Ten on Friday Just Doesn't Have The Same Ring

It’s Friday. I’m feeling lazy, so I’m just going to list some random stuff instead of trying to make some kind of coherent thought. Think of it as a 10 on Tuesday, only on Friday.

1. Boomsday is this weekend! For you non-Knoxvillians, Boomsday is the city’s fireworks show to celebrate Labor Day. It’s an all day thing with concerts and food vendors and bouncy castles and stuff, and then at 9:30, we do the largest Labor Day fireworks show in the Southeast. Very exciting. I cannot wait to go!

2. Do other countries have Labor Day? I’m not sure. I think maybe Canada does too, but I’m not sure about anyone else. Anyone else getting Monday off work?

3. My very exciting Labor Day plans also include pressure washing and staining the back deck, and washing and repainting the front porch. (Tony is very excited about this plan, as you can no doubt imagine). Still, it must be done, and it’ll just go faster with two of us, (as opposed to one of us doing it all while the other one sits inside and watches, say, college football).

4. Speaking of college football, my beloved Vols play on Monday! First game of the year! To be honest, I’m not a huge huge football fan. I tend to get bored around halftime. But I am a huge fan of football season with all the cheering and tailgating and chili and giant sandwiches. I guess I love football food more than football itself.

5. In between football and deck staining, Tony and I are also going to redo the guest bathroom. Remember the brown one? Well, in a fit of hormonal rage this week, I decided I couldn’t stand the brown one more minute, and I bought a can of paint primer and primed over it all. (And then I lost my motivation and took a nap on the couch). So now the walls have varying thicknesses of primer on them, and all the bathroom essentials are spread out all over the hallway floor. That will be put to rights this weekend, again with Tony’s help. (He’s such a good sweetie pie!)

6. Speaking of hormonal rages, you’ll be glad to know that I’m out of my funk. I’m in a much better mood, and I managed to make it through the week without getting myself fired. Sadly, a large amount of cookie dough was ingested as an alternative. Major gym penance will be required.

7. Speaking of a good workout, ya’ll sign up for Race for the Cure this year. They’ve extended the early bird sign-up to September 5th, so if you register before then, it’s $5 cheaper. Tony and I are all signed up, even though he’s making a fuss over it. I told him it was for a good cause. I told him that men get breast cancer too. I told him about all the free doughnuts. He’s going.

8. In kidney-related news, it appears I still have my infection, but it doesn’t hurt so much as make me think that I have to go to the bathroom ALL THE TIME. I had my follow-up appointment today, and the doctor put me on a different type of drug, which promises to finish off the infection without making me so nauseous. They also took about 2 gallons of blood today, which will be sent off to some magical place to be tested for how well my one super-kidney is doing. I have full confidence that it will pass with flying colors. I would appreciate not having to go to the bathroom every 2 minutes though. Stupid infection.

9. Tony is laughing at me because I have somehow picked up the phrase “Golly bum”, as in “Golly bum, that’s some stubborn glue!” or “Golly bum! I ate too much”. I have no idea what it means or where it came from, but I think it’s kind of the southern redneck equivalent to “By George” or “Gee whiz”. (Come to think of it, I don’t really know what those two mean either). I didn’t even realize I was saying it until Tony made fun of me pointed it out.

10. Ya’ll enjoy your long weekend. I know I will. And you guys down there in the path of Gustav and Hanna take care of yourselves. Don’t get washed away with the storms. You can send a little of the rain my way, but wait until after Labor Day so my deck stain can dry. I’m just sayin’. Peace out Internets!

My Look Is Sooo 90 Years Ago

Waitress where I was having lunch today: Is your hair naturally curly?
Me (who has hair tied back in a pony tail with multiple rubber bands to control the above mentioned frizz curl): Yes
Waitress: It looks like one of those 20’s flapper hairstyles. You could totally pull off the 20’s flapper look.
Me: Um. Thanks?

Am I missing something here? Because I always thought that flappers had hair like this:

This is not my hair. I would love this hair, but this is not it. Not even when I try to straighten it. And with all the humidity in the air from the rain the past three days, this could pretty much be the exact opposite of my hair. My anti-hair, if you will. I suppose that it’s entirely possible that there did exist at one point a flapper with curly hair, but I thought that the general look of the day was the bob, not the pony tail. I could be wrong through.

For that matter, I’m not even sure if telling someone that they have flapper hair is a compliment. I may be 90 years out of fashion.

8/26/08 Dear Diary

I always hate it when bloggers write things like "There's a thing that I've really been struggling with that I can't talk about, but it's really bothering me and I can't tell you any of the details". I always wonder why they even bother mentioning it if they won't talk about the details.

Well, there's a thing that I've really been struggling with that I can't talk about, but it's really bothering me and I can't tell you any of the details.

Or it may just feel that way because I have major PMS.

Either way. Stressed. Annoyed. Emotional snacking. But no details because, hey, it's the Internet, and you have to be careful what you complain about on the Internet because there's always a chance that the person you're complaining about discovers your "anonymous" blog and then fires your butt. (Clue number 1)

Suffice it to say that I've had one of those moments where I woke up this morning and said, "What the heck am I doing with my life?" (Clue number 2)

And then consoled myself with about 8 chocolate chip cookies. Stupid PMS.

Anyway, all this cryptic posting is really just me trying to figure out if I REALLY need to change direction in my life, or if it's just the hormones talking. Do men ever have this problem? Do they lie awake at night, guessing the true motivation for why they wanted to throw a chair through the conference room window (clue number 3), or be all "up your nose with a rubber hose, Mr. Boss Man!"? (Not that I did either of these things today, but I wanted to...which begs the question, is it time for a change of scenery, or just less estrogen?)

I guess the smart thing to do is to not make any life-altering decisions until this week is over. Because while part of me would have a really good time just lounging around at home with my good friend Hershey, that would quickly result in becoming jobless, which would turn into penniless and homeless pretty quickly. And that would not be good.

Thanks for lending an ear (eye?) while I rant. I feel better. I almost deleted all of this after I finished writing it, but I thought that if anyone was going through something similar, it might help to know that they aren't alone, and it's just the hormones talking. (That and I didn't have anything else to write about, and you would have been all like, "Where'd she go?") So...thanks.

And I promise I'll be back on my game next week. Or as soon as I finish this entire tub of Ben and Jerry's. Whichever.

She's Alive!

I just wanted to check in so that all of you that were worried about the kidney know that I'm okay. I think the infection is finally on its last legs, because I feel 100 times better today than I did yesterday, and yesterday was 100 times better than the day before. Soo, mucho improvemento.

The nausea is finally gone, and for the first time in three or four days, the thought of food does not repulse me. Or the smell- I've been super-sensitive with smells. (On Wednesday night, Tony ordered a couple of greasy pizzas for dinner. I took one whiff of them and spent the rest of the night in the bathroom. The next night, Tony made greasy Hamburger Helper for dinner. It's not his fault- he was just trying to help by making dinner, but the smell of hamburger is not a sick stomach's friend). But today! Today, my friends, I am not repulsed. Still a little gun-shy around the greasy foods, but I managed to eat a small salad and half of a club sandwich for lunch today. After three days of nothing but dry toast, real food tastes so good again!

I also went back to work today. And actually enjoyed it. I was only out two days, but two days of laying on the couch by yourself, wishing you would just die and get it over with tends to get boring really fast. So I was actually excited to be back at work, even if everyone kept coming over to check on me.

This is day three of the five day treatment, so I'm half-way there. I'm drinking a bazillion gallons of water everyday to help flush everything out...which means I'm in the bathroom a bazillion times. This may be too much information, but the drugs are creating a very interesting urine color that after much thought, I have named sunset orange. It still manages to surprise me. (At least when UT football starts up, I'll have my team colors through and through).

Anyway, I just wanted to let all ya'll out there in the blogosphere know that I'm okay, and I have a new appreciation for all the things that I took for granted before. Like caring co-workers. And being able to sleep at night. And greasy pizza. I can't wait to eat that pizza.

My Quirky Kidney

Where have I been, you ask? Well, funny story...
It also started a couple of weeks ago really, when I would wake up and my left side/back area would be all stiff and painful. And I thought that it was just because I had slept on it the wrong way, or tweaked it playing softball, or because things just get stiff and creaky when you hit the ripe old age of 28. So I popped a couple of Advil, iced it down, and otherwise ignored it.

Then last Thursday, I was sitting at work in my not-so-ergonomically-designed office chair, and my side was just absolutely killing me. I mean, can't even ignore it anymore killing me. Any sane person would have gone to the doctor, but I, in my anti-doctor wisdom, made an appointment to have a massage instead. And that took the pain away...for about 30 minutes. So I went home and iced it and told myself that if it still hurt the next day, I'd go to the doctor.

Except that the next day when I woke up, I was fine. A little Advil, a little ice compress, and sleeping with my knees on a pillow did the trick. Self-congratulatory back pat for not rushing off to get medical help for every little passing twinge. As a matter of fact, I forgot all about the pain.

Until Tuesday.

Tuesday I woke up, and there was the pain again! Only this time it was worse! A lot worse! And it wasn't going away with ice and Advil either. So I did what every smart person would do and made an appointment to see a doctor. HAHA! Not really! I went to work instead. (Foolish but dedicated, that's me!) Anyway, I lasted until about 4:00, when the pain had beads of sweat popping out on my forehead. FINALLY I called a doctor.

There's a walk-in clinic not too far from work, and they told me to come on. So I went, but by the time I got there at 4:30, they told me that due to the complexity of my pain, they wouldn't be able to treat me in half an hour (they closed at 5). They wanted me to come back the next morning, but by this time, I knew that this was not just your run-of-the-mill back pain...this was something serious. So I called Tony and he took me to the ER.

At first, everyone was thinking kidney stones. They doped me up and did a CT scan to see exactly what was what. The good news: I don't have a kidney stone. The bad news: I have a urinary tract infection that is so bad, it has gotten into my kidney. The weird news: I only have one.

That's right. The CT scan revealed that I only have one kidney. Who knew? All this time, I would have thought two, but according to the doctor, I'm just one of those rare people who was born with only one. (I wonder what is in the missing kidney's place? Maybe all those singles socks that the dryer eats, or lost buttons). 28 years, and I never knew I was down a kidney. Take me off of your donor lists- this kidney is spoken for. The upside, said the doctor, is that my one kidney is a super kidney, because it is doing the job of two kidneys. (At least the organs that bothered to show up are over-achievers). Of course, the down side to the one kidney thing is that having a urinary tract infection in it becomes much more serious.

They have put me on some heavy duty meds. I mean, heavy duty atomic bomb meds. And they make me so nauseated, which is not fun. And they make me twitchy, which is doubly not fun, especially when nauseated. But they also kill my UTI, so what can I do? I have to protect my's all I've got.

I do think Mom and Dad have some explaining to do, because I definitely got the short end of the inner organs stick here. Someone's chromosomes were definitely slacking. (Of course, what I lack in kidney, I definitely make up for in wit and charm and brains, right?)

I can say that I've definitely learned a lesson. Here I only had one kidney, and I had foolishly ignored the warning pain that there was something wrong with it. If I had gone to the doctor sooner, we could have caught the UTI before it got this bad. And I wouldn't have to be taking these pills that make me barf-ish. And my super kidney would still be super.

Moral of the story: Skip work. Go to doctor.

Your super organs will thank you.

Weekend Update: Feast

Good morning Internets. (Did that sound like “Good morning Angels” to anyone else? No? Never mind then). Everybody have a good weekend? Tony and I did our annual Feast with the Beasts at the zoo on Saturday, and I was all set to write about it, but I really couldn’t think of anything new to say that I hadn’t already said last year, and the year before, and the year before. (That’s the problem with annual traditions…there isn’t enough that changes to keep the story fresh). Not that it wasn’t still good! I loved going. The weather was perfect, the food was great, the music was fun. There were fewer food vendors this year than in the past, which I’m going to guess has something to do with the recent economic struggles, but the amount of people that came out to partake seemed to increase, so maybe they aren’t struggling that much. Also, the crowd seemed to be younger this year (or maybe I’m just getting old?). In years past, everybody just went in jeans and t-shirts, but this year, the younger clubbing crowd showed up in their form-fitting dresses and ridiculously high heels, and I felt very underdressed in my jeans and sandals. Then again, I was still walking comfortably three hours later, while flashy clubbing girls were limping and miserable. Score one for the sensible shoes. The food was, as usual, awesome.

On a completely different topic in a completely different direction, does anybody know what to do with extra watermelon? I love it, but Tony doesn’t, and I refuse to buy half of a watermelon when it is the same price as a full one, but I just can’t eat an entire watermelon by myself. So here I am with half of a watermelon. Any ideas? Does watermelon freeze? Can you can it, or pickle it (ewww!) or bake it in a pie? I really hate to just throw it away.

The Students Are Coming

They're baaaaaack! A new school year begins, and the students have returned to UT to begin their new semesters. In honor of that, and because I'm too busy fighting my way through the school supply asile at Wal-mart to write something new, I'm reposting last year's Move In Day post.

Originally published on 8/16/07

It's going to be a very busy weekend this weekend, so I thought I'd get an early start on reporting all of the activities. Specifically, the students are moving back to UT this weekend. Even though we're in summer's death grip with it being 102 degrees out (ack!), the Powers that decide when to begin that adventure that is higher education thought that they might as well get started on the "fall" semester. (I can't really blame them. If we waited until we started having fall-like weather around here before going to class, we'd be halfway through November). Anyway, the band kids and sorority kids are already back, but the general mass student population is scheduled to move in this weekend. And that's when the fun really begins.

All through the summer, the University sleeps. Sure, there's some summer classes going on, but compared to the rest of the school year, the place is a ghost town. You can drive down the "strip" without hoards of bodies stepping mindlessly into the street in front of you (be warned UT students...if you're outside of the crosswalk, you're fair game and I'm not slowing down). You can find a parking space within 2 miles of your destination, and almost no one comes to Mass in tattered shorts and flip-flops. And all that is nice. The University needs that break every summer to rest and regroup and repair. We all do. But every August, the relaxed feeling in the air gradually gets replaced by a buzzing excitement. Almost like a nervous energy. You can feel the University brace itself. The students are coming.

I love living in a college town. There's an excitement here that you just can't find anywhere else. And move in day is one of those days where the excitement reaches a fever pitch. (Rivaled only by home football game days). Move in days are like being on a roller coaster and waiting in line for it all at the same time. UT has roughly 27,000 students at any given time, and 99.9% of them will try to move in this Saturday. (I don't know why they all decide to come on Saturday. Classes don't start until Wednesday. If you're going through check-in, come on Sunday. I promise that Sunday will be a cakewalk compared to Saturday. Saturday is a zoo).

Here's what will happen: All the new college students will wake up early and load up their parents, friends, clothes, computers, stereos, TVs, school stuff, decorations, boxes of Mac and cheese, party supplies, cooking pots and pans, floor rugs, shower shoes, beanbag chairs, bedding supplies, and the kitchen sink into the backs of their cars, trucks, and SUVs to the point that they can no longer see out of the rearview mirror and overflow stuff is tied to the roof. And they'll come. Unfortunately, no matter how close they live to campus, the traffic jam caused by 27,000 cars all going to one place will guarantee that the trip will take at least 40 days and 40 nights, and the college bound caravan will arrive hungry, already exhausted, and ready to kill their newly independent adult child, whose nerves are expressing themselves through moods swings that make menopausal schizophrenics jealous.

They'll want to park and regroup when they get to the residence hall ("Dorms are made of bricks...Residence Halls are made of people") but they'll discover that the entire parking lot has been turned into a 30 minute unloading zone only, and the local police are ticketing any vehicle left unattended. So someone will sit with the car in the 102 degree parking lot, snarling at the roaming packs of cars intent on stealing their space and trying to fight heat stroke. Everyone else in the moving party will shuffle into a rat maze of lines that have been constructed inside the lobby.They may think that they've made it once they're inside the lobby, they're almost through. Ha! Checking in to a residence hall is like going to Disneyland, only instead of rides, you get to fill out paperwork. You stand in line. The line inches forward. You reach a table. You fill out a form. You stand in the next line. You inch towards the next table. You fill out another form. You stand in the next line. This process repeats until either you've seen more forms than the IRS, or the nice people in white coats drag you off to the loony bin. All you really want is the room key so that you can start moving stuff in, but housing staff knows this, so they deliberately keep the keys at the last table. (When I worked in housing, this was my favorite station to work, because people were so happy to finally see me. You can tell when people are at their form breaking point).

You may think that you're almost through because now you have your key, but wrong again! You have to get your stuff out of the car and into your new room. All the residence halls have a couple of rolling luggage carts for just such purposes, and by a couple, I mean no more than 5. Unfortunately 5 cannot be easily shared by the 27,000 people checking in. So there's a cart list at the front desk and your room phone will be called when a cart is available. There's also a huge black market for luggage carts, and the bidding, bribing and begging for use of anything with wheels will reach astronomical proportions. (Bring some luggage carts with you and you'll make a fortune). Most people just start dragging stuff in by hand while they wait for the cart, but you're now another man down, because while one is guarding the car, another is stuck in the room, waiting for the cart call.The halls all have elevators, but don't count on using those because they are absolutely packed with people and their stuff. You'll wait 10 minutes for an elevator to show up, and there will be no room to get on. Better off just walking those 6 flights of stairs. Carrying your TV. And the beanbag chair. And Grandma. You'll work all day to get your stuff into the room, and then you'll head out to Wal-mart to purchase yet more stuff to make the new 10x10 cinder block wall room feel more like home and less like a prison cell. If you're a girl, it will take you days to organize all of your stuff. If you're a guy, you'll leave it stacked into a pile in the middle of your room until Thanksgiving.

Mom and Dad will head back home (in tears if it's your first time on your own), and you and your new roommate will stare at each other, wondering what you've gotten yourselves into. Don't worry about it. That's just move-in day nerves. You'll have parties and cookouts and games and outings and book buying and 50 mile hikes around campus, and that will just be your first day there. It will take you a little while to get into the college student rhythm, but don't worry, because you will find your classes, and you will make friends, and you will be able to sleep through that racket in the hall. And in no time, you'll be jumping out into traffic on the strip, taking up my parking spaces, and wearing tattered shorts and flip-flops to Mass.

Welcome back guys. Have a great new semester.

The Second Most Exciting Thing To Do At 2 AM.

Oh ya’ll, are you not just LOVING the Olympics right now? I have thirty-something hours of grueling athletic competition DVRed and ready for my enjoyment. My new nightly ritual is to lie in bed and watch the competitions until I fall asleep. (This granted, is hard to do while I’m jumping up and down on the bed cheering and insulting Bob Costas, so it’s made for some very late nights).

As a matter of fact, if watching the Olympics ever became an Olympic sport, I would soooo medal. I have it down to an art. I conserve my energy for the most important parts by fast forwarding through all the commercials, Bob Costas seeing how many adjectives he can use for the work “rigorous” (grueling, challenging, stringent), and any interviews with athletes that I can’t recognize in less than 3 seconds. I also fast forward through long races, like rowing, only stopping to see who wins. I have gotten to where I follow beach volleyball games at 30 times the normal speed, and bring it back to normal speed the instant they break away to the water cube. I can identify all the members of the men’s swim relay team, and not just Michael Phelps like the rest of you Olympic posers. (Admit it. You only love him because he’s won a bazillion medals and has a body that you could eat off of). I however, love him for his art. His passion. His very dedication to his craft.

Okay and his abs. Sweet mercy, that boy has some abs.

But I also watch the women’s fencing and the equestrian events. And the men’s gymnastics. And the rowing. And the synchronized diving, which may very well be my new favorite sport because it is just so graceful; embodying all the things I am not. (Note: I didn’t think about this, but some of those synchro teams don’t actually like each other. I mean, they work together, they mirror each other perfectly, but they are not guaranteed bestest buddies like you would expect. They’re just co-workers. I guess you can’t always mirror personalities like you can with a one and a half twist). Regardless, I love them all.

Tony, on the other hand, has no Olympic spirit at all. In fact, he sleeps though every single event with the exception of women’s beach volleyball. He can be in a dead sleep, not so much as stirring as I jump on the bed and yell “Go! Go! Go! Go! Go!” for hours at a time, but the second the announcer whispers the name Misty May, he’s awake and watching avidly. And I do not think his interest is in her dedication to her craft either.

But how can you not get caught up in all the emotion of the Olympics? I mean, I cry when they are on the medal stand, no matter which country is up there. I gasp and accidentally yell profanity when one of the gymnasts misses the bar after a release. I sing along with our national anthem, and study interviews of the women’s volleyball team to figure out how they manage to keep those little shorts from riding up and giving them wedgies on national television, because heaven knows I need to know that secret. (Note to Nicole Davis: Help a sister out here. Is it tape? Elastic shorts? Superior non-short eating buns?)

Anyway, that’s what I’ll be doing tonight and every night for the next few weeks. I’ll be cheering on the athletes, and soaking up their excitement and dedication. I’ll be yelling and cheering and booing and gasping and crying and waving my arms around at 2am while the rest of the house sleeps.

I am an Olympics junky.

Why We Never Have Fresh Fruit In The House

Tony: Hey, I'm running to the store. Do you need anything?

Me: Yes, some bananas.

Tony: Okay.

Me: Wait, make sure they're the greenest bananas they have. The ones that are already yellow go brown to quickly. And they get mushy. I don't like the mushy ones. So get green ones.

Tony: Green bananas. Got it.

Me: And make sure you get at least five so I can have one every day this week for breakfast.

Tony: Five Green Bananas. Got it.

Me: But don't get a bunch of like 50 either. No more than 6.

Tony: 5 or 6 green bananas. Check. Anything else?

Me: Grapes.

Tony: What?

Me: I also want a bunch of red seedless grapes.

Tony: (big sigh). Grapes and bananas. Okay.

Me: Not just any grapes. They have to be red seedless. And make sure that they’re the biggest ones you can find. They’ve only had really small grapes lately, and those just don’t taste as good. So make sure they’re the biggest ones you can find. And look under the bag to make sure that they ones on the bottom aren’t all smashed.


Me: And…wait. What are you doing? Why’d you take your shoes off? I thought you were going to the store?

Hunt For History

Howdy Internets! Did everybody have a good weekend? We had the most bea-u-ti-ful weather here this weekend! Normally, August is all so disgustingly hot and humid that if you take even two steps away from the climate-controlled safety of your air-conditioner your face will melt and your clothes will spontaneously combust and then where will you be? That’s right, naked and with a melted face. And we live with that, because we are Knoxvillians, and that is what we do. But for some strange meteorological reason, this weekend dawned bright and blue and crisp and cool (cool being a high of 85 degrees instead of 98 degrees). And the sun was shining, and a breeze was blowing (a breeze! Here? Before November? Shocking!) and the air had a touch of fall crispness that makes you want to run outside and do something fantastic.

So we did.

The TPO Knoxville Regional Bicycle Program is hosting a bike riding series for the summer. Once a month, they lead various bike tours and themed what-nots that involve riding around on your bike. This weekend, they did the downtown Hunt for History scavenger hunt, and Tony I and participated. (I figured that being downtown every day, I’d be a natural at this). So we threw our bikes in the back of the truck and took off for downtown.

They handed us a sheet with pictures of various Knoxville landmarks and trivia questions like, “When was this church built?” and “How many ladies are painted in the windows of this pub?” and sent us on our way. I recognized most of the downtown landmarks, but I was fuzzy on the Old City and West next to UT. And I recognized a lot of buildings, but couldn’t quite remember where I had seen them before. By the museum? Or the post office? So despite my careful route planning, we backtracked quite a bit.

But that was okay, because we had a fabulous time finding everything, and the weather (have I mentioned the weather?) was just perfect. And I learned a lot about a city that I spend every day in, but never really LOOKED at before. So that was neat. It took us about 2 hours of leisurely riding to do the whole course, and only the last two hills bothered me. (I am sooo much stronger than when we were riding last year!)

The only downside is that my nether regions are killing me today. Even with all the padding on my derriere, my bicycle seat still managed to bruise me. (The bike club people say that this is normal, and that with continued riding, you build up a muscle to pad those delicate areas. Great, just what I need…more padding!)

All in all though, we had a blast. I highly recommend my fellow Knoxville buddies to join the group. All abilities are welcome. I think September’s outing is a ride through some historic neighborhoods.

We’ll see you there.

The First Game

I had my first softball game last night, and I have to admit that it was more fun that I thought it would be. Since I read an article recently that people who set goals are more successful, I decided to set some very reasonable goals for myself, which included:

Don't throw up
Don't strike out
Don't trip and fall while running
Don't throw the ball away and
Don't throw up

I wasn't sure I was going to be able to accomplish the first (and fifth) ones, because the pre-game jitters were really something to behold. I can honestly say that I was more nervous about this game than I was defending my thesis, on my last job interview, or getting married. That and I ate meatballs for dinner before the game. Don't ask me why.

But once I got to the field, I realized that the heavens had smiled down upon me, and had actually cut me a break for once.

First of all, the game was 6pm, which means that the sun was strategically positioned...any place that I looked. It was like the entire field was just in silhouette- much like playing softball in an ipod commercial. The other players grumbled about this, but I was delighted, because it meant that I could claim that I lost any missed ball "in the sun". And no one can say anything! Because it's the sun! Can't do anything about that! (This softball thing just got a whole lot easier). I lost balls "in the sun". I lost bats "in the sun". I lost entire people "in the sun". It was fabulous!

I was also stationed out in right field (which I had been campaigning heavily for), since no one ever hits stuff out there. (Well, there was this one left handed guy, but we mostly walked him whenever he came up). There were only two balls hit my direction the entire night. I didn't catch either on the fly, but I did manage to "stop the ball" (which translates into it bounced up and hit me in the shin and yes, it will bruise). But I managed to throw it to the second baseman, and not over her head, which was a definite plus for me, and goal number 4. Other than that, I spent my time sending a telepathic mantra to the batter that went "Not over here. Not over here. Not over here". For the most part, I think it worked.

The only other hurdle was batting. I understand that coaches will put their best batters up first, so the fact that I was batting 11th makes since. Actually, I'm not half bad at batting. I can hit the ball. I just tend to hit it back to the pitcher. My first time up to bat, I swung at the very first pitch. I wasn’t planning on it, but he tossed an easy lob at me, and I swung without thinking. The good news is I hit it! The bad news is that I hit it right back to the pitcher! Technically that makes me out, but I was celebrating anyway because I achieved goals 1, 2, and 5.

The second time I was up to bat, I was feeling marginally better. I knew the first pitch he threw was low, so I wasn’t going to swing. Unfortunately, my brain forgot to tell my arms that because even though the brain recognized it as a bad pitch, the arms were so excited that they couldn’t help themselves and swung anyway. Never mind that it was after the catcher caught the ball. (This, by the way, is still a strike no matter how you argue that you were just “practicing”). Picky umpires.

The second pitch was better, which was good because the arms were swinging anyway (having obviously not learned their lesson from the first pitch), and I managed to connect and hit the ball straight over to the second baseman. This normally would have been an out too, except that the second baseman “lost it in the sun” and bobbled it. I ran. I still would have been out, but then the second baseman also lost the first baseman in the sun, because he threw it over her head. First base! First base! I’m on first base! I was so excited! (I thought a victory dance would have been over doing it, but a small victory wiggle may have slipped out). I was all content to hang out on first, but then the guy after me hit the ball, and I was off running again! I tried to stop at second, but the third base coach was pinwheeling his arms like crazy, so I ran to third. Third base! Three times as good as first base! I don’t think I’ve ever been on third base before! (I don’t think I’ve ever gotten a base hit period). I was trying to tell this very amazing fact to the third base coach, but I was interrupted by the crack of the bat again, and he was yelling “Run! Run! Run!” so I ran. And ya’ll, I scored a run! In my very first game! Annnnnd, I did not trip at all! I’m beginning to see why people play this stupid game.

We lost in the last inning, but it doesn’t matter. What matters is that for one hour, the softball gods indulged me and I didn’t make a complete fool of myself.

And actually managed to have a smidgeon of fun while doing it.

This Post Was Brought To You By The Letter V, As In "Vanity"

Today I'd just like to do a shout out to random basketball playing guy who introduced himself as Victor, and who saved yesterday from being a totally crappy day by actually leaving his basketball game and chasing me down after my aerobics class to ask for my phone number.

Sorry Victor, I'm married, but your ego boost did wonders in brightening my day.

And while Victor cried himself to sleep last night for being 6 years too late, my totally vain self grinned all the way home to brag to Tony about it.

And to you guys too.

Cause the hotness? I have it. And this time, my rear end wasn't even soaked with a looks-like-I-wet-myself sweat stain!


Sorry I've been AWOL. My computer has a virus, and it shut me down. (There should be a special place reserved in hell for people who create computer viruses). Anyway, Norton found it, but apparently it still managed to cause some havoc. I'm still not at 100%, so if the posts are spotty (and short), that's the reason.

And may the person who created this virus die a slow painful death involving fire ants and paper cuts.