12.27.2000

Andrea and I are headed to Ohio for the next few days. Or rather, she's leaving tonight and if I'm lucky I'll sneak onto her plane. We bought the tickets at seperate times and didn't want to spend the extra hundreds of dollars to fly togeter. What can I say? I'm cheap! I've got a house to feed!

Looking through my image archives, I found this gem:

It's been almost 3 months since my baby girl Ellie died. I'm almost to the point where I remember mostly the good things about her--her good days, how much she loved McDonald's (so much so that she'd start barking as soon as we rolled up to the drive-thru), how she rolled in the grass for what seemed like days. I still, and always will, miss her like crazy but at least now I'm remembering the days the sun was shining and not so much the time she was so sick.

News you need to know: Gay.com has rated the best lesbian sex scenes so all you porno-mongers, take note! Link via Valerie

Found what may well be the coolest browser ever, Opera.

12.26.2000

Looking for Kosher, Erotic Chocolates? I thought you were!

Miracles and Loss
Or how I spent my Christmas vacation.

With the arrival of Zeus last week, it became painfully obvious that while we cared for Holly, we just weren't as bonded with her as we are with Alice and Zeus. Right when we realized that Zeus would be staying, it seemed like it might be good to find Holly a wonderful home. No sooner had I spoken those words did my good friend Linea, beagle rescue person beyond compare, find a great home for her. The decision was hard and I still question it, but on Sunday we took Holly to her new home. She's now the only dog of an older man who lives alone. Her new facilities include a yard that made her look huge (and she loved!) and a house that's much bigger than ours, filled with places to sniff and snort.

I cried as we left and for most of the way home but now that it's settling in, I'm more certain it was the right thing for her. We'll be back to visit in two weeks, more for my benefit than anything else. I miss her but I don't miss the guilt in looking at her, knowing that I didn't adore her the way she deserves to be.

Christmas, we were once again a family of four. Most of the day was spent napping, Zeus on the bed beside us, Alice in her bed on the floor. Noticably absent was the snorting and daily morning whining that marked Holly's time with us. We do miss her, and I made it very clear that she's welcome back at any time, for any reason. But it's good that she was able to be someone's Christmas present the way Zeus is for us.

The new LizCam is just minutes away from being operational, so hang on!

12.22.2000

Our fabulous and now far-away friend Carol finds the coolest stuff!

Today is quite possibly the slowest day ever.

For all you O-town fans out there, here's a shitload of content. I admit it, I watched every episode of Making the Band. No, I haven't rushed out to buy posters or CD's.

Today, I believe in Christmas again, or at least in fate and miracles.

Our beagle rescue got a call about an old beagle who needed a home pronto. I scrambled and found someone who could pick him up in Sacramento and bring him 1/2 way, where I was supposed to get him and drop him off at a foster family's house. I didn't expect to fall in love with him.

But I did and this morning, just minutes before he was to go to his foster mom's house, Andrea did too. Zeus is the most amazing dog and the nicest boy beagle in the whole world.

So today, we are a family of five. I'd been missing Ellie so much, I think that Mr. Z was a Christmas gift we were meant to have.

12.21.2000

Holy shit. Christmas is a mere 4 days away. In terms of getting presents, I'm ready, but as the years go on, I've started to wonder what the point is. If the whole idea behind the holiday is to celebrate the birth and subsequent gift-giving of Jesus then why am I trudging off to Macy's and emerging laden with sweatshirts?

We all bitch about Christmas having lost it's meaning but few people (and certainly not me) dare to break free from the tradition of buying gifts this time of year. A guy I play saxophone with is very religious, when I asked him if he was ready for Christmas he said yes, that they don't do presents on Christmas, but rather, buy something if they need it and keep the Christ in Christmas.

The jury's still out on my actual religious beliefs but I'm starting to think that we're all a bunch of hypocrites (yes, of course, myself included) to be buying all these presents in celebration of a holiday that means little to most of us.

What to do instead?
I really don't know. In an ideal world, I could give the $1500 or so I've spent on gifts to my favorite dog rescue (do you know how many dogs that can feed or provide medical care for? Many). I really wanted to do that, then send cards to everyone on my list telling them that I've donated in their name. But I didn't have the balls.

Maybe because I'm stressed, maybe because it's hard to feel in the spirit when it's 60 degrees and sunny, maybe I'm just too cynical, but this year carries no holiday magic but rather the frustration of buying empty gifts for the people I love and wondering why they don't mean more.

Once, again, I have blogging tourette's. I forgot to mention the highlight of my dinner the night I got stuck in Columbus. We went to the Fujiyama Steak House, similiar to Benihana, but different in that the food actually tastes good. Across from us was the biggest redneck family I'd ever seen, complete with buzz cuts and buck teeth. While examining their menus, the smartest of the bunch says 'filet mingon? Is that steak?'

My keyboard is on the fritz (no, Dan, not you), leaving me with sporadic n,h,y and 6 usage.

The Internet is magic. True? Yes. But... (and there's always a but) all that magic is connected by wires. Wires in the walls, in the ground, anywhere they can get them. What this means is that all this magic can go away in an instant. Say, for example, the moment this morning when someone from PG&E was at work, retrofitting our server racks (no, I'm not kidding) by drilling (yes, this is going where you think it's going) a steel plate onto the side of our rack. During this highly technical drilling process, the technician's hand slipped, causing all the phone and Internet connections to disappear in one motion.

It just doesn't get much cooler than that.

Yesterday was a big day. First, I saw a car accident and when I called 911 to report it, they put me on hold. No shit, on hold with 911 as the recording told me that 911 is not to be used for driving dircetions or weather reports. Don't people know that already? Though I must say that sometimes the line between emergency and non-emergency can be blurred. My mom was alone with my Grandma not too long ago, and tried to get Grandma from her bed to the wheelchair but her hands slipped, gently sliding Grandma to the floor. Mom called 911 and the nice men came and helped Grandma get into bed. Perhaps not a life-threatening moment but still one where help was needed.

But I digress.

We went out for dinner, afterwards we drove by the bank and was on the way home when Andrea remembered that she'd left her cell phone at the resturant. So we headed back there and in the 10 minutes since we'd left, the phone had disappeared. Not only that, the staff was largely unwilling to help (the manager asked why she would want to leave her phone number since that meant he could call her at 3 am. I know, it didn't make any sense to me either but it sure wasn't friendly.)

When stuff like this happens, everyone becomes a suspect. I hate things that make me distrust people, because as a rule, I generally do. Fuckers.

12.20.2000

Christmas light displays you may have missed is hilarious. Thanks Thoma

12.19.2000

Pork Fat Rules

Working hard on bringing the LizCam back to life. Be patient, my friends. My lovely visage will be back soon, uploaded every 30 seconds for your viewing pleasure.

12.18.2000

In the theme of what's hot and what's not, rate my rack offers you booby-lovers a chance to change the world. Thanks Andrea, booby-lover

One of my all-time favorite sites: The Abe Vigoda Staring contest.

Speaking of the packing process, as of now, our current home (aka Rental Unit) is now off limits to visitors from the outside. So if you're one of the 4 people reading this who've actually been to our house, memories will have to suffice. It's just too messy for visitors.

So I show up at our new house today with our realtor and the appraiser in tow. Our realtor hadn't called ahead and it appeared that nobody was home so she used her special realtor key and let herself in. Turns out that the seller's incredibly shy teenage son was in the house but didn't want to answer the door.

The place looks a lot like our house does now, like everything has exploded in the packing process. The woman came home and seemed embarrassed that it was like that but hey, I understand. Our house is a landmine too.

Yesterday, Andrea tackled the closet thing under the stairs. Of course, she stopped after getting everything out into the hallway so there were lots of things for the dogs to get into, including an ant trap (shredded to bits, but not to worry, I'd called poison control about this in the past, Alice would have to eat 8 or more of them to have problems. After all they're built with little ants in mind, not 18 pound dogs) and (this is the one that gets me) our wool duster. Blech.

Today the house was appraised and I think we're getting close to finishing all this financing crap. I met our new next door neighbor, Nanette, (yes, Amy, she'll be next-door Nanette forever more!) who is the official neighborhood busybody. She told me all about every family on the street, denoting each with words like (and I am not kidding) Negro and Mexican.

My guess is, she thought she was safe speaking the secret language of White People, which as you, my fair reader, may know, is not something I'm very fluent in. I can't wait till next-door Nanette meets Chinese (and gay) Andrea.

12.15.2000

I think we have a mortgage. Stay tuned!!

Went to my first Sharks game. Going as literally one of 3 Blue Jackets fans didn't make the experience as magical as it could have been. When the Blue Jackets (note: I'm steadfastly resisting the urge to shorten that to BJ) scored their lone goal I was one of three fans cheering. The man next to me said 'they have fans?' I turned to him with my Columbus Blue Jackets sweatshirt pointed right at him and said yes.

Our home financing woes continue. I'm so frustrated I can't even speak of it right now except to say "blech!"

12.14.2000

George W. Bush is better known as Monkey Boy. Anyone up for a campaign of sending bananas to the White House for him? I take some small consolation in knowing that he'll only be in for 4 years.

In deference to my frequent mentions of that Nice Man, Amy directed me to That Nice Man's website.

Who's hot or not on TV is kinda stupid yet captivating.

12.13.2000

Since this morning's discovery of the pornolizer my office has grown addicted to converting every site we can think of into porno speak. A co-worker turned me on to the Dialectizer which converts almost anything into redneck, elmer fudd, jive and more. Try it, you must.

While I'm pretty well guaranteed to never look in the mirror and see my mother (although once, I swear my birthmother was staring back at me. That was eerie shit since I didn't expect it.) once in a while I'll say things that make me stop and say, shit, you can't escape your upbringing, I've become my mother. As far as I can tell, there's no way to stop this other than by catching myself in the act and not saying whatever mom-ism I was about to utter.

I met a person today who genuinely scared me. I'm used to people without social skills--it's largely impossible to work in the computer/Internet world without running into folks who were clearly born to code in a little pen without much human contact. Those people I understand and appreciate their brilliance while expecting next to nothing from them socially. But this person is not only socially inept but asks probing questions that make me loathe to give out any details, lest they later be used as evidence for the restraining order.

This is a rare moment for me, I'm out of things to say about this person, I dont' have a witty comebacks for the comments and questions that scare me.

Ahh yes, but LizSpeaks pornolized into English makes a whole lot more sense. Fistfucks--100% Web "Dripper Dick" Color-Safe at all Wanks

I'm not quite sure what this all means, but here's the pornolized version of my site. Lizspeaks--100% Web "Ass-stitcher" Color-Knulle at all Slikkes

The ad campaign for Butch Dog Food is absolutely hysterical and would never fly here in the conservative US. Link courtesy of LaLa

12.12.2000

Can you tell things are slow at work? I've been reading through the Blogger Directory and am noticing that almost all of the blogs I randomly choose to read are by students. Not only that, the arrival of blogspot lends a certain geocities air to the designs.

This is not to say that these fellow blogging enthusiasts are any more or less a blogger than any of the rest of us, but rather that there's an accessability to blogging that wasn't there before. Which is a good thing because on some level, we all have something to say.

Looking for a crazy amount of people's phone numbers? My Little Black Book has them all.

So far, the winner of my referrer log roulette:Google search for Liz has big boobies.

We switched to a new network at work this week and of course it hasn't gone smoothly so I've been left with a couple of days of downtime. I figured, hey, why not troll my referrer logs and imagine my pleasant surprise when I discovered that Jenlyn and Kate think I'm cool enough to read often. Thanks, folks, and shalom!

Here's something really funny: listening to a man with a severe lisp saying 'catch page' over and over again.

Today we talked to mortgage broker number 3. It's starting to feel like Lou Bega's Mambo No. 5 (which, by the way, he claims that the 5 stands for the 5 continents on the earth. Shh, don't anyone tell him that there are now 7, the last two having been added since he recorded the song). I just want it all to be over with, but with the end result of someone paying me money every month in exchange for owning a home.

12.11.2000

Buying a house has suddenly gone from a far-off dream to reality. That reality means a myriad of expenses and decisions I've never had to make, including how the hell do I buy carpet?

What's your weirdest sexual experience? makes me feel so lame. All that time I spent in high school and college looking for places to have sex wore me out. No, I wasn't having *that* much sex, but the effort required to find a place when I wanted to was a pain in the ass. Now that I'm a grownup, I relish in only having sex in my bedroom or if I'm feeling really extra wacky, the living room.

It sounds so damn novel to make love outside, in an elevator, on a bus, wherever. But really, who wants to be walked in on (maybe you, but not me!) or have brambles in your cooter?

This said, I'll be adding the wackiest sexual experience to my list of daily reads.

Librarian tales of woe sound oddly like Amy's former life in the public library, where a cast of homeless men would enjoy the African-American teen chat rooms, where a middle-aged man was caught downloading pictures of men in pantyhose more than once and a mentally impaired man would call each Tuesday night unfailingly to 'order some CDs.'

Here's to all the librarians, sexy or not, wearers of buns or not, who put up with the public at large while working towards the greater goal of making sure everyone has access to any information that they want or need. Thanks Carol for this marvelous link.

What a weekend. My Saturday started with hockey, where we played a game for most of the class period. During that time, I slammed a guy against the boards (and took a stick in the groin as a reward), took another guy out and had a puck bounce off my foot.

Later that day, we had to go to a different mortgage broker since we didn't know until Friday that our original mortgage people were gouging us not only with insanely high interest rates but with a pre-payment penalty that was complete bullshit. This morning, my original person called and got extremely pissy that we were shopping around. I said I hadn't anticipated needing to do that but hey I'm not going to blindly accept tens of thousands of dollars in additional fees. Sorry, I may be new at this but I can still add.

Occassionaly, I play with a small group of musicians in nursing homes as a volunteer. I do this because it's kinda fun and it's worthwhile to see the residents smile or at least do something different with their afternoons. Mostly, we play hit songs of the 30's and 40's but this week we fudged our way through some Christmas tunes, including the perennial favorite, I'll be home for Christmas. A man who attends our 'concerts' regularly while visiting his wife got up and stormed out of the room during that tune. On his way out, he yelled at our singer Tess, who is herself 84 years old, how dare we play that when no one will be home for Christmas.

Should we have thought of that beforehand? Anticipated his frustration? Were we wrong or inconsiderate to play that song or did that man just over-react? I honestly don't know.

Andrea said 'welcome to America, where my issues are your issues.'

12.08.2000

In keeping with my new passion for hockey, I went to the Ice Chalet last night. The place was packed with teenagers (it was Julie's 16th birthday, whoever Julie is she sure has some loud-ass friends) and to make matters worse, they turned off the lights and turned on some disco lights.

The weirdest part was that I could skate better than 1/2 the people there. I think they all just sucked but it still freaked me out. Could I actually be learning something athletic??

This is cool: Florida Supreme Court orders recount. I'm not crazy about electing a president in the courts, but electing Monkey Boy George Bush would be worse and throwing away ballots is even way they hell worse.

Pictures of our new home are here, sans formatting or pithy comments.

12.07.2000

More real-world reasons to have your pet spayed or neutered. Bottom line: we just don't need any more animals in the world. Every year 5-6 MILLION are killed in shelters because they don't have homes. So snip away kids, and save some lives!

After last week's insanity, work is super-slow this week. Good thing because my brain is still fried from all the drugs I had to do to stay awake last week.

On second thought, tomorrow, I'll just call in drunk.

A co-worker of mine called in sick today. Or rather, he called in insomniac, leaving a 5 am voice mail to prove that he'd been up all night, presumably unable to rest for today's work. Maybe it's fishy, maybe it isn't but I'm still kind of surprised. This job isn't a retail gig or fast food, where your absence means that innocent people are unable to eat fast food or buy products. It's a grown up job, where you call in if you're sick. I guess insomnia seems awfully weak to me, like you should be barfing or something instead.

But hey, I'm kinda tired, maybe tomorrow I'll call in butt tired and see what happens.

Actual spam sent to my work account today:

hussein says:
Hello everybody! If you're away visiting your family, have a good time and say hello for me... but if you're still here like me, here's what's happening at POLANKA this friday.
Since everyone liked MONA, the talented, exotic & beautiful belly dancer, she's back this friday at 8 pm. Do not miss her.
ALSO THIS FRIDAY: * Free buffet at all times * Great music by our favorite DJ Fernando and Big D * No charge at the door (Just make sure you drink like a fish) Just a joke
MORE big highlights for THIS FRIDAY, * 5pm - 7pm 2 for 1 drinks * Ladies, BE there at 7pm, your 2nd drink - ON the house * Bring THREE friends, spend $60... GO home with a FREE bottle of wine.
Stay tuned for more friday features from the place to be:
POLANKA 22 Warren street, 1 blk from City Hall, hello Rudy! New York, NY 10007 212 385-9987
Bring this E-mail printed... get a free shot of rattle snake.
You do not like something? E-mail me lets talk about it.
see you all, happy holidays your host Hussein & Irina & Kasia polanka22@ecxite.com

12.06.2000

How fabulous is this? Our soon to be new neighborhood comes complete with a head shop, for all your local doobage needs!

Check out Ellie's new namesake, currently staying with the good people of Arizona Basset Hound Rescue.

My Grandma is astounding. Today, she's eating again and looking for outfits to wear when she finally gets out of bed. I don't know what to think, I'll just be glad that she's feeling better.

12.05.2000

It seems that my Grandma is finally losing the fight for her life. She's 95 and until a year ago, was in reasonably good health. The last year has been a huge struggle between the hospital, a nursing home and finally at home the last few months. I know that you can't mess with fate and I acknowledge that her quality of life isn't what any of us would want for her and yet the thought that she's about to exit this world is extremely hard.

She's my best friend, always has been. At times, she was my only friend. She's my unfailing supporter. When the family wasn't thrilled to find out that I'm gay, she was there, telling them to shut up and get over it. Always my pal.

The last couple of years, I've bought a ticket home every time the price got low, even if I didn't have the vacation time. We had some amazing conversations, time together that I cherish now and always will.

People keep asking if I'm scared about buying a house, am I nervous, do I feel like I've just signed my life away, etc. Shit no. After our Evil Landlord raised the rent so much and was nasty on top of it this fall, my main motivation in buying a house is being free from letting someone else have that kind of control over me.

Sure, a mortgage is a shitload of money, but at least there's an end to it. Rent you keep paying forever and what do you have? In our case, shit and a nasty landlord.

Our payment won't go up, we can't get kicked out, we can change things on the inside (which we plan to) and we can have as many pets as we feel comfortable with. Sounds like a pretty fantastic deal to me.

Does this mean I'm a grownup?

The God and Devil Show : Dr. Laura is hilarious. Yes, it takes forever to load but it's so worth it! Thanks Carol


We bought a house!!
Or rather, we're in contract on a house but soon, very soon, this lovely home will be ours!!!

12.04.2000

We were watching a hockey game the other night. Every time they showed the Southwest Airlines goalie cam, complete with the closeup of the goalie's butt, I lost it. Hell, I'm losing it now just thinking about it! They should just call it ass-cam.

It's true, I haven't been very blog-ative lately. We're super-ass-busy at work, I'm still exhausted from Thanksgiving and for the most part, I just don't feel like talking.

Life is often hard, right now is no exception for me. I'm not talking about it because I don't want to explain it further right now, nor am I looking for pity.

I'm okay, we're all okay. Just less okay than usual. We'll be back to our regularly scheduled programming soon enough.

I just had Sanford & Son tourette's, singing the theme song over and over to myself.

In case you were wondering, here are the 4275 most popular women's names according to the US Census.

Is that why I filled out that form?

12.01.2000

Today's exciting discovery--if you let Red Vines sit long enough exposed to the air, they become so stale that they break if you drop them. Try it. It's fun!

It's been a long week, kids. Between getting up at the butt crack of dawn Monday to fly back here and run to work, looking at a shitload of depressing houses (more than once we said, you want how much for that piece of crap??) and the exciting Top Secret ™ project at work, my ass is fried. Want proof? Come take a look.