Tuesday, March 29, 2005

Funny Farm

So I'm doing a little bit of research to find out how many points I'll get for this speeding ticket (if I'm found guilty; I plead not guilty and asked for my day in court) and I came across the FAQ Farm site.

Lots of unanswered questions out there, including:

What are some short-term effects of alcoholism?

How effective was blitzkrieg?

What materials are used to make a baseball?

Is there a list of medal winners from the Vietnam War era?

Can cell phones cause headaches?

How do you make your cat roll over?

How long after you sign papers for buying a used car do you have to change your mind?

Can you have two different insurance companies on two different cars that you own?

Why did Franklin Delano Roosevelt allow Pearl Harbor to be attacked?

What types of individuals would be considered at risk for prostate cancer?

How much should a teenager charge to walk dogs?

What jobs other than teaching can you get with a teaching degree?

Why would guppies be swimming at the top of the tank and not anywhere else?

Will you burn fat if you exercise before you eat breakfast?

Can you get B-12 in vegetables or fruits?

Is there any exercise to get rid of excess hip fat?

What should you expect when having your tubes tied?

What are squats?

What is the difference between LCD televisions and DLP TVs?

Who had the highest batting average in 2004?

What is the statute of limitations for unpaid traffic tickets?

How can an American living in the UK on a work visa purchase a house?

How do you install a downstairs toilet?

What causes nausea while working out hard?

When should you take your pool cover off for the summer?

Is it the EU's goal to form a one world government?

Can a parent legally kick a teenager out and give up guardianship and custody?

Why did the American Civil War last so long?

If you have the answers to any of these questions, hop on over to the FAQ Farm and weigh in.

Friday, March 25, 2005

Run, Trucklet, Run!

My darling Trucklet had a check-up on Wednesday. She got new oil and new windshield wipers and her tires rotated and air pressure checked and so on. This morning I filled her up with gas and whispered in her ear "Go, baby - run home to mom and dad." And off she went.

She was so happy to be free and on the road. I popped in my Jack Johnson CD and soon we were cruising on the back road. Just up ahead, Trucklet spied some bigger trucks and, having been stuck in the driveway with an elderly, sedate Town & Country van for most of the winter, she was so excited that she sped up a little to catch up with the Big Boys. She didn't want to pass them, she just wanted to cruise along behind.

We were winding our way along the road, when all of a sudden the truck in front of us slowed down and pulled over to the shoulder. He didn't stop or really even apply his brakes, and I thought he was just pulling over to answer his cell phone. Then he pulled back into traffic and I happened to glance up to the rear view mirror.


The sheriff was right behind me, lights a blazing. I pulled over, turned down the stereo and waited to see if the deputy was cute. When SHE approached my window to ask for my driver's license, registration and insurance, I knew I was in trouble. She said I'd been doing 69 in a 55 (hey, at least I settled into a sexy speed ...) and without further ado, went back and wrote me up a ticket.


Thursday, March 24, 2005

3 - 13

Catching up on my Pepsi bottle cap scorecard. A loser yesterday and another one today.

Started deleting mail in my in-box, and I'm going to try to keep things down to one screen's worth. Never did double check those figures for administration back in September; probably won't get around to doing it now. Never did get back to Nina about helping her with her herb festival web site; probably won't get around to doing it now.

Probably should start hauling out my personal effects piece by piece so it won't be overwhelming and noticeable when I do vacate the premises. It's amazing the crap you accumulate ... the memo holder, the Hallmark card organizer box, the desk lamp, the jar candle, the mini cd/radio boom box, the artificial flower arrangement, the plants ... all personal touches that make your office space comfy.

I'd stock up on office supplies, but I already have a full box of pens, tape, rulers, 100 meg zip disks (that I'm not sure I can even read anymore - the zip drive in my laptop only accepts 250 meg disks, I think - and now even the zip disks are obsolete - all I need is my trusty $25 memory stick), paper clips and staples at home.

Suddenly, I am exhausted. Change - sucks the life out of you. Or maybe it was that cardio kickboxing class last night. Kicked my ass, that's for sure. I suppose I should get used to it - my goal is to get in shape and run a 5K by early June. Wish me luck.

P.S. for John: You've been on my mind. Will email you separately to see if there is some way we can connect when you are up this way on April 18.

I Think Not

Spring? I don't think so.

Six inches of wet, heavy snow last night. Me, I wake up with a hormone headache. Really didn't want to walk to work this morning, but I'll be damned if I'm going to tackle the two foot wall of snow at the end of the driveway.

Phil had his girlfriend sleep over last night. If he couldn't get up and shovel a path for her when she left at 6:30 this morning, then I'll be damned if I go out there and shovel a path for his use later.

And while I'm grumbling ... His daughter slept over last night because Phil's wife had an early morning meeting. I don't have any problem with that, but why did he feel compelled to have the girlfriend come over and sleep with him last night as well? Especially since he'd spent the night at her place on Tuesday. Just irritating the hell out of me.

Wednesday, March 23, 2005

Ivy League

Un. Frickin. Believable.

So here I am, getting fired from this podunk state school. Yesterday, I get a call. From an Ivy League institution. Inviting me to have an informal discussion about some upcoming openings.

I have an interview next Monday.

Tuesday, March 22, 2005

I'm Taking Bets

After playing hookey from work yesterday ("no, really, Mr. HR Director, I was so sick [and tired of all the bullshit] I couldn't come to work") I'm back at my desk. I think I'm going to call my Dad and shoot the breeze. And Brian - we need to do another audiopost sometime.

But first - what are the odds I'll pick a winning Pepsi when I go out for lunch today? I'm taking any and all bets. And there is no sure thing - after all, Syracuse and Kansas both got taken down in first round play. (But did you see the high school sophomore from Minnesota? He shoots, he scores - from his backside on the floor!)

Saturday, March 19, 2005

My iPod Is Smarter Than I Am

Here I was, printing out my library of 800 some odd song titles and comparing it to the 3,500 or so songs that Phil loaded onto the iPod for me when he gave it to me. Laboriously comparing and contrasting. Finally, I just copied and dragged, thinking "I'll remove the dups later."

Funny thing - the iPod skipped over the songs already installed! Now I just need to edit the titles and synch up between the iPod and my hard drive. Good way to fill a Saturday evening, don't you think?

Friday, March 18, 2005

Post Office Props

I finally got that package from Amazon.com yesterday.

Of course, this was after I had emailed the USPS on Wednesday, basically saying, "where the hell is my package?" I'm still not thrilled about the length of time it took to get to me, but I am pleased with the official response to my inquiry, received earlier today:

Recently you requested personal assistance from the United States
Postal Service. Please see below for our response.

Thank you for allowing us to be of service to you.

I placed an order with Amazon.com on March 6. My package was shipped from NJ on March 7. It's been sitting somewhere in Brooklyn since March 8. Any chance you can find my package?

Discussion Thread
Response (Joy Emerson) - 03/18/2005 12:06 PM

Thank you for visiting our web site regarding information on the item 9102 ABCD 118S 6188 0000 45. The item was delivered at 8:18 am on March 17, 2005 in YOUR CITY. I regret the length of time it took for your item to arrive.

Parcel Post mail has an operating standard of two to nine postal business days, but is not guaranteed. Delivery confirmation information includes information about the date and time of delivery or attempted delivery will be displayed. It may (but is not required to) include the date and time of when item was picked up or accepted for shipment. It does not include tracking of the package enroute.

If I can be of assistance to you in the future, please don't hesitate to contact me. Thank you for using the United States Postal Service.


3 - 11

I'm on a roll.

I Heart Susan

Susan just shared with me an essay she wrote for a contest to win four days in New York City including spa treatments and shopping sprees. Whether or not we win, it warms my heart to know that this is how she describes our friendship:

My Girlfriends Invitation™ Essay

You know the saying "Too Much Information"? Well, that doesn't exist between Kenna (left) and me (Susan, right). We have a no-holds-barred, do-it-all, say-anything kind of friendship. We are each other's litmus test, weathervane, and conscience. We can bounce ideas off one another that we might not be willing to share with anyone else-ideas about career, family, our social lives, and especially men. Nothing that one says or does shocks or disconcerts the other. We're there for one another no matter what, fearlessly and unconditionally, through the good, the bad, and the mundane.

Both divorced, we've discovered the true value of girlfriendship that neither of us enjoyed during our marriages. Perhaps it is only when you find yourself on your own that you appreciate a friendship that endures and that comes without conditions or expectations, a friendship in which you can let down your guard and truly be yourself. We've helped each other through some hard times and have enjoyed some really great times, too. When something exciting or significant happens to one of us, the other is usually the first person she calls or-since this is the 21st century-e-mails.

This is not the most flattering photo, but it clearly depicts the spirit of our friendship: bright-eyed, big-smiled, and on the move, barely stopping long enough to grab a camera and snap a self-portrait before moving on to the next adventure. There was a man in the photo (what was his name?), but he has been cropped out. Turns out he wasn't right for either of us. Perhaps one day we'll each meet our Mr. Right, but until then-and beyond-we've got each other.

Excuse me while I go dab my eyes and wipe my nose ...

Thursday, March 17, 2005


Yippee! Today I picked a winner!!

Now, what songs shall I get? I don't want to go to the trouble of searching for these caps and then forget to redeem them.

Tuesday, March 15, 2005

You Think?

This morning in our staff meeting, I mentioned how it would have been nice if there had been a general announcement about the fact that the president's secretary was retiring before an ad for her position was published in the newspaper. Shortly after the meeting my boss came in and said that they were going to be advertising for my position, so did I want him to tell my co-workers before the ad appeared?

Uh, yeah. And while you're at it, why don't you tell them the truth about why I am leaving? I'm not going to give him an easy out. I'm leaving because he didn't find my work satisfactory. Period. New paragraph. End of discussion. Thank you all for your attention.

Monday, March 14, 2005

Wake Up, Brooklyn!

Why the hell is my package from Amazon.com still sitting in Brooklyn?

"Your item arrived at a shipping partner facility at 1:48 am on March 08, 2005 in BROOKLYN, NY 11220. Information, if available, is updated every evening. Please check again later."

Friday, March 11, 2005


Ladies and gentlemen, we have a winner! I'm so happy I think I'll finish off the rest of those Girl Scout cookies.

The Winter of My Discontent

It's snowing again. Big, fat, fluffy flakes. If it were December or January or even February I might be enthused. But it's March. March 11 to be exact, and I'm sick of winter.

And so are a lot of other folks. At least, they are using the phrase. Got a chuckle out of Suz Redfearn's 2002 column. Was saddened by Annie's thoughts from 1999. Rachel has a whole blog dedicated to pregnancy using the phrase as her title. There is some artwork which represents the feeling in a dark and somewhat disturbing way. But my favorite comes from Jane Catoe:

"Thank fucking God, I'm not in Boston ... where I spent my very own winter of discontent. Which is where I learned the hard way, by not doing it, to cut my losses and move on. Which is where I learned that not every situation can be improved. Which is where I learned that it's a bad omen if you move to a city and get cussed out the first five minutes you're there. "

Thursday, March 10, 2005

She's BaaaaAAccK!

The Mary Kay Lady is back.

She wants to join this women's group I belong to, and I can't tell her that we don't want any of her kind in our clique because we're supposed to be an open and welcoming group of business and professional women. She attended our dinner meeting last night as a guest, even though originally she had told me she coudn't come because her sister had died unexpectedly over the weekend and she would be out of town with her grieving mother. And the Pink Lady was so impressed with the educational program in which I played a small role that she sent me this message this morning:

"Goodmorning Kenna! I wanted to tell you too that you are an excellent speaker! Your presentation about the College and the conection with the Women's Group was articulate, authentic and very well put! You're so talented! I know there are great things ahead for YOU!

I feel very fortunate to have met you and appreciate the extra time and interest you've taken in introducing me to the Women's Group.

Make it a miracle-filled and exceptional day!

Pink Lady

PS: Great pant suit too! You're so classy!"


Wednesday, March 09, 2005

Ripped From The Headlines

I really enjoy "Law & Order" - the original and all the spin-offs. The last few years I've gotten pretty lackadaisical about watching new episodes. I have the VCR set to tape every Wednesday, but I don't worry too much about whether or not I watch each new episode.

I have the television on now, tuned into L & O, and this week's storyline parallels the recent story of a judge who was threatened by a racist extremist. I'm really struck by the timing. What was it, just last week that that judge's husband and mother were murdered in Chicago?

The other noteworthy aspect of this is that Candice Bergen is playing the judge, and this isn't the first episode of L & O she's been on. Good addition to the cast, and I like that she's not a regular. It's fun to wonder when she'll show up next.


I'm trying to see it as a good thing. If I'm having such horrible luck here, then I'm bound to have good luck in other aspects of my life, right? Not that it's been a total loss - I posted a plea on the Company's electronic bulletin board, and earlier today an iPod-less person took pity on me and gave me his winning cap.

And here's a question - why does it cost more for less? The other day when I hit the vending machine, regular Diet Pepsi was sold out so I thought I'd opt for the caffeine free Diet Pepsi instead. But, no! Caffeine free Diet Pepsi costs $1.25 instead of $1.00. Can you believe it? Just like those low-carb menu items at chain restaurants - they charge more for less. I remember being at Friday's with some friends last summer and the bunless burger cost more than the regular burger. Uh, it's the same damn burger. So order the one with the bun and don't eat it already.

Americans. Paying more for less, the new national past-time.


It's in the single digits here today, and with the wind chill it is at or below zero. Days like this make me seriously reconsider my stated desire to stay in this area ... why don't I just pick a warmer location and do my job search there?

Tuesday, March 08, 2005


Can you believe it? I can't pick a winning bottle cap to save my life.

And to top it off, it's snowing here in upstate New York. We're supposed to get six inches (or more) by the time all is said and done. Guess who will be shoveling all that snow? Me. The unemployed boy next door is off to Florida to visit his folks and Phil, well, we'll see who ends up doing the lion's share of shoveling tonight.

P.S. Happy 40th Birthday to my dear Ex! I know you opened the e-cards I sent you because I asked for return receipt. We'll see how long it takes you to acknowledge my thoughfulness, if you ever do. And you know what? I don't even care if you forget my birthday. (For the rest of you, it's May 9 so write it down!)

Monday, March 07, 2005

6 Tiny Cookies = 450 Calories

Curses on Girl Scouts everywhere!

Sunday, March 06, 2005

Fast Car

I don't know what it is about this song ... it always gets to me. For some unknown reason, it's playing on the radio right now. In some strange way, it's a day brightener for me. Maybe because I'm considering a similar future for myself - just getting in the car and driving, driving away from all my worries and problems.


Can you believe it?

Went to see "Million Dollar Baby" with Susan last night and while we were waiting for a table at the restaurant, we wandered to the drugstore next door where I purchased a 20 oz bottle of Diet Pepsi. Once again, I picked a loser. The odds are 1 in 3 that you'll win - I've now lost six in a row. Don't even bother asking how I did in Friday night's MegaMillions lottery drawing. Brian, the singing lessons will have to wait.

So about that movie ... I really enjoyed it, and not having seen the other Oscar nominated movies in which lead actresses were nominated, I'd have to say Hilary Swank did put forward an amazing performance. I'm still bothered by her mouth, though. Something about it ... her teeth are too big. Anyway, I left the theatre with a million dollar question.

What did Clint Eastwood's character, Frankie Dunn, do to anger his daughter so much that she would return his weekly letters unopened? That was harsh. Loved Brian F. O'Byrne as the priest, Father Horvak. What can I say - I'm a sucker for a tall Irishman.

Friday, March 04, 2005

Deja Vu All Over Again

Remember last year when I was obsessing about the Ex? I was all bent out of shape because he hadn't been in contact with me - hadn't even acknowledged the birthday card I sent him. And I was ruminating about how he was just repeating the life he'd led with me, but without me.

Well, he's doing it again.

I still occasionally hack his email, and when I logged in the other day, I got a good chuckle. He had a confirmation form from a travel agency. Seems like he's going on a little trip in April. To Jamaica. A Sandals resort. In Negril. Same place where we went on our honeymoon.

I pity the new girlfriend. She's being forced to relive my life and she doesn't even know it. But it's all good - see, I saw how much the trip is costing him, and I gotta tell you, the 12 day cruise I'm taking at the end of the year costs less than his 7 days in the compound. Because that's what it is. When you go to these all inclusive resorts in Jamaica, you pretty much don't leave the compound because

a) there's no place else to go and
2) there's no way to get there

Enjoy the trip, dear Ex. And if you jump off the cliff at Rick's Cafe again, be sure to show me the photos.

Thursday, March 03, 2005

Damn, They're Good!

Got a nice email message from my Honda dealer reminding me that my 20,000 mile service should be coming up:

Dear Kenna,

Following the recommended maintenance schedule for your 2003 CR-V is the best way to help ensure your vehicle's optimal performance. Properly maintaining your vehicle may also help maintain its resale value. The service department at City Honda is dedicated to providing quality service using Honda Genuine Parts.

We've determined that your mileage should now be approximately 19,468. So it's time for the following service on your 2003 CR-V:

20,000 Mile Honda Recommended Maintenance

Please call us to schedule a service appointment that's convenient for you. Our service department hours are Mon - Wed : 7:00 AM - 7:00 PM Thu - Fri : 7:00 AM - 5:00 PM Sat : 8:00 AM - 3:00 PM By Appointment Only.


Laura, John, Wayne, Gus, Geoff & George
Your Service Team

Okay, so here's the amazing thing - they were pretty darn accurate in approximating my mileage. I just came back from a 330 some odd mile trip yesterday, and my mileage is 19,977. Taking that into account, they guesstimated my mileage to within 200 miles. The amazing thing is that I don't have predictable patterns with my car. Since I walk to work, there can be days when I don't drive it at all. Weeks when the only usage I have is to drive back and forth to the gym and/or grocery store. And then there will be times, like yesterday, when I'll rack up anywhere from 300 to 500 miles.

Pretty damn amazing. Now you see why I'm such a faithful customer.

Tuesday, March 01, 2005

Then Again ...

... maybe not. Had a rant about buyer's remorse and then realized that I was comparing apples to oranges so suddenly it didn't make sense. Story of my life.