Thursday, January 28, 2010


This has been an extremely trying day and I'm tired. Tired of hearing about accidents, ice, snow, power outages...winter armageddon. We're pretty busy in the newsroom today. Our publisher brought in tortilla soup at lunch, which has really been the only bright spot of the day.

My car is under a ton of ice, and I doubt I'll be able to get the door open. I think I'm going to have to get a ride home and leave my car stranded. Thank heavens the power is still on. And tomorrow we will come back under even more dire circumstances and do it again. We're supposed to get several inches of snow tonight...on top of the inch of ice covering everything now.

Yah. I just went outside and met with a painful hail of ice BBs on my face and neck. My car is frozen under solid ice. Couldn't even open the door. And now we have to stay and build tomorrow's paper in case the power goes out. Crap. Double Crap.

And then there's this whole transformation thing. Bugger it. Seriously.

Chakras and Rosaries.

Today I am starting my Kundalini studies. I feel pretty good about it. Blending it with Catholicism will be interesting, but doable. Chakras and Rosaries. We'll see how it goes. I have a couple of excellent books my friend Fila recommended to me (thank goodness for internet shopping...southwestern Oklahoma doesn't have a lot of resources.)

The ice storm is already wreaking havoc on the roadways. We are staying in at the paper today, and our publisher is importing lunch.

Your creativity can get you through anything. Just pretend you're somewhere else.

That is my horrorscope for today. I'm already pretty much following through.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Fingers on Fire

I just finished my fourth story and I'm ready to give it a rest. We have a fairly serious ice storm coming in, which wreaks havoc around here, so everyone is preparing for that. Our publisher met with the entire staff this morning and stressed the importance of continuing to get the paper out even if the rest of the world comes to a we will do everything the old fashioned way if we lose power. Should be a good time.

Emily and I were discussing our silliness in the newsroom because it's been the subject of so many of my blogs. This happened after we were heading out to lunch today and I said "I'm gonna go home, make a sandwich, and come back and write about the dead girl." She laughed, I laughed...we agreed it wasn't at all funny but in our profession, like many others that deal with tragedy and bad things on a daily basis, you have a tendency to make a sordid joke out of everything horrible or lose your mind because it hurts so much. Or has the potential to hurt.

The thing about writers is that we are pretty sensitive people. One time I posted on my Facebook "Why are journalists always stereotyped in Hollywood as disheveled, chain smoking, whiskey drinking, truth-obsessed insomniacs? Because we ARE!" It's not an easy occupation. But it is a good one.

So, as professional as we are in our writing and (most of the time, unless we're out drinking together) in public, we are complete crazypeople in the newsroom. We sort of have to be. We write about tough things. We see a lot that we don't write about, because sometimes you have to use restraint in terrible situations. Thankfully, most of what we write is not tragic or disturbing...but there is enough of it on a regular basis to make us the way we are. Tender hearted with hard shells. And senses of humor that most people might consider completely twisted if they were ever privy to our newsroom banter.

We are only human.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Creepy Baby.

It's good this day is almost over. We're all a little over the edge in here. Earlier today Brenda-the-advertising-lady pointed out a creepy little baby doll sitting against the glaringly orange side of the bowling alley across the street. Just sitting there all propped up and looking alone and freaky. I went across the street and took a photo of it.

Then Clinton scooped us on a stupid assault story. It causes a lot of agitation in the newsroom when we get scooped by the Clinton paper. It has an ugly front page, by the way.

Lunchtime came, and Emily and I relieved tension by standing in the parking lot, slapping our asses and whooping. It is considered proper form among journalists to whack the buttocks and yell "Now THAT'S what I'M talking about!!!" as a way of letting off steam. Michael came out and planted a huge puddle of spittle in the middle of my windshield. I turned on the wipers and gagged a little. Then I doused it with windshield cleaner.

When we returned to the newsroom, the creepy baby was mysteriously sitting on top of the file cabinet in the newsroom. It now hangs from the ceiling.

Safina (also in the ad department) came into the newsroom and said she hoped she could make it to the Clinton hospital before having her baby. Brenda (the receptionist) just called and she's still in labor.

Now it's almost time to proof the front and jump...thank heavens. I'm still grumpy.

Star People in my Head.

Try your best to hold onto your sense of reality today -- hard as it may be! Something big has shifted and you might have to adjust your thoughts and feelings in accordance with the new info.

That is my horrorscope for today.
OK, weird enough.
I wonder if I've ever even had a sense of reality. Guess I'll go digging through my head to see if I can find it. My head hurts, however, so I'll have to dig later. I drank too many Coronas last night. I gave into my vices and now I'm off my big, high horse of feeling like my life is completely in order.

But I'll start all over again today. I am angry and frustrated and I don't even know why. Not really. My life is so amazingly good...or at least has a lot of potential right now.

Guess I'll just go put on my aluminum foil hat and sit on my back porch and wait for the star people to tell me what to do. Because right now I don't have a clue.

Monday, January 25, 2010


Things are back to normal in the newsroom. No more tiptoeing around crazy Jules. I decided to drink today so I went and got a 32 ounce diet coke, and as I was on the phone with Stafford Air and Space Museum I noticed a pen fly by. When I looked at the styrofoam cup containing my coke, a small stream of brown was shooting out the side. The pen had poked a hole in my cup.

After that, a blue peanut M&M bounced off my desk. Jeff is hurling insults. The current newsroom topic among our award winning journalists is "farting," followed closely by cannibalism. And after that a subject I can't blog about because my Aunt Betty reads this from time to time, but suffice to say it's a liquid bi-product of sexual activity.

And I have decided to eat my way out of crazytown today. So far: a sausage biscuit (courtesy of Michael), a hamburger and large fries, rice pudding and a box of Girl Scout Samoas (courtesy of my publisher). I shall now morph into a swine. Goodbye size 8.

Eating matches.

“Each of us is born with a box of matches inside us but we can't strike them all by ourselves; just as in the experiment, we need oxygen and a candle to help. In this case, the oxygen, for example, would come from the breath of the person you love; the candle could be any kind of food, music, caress, word, or sound that engenders the explosion that lights one of the matches.”

That is a quote from one of my very favorite books, "Like Water for Chocolate". I've read it five times. It has excellent recipes and I've tried a couple of them.

I got a letter from Zoob. He doesn't hate me. The world can keep turning. I had no idea how much someone else's feelings mattered to me until today...or at least how relieved I could be to know I haven't been tossed under the bus by someone so dear to me.

Yesterday during mass I read something that touched me and has stuck with me since. It said "God loved me into existence"....

I know everything will be fine.

Friday, January 22, 2010

Give me those potatoes or I'll kill you.

Last night our city had its Chamber of Commerce banquet and I swear I ate the best mashed potatoes EVER. The were smashed up with asiago cheese. I almost fought Emily for hers.

It's Friday, and I'm feeling a tad cynical today. My friend Dayna asked me to hang out and drink wine with her tonight after the gym, and I think I will.

Usually when I'm feeling cynical it's because I've been disappointed in some way or another. This time is no different.

Thursday, January 21, 2010


If anyone put a microphone in the newsroom and recorded us, they would think we had a collective personality disorder. That's what happens when you get a bunch of writers together and withhold alcohol for eight to ten hours.

I love the newsroom. We're like a creepy, profoundly disturbed reality show family. We spend all our time together.
At least once per day, Michael (the reporter) lowers the seat of my chair while I'm sitting in it, throws something into my peach tea or iced coffee, and usually tosses his gum onto my keyboard. Today he drew me another cartoon representing my love life. I can't really describe it except to say it involves a guy standing next to a jet airplane and a fellow writer (not from this paper) holding hands with a giant phallus. By the way, this is in NO WAY related to my extracurricular social activities. It's just Michael.

Jeff the sports writer is also an actor. He's done a lot of movies. I've never seen any of them, but I like hearing about them. Michael has seen one. He did a review on it.

Emily is the editor and also one of my dearest friends. I love her because she understands me, and because we make up word "angg angg angg"...which is the sound my cat makes when he tries to chew on her hair. Also, "gyum gyum gyum"...which involves peanut butter (and that's all I'm gonna say about that).

Josh is our youngest writer. He does food stories. We try not to intimidate him too much.

I actually love coming to work every day. That's not a bad thing.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Bill the Cat eyes.

Well the pilot called this morning, and I was actually kind of glad he did. He was really nice about the date cancellation. Very understanding. I liked his colors today.

I've been in a cranky mood for the last few days...I think my lifestyle changes are making me that way. Old habits die hard. I haven't smoked in a really long time, and I don't drink much...(not even soft drinks) and I'm doing healthy things ALL THE TIME. I even make my bed every morning.

So Emily (my editor and also my dear friend) has Bill the Cat eyes today. One of her pupils is tiny, and one is huge. We're trying to figure out what's wrong, and she's pretty sure it's her allergy eye drops (which she only put in the big pupil eye) is to blame. So we did an experiment and put the eye drops in my right eye. So far no change. I'm a little disappointed. I wanted Bill the Cat eyes too.

Monday, January 18, 2010

Ms. Prickles

There is a lot to blog about today but I have a splitting headache so it's gonna be short. I made a decision this weekend. I'm not going to shave my legs when I have an evening bath after the gym. I already shave my legs in the morning.

This is part of my liberation. If I were in a relationship I would shave my legs after gym. But if I don't shave them now no one will be the wiser. It's just five minutes wasted when no one will benefit from it anyway. I don't need silky smooth legs 24/7. Sheesh. I have smooth legs for the daytime. I have NEVER been able to take a bath and NOT shave my legs in the past. It was a compulsive thing...from being married 23 years (10 years and then 13 years) and not wanting to go to bed with prickly legs. I realized I was just being neurotic and they really aren't that prickly anyway.

Now I have five extra minutes to read my self-help books before bedtime. Ha ha ha ha ha!!!!
OK. Enough. I feel a little kooky already.

Friday, January 15, 2010


I bailed on a blind date. I am an ass.

Writer's block.

I'm going to try and cram a blog in while I'm on my lunch break.

And I have writer's block today. I'm supposed to be working on two about Dr. King (today would have been his 81st birthday) and the other about sales tax. My brain does not feel like stringing words together to make coherent sentences today, little alone compose stories.

I did get one big thing out of the way today, however. I e-filed my income taxes and am expecting a refund at the end of the month. I have vowed to sock the money into a savings account (what little there is) in case my car breaks down again. Ah...the life of a poverty stricken writer.

Why am I even doing this blog thing? It seems really narcissistic. It presumes anyone else besides me cares about what goes on inside my ridiculous brain. Maybe it's a writer's version of "you talk to much and say so little it must mean you like the sound of your own voice." Maybe I write so much because I like reading my own words. Sad, really.

Maybe someday I'll write the design book I've been working on for more than 10 years...and actually get it published and make some mulah and get a life. Not that writing for a newspaper isn't getting your words read by lots of people. It's just not the same. Ok, I'm just blabbering now. Blabber blabber blabber.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Honey covered venom day.

Today is one of those days where I don't know whether to be ok with life or go home and crawl under the covers and wait til tomorrow.

The horrific things happening in Haiti make me sad. That is the grand scale. That is the unmanageable scale because there's nothing I can really do to help because I'm broke. I'll have to wait til my next paycheck to send money. Also, I feel very small and powerless in the wake of so much human suffering.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Short and Sweet.

I had lots of news to write about today and I am just about out of words. So instead, I'm going to find a photo and post it.

Here's's my daughter and I at an Obama fundraiser in Dec. 07. C.S. was one of the people doing events for him on the west coast, so we got to go. We are serious about our politics. Really.

Oh...and just so you know. My daughter is actually very beautiful. Here's another pic of just her so you can see that.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Lair Letter Excerpt.

Excerpt from The Lair Letters. Dated January 12, 2007 - exactly three years ago today:

"Hi my girl (Pammy Sue).
Just got off work. Made $96. (The lair letters usually started with how many tips I made that night). I'm finishing the tail end of a bottle of white I started a couple of days ago.

Is there a Betty Ford clinic for Asshole Addiction? (Hmmm. THAT didn't sound quite right).

So I saw the Big Dumb Blonde in Safeway today. I need to start shopping at QFC. I went there to get conditioner and had just been tanning and wearing baggy sweats and a nasty makeup and hair sticking out in 17 directions. You know how you fantasize about running into an ex when you're looking hot, skinny and gloriously happy? This was not that day. He saw me, I saw him...he smirked. SMIRKED!!! Then he texted me about 15 minutes after I left the store and said "Nice seeing you. You look great. Lol. What are you doing tonight?"

I texted him back. IDIOT!!! I said "Thank you. I have lots of plans."

Guess I'll be heading to the ridge tonight."

And on and on this particular letter went about how insane I was for making plans to see him again.

The Big Dumb Blonde and I are still good friends. We talk on Facebook from time to time, and he's engaged now to a woman he met on

OK...back to work. I know I promised lair letter excerpts so thought I would throw that one in, especially since it is exactly three years ago today. I met the alcoholic a couple months later. I really should have checked on the Betty Ford thing.

Monday, January 11, 2010

Friday, January 8, 2010

My Kitchen

Second Sunday brunches start day after tomorrow at my house. It is my attempt to get out of my reclusive winter funk and eat and drink and socialize. I want to spend more time in my kitchen with friends.

Self portrait in mirror.

Wednesday, January 6, 2010