Monday, September 5, 2011


One day there were three tomatoes walking down the street, a mama tomato, a daddy tomato and a baby tomato. Baby tomato is walking too slowly, so the daddy tomato goes back, steps on him and says 'ketchup!' "


Most of you know the changes that have come about, that will be coming about.
And I feel bad about neglecting you for so long, but I didn't want this blog to just be me whining about how I think I need anti-anxiety meds or a yoga class or to get laid.

So in a nutshell:

  • I'm single for the first time in almost 11 years.
  • I'm still crazy after all these years.
  • Some could say I ended things, but I think that is debatable.
  • 31 is a time, and just like every other break-up I've had (yes, all two of them prior to this one), I have impeccable timing
  • Breakdowns are not fun at all, especially for those of us who claim we don't have tear ducts
  • My friends and family are truly awesome and lovely and amazing (hereby referred to as "besties")
  • He took the Elvis Costello records
  • I received a wee scholarship to grad school!
  • Grad school starts on wednesday and I'm stupid excited for it.
  • I can't believe how much I enjoy the crushing loneliness that is living by myself.
  • Lines are not easily cast/reeled in/caught/kept
  • Thank god for the smooth jazz stylings of Tony Bennett/George Benson/Chuck Mangione
  • Thank god for Neko Case/the New Pornographers/Mates of State and all the other sad bastard music out there
  • The Brewers are in first. Like for-real first. 
  • This past Saturday night was spent with besties, sipping mai-tai's, while I texted my dad smooth jazz puns regarding above artists and the Brewers; I hadn't laughed that hard in a long time.
  • Not that it happens often, but I have absolutely no idea what to do with hit-ons by people I find semi-attractive/line worthy
  • I'm still a super jealous person which is a total first world problem
  • I just learned about first world problems, from a new bestie
  • I collect besties like it's my job, but I have tons of new besties that seriously make me guffaw on a daily basis. Yeah, I just said guffaw
  • This doesn't mean I love the old besties any less.
  • Make new friends, keep the old. One is silver and the other gold.
  • Besties, booze and the brewers (andsomesupergooditwasfunwhileitlastedyouknow) have kept me sane through all of this.

Monday, May 9, 2011

Grad School Groundling

It's a bit behind the times.
I told you I got into grad school right?
Yes. I did. I just checked.

Did I tell you I got a scholarship?!?
I feel a *little* awkward about it as I feel like it's kind of bragging, but I'm also kind of super excited about it.
If memory serves, it was the night I swore off heels (see previous blog post regarding Hobo-Walker), and I was going through the mail before heading out to a friend's house for Bananafest, our semi-regular and oh-so-adult game night.
I still get excited about non-bill mail, and since this was about school I figured it was my registration date or something else that people find utterly mundane but I love.

And there it was "Congratulations. You've been selected to receive the Chancellor's Award For Excellence."
I couldn't, really, believe it as I didn't even APPLY for a scholarship.  But apparently it's an award that the application committee gives out.
And yes, I've looked into it. They don't just give it to everyone (yes, I literally thought that maybe everyone gets a mini-scholarship).
E thinks it may have been my essay I submitted, but I really didn't think it was that great. Was it my reasons statement? Was it just a random selection of newbies?
Most likely, I will never know.
It doesn't affect my financial aid and I think it's pretty cool to quote the Miley Cyrus Show on SNL.

In other grad school news:
I met with my defacto advisor (maybe they were so impressed with my thesis idea/crazy pre-planning and THAT is why they awarded me the scholarship?) and picked my classes.
I will be taking:
Discourse Analysis with the professor who taught my summer linguistics class last summer (and wrote me a recommendation letter!). She actually suggested I take it this past fall, but as I wasn't accepted yet I decided against another "for fun." class.
Intro to Film Studies--Theory and Rhetoric. You are all going to hate me even more than you already do.

Both classes are in the late afternoon and are only one day a week. Work knows and is okay with me leaving early/coming early to get my 40 hours.

The only problem?
I have to wait until FALL to start!
I'm such a nerd.
At least I have my summer reading list to keep up with.

Supes loves academia.

Saturday, May 7, 2011

Read This Now! The Purity Myth by Jessica Valenti

So I've never really, ever, written a book review. And I don't really know how this is going to go.
BUT it just so happens that one of my new favorite websites Bitch Flicks has a reading list over at amazon and since I just can't wait for school to start to get my academic on, I've decided to create a library list of the books!

If you live in Milwaukee, and have a library card, and are (like me) an amnesiac when it comes time to check out books/cds/dvds (what do I get? what was the name of...), the libes has an awesome feature that allows you to build lists! LISTS I SAY!
(Full disclosure; even though I'm a total slob and completely disorganized at all times, I love Love LOVE lists.)
This is incredibly helpful for when, say, you're reading a book review in the paper (it doesn't have to the New York Times Book Review, although it does let me get my pretension on in the comfort of my own home) and you think it sounds right up your alley. You have a myriad of options:
1. Write it down in a notebook you keep of "books to read"
2. Write it down on a piece of paper you will then lose and then find and throw away wondering why you wrote that down.
3. Get on your computer (which most of you have in your phones these days anyway and let's be real, you're not anywhere your phone isn't), login into your acct. and throw it on the list! So super easy!

The lists also enable you request the item if it's not at your local library or you can see where it IS at and seek it out with the help of your friendly (sometimes) librarian.

So while on lunch at work on a particularly lazy/cold day, I decided to create my Bitch Flicks list. They didn't have EVERY book on the list, but I was quite surprised by the amount they did have.

If you can't tell, I love the public library.

So first up on my awesome new feminist reading list (which is not in any particular order) was The Purity Myth by Jessica Valenti. I was super excited to read it as I've read lots about the author in various outlets, she created (or co-created) and she seems pretty cool. AND her name is Jessica!

I loved the book. It made me laugh and got me angry from page to page. While I was one of those kids who grew up in a "no sex until you're married" household, I didn't attend a purity ball (which are federally funded! How awesome is that?!?!). But, I had to work through some major, MAJOR guilt about pre-marital sex. Science facts. (In all fairness, my brother was also held to the same standard as I was and he actually did keep his end of the bargain! Good job, brother!)

It brought back memories of my abstinence only education in jr. high which I thought was great at the time because when I was 13 I was thoroughly convinced that I would be a virgin until I was married. Even though my parents didn't wait, my mom's mom didn't wait, my aunts and uncles didn't wait, no one in the WORLD seemed to wait but I knew that I would, because I was so very pure and smart and NOT SLUTTY.

Some fun facts from my childhood:
Mom, what's a slut?
A slut is someone who has sex before they're married.
(I love my mom, seriously, she is super awesome, and know now that she was just using this as a tactic to ensure that I didn't have sex, but I think this says a lot about our culture)
It was also understood that if I got pregnant while in high school I would be kicked out of the house. Another clever ruse by my mom which was broken when a friend of mine DID get pregnant and had to give the baby up for adoption otherwise her parents would have kicked her out and my mom expressed her disgust at that. When I asked my mom about it she said, "You didn't get pregnant did you?" No I didn't.
I was deathly afraid of getting pregnant because I thought I would get kicked out.


The Sex Respect program is what I was taught in jr. high, and it was awesome (I hope at this point that when I use awesome I mean ridick and totally antiquated). A quick visit to their archaic website and I came up with this gem regarding what will happen if you engage in pre-marital sex:

Premarital sex breaks up couples or pushes them into bad marriages. It fools people into marrying the wrong person. It leads to unhappiness, divorce, extramarital affairs, and dissatisfaction. It denies the couples bonding experience.

I'm not saying that pre-marital sex doesn't do this for some people. I'm sure there has to be some basis for this, somewhere no matter how archaic the research on the website is (the mid-80s).

And there is some awesome anti-choice rhetoric on there too, obs, because controlling women's bodies is actually what the virgin thing is about.

I wish I still had the book here so I could quote it, but alas it had to go back to the library. Any further posts in reference to awesome books I will retain so I can share accordingly. And of course the book is full of amazing quotes from abstinence only educators and law-makers who only think religious virgins who were brutally raped should be allowed abortions. Oh if only I were making that up:

BILL NAPOLI: A real-life description to me would be a rape victim, brutally raped, savaged. The girl was a virgin. She was religious. She planned on saving her virginity until she was married. She was brutalized and raped, sodomized as bad as you can possibly make it, and is impregnated. I mean, that girl could be so messed up, physically and psychologically, that carrying that child could very well threaten her life.

And that, unfortunately, is the reason that Ms. Valenti had to write this book and why we need to read it. Because if you're not a virgin, and you get brutally raped/sodomized, it doesn't really count, cos you're already damaged goods.

Saturday, April 16, 2011


Not to fret, friends. This isn't a post about everyone's favorite pig-faced governor, this is just about a girl trying to walk in some heels after a night of hcd.

The week/month of concerts/dance parties began on Wednesday night when my bestie, PO and I ventured to see Ra Ra Riot at the Turner Hall. The sound isn't the greatest there, but it's so super old and it's filled with pictures of old Germans, so I kind of HAVE to like it.

Anys. We get there fashionably late, because we're super-fashionable/hot messes all of the time. The first opening band was okay. Nothing too super-special. Just kind of folk-rocky. I see a co-worker who states he may be in attendance on Mad Planet Friday for another co-worker's bday. PO states that one of her co-workers will also be in attendance. Quickly, what was supposed to be a weekend of utter laziness and not going out has turned into a weekend of the yuge.

The concert is not crowded at all and the people watching/judging is in full force.
Hipsters are a tiny, tiny breed.
Our attentions quickly turn to the group of three that is directly ahead of us.
Upon first look we thought it was just a good-time gay with his two lady friends, which made me miss my ventures with J&P.
But the more I eavesdropped, the more I got the feeling that this guy was a het. When one's gaydar is off I always ask myself WWJ/PS?
Would would James/Peter say? And the more I watched, I could hear their running commentary in my head and I was convinced that he was, indeed, a het.
I seemed to have figure this out just in time, as Blondie was ALL OVER his mother-loving self. It was clear to both PO and I that while he was possibly into Blondie, he seemed to have a better connection with Brunette. And for a while, every time Blondie would be all sexy and dancey up on him, he would politely dance out of it and include Brunette, which I thought was nice.

Unfortunately more Pabst was involved and following scene occurred at least three times:
Blondie all swervey and dancey and kissy on him.
He would kiss her back, dance out of it and side up to Brunette.
Rinse and repeat.
Rinse and repeat.

On the one hand, I felt sorry for Brunette because I think she probably did like Plaidy McCurly Hair (he looked kind of like the male teacher on Glee), and I think he liked her. It was just that Blondie was way more aggressive in her drunkenness, and what's the guy going to do? Outrightly refuse the hot blonde who is all over him when his true feelings are for the still-cute-but-not-hot Brunette who isn't all over him whilst drunk?
Come on.
A dude's got needs.
I think they'll work it out in the end.

It should be noted that the above is all conjecture based on eavesdropping and reading body language.
I never said I wasn't judgmental.

Plaidy McCurly Hair left to get more Pabst (of course!) and to take a breather from his reign as Mayor of Makeout City, and a NEW group of three moved to the head of the line.

This time, a dude with two blondes. Luckily for my sanity, this group had a much more platonic feel rather than a thwarted-crush-stealer feel, but still very VERY flirty.

Who knew hipster rock shows were the breeding grounds for threesomes?

The show itself was a good, dancey time.
Sideboard: I don't think I've used the made-up word "dancey" so often. But yet.

It just feels so right.

Another side note:
What if I, homeless Barbie, created a fashion blog?
You too can look homeless, even at work! I actually think it could work.
So don't steal it.

Friday, I'm in love.
Not literally, but there was a super foxy, beardy guy at Mad Planet in a red and blue plaid shirt who was all awkwardly dancing. Adorbs.
Bonus? PO and I both agreed on his foxiness. This happens rarely.
Sadly, he found some tiny little black-haired lady to dance all sexy with.
Boo-hiss on mahnjays.
Other than that, Mad Planet was a ridick good time.
I had a stranger tell me they really liked my hair in the ladies bathroom.
I had a crazy-person-of-friend tell me I was gorgeous twice (I think because she forgot the first time?)
I had another person tell me they liked my shoes (tortuous devices that they are).

They played good music, I created a new non-dance called the Angry Feminist:
Stand with arms crossed, looking mad, eyes slightly slit, occasionally shaking your head back and forth. If outside, smoke a cigarette.
This works exceptionally well if they're playing "Smack My Bitch Up," fyi.

But oh.
To quote EC:
My dogs be barkin'.
Like a genius/boss, it seemed like a wise/fashionably viable thing to wear heels.
They are my COMFY heels, you know.
By the end of the night I had created not only my new wicked dance move, the Angry Feminist, but also a new walk, The Hobo.
Not only am I Jj Walker-Burch, I'm Jj Hobo-Walker-Burch.
And since it's cold/rainy/snowy there was no way I could have removed the tools of torture after leaving the bar. And so I hobbled/shuffled, like an ancient Japanese woman with bound feet, around pond-sized puddles, muddy lawns and cracks in the sidewalk.

And I KNOW heels are bad for you.
I KNOW that I shouldn't wear them.
Lawd knows I have enough height that I don't HAVE to wear them.
But they're so cute.
And I really love how tall they make me.
If they made flats half as cute as heels, this wouldn't be an issue.
And let's be real.
It's not like I buy them.
Prizes for work events, given to me by other drag-queen-sized-feet-friends, or I DID buy them but it was like 15 years ago.
Instead, I will put my effort into procuring a virtual rainbow of Chuck Taylors Low-Top Allstars.
Because you can wear those with anything.

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Good Times, Great Oldies

I'm still amazed that people read this thing, and that when I don't post for a while people want to know why. So. Here is my April resolution:

I will try to post more. FOR REAL.

But let's get down to business.
Guess who got into grad school?!?!?!
That's right, this awesome lady.
Sure it's on a probationary status, but with my undergrad GPA, I wasn't expecting anything less. I meet with my advisor on Thursday to discuss my potential classes for next semester:
*Discourse Analysis (the professor of this class taught my summer class and thought I would enjoy this class, and I actually think it would help with my wannabe thesis and my love of arguing altogether)
*Rhetoric, Writing and Information Technology--it sounds super dull and boring but it's online and I feel like it would probably be beneficial
*Film Studies, Intro to Film Theory and Criticism--I would love this class and if I eventually want to teach at the college level I feel like I would need an in-depth background
*Introduction to the Modern--I've taken this professor before, and I enjoyed it, and I think this is a requirement, so I'm assuming I could take it next year or something
*Feminist Rhetorical Theory--obs.

Or maybe there are some other gems that I'm totally missing? I'll keep you posted.

Still waiting on the financial aid (read: loans) to be awarded, but hopefully I'll get enough to cover the cost of tuition. I'm hoping to keep working full-time with a more flex-y schedule, but am unsure if that is a definite (fingers crossed!)

In other news.
I had visions of grandeur that by the time I posted this the Crew would be showing their stuff, first in the division, maybe leading in some other arbitrary statistic.

Instead, they look like the same old Brewers. And I don't mean the Brewers of '08 (although I don't think they showed up until the all-star break), I mean the Brewers that have some good pieces on paper, but can't seem to pull it together on the field.
That the team we're playing has a BETTER team on paper and they're pulling it together.
That the team has a worse team on paper but they're on a crazy-red-hot-streak.


The West Bend Silver Lining?
They're hitting. They've still got the long-ball, and they're getting on base.
They seem(ed) (especially in the first and second games, today's game is effing torture) to have some good cohesion. The lot of them have longer hair (I don't know if this is intentional or not, but I'm trying to find the silver lining here)
They seemed to have good chemistry on the field (barring this game).
They're only three games outta first
I'm really hoping the Home Opener puts a little spark in them and we can pull out a win or that this is just a bump in our road to victory.

Saturday, February 26, 2011

Why I'm An Angry Bird (Military Ladies edition)

While I'm still plenty angry about the whole Scott Walker fiasco, I am ALSO angry at the fact that because I'm a woman, my fundamental right to choose what to do with my body are being infringed upon.

So we're on the way back from picking up our new foster dog and like the super classy liberals that we are we have NPR on. And apparently a couple days ago they did a story on women fighting in the front lines. I immediately quipped "Well considering they don't trust women to make any type of decision regarding their reproductive health, I can't imagine this is going to bode well."

Surprise, surprise:
I was right.
As I was doing a lot talking OVER the radio (yes I realize interruption is a horrible habit and one that I don't see myself giving up any time soon so apologies to all of my friends when I interrupt with a movie/song quote or some other type of amusing anecdote/anecdon't), I didn't hear one comment that was read in support of women engaging in ground combat. You can read/listen to the original article here.

The article discusses the possible overturning of the barring of women engaging in direct ground combat. While I have many issues with the military, the issues it brought up for upholding the ban harken back to the 1800s. When women were considered genteel and delicate:

Late last year, a panel of active-duty women and veterans testified before the commission. During that exchange, retired Marine Lt. Gen. Frank Petersen expressed his concerns about getting rid of the ban.
"Here is my problem," Peterson said. "We're talking about ground combat, nose-to-nose with the bad guys, living in the mud, eating what's on your back, no hygiene and no TV. How many of you have seen how infantrymen, the ground troopers, live, and how many of you would volunteer to live like that?" (taken directly from the NPR article linked to above).
Minus the ground combat and nose-to-nose with bad guys, this kind of sounds like camping. Clearly that is huge jump and I'm not trying to indicate that being in a combative unit of the army is like camping, but the fact that hygiene and tv come into play?! Does anyone join the military thinking they're going to stay caught up on their favorite shows and get to shower whenever they want? To me this is assuming that women only care about how they look and following their stories. 
Fortunately, "Tammy Duckworth was an Apache helicopter pilot in Iraq and lost both of her legs in combat. Now she's the No. 2 at the Department of Veterans Affairs. She replied immediately: 'I've lived like that. I've lived out there with the guys, and I would do it. It's about the job.'" (taken directly from the article).
I'm sure there are plenty of people (men AND women) out there who couldn't live in a combat zone, myself included. Which is why I didn't sign up for military (okay and a slew of other reasons). I like my bed, I like my dog, I like pizza and booze. But to make this specifically about women, who are often put in this position anyway (why they're revisiting the issue), when there are just as many lazy men wouldn't thrive in this position.
According to the article, the question isn't whether or not they CAN do this work, it's whether they SHOULD be doing this work. So because someone has a vaj and tits that means they SHOULDN'T be allowed to fight in ground combat, even if they WANT to.
Pregnancy was brought up in this article and in the follow-up heard today whilst driving. What if the woman get pregnant and can't be deployed? Can't this be treated like any other job? You get maternity leave, you report when your maternity is up? Right? Millions of non-military women do this everyday. I didn't say it would be easy or fun, but it's an option.
During the follow-up, some people predicted women would intentionally get pregnant to avoid deployment. Thanks. It's good to know that you distrust the women in our military as much as you distrust just plain ol' everyday janes. And again, this could happen. But couldn't a man also do something to keep from getting deployed? This street goes both ways, but clearly only women are super untrustworthy. Even though they are willing to die. For your country.
And then there's privacy.
How can we trust grown adults to undress in front of each other? How can we trust them to carry out bodily functions in front of one another? Does the military realize that there are co-ed bathrooms and showers at various colleges throughout the country? So we can trust military personnel to carry guns and maneuver tanks but we can't entrust them to catch a glimpse of nip or peen without being thrown into a tizzy. Of course. THAT makes perfect sense.
And the last one that is brought up is my favorite:
Unit Cohesion: Does having a woman around create distractions? (taken directly from original article).  Does the military have that little faith/trust in their male personnel that they expect them to turn into every man depicted in "Who Framed Roger Rabbit" when seeing Jessica Rabbit? Slobbering, wimpering messes with hearts in their eyes? Or is this insinuating that women are constantly using their feminine wiles to woo men and distract them from their jobs. Ladies are just too slutty in their fatigues.
And yeah, there is a huge issue of sexual assault/harrasment in the military. According to the ACLU Blog of Rights, One in three women are victims of sexual assault while in the service. The VA finds the condition so prevalent that it has it's own name MST or Military Sexual Trauma. I don't think this is going to get better while we continue to demean able-bodied and willing women who want to serve in all aspects of the military.
If this segregation continues then women will continue to be looked at as second class citizens. Because if the US Military Complex thinks that women can't do all the things men can, then why shouldn't the men within that complex feel the same way? Or the US population in general?

Friday, February 25, 2011

Why I'm An Angry Bird (Scott Walker edition)

I begin with a quote from Tavis Smiley, as stated on "Real Time with Bill Maher on 2.18.11:
"These budgets are moral documents. And when we see what you put on the table, we know then what you really believe."

It turns out, that while I don't think of myself as political at all, my friends have told me that, yes I am a political person. And this blog is gonna get all political up in your shit. True!

And Governor Walker has been upsetting me (and tens of thousands of other individuals across the state AND the nation). And I've been wanting to blog about it for awhile, but was out of town, getting cold sores from the stress of it all, and I was generally getting my agitation out by just discussing with my friends.

But it doesn't seem to be letting up. Paul Krugman keeps writing about Wisconsin, We're figuring heavily into "Real Time" with Bill Maher. We're regular fixtures on the Daily Show and The Colbert Report.

And since I'm a bit of an attention whore, I like it.
But then I remember WHY we're getting the attention.
Because our governor is bat-shit crazy. Yes. I realize he's an elected official. And that 53% of Wisconsin voted for him. BUT. I have a slight feeling that if he would've been TRULY honest (not "honest" as he states he was) in his campaign, if he would have come right out and said:
"The only TRUE way to fix the budget crisis here is to bust all the unions," my guess is that maybe not so many people would have voted for him. Just a guess here, I'm no political theorist. I'm just a person who was laid-off once and decided to start a blog about my adventures in the poor-house, which due to me being born in the wrong social class, are most likely to continue on for the rest of my days.

And I'm not gonna lie. I'm a total liberal.
I have no bones about labeling myself that.
I'm not one of those who says "I'm X-leaning" or "I don't vote for the party, I vote for the person," although my paternal grandma always said that one. Even though I think she voted republican 99% of the time, but she's adorable and could do whatever she wanted. Personally I think it's because her dad was a union president and probably PROBABLY (I have no basis for this fact, this is pure conjecture) voted democrat her entire life. But like I said, I never asked her about it, so that is a pure guess.

But as her father (my great-grandfather that I never met) WAS a union president, I feel it would be remiss to NOT talk about what's happening in my state. That I love.

Supposedly, Scott Walker ran on a platform of fiscal responsibility. He demanded that the public sector unions pay into their pensions at a rate of about 5.8% (compared to their previous 1%) and pay more for their healthcare, I believe at a rate of 12.6% (compared to their previous 6%).

Honestly, I think there are better ways for the state to get out of it's deficit (raise the sales tax) or here is a fun visual a friend of a friend posted on facebook:

My Wisconsin teachers taught me to show my work:            |
|                                                                                     |
| Deficit = $137 million                                                       |
| WI Adult Population (2009) = 4,342,866                           |
| (5,654,774 total population times 76.8% adults)                 |
|                                                                                     |
$137,000,000 divided by 4,342,866 = $32                  |
|                                                                                     |

While I'm sure there are some people/adults who couldn't afford to pay this I know there are people (like myself, my friends, those who commented on this statistic via facebook) who would be willing to pay a double or triple share. And let's be real. I'm not flush with cash. I live paycheck to paycheck and receive no support from my parents. But I would gladly do this to enable the teachers  (THE TEACHERS--THOSE WHO TEACH YOUR KIDS [yep your kids, cos I don't have any]!!!) to keep their "great" benefits and measly pay. Not to mention their collective bargaining rights.

Here is a fun twist:
While Fox News originally reported that 61% of those polled were FOR ending collective bargaining, it quickly corrected itself by saying that it actually had the figures flip-flopped (are you freaking kidding me?!?!) and that 61% actually OPPOSED ending collective bargaining rights. This can be seen here in the always funny Colbert Report. While I realize people make mistakes, this seems a little too ridick, even for my tastes.

I'm just a little mad over this.
Mad that my brother, my cousins, my old teachers might get paid even shittier than they would have if this bill passes. I've heard their (and other state workers, like prison guards) will received a $200-$600 cut PER MONTH. That is a mortgage payment for some.

Mad that this bill would make cuts to a $1 billion cut to health care programs that serve the disabled, elderly, and low-income residents currently served through Badger Care, the state’s Medicaid program.
Mad that this bill would undermine all that the unions have done. I like the fact that I get days off, get benefits, and get to work in proper working conditions. This didn't happen because bosses thought the workers deserved more or better. It happened because the workers organized, formed unions and demanded it.

Mad that the unions have AGREED to increase their contributions to their pensions and benefits (the part that is actually about the budget) and STILL Governor Walker won't take out the collective bargaining language that's in the bill.

Mad that I feel this bill is going to pass, barring some Christmas Day miracle that gives three republican senators hearts.

Mad that the president has said very little about this situation as this is CLEARLY a political issue rather than a fiscal one.

But I hate to end this on such a downer (because I don't see these blogs getting any more cheery), I have to say that I'm so very proud of Wisconsin coming together, protesting peacefully, getting us much needed national attention, getting the message out that this ISN'T about just the budget, this is political high-jinks, in full force. 

So thanks to all my awesome friends who keep posting great links and articles, thanks to the public service workers who are protesting non-stop, thanks to all of the supporters who aren't public workers (Ian's Pizza in Madison has received donations from all over the country and other countries, including Egypt!), thanks to Bill Maher, Jon Stewart, Stephen Colbert, Rachel Maddow (and all of their writers!) for bringing and keeping this issue in the spotlight of American politics, thanks to Paul Krugman for bringing his always super-smart analysis to this issue. 

Mad love to all of you.

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Keeping it Weird in Austin (but not really)

First of all, I would like to welcome myself to the 21st century as this is my VERY FIRST blog post written from an airport. THIS IS LIVE PEOPLE.

My journey to Austin barely happened. As Milwaukee received the Storm of the Century/Snowpocalypse/Snowmageddon, all sorts of flights were moved and bumped. And seeing as I have to fly standby, my chances for getting on weren't looking good as the plane was full of pilots and other (read: paying) standby people.

But HARK! One seat left and it was all mine! ALL MINE!
Of course, I had to sit in the middle and that wasn't the most fun as I had a ginger who kept adjusting his junk next to me (seriously? that is SICK! to quote Angus Anderson) and on my right was an olds who was playing ridick games on his super-fancy ipad. I was slightly enthused to see this guy playing games as I fully expected him to be checking his stock portfolio. But alas, weird sports games and weird music coming from that thing.

On my flight to Denver I took in the fifth installment of Harry Potter and tried not to think about the ginger constantly adjusting his junk. So SICK!

Whilst at the Denver airport I caught up on some emails, drank a couple cocktails and met (and talked with!) a Christian Steelers fan who alerted me that the terrible towel proceeds to the the Pittsburgh Children's hospital. He also told me that his favorite player (whose name escapes me, because seriously? I don't know anyone on the Steelers aside from the accused rapist.) But this guy always liked Player X because he did the sign of the cross when something good happened, then as it turned out, on one of the team flights, while all the players were playing poker or sexually assaulting flight attendants (okay I totally make that part up) Player X was just sitting there reading his Bible. After my Steelers buddy left it turns out I was sitting next to a gay.
A SOUTHERN gay English professor. This is my life. I actually had a hard time understanding him (and various other people on my journey) as his accent was quite thick.
Texas=Taxes in my head.
But he was supes nice, let me use his lighter and referred to his interior designer husband as such, which I love.
He, too, assured me that I would get into grad school, which I found oddly reassuring even though I could have been a coke-head making up stories.

My flight from Denver to Austin was amazing. I got to sit in the emergency area which means lots of leg room AND the flight was fairly empty which mean no one was next to me!
Knitting abounded.
Much to my dismay, I had realized I bought the wrong size yarn, and was/am unable to keep knitting until I remedy this issue.

As a side note three birds just swooped by me.
Inside the airport.
And then some stickies chased it off.
Because that is appropriate behavior for a child & animal interaction.

Austin was cold, dark and damp upon my arrival.
The next day was declared a snow day.
I'm not lying.
There was a dusting of snow on areas that didn't get sunlight.
I couldn't stop giggling at all the reference to the "cold" and the "snow day"
DO YOU!?!?!
See above for storm of the century/snowpocalypse/snowmageddon

My time in Austin was spent hanging at local eateries/pubs which were quite similar to the caliber in Milwaukee, but more expensive, and not as friendly. But I went to see EGL for his b-day and his party was a good time indeed: a private karaoke room was rented where I, once again, halted the good times by singing "Thunder Road."
I like being a crazy person.

And their new roomate had a dog! So I was very happy about that, as you know how much I love dogs.

On Saturday, after working out my impending travel plans, we played Trivial Pursuit on the capital lawn which was lovely as it was warm out (!!! do you even know how long it's been since I've seen sun?!? I didn't even have to have a coat on!!!) We then patronized a pizzeria where consumed cocktails, sat under the heat lamps and had many arguments/discussions over fun rape/forcible rape, David Letterman/Joaquin Phoenix/Crispin Glover, abortions, Brokeback Mountain and Dennis Quaid. Good times.

The evening was cut short by the fact that we had to wake up dreadfully early (330!) as my flight out of San Antonio left at 625. And San Antonio was about 1.5 hours away from Austin.

Monday, January 17, 2011

Kelly's and Katies and Lee's, Oh My

We knew this weekend was going to be awkward.
And in prototypical fashion, it didn't disappoint.

Let's start at the very beginning.
A very good place to start.

In the playoffs.
Night game.
Looking back the game foreshadowed our evening quite nicely.

PO,  via fb had sprung Kelly's Bleachers on me.
I didn't know if that was a reality, or one of our gold bikini with snakes type of comments.
It turned out PO's sister, KM had a wee birthday celebration and really, really wanted PO to stop by.
As it's fairly close to where I live. I obliged.
It'd be good to have a drink with a bunch of Packer fans and see KM, whom I haven't seen probably since last year this time.

And it's insane. I have never been to Kelly's Bleachers, but it was a little bit out of control. TV cameras were there recording the insanity that is a Packers playoff game in Wisconsin.

We finally find them after wading thru a sea of out dated Packer jerseys and turtlenecks, long hair on dudes and PO's born-again, yet trashed manager.

KM is happy to see us and we see one of our St. Patty's Day's besties and we reminisce about texting to land lines. It's fun time. You should try it.

We stay for a drink or two and then head to the house party that we/I had committed to.

The house party had a Robert Goulet theme and was at an old friend's house whom I hadn't seen in years. We knew no one else there besides the host and had decided early on that we would only stay for a drink or two. It's slightly awkward as we're literally standing in the living room drinking and talking about people that no one knows.

Fortunately the house party was close to everyone's favorite lounge (and by everyone I mean PO's and mine), Lee's.

Lee's is refreshingly empty and we get our fave seats at the bar.
The yuge.
And then a group of olds comes in.
And inevitably settles next to me.
As I've had about 3-4 drinks I'm in the talkative state.
So I'm not feeling SUPER judgmental.
And the guy seems nice enough. He's happy about the Packer win.
We start talking sports and he tells me that I'm pretty, but "not in a line kind of way. Just in a conversational way" (is there even a difference?)
He tell me I have big cheekbones, which I'm assuming is a back-handed compliment as PO agrees with him.
I then make a comment about people who watch Fox News.
Because I'm that way.
And of course he tells me he watches Fox News and that he's a republican.
I politely tell him we should probably stop talking is no good can come of this.
And of course, OF COURSE, he refuses to let it go.
He tells me how when we FIRST started talking I was kind of snarky and snippy, which I found to be hysterical, because I so WASN'T being snarky and snotty. I thought I was being nice.
But now he thinks I'm so "intelligent and pretty" and how he really thinks we can talk about politics without getting nasty.
Guess how this ended.
It wasn't bad enough that we were basically on opposite political spectrums, but that all throughout our conversation he kept just telling me how nice and pretty I was as if that were enough to change to my mind about politics. Because if there is one thing I love, it's being infantalized during an adult conversations.
And yes. I realize that having a political discussion in a bar is a bad idea.
I tried to stop it. I tried to put an end to it.
I love to argue.
I do. ESPECIALLY when I know I can win. And I knew that I could win.
And while I didn't change anyone's mind, I made the superior points.

PO, bored out of her mind, had gone outside to have a smoke.
Upon coming back in the conversation had turned to the deficit.
And olds was asking me what I thought we should do about the debt that we're facing.
And before I could say anything, PO asks him about the two wars that caused all of this deficit.
And olds didn't like that.
At all.
He called PO "vile and stupid" which was completely out of line.
I should clarify that this guy knew (not like it matters, apparently) that I had a partner, that I owned a house with said partner.
Not to mention he was old.
He backed off and his friends, for the rest of the night, apologized profusely for his behavior.
Which got kind of annoying. Because it was over.
The guy was a jack-ass, and for the most part knew he was to leave me alone for the rest of the night.

And in all honesty, if I would have known that it was going to last as long as it did, I wouldn't have even started talking to him/being my unusually nice self.
I will stick to sarcastic Jj from now on.
Consider this a lesson learned.

The rest of the night was actually quite lovely.
Minus apologies and brain talk.
The barkeeps got pleasantly tipsy and giggly and chest-bangy.
Our music played on the juke box, we sang loudly and proudly.
My "Thunder Road" brought down the house.
Well at least the air piano.
Kind of.

Saturday, January 15, 2011

My WhizBang Start to 2011

Cold sores!
Homeless Hipsters!

All super awesome things that have happened in 2011,

Nightmares: Have been plaguing me lately, and I'm not one of those nightmare kind of people. (What are "nightmare kind of people" you ask? not me.)I can't remember having them as a child, but now as an adult and in 2011 I've awoken screaming. It seems to have subsided for now and I'm back to dreaming about alive and dead friends alike. I will take ghostly dead friends versus dementors and killer-fathers any day.

Cold Sores: You know what is awesome? When your nightmares stress you out to the point where you get three cold sores on your lower lip. Then, when those go away another one pops up on your upper lip. DO YOU LOVE IT?!?!? I love it. Thanks to my gayest of cousins, JT, a huge dose of lysine supplements seemed to do the trick.

Flu: Sober puking < drunk puking. I haven't had a stomach flu in about five years. But this one put the kaibash on a night out at LLL, made me only half-heartedly enjoy the Packer game (Football Stuff!). The plus side? Thank god for DVR. Jon Stewart + Paul Rudd = flu boners.
Feel free to spread flu boners around. You know you want to.

Homeless Hipsters: To be a young, foolish child again. Except I was. On New Years Day. After an amazing party at J&E's, the next morning brought a coffee klatsch in the kitchen complete with pizza for breakfast, the Rose Bowl Parade on the telly and then some MeTV videos. It was about the time when the MeTV videos started that PO and I realized we may not have thought our getting-home all the way through. Like a grown-up (or like a boss?) I thought it was Friday. In actuality it was Saturday. Which means EC was not available to pick us up. Various thoughts were submitted for review; all of these thoughts required cash which we would have to procure from a tyme machine which would require us walking around the east side in our jammies/slippers/no jacket/boston store bag of wine, blanket, fancy clothes, David Bowie picture) and PO in her fancy clothes carrying a comforter and pillow. And it was cold. Like what's-cooler-than-being-cool-ice-cold, cold. After an especially cold cigarette PO made the wisest decision of the year (literally) and called our barely legal friend JG to see if she could get us.
And. She could. Cue shameful hallelujah chorus by 28 & 30-year-old.

The good news?
I know how to knit!
I have a laptop!
I have travel plans in my future!
I get weekends off!