dates right.... NOW. Stay tuned for that!

4. Mac just walked up to me with cilantro breath. So I guess instead of writing any more in this post, I'm going to GO MOVE WHAT'S LEFT OF MY INDOOR GARDEN.

*jajaja - because the J in Spanish is pronounced like the English H, this is truly the way that Mexicans type a laugh. Like on facebook chat.

Thursday, December 08, 2011

Stubborn Americans.

You know how, when you're cold, some overly-cheery jerk always comes along to be like "oh, when I'm cold, I just imagine myself somewhere really warm and it makes me feel warmer."

Okay first off, HAS THAT EVER REALLY WORKED? Has that ever really, truly, made the feeling in your toes or the tip of your schnozz come back to you?
And secondly, if that magical warm place; with ponies that poop glitter, and Subway Sandwich Stations that still take stamps, and everyone gets a free yacht when they show up? If that place for you happens to be Mexico, you... should rethink your choices.

Actually, let's rewind that thought, because it's not all together fair of me to be all "oh boo-hoo it's so cold here" when less than a month ago I was having a conversation with Fiance about "Hmm, maybe we should consider turning off the Air Conditioning. Nahhh." I know that the majority of my readership is closer to Canada than me, and are therefore y'all are probably reading this while sitting less than 15 feet from a window which is displaying the metric ton of grey frozen slush-snow just outside your home and / or office. I've wanted to write this post for a week or so, but I know if I was reading about a gal with a palm tree in her backyard being cold while sitting in your shoes (or more likely this time of year - boots with da furrrrr), I would either punch my computer screen or you know, unsubscribe.

I can't go having that now.

But listen. Just hear me out. This is more an account of how pitifully smug and stubborn Fiance and I were going into this deal, so it's reasonable to believe I can be kind of funny about it. That's a decent reason to keep going here, right? I mean, what else are you gonna do right now? Answer that e-mail from your boss about the TPS reports? Actually write that term paper? It's not due for another few days, you've got a lot more facebooking and tumbling to do before you bother with finding credible sources. Sheesh. Get your priorities in a row here, yo.

Fiance and I were both born and raised in the midwest. To us, Mexico has always been a sunny vacation spot where you can escape during the winter months. Monterrey is no Cancun, but that's just largely because there isn't a beach. So when we were packing, we made sure to take the stuff we'd need to survive the oppressive HEAT: tank tops, bulk packages of deodorant, and the mini fridge we could keep stocked with soda so cold it's kinda slushy.

When our Mexican friends told us "Oh, it's gets cold here, especially a little higher up in the mountains." We smugly laughed at their silly use of the word "cold." Looking back, I should have maybe learned my lesson previously on this one... like a month ago.

Now, it's not *quite* cold enough to warrant wearing a jacket outside. We're still technically within the realm of sweatshirt outdoor weather. But renting a house here means you rent... you know, just the house. It doesn't come with the things one might expect when renting in the states. Our house came with a front door, and some sinks (oh, and an awesome tub). We had to procure a fridge, a washer and dryer, and more. We still don't have a microwave, and I'm actually kind of getting to a good spot with that. While in the midst of getting what we needed to make this house a home, we did note that it had A/C, but there was no method of heating the house.

A heater? Pfffffft, we need no such thing. We have lived in places where people plugged their cars in at night to keep them warm enough to simply START in the morning. We put tennis balls on those same cars' antennae to make sure the plow knew there was a car under all that snow and not to hit it. I even got a snow day when I was in College - not because there was too much snow, but because on a campus where NOTHING was further than 20 feet from anything else, the administration deemed it too cold outside for people to survive the walk to class. (Somehow we all managed the half a block trek to the bars though. I don't think they'll ever issue another snow day ever.) And now we're in sunny Mexico. The point? Give me a break, we'll never get cold enough here to need a heater.

Welp, it's cold enough. We need a heater. Here's the thing though - we've rather stubbornly committed to this idea of being the smug Americans who are too good for heaters. We don't want to admit defeat. We want to try and tough it out. So instead of being sensible people who purchase a small, but reliable space heater to get them through, here's what the last few days have looked like:

  • Wake up completely underneath the covers. Completely - like, head and face too. From inside my little heat burrito, debate how long I could be considered sane by friends and family, while still staying rolled up like that. Eventually, will remember that the dog will poop in the house if I don't get up. Cursing that whole "being an adult with responsibilities" spiel, get up and put on at least two layers of clothing. I have never been one to entertain the idea of being so fashionably forward as to own a pair of leggings. This will change very, very soon for no other reason than keeping heat next to my body. Also because I'm starting to think I'd be cute in them. I promise I won't ever wear them as pants.
  • Drink at least one pot of coffee. Not that this is so far outside the norm for me, but now it serves double duty in keeping my innards toasty. While I begin filling my daily caffeine intake requirements, Mac and I go back and forth like some kind of messed up ouroboros; him trying to warm his nose by stuffing it under my thigh, and me trying to warm my toes by stuffing them under his belly. We'll play this game until he gets fed up with the dance and goes back to bed. Under the covers, curled in the tiniest ball he can make.

the two most recent pictures of my dog.

  • And then, after cleaning enough of the house to keep me sane, I spend majority of the rest of the day underneath a blanket doing things that do not require me to move from underneath the blanket. This includes working on KpQuePasa (yay more blog posts than you can stand! Oh, and a working FAQ now! wooooo!), sketching, and making a super cool holiday craft that I would like to share a simple tutorial for. Scroll to the bottom of this post for that.

While I tinker with those items, I've started watching a lot of movies. Mexico... probably has copyright laws. I mean, it's likely. But they're not what you'd call enforced. To that effect, there are a lot of places online where you can be all "hmm, I feel like watching something completely for free." And Mexico's internet is all "dude, check this out, I know just what you need" as it opens up it's dirty trench coat to show you bootlegged versions of stuff that's still in theaters. I'd say it's not really that shady, but let's be real, I'm totally supporting piracy at this point. I have pretty good ethics I think, buuuuut I also really like to watch cartoons. Sorry Hollywood, I sold out for Kung Fu Panda 2. (Don't follow my example kids, Uncle Sam will straight up skadoosh you if you try that crap in the states.)

Yesterday, I made the worst mistake ever with the free online movies. I decided to watch Marley and Me.

What kind of asshole (pardon) makes that movie?

For those unfamiliar (come on out from that rock!), Marley and Me is about a yellow lab named Marley and his owner, following their friendship from puppy-hood to... well, until the end of his unconditionally loving doggy days. Let's ask a better question: What kind of asshole watches that movie?

...this kind.

So after peeling myself off the couch and taking a hot shower, again for the heat, but also in this instance, to help clear my sinuses of the absolute snotpocalypse that occured at the end of the "Sad Doggy Movie," I plunked back down under the blanket on the couch. Where Mac and I discussed how, it was settled, he'd just have to be immortal (like Highlander!). Also where I tried and cheer myself up by watching as much stand up comedy as I could find on youtube. (And there's a lot, so that was good.)

I'm a stand up comedy nut. I always have been. In highschool there were Friday nights where I purposely stayed in to watch Friday Night Standup on Comedy Central. Even though they show the same 10 specials every Friday. My favorite commedians are all ridiculously cynical. Maria Bamford, Patton Oswalt (two links, couldn't choose one), Eddie Izzard, and Lewis Black have always made me laugh out loud even if I've heard the bit they're spouting a thousand times. Louis CK is my current favorite - he has honestly made me laugh so hard I peed a little. If you haven't heard his bit on 'everything's amazing and nobody's happy,' click here. (particularly if you work in College Administration, because his take on entitlement is perfect)

B-T-Dubs (for my older readers, that means By The Way), those links are all going to contain a pretty large amount of swears.

Who's your favorite comedian? I'm always happy to check out new sets.

Anyway, after listening to stand-up for more than 4 hours straight, I have come to the conclusion that I could totally be a stand up comic. Which would be a much more intimidating thing to put out there as a factual statement to the world if I was in a location where someone could actually challenge me to try it.

But really; I'm pretty sure, with that one time I went on a first date with a guy that cried TWICE, that time I burned a patch of my hair OFF OF MY HEAD (the google search for "burnt hair" is the blog's number one hit generator aside from the links I put out myself), and just about any time I interacted with a college student at 2am on some random Saturday morning during my time as an administrator, I could put together a decent 10 minute set.

Yep, I could totally do this... after I manage to convince myself to climb out of my blanket burrito and brave the cold, cold Mexican landscape otherwise known as... the living room.

Is this crazy? What would YOU do if you weren't too chicken? And how do you suggest I work up the nerve to actually do this?

Hey look, we've made it to that part of the blog where I deviate from the subject matter at hand and just start typing about random crap. Still taking suggestions on a more friendly sounding title for this section.

I started reading Harry Potter in Spanish. It's something I work on while I sit out n the garage with the SCoSP. (It's warm out there, right next to the dryer) It's a slow read, going through with a highlighter and a red pen for any words I need to look up, but I've managed to get through 20 pages in the last week or so, and I'm understanding it enough to enjoy it. Pretty awesome.
Zombie has convinced some of her friends that I'm not too horrible. And then I snap a photo and all but Z run off like I lit them on fire.

I made zucchini bread the other night. Because zucchini, now that I know how to say it in Spanish (calabacita) seems to be the only squash-like veggie that I can eat without horrific allergic consequences. It's Paula Deen's recipe, so be warned that it's not at all good for you. But it sure does taste good. How do I know that's not just me being proud of myself for baking? Well, Mac sure did seem to think it's delish:
do you SEE that bead of drool my dog has created over a vegetable based product? that may be a new record for him.

That aforementioned tutorial: Pomanders!
While not something specific to Christmas, this is a craft that I only ever remember doing with my mum during the holiday season. It's stupid easy (hence my ability to put together a 'tutorial' on it), and they smell amazing for weeks/months.

Here's what you're going to need:
  • Citrus fruits. (Oranges are traditional, but just because I had them laying around this year, I also tried lemons and limes. All worked well)
  • A bottle of WHOLE cloves, found in the spices section of your grocery store.
  • [not pictured] A sharp stick. (throughout this process I tried a skewer, a thumb tack, a corn on the cob holder, and a toothpick. Toothpicks seemed to work the easiest.)
Step one: poke some holes in your selected fruit, using your sharp stick of choice.
It can be in a pattern, or you can just fill the whole thing up with holes. there is really no wrong way to do this.

Step one ammended: if you have a cut on your thumb, PUT A BANDAID ON IT BEFORE YOU START POKING HOLES IN CITRUS FRUITS, or you will very shortly be horribly aware of the cut on your thumb.

Step two: Push the cloves one by one into the pre-made holes.

Step three: Profit. Or, put them on a nice platter in the middle of your dining room table. Enjoy.

Do you have a craft that seems to always pop up this time of year? Share!