Sunday, April 30, 2006

where in the world are

sterling and carrie going?

(roughly to the tune of where in the world is carmen sandiego, because, well, it is.)

So, not Rome/Florence, not China, though both guesses are in the right hemisphere. More guesses? There's a shiny quarter at stake...

and a HINT. The country that we're visiting can be found here. ;)

Thursday, April 27, 2006

scary with a side of speed scrabble

so, yesterday afternoon.
It's 530.

I leave work.
I stop by food lion to buy spinach.
I go home.
I park, gather my belongings, take them inside
I turn off the alarm, turn on the lights, put the spinach in the fridge.
I gather the trash I neglected to take out in the morning, along with the recycling, and walk the couple hundred feet or less to the dumpster.
I deposit said items and return from whence I came.
On the way back I think, “y’know, it probably would have been a good idea to lock the door.
Oh well.

I reach our apartment, go inside, shut the door and promptly begin screaming.
Combined with crying.
And gasping for breath.
Because a large figure has just come towards me from behind the door.


I notice that this figure looks a lot like Otto....
Who has just tried to kill me for the second time during the month of April.

He was quite proud of himself for the millisecond it took for him to notice that I was 1)crying and 2)shaking.

It took a little bit for me to stop crying and even longer to stop the shaking. As it turned out, Otto had come home a day early, and had arrived at our apartment in time to surprise me. And boy, did he. At first he’d hid upstairs, but his plans were foiled when I took the garbage out. So he came down and hid behind the hinge-side of the door. I think I would have been okay if he had just stepped out and said “boo!” Or “hi Carrie.” Etc. But the coming at me was what did it. Man, oh, man.

Needless to say, I got mint chocolate chip icecream and earthfare chocolate milk out of the deal, so we’re even-ish. And I felt much better after wine, spaghetti, wine, pesto bread, wine, chocolate, wine and speed scrabble with the girls. Oh, and speed scrabble? Awesome. And bear in mind that Scrabble is one of my top five favorite games of all time (along with spades, gin, fandango and pente), so it's saying a lot that I'm willing to entertain the notion that there's more than one way to play a game of scrabble.

Instructions: for two or more players (three is better than two, methinks). With five or more players you need two sets of scrabble tiles. Empty tiles out onto a table, letter side down. Put board and letter holders back in the box, as you won’t need them. Each player draws seven tiles and keeps them face-down until someone says “go.” Arrange your seven tiles into words like you would on a scrabble board (so they have to intersect or whatever). The first player to assemble their tiles says ,”go” and ALL players grab another tile—now you all have eight. Repeat. You can re-arrange your letters however and whenever you want during the game, so that you can use all of your tiles. Once all the tiles are drawn (or the number leftover is not a multiple of the number of players) the play ends when someone successfully uses all of their tiles and says, “go.” Then you count up your points like you would in real scrabble, subtracting any unused tiles from your total score. Play again and again, adding up the points or not. However you like. The beauty is in the speed of the game, since sometimes real scrabble can be tiresome. Of course, you still want to form the highest point words you can, so there’s skill in it too. We had fun.

I'm jumpin' jack flash

it's a gas! gas! gas!
wait, what?  so $100 is supposed to make it all better?  lessee...if gas is, say $3 per gallon, and it should have been, say, $2.65 per gallon (less, perhaps, but let's just do the math)...that means that this $100 would make up for 286 gallons of gas.  But factor in that we use about 3 gallons of gas per day per capita, and the average family unit is 4.14ish (two parents and 2.14 kids or whatever), then that means...carry the one....jack and shit, and jack left town.   if they even give it.  because that's making up for (on average) roughly 23 days worth of gas. which ain't much. of course, it's more for a single person like me, who uses more like 1-2 gallons of gas most days (well, except for on trips, but that's why it averages out to 3, I'm sure).  and it's a little better then, since it would help for about 95 days, which is most of the summer.  but c'mon.
a tax break isn't an awful plan either.  perhaps they'll do both.

Wednesday, April 26, 2006


that's what my pocket could be saying.  to my hand, that is.  not that my pocket speaks.  though sometimes I do think my hand has a mind of its own.  not that I mind.  tee hee.  and hmm.
first of all, the cabinet is mine--all mine!  insert evil laugh here! 
I'm getting rid of those pulls on the door elpronto though, because I think they're ugly. And if I can find appropriate new metal I'm gonna use it (though I'll likely keep the old). 
and I called about having it professionally stripped and refinished--yikes!  more than TWICE what I'm paying for the cabinet.  So for now I think I'm just going to repaint it (in any case it needs a new coat, at the very least).  Perhaps a similar green for simplicity sake, but perhaps not.  Color opinions will be needed soon, I'm sure! But even repainting it is going to increase the cost of the stripping/refinishing by like $100, potentially.  Of course, all these numbers come from one person over the phone, but their reviews online are very positive, and I don't think I'm going to get it for a whole lot less.
I could just have 'em strip it and refinish it myself, and that would be cheaper, but apparently it's very hard to get the color to come back out from mahogany.  So, um, yeah.  Guess I'm going to do a little light how-to reading and then decide.
And a point.
Every guy I've spoken to has told me to strip/refinish it.
Every girl has said I should just give it a new coat of paint.
there are no exceptions to this rule thus far.
weird, eh?
Oh, and one more exciting thing?!?  Sterling and I are going on a crazy wonderful trip in September.  To guess where...
time for spaghetti and garlic bread with the girls. mmmmmm.
oh, and look for some KayDee bragging in the near future!

Monday, April 24, 2006

pretty, pretty!

So, on Wednesday at 10am I'm calling to buy THIS!

I'm going to see if I can strip the paint off of it (well, pay someone to do that, really, because it looks hard) but if it's super expensive I'm gonna paint it a different color and maybe take the paint off later. I LOVE it. L-O-V-E. Otto likes it too, and we've found where we'll put it. My Granny even told me to buy it! I think I could paint it any color at all! I won't do it now, but couldn't you picture it as red or yellow or brown or blue or black or gray or pink or cream or whatever? Or, of course, natural wood.

anyhoo, fun!

Sunday, April 23, 2006

i think i may be losing my mind.

because I'm about to go buy a china cabinet. a 1930's chippendale-style painted mahogany china cabinet. that is so beautiful. i'm taking my camera and a measuring tape. yikes!

Friday, April 21, 2006

she's a conquest in heels

so in touch with style and grace
when all the fools in school go ooo-ooo
I wish they would all go huff paint
instead of making plays for her
ooh! we got to see the brunettes last night!  Otto felt a little better, so we went.  It was the smallest show I've ever been to (okay, well except for the one at the cave, but that's not a band with a record label, so I don't think it counts). the venue had a limit of ninety-nine people.  we were seventy-six and seventy-seven.  we didn't see the opening act, schooner, but we did see  the brunettes! and they played my fave song (loopy loopy love) and a cheery-catchy new one from their album that will be released in the fall ( b.a.b.y.--it had hand motions!).  very very fun! seriously, you should you should check this out. they're so good! 
also, i wanted to let everyone know that in many circumstances whistling in public is a violation of other people's rights/space/ears.  i find it offensive.  mostly because if i were singing in the lab/office i'd likely be asked to stop. but the whistlers keep on whistling.  while they work.  maybe the seven dwarves were wrong, eh?
today begins a weekend/week of volunteering, running errands, perhaps a pedicure, a trip to a bargain barn, watching charlie and the chocolate factory and some more gilmore girls season one and--if I'm lucky--some sushi.  mmmmmmmmm sushi.

Thursday, April 20, 2006

where are all your college friends when you need them?

so, when I was in college I'm sure I would have told someone asking me this, "no, I need to study."  and then I would have been talked into it by Adrienne McVey or Misha Baker or someone else, and off we would have gone.  the convincing would have been easier since it's a thursday.

but I just found out an hour ago that The Brunettes are playing in Raleigh tonight and I've no one to go with.  otto doesn't feel so hot, plus tomorrow begins six days of travelling for him.  i asked five KDs, and they all already have plans of some type or just plain can't go.  i will be calling a durham friend right after work since her number is in my office.  

but I wanna go!

when did we all become old people?  what happened in the last four-five years that suddenly made us respect our sleeping habits and be responsible?  i mean, i know we have car payments and gas is eleventy billion dollars a gallon and we have to pay rent and take our animals to the vet and all, but really!?!

and i can't go by myself because downtown raleigh just isn't the place to go alone.  ess-eye-gee-aych.

Wednesday, April 19, 2006

carrie v. the counties of the state of north carolina.

so, wow. mattie is expensive. more so than that honda i used to have. yikes! but worth every penny. maybe not every hassle, but definitely every penny.

i got my NC vehicle tax bill a few days ago. it says WAKE county on it. I live in a city called Morrisville, part of which is in WAKE county, and part of which is in DURHAM county. I don't set these things up, the state does.

I live in DURHAM county. By like 1500 ft, but by george, it's DURHAM county.

sooo, I check out my statement, and notice that it's from WAKE county. Being the responsible citizen that I am (and knowing that taxes can be cheaper in DURHAM county than WAKE county) I call up the WAKE people and sit on hold for the operator for ten minutes before I get ed up and hang up. Thank goodness for speaker phones.

anyhow, today I decide to start anew since my tax is due May 1. I call the same number again but select options instead, hoping to go for the "i'm not sure if you can help me but..." route. I get a person. A real, live, breathing person! I explain my plight.

Politely, I might add.

to which she responds, well, let me check your address...they MAILED it to me for pete's sake.

she does, it's correct, and she says, well, I've made a note in my system.

I say I want to make sure that I don't get fined for not paying the bill, and is DURHAM going to send me another one, and how do I make sure this is right, and why does my "location" address say 0 Unknown Drive? She tells me she doesn't know, that I need to call WAKE county and find out how I arrange to get another bill.

I do the legwork, y'see.


So I call WAKE's other number (mind you, I got the first number off of wake-gov something or other). I speak to a very helpful but slow-talking lady who is befuddled by my sitch. It seems that DURHAM sent my stuff to WAKE to have WAKE bill me. When I inquired about the 0 Unknown Drive, she told me that when addys show up like that it's because they aren't in WAKE county.

I say:
"so, let me get this straight...
Durham sent you my info so you, Wake could send me a bill. And you, Wake, sent me one even though my address showed up as not in your system. And now I, the citizen, have to make two phone calls to ask about why the DMV hasn't hooked up with the county-line-drawer-peoples? So who do I pay? And how do I have a record of it?"

I'm especially frustrated because Ms. Recorded voice has told me that if I move out of WAKE county and I've recieved a bill I have to pay it in full. Something about correcting it next year or in some circumstances owing both counties.

I explain to the still nice lady that yes, I lived in DURHAM county in January. I lived there beginning last May! And she said oh, well then, I'll notify DURHAM, I'll cancel this bill and they should send you another one, easy as pie. (yes, a pie full of really sharp needles and rocks, I thought) I verified like five times that I was off the hook for now, and she confirmed it for me.


who knew counties were such a hassle? i mean, countRies go to war. but apparently counties just argue via the mail.

Tuesday, April 18, 2006


oooh....! so annoyed with hotmail.
I think I'm going to get rid of it and use gmail or yahoo instead. grrr. what do they mean my particular server is down?  I mean, sure, it's free, but lots of people kind of depend on it.  And I'm a sort of email-a-holic. 
Oh, and I'm getting to those names people.  I'll be doing it tonight when I get home.  Because work is kind of labor intensive, and I want to read and/or write math problems during my lunch.
Have you read The Red Tent?  If you haven't, you should.  It's heartwarming and sad and moving and informative and the characters are wonderful.  Seriously, read it.
and boycott hotmail.  grr, hotmail.

Monday, April 17, 2006

survey says?

1) Reply with your name and I'll respond with something random about you.
2) I'll tell you what song/movie reminds me of you.
3) I'll tell you what your superpower is.
4) I'll say something that only makes sense to you and me.
5) I'll tell you my first memory of you.
6) I'll tell you what animal you remind me of.
7) I'll ask you something that I've always wondered about you.
8) If I do this for you, you must post this on your journal.

see, I did #1 on two other people's blogs/LJ's/xangas/whatevers, and now I'm required to do #8.

happy easter monday. that holiday that's print-worthy on calendars but doesn't mean crap to work vacay schedules.

Monday, April 10, 2006

offroading was so much fun, except for the almost dying part.

so, flashback...

after a jam-packed week of working long too-busy-for-lunch hours, birthday dinners, surveys, meetings and a kick ass DCFC and FF concert, Saturday began. We cleaned and ran errands, and I spent a lot of time in the Target return line. I went to our Leadership Workshop (VERY Productive!) and had mm mmmm mmmmm sushi with the girls. I returned home to clean/straighten things before Dan and Cory arrived at 1230am! (and I cleaned out a closet, which I'm quite proud of!). We had some tea and went to bed.

we got up earlyish and left for Uwharrie. I made a half-apron on the trip. It's from a target fabric naprkin and some bias tape and yellow floss/string. tres cute. see?

We drove around, took cute/pretty pictures, went on trails and the like. It was HORRIBLY dry though. We came home covered in dust and were rather parched the whole time. We watched some guys try and get their rigs up some impossible rocks, and could even see where one guy had just taken the tread off of his tires. And we saw a little gecko. And we were pleased that the boys weren't trying to do the crazy stunts like those other folks. There were some tricky spots on the trip, and I got some fun pics of Otto spotting Dan on his way down. And then it happened.

We're going down the path, and it's a pretty narrow hill. Ruby, Otto's jeep, probably has a foot and a half or so of wiggle room on either side. To our left is a big mud/dirt wall and to our right are some trees and foliage about a foot thick, and behind that a, I don't know, let's say 1,789,054,685,103 foot drop, roughly. We're going along, and Otto's hugging the wall, driving Ruby close to it, though he's not aware of this 1.0*10^97 foot drop. And we go over some big rocks, and Otto puts on Ruby's emergency break and gets out of the car to spot Dan as he passes them.

and then it happened. Ruby kept going. Her emergency break had been slow to catch, and Otto thought it already had caught, but nope. Not at all. So, Carrie's buckled in, screaming "Otto!" and trying to reach the brake pedal. Which she couldn't. And since Ruby was on a kinda steep incline, Carrie couldn't unbuckle her seat belt.


all ended up well. the terror lasted I'd say somewhere in the range of 15 hours, or more like ten seconds, maybe. and I grabbed ahold of the emergency brake, pushed in the button and pulled harder and Ruby stopped a split second before Otto was able to hit the brake pedal. Everyone was fine, but I was shaky for a bit. thankfully I did not have to change my pants, as all I had to change into was a half-finished-at-that-point apron, and that's certainly not G or even PG.


Pizza was the dinner of choice, and per usual it was de-lish. And I finally(!) got around to watching Walk the Line. Which was so good I may jsut watch it again tonight before I have to return it. Dan and Cory and Otto enjoyed it too.

Saturday, April 08, 2006

siamese tulips

last night was the death cab / franz ferdinand concert. we had an AWESOME time, and Franz put on quite a show for us, though DC sounded better. does FF do the drummer thing everywhere? oh so cool!!! As soon as we left I told Otto I wished we'd seen 'em at Cain's because it's a better venue than Cameron Indoor. Oh well!

last night I felt inspired to take pictures. i'd noticed my siamese tulips as soon as I put them in the vases, so I took pictures in the AM.

and then when I got home the tulips had opened up a lot! so I took more pictures. and apparently Gobi and Hazel both wanted to be in them. Ha!

Friday, April 07, 2006

what gives?

so, I'm in a complain-ee moody. because I'm exhausted. i know that my problems aren't big in the grand scheme of things, but right now I just don't understand.

what is it about human beings that makes them think it's okay to play favorites, to be inconsiderate, to change their feelings on a whim? to be unkind to others, and to just be so damn rude. and blatant. rude and blatant.


i consider myself to be fortunate, and to have many friends. but as of late a few of these friends seem to wake up one day and say in a chipper-but-somehow-also-delusional-voice, "hey, you know what? today's the day that I'm going to start behaving differently to carrie. let's see if she notices, and how long it takes her before she's not so interested in being friends anymore. ooh, that sounds fun. now, where's my how-to-be-a-bad-friend handbook?...oh, right here, next to my mean pills..." now, sometimes there's something that contributes to this issue. and sometimes it's my fault, or sometimes it theirs, or sometimes it's both of us. sometimes shit happens. but sometimes it doesn't.

now, I am not the jealous type, generally. and if I feel myself getting jealous I try to remind myself that this, too shall pass. or that I'm lucky that I have all of my arms and legs and toes in the right quantity and place, and I'm not violently allergic to or afraid of anything, and I have people who love me. But my "best friend" made a cake for another one of our friends. This is all fine. Well, except for the fact that this friend didn't even acknowledge my birthday in october. no card, no call, no nothing. The previous year we spent most of it together celebrating. And I've spent both of her birthdays with her and given her little presents to boot. I sound like a jealous seven year old, I'm sure. But it's not about the cake, it's not about the gifts, and it's not about who she gave the cake to. I mean, I like her, and I'm glad she got a cake! But it's that something has changed, and the cake baker didn't bother to tell me. Either that, or I'm being waaay too sensitive. Which, per usual, is a possibility.

and it frustrates me that people do this.

if you have a boy/girlfriend, and you don't want to see that person anymore, or you don't want to maintain the same type of relationship, you are obligated by manners and courtesy to in some way give that person the heave-ho. why does that not exist in friendship? if it's a relationship, it's taboo to quit calling or keep cancelling or file a restraining order without conveying to the person that you want your interaction with one another to change. but it's okay to do that with a friend. I mean, it's hard to say "I'm sorry, but I don't want to be your best friend anymore." But it is okay to say, "It upsets me when you do ____." Because I kind of feel like most of the time someone has upset someone else, and that's where it stems from. People grow apart, sure. But not in a short-term friendship. That takes awhile to happen, and it takes a lot of non-contact too.

and generally, friends are more crucial to your life. they're your support. your source of giggles and inside jokes and cute pictures and fashion sense and advice and cute sunglasses and hugs. yet one day they can wake up and change their mind. and slowly wear away at your patience. and your heart.

and it's weird, and it sucks, and since I can't do anything about how others behave I'm just going to not do that myself. i believe in the golden rule. i wish more people would.

Wednesday, April 05, 2006

very interesting

(to be pronounced veeery en-tear-est-ink)

Today, at two minutes and three seconds after 1 o'clock the time and date will be 01:02:03 04/05/06

I might be a little off on this one, but one projection of energy demands said that we will need to add 1000 square miles of solar panels a year until 2050 in ord
er to accomodate all the energy that will be needed then. Know what this is roughly equal to? The areas of the roofs of the all of the houses that will need to be built.

And finally, did you know that the birth rate is, roughly, inversely proportional to the level of education of the woman? And that 2.1 births per female is the maximum sustainable birth rate?

some little factoids for hump day...

Tuesday, April 04, 2006

sing ta na na ta na na na

so, today I went to this crazy expensive conference (the two days cost my company like a million dollars, word has it) and I changed clothes twice. I wore my dress clothes to the conference, changed into jeans to do work in the lab, changed back into the dress clothes to go back to the conference and then back into jeans for more lab work. I went back and forth since the conference was at UNC's friday center only 10ish minutes from my work. soooo, one of the clothes changes I noticed something.

she got hurricanes on the soles of her shoes

I bought my cute new shoes (nine west heels rawk!) right before the new orleans trip, and I wore these black ones A LOT. (so much so that the pain of wearing them seemed picture-worthy after my wine, three glasses of champagne and two gin and tonics at the wedding reception) And I went to Pat O's all three nights I was there, and you know what they serve? Hurricanes. Like crazy.

I also bought these most wonderful green crocodile shoes. Someone who shall remain nameless actually asked me if they make shoes our of crocodiles. I explained to him that they might, but these aren't crocodile, really. He said, in a very seven-year-old voice--but they make eelskin boots! ha!

so, um, I noticed today during one of my multiple costume changes that I had pink spots all over the soles of my shoes.

Also, I've decided I'm a big fan of a few things.

~saying bless you. (even if the person sneezes all the time!)
~being honest
~talking to your friends regularly even if it's just a quick convo
~being a volunteer if you like the organization
~sparkling water with fruit juice
~kitty cats
~planning ahead

And I've also decided that I'm annoyed by
~people who don't say excuse me, i'm sorry, pardon me, oops, my fault, mea culpa...
~people who change their behavior towards you for no real reason
~people who don't say thank you
~people who wear dress shoes with gym pants
~pine straw
~people who say "oh don't those hurt your feet" when they see my high heels. hullo? seriously, now, would I wear them if they hurt? maybe. would I tell you? likely not, unless you were a friend of mine, or unless I'd been wearing them for seven hours and walking all around new orleans a distance that would make flip flops or tennies painful too.

Ooh, and I am loving all the nice things people are saying about my New Orleans pictures--especially the one on my profiles on myspace and facebook. Thank you, thank you, for making my day!

And I could say Oo oo oo
And everybody here would know
What I was talking about
I mean everybody here would know exactly
What I was talking about
Talking about diamonds

People say I’m crazy
I got diamonds on the soles of my shoes
Well that’s one way to lose
These walking blues
Diamonds on the soles of your shoes

is it cheating to try to sell something on my blog?

Caribbean Tickets for Two!. Want a chance to win a pair of tickets to the Caribbean? They're coach no-blackout tickets on American Airlines to anywhere in the Caribbean. Raffle tickets are $5 a piece or five tickets for $20. All proceeds benefit Prevent Child Abuse North Carolina (PCA-NC). The winner will be announced on April 22nd at Picture This, PCA-NC's signature fundraiser. In conjuction with PCA-NC, the Raleigh-Durham Alumnae Association of Kappa Delta is organizing and holding this raffle. You don't have to be present to win! This purchase is a tax-deductible donation to PCA-NC.
Just email me if you want to get any.  And if not that's a-o-k.  But I thought I'd ask.  It's worth $20 to me to see if I can win 'em....

Monday, April 03, 2006

...making love to his tonic and gin....

so, Otto and I had a gin party this weekend. mmm mmm mmm i love gin. i even made everyone toast dustin devore for introducing me to the delectable drink.

it was a pepsi challenge of sorts. bombay sapphire vs. tanqueray ten. and look. my favorite won. well, won in the world anyhow. most people liked bombay sapphire better 'cause it's sweeter. gustaaf was the only one who did the test blind, and he said he liked tanqueray ten better, even though he was all about bombay sapphire prior to that. we got a good laugh out of him once he picked his fave, and he covered it up nicely saying he liked the tanq-ten better because it was harsher... ha!


best quotes. "you should be on gustaaf's team because he's the most cock-sure."

Otto, "purr, purr." Katie, "a bull?"

"How was I supposed to get one-man-band out of that?"

"And I added the chopsticks for China!" -Ben about the drawing of the Great Wall of China he had to do

Otto had to act out kitty litter AND be Britney Spears, Chris and I had to determine whether it was easier to balance with your eyes closed or your fingers in your ears, and Ariel made a fried egg out of some really gross Cranium clay, Ben has the weirdest whistle ever (with his mouth open--he looks possessed!). Katie tried to show Otto how to do kitty litter better, and Audra thought we were all pretty funny. We had an excellent time.

Oh, and while cleaning up my cookie tray slid to the back of my oven on the bottom and got stuck, and I had to remove the drawer to get it out. and now I know where ALL of Hazel's mice went. There were thirty-seven toys, two pens and some serious dust bunnies back there! don't worry, the underneath-the-oven-area is clean now...

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