Thursday, July 29, 2010

Scary Underwear Women

Okay, so I was packing up my mom's b-day gift yesterday and this thought sprang into my brain that just won't let go...

I feel like I've posted about grandma underwear before...have I? Maybe I just thought really hard about it. Especially as my mom has officially gotten used to my procuring her unmentionables for her as birthday/xmas/mom's day gifts. Seriously, this is what she asks for, and I think it's because she's tired of trying to find out which obscure corner of the department store have they shoved the old lady accouterments. Seriously, it took me longer to find the display case than to pick out the merchandise! And if you're stuck with the same job as me? Ask where they keep the girdles. No, not the spanx, the girdles. Your goal will be within a 5 foot radius of the most horrific of the bunch.

And that got me thinking about my underpants. I already know I've become an old lady with regards to my bras. I own one "modern" thing that can stand up on its own. I feel like I'm wearing a bullet-proof vest when I don it. Seriously? I don't mind the lift of the modern day push-ups, but do I have to become a triple-D to achieve it? So instead I scour the internets looking for (and mostly failing at) finding the perfect over-the-shoulder-boulder-holder.

Where was I? Right. For as long as I've remembered/been sentient/aware of my mom...which would be a few years older than I am now... she has worn granny underwear. When I grew out of the girls' section/selection she led me over to my "choices" which included a few packs of her favorite, um, grammie whities, but was okay with getting me things that still had bows and a little lace, as long as they were WHITE. Okay, light blue was fine too.

When I visit now? She is aghast at the colors and styles of my cotton bottoms. Mostly because they are NOT WHITE and maybe a little loud in the colors/patterns (VS cotton, if you really must know). I know there is a huge age gap between well as a bit of culture shock. I know also that 40 is the new 25 or whatever, and that cougars can be sexy and all that noise...but, um...if I don't have the sexy bodies that Jessica Parker/Courtney Cox/Demi Moore are sporting when I'm their ages will I have to turn in my Victoria's Secret for Underscore? And when will they switch? Sally Field is making osteoporosis commercials...but somehow I just can't picture her modeling the brands I just wrapped up for my mom, you know?

Hence the title of the post...are we (and maybe it's just the royal we, here) headed down the road of being, ahem, mature women who wear underthings that might just scare the bejeebus out of the younger generations? Seriously, I hope not to be that old lady trying to get my wrinkled body into a pair of briefs I have no business wearing...but when will the granny pants start calling out to me?

Sunday, July 25, 2010

The Blueberries might Have Been on Sale Yesterday

I knew if I did one more pictureless post, I'd start losing readers...seeing as I'm down to 4 regulars, that would be tragic, as 25% is a HUGE figure. So I made the grand sacrifice and tried to figure out iPhoto, just for you.

Blueberry Scones!
But if anyone is interested in the needs a bit of tweaking.
(More on this after my iPhoto rant.)
The last time I veered away from Photoshop, was to learn enough iPhoto to walk a friend through so he could find where the original files were that was back when I still used my G3, I'm guessing 5 years have passed since then.

A lot has changed in iPhoto since then, and I think the only aspect about it that I find highly useful, as I still can't figure out how to upload pictures to Facebook, is that it has a "post to facebook" button. Aside from that? I am not pleased.

iPhoto does not trust you. It happily lets you import your photos like it always has, but if you happen to want to use, say, blogger to upload your picture from your computer? GOOD LUCK finding where it has scurried away your picture. That folder where you copied the original files to? Empty. Going to your hardrive and clicking along to the iPhoto folder to find the docs like I did five years ago? No dice. Using the obscure (but highly useful when you only have a trackpad) double-finger tap to get to the right-click mouse features and FORCE it to show you the original file? And THEN having to figure out how to make a copy and stick it back on your desktop? Not the most intuitive thing.

Were I just a mac-nubie? I'd have never known where to go or what to do, yes, there is both an "email" button as well as a "post to flikr" button, so there are alternatives, and I even know why they made this change...too many of those aforementioned newbies who might move or change the names of the original photo files and then wonder why iPhoto can't see them. But even knowing this still has me a bit pissy about the whole thing.

I need to apologize to a friend of mine who shared the awesomeness of AppleCare and their ability to walk him through how to move his photo files onto an external drive so that he could still have access to them on a different drive. I was all, "Really? You needed their help for that?!?" Now I know better. The way they have protected us from ourselves? If my life, job, access to the pictures of their baby from birth, depended on it? I would be useless in trying to help them, and that bothers me to no end.

Big fail, Apple. I'm glad I own a copy of Photoshop, no matter how ancient it is, I'd rather have complete access to my original files and suffer the consequences of my own stupidity, thanks.

Okay, rant over... That was more long-winded than I thought it would be.

These are pretty easy to make, but as I said, I need to tweak the recipe a little as the original calls for 3/4 cup of buttermilk, but it's not real buttermilk...or maybe it's the liquid that you gather after doing something fancy with cream and other ingredients to make a glaze or something.

See, as the friend who gave me the recipe did not use the glaze? And she is a super awesome cook who doesn't really rely on measurements but on look and feel? And owns a food processor? She only passed on the actual scone recipe, wherein if you use the 3/4 C of buttermilk? You don't have enough liquid for the 2 cups of flour, 3 Ts of sugar, 1 T of baking powder, 1 tsp baking soda 3/4 tsp kosher salt 3/4 stick of butter that you pastry knife into the above until it looks like coarse meal, to become the "batter" that you can "spoon" from the bowl onto the baking sheet, especially not after adding 1 1/2 cups of washed AND dried blueberries. (The recipe said to "fold them" in after adding the liquid, but um, yeah, I dont' follow directions and I hate breaking blueberries as I try to get them to "fold" into batter. Much easier to add the liquid last. )

I further tweaked the recipe by adding a teaspoon or three of poppy seeds (let them soak in the butter milk as you mash away at the butter).

So I grabbed handfuls of the stuff and kinda patted them together and stuck them on the baking sheet. Then, instead of buttermilk, I used my regular 2% to "coat" the tops (I wet the tips of my fingers and more like massaged the milk into the crumbly dry things to try to keep them from falling to pieces on the baking sheet) and sprinkled brown sugar on top instead of more white sugar.

Bake for 17-ish minutes at 400 degrees, cool on a wire rack if you own one.

Friday, July 23, 2010

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

I Get It...Sort Of

I think FaceBook is making me ponder humanity and their actions too much.

It's not a wonder I look in once in a blue moon to stalk people and post the ridiculousnesses of my life (which I then expand upon here. Seriously? I'm a blogger more than a FB/Twitterer, like I'm an emailer more than a texter. Is it only me who equates these things with the drugs of the 80s? I'd be the stoner over a tweeker. Not just because of the munchies and inactivity involved versus the energy and activity that the other side of the coin is connected with...but maybe the brownies and the intense need to make food (I did attend the University of CA at Santa Cruz, after did those people feed me well.))

Where was I?

Right, pondering my navel.

I was friended by another HS acquaintance recently and I started to wonder what all had become of their group. I always felt like I was at the periphery, only there because my best friend from high school had struck up a friendship...with this particular girl, actually. The one time I found myself near her, post-high school (and slumming the Berkeley area with the group of odd-fellows I'd befriended and my wonderful roomie (dude, how did you even put up with me?!?), it was awkward, to say the least, to be around one another sans my bff from hs. I do believe that was the very last time I had any contact with her. And she seemed so...well...normal, no longer the crazy red-head from high school.

Fast forward 17 years (I KNOW!) as I think about my baby brother starting his first college-level-esque classes (he's doing what used to be known as summer bridge, now known as "XL" at Pasadena City College (!)), combined with a comment I heard from that same bunch of girls with regards to one of their number deciding to attend, as a last-minute switch, a tiny college in the South vs the huge UC where her group of friends were going. The gist was that they were ready to be the weird fish going into the big ocean to meld with/find more of their kind and stop being seen as weird, where as she was going where she would stand out, on purpose.

To me, who was going to a tiny little UC so I could get away from everyone, this seemed an unfair judgement. Were they thinking the same about me?

To me now, with my baby bro choosing PCC over any other Community College in the area (it's LA, there are loads), I get it. He's picked a school close to home, yes, but also far enough away from his current neighborhood that maybe, just maybe, he'll find the pond has turned into a lake instead. Maybe, just maybe, he'll see just how he fits into the puzzle of society, without, you know, having to go 370 miles away like his big sister had to.

Saturday, July 17, 2010


Yep, still here...had a bit of a rough time the last um, almost 2 weeks (really? July 5th?!?). Not that I made any out loud promises, but I had been trying to post more regularly to keep the emails asking about my demise at a minimum. Seeing as I'm about as bad at responding to emails recently as I am picking up the telephone. You'd think I'd become a hermit. And sometimes I wish it was that and not the fact that I've been spending 46 or so hours a week at work...

But that has officially changed! Or so my supervisor keeps telling me. We've finally filled the empty position in our group. No more doing my job AND someone else's...well, sort of. Now my day is filled with rushing through my work and training (and maybe retraining) the new person. And then trying to finish up my stuff before 7PM every night! I can understand why a desk manual would be super useful right now. Alas my company is known for "oral history" style of training. And shoot-from-the-hip style fix 'ems. These worked back in the day when there were only 100 or so people, but they're almost 10x bigger now, and things are simply no longer that simple. As such, one of our tasks is to have created our manuals by the end of it boggles my mind that the person I'm training isn't writing anything down...Yes, I did tell her about the desk manual. Yep, told her nothing was currently written down for their position...umm hmm, did say we were each responsible for creating our own parts as no one has the same job description in our group.

And as the blog as my witness, I am not going to worry about it anymore, promise. Not my job. Besides, I need to worry about my own desk manual.

So, aside from the above, I feel like a million and one things have occurred that I'm in no way going to be able to cover, so as is usual for me, I'll just randomly update as the pictures get uploaded...which is part of the bloggy problem.

I am lacking in resources just now. Sort of. See, I'm writing this from a new-to-me lappy. It's a 3+ yr old macbook my father procured for me from the ones my old high school/his current employer was selling off as they are from the graduating seniors and are too damaged to be given to the incoming frosh. Superficially damaged that is. Mine is missing a chunk from one corner.

How have I lived without a laptop for so long?!? It is the bomb to lie here with it resting on my lap/legs and type this out for you. However, I haven't actually merged what's on my mini onto the pictures, no bookmarks, no links to explain my goings and doings...not for lack of trying, more for lack of organization. See, remember the whole carpet-being-replaced dealy? So even though my mini's cpu, keyboard, and mouse are within proximity of one another, they have yet to be connected. There are boxes and boxes of things that are of a bigger priority for me to get back in order in order to REACH the computer. Which, I'll have you know, was uploaded with pictures and notes and maybe a funny story or two, prior to being disconnected. I thought it was only going to be for a couple days, you see.

Then I got the lappy...which is, again, the total awesome. I can surf the web and fulfill my morning need to find out just how bad things are in the world (pretty bad, don't look, it's not worth it), and therefore kill the need to connect up my slooooooow mini even more.

Except for the pictures and bookmarks and such, that is. Minor details, I know. But like I said, now that I have my bloglines and blogger bookmarked, I'm one step closer to having no excuse to regale you with tales and updates and maybe a rant or seven. I do try to keep those to a minimum, but I think Andy is hoping I blog more and rant less the way I blog about my knitting and make him look at my stitch definition, less. You know?

And it's late, and I've promised I'd help finish getting the living room in order tomorrow, so more later...much more, promise.

Monday, July 05, 2010

Why the Cap'n Slices his Apples...and other Things...

So I went into Williams Sonoma yesterday...okay, more descriptively: Slowly semi-limping and trying to clear my head as my back spasmed AGAIN, I stumbled into Williams-Sonoma looking for an overpriced, but all-metal apple-slicer.

'member how I said my back didn't seem hurt after all the moving of big furniture that happened for the carpet? Right, scratch that. My back being sore is not the big issue, it's the cramping-spasms that have lately thrown themselves into the mix. NOT HAPPY.

But what was sneakily worse was that they didn't start until after I'd ventured out into the gloominess of Seattle and ordered my clam chowder lunch...see, for the second time in a row, I seem to be sick on 4th of July. And a piping hot sourdough bowl of clam chowder sounded so yummy. And it was.

What, you ask, hot chowder on the 4th of July? Are you mental? If the weather were even half decent? (It actually rained yesterday, hard rain, real rain.) I would have agreed. But hot cocoa in front of a roaring fire-place fire sounded like a better plan than being out in the stormy day waiting for dark. And I'da totally felt kinda super pissy about crawling into bed and forgetting about the world a little later that afternoon... But um, yeah, hurty back, scratchy throat, and rain? I'd rather watch vampire/werewolf episodes on Hulu.

But the apple slicer hunt...was a total bust.

To answer Bezzie's question and make me not look like too much of a princess? I pre-slice my apples for my lunch. I know, I am not a browncoat and no one is going to hide an explosive device in my Fujis. But barring say, cherries and blueberries, I pretty much slice all my fruit before eating. Yes, even strawberries if they are um, suspect enough. I think this goes back to growing up on the fruits that came out of my dad's backyard. I know this must be the case because I'm getting all heebie jeebie about it... Let's just say there is NOTHING like biting into a peach that someone else has already laid claim to... Remember that scene in Labyrinth? Yeah, that one? With the peach? Urgh...lived it, thanks.

But I never used an apple slicer until a few years ago. I think I was first introduced to one at one of the temp jobs I had in Seattle. I had no idea how easy/one step such an instrument could be! And you can use it on pears just as easily! But $10 for one at the fancy kitchen tools store? Dream on, I was temping after all! Every penny counted back then. So I got the $2 plastic one from IKEA. With the number of apples I consume in a year? I should have invested on the more expensive one. Because now? Looking for the all-metal one that Williams-Sonoma used to sell for around $15? Total fail. They've changed it up to be a plastic-handled one that "dials" the size of your slices and costs over $20. Really? I can go back to wielding a knife while preparing my lunch, thanks.

Oh and just in case anyone says, but dude, how often will you find a rotten piece of fruit/infested thing when you bite it? With my luck? The last time I bit into a whole apple was last year, the morning of a friend's b-day party as we were snacking before getting the enchiladas started. Of all the apples I could have gotten? Right, mine was a rotten-core one. Just a coincidence? I don't care. Life is short, and I eat a whole lot of apples.

Thursday, July 01, 2010

Thumbs are WAY More Useful than You'd Think...

I have learned my IKEA lesson. I promise. No more $2 apple slicers, no matter how red and happy they look.

I broke mine this morning and messed up the tip of my left thumb some kind of bad. Have you any idea how hard it is to slice that little bit of apple seed area off with only 9 digits? Yeah, I still had the prehensile movement going for me, but as my left thumb was happiest up and away from any more sharp things? It was more of a battle than it need be.

Thankfully I am right handed. Otherwise I would not be here typing this, what with the spacebar and thumb connection. I knew it was too good to be true that I didn't throw out my back with all the recent furniture moving...urgh.