Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

The Awesome of 2008

I hope everyone is keeping warm. Winter came early to Central Texas this year and showered us with a small ice/snow storm last night. While I did not enjoy emerging from my warm cocoon of blankets at 6:30 this morning to drag myself to dialysis, I was thankful the streets were not frozen and I did not have to scrape ice off of my car. I enjoyed my trip home much more, admiring the Christmassy look of the snow dusted houses with a hot cup of Starbucks in hand.

The League has made a call for 2008 Top Ten lists and since I've been less than inspired of late in regards to blogging (you may have noticed, ahem) I will oblige. Since this year has been relatively kind (knock on wood - don't take that as a challenge, 2008), I will be taking a glass half full approach and reflect upon the Awesome of 2008.

And so, in no particular order:

McSteans' 2008 Top Ten
1. New floors and new TV
Thanks to both sets of parents, Christmas came early this year to League HQ. Ryan's folks got us new floors and painted walls and my parents pitched in with a new LCD flat screen. The downstairs looks so much better, although I think the pets are unhappy with their loss of traction and lack of carpet to destroy. Lucy tried to improvise a few weeks back when I caught her horking up an unidentifiable plastic object on the couch instead of the easy-to-clean floor. Thanks, Lu!

2. Music
I've been listening to lots of new bands this year (new to me - some of them have been around a while) and my iPod is aglow with the tunes of TV on the Radio, Black Kids, and Spoon, just to name a few. I have to give a shout out to Steanso for introducing me to some of these guys.


3. Twilight
Sigh. This one is beyond embarrassing to admit, but I've gotten myself hooked on the Twilight books. Fine literature? Not even close. Entertaining and addictive? Like heroin in candy form. I blame my mom, who also has the Twilight sickness, for getting me hooked. Oh, and - we've already seen the movie twice.

Please, I need help...

4. Movies
This fall has been a bit of a barren wasteland for movies courtesy of the writer's strike (thanks Warner Brothers, for making me wait 8 more months for the new Harry Potter movie), but there were a few summer movies that stuck with me. Iron Man, Dark Knight, and WALL-E, were not only very well done, but highly entertaining. I would like to have them all on Blue Ray soon.

5. Television
Speaking of barren wastelands... television suffered even more than movies this year, but there were a couple of bright spots. The strike allowed for Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles to have a second chance due to a dearth of new fall pilots. Thanks to a scheduled end date, LOST has gotten its groove back. The writers finally gave us some answers and, due to the abbreviated season, the episodes were packed with plot. Yay, plot!

Haven't you learned by now - I ALWAYS have a plan?

6. Old friends
Those of you that were reading a few months ago may remember that I attended an informal high school reunion back in September. It was a blast catching up with friends I hadn't seen in 15 years. Last month, my friend Rebecca, who I've known nearly 30 years (YIKES) was in town for a conference and stayed with us for a few days. It was great getting to know her again and I miss not having her closer.

7. The Dug
Doug was able to come for a week long visit this spring and I actually made it out of Austin to visit him in Berkeley in October. He's also coming for two weeks for the holidays. Yays!

A visit from the Dug is sure to bring fun and bad movies

8. Parents moving closer
As previously mentioned, my parents moved into their new retirement home in San Marcos in October and it's been great having them so close. I try to make it down to their house about once a week and we get to see them when they come to Austin for shopping, lectures, etc. They even attended the Capitol tree lighting with us on Saturday. Ryan's parents had their new home built in Steiner Ranch up in northwest Austin and have also been spending more time in our area. We had a fun Thanksgiving with the Steanses and are looking forward to their permanent move in a couple of years.

9. Ryan's new jobby job
What makes me happiest this year is that Ryan found a job he enjoys (or at least seems to). He no longer arrives home from work looking pained and stressed, but most times relaxed and in a good mood. It was great that he was able to get back in with UT, especially in these difficult financial times. We are incredibly grateful for that, and I am thankful he is happy.

10. "44"

Dear God, Thank You

Friday, December 5, 2008

Friday Fun

Thanks to Nathan for the link.

Quantum of Wallace

Thanks to Doug for this one (don't try this at home, kids): Extreme Gymnastic Bullfighting. You just really don't want to get the timing wrong on that one.

Thursday, November 20, 2008


Tuesday morning I piled the dogs in the car to take them down to Happy Hills Puppy Farm (aka, my parents' half acre of backyard in San Marcos). The dogs love it there and it was great to see Lucy leaping over their decorative wall in pursuit of tennis balls and random woodland creatures. Tuesday was a lovely 72°, so Mel spent some time flipping around on his back, attempting to maximize sun exposure to his tummy. I'll have to start taking them down there more often.

My mom and I had plans to see the 12:00 show of "The Secret Life of Bees" since we both liked the book and were curious, despite mediocre reviews, about the movie. I was slightly shocked to see my dad heading to the car with us for such a girly movie, but then realized that's just how bored he is already. He's only been retired since September. This is not a good sign.

Someone made a crack about there not being any tickets available as we turned into the deserted theater parking lot, but we then realized walking to the ticket counter that they had cancelled all shows before 2:00 and just didn't post it on the website. Nice.

Now we'll never know what the bees are up to

Our movie plans spoiled, we came up with the idea to go bowling. We bowled a lot when Doug and I were kids. Sports not being our forté, bowling was one activity we could manage without hurting ourselves.

There's only one bowling alley in San Marcos (I still find that hard to believe, but whatever), so we made our way to Sunset Bowling Lanes, only to find it full of Texas State undergrads knocking out a course credit. I went to the wrong school. I had to take raquetball for my PE credit at Trinity, which was neither fun for me nor safe for my classmates (I had a little problem with aim).

Anyhoo, they did have one lane open, so we found some shoes, grabbed some snacks, and started bowling. I wasn't expecting much out of my performance since it's been at least 3 years since I've bowled (Wii bowling does, apparently, NOT count). So I was shocked that the first time I sent the ball down the lane I got a strike.

This was, however, a fluke.

Bowling fail

I bowled possibly the worst 2 games of my adult life, scoring an 84 and a 79. I think from now on I'll stick to Wii sports.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Rebecca and Longhorns

My friend Rebecca made a return appearance in Austin this week, changing her travel plans to spend the last three days of her trip here instead of in Houston. I was thrilled she decided to come back as I rarely get to see her. She was the closest thing I had to a sister growing up (I have one brother and she has three) and it was wonderful to get reacquainted.

Rebecca's mom, Dr. Kinslow, drove down from Oklahoma and the three of us, plus my mom, went shopping at the San Marcos outlet mall on Thursday. The trip harkened back to our annual back to school outings when the four of us would pile in the Kinslow's van and venture north to the malls of Oklahoma City to buy Guess overalls and Outback Red shirts. We were stylin'.

Thursday we failed to purchase any Guess gear, but Rebecca and I did duck into the Converse store. Good times. Anyway, it was great having Rebecca and her mom here and I hope we can continue doing a better job of keeping in touch.

Yesterday we had some folks over to watch the Longhorns steamroll Kansas. Ryan grilled some tasty Central Market meats (sausages and chipotle chicken) and we enjoyed the cool weather, good company, and a fun game.

If you didn't catch the game, check Shipley out. The good part is the slo-mo replay.


Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Curse you, daylight savings

I'm not sure why this is bothering me so much this year, but I can't seem to get used to the time change that's been with us for over a week now. As soon as it hits 8:00 at night I start dragging, but if I go to bed early I wake up early, so I've been TRYING to stay up until my normal bedtime.

As much as we complained about Arizona, they had the smarts to do away with daylight savings. There is was more a matter of wanting the sun to go down as soon as it came up during the summer months, but really in this day and age is it necessary? Daylight savings was initially instituted for farmers who now make up how much of the population? Isn't it less than 1%?*

Last night I didn't make it and turned in before 10:00, so here I sit at 6:25 in the morning, it's pitch black outside and I can't go back to sleep.

*farmers please don't send me hate mail. It's too early for fact checking, and I haven't had my Starbucks yet.

Friday, November 7, 2008

Stuff I did this week

Sorry for the lack of posting. It's been a good week, what with shopping with my mom on Tuesday and a visit from my childhood best friend, Rebecca, Thursday.

Rebecca is in town for a conference. It's amazing how easy it is to regress back to your childhood self with someone who's known you forever. We laugh a lot at dumb things we did as kids, and dumb things we do as adults. I wish she lived in Austin so we could hang out more. That was my not so subtle plea to get her to move here. Rebecca and Juan, you need to move to Austin!

It seems like something else good happened this week, but I'm having trouble remembering.....

Shoot, what was that.......

Oh. That's right.

Ya'll, I seriously cried during his speech on Tuesday. It's like I've been repressing my feelings about the downward spiral we've been in for so long and that all finally came out. For the first time in 8 years I felt hopeful. The polls kept saying Obama was probably going to win, but I couldn't make myself believe until it actually happened. I know we were all joking about leaving the country after the last election, but I think if he hadn't won I would have been on the phone with my Aunt Helen in Canada begging for her to take in the League household; Mel, Lucy, and Jeff the Cat included.

O, Canada!

So Tuesday during the day, while trying not to think about the election, my mom and I headed to Barton Creek Mall. Here's the deal with me and shopping: I am not a shopper. I go shopping maybe twice a year. These trips are usually the result of Ryan begging me to please go buy some new clothes. It has taken years of training for Ryan to get me to stop whining and pulling on his arm any time he starts browsing at Target. Maybe it's my short attention span, but when I go shopping by myself, I have a list and I want to get in and out as quickly as possible. This is why I hate malls. Normally I stick to shopping at places like the Arboretum so that I have an easy escape route from each store.

I was honestly a little disappointed with the fall offerings in stores this year and walked away with only a couple of shirts and a nice coat (thanks, Mom!). We did, however, see these:

That's right: Ugg Crocs.

I'd like to know who masterminded this hybrid of ugly shoe and ugly shoe. Isn't the point of Uggs (there's really not a point, but I'm stretching here) to keep your feet warm and the point of Crocs that they're something you can slip on in the summer?

I don't understand you, Ugg Crocs. You are hideous and serve no purpose.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Friday, October 31, 2008

Happy Halloween

Quotes of the night:

Ryan, to pint sized storm trooper: "Hey! Storm trooper!"
Storm trooper: "How did you know I was a storm trooper?"
Ryan: "How did 'I' know you were a storm trooper???"

Tiny Batman, to Ryan: "I'm here to help you save the day, Superman!"

We had a great Halloween with tons of kids, beautiful weather, and a surprise visit from Steven and Lauren. Thanks for stopping by, guys!

Steven was so enamored with his tri-cornered hat it may make further appearances as his pontificatin' hat.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

A Late Congratulations

A very late congratulations to my friends and college roommates Shannon and Erica. Shannon's baby, Owen Caid Lowry, was born September 3 and Erica gave birth October 20 (apparently almost in the car) to Isaac Erhardt Sevigny. Congratulations, guys! I can't wait to come see them both.

Also, today is Erica's birthday. Happy Birthday, Bug!

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Austin holds record for most zombies

From Thrill the World, Austin:

Did you know that we broke TWO world records today?

Last year's world record for the largest, simultaneous, (multiple location) world-wide Thriller dance was 1722. Today we almost doubled that number. Today, at the same exact time, 3960 zombies from 9 different countries in 65 different cities participated in Thrill the World (official number still to be verified). Austin contributed just under 25% of that!

The other record that we broke is the record for the largest, single location Thriller dance. The record was held by 147 zombies from a middle school in England. We knew we were going to break that record because we had that many people crammed in to our second Thriller workshop! So, we claimed that record for Austin, Texas and SMASHED that record today with 881 zombies dancing on the patio at the Long Center. Plus we did it in style. We didn't use amplified cuing, we didn't have lead dancers on a raised platform, and we didn't play the instructional video. And our zombies were some of the scariest and most creative zombies on the planet.

Top 10 cities:
1. Austin, Texas: 881
2. Gurnee, Illinois: 334
3. Seattle, Washington: 195
4. Corpus Christi, Texas: 150
5. Kelowna, British Columbia, Canada: 132
6. Regina, Saskatchewan, Canada: 122
7. Los Angeles, California: 114
8. Bolton, England: 112
9. Somerset, England: 111
10. Bennington, Vermont: 111

I love this town.

Here is some video. The first is from an elevated walkway so you can see more zombies; the second a view from the ground in which you can see the dancing better.

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Thrill the World

This afternoon, Jason and I went down to the Long Center to take in Thrill the World, an event where people in cities around the world gather dressed as zombies to perform the Michael Jackson Thriller dance simultaneously. Really.

Not knowing what to expect, we wandered up to the outdoor plaza to watch 881 zombies doing an admirably respectable job of the complicated dance. It was a little eerie, but all in all: awesome.

Just because

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Pictures from California

I finally got the pictures off of my camera from my Berkeley trip and thought I would share. I had a great time with Doug and Kristen and hope to be able to go back next year (preferably this time with Ryan in tow).

Doug and Kristen in Fisherman's Wharf with a giant crab

Forbes Island - the floating restaurant. Do not recommend if you are prone to seasickness.

Statue on Forbes Island. It was kind of a strange place....

We went to Kristen's office where she does the lawyering....

...and helped her with the availability board

We finally made it to Alcatraz on Saturday

This was about the same size as Doug's room in our old house

Cheese pretzel on the return boat from Alcatraz. Kristen chose....poorly

Doug's kitty, Digger

If you are at all interested you can find the rest of the pictures here.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Two things that made me happy today

1. Finding an upside to dialysis:

Getting out of jury duty. Yay!

2. Standing in the line that was stretching out the door for the 10 voting booths set up for early voting at Randall's.

This thing is almost over. Just 2 more weeks....

Friday, October 17, 2008

Hi from Berkeley

Kristen was nice enough to let me borrow her computer, so I thought I'd say hi. Hi!

The trip so far has been great - weather beautiful. I'd try to get Ryan to move here if it weren't so damn expensive and if we hadn't just had the floors done. (I keed. I love Austin, too)

Wednesday night we walked (Yes walked! With our legs!) down to a yummy Thai restaurant. Yesterday morning Doug and I (Kristen had to be in court for the morning) went to breakfast and after consuming a fresh out of the oven almond danish, some bacon, and a mocha, I nearly slipped into a food coma. After that we drove up to Tilden Park to take in the sunshine and beautiful views.

We had tickets to go see Alcatraz at 4, so when Kristen got home we took off around 2, thinking that would give us plenty of time. There are many great things about mass transit, but one unfortunate aspect is unreliability. After taking the BART across to San Francisco, our plan was to catch a cable car down to the wharf to catch our ferry, but the cable cars were not running yesterday so we waited for a bus instead. And waited. And waited.

And waited.

We were proud of ourselves after getting dumped off at the last stop and practically running the 6 remaining blocks to the dock to have made it at 4:00 on the dot. Until we saw our ferry sailing off into the bay. So no Alcatraz for us yesterday but we may try again Saturday.


Instead we visited Coit Tower and moved up our dinner reservation at floating restaurant Forbes Island to 6. After dinner (which was awesome) we climed the floating lighthouse and observed the barking sea lions and took in the incredible view.

Sea lions at Fisherman's Wharf from Doug on Vimeo.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Sorry for lack of posts

Hey guys, sorry I haven't been posting. The renovations downstairs have kept me away from my computer and unfortunately that trend is going to continue until next week. Today is a busy day with movers coming, an afternoon dialysis session pushed up from Wednesday morning, and some packing. Tomorrow I take off to visit the Dug and Kristen and their cats, Digger and Dixie in Berkeley, CA. I'm hoping to actually SEE Dixie this time and that she doesn't spend the entire 5 days under Doug's bed.

Also just wanted to wish my absolute best to Shannon and Erica. I wish I lived closer to Houston. Love you guys and I'll be thinking of you!

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Weirdness, Day 3

The floor guys are still here doing their thing.

They are finished with the staining and scoring and are going to be working on sealing today. Tomorrow they paint the walls, so I hope we can agree on paint colors before then.

Floors in progress

Yesterday after dialysis I was planning on staying holed up in the bedroom with Jeff the Cat until around 1:30 when they started scoring the cement. I don't know if you've ever smelled cement dust, but it's nauseatingly suffocating.

I had to flee.

After opening a window for Jeff the Cat and wishing him the best of luck, I headed off to my parents new house in San Marcos where they were preparing for today's arrival of furniture and boxes. And so begins what is sure to be a tradition of pop-ins. Here's how it goes:

Me calling mom, IN the car on the way to their house:
"What are you all up to?"

Mom: "Not much"

Me: "Are you at home?"

Mom: "Yes"

Me: "I'm coming over."

Later that afternoon...

Me: "So.....what are you doing for dinner?"

Mom: "I'm making it"

Me: "Is there enough for me?"

Classy. But thanks, Mom and Dad, for providing me refuge from the fumes and feeding me fresh veggies. What are we having tonight?

Tuesday, October 7, 2008


The floor guys are not messing around.

They were scheduled to start this morning between 8 and 8:30, so I wandered off to Starbucks to gather some pastries and coffee for Ryan and myself. The clock on my car dash read "8:01" as I rounded the corner of Campfield Parkway (our street) and not only was the Mystic Illusions van parked out front, but every inch of our front room carpet was already stacked on the porch.

So now we are prisoners of the second floor along side Jeff the Cat, who is loving this. He never gets his 'people' to himself without some big smelly dogs shoving him out of the way. Now he has two warm people with two warm laptops camped out on his bed. I have the feeling he's going to be spending much of his time inverted between the two of us today.

Mel and Lucy are hanging out at cousin Cassidy's today. Apparently, in true Steans dogs style, they refused to go out this morning, so we'll have to make a mid-day voyage over to Hop-a-Long Lounge to see what their problem is.

In other news, my parents are making their final journey to their home in San Marcos today. Have a safe trip, Mom and Dad, Sam and Pippin. We'll see you when you get here.

Sunday, October 5, 2008

Disappointment, thy name is Cubs

The Chicago Cubs. It's been 63 years since they went to the World Series and 100 years exactly since they won. They've made a good run of it in recent years, though usually by looking promising in the first half of the season and flaming out like Snoopy's WWI Sopwith Camel as they neared the playoffs. The few times they have made it into the playoffs things didn't go so well.

I think this poor schmo is now under federal protection

My heart goes out to my dad this morning. He was born and raised in northern Chicago and I don't know if the man has missed listening to or watching a Cubs game in his life. (That's a bit of an exaggeration, but you get the idea). Every year the beginning of the season brings a new wave of optimism for him, even though he's perfectly aware of the likelihood of self destruction. This year his hope was high, and with good reason. They started strong and finished strong, with the best record in the National League. Their 100 years of shame was finally behind them.

And then they started the playoffs.

Three games. Three games was all it took to crush the hopes of loyal Cubs fans everywhere.

Sorry, Dad. How 'bout them Cowboys?

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Crazy week

Next week should be interesting. We're having our downstairs redone -- trading our cheap, crappy linoleum and dirty, pet stained carpets for stained and scored cement. We're also having the walls painted. I'm excited about this transformation, but the logistics are not simple. Right now we're in the process of slowly moving all non furniture items upstairs. The movers are coming Monday morning to transfer all of our furniture, Tetris style, into the garage.

Because the downstairs will be off limits for the week, we'll have to relocate ourselves and the pets. Jeff the Cat will be jailed upstairs in the master bedroom, while the rest of us may be camped out at Hop-a-Long Lounge with Jason and Cassidy.

Also next week: my parents are making their official move from Oklahoma to San Marcos. My mom says packing is going relatively smoothly, perhaps eased by their carting of Ford Escape Hybrid-loads of items down during the past year.

I hope they have room for their kitties with the next load

I'm looking forward to having them nearby. It will be great to be able to pop over for dinner or breakfast on the weekends and Christmas will be much simpler as well. Much better than only being able to see them a handful of times a year.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Thanks, everyone

Just wanted to say thanks to everyone for their good wishes, especially after the childish rant I just posted. Honestly it felt good to get it out of my system and I appreciate you bearing with me. Your words of encouragement mean the world to me. Love you guys!!

The past 32 hours


7:30 am: Go to dialysis.

11:20 am: Leave dialysis. Need to make a quick turnaround after getting home so I can be at the hospital at noon. Stop at stoplight at Manchaca and William Cannon. Feel something drip on leg and realize one of my dialysis sites on my arm has started bleeding again. A lot. Let some obscenities fly and drive the rest of the way home left handed with my right hand clamped down as hard as humanly possible on the leak. Thank my lucky stars Ryan is at home and have him help clean me and my car.

11:50 am: My parents shuttle me to the hospital.

1:30 pm: Stare in awe at the IV the anesthesiologist has managed to start in one try - a feat not accomplished by anyone else in the last 3 years.

2:00 pm: Waiting

3:00 pm: More waiting

3:30 pm: Dr's office calls to inform me that my doctor is running 3 hours late and would I mind if another doctor did the procedure. Are they kidding? At this point I'd let Dr. Nick do it if it would speed things up.

Hi, everybuddy!

4:00 pm: A nurse takes a sharpie and inexplicably draws an 'X' on each of my feet. For reals.

4:30 pm: My new best friend the anesthesiologist gives me some happy medicine.

5:00 pm: Wake up. Try to focus on electrophysiologist as he tells me not only were they able to induce an irregular heartbeat, but they had to shock me to get it back into rhythm. Signs point to me needing a defibrillator. CRAP.

5:30 pm: Get moved to a private room. Will have to spend the next 4 hours lying flat on my back to help stop the bleeding where they put the needle in my leg. Become unfairly cranky with everyone. Not sure at this point if I'm more upset about needing a defibrillator or the knowledge that my back will be killing me in 3 hours.

8:30 pm: My back is killing me.

9:00 pm: Time to go. Yay! Take a walk with the nurse up and down the hall to make sure bleeding has stopped before they let me go home. 10 feet from finishing my walk the site starts bleeding. A lot.

9:10 pm: Ryan says he really needs to be home by 10 to get ready for his business trip to New York on Tuesday.

9:15 pm: After calling the doctor, the nurse tells me I'll have to stay another 2 hours. Ryan selflessly assures me it's ok - he can stay with me and bring me home at 11.

9:30 pm: Nurse instructs me not to take a shower or remove the pressure bandage for 24 hours. Yuck.

11:30 pm: We finally get home. Ryan starts packing and printing travel documents. I am starving -- time has slowed to a crawl and I feel like it takes me 15 minutes to construct my peanut butter sandwich.

12:30 pm: Finally flop into bed.


7:15 am: Wake up, feed dogs, feed self, clean self up as best as possible, say goodbye to Ryan.

8:30 am: Cardiologist appointment. Am comforted by the fact that my cardiologist and I seem to be on the same page. He sympathizes with my difficult choice about the defibrillator and schedules yet another test to help me with my decision.

9:30 am: Driving home from my appointment, I realize I have forgotten to ask cardiologist about a change in medication suggested by the migraine specialist I saw in Houston a week ago. CRAP.

11:00 am: Want to sleep so badly.

12:00 pm: Hop in car to voyage to north Austin to see a new doctor, an endocrinologist, about my severe osteoporosis. Am mainly seeing her to humor my OBGYN who was not pleased with my last bone density test.

Too. Many. Doctors.

1:30 pm: Meet new doctor for a grand total of 10 minutes. She's obviously a big cheese and doesn't have time for my usual protesting. Orders more bloodwork and wants me to come back twice in the next 2 weeks for appointments and more tests. Oh, AND wants me to bring the results from my last bone scan, which.....WHY can't they call up my doctor's office and get it from them??

2:30 pm: Drive home seething. I am not a happy camper.

2:45 pm: Come to the conclusion that 70% of my anger is stemming from my lack of sleep and the world is not against me. Tell self to suck it up.

Currently: Counting the minutes until I can jump into my hot shower.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Cardio testing

I mentioned a while back that I would have to have testing at some point to see if I needed a defibrillator. The time is finally here and I'm going in tomorrow afternoon for my procedure. To be perfectly honest, I'm more than a little uneasy. Not about the procedure, but about the results. I'm still not comfortable with the idea of having a big piece of metal shoved into my chest and honestly I don't know if I'll do it even if it's recommended. That may seem like a foolish choice and maybe it is, but this is a huge lifestyle change and it makes me uneasy. We'll see.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Fall TV is back

Ah, the bleak summer days without scripted television are drawing to a close (although I do have to send a high five to ABC Family for bringing us fresh programming in the form of The Middleman). No longer are we left to choose between reality shows, reruns, and the Netflix DVDs which have been gathering dust for a month. Slowly our DVR is showing new signs of life, the red light appearing more frequently, replenishing its stash of brand spanking new tv shows. Here's what's currently on my set list:


Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles. I really dig this show, despite being skeptical after viewing the pilot last year. Could they possibly sustain the suspense of an action movie and any semblance of a plot? Yep. Oh, and by the way? Yes that is Brian Austin "You're so Precious to Me" Green. He's actually pretty good in this.

The Big Bang Theory. We watch mainly because of Steans family friend Jim Parsons, but it's also quite entertaining.

Heroes. I'm giving it one more chance to atone for the atrocity that was Season 2


90210. I know - I should be ashamed of myself for recording anything on the CW. I honestly wanted to see what they'd do with Brenda and Kelly more than anything, but unless they start making the new kids less boring real fast? I'm out.


Mythbusters. I watch because they blow stuff up and not at all because Grant Imahara is adorable. Ahem.

Project Runway. They are churning these suckers out this year faster than you can say 'catchphrase'. The current underwhelming season's only saving grace is mentor Tim Gunn ("It looks like it's a pterodactyl out of a gay Jurassic Park") so I'm hoping they've chosen a more interesting group of contestants for season 6.


30 Rock. I'm eagerly awaiting the return of Ludichristmas.

The Office. I'm not a fan of the hour long eps they keep insisting on running, but it's still 100% funnier than According to Jim. But then again, so is Jeff the Cat.

Try to have some semblance of a real life.


X-Files on Sci-Fi. After viewing the question mark this summer that was I Want To Believe Chris Carter will not make a disappointing movie, I realized I'd never seen the early seasons of X-Files. They're currently rerunning Season 1 and the outfits are HI-larious.

Football games. Tony Romo wants a time out to take another vacation with Jessica.

In conclusion:

I watch entirely too much tv.

Edited to add:
I completely forgot about It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia, which returned last night, soooooo there's another one.

"Wild Card!! Yeeeeeeee-Haaaaaaaaw!!"

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Props to Apple

Oh, happy day.

I was up in my office this morning, sorting through neglected files, enjoying a mocha and monitoring the fluctuating canine/feline hostility level out on my sunny balcony when I heard the rumblings of a FedEx truck pulling up outside the house. With a squeal usually reserved for kittens at PetSmart, I jumped up and flew down the stairs. Could it possibly be my MacBook, returning to me after just 4 days?

Seriously. I just dropped the thing off at the "Genius Bar" (Really, Apple? Could you be any more pretentious?) on Friday. That's like 2 business days. And they sent the thing to Tennessee for repair.

Anyway, color me impressed, and it's more than a little sad how thrilled I am to have my computer back.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

MacBook Withdrawal: Day One/ Hurricane Ike

Yesterday I took my MacBook to the Apple store, flopped it on the counter and instructed, "fix it". They estimate it will be out of my possession anywhere from 3 to 10 days. I may need help.

As you can see, I have not made it even 24 hours before hijacking Ryan's computer. Last night my eye started twitching, and I have taken to flipping channels to monitor the hurricane that they estimate will now completely bypass us.

Speaking of the hurricane, it looks like it has hit Houston hard. My thoughts are with those hunkering down in Houston including the Admiral, Shannon, Josh, and little Owen, and Bug, Scott, and little Bug. Keep safe, everyone!

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Reunion Recap

So I'm back from my high school reunion weekend. Yes I've been back since Sunday, but I needed a few of days to recover and flew to Houston today for an appointment. I'm also incredibly lazy.

I can sum up the weekend by saying it was at the same time overwhelming and a lot of fun. I also discovered I have some blog readers I didn't know about and may have some new ones thanks to the reunion. Hi guys! It was great seeing you! Julie, or Juliana if that is your real name, I'm sorry if my blog material fails to live up to the awesome play we wrote in 6th grade. I don't have my talented writing partner to help me.

My best friend from way back when, Rebecca, was nice enough to fly into Austin Wednesday. We spent a couple of days catching up and then drove up to Lawton together Friday morning. I got to meet her husband Juan (we'd met once before but very briefly), who we picked up from the Lawton airport, and see her parents and brother Philip. It was so great to see them again and spend some time in their house where I spent so much time while growing up.

Friday night we met up before the game at our friend Lori's parents' house - thanks to Lori and her folks for hosting us! This is where the majority of squealing and hugging occurred. But Kyle soon settled down.

Christy is not at all trying to compensate for her 'bad shoe choice'. Her words, not mine.

Kevin and Chet, estimating just how hungover Kevin will be in the morning

Catherine, Rebecca, Kristi, me, and Elizabeth, hoping this night will bear no resemblance to the slumber party I had when I turned 10. We're off to a good start with 100% less 'Material Girl'.

Me, Julie, Elizabeth, and Daniel. Daniel, currently residing in Kuwait, wins the prize for most ridiculous distance traveled.

Aaaaaaaaand we lost. Again.

I'm a little disappointed as I thought I took more pictures than I ended up with. Luckily there were about 50 other cameras so our bases were covered.

I went to high school with a great group of people, and even though we were forced together then based on mutual zip codes, we genuinely still like each other and continue to be friends by choice in the real world. It was comforting to me to see how well everyone is doing. We've scattered around the country from D.C. to L.A. and have attorneys, TV editors, political lobbyists, and medical researchers among us. We've built families and have children (or dogs). The highlight of the weekend for me was watching the smiles on my friends' faces as they told of their child's upcoming first birthday or relayed how they met their significant others.

Let's not let another 15 years pass us by - who's up for next year?

I leave you with the quote of the weekend from one of my favorite teachers when asked how he still enjoyed teaching:
"The kids are all a**holes".