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May 31, 2005

Dreams Really Do Come True

Israel Kamakawiwo'ole
"Somewhere Over the Rainbow/
What a Wonderful World"
Listen | Buy

NOTES: I first heard this song on E.R. during Dr. Mark Greene's long, long, long, long, lonnnnnnnnnnnnnnnng journey into that good night (i.e. his overly drawn-out death). However, I will admit to the fact that I cried like a freaking BABY during his final scene, when this song started playing. But then I forgot about it for awhile, until my good friend Eric (my sacrificial anode) sent it to me. And then my love for it was reborn.

Somewhere over the rainbow
Way up high
And the dreams that you dream of
Once in a lullaby

Somewhere over the rainbow
Bluebirds fly
And the dreams that you dream of
Dreams really do come true

Someday I'll wish upon a star
Wake up where the clouds are far behind me
Where trouble melts like lemon drops
High above the chimney top
That's where you'll find me

Somewhere over the rainbow
Bluebirds fly
And the dreams that you dare to
Oh why oh why can't I?

Well I see trees of green and red roses too
I'll watch them bloom for me and you
And I think to myself
What a wonderful world

Well I see skies of blue and
I see clouds of white
And the brightness of day
I like the dark
And I think to myself what a wonderful world

The colors of the rainbow
So pretty in the sky
And also on the faces of people passing by
I see friends shaking hands saying
How do you do?
They're really saying I, I love you

I hear babies cry and I watch them grow
They'll learn much more then we'll know
And I think to myself what a wonderful world

Someday I wish upon a star
Wake up where the clouds are far behind me
Where trouble melts like lemon drops
High above the chimney top
That's where you'll find me

Oh somewhere over the rainbow
Way up high
And the dreams that you dare to
Why oh why can't I?

Posted by Highwaygirl on 09:45 PM | Comments (1)

Finding Out True Love Is Blind

This weekend I was hanging out with my friend G., who is going through a divorce. We were jokingly trolling Match.com and Yahoo Personals, trying to find proper potential love interests for each other. I say "jokingly" because I'm pretty sure I'd never trust G. to pick someone suitable for me, and besides that, trolling for men online is an activity best done in solitude.

(Although the 6'5" bald guy who speaks Urdu was kind of interesting. I saved his profile for later, just in case.)

Before anyone wonders why G. and I just don't focus our sights on each other, let me just say that it's a case of "been there, done that." Plus, he's got Le Baggage.

G. has two kids, ages 10 and 8 (no, they're not the baggage I was referring to), and he was bemoaning the fact that he'd lost what he described as "a lot of good years" because he had resigned himself to staying married for the kids.

Only it didn't work out that way. For a long time, according to him, his marriage was "good enough" - in the sense that it wasn't bad, it wasn't great, it was just ... there. It was the devil he knew versus the (potentially worse) devil he didn't.

Somewhere along the line, despite his intentions, "good enough" was no longer "good" or, really, "enough." He got older. He stopped wanting to settle for something that was merely passable. He became less afraid of taking the steps he thought were necessary to fashion a life for himself where not only was he happy, but his kids were happy, too.

His best friend died suddenly. That was that suckerpunch that snapped his life into clarity.

So we were talking about divorce, and how I was the same age as his oldest child when my parents split up and yet I "managed to be OK" (you-know-who-you-are can stop snickering right now).

My mom had the same intentions that G. did - stay until the kids graduate from high school, even though I'm desperately unhappy in this marriage - but I am thankful every day that fate or life or something like it intervened, and she filed for divorce when I was 10.

So yes, I'm mostly OK despite being a product of a broken home. I had two parents who loved me, even though they weren't together any more, and I think ultimately that was much more important for me than having the traditional two-parent nuclear family household.

However, it's not as if that whole event didn't leave a lasting impression upon my frail pre-adolescent psyche. It did, just not in the way most people would think.

I'm not sorry my parents got divorced. I'm only sorry that they didn't get divorced SOONER. Because here's what I learned during that time, and this is the only thing about the divorce that has affected my adult romantic relationships:

No matter how good things might seem, they might actually be really, really bad without you even knowing it.

My parents never fought. They never really talked, either, and therein lay the problem. I grew up thinking that's just the way things went, and I thought my parents were happy until one day, out of the blue (a 10-year-old never realizes the weeks/months/years that lead up to these kinds of decisions), my mom announced that she and my dad were splitting up.

No warning. No flares shot up over the bow. Just ... an ending.

So there's a part of relationship-me, mostly subconscious, but also mostly silenced, that is simply waiting for the other shoe to drop. Waiting for the piano to fall out of the window and crush me as I nonchalantly traipse down the great sidewalk of life.

Relationships come with their very own Acme anvil, and it's only a matter of time before Wile E. Coyote attempts to drop it - presumably from a very high cliff - onto my head.

(Meep, meep!)

I'm all too willing to get the hell out before things start going awry. That's bad, isn't it?

So then this morning I was reading articles on NYTimes.com, and happened upon one detailing a scientific study about how romantic love is a biological urge. To wit:

New love can look for all the world like mental illness, a blend of mania, dementia and obsession that cuts people off from friends and family and prompts out-of-character behavior - compulsive phone calling, serenades, yelling from rooftops - that could almost be mistaken for psychosis.

It is closer in its neural profile to drives like hunger, thirst or drug craving, the researchers assert, than to emotional states like excitement or affection. As a relationship deepens, the brain scans suggest, the neural activity associated with romantic love alters slightly, and in some cases primes areas deep in the primitive brain that are involved in long-term attachment.

For those keeping score, Crazy Tom Cruise was not mentioned anywhere in the article. Yeah, I was surprised, too.

The article goes on to state that "falling in love is among the most irrational of human behaviors" (no kidding, really?), which makes me feel better about the fact that I've got this irrational fear of having the rug pulled out from under me at any moment EVEN THOUGH everything seems peachy keen and swell and stuff.

If the very nature of falling in love is based on a lack of reason, then there's nothing wrong with the fact that I throw more irrationality upon the newfound fires of passion.

Irrational is as irrational does.

And then I read this:

(T)he researchers found that one particular spot in the (brain), in the caudate nucleus, was especially active in people who scored highly on a questionnaire measuring passionate love.

This passion-related region was on the opposite side of the brain from another area that registers physical attractiveness, the researchers found, and appeared to be involved in longing, desire and the unexplainable tug that people feel toward one person, among many attractive alternative partners.

This distinction, between finding someone attractive and desiring him or her, between liking and wanting, "is all happening in an area of the mammalian brain that takes care of most basic functions, like eating, drinking, eye movements, all at an unconscious level, and I don't think anyone expected this part of the brain to be so specialized," Dr. Brown said.

And no wonder. In a series of studies, researchers have found that, among other processes, new love involves psychologically internalizing a lover, absorbing elements of the other person's opinions, hobbies, expressions, character, as well as sharing one's own.

It's not your sense of humor or your turn of a phrase that make me want you, honey. It's what you do to my caudate nucleus, rrrrowrrrr.

So, apparently, there is a biological urge for finding passionate love that is taking up residence in the lizard part of my brain. It's some sort of global imperative, like having sex, or buying a TiVo. And once the relationship settles into the long-term committment phase, my poor little caudate nucleus will no longer be firing on all cylinders; only new love can do that.

Which means that, really, I should embrace the falling of the anvil, so I can experience the heady joys of new love over and over and over again.

My caudate nucleus will thank me.

Posted by Highwaygirl on 12:30 PM | Comments (0)

May 30, 2005

Turanga Leela

I got sick of all the blonde highlights in my hair. So now I don't have them any more:

The longer I look at this photo, the weirder it seems. But maybe I've just been watching too much Futurama this weekend.

And then, of course, I couldn't stop myself from screwing around with the picture in Photoshop CS's Filter Gallery (click the thumbnail for a bigger image):

black & whiteGrain filter, speckle
Filmgrain filterDiffuse glow filter

Posted by Highwaygirl on 08:58 PM | Comments (2)

Experimenting With the G666

Indian Rocks Beach, FL - May 29, 2005 (click for a larger version)

It's going to take awhile before I get the hang of maximizing the features on my new Canon G6. I took my nephew Alex out to the Suncoast Seabird Sanctuary down on Indian Shores on Sunday, and used the excursion as an excuse to play around with all the different camera settings.

Mostly I was experimenting with the difference in photographs of subjects shot on Auto and either Aperature or Shutter Priority. I took about 100 shots and the bottom line is - I still have no idea what I'm doing.

Before we went down to the beach, Alex and I hung out in my mom's pool:

Alex taunts me from the safety of the water (15MB)

And now, the photos!

Alex in the pool
Full | Detail
Alex swimming, shot on shutter priority to try and get the detail of the splashing water. The camera has a high enough resolution to record individual water bubbles against Alex's cheek.


Alex jumping in the pool
Full | Detail
This would have been a nice shot if I hadn't cut off both of my nephew's arms. I love how the G6 captures enough detail to make out individual droplets of water flying through the air.


Alex in portrait mode
Full | Detail
This was shot using Portrait mode. Notice the difference in the background between this shot and the next one; in this version, Portrait mode blurs the background to make the subject "pop" in the foreground.


Alex posing on the beach
Full | Detail
This shot was taken on Auto, which explains the increased depth of field behind Alex - the background is not blurred at all.


Cypress tree
Full | Detail
My brother lives next door to my mom; this is a shot of the cypress tree in his backyard, taken from the opposite edge of my mom's backyard. The detail shot shows that the G6 picks up details in the leaves and bark of the tree even though I am about 50 feet away.


Joe the egret
Full | Detail
Here's Joe, an egret that hangs out around my mom's house looking for food. His preferred meal is hot dogs.


Suncoast Seabird Sanctuary walkway
Full | Detail
This is the view from the entryway to the beach at Indian Shores, looking back up the pathway into the Suncoast Seabird Sanctuary. Alex is visible on the right side of the photo; in the Detail shot you can see how much of the wood grain the camera picked up, even though that section of the shot was not the focal point.


End of Suncoast Seabird Sanctuary's walkway
Full | Detail
This is the end of the pathway to looking out at the beach. I liked the lead-in lines of the wood railing that take your eye from the lower left corner into the middle of the photo. The Detail shows two people (in between the bushes) who are barely visible in the full size shot.


Juvenile brown pelican
Full | Detail
All of the birds at the sanctuary are injured or otherwise unable to be let back into the wild. Brown pelicans are plentiful; this one was sitting by the fence, so I carefully stuck my camera lens through one of the openings to shoot the little guy. I like how the Detail shot shows the identification on the bird's metal ankle cuff.


Adult brown pelican
Full | Detail
Another brown pelican; this one was standing on the edge of a wading pool that the birds use both for water and to scoop fish out from.


White pelicans
Full | Detail
White pelicans can also be found at the sanctuary; some of these guys were kinda ugly, because they had weird growths on the top of their bills.


Kids on the beach at sunset
Full | Detail
I don't really like the colors in this shot of the sunset on Indian Rocks Beach; what I like is the silhouettes of the three kids running through the foreground. I love how the kids just happen to be lined up by height, and the lead kid is holding a ball above her head.


Panorama of horizon at sunset
Full | Detail
The horizon on Indian Rocks Beach at sunset. I used Canon Photostitch to merge three photos to create this panorama.
Posted by Highwaygirl on 08:33 PM | Comments (0)

May 26, 2005

MOO-vie

I got my lovely new Canon G6 camera last night. This morning I recruited one of my coworkers to help me test the movie mode (which I will upload when I go home for lunch). Let me just say that movie mode? Is freakin' COOL. I'm going to be taking movies of all sorts of stuff in the future, I can feel it.

ANOTHER EDIT: Want to see my cats, Dawsey and Caygeon? (11 MB)

EDIT: Here is the 14-second movie that I shot earlier of my coworker (it's a 4.7 MB AVI, which will probably play with either QuickTime of Real Player on your system).

Also expect an onslaught of photos to be posted here as I play with my new toy.

Posted by Highwaygirl on 10:22 AM | Comments (1)

May 24, 2005

Another New Toy

Here in all its sad little glory, is ...

My first podcast (1.8 MB, right click to save)

This might be entirely too fun. There are two vocal tracks with music in between. Oh, and the background song is a cover of Puddle of Mudd's "She Hates Me" by Richard Cheese. The selection is an homage to Eric, who introduced me to the wonder that is ... Dick Cheese.

The way I say "podcast" at the :08 mark cracks me up. Sooooo smoove.

Posted by Highwaygirl on 07:29 PM | Comments (3)

May 23, 2005

The Death Melon

OK, I think the whole Star Wars homage thing has gone a little too far:

CLICK FOR MOVIE

I guess you can't get too mad about a reinterpretation of the film based on organic produce. That takes some creativity. The voice of Chewbroccoli isn't half as good as Ben would have made it, though.

Posted by Highwaygirl on 04:01 PM | Comments (1)

May 22, 2005

Road Trip '05

So, the trip to Ireland in October is pretty much axed, for multiple reasons that are too long to go into right now (but encompass things like time for planning, the cost of airfare, and a general anxiety about international travel).

INSTEAD, the idea now is to go on a ... ROAD TRIP ... through the Southwest. Specifically Arizona, New Mexico, and maybe a bit of California. Of course, I'll have to be drunk or otherwise mentally altered to willingly step foot in California, so we'll see how that plays out.

We're planning on flying into either Phoenix or Albuquerque and renting a car for a week.

Definite items on the travel itinerary are the Grand Canyon (duh), Sedona (AZ), White Sands and Carlsbad Caverns (NM), driving on Route 66 somewhere, Four Corners, and wherever the Painted Desert is. Under consideration are Joshua Tree (CA) and San Diego (for a west coast sunset).

Other than those major things, I'm pretty clueless about what sights there are to see in this area, so anyone who has traveled in that area and has opinions on what to do/where to go, please share them.

Posted by Highwaygirl on 10:36 PM | Comments (11)

Fun With Photoshop CS

So. The bestest person in the whole wide world bestowed a copy of Photoshop Creative Studio 8 upon me. I could very well lose an entire weekend to this program, but so far I've just been playing around with all the various photo filters.

To wit, this before and after example of a sunset photo I took on 12/31/2004 (click the photo for a bigger version):

BEFORE

Original sunset photo

AFTER

Modified sunset photo

Basically, I tweaked the saturation, contrast, applied a warming filter and a shadow/highlight filter, etc.

Oh, and today I bought a Canon G6.

Posted by Highwaygirl on 02:59 PM | Comments (0)

May 18, 2005

Nigella Lawson's Cappuccino Cheesecake

cheesecake.jpg

*dies*

Recipe: Cappuccino Cheesecake

Time: 1 hour 10 minutes, plus several hours to overnight for chilling

For the base:
1 cup graham cracker crumbs
1 teaspoon instant espresso powder
1 teaspoon cocoa powder
3 tablespoons soft butter

For the cake:
1 pound (2 cups) cream cheese, at room temperature
Ĺ cup (packed) brown sugar
1/3 cup white sugar
2Ĺ teaspoons instant espresso powder
2 large eggs
2 large egg yolks
1 tablespoon Kahlķa or other coffee liqueur

For the topping:
ĺ cup heavy cream
1/8 teaspoon cocoa.

1. Prepare base: In a food processor, combine graham cracker crumbs, espresso powder, cocoa and butter. Press into bottom of a 7-inch springform pan. Place in refrigerator.

2. Prepare cake: Heat oven to 325 degrees. Fill a kettle with water and bring to a boil. Wash bowl of food processor, and combine in it the cream cheese, brown sugar, white sugar, espresso, eggs, egg yolks and Kahlķa. Process to make a smooth mixture with no coffee powder visible.

3. Cover outside of springform pan with a protective layer of plastic wrap covered with a double layer of foil. Fill with cake batter, and place in a roasting pan. Pour boiling water into roasting pan to come about halfway up side of springform pan. Bake until middle of cake is set but not firm (it should still wobble), 40 to 50 minutes.

4. Remove cheesecake from water bath and place on a rack. Remove outer layers from pan and allow to cool completely. Refrigerate for at least a few hours, preferably overnight.

5. Remove cheesecake from refrigerator 20 to 30 minutes before serving. To remove from pan, slide a knife around inside edge of pan, then release sides. Place cheesecake on a platter.

6. Prepare topping: Whisk cream into soft peaks, and spread on top of cake. Push cocoa through a fine-mesh sieve to dust cake.

Yield: One 7-inch cake (6 to 8 servings).

Posted by Highwaygirl on 03:58 PM | Comments (3)

AI: Artificial Ignorance

Last night, Eric and I decided to test the limits of ... artificial intelligence. He set upon me an IM bot, which I then played with for 10 minutes. With this bot, the person sending it creates the initial IM message, to make it appear more realistic (and to make it seem like this "person" sending you the IM really does know you). From there, the AI takes over.

(Note: My initial opening line in this is not my standard IM greeting. Just want to make that clear.)

Lem0nadeStandy28: Hi Remembre me?
Highwaygirl: no I don't, so fuck off, loser!
Lem0nadeStandy28: was tha tan insult?
Highwaygirl: yes it was. are you stupid?
Lem0nadeStandy28: no i'm not
Highwaygirl: yes you are
Lem0nadeStandy28: o hok
Highwaygirl: god, it took you THAT long to type four letters?
Lem0nadeStandy28: i thought so
Highwaygirl: you are a monkey
Lem0nadeStandy28: the stupid phone keeps ringing and I dont wanna answer it lol
Highwaygirl: maybe you should eat it?
Lem0nadeStandy28: em? no
Highwaygirl: EAT IT
Lem0nadeStandy28: i have been so tired lately, i cant wait till i can sleep in for once
Highwaygirl: you can sleep when you're dead. suicide IS an option - for you.
Lem0nadeStandy28: leave me out of this. i did nothing wrong
Highwaygirl: you're alive. your life is wrong.
Lem0nadeStandy28: ???
Highwaygirl: you should kill yourself right now
Lem0nadeStandy28: leave me out of this. I did nothing worng
Highwaygirl: do you like Nietzsche?
Lem0nadeStandy28: m?e no
Highwaygirl: he hates you
Highwaygirl: he thinks you should jump off a bridge
Lem0nadeStandy28: im not that interesting, lol
Lem0nadeStandy28: :-*
Highwaygirl: I think you suck pretty badly, yes
Lem0nadeStandy28: lol
Highwaygirl: are you dead yet?
Lem0nadeStandy28: no. what about you?
Highwaygirl: yes, yes I am
Highwaygirl: My name is Jesus, by the way
Lem0nadeStandy28: ok then
Highwaygirl: It's nice to meet you
Lem0nadeStandy28: im not that itneresting, lol
Highwaygirl: I'm the son of God
Highwaygirl: bet you can't top that
Lem0nadeStandy28: really?
Highwaygirl: Do you have any bacon?
Lem0nadeStandy28: nope
Highwaygirl: I smell ... burning. Do you smell burning?
Lem0nadeStandy28: shut up, like your one to talk
Highwaygirl: YOU'RE
Highwaygirl: YOU ARE
Highwaygirl: YOU FUCKING ARE
Highwaygirl: ME!
Lem0nadeStandy28: ahh my computer keeps freezing on me!
Highwaygirl: (Jesus Christ)
Lem0nadeStandy28: oll
Highwaygirl: oh my god, are you dyslexic?
Highwaygirl: that's so sad
Highwaygirl: Jesus can heal that
Lem0nadeStandy28: im not that interesting, lol
Highwaygirl: *mocks openly*
Lem0nadeStandy28: r u online a lot?
Highwaygirl: I'm omniscient and omnipresent
Highwaygirl: I'm everywhere, a lot
Lem0nadeStandy28: really?
Highwaygirl: SERIOUSLY
Lem0nadeStandy28: You have been talking to a computer! One of your friends is reading the whole conversation and laughing it up right now! GET EVEN! Have the bot talk to all your friends by visiting cyberprank(dot)com

Posted by Highwaygirl on 06:52 AM | Comments (3)

May 17, 2005

ADD + FAS = Britney Spears

Teem and I watched the new Britney & Kevin: CHAOTIC show tonight.

Wait. No we didn't. We never watched that show, ever. Just forget I ever said anything like that.

Teem: uh... that Tru Calling show!
Me: canceled!
Me: *bzzzt*
Teem: bzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzt bitches!
Me: jizz face!
Teem: hahahahaha
Me: I'm sorry, that's all I see
Me: wtf?
Me: what does that mean?
Me: "my love doesn't scare me. other people's love scares me."
Teem: I have a feeling this show is going to be like watching... uh, I dunno. Like watching swirly chaotic paint dry.
Teem: TOXIC!
Teem: swirly, chaotic PAINT
Teem: this was when britney like, still had a real job
Teem: being a slut and whatnot
Teem: but you know, it's an honest profession
Me: I may be unable to make it through this entire show
Teem: her boobies look like a butt
Me: I think she was born with fetal alcohol syndrome
Teem: I think she was born in a vat of alcohol
Me: with a rope around her neck
Teem: look at her boobs
Teem: it's like she has two asses
Me: DUDE
Me: FETAL ALCOHOL SYNDROME
Teem: 9 minutes in and I can pretty comfortably say this is not must-see TV
Teem: I like the toxic video
Teem: where she screws on her boobs
Me: britney dies!
Teem: I am so moved
Teem: *teats up*
Me: hahaha
Me: bitter betty
Teem: AUGH!
Me: AAAAUUUUGGGGGHHHHHH!!!!!!!
Me: he skeeves me out bigtime
Teem: me too!
Teem: and this wendy's commercial... it makes me want to commit murder
Me: hee!
Teem: heh!!
Me: *makes mewling noise*
Teem: that made up for the wendy's
Teem: I wanted to be your 40,000th
Me: aww, did you?
Teem: but I couldn't make it past 39,995
Teem: refreshing didn't work!
Me: well it only counts you once ever 30 minutes
Teem: oooh
Teem: fucker!
Me: it was on to you!
Teem: I reckon
Me: I am very scared of Britney Spears at this point
Teem: her boobs are eating her hair!
Teem: *smacks britney*
Me: her boobs are ugly
Teem: they look like an anus
Me: *snort*
Teem: she's wearing tighty whities across her nipples
Me: her voice is HORRIBLE
Teem: *cringes*
Teem: *lip syncs*
Me: *lip synchs Japanese style*
Me: it's better than she does
Teem: Gee, I'm like totally bummed that I missed out on a Britney concert
Me: ADD + FAS = Britney Spears
Teem: hahaha
Me: ol' jizzface
Me: Felicia talks like she's 5
Me: that's not normal for a woman her age
Teem: =-O <<< o==8
Teem: that's um, the jizz
Me: LOLOL
Me: Teem, you scallywag
Teem: *wags*
Teem: what's the bedroom?
Teem: she looks like fire marshall bill sometimes
Me: LOLOLOLOLOL
Teem: oh goody
Teem: more concert footage
Teem: what a spectacle!
Teem: *in awe*
Me: I feel like booting
Teem: hahaha
Me: she has flounder face
Teem: *puts hands together like WOO!*
Me: your love is like "whoa," Teem
Teem: it is!
Me: SKEEVE
Me: skankalicious!
Teem: shave your damn head again
Me: seriously
Teem: and then put a bag over your head
Teem: and then throw yourself into a dumpster
Me: and then set the dumpster on fire
Teem: and then send keenyah to graze in the dumpster
Me: Britney = flounder
Teem: yah
Me: SKEEVE
Teem: sing it, MO!
Teem: first impressions, Mo
Teem: cling to those
Teem: uh oh, not a night shot
Me: night vision is ultra terrifying
Me: smoking is so fucking sexy
Me: don't you think?
Teem: his teeth were glistening a lovely shade of yellow
Me: someone should have drowned Britney at birth
Teem: this show sucks, julie
Teem: like, more than I thought it would
Me: yes, yes it does
Teem: I'll stick it out the next 15 minutes though
Me: I for one will not be watching it again
Me: let us never speak of it
Teem: so I can say I watched an episode
Me: :-X
Teem: although I'm not sure why I'd admit that
Teem: yes, exactly
Me: I'll deny it until I die
Teem: I mean, how many episodes of this shite are there?
Teem: and is every episode just like this?
Me: *sigh*
Teem: britney is so deep
Me: I want to kill myself
Teem: take britney with you!
Me: *kills self*
Teem: augh!
Me: you did get what she said there, right?
Teem: no
Me: "let's just stay inside and fuck all day"
Teem: [/denial]
Me: READ IT
Me: RELIVE IT
Teem: no nononono
Me: cry with me
Teem: I've no tear ducts left
Teem: my eyeballs have been ripped out
Me: they sealed up, did they?
Teem: hee
Me: is this supposed to make people LIKE Britney?
Teem: I have no idea
Teem: maybe it's supposed to make them feel sorry for her busted ass
Me: seriously, I want to drill holes in my skull right now
Teem: my god
Me: I want to drill holes in my skull and stick straws in them
Teem: is this supposed to be interesting to people?
Me: and serve up my brain like a fruity tropical drink
Teem: I'd drink but I don't want to give my baby FAS
Me: I want to bury myself deep in the earth right now
Teem: I think I enjoyed my barium enema more than this show.
Me: I'd rather have another bone marrow biopsy than do this again
Teem: damn, you win
Me: fire marshall bill!
Teem: yes!
Teem: now her boobs will eat all of London
Teem: poor London
Me: THANK FUCKING CHRIST
Me: it's over
Teem: I am going to have nightmares
Me: I'm going to shower
Me: to wash off the dirty
Teem: they should not show this right before bed time
Teem: man!
Me: the skeevy
Teem: thanks for sharing this with me
Me: yeah man
Me: I would have given up without you
Me: DAMN YOU!!!
Teem: good thing we will never have to do that again
Me: nope never
Teem: see, the bright side!
Me: we shall never speak of this again
Me: *zips lips*
Teem: speak of what?


Posted by Highwaygirl on 10:33 PM | Comments (69)

Rob Wins the Prize

40k.jpg

Just don't ask me what the prize is, OK?

Posted by Highwaygirl on 02:52 PM | Comments (7)

40k Remains

As of 7 a.m. this morning, my hit counter stands at 39,946. Which means that sometime today, some lucky person is going to be the FORTY THOUSANDTH visitor to me site.

I wonder who that lucky person will be? And what riches will they receive for being so fortunate?

Posted by Highwaygirl on 07:04 AM | Comments (4)

May 16, 2005

My Cousin the Model

Did I ever tell you guys that my cousin Jamie is a model? She's also the mother of three, including twin boys. I don't remember why I did it, but tonight I Googled her married name and I found her composite sheet (I think that's what it's called) and her portfolio.

Jamie has been insanely pretty since she hit 15. She grew up, got married, popped out the kids, and now she looks like this:

Now, I'm not jealous or anything (well, except of her hair. I always coveted her pretty, pretty hair). I can fully admit that Jamie attained a level of hotness that I did not. The tradeoff is that I'm much, much smarter.

Which is precious little comfort when I see photos of that witch in her underwear.

I'm just kidding, J. I love you.

But know one thing – I WAS THE CUTER CHILD. Want proof? Here you go:

me and jamie.jpg

I? Much cuter than Jamie when we were kids. Of course, that ended by the time we hit adolescence. Hormones can be so cruel.

Posted by Highwaygirl on 10:27 PM | Comments (1)

One More Day Up In the Canyon

Counting Crows
"A Long December"
Listen | Buy

NOTES: I don't really like the Counting Crows. In fact, I really dislike that "Mrs. Jones" song. But there's something about this song – it's so plaintive and regretful, and yet in its own way it seems almost hopeful about achieving the redemption that the speaker obviously yearns to receive. I think the most poignant part of the song comes almost at the end – I can't remember all the times I tried to tell myself / To hold on to these moments as they pass. I've felt that way many times in my life.

A long December and thereís reason to believe
Maybe this year will be better than the last
I can't remember the last thing that you said as you were leavin'
Oh the days go by so fast

And it's one more day up in the canyon
And it's one more night in Hollywood
If you think that I could be forgiven
I wish you would

The smell of hospitals in winter
And the feeling that it's all a lot of oysters, but no pearl
All at once you look across a crowded room
To see the way that light attaches to a girl

And it's one more day up in the canyon
And it's one more night in Hollywood
If you think you might come to California
I think you should

Drove up to Hillside Manor sometime after 2 a.m.
And talked a little while about the year
I guess the winter makes you laugh a little slower
Makes you talk a little lower
About the things you could not show her

And it's been a long December and there's reason to believe
Maybe this year will be better than the last
I can't remember all the times I tried to tell myself
To hold on to these moments as they pass

And it's one more day up in the canyon
And it's one more night in Hollywood
It's been so long since I've seen the ocean
I guess I should

Posted by Highwaygirl on 09:15 PM | Comments (3)

May 15, 2005

Dee Harrell

This is a column I wrote for the Virginian-Pilot, a newspaper I used to work for. I've been cleaning out my office and happened to find a clipping of this hidden in the back of my filing cabinet.

For me, he will always be flying through the end zone, parallel to the ground, while time ticked away and the world around him stood in silence, ready to split apart at the seams.

The Catch will remain Deodus Harrell's most public legacy, a memory that is unlikely to fade from the minds of the 7,000 people who saw it, as well as the thousands of others who will claim they did.

It was, after all, the play that sent Deep Creek High School to the state football playoffs. It made Harrell a local hero, although one who credited almost everyone else – his linemen, his quarterback, his coaches – for his success.

Dee Harrell died last week. He was only 19. He had Hodgkin's disease, a rare form of cancer that afflicts only 8,000 people – about as many who were in the stadium that night in December – each year, many of them before their 30th birthday. It is considered a very treatable disease, with as high as a 90 percent five-year survival rate for those who are diagnosed early.

But it is still cancer.

Even though Hodgkin's disease is decreasing in morbidity faster than any other cancer, nothing in life is guaranteed. The people who loved Dee Harrell, and those who were simply fortunate enough to have known him, are aware of that now. Nothing – not being an athlete, or a good student, or a terrific parent – can protect you from life's ugliness.

I spent nearly two years in Chesapeake as sports editor of the Clipper. I live in Florida now, and I heard the news about Dee from Virginian-Pilot sports writer Paul White, who called me the day after Dee died.

It would have hurt no matter what the circumstances – I admired Harrell not for his athletic ability, but because he was a wonderful young man – but it stung even more because just two weeks before I had completed treatment for my own case of Hodgkin's disease.

I survived through six months of chemotherapy and three weeks of radiation. Dee Harrell did not. This doesn't make me feel special, or even particularly lucky – it just makes me feel sad.

I wish I knew why one of us did well and the other did not. Perhaps it is due to the amount of disease each of us had, the extent it had spread through our bodies, or our individual reactions to the toxic effects of treatment.

It hardly matters to me, really. I only know one thing – you're not supposed to die when you're 19. You're not supposed to die when you're a loved son, or someone's closest friend. You're not supposed to die when you're a hero to a whole school and your entire community.

I left Chesapeake weeks after that game. The following March, on the day before my 26th birthday, I got a diagnosis of cancer. To say that I was shocked at the news wouldn't begin to do my feelings justice. After all, young people just don't get cancer, right? All I had was a lump on my neck.

I'm sure it was even more of a surprise for Dee, who probably accepted the possibility of getting injured on the football field, or at the track, but never expected to be hit by a life-threatening disease.

Part of that is our fault. We expect athletes to be superhuman. We watch their exploits on the fields and courts, and stand in awe of their strength, their power, their ability to appear untouchable.

But they are, ultimately, just like we are, and subject to the same injustices that life often hands out.

I am thankful that I can say I am in remission. I hope to be able to say that every day for the rest of my life. Once you've had cancer, you cannot escape that it has forever changed how you see things. I will never be able to hear or read something about Hodgkin's disease, or cancer in general, and not have an uneasy sense of recognition.

There's an old song that says "Preserve your memories, they're all that's left you." If that is true, then Dee Harrell made the kind of impression that few people will ever be fortunate enough to make.

His life meant something, and not just to his family and friends. But if most people only remember him for one play, on one night, in one football game, that's fine.

Just as long as they remember.

Posted by Highwaygirl on 12:46 PM | Comments (5)

May 14, 2005

We Are Your Captains In It

Gorillaz
"Feel Good Inc."
Listen | Buy

NOTES: Once again, I am powerless against the mighty force that is the Apple iPod marketing team. This is the song featured in the new "Rollerskating" commercial.

City's breaking down on a camel's back
They just have to go 'cos they don't hold back
So all you fill the streets, it's appealing to see
You won't get out the county, 'cos you're bad and free

You've got a new horizon, it's ephemeral style
A melancholy town where we never smile
And all I wanna hear is the message beep
My dreams they've got to kiss, because I donít get to sleep, no

Windmill, windmill for the land
Learn forever hand in hand
Take it all in on your stride
It is sticking, falling down
Love forever, love is free
Let's turn forever, you and me
Windmill, windmill for the land
Is everybody in?

Laughing gas these hazmats, fast cats
Linin' 'em up like ass crack
Ladies, ponies, at the track
It's my chocolate attack
Shit I'm stepping in the heart of this here
Care Bear bumping in the heart of this here
Watch me as I gravitate
Hahahahaha

Yo, we gonna ghost town
This Motown
With Joe sound
You in the place
You gonna bite the dust
Can't fight with us
With Joe sound
You kill the INC
So donít stop, get it, get it (get it!)
Until you're cheddar header
Yo, watch the way I navigate
Hahahahaha

Windmill, windmill for the land
Learn forever hand in hand
Take it all in on your stride
It is sticking, falling down
Love forever, love is free
Let's turn forever, you and me
Windmill, windmill for the land
Is everybody in?

Don't stop, get it, get it
We are your captains in it
Steady, watch me navigate
Hahahahaha

Posted by Highwaygirl on 12:43 PM | Comments (0)

May 13, 2005

You Can't Send It Alone

Unbelievable Truth
"Solved"
Listen | Buy

NOTES: U is for ... yeah. I'm still on the alphabet kick. I'm a little surprised I've never put up an Unbelievable Truth song, because there are three on the CD Almost Home that I love. This band was (they broke up) fronted by the younger brother of Radiohead singer Thom Yorke. Andrew Yorke has, in my opinion, a much better voice. This song, "Solved," is gorgeous. Although it's my favorite track off the CD, two others are also excellent – "Stone" (None of this is harder than knowing about you / If you were someone else I could live without you), and "Settle Down" (And if you move I'm following you / Wherever you go).

There's a problem, I can't solve it
The only way out is too hard now
There's another one when this one's gone
Can't send it alone
You can't send it alone

And it's all I've got
And it's not enough
And it's time to reason out my mind

What's a problem soon forgotten
Catching up with me and talking
Of a hero's so-called perfect life
Can't send it alone
And this time it's alone

And it's all I've got
And it's not enough
And it's time to reason out my mind

Thinking of ways to keep my time from running out
Thinking of ways to keep my pride from running out
So many reasons I can give for running out
Keep my head down but I still know
You can't send it alone

And it's all I've got
And it's not enough
And it's time to reason out my mind

You can't send it alone
You can't send it alone
You can't send it alone
You can't send it alone

There's a problem, I can't solve it

Posted by Highwaygirl on 11:58 AM | Comments (0)

May 12, 2005

Staccato Style

Rappy: boo!
Me: oh, hey
Me: I've been running around like a mad person
Rappy: I'm right at the end of TAR
Me: cool beans, page me when you're done
Rappy: ok
Rappy: I would have KICKED ASS in that onion task
Me: heh
Rappy: HOLY SHIT
Rappy: YAY!
Rappy: WOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOo!
Me: YAY!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Me: happiness
Rappy: I was getting nervous there with the begging!
Rappy: holy shit!
Rappy: I'd be all, fuck the driver and just run in
Rappy: mind you, it is miami
Rappy: he'd run in after me with an uzi
Me: hahahahahaha
Rappy: which just reminded me of that guy with the staccato emailing that my friend wanted to set me up with
Me: who?
Rappy: don't you remember? It was while I was still in Toronto, and my friend wanted to fix me up with her friend, and his emails were just utterly devoid of personality - staccato style
Rappy: we made fun of him and called him Uzi
Me: OH OH OH
Me: yes
Me: Uzi
Me: we did make fun of him, shame on us
Rappy: take that back
Rappy: there is no shame in that whatsoever

Posted by Highwaygirl on 05:37 PM | Comments (0)

Roger, Wilco

Wilco
"Jesus, Etc."
Listen | Buy

NOTES: W is for WILCO. Look, Rappy - "alternacountry"! Run away! So yeah. It was hard to decide which Wilco song to put up here. I was debating between "Pick Up the Change" from A.M., a couple of tracks from Being There, "Nothingsevergonnastandinmyway (Again)" from Summerteeth, and this track from Yankee Hotel Foxtrot. In the end I couldn't decide between this one (from one of their more recent releases) and something from Being There, so that track follows this one.

Jesus, don't cry
You can rely on me honey
You can combine anything you want
I'll be around
You were right about the stars
Each one is a setting sun

Tall buildings shake
Voices escape singing sad sad songs
Tuned to chords
Strung down your cheeks
Bitter melodies turning your orbit around

Don't cry
You can rely on me honey
You can come by any time you want
I'll be around
You were right about the stars
Each one is a setting sun

Tall buildings shake
Voices escape singing sad sad songs
Tuned to chords
Strung down your cheeks
Bitter melodies turning your orbit around

Voices whine
Skyscrapers are scraping together
Your voice is smoking
Last cigarettes are all you can get
Turning your orbit around

Our love
Our love
Our love is all we have
Our love
Our love is all of God's money
Everyone is a burning sun

Wilco
"Say You Miss Me"
Listen | Buy

NOTES: This song is from when Wilco truly was the "alternacountry" label that's been hung around their necks. I don't care. I love Jeff Tweedy's voice. And this is such a beautiful breakup song.

I've been sleepin' alone, out on my own
I'm sure it seems like I'm takin' my time
To get back to you
You been doin' your part, workin' real hard
I'm not lying, sure it seems like I'm tryin'
To get back at you

Do you miss me too?
Baby say I'll miss you
Just say you'll miss me too

I've been losing my mind, wastin' my time
I'm not crazy, sure it seems like I'm lazy
Not to get back to you
You been takin' it hard, I know it's hard
I'm not lyin' sure it seems like I'm tryin'
To get back at you

Do you miss me too?
Baby say I'll miss you
Just say you'll miss me too

Well I been mixed up since the break up
Why all I need you to say
Well everything's OK

Baby say I'll miss you
Just say you'll miss me too

Posted by Highwaygirl on 07:09 AM | Comments (3)

May 11, 2005

I'll Bust a Cap In Yo Azz

Ben is having a difficult time installing Movable Type. Ben has clearly angered the gods.

According to Ben's latest post, his mental state is right about here:

Ben is on the left, wielding his big bat

Of course, that visual image wouldn't be complete without the Geto Boys' "Still" playing in the background.

Posted by Highwaygirl on 11:03 PM | Comments (1)

Mount Nigel

Teem and I chatted through America's Next Top Model tonight, as usual. If you missed the episode, here is a summary:

Me: shit!!
Teem: oh oh!
Teem: there you are!
Me: what have I missed?
Teem: keenyah being a big old bitch
Teem: that's about it
Me: no shocker there
Me: is this a clip show?
Me: no
Teem: oh, and they have to do a african tribal dance in front of a huge audience
Teem: it's new!
Me: this isn't the final is it?
Teem: no
Me: ok
Teem: but it's obvious that tonight is keenyah's night to go
Teem: so we can *celebrate*
Me: I HOPE SO!
Me: *african tribal dances in celebration*
Teem: *waddles around*
Me: I like Kahlen
Teem: me too
Teem: I think she's my favorite, then naima
Me: yep
Teem: then like, 300 miles later, brittany
Me: shut up, fat keenyah
Me: keenyah's mouth is focked up
Teem: was keenyah always such a crackhead?
Teem: I don't remember this in earlier episodes
Me: she's gotten worse every ep
Me: mmm, Caress
Teem: *caresses you*
Me: GUYS!
Me: *jumps on*
Teem: hee!
Teem: lee-roy!
Me: ooh, she has porked out
Teem: that's a good name
Teem: Bertini is kinda creepy
Me: just wait
Me: the white guy is hot hot hot
Teem: he is
Me: keenyah sucked on a LEMON
Teem: keenyah sucks
Teem: ewwwwwwwwww he's moaning!
Teem: he was more like grunting
Me: I want the white guy model
Teem: keenyah is full of herself
Me: brittany is a lush
Me: how!
Me: *holds up palm*
Teem: how!
Teem: heeee
Me: catfight!
Teem: britney is wise when she's drunk
Teem: hee
Me: UGH!
Me: *mute*
Teem: dude
Teem: there's a pig on my tv!
Teem: a pig with great eyelashes
Me: her reign of terror needs to end
Me: Trublend!! UGH!!
Teem: bleh
Teem: satan's thighs, dude
Me: almost a hint
Me: I hate keenyah
Teem: hey, me too!
Me: you rock, teem!
Me: I think it will come down to Naima vs. Kahlen
Teem: I hope so!
Me: HI NIGEL!!!
Teem: I would let nigel moan at me
Me: I would let Nigel do ANYTHING to me
Me: ANYTHING
Me: *eyebrow*
Teem: hahahaha
Teem: this is going to be hilarious
Me: Brittany looks like she's been punched in the face
Teem: she's looking a little worse for the wear
Me: Naima looks dead
Teem: yep
Teem: *poses on nigel*
Me: *climbs on nigel*
Teem: *mounts nigel*
Me: dammit
Me: waited too soon to make my move
Teem: hee
Me: too long
Me: HEE!
Me: <-- dork
Me: crap, Kahlen might go
Teem: noooooooooooooooooooo
Me: I love Kahlen too!
Teem: britney has been taking good pictures
Me: dammit
Teem: uh
Me: *scared*
Teem: it has to be keenyah!
Me: IT BETTAH BE
Teem: cuz she's fat and stuff!
Me: oink oink
Me: FUCK
Me: I HATE THE WORLD
Teem: WHAT!
Me: Bye, Kahlen
Teem: fucking fucker
Teem: ARRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRGH
Teem: ARGHAFEKJAFHDSALFGhads
Me: kill! kill! kill!
Me: WHOA!!
Teem: wait!
Me: *screams*
Teem: oh!
Teem: naima is totally gone
Me: bye brittany?
Teem: mothrafocker
Me: it can't be naima
Me: CANNOT be
Teem: it is!
Teem: sumbitch
Me: but she's been the viewers' favorite 100 weeks in a row!
Teem: seriously!
Me: fire fire burning bright
Teem: I hate how tyra talks
Me: whew
Teem: whoa
Teem: poor brittany
Teem: we shoulda known
Me: keenyah sucks ass
Teem: since the ep concentrated on brit and keenyah
Teem: they are only keeping keenyah for the drama
Me: fine, look at the good
Me: then get off my screen
Teem: it's totally gonna be naima vs kahlen
Teem: heh
Me: naima wins this
Me: I FEEL IT
Me: IN MAH BONES
Teem: *feels*
Teem: is next ep the last one?
Me: I think so, yeah
Me: two hours
Teem: I bet it's up against the Lost finale
Teem: *hugs tivo*
Me: *hugs it good*
Me: it's my lovah
Teem: hee!
Me: ick
Me: ok
Me: watch this
Me: the end
Teem: are you going to watch this?
Me: she looks like he just came on her face
Teem: yes!!!!
Me: am I watching it?
Me: I dunno
Me: are you?
Teem: =-O O==8
Me: EXACTLY

Posted by Highwaygirl on 09:17 PM | Comments (2)

Have Pen, Will Travel

I think I should apply for this job:

Company: PAE GOVERNMENT SERVICES INC.
Position: Journalist: Test and Evaluation Specialist with PSYOP Experience
Location: Kabul, Afghanistan
Job Status: Full-time
Salary: $75,000 to $100,000
Website: http://www.paegroup.com

Position Description: Publish newspaper in Kabul, Afghanistan. Responsible for overseeing Target Audience Analysis Section and performing as the Senior Analyst responsible for designs polls, organization and conducting focus group meetings with local Afghanistan citizens. Planning future target audience analysis programmers and synthesizes all information in detailed reports to include supervising and administering 15 member local staff polling team.

Job Requirements:

  • Superior understanding of the information support requirement for PSYOPS Operations

  • Superior communication skills in English both written and verbal

  • Superior analytical skills

  • A very good listener

  • Capable of juggle more than two balls at a time

  • Sense of humor

  • Capable of thinking outside the box

  • A team player

  • Strong organizational skills

  • Profound knowledge concerning surveys and polls

For consideration please send resumes to paejobs@paegroup.com or contact:

Carlton Miller, Corporate Recruiter PAE Government Services Inc. 213.593.3235 voice 213.494.6428 cell paejobs@paegroup.com www.paegroup.com


I'm a freedom-loving patriot who wants to bring the heralded concept of free speech to a dusty far-off land ...

... but hopefully not die for it.

Posted by Highwaygirl on 12:37 PM | Comments (0)

But I Know One Thing

XTC
"Mayor of Simpleton"
Listen | Buy

NOTES: Continuing on in my endeavor to post songs from bands with names A-Z, we take care of "X" by including a selection from XTC. XTC is probably best known for their song "Dear God," but I think this track is shinier and happier. Much like myself. It's an ode to a simple man's love for a complex girl.

Never been near a university
Never took a paper or a learned degree
And some of your friends think that's stupid of me
But it's nothing that I care about

Well I don't know how to tell the weight of the sun
And of mathematics well I want none
And I may be the Mayor of Simpleton
But I know one thing
And that's I love you

When their logic grows cold and all thinking gets done
You'll be warm in the arms of the Mayor of Simpleton

I can't have been there when brains were handed 'round
(please be upstanding for the Mayor of Simpleton)
Or get past the cover of your books profound
(please be upstanding for the Mayor of Simpleton)
And some of your friends think it's really unsound
That you're even seen talking to me

Well I don't know how to write a big hit song
And all crossword puzzles well I just shun
And I may be the Mayor of Simpleton
But I know one thing
And that's I love you

I'm not proud of the fact that I never learned much
Just feel I should say
What you get is all real
I can't put on an act
It takes brains to do that anyway

And I can't unravel riddles, problems and puns
How the home computer has me on the run
And I may be the Mayor of Simpleton
But I know one thing
And that's I love you (I love you)

If depth of feeling is a currency
(please be upstanding for the Mayor of Simpleton)
Then I'm the man who grew the money tree
(no chain of office and no hope of getting one)
Some of your friends are too brainy to see
That they're paupers and that's how theyíll stay

Well I donít know how many pounds make up a ton
Of all the Nobel Prizes that Iíve never won
And I may be the Mayor of Simpleton
But I know one thing
And that's I love you

When all logic grows cold and all thinking gets done
You'll be warm in the arms of the Mayor of Simpleton

Posted by Highwaygirl on 07:11 AM | Comments (4)

May 10, 2005

Rubbin' On the Lotion

Dandy Warhols
"Horse Pills"
Listen | Buy

NOTES: It's been a good 10 days since I've posted a Dandy Warhols song. Can't let that happen again. The lyrics of this song are kinda silly, but I love the churning feel of the music.

So your ex got a mansion
Where you kick it on the hill
Your boy comes to see you
He's your Hollywood thrill
He's a Spanish fly
That bucks like a stallion
In the suits that you got him
He looks more Italian

And you worry 'bout your tan
When the weather's gettin' clammy
Summer in the city and winters in Miami
And you get so high on the high life bills
Cruisin' and boozin'
And rockin' on the horse size pills
You could even take more thrills
You could even take more spills
Pills, thrills, chills, and ills man, kills
And rockin' on the horse size

Butt's gettin' bigger
Do you think he'll notice maybe?
That's ok, don't worry 'bout it baby
'Cause everybody knows
He pumps you for your money
That's alright, don't worry 'bout it honey

In your itsy bitsy teeny weenie
Riding up your butt bikini
Keepin' on the heels
'Cause you're saggin' just a teeny bit more
Than the girls he pretends he doesn't thrill
Rubbin' on the lotion
And rockin' on the horse size pills

You could even take more thrills
You could even take more spills
Pills, thrills, chills, and ills man, kills
And rockin' on the horse size

Sometimes you feel like Moses
That's when you're toasted

And rockin' on the horse size

Posted by Highwaygirl on 11:14 PM | Comments (0)

Slipshod

Me: I ordered from Zappos
Teem: what what?
Me: it's SUPPOSED to come today
Me: but UPS is saying tomorrow
Me: because they're hateful
Teem: indian mocassins?
Me: YES!!!
Me: how did you know?
Teem: how!
Teem: *raises palm*
Me: *dies laughing*
Me: http://www.zappos.com/n/p/product_id/7171890.html
Teem: oh, those are stupid cute!
Teem: and cheap!
Me: I'm checking my UPS confirmation link...
Me: THEY HAVE BEEN DELIVERED!!!
Me: *screams*
Teem: *waddles around quickly*

Posted by Highwaygirl on 05:15 PM | Comments (3)

May 09, 2005

Reconnections

Tonight I had dinner with the guy who was my best friend in high school. He wrote me the following letter at the end of our senior year:

Julie,

Wow, what can I say? If I could write with the brilliance of a calligraphist, or had the mind of a prophet, I could perhaps come close to adequately thanking you for the friendship you have given me. God knows I was very undeserving of it.

You are the only person I can truly call a friend. I want to thank you for believing in me when no one else did. You always told me the truth and kept me from pitying myself. I have told you everything about my life and you've listened. I hope that somehow I helped you with some of your problems and was half the friend you were to me.

For the first time in my life I'm at a loss for words. I just wanted to say thank you for the being the best friend a person could have.

Love,
G

Isn't that nice? He was wrong, though - he was very deserving.

Posted by Highwaygirl on 10:50 PM | Comments (0)

May 08, 2005

Mint Juleps for Everyone

I went to the Kentucky Derby this weekend:

mintjulies.jpg

I had a really good time.

Posted by Highwaygirl on 09:31 PM | Comments (5)

May 06, 2005

Ork! Ork! Ork!

So last night I had a pretty UGH time after work. I was lying on my couch watching TV and assessing my idiocy, when I managed to fall asleep. Around 9 p.m.

I awoke to the sound of the disembodied voice of one RandomBen. Which confused me, because - Ben? Huh? In my living room?

My sleep addled brain ran through a quick round of "Where In the World Is RandomBen?" and came up with "not here" - so then the voice confused me even further.

I was pretty sure I was dreaming. Then I hear him say "bedroom" and I'm very, VERY sure I'm dreaming. My brain chose that moment to snap back into reality, which is when I realized that DisembodiedBen was merely talking on my answering machine.

*runs*

So we're talking and it sounds like he's in a wind tunnel. Washington - a very windy place. Talking, laughing, laughing, talking, LAUGHING, talking ...

(Side note: I've noticed that I am constantly laughing when I talk to Ben. Not "ha ha" laughing, but more like ... theater of the absurd laughing. So now I consciously stifle my laughter, else I start to seem like I'm an airheaded bimbo who will laugh at anything.)

... talking – and then I start hearing voices in the background.

At least I think they're voices. I can't really make out the words, but I'm definitely hearing significant background noise. So I tune out the sound of Ben's voice (heh) and start listening more closely to the sounds in the background, and then I realize what it is:

SEAL!

Not this guy. These guys:

Ben is being serenaded by a group (clutch? pod? coven?) of sea lions that are basking in the sun about 30 feet off the pier upon which he's standing. How cool is that? (Answer: Very cool.)

So our entire conversation was interspersed with the melodious "ork! ork! ork!"s of the sea lions. The appropriate payment for services rendered (ork! ork! ork!), moving really sucks (ork! ork! ork!), the politics of threesomes (ork! ork! ork!), "there's nothing wrong with a courtesy reach-around" (ork! ork! ork!).

Very cool. Near the end, the coven of sea lions slipped off their perch and frolicked in the water, much to Ben's obvious amusement (seriously, it was like he was a 10 year-old boy again).

But now I want a sea lion of my own, dammit.

Posted by Highwaygirl on 07:16 AM | Comments (8)

I Don't Need To Know This

Hayden
"In September"
Listen | Buy

NOTES: After I created my MP3 Archive I realized that certain letters of the alphabet were not represented in my song selections (or over-represented, like "S" - oy). So I will begin rectifying these omissions with the posting of this angry, loud (but insanely catchy) track from Hayden, a Canadian who could undoubtably kick Snow's ass. Then again, who couldn't kick Snow's ass? Hhhhanyway, this is a malevolent song for people who are ticked off and aren't going to take it anymore (I like to sing the first two lines under my breath while at work).

I don't need to
Take this shit from you
I don't want you
Calling me up at 2
Just to tell me that some guy you met who
While at a party, told you that he loved you

I don't need to know this
Need to know this
I don't wanna know this
Wanna know this

Tell me the way they are with you
Tell me exactly what they do
Things that you say don't need to prove
That what I have is much to lose

I don't need to
Take this shit from you
I don't want you
Calling me up at 2
Just to tell me that some guy you met who
While at a party, came just looking at you

We never should have said that in September
We shouldn't go away but stay together

Tell me the way to be with you
Tell me exactly what to do
Things that you say don't need to prove
That what I have is love for you
For you
For you

Posted by Highwaygirl on 06:34 AM | Comments (2)

May 05, 2005

And So Fade Away

U2
"Bad"
Listen | Buy

NOTES: I decided to archive/list all of the mp3s I've posted on this site, just so I could scan through and see what bands I've featured (there's now a link to MP3 Archive over there on the right nav under Fun Stuff). In doing so I realized that I've never posted this song, my all-time favorite from U2. I can't listen to this song if I'm already feeling sad; it just seems to affect me in a weird way. But at all other times, I think it's one of the most beautiful, haunting, and poignant songs I've ever heard.

If you twist and turn away
If you tear yourself in two again
If I could, yes I would
If I could, I would
Let it go
Surrender...
Dislocate...

If I could throw this
Lifeless lifeline to the wind
Leave this heart of clay
See you walk, walk away
Into the night
And through the rain
Into the half-light
And through the flame

If I could through myself
Set your spirit free
I'd lead your heart away
See you break, break away
Into the light
And to the day

To let it go
And so to fade away
To let it go
And so fade away

I'm wide awake...
I'm wide awake...
Wide awake
I'm not sleeping

If you should ask then maybe they'd
Tell you what I would say
True colors fly in blue and black
Bruised silken sky and burning flag
Colors crash, collide in bloodshot eyes

If I could, you know I would
If I could, I would
Let it go...

This desperation
Dislocation
Separation
Condemnation
Revelation
In temptation
Isolation
Desolation

Let it go...
And so fade away
To let it go
And so fade away
To let it go
And so to fade away

I'm wide awake...
I'm wide awake...
Wide awake
I'm not sleeping

Posted by Highwaygirl on 07:04 AM | Comments (2)

May 04, 2005

The Lovers, the Dreamers, and Me

Kermit the Frog
"The Rainbow Connection"
Listen | Buy

NOTES: This is for Ben, who is having a bad day.

Why are there so many
Songs about rainbows
And what's on the other side
Rainbows are visions
But only illusions
And rainbows have nothing to hide

So we've been told
And some chose to believe it
I know they're wrong, wait and see
Someday we'll find it
The rainbow connection
The lovers, the dreamers, and me

Who said that every wish
Would be heard and answered
When wished on the morning star
Somebody thought of that
And someone believed it
Look what it's done so far

What's so amazing
That keeps us star gazing
And what do we think we might see
Someday we'll find it
The rainbow connection
The lovers, the dreamers, and me

All of us under its spell
We know that it's probably magic

Have you been half asleep
And have you heard voices
I've heard them calling my name
Are these the sweet sounds
That called the young sailors
The voice might be one and the same

I've heard it too many times to ignore it
It's something that I'm supposed to be
Someday we'll find it
The rainbow connection
The lovers, the dreamers, and me

Posted by Highwaygirl on 10:23 PM | Comments (2)

Cocking the Holes

Rappy: are you watching Medium?
Me: not right this second, no
Rappy: no, I mean, do you watch the show?
Me: <-- at work
Rappy: thanks for the clarification there, Einstein

Me: an Aussie posted on me site!
Rappy: I saw!
Me: *responds*
Rappy: and he's bringing friends
Rappy: you're like, a kegger

Jake: SAMSONITE!!!
Me: SUCTION CUP DILDO!!!
Jake: PIG POOCH ORANGATANG!!!
Me: uhhh ...
Me: OK, you win

Jake: she's talking about leaky holes right now
Jake: and... caulking
Jake: pronounced COCKING
Jake: COCKING THE HOLES damn you
Jake: plugging them
Jake: stopping the leakage
Jake: because they have "DRIED AND SHRUNK"
Jake: they are "OLD"
Me: *retches*
Jake: "IF I WERE HOME RIGHT NOW, I'D BE WET"
Me: NO
Me: she did not say that
Jake: yes
Jake: she did
Jake: but referring to her kitchen windows
Jake: from the rain

Jake: you excited him
Me: I will stab you if you continue that line of thought
Jake: hahahaha
Jake: you...
Jake: aroused him
Me: I mean it
Me: SHUT IT
Jake: you...
Jake: made him sweaty
Me: Jake
Jake: *smiley*
Me: our friendship hangs in the balance
Jake: hahahaha

Jake: http://www.cnn.com/2005/SHOWBIZ/Movies/05/04/
oldest.munchkin.ap/index.html
Me: you and your midgets
Jake: the midgets of the world need a leader
Jake: and I
Jake: I am up to the challenge
Jake: I shall harness the power of the midget
Jake: and with that midget power, RULE THE WORLD
Me: like a team of tiny oxen

Posted by Highwaygirl on 05:46 PM | Comments (8)

Everybody, Let's Rock

He's baaaaaaaaack!

elvis16.jpg

(Phil, you can skip this entry.)

On Sunday, May 8, CBS will begin airing the two-part miniseries "ELVIS" starring none other than Jonathan Rhys Meyers.

You remember JRM, right? He was one of my first celebrity crushes. The pretty boy who inspired me to wax philosophical after seeing him gyrate upon a pool table wearing skintight red leather pants.

Oh yeah! THAT GUY!

Anyway, he's playing Elvis. I'm living in fear of just how bad this might be, and yet still, I'll have my face pressed to the television screen come Sunday night. They've made him look pretty good:

elvis4.jpg

Not too bad. I have a feeling his attempt at an Elvis voice is going to be cringe-worthy, though.

Posted by Highwaygirl on 09:20 AM | Comments (1)

May 03, 2005

Effective Advertising 101

polo_underwear_backtobasics.jpg

Suddenly I have an overwhelming urge to buy Polo men's underwear. How very strange...

Posted by Highwaygirl on 08:43 AM | Comments (6)

May 02, 2005

And On To the Next One

Guster
"So Long"
Listen | Buy

NOTES: Have you ever been in a situation where you were pretty sure things weren't going to end the way you wanted them to ... and you pursued things anyway? You jumped into the morass with lead boots on both feet, knowing that the planets would all have to align in harmonic convergence, and all the cosmic tumblers would have to fall into place for things to work out, and you were pretty sure you were an idiot for not just accepting that the odds were completely, totally against you getting what you want and so you should just embrace that fact and move right along with your life, and yet ... you tried anyway? Yeah.

But I digress. I can hardly believe I've never put a Guster song up on my site, because Lost and Gone Forever is one of the top 10 CDs that I own.


Yes I heard all that you had to say
That's when it all fell apart
Might be hated but I can't pretend
I liked you better before

So long, so long
Front foot leads the back one
Go on, and it won't be too soon
I'm gone, I'm gone
And on to the next one
So long, and I won't be back soon

Yes I'm blue, but from holding my breath
Like I have from the start
I'm the villian and I should confess
I liked you better before

So long, so long
And on to the next one
Go on, and it won't be too soon
I'm gone, I'm gone
Bet you saw this one coming
So long and I won't be back soon

It's hateful to say
I see it this way
I don't even know who you are
But in my defense I'd do it again
I don't need to know who you are

So long, so long
And on to the next one
Go on, and it won't be too soon
You're gone, you're gone
Are you waiting for something?
Go on, 'cause I won't be back soon

It's hateful to say
I see it this way
I don't even know who you are
But in my defense I'd do it again
I don't need to know who you are

So long, so long
Front foot leads the back one
Go on, 'cause it won't be too soon
You're lost and gone and on to the next one
Don't need to know who you are

Don't need to know who you are

Posted by Highwaygirl on 10:04 PM | Comments (0)

I'm Gonna Get My Shit Together

Fountains of Wayne
"Bright Future In Sales"
Listen | Buy

NOTES: Guess who is back at work today?! That's right - JAKE. So this song is for him. I was first going to go with Depeche Mode's "Personal Jesus" but decided that would inflate his ego too much. I think this FOW song is much more appropriate, given the situation. Vive le Jake!

Sleeping on a planter at the Port Authority
Waiting for my bus to come
Seven scotch and sodas at the office party
Now I don't remember where I'm from

I think I had a black wallet in my back pocket
With a bus ticket and a picture of my baby inside
And if I make it home alive

I'm gonna get my shit together
'Cause I can't live like this forever
You know I've come too far
And I don't wanna fail
I got a new computer
And a bright future in sales, yeah yeah
Bright future in sales, yeah yeah

Heading for the airport on a misty morning
Gonna catch a flight to Baltimore
Try to kill an hour with a whiskey sour
And this time I might have just one more

I gotta do some quick reading for the big meeting
But my head is spinning and I can't quite open my eyes
As long as I don't have to drive

I'm gonna get my shit together
'Cause I can't live like this forever
You know I've come too far
And I don't want to fail
I got a new computer
And a bright future in sales, yeah yeah
Bright future in sales, yeah yeah

I had a line on a brand new account
But now I can't seem to find where I wrote that number down
I try to focus, I'm staring at the screen
Pretending like I know what all these little flashing lights mean

I gotta do some quick reading for the big meeting
But my head is spinning and I can't quite open my eyes

I've gotta get my shit together
'Cause I can't live like this forever
You know I've come too far
And I don't want to fail
I got a new computer
And a bright future in sales, yeah yeah
Bright future in sales, yeah yeah

Posted by Highwaygirl on 06:42 AM | Comments (0)

May 01, 2005

'Cause You Know I Know Baby

Genesis
"Throwing It All Away"
Listen | Buy

NOTES: For some reason I've had this song in my head all day long. Normally, I really dislike Phil Collins. Clearly I've been hanging around with Teem too long, because now I kinda like a lot of his songs (solo and with Genesis). His lyrics are always so sad, though.

Need I say I love you
Need I say I care
Need I say that emotion's
Something we don't share
I don't want to be sitting here
Trying to deceive you
'Cause you know I know baby
That I don't wanna go

We cannot live together
We cannot live apart
And that's the situation
I've known it from the start
Every time that I look at you
I can see the future
'Cause you know I know baby
That I don't wanna go

Just throwing it all away
Throwing it all away
Is there nothing that I can say
To make you change your mind

I watch the world go 'round and 'round
And see mine turning upside down

Throwing it all away

Now who will light up the darkness
Who will hold your hand
Who will find you the answers
When you don't understand
Why should I have to be the one
Who has to convince you
'Cause you know I know baby
That I don't wanna go

Someday you'll be sorry
Someday when you're free
Memories will remind you
That our love was meant to be
But late at night when you call my name
The only sound you'll hear
Is the sound of your voice calling
Calling after me

Just throwing it all away
Throwing it all away
And there's nothing I can say
We're throwing it all away
Yes we're throwing it all away

Posted by Highwaygirl on 09:40 PM | Comments (4)