Friday, August 24, 2007

Blacation had to get away

When one has been on blacation or bliatus for over a week, should she feel some sinking pressure to return with a truly entertaining, meaningful, or thought-provoking post--a post well worth waiting for? Or can she just toss a few haphazard tidbits and half-stories into a list and call it a Friday Five?

I think you all know which one I'm going with.

  1. Although I do not always love my job or my office or the lengthier-than-I'd like commute to get there each day, I am reminded rather often just how much I appreciate working in a quaint little downtown, rather than a suburban office park. Not only do I have a lovely view of the tree-lined river bank from my second-story perch behind my desk, but I get to see all sorts of interesting life pass by on the street regularly. For example, one day last week, I saw a small, swarthy man stroll past strumming a guitar. I had no idea we had a town troubadour, but I very much love the idea. Today, I saw two men wheeling a video game machine through the lane of traffic while at least three cars waited patiently or impatiently behind. It was just like George Costanza and the Frogger game, although presumably with less tragic an ending.

  2. My sister called me last night from a bar, wanting to know what it is called when congressmen attach a secondary piece of wholly unrelated legislation onto a sure-to-pass bill as a means of getting that additional thing pushed through. I don't know why she thought I would have this information (I was an English major, not a Political Science major, and unlike Anthony Michael Hall in The Breakfast Club, I did not get a fake ID at 16 so I could vote). I do remember an animated Walter Mondale coaching Lisa and Krusty to get the Springfield Air Traffic resolution passed by paperclipping it to another bill, but I don't remember Mondale telling us just what that's formally called. To my sister, however, I am apparently her own personal Wikipedia, on call at all times to answer whatever random questions she might have. It started with computer- and software-related queries, which made some amount of sense, given my line of work, but when she called me at work recently to ask what time period music scholars assign Bartok to, I knew she was simply expecting too much of me.

  3. All sorts of science and engineering experts are still trying to figure out just why a crucial piece of Twin Cities freeway fell into the river a few weeks ago, and though we have no solid answers yet, they have told us that pigeon dung likely played at least some small part. Yes, you read that right. Poop. From pigeons. Caused (or, partially caused) a bridge to collapse. Good lord; I really don't know what's next.

  4. I have often thought that I need to maintain some sort of database to track which of the frozen meals that I buy for work lunches are reasonably tasty and which ones I never ever want to make the mistake of purchasing again. Since I do not actually create databases, however, and since this is very likely one of those situations where the absolute simplest solution would probably suffice, I really should just keep a list in my purse for reference while shopping. If I ever DO manage to become organized enough to maintain such a list, the Weight Watchers SmartOnes Szechuan Chicken variety is going directly on the Do Not Buy side. This really isn't so much a story (or even a mini-story) as a warning. That was my most disappointing lunch in recent memory. And as an added bummer, I’m still hungry. Boo. Also, Amazon sells frozen meals now?? I am all for the convenience of online shopping, but that is a ridiculous line that I see no need whatsoever to cross. Who are these people who are too busy to buy their frozen meals in stores but not too busy to sit around and wait five days for standard shipping on them and to worry about receiving a temperature-sensitive package from UPS? I am baffled, but that is really nothing new, I suppose.

  5. And finally, I'm reminded today of just how clueless and naive I sometimes still am, because GG sent me a dirty version of a Family Circus cartoon this afternoon, and although I am confident that this alternate version is undoubtedly much funnier than whatever the original version said (Family Circus, remember? Come on…), I still don't understand the punch line. Apparently I haven't seen enough prom* movies in my day. Maybe I should send the cartoon to Poppy. I’m sure she could explain it to me.

    * Codeword courtesy of Metalia.

And with that, I'm out of here for today. Happy weekend, all. Stay away from pigeon poop and mediocre Szechuan food and say hi to your local troubadour for me.


lizgwiz said...

If pigeon poop has the ability to eat through concrete, the world is doomed. And now I can't get out of my mind that the one bridge I cross every day to and from work has more than once been the site of a dead pigeon or two. If the pigeons are seeking payback, I'd better find an alternate route from now on.

Kim said...

Unrelated legislation is called a rider. I was a PoliSci major and I think I remember that from one of the nine days I actually made it to class.

The Other Girl said...

So ... Amazon is actively trying to kill people now? Maybe they should try selling pigeon poop.

Whiskeymarie said...

My sister called me the other day and asked if I wanted her to buy some 70's vintage Star Wars curtains for my husband (geek) for SIXTY DOLLARS.
I asked her if she was drunk.
Odd questions indeed...

-R- said...

I didn't realize you worked in Stars Hollow. That's pretty cool.

Maliavale said...

I think your sister might mean "pork barrel" legislation.

And I wanna see the cartoon! Did I miss the link?

Carolyn said...

I have an earmark for this post. I think that frozen meals available by the mail from Amazon is exactly what's wrong with this country.

nancypearlwannabe said...

Yeah, my sister only ever calls me to ask if she should cut bangs or not, so... at least your sister has faith in your intelligence. :)

L Sass said...

I can't believe you put your sister's query in this post and then left us hanging.

What is it called?

Also, can you please go ride a bike to power the WCCO newscast for me? 'Cause I really wish I was doing that this week. Thanks.

stefanie said...

Liz--That might be best. Except, your alternate route might involve some equally innocuous but deadly scenery. This may be one of those damned-if-you-do, damned-if-you-don't sorts of things.

Kim--Thanks! Wikipedia confirms that you are right. I am sending my sister to you from now on.

TOG--I wasn't going to go so far as to say Amazon is trying to kill us (I did eat a SmartOne meal, after all, even if I didn't buy it from Amazon)... I do have a problem with them grouping those under "Gourmet Foods," however.

WM--Maybe our sisters are friends with each other?

R--It does feel like that some days. Really. We've even got a Taylor Doose in our office.

Malia--I think Kim was right, and it's a Rider, but "Pork Barrel" was one of the suggestions my sister left in the voicemail asking me about this. As for the cartoon, well, I already emailed you about that. :-)

Carolyn--Is that you, Noelle? Or is your mom actually stopping by? (If so, hi, Noelle's mom!) :-) There are a lot of things wrong with this country, but maybe you're on to something by starting with the small things.

NPW--Oh, my sister calls me with those sorts of questions, too. I really think I'm her substitute for Google sometimes.

L Sass--Sorry. See Kim's response. :-) And I am so out of the loop that I had to go to WCCO's site to see what you're talking about. I should really watch the news on occasion.