Wednesday, January 26, 2005

Lip Balm, Kitty Kisses, 1099s, Typewriters, and Carbon Paper--Not Necessarily In That Order

Yesterday was a very long day. Once a year I use two things--a typewriter and carbon paper. I hate both. Even more, I hate using them to type 1099s which I also experience only once a year. But it IS January, and it IS the law after all. So dutifully I got all my info together earlier in the month and yesterday was the big day.

Why you ask, in this age of computers is anyone still using a typewriter much less carbon paper?!? Some of you may even be asking "WHAT is carbon paper?" Well, I don't feel it necessary to educate you on this tonight. Go look it up in an encyclopedia... errr... on your encyclopedia on line. They may have pictures and an explanation there. I will tell you though, no explanation can take the place of experiencing carbon paper rubbings on your hands and clothing first hand. It's just one of those things.

You see, my computer program has not been set up to handle doing 1099's correctly. This is a situation which I have finally figured out how to remedy. This time next year, I will be smiling because I will be doing the 1099s using the updated computer program. I will buy a bottle of champagne to celebrate the occasion next year. I am sure that I will be able to find some co-workers to help me celebrate.

At least I can now do my W2s on the computer. In all fairness to typewriters, they still do have some uses for which a computer cannot compete. However, those uses should become obsolete and that would solve the problem and make a lot of people (me especially) happier and less stressed. I am way too used to typing on a computer keyboard...switching to an old typewriter once a year just doesn't work...especially because you cannot make any mistakes with carbon paper on those government forms!

So back to my long day yesterday... During the earlier part of the day I finished preparing the biweekly, semimonthly, and monthly payrolls. Once everyone actually turned in their time sheets this wasn't too difficult. I even called in the tax deposit early for next Monday. I listened to the maintenance man. I sorted through numerous receipts that various people had left on my desk... some with a notation of who they were from and what they were for... and some not. I answered several telephone messages... very pleasantly, I might add. I listened to the maintenance man. I processed numerous bills, placed a call to California because someone had mistakenly ordered 500 copies of something instead of the customary 50 (which lasts 2 years), and processed various incoming payments. I looked at my piles of filing to be done and decided to leave that for another day (maybe another year?) I stopped for a cup of tea. I made some necessary photocopies, put postage on the outgoing bill payments, listened to the assistant maintenance man, listened to the cook, listened to my boss ("mmmm this is soooo good"), took several calls on my cell phone while unsuccessfully balancing various pertinent papers in my lap, listened to another co-worker while picking up the papers I had spilled all over the floor, and after running an important errand to another building (getting a soda from the soda machine to fortify myself) borrowed the keys to my office from my boss since I had locked my office door with the keys still on my desk. After my love affair with the typewriter and carbon paper, I stuffed all of the W2s and 1099s into their respective envelopes. Sometime during the day I ate lunch (including a very yummy baked apple). Did I mention that I listened to the maintenance man? By the time I was done it was going on 8 p.m., and I was exhausted.

Ok, so I finally got home. I was too tired to write in my own blog, but I did take the time to peruse some that I like to read. I checked my own blog for comments, looked to see who had visited my site, and fixed myself a wonderful cup of hot chocolate. I brushed my teeth and got ready for bed. On my way to the bedroom I stopped and picked up my Burt's Bees Beeswax Lip Balm (great stuff) to put on my slightly chapped lips. After applying the lip balm, I turned on the TV in the bedroom, climbed into bed and settled in to watch the news. No sooner had I gotten comfortable and set the timer on the TV then along came the resident Siamese, Koko. After pawing the covers and taking about 5 minutes to settle down... just about the time I was starting to doze off, Koko discovered the lip balm and proceeded to lick it off my lips. Coming unexpectedly, it was quite a surprising sensation. I have seen what my cats eat. There was still a slight aroma of his last meal emanating from his mouth. I groaned, rolled over, grabbed a slurp of water from the bottle next to the bed, and closed my eyes to try to drift off to sleep while wondering if there was any hope that the maintenance man might just possibly have the next day off.

Sunday, January 23, 2005

Piercings, Tattoos and Other Body Art

I just don't get it! It is some sort of a mental block. I wear eye makeup and lipstick. I have pierced ears. Somehow, my brain stops there. I am repulsed by tattoos, body piercings other than one or two ear piercings, excessive makeup, and brightly colored wild hair.

So, logically, I ask myself what the difference is between two ear piercings and three or four? Why is it acceptable to me to have pierced ears, but eyebrows, lips, noses, etc. are not? Why is it okay for me to dye my hair to cover the gray, but bright red or blue or green seems outlandish? I laugh at little old ladies who are "blue hairs" and older men who dye their hair. Why do I consider it okay for women to dye their hair, but I consider it silly or vain for men to do it? I think tattoos are ugly and dark Goth-style makeup ridiculous. Why?

Think about it. Different cultures all over the world have their own concept of beauty. What is it that determines our view of beauty and acceptable body art? I can remember when I was growing up thinking that my mothers red lipstick was downright ugly and garish. We wore more natural colors or, for awhile, very light pinks. I would never have thought red would be acceptable. Kind of like the avocado greens of the 70s that we loved for awhile and that we were sure would never come back because of how ugly it was. How could we ever have decorated our homes with that!

Tonight I ran in to a 19 year old guy that I hadn't seen in a year or so. He was sporting some new lip rings and was very excited by the tattoo that he was going to have finished this next week. I was distracted by the silver on his face, but I really like this kid! Do lip rings make him a different person? If I didn't know him already, I probably wouldn't have taken the time to get past the lip decor. I had to think about that.

I contemplated the reasons that people decorate themselves in ways that I would consider too much. Sometimes it is a right of passage from adolescent dependence on parents to a more independent adult status. Sometimes it is just for attention. Sometimes, however, I think that people do it because they actually like it! I think tattoos are ugly, but a lot of other people don't. Tattoos can be looked at as art. I just prefer mine on the wall. The art on my body is limited to some makeup, some jewelry, clothing and hair dye. So who am I to tell someone else what their view of beauty should be?

I still don't get it. I am a logical person. Why do I make these differentiations? I will try to get past this. I will use the style of body art that I am comfortable with on myself. I will try to not let outward appearances rob me of the opportunity to get to know some really great people. If I don't, I know that it will probably be my loss.

I wonder... will others who see my more conservative style label me and allow that to block them from an opportunity to get to know me? I hope not. But, to be realistic, there are lots of people of all types out there with their own style of mental block. At least I can work on my own.

Now for that mice are cute, rats are creepy mindset...

Friday, January 21, 2005

Mmmm..... fishing charts Posted by Hello

Thursday, January 20, 2005

Looking for fish Posted by Hello

Captain Koko Posted by Hello

Scud and Koko Posted by Hello

Scud Posted by Hello

River Cat

I have two cats. One is 20 lbs of sleeping cat. His name is Scud. He is deaf, very sweet, not very bright (10 watts), and, if he is awake, very hungry. My other cat is a Siamese. His name is Koko. He is not normal. Most people would say that Siamese cats are a litttle different than your normal everyday cat. However, he is far more than a little different.

As a kitten he learned to enjoy being used as a bongo drum. If tossed across the room into a chair, he would coming running back to be thrown again... as often as the human participant was willing. Very often he would decide he was a parrot and jump up to sit on the shoulder of a usually very surpised human. Frequent tossing up in the air was considered routine. He did not sleep during the day because he did not want to miss anything. If an empty chair at the table was available, he would sit in it and enjoy the conversation. Anytime we went out of town in the car he would come with us. He has always loved to ride in the car.

Now, I know that all of the above is not that unusual. But Koko loves to go boating, canoing, and tubing on the river! As long as his feet don't get wet he is a happy camper and enjoys tagging along. People notice him and their reactions to seeing a cat in the bow of a canoe or on an inner tube always adds to my amusement of being on the river with a cat.

Koko is now going on 15 years old and the only signs of aging seem to be that (1) he can't leap quite as high, (2) he has taken to napping during the day, and (3) instead of trying to be human he has taken to trying to turn me into a cat so that I will nap with him.


Monday, January 17, 2005

Pet Names Can Affect You For Life

I have been reminiscing about how I came to have a zillion mice and other rodents on my Christmas tree. As long as I can remember I have loved mice, hamsters, squirrels, and other rodent-like creatures... except rats. That is probably why I often use the word "rats" when I have done something stupid or lost at a game of cards. Rats are just creepy.

I think it all started because my father used to call me "Minicker Mouse" or for short just "Mouse" when I was little. Somehow that came to be related to "not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse" and I now have mice on my tree and around my home.

I know someone who was called "pumkin" and "peanut" when she was a girl and now she is a vegetarian. Someone else was called "Inspector Gadget" and he is now a computer engineer. "Absent-minded professor is now a mechanical engineer with a Masters degree in mechanical engineering and has an MBA and is still very absent-minded. "Princess" still thinks she is and combines that with her alter ego "Nature Girl". Nature Girl still is that.

I have a friend with a son she started calling "Doodlebug" shortly after he was born. I am glad that that name did not stick. Just think what could have happened!

So I guess that is why psychologists tell you not to call your children by demeaning names or call them "bad" because they may become what you call them. I always thought pet names were cute. Now I still think they are cute, but I am very discerning about what names I choose. You never know how a name will have an impact. Parents should be very careful.


Sunday, January 16, 2005

My First Anonymouse Entry

Ok. I'm new to the world of the blog, but I am having a great time exploring it! I have discovered some interesting things in this new world:

1) there are a lot of strange people out there that think they are interesting...some of them actually are

2) at least 1 of every 3 bloggers has a cat or a dog or a child pictured on their pages...many of the others have pictures, in some form, of themselves

3) blogs are far more global than I expected...wish I could read them all

4) there are a lot of blogs that I don't ever want to see again...why do people think I want to see naked pictures of anyone!

So far the first blog that I discovered is my favorite...of course the blogger is related to me, responsible for introducing me to blogging...and since I know her very well...I appreciate her humor far more than a stranger (when I figure out how to do it, I will provide a link)

I am looking forward to this new mirror of the world. I am also looking forward to stepping through the glass, like Alice, and becoming a part of it all.