Tuesday, January 31, 2006

Smackdown at the Bass Pro Shop

Bass Pro Shops display in Las Vegas. Tents are on aisle 3. Testosterone on aisle 4. More fun with pictures from the Hog Wild West. I "shot" this little Eeyore near Red Rock Canyon.

Addison Asked - how can I say no?

One of these days I'll get sweet Tag! revenge on Addison. I just haven't found the perfect one yet. In the meantime, Name: Wendy Bust: That’s between me and my Victoria’s Secret Salesgal Waist: see above Hips: made for birthin’ Birthdate: 3/30/63 Birthplace: Newport Beach, CA Ambitions: Get published. Oops, done that. So, I’ve always wanted to bartend. Likes: Sarcasm directed at others. Dislikes: Sarcasm directed at me. If I Had More Time I Would: Take over the world. I tend to assume leadership positions when given enough time. Vacation Destination: Anywhere away from this asbestos-infested house is fine by me. I’ll see it all eventually. It’s what I do.

Mean Girls (stage one)

Here's where it starts, folks. First grade. To celebrate her 7th birthday, Girlie decided to have her shoulder length bob shorn in favor of an earlobe length bob with bangs. Very grown up. She loves it. I love it (of course I would love her head bald - it makes no difference to me) and best of all, no more tangles. No fewer than five long-haired girls at her school told her that they liked her better with long hair. Poor Girlie -- I had to explain that they still like her, they just liked the looks of her long hair better than her short hair. And that's bad enough. "It's not like I'm not the same person," she excaimed when I picked her up from school. Lucky for both of us, she is still awash with self-esteem. "I looked in the mirror and I saw that I look really cute!" In other words, shut up you long-haired meanies.

Monday, January 30, 2006

How often do you think about the war? How often should we?

Is anybody else getting regretably numb when it comes to coverage of the Iraq war? It's the same news day in day out: two killed, forty bombed, some big number injured and sent home but they never say how many, etc. It's awful, gut-wrenching news coming in a slow and steady stream of information. If you don't stop for a moment in your day-to-day life and consider it, however, it's easy to go about your business and not think too much about it. I'm sure lots of people do. Is that how it should be? Whether you are for or against the war, how often should we be reminded that we are in fact a country at war? Should we be asked, for example, to conserve fuel? I find it odd that when challenged, the Bush administration uses terrorism and the war in Iraq to justify activity such as warrantless eavesdropping on Americans. But otherwise the message from the top seems to be "carry on, spend your money, prop up the economy, drive your big cars and leave this war stuff to us." (Okay, that's not a real quote.) It's baffling to me that for the large part, we as Americans are practically invited to forget about this pesky war stuff and just live our lives. Good or bad?

I need a good thriller...

Hubby is gone for a couple of days and I want to rent a good suspenseful movie, just not too gross. End of the world is fine, end of humanity is fine, but I have already seen Deep Impact and 28 Days Later. What's something that's come out in the past year when I haven't been able to make it over to Tampa Theater or Sunrise Cinemas? Thanks.

Saturday, January 28, 2006

Run for your life, Hubby!

Senator Ken Pruitt wrote such a nutsy letter that I didn't say anything about until I read in the newspaper that it's not a hoax (it's so bad I thought Mr. Pruitt had an enemy out to undermine him). It came addressed to my Eagle Scout hubby but he shared with me. For those of you who don't know him, Ken Pruitt is the Chairman of the Rules Committee in the Fla. Senate and the Senate President Designate. So he's not a nobody -- just a nut job. "I want to force them [liberals in Fla. Senate] to go on record as either being FOR or AGAINST the Boy Scouts and the Pledge of Allegiance." "The very worst thing that can happen is for god-honoring, patriotic Florida voters to sit silently on the sidelines while the ACLU, anti-God, left-wing liberals and unelected judges run roughshod over your free speech rights and your right to express your faith in God." Oh, and send me your "best contribution." This last bit gets repeated a lot. Nice to see that the Senate President Designate is against divisiveness. Oh, and hello Ranting Rightie. I figure you'll be stopping by.

Friday, January 27, 2006

I Have a Guest Post on Tampa Book Buzz Today

I got to listen to Stephen King last weekend. Here's what I had to say about it on Tampa Book Buzz.

St. Pete Times asked my opinion

Check out this link. The article was in City Times today.

Wednesday, January 25, 2006

Meet the Teutuls (vroom, vroom)

Chase Squires isn't the only person to have met television celebrities. Check out Girlie posing with the Teutuls of Orange County Chopper fame. Then read my travel article about it at this link. It's called "Hog Wild West."

Yup. Asbestos confirmed.

See below. I'll try to get a picture of the haz mat guys when they come for "containment."

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

Henchman Sex Nuggets

Or how about, Iguana cape jurassic? Obviously I made these up. The subject lines on my spam are actually much more amusing and I would guess that they are computer generated. I hit delete so often I've got finger strain. Can somebody explain to me the economics of this kind of spam? I never read the messages. Who would? Why is it created and how do they profit? Just curious.

Monday, January 23, 2006

Asbestos -- wasn't even on my radar

The "water mitigation" guys are ripping up my wood floors. The only comment I have heard is that it's worse than we thought. Guess what they found? Under the wood in the hallway, there are two layers of vinyl (or something) that has been there since the jurassic period. Naturally they'll have to have it tested for ASBESTOS before they can just rip it up. If you have read my posts lately, you'll know for a fact that of course it will test positive and well, they'll just be going ahead and knocking the whole house down before you know it. Then they'll discover that it was built on an ancient Indian burial site and we'll have to move. And we'll get in a rear-ender on the way and it won't be in my van which is the only thing I own that I actually would like to get rid of. But I digress. My good humor remains intact because I'm hardwired that way. My Hubby? Only time will tell.

Sunday, January 22, 2006

Four Tagged Too

Because I always do as I'm told... four jobs you've had in your life: lawyer, writer, very bad secretary, bookstore clerk four movies you could watch over and over: White Christmas (oh shut up), any Lord of the Rings, The Shining, The Wizard of Oz four places you've lived: Portland (OR), Washington, D.C., London, Tampa four tv shows you love to watch: Lost, 24, The Office, any Law & Order four places you've been on vacation: Poland, France, Africa, St. Lucia four websites you visit daily: Sticks of Fire, Tampa Book Buzz, TampaBLAB, The Mommy Blog four of your favorite foods: Gyros, sushi, anything Thai, everything chocolate four places you'd rather be right now: London, St. Lucia, Roy's (yes, the restaurant), NYC

It's like Christmas all over again

I get a new water heater. Yay me. I'm so proud of the plumbing profession. It only took them three experts and most of a week to figure out that my old water heater was leaking. So I'm getting a new one. And that's not all. I'm getting new wood floors too. Hurray! I love to move all of my furniture to the back of the house for three weeks. And as the icing on the cake, we get to repair the hole in the outside of the house made when the plumbers thought that it was the line to my hose bib that was leaking. Maybe I'll paint the patch red and green. To be fair, I must explain that my old water heater was hidden behind a fake wall under my stairs. Hopefully home builders these days are smarter about where these things are located. It was the eldest of the plumbers who guessed almost immediately that it was our water heater under the stairs causing our problem. I wish he had been the first to arrive.

Saturday, January 21, 2006

Stay off the roads

I warned you all that disaster was imminent last time animals went wild and look what happened, my trip to France was a train wreck and my house flooded. It's happening again with camels (jumping onto highways), whales (sightseeing in London) and cows (taking fertility drugs and having triplets). I'd like to ask the Karma folks in advance if the new disaster could please strike my old minivan that I so long to dispose of in favor of a Prius. Steer clear if you see me coming.

Thanks Bitch

The quiz of the day declares me a dark violet. What are you? Thanks to Bitch/Lab for the link. you are darkviolet#9400D3 Your dominant hues are blue and magenta. You're the one who goes to all the parties but doesn't quite fit in at every one... you know what you want, but are afraid of what the world might think of it. You're a little different and that's okay with them, and if you're smart it's okay with you too. Your saturation level is very high - you are all about getting things done. The world may think you work too hard but you have a lot to show for it, and it keeps you going. You shouldn't be afraid to lead people, because if you're doing it, it'll be done right. Your outlook on life is brighter than most people's. You like the idea of influencing things for the better and find hope in situations where others might give up. You're not exactly a bouncy sunshine but things in your world generally look up. the spacefem.com html color quiz

Get off your computer and come visit me

If you are on your computer between 1:00 and 3:00 today, then you are not at the Gasparilla Childrens' Parade and you have no excuse not to drop by south Tampa Barnes & Noble to say "Howdy." It's on Dale Mabry a block north of Kennedy, far from the traffic jams of Bayshore. See you soon!

Friday, January 20, 2006

They still haven't found the leak...

but this is how I picture it. The next expert is coming tomorrow. Meanwhile, my front door won't open all the way because of the warped floor boards. I'm not feeling too sorry for myself. After all, I took this photo myself in Costa Rica a few months ago. The volcano (Arenal) was exploding. When you get to go to places like this, who cares about a little water damage.

And all this time I thought I was a fruit.

Hee, hee.

Ten Top Trivia Tips about Wendy Boucher!This was fun.

Ten Top Trivia Tips about Wendy Boucher! Wendy Boucher was banned from Finland because of not wearing pants. Wendy Boucher is physically incapable of sticking her tongue out. The pupil of an octopus's eye is shaped like Wendy Boucher. Wendy Boucher does not have toes! The international dialling code for Wendy Boucher is 672! Wendy Boucher is actually a vegetable, not a fruit! Wendy Boucher cannot swim! Wendy Boucheromancy is the art of telling the future with Wendy Boucher! Wendy Boucher is the only one of the original Seven Wonders of the World that still survives. During severe windstorms, Wendy Boucher may sway several feet to either side.

I have Frappred Myself

On my Frappr map, I have pinpointed where I believe my house will float to if the plumber doesn't get here and fix the broken pipe soon. I just found out about Frappr this a.m. If you want, you can put yourself on my map too. It's interactive.

If it weren't for bad luck, I'd have no luck at all

I have bad Karma this year. It's only three weeks into 2006 and I've had all kinds of unexpected and for me, quite unusual, bad luck. I've already posted about my trip to France. Now, as I sit here typing, I'm waiting for the third plumbing expert in two days to come over and tell me why my house is about to float down the street. Leaky pipe is the diagnosis so far. Well, duh. All the wood flooring in the front of my house is warping. Stand in a couple of places and you can hear water squishing between the floor and the slab. Today another guy with supersonic listening devices is going to try and figure out where the leak is located. Superman? Can you hear me? I need you. Over and out, Lois.

Wednesday, January 18, 2006

While everybody is at the Gasparilla Children's Parade...

including my daughter and her Brownie troup, I get to make like a neglected celebrity at South Tampa Barnes & Noble between 1:00 and 3:00 pm this Saturday. It's the one on Dale Mabry just a block north of Kennedy. I'll be signing copies of my book, Parvenue Throws A Party, and just generally being my effervescent self. If anybody in Tampa is not going to the parade, feel free (please, I beg of you) to stop by and say hello.

Tuesday, January 17, 2006

What the French do with bad Girlies

I need more time!

In the most literal sense. My hubby can get by with about four or five hours of sleep. I need eight or I'm comatose all day (even after coffee). Are sleep requirements genetic or is there some sort of training I can get to learn to sleep less and still function? Imagine the things I could accomlish with three or four more hours a day. Hubby would suggest that I spend less time on blogging and stuff but we ALL know that's not gonna happen. I won't give up my time with Girlie and I am simply hardwired to read books all the time. When will I watch the four hours of "24" I've got on Tivo? When will I see even one of the movies that won a Golden Globe? I need more time! Any suggestions?

Saturday, January 14, 2006

And the fish died too.

Think of every travel complication you can and you'll just scrape the surface of my trip to France. I'll boil it down for you. Lost luggage: one (mine of course) days lost: 3 new coats purchased because of lost luggage: 1 (for Girlie b/c hers was in my luggage) number of extra coats needed by Floridians: 0 flights missed: 1 (not our fault) extra night at crappy hotel near Paris airport because of missed flight: 1 rental car dings: not sure how many can actually be pinned on us car sickness episodes: 1 (Girlie) rental cars that takes diesel: 1 number of gas stations in all of France that actually still sell diesel: 1 number of suitcases that fit in a French car: 1 number of times stuck in a private parking garage that we got into by accident: 1 Number of pets that died while we were gone: 1 (Aleeshia the fish) I could go on but why? In spite of everything, we had a blast (except for that car sick part -- yuck). I'll get some photos up on Flickr tomorrow. And if anybody knows where I can get some good French Bread here in Tampa, I'm all ears.

Friday, January 13, 2006

One day late (thanks, Air France) I'm back

I may be too jet lagged to be even remotely funny right now but I couldn't resist checking in. First, for Chase Squires, I must report that the only interesting thing we saw on television was the German version of The Simpsons. Homer was getting an eye exam and as he read the chart, Bart was changing the letters to say, "I8PP." How would the Germans even begin to get that joke? All the French stations seem to play American television shows like Law and Order dubbed in French. For Tommy at Sticks of Fire, the only Florida reference I saw was a beach in Nice called Plage Floridian (the Florida Beach). They wish. All the beaches in Nice have beautiful views but no sand. They are covered with huge rocks the size of my fist and larger. For Rick Gershman at Please Name My Blog, eight days in France and I still don't have any idea what you should name your blog. Sorry. For Lisa at Tampa Book Buzz, I read Truth & Beauty by Ann Patchett and loved it. For Blog-O-Licious, the South of France is beautiful but not quite so beautiful as the Pacific Northwest. For anybody else who occasionally stops by, I'll have more details and photos in the coming days. But look at that, there are FIVE, count them, FIVE people who I know stop by my weblog address occasionally. Ah, it's good to be home.

Tuesday, January 03, 2006

I think the big one is coming.

Don't animals act weird just before earthquakes? If so, somebody is in for a doozy. Chihuahuas are forming wild gangs, cats are dialing 9-1-1, and my dog ate the teddy bear groom ornament off the tree before we took it out on Monday. (The teddy bear bride ornament is now cozied up with the sheep ornament for its long winters nap till next year, but I digress.) I'm sure you're thinking that this is not very scientific and you're wishing I would just shut up and go to France already, but how can I not comment on the streaming news headlines on my computer that are just shouting out "EARTHQUAKE!"

All right you three, here's the deal...

I'm going out of town and I'm not (gasp) taking my computer with me. So the three of you who occasionally read my blog will just have to wait until late next week for the next exciting installment. Perhaps it will be in French. That's right, the Queen of Off Season Travel is taking her family to the south of France for a week: highs in the low 40's, lows in the mid 20's. Brrrrrr.