January 2007 archive

(23 entries)

January 30, 2007



I have been a walking fiend for the last few weeks! Unless I break my leg in the next two days, I am on track to actually meet my month's walking goal for the first time since October.

Go srah!

srah | 12:43 PM
Tags: walker tracker, walking

What... is your favorite word?


This is just a reminder, since I never remember about this until the last minute, that this Friday is Candlemas. So get your crêpes and tamales ready!

I never seem to manage to hold on to one crêpe recipe from year to year, so I don't have a tried-and-true favorite to give you. Here's the one I'll probably be using, though.

srah | 12:29 PM
Tags: crepes, food, holidays, la chandeleur

January 29, 2007

I bet his hair wouldn't even move at all

I sent a card to apete this morning¹ and was about to put the stamp on when I remembered the old chestnut that an upside down stamp means "I love you"². I was going to stick the upside-down stamp onto the envelope when I realized that it was one of the boring old standard stamps with the American flag on it. I wasn't sure exactly what it meant to hang the flag upside down, but I was pretty sure it wasn't good³. I was so conflicted I just stood there deliberating for a few moments with a stamp stuck to the end of my finger, and ended up putting the stamp on right-way-up.

Curse you, boring standard stamps! I am going to go out and buy some Ronald Reagans or something that I can feel comfortable flipping upside down.4

¹ I would say 'Oops, I spoiled the surprise' but he never reads my blog anymore - sniff sniff - so I probably didn't.

² According to the American Philatelic Society, what I actually would have conveyed is "Write no more!" but the USPS would much prefer that I put my stamp in the right corner.

³ I later found out it's a distress signal.

4 Hi. I love footnotes.

srah | 5:11 PM
Tags: american flag, stamps

January 25, 2007

Mine eye has seen the glory, now I'm lying on the floor

I've been having some trouble over the past few days with a pain in my eye socket. I had myself convinced that I had a stye or a scratch on my eye that was rapidly getting infecteder or that Scott Baio gave me pinkeye, so I made an appointment with my doctor ASAP. I am rather sensitive about my eyes and that tends to make me panic and expect the worst, so I wanted to nip this in the bud before my eye got so infected it had to be removed and I would have to wear an eye patch like a pirate, which wouldn't be so bad on September 19th but would be a pain the rest of the year.

The doctor examined my eye and it went a little a-like-a-thees:

Doctor: [examining the eye and eyelid] Do you have any drainage?
Me: Not that I've noticed.
Doctor: Have you had any fever?
Me: Not that I've noticed.
Doctor: Does the eyelid seem red to you?
Me: Not that I've noticed.
Doctor: So... it just hurts.
Me: Yeah.
Doctor: Does it hurt here? [pokes my cheekbone]
Me: I guess.
Doctor: [unspoken: Why are you wasting my time, you insane hypochondriac???] You probably have some sinus pressure pushing on your eye. You should take an over-the-counter nasal decongestant and then get back to me if it seems to get worse.

So hooray, a $20 co-pay to be told something that probably should have occurred to me on my own!

I went back to work and finished the day. I suppose it was a relief to know that my eye probably wasn't going to fall out. I didn't get to Kroger until about 8pm, and I almost forgot to look at the healthcare aisle, because I'd sort of gotten used to having one eye that didn't roll around as well as the other. I looked through the selection of nasal decongestants and found that I would have to pay about $2 more for the medications with phenylephrine as the decongestant agent than for those with pseudoephedrine. I am all about saving the Almighty Dollar¹ so I picked up the little card for the store brand pseudoephedrine-based decongestant and took it to the pharmacy counter².

Before I could receive my drugs, I had to show the pharmacist my driver's license, then fill out my address and phone number and signature on a sheet where they keep a list of all the pseudoephedrine-buyers so that they can report you to the authorities if you seem to be buying suspicious amounts. It is all very scary and almost put me off being cheap.


I am very cheap.

The pharmacist also warned me that basically all nasal decongestants are non-drowsy because the decongestant ingredients can make you jumpy³, so I shouldn't take it before going to bed.

When I woke up this morning, my stupid eye socket still hurt, so I threw a few decongestant tablets into my morning medication mix. WHEEEEEEEEEEE! OHMYGODOHMYGODIHAVESOMUCHTODOTODAY buuuut iiiiii'm sooooo tiiiiiiired. I thiiink I'lllll juuuuust liiiiie dowwwwn herrrrre aaaannnd OHMYGODICAN'TSTOPTHINKING zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz ISTHATMYHEARTBEATWHYCANIFEELMYHEARTBEATINGLIKETHAT aaaas IIII driiiiiift awaaaaay to sleeeeep. So I called in "sick, probably coming in later" and went to sleep, which was pretty easy considering how wired my brain was half the time. I don't know why meth-heads bother going through all the trouble and danger of making meth when clearly you can get pretty messed up just from nasal decongestants. But then again, everything I know about meth, I learned from Rex Morgan, M.D.4.

Get Fuzzy, 1/24/2007When I woke up, I was still a little woozy, but the manic half of my brain pointed out that there wasn't much for me to do at home and that there was plenty for me to do at work, so if I wanted to keep the manic side happy, I had better keep it occupied. So this is why I just spent my lunch break typing up this exciting account of my adventures with not-meth. Well, that and the paint fumes I've been inhaling as they retouch the hallway outside my office.


¹ Or even better, the Almighty Two Dollars.

² As you may know, the purchase of pseudoephedrine is usually controlled because it is one of the ingredients in crystal meth. In this case, it's not available on the shelves and has to be requested from a pharmacist.

³ He used some grown-up pharmacist word instead of "jumpy".

4 Or more accurately, The Comics Curmudgeon's ongoing commentary on the meth-lab saga in Rex Morgan, M.D.

srah | 1:04 PM
Tags: cheapness, doctor, eyes, medicine, sick

January 24, 2007

'Give her hell from us, Peeves.'

For more than a month now, I have been working my way through the book-on-tape of Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix. It's such a long book that I haven't reread it since it first came out, and I thought I probably ought to have a refresher before the movie comes out. The book-on-tape format works well for a book like this - I just pick up where I left off every time I get in the car and don't have to lug that huge tome around. I started it before driving up to Michigan for Christmas, have since returned to Michigan and back, driven all over the Town I Live In and its environs and I am still working on that suckah. The only drawback to this format is that Dolores Umbridge is likely to cause extreme road rage.

I am right around the end of the book now, and ready to pick up Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, which I may actually take a crack at rereading in text form. Anyone know if JKR has finished Book 7 yet?

srah | 12:33 PM
Tags: books, books on tape, harry potter, harry potter and the order of the phoenix

January 23, 2007


Isidore is sick.

Isidore is sick.

Isidore is Blue Screen of Death-style sick.

I am frightened.

I am at work after hours so I can use their Internet to take my Jeopardy! test and find Dell's tech support phone number (oh joy) and reconfigure my email addresses so that I can read email over the web.

It is sad times around here. I hope my poor baby (who is now almost three years old, or "ancient" in laptop years) will pull through.

srah | 7:14 PM
Tags: computers, isidore

January 22, 2007

It's very evident/ These attentions are well meant

Apete gave me an mp3 player for Christmas, so ever since then I've been experimenting with different mixes of music to play on it while I go for my walks. It's pretty obvious that pop music like the Spice Girls and Britney Spears, while not exactly something you want to go around advertising to the world that you listen to, have a pretty good beat for keeping a good walking pace. So as long as you keep the volume low and those earbuds firmly pushed into your ear, no one need know. On the other hand, the tempo of Chayanne's Torero almost killed me yesterday, so it's the type of song you might want to sneak into the mix here and again, but it's not really a speed that I can keep up for extended periods (yet).

Musicals are a little tougher to add to the mix. They are very good to listen to, but seem to have a lot more tempo changes than pop music. "When the Foeman Bares His Steel" from Pirates of Penzance has a nice tempo for walking and it stays constant throughout the track. It seems like it might be the ultimate musical mp3 for walking. However, it may not be entirely appropriate for playing on your mp3 player at the gym if you are such a Gilbert & Sullivan nerd that you feel the need to wave your arms around and high-kick and emote that you want people to go and die.

Go to death, and go to slaughter;
Die, and every Cornish daughter
With her tears your grave shall water.
Go, ye heroes, go and die!

srah | 5:26 PM
Tags: gilbert and sullivan, music, the pirates of penzance, walking


I read this introduction to Battlestar Galactica last night in the hopes of understanding all the hype (since everyone seems to be watching it now, and not just my nerdy very very hip boyfriend). I didn't really understand it any more than I've understood anything else I've seen about the show, but then I had a dream where I was in the show (which I have never watched). First I was in a meeting where everybody there was two different models of Cylons - one that looked like some kind of nasty reptilian beast like from Alien and the other that looked human, except with a bald babydoll head. I think the reptilian beasts were less scary! This meeting erupted into all of the Cylons yelling at each other and arguing so I left.

In the next part of the dream, I was trying to join the resistance against the Cylons, and I got a tip-off about where one of the meetings was going to be, so I went to this hospital and somehow Starbuck (I think), who was a doctor in this hospital, found me wandering in the halls and showed me where the meeting was. We had to run because we weren't supposed to be in that wing and some guy caught us there. We arrived at the meeting, where some black guy was up in front of the room giving a lecture. I told the room, panting after running all over the hospital, that the guy (who was either a Cylon or a spy) was on our tail and everyone was going to have to act normal. They were acting pretty normal anyway, and didn't seem to be plotting anything.

But later in the dream, we were all dressed up in black and on some commando mission to blow something up. I suspected that a Sharon was going to betray us to the Cylons but no one would listen to me because I was the n00b.

srah | 6:43 AM
Tags: battlestar galactica, dream

January 21, 2007

Crunch crunch crunch!

Since I have nothing interesting to talk about right now, I will instead share with you the two videos whose songs have been vying for ALL THE ROOM IN MY HEAD ALL WEEKEND.

[via Best Week Ever]

srah | 9:11 AM
Tags: video, youtube

January 16, 2007

We don't need a map to keep this show on the road

I went up to Michigan this weekend. I bought gas before I left town, thinking "Well, gas is usually cheaper here than most places, so I'll buy some. Wow, $2.14! I haven't seen prices like that in a long time! What a good deal!" Then as I drove north, I passed gas stations advertising regular unleaded for $2.05, $1.96 and even $1.81. Booooo.

Although my gas was a lot cheaper on the way home, the drive was more stressful because Ann Arbor was hit with freezing rain over the weekend, and I expected to be driving through the same as I returned south. So if you were stuck behind someone driving 55 mph on I-75, gripping the wheel like a maniac with their windshield wipers flailing back and forth, I apologize. Apparently that was actually just a sprinkling of regular rain, and I am a paranoid maniac.

srah | 10:01 PM

January 15, 2007


I dreamt last night that there was a tribe of cannibals living on Mackinac Island. You could visit their settlement and the museum on its grounds. We went to the museum, which was very expensive, and my dad crossed the velvet ropes in order to look more closely at the caption on a photo on the wall. This angered the cannibal docents, who started growling and moving toward him, so he returned to the other side of the ropes and we went on to the gift shop, which was also very expensive. Stupid cannibals, taking all of our money! But they had a monopoly, because they were the only visitable settlement of cannibals in the US.

srah | 8:43 PM
Tags: cannibals, dream, mackinac island, srahdad

January 12, 2007

'Me lobe you, Long Tim'

These are my thoughts on TV this week, which were all too short and pointless to have their own posts, but which I feel are justifiable when you chuck them all together into one post. Caution: Spoilers ahoy for all y'all who Tivoed House, Beauty and the Geek or The Office.

srah | 12:06 PM
Tags: beauty and the geek, house, reviews, the office, tv

January 11, 2007

Stirring and stirring and stirring my brew

First my dentist had a problem with me drinking sugary tea. Now there are reports that milk cancels out all those health benefits that we, the tea-addicted, were happy to hear we were accidentally getting.

I can't help but feel personally persecuted by Science. Curse you, Science! Why are you out to ruin my daily (or several times daily) cuppa? If it isn't Science who's at the bottom of all this, I suspect it's all a conspiracy by the mint/oolong tea industries to get me, the main consumer of all the tea in the whole world, to switch away from Earl Grey/English Breakfast.

[via Cheryl and The Consumerist]

srah | 12:25 PM
Tags: dentist, health, tea


Happy birthday to my lovely boyfriend! You keep on birthdaying it up, yo!

[In the interest of full disclosure, I will admit that I had been all nerdily excited about blogging about apete's 24 birthday today and originally posted this as such. Then I realized I wasn't sure about my math so I Googled the answer and discovered I was wrong. I am glad apete is 25 and not 24 because that would be illegal and gross. I am also glad that Google foresaw that there would be stupid people like me Googling really basic math questions and built that into their search engine.]

srah | 8:21 AM
Tags: apete, birthday, holidays, math

January 10, 2007

You, on the motorcycle!¹

It's the Third Annual De-Lurking Week (or so I have heard from Below the Eight, Jamelah.net and Just Hungry). So if you've been lurking around the blog for a while without commenting, feel free to drop us a line and introduce yourself. Hiya!

¹ I had to change the title of this post from a Meatballs quote to a Blues Brothers one, because it turns out I've already used "Hey you, on the waterskis" as a post title twice. I am getting senile.)

srah | 12:13 PM
Tags: delurking, memes

And what the hell is on Joey's head?

Many of my blogfriends are participating in projects/memes on Flickr where you take a picture every day for a year. I put off joining any of these so that I could get started on January 1... and then I didn't actually take any pictures on January 1. I finally got started on the 3rd, so I am now finished with a whole week. I present to you my first week in Project 365!:

House/apartment building/something New bumper and taillight Aero instant hot chocolate drink I got a hippopotamus for Christmas Another Christmas present Pink sky at night, sailors take fright Sundial

I hope that quality of photographs and subject matter will improve as the year goes on. Frankly I'm just impressed that I haven't missed a day yet!

srah | 12:07 PM
Tags: flickr, memes, photos, project 365

January 4, 2007

No thank you, fish make love in it

I went to the dentist yesterday for the first time in almost two years (I know, I am a filthy horrible person and I am ashamed) and learned that I have some cavities (I am even more ashamed, thank you). At least she didn't say anything about gingivitis.

The dentist said that from the type and location of the cavities, she could deduce that they were probably caused by drinking sugary liquids... liquids like... tea with sugar. She's like House! She said that I didn't necessarily need to stop or even cut down on the tea or the sugar, but that I should drink a cup all at once (rather than drawing it out over a long period of time) and either rinse out my mouth or drink some water afterwards, to clean off the sugary residue. She even said that it wasn't a good idea to immediately brush your teeth after drinking tea or coffee, because you can brush the stain and/or sugar into your teeth. How educational! So there is your lesson in dentistry for the day.

All in all, though, it would probably do me some good to drink more water - not just for the health of my teeth, but to stave off dehydration and starvation and keep me alert. I'm sure I don't get the recommended daily amount, no matter how hard I try. So my new New Year's resolution (never mind that the year began a few days ago) is to Drink More Water.

srah | 6:18 PM
Tags: dentist, health, tea, water

What's up, m'nerds?

Last night around 7:30, I checked the TVGuide.com listings to find out which channel the season premiere of Beauty and the Geek¹ was on. And I couldn't find it anywhere! That's okay, the TVGuide.com listings are sometimes weird and sometimes they are a day off and it takes some fiddling to get them to catch up. So I checked out Yahoo! TV, my back-up² source for TV listings when TVGuide is being a spaz. It wasn't on there either! I resigned myself to the fate of having to illegally super-legally download episodes from the Internet and started watching a DVD, but then around 8:15, something made me stop Inspector Lynley and give channel-surfing a try. And there it was, right there on channel 2, where it did not appear in any of my listings. Liars!

So I got to watch my lovely show and see the Beauties take cards out of a card catalogue (which I'm sure was brought out of some storage room just for this event) and then fail to locate the books they corresponded to. C'mon, Beauties! Dewey Decimal System here! This isn't even Library of Congress! And the Geeks did stand-up comedy, which was supposed to be a social challenge. I don't think it was necessarily much of a social challenge, because I suspect a lot of geeks would rather get up and tell jokes to an audience than talk one-on-one to people.

My favorite and least favorite characters are already developing. I think that Sheree is a ringer, I like the comradeship between Cecile and Nate, Mario is fun (and reads Pop Candy) and my favorite Geek is Scooter, because he has a beard and his profile says he likes maps and culinary experimentation. Sound like anyone we know?

The season has begun! Who will join me in my television-watching quest?

¹ A.K.A. The Best Reality Show On TV Now That The Biggest Loser's Season Is Over And That Includes You, American Idol.

² Hey look, Microsoft tried to have its own TV listings site! Isn't that just so precious? I heard they have a search engine, too.

srah | 6:01 PM
Tags: beauty and the geek, tv

January 3, 2007

Power of Sexy Librarian Friends... Engage!

Dear Sexy Librarian Friends,

(Wouldn't it be great if all of my posts started like that? Oh, it wouldn't? My bad.)

It turns out that you have more to worry about than Ken Jennings' hordes. Not once but twice in this very evening I have witnessed fiendish library abusers taking cards right out of the card catalogue! And sometimes throwing them around! You would think someone would invent some sort of... rod... that would go through... holes... in the bottom of the card to keep them in place. Or perhaps even a computerized catalogue system of some sort! Yes, I think I am on to something. But fear not, dear sexy librarian friends. For I am so enamored of the public sharing of information that I will let you use my "card catalogue rod" and "computerized catalogue system" ideas free of charge! Huzzah!

[video via librarian.net]

srah | 11:10 PM
Tags: librarydom

Yub yub

I can't even describe how weird it was to watch the Rose Bowl Parade on Monday and see hundreds of Star Wars stormtroopers marching in formation. It was like The Empire had taken over Pasadena. It was awesome and it was weird and I thought it was totally cool and I was kind of embarrassed that I thought that.

As with all the weird-ass Oklahoma floats that were there for no reason (go have your own parade, Oklahoma, and get out of ours!), there was no connection to the Rose Bowl - it was just a chance for people to show off. At least with George Lucas as Grand Marshal, the stormtroopers had a connection to the parade itself, if not to the game or the theme of the bowl. Unlike Oklahoma! Oklahoma, go home!

Unfortunately, none of the pictures I've seen on Flickr have really captured what a weird clash it was to see stormtroopers surrounded by roses and football fans and shops and things, but here are the ones I liked the best:

Stormtroopers on the parade route
See, this guy has managed to make a link between the parade and the game!
Um... the brave soldiers of the 1138th Musketeers. Or something.

srah | 12:58 PM
Tags: rose bowl, star wars

For the civilized world accepts as unforgivable sin/ Any talking out loud with any librarian

...if you’ve enjoyed the free books, media items, Internet, etc. at a local library during this year, let them know with a little holiday donation. Or if the reason you use the library is because you don’t have any cash to throw around, offer to volunteer at your library instead. If both time and money are in short supply this winter, use your body. Romance a lonely librarian...

- ken-jennings.com

Dear Sexy Librarian Friends,

If you're wondering why a bunch of penniless nerds are hanging around you, winking and whispering sweet nothings, it's because Ken Jennings has sicced his brigade of loyal fans onto you. Thought you might like some warning.

srah | 12:37 PM
Tags: ken jennings, librarydom

January 2, 2007

Hail to the Chief Victors

The holiday season was also significantly marked by the passing of President Gerald Ford, who is probably more of an icon around the srahfam household than... most households. Srahdad was scheduled to have the Christmas week off, but unfortunately those plans changed when Our President passed away on the 26th. It's nice that President Ford had one last Christmas with his family... and that he didn't have to see Michigan lose (again) yesterday.

srah | 7:08 AM
Tags: gerald ford, rip

2007: A Srah Odyssey

Hello Internet!

I had a relatively Internet-free week (mostly just keeping up with WalkerTracker so that I could actually remember what caused me such abyssmal step-counts). It was awesome, but now I have a lot of reading to catch up on. As for me, I got to spend time with the boyfriend and his family as well as srahfam, have many many Christmases (Christmii?), see Spamalot, and go walking at the mall a couple of times. Now I'm back home with TONS of stuff to unpack, which will probably keep me busy until the next time I go home.

This will also be a fascinating week because I have to offer up my car to the body shop to have a new bumper put on¹, so I will have to find alternative means of transport for at least three days. Perhaps I will actually use my feet, and fulfill my New Year's resolution to skew my step-count more to the direction of walking and less to the direction of making turtle-related excuses! Perhaps I will talk someone into giving me a ride! Only time will tell.

Anyway, now I will post this entry and make my sad little blog less blank. Happy 2007, blogketeers!

¹ I realize that I never got around to the oft-put-off blogging about the accident I was in before Christmas, but never mind - I'm alive and the car's only minus a bumper and a taillight and the other car didn't even have as much damage as I did.

srah | 6:48 AM
Tags: car, news, walking

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