I finally got a new keyboard for my laptop!!! Ross’s dad gave it to me for Christmas, so now I don’t have to wait for Ross to “just check his email” before I can get on the Internet. Not only that, it’s set up in my newly purple sunroom/craftroom. That’s right, instead of relaxing during my winter break, I decided that the crappy room behind our bedroom needed some sprucing up, basically so I wouldn’t want to die whenever I walked into it. So now it’s a a lovely, vibrant, eggplant color, complete with flowy curtains and my artwork on the walls. Zapp and I love hanging out in here. I’m tempted to tape a sign like this on the door:
So I went over to the Home Depot today to pick up some more purple paint for the sunroom (yeah, that’s right) AND to purchase some sort of mouse trapping apparatus. Even though I will smush most living things to bits, I can’t bring myself to kill a mouse. Consequently, the old-fashioned “snap them in half” variety wasn’t going to work for me. As I perused the vermit/pest aisle, all I could find was said mouse-snappers, and pellets that are guaranteed to kill mice and rats when consumed. I figured if they could kill mice and rats, they could probably kill dogs, too. Being that I have two of the dumbest (but sweetest!) dogs in the world, and that these dogs manage to get into everything imaginable, I was convinced that I would have to surrender to the fact that the mice might just be there to stay. That is, until something caught my eye.
Tucked off to the side of the last shelf in the aisle was what looked to be an plug-in air freshener of some kind. Upon closer inspection, it turned out to be a little plug-in doo-hickey that emits sounds at a frequency that drives mice SO crazy that their nervous systems get all out of whack and they leave your house in efforts to avoid insanity. Now, that’s not what the package said, but my summary was much more colorful, and not inaccurate. It claims to have no effect on dogs, but I am a little worried about Gary, the class gerbil, who is visiting for the holidays. Hopefully he won’t try to escape-or die. But if he does, I can use the story as a good science review of sound frequency.
This evening I walked into the kitchen to prepare myself a much anticipated peanut butter sandwich, and I saw a teeny tiny brown mouse scurrying along the edge of our counter and disappearing behind our fridge. I have never come upon an unexpected live mouse. I’ve come across dead ones at school all the time. They like to hide in the book closet and make superman leaps off of the shelves. They rarely survive this stunt, and I frequently find them lying spread eagle in the middle of the floor. My reaction to this is usually “ew” and then I go get Pyramus, the custodian, and he sweeps them up into the dustbin and does whatever it is you do with dead mice. Anyway, I’ve always wondered what my reaction would be to a not-dead mouse. Well, it turns out that I simply make a series of unintelligible squeals and whines until I have gotten the icky feeling out of my system. After my semi-fit, I bravely got the flashlight and looked behind the fridge-but to no avail. It seems the critter escaped through one of the many holes tucked away in the corners of our Swiss-cheeseque house. Needless to say, we will be picking up some mouse traps tomorrow. I’m sure there will be many pictures to follow showing the spoils of that adventure.
I went out with the hubs (don’t click there-he never updates his blog) tonight to participate in a mini “going away” party for Jake, who leaves for a 5 week stint Nicaragua tomorrow afternoon. We met up with a bunch of people at Empire, a bar in the VCU area. The people I met up with are ones that I see fairly frequently, or at least I feel like I see them because I know what’s going on in their lives, mainly through stalking them via the Internet. But the thing is, I guess I don’t hang out enough, because when people saw me, they were all, “Valerie! You’re here! That’s awesome!” Ross always tells me that when he goes to hang out sans me, people are always demanding to know where I am and for me to hang out more. I never really believed him, but I guess it’s true. But here’s the thing-I feel like when I go to hang out, I can’t stay the whole time because my very thin facade of coolness will crumble after a few precious hours. Therefore, if I leave early, they never know that I’m a loser, and I leave them wanting more. Such a conclusion indicates a mastery of social perceptions and the possible manipulations of such perceptions, or severe insecurities. Or is it both? Have I just blown your mind?!?!?!?!?!?!?111
After a fab lunch at Perly’s this afternoon, the hubs and I decided to brave the wilds of Target to buy A)a keyboard for my laptop that ScottPharr destroyed a year ago by pouring water on it and B) a rug for our upstairs hallway to protect the 90 year old hardwood floors that our dogs’ talons are systematically tearing apart. Purchases made, I steered our car out of the jammed parking lot and patiently waited my turn to exit. Being the solid Richmonder that I am, I gave the required go ahead while in a traffic situation, allowing one person to slip in front of me. I let her through, got my “thank you” wave, and gave her the “no problem” wave in return. And that’s when the Christmas miracle began.
As I began to scoot forward to claim my place behind the lady I allowed to pass, some jerk-face in an SUV cut in front of me and slipped into my spot in line. Being a Southern lady, I can not allow such rudeness to take place without giving the culprit “the what for.” The only appropriate “what for” to give was to honk my horn at him. He then turned to me with his jerk-face and said “Yeeeeessssss???????” followed by a series of jerk-faced “I’m a jerk-face” faces. As he was making said faces, jerk-face failed to notice that he had not completely pushed on his brake, and proceeded to run into the car in front of him. Hearing the two cars connect filled my heart with such joy-a joy that one might call “The Joy of Christmas”-that I could not help but to toss my head back with a gleeful laugh as I drove by jerk-face who had been sufficiently pwn’d by the Christmas Spirit.
Merry Christmas, dear readers. And may you be blessed with a Christmas Miracle of your own this holiday season.
Then show him one of these!!!!!!!11111:
We have had an infestation of sorts of these little buggars as of late. I guess they don’t like the cold weather either. We’ve found one on the couch, one on the ceiling, several in the hallway, and one staring at me from the bathroom wall while I was, ahem, otherwise occupied. And not only are they insanely ugly and hard to catch, but they make a huge pile of guts and legs when you smash them. Sometimes I wonder if it’s worth even killing them. Oh well, sometimes the dogs help with the clean up process. Gross, I know, but it really gets old after a while. Now I’m sure all of you will be clammering to come over to our house. Not only is it frigid, but now it is crawling with critters with faces like this:
So Ross and I met with Steve Constable of Stony Point Church, the place we semi-attend. The gist of the meeting was that he can’t really baptise me unless I’m a member of the church. Ross and I are not really for church membership, i.e. we don’t see the point. But Constable assured me that if I don’t ever get baptised I won’t go to hell. That’s always nice to hear. So now I have to decide what I want to do, if anything. The fact that Constable wasn’t like, “Here, let me baptise you right now in Starbuck’s,” requires me to figure it out. I’m not so good at “planning” so it’ll be interesting to see what happens.
As I lay in bed last night, nursing a belly-ache, I started to think of things I could post on my blog that would allow my loyal but often silent readers to be more active in this whole blogger/audience relationship. I came up with this question that I thought would generate some interesting responses:
Out of all the books you have read, who is your favorite character and/or narrator? Here are some of my favorites, as obvious as they may be…
Scout from To Kill a Mockingbird. Her narration is authentic and hilarious. I want to have a daughter just like her one day.
Good ol’ Holden Caufield from Catcher in the Rye. I love it when he describes cute things that girls do as “killing him.” The scene when he describes how pitiful his old teacher is cracks me up, too.
Becky Bloomwood from the Shopaholic series (yeah, that’s right). Her justifications for her ridiculous actions remind me of a certain red-headed friend I have.
Esther Greenwood from the Bell Jar. Even though I’m not as crazy as her, I can definitely relate to her breakdowns.
Francie Nolan from A Tree Grows in Brooklyn. The descriptions of her alcoholic father are heartbreaking and moving.
I know, I’m such an English major. But I want to know what you think. Please let me know!
We had the last Potluck of 2k5 this evening, and I assaulted all of our guests with the same question: “Is your house warm?” I even made poor Kate describe the warmth of her house to me, as she now lives in an adorable *one* story house which is much easier to heat. Many of you unfortunately have to hear about our frigid abode anytime you see us. Well, now you get to read about it.
I love love love our house in the summer. It stays nice and cool, even through the melting days of a Richmond August. However, once winter hits, Ross and I are forced to live/dress like paupers, walking around inside with hats and scarves on muttering, “It’s so cold.” Our house was built in the 1920′s and still has all of the orginial windows. I know, I know, 1920′s windows sound charming, what with their mouldings and all. But mouldings don’t keep you warm. Just come over and put your hand in front of one of those charming windows-it’ll seem a lot less cute when you feel the northeasterly blowing into our dining room. Not only do they let all the cold in, but they also let all the heat out. So much heat that our poor furnace just keeps running, racking up a $311 gas bill. I guess it’ll be time to seal the windows up with plastic this weekend, a project that requires Ross and I to work together. Ross and I love each other more than words can say, and that love is able to stay strong because of our awareness that we don’t work well together when it comes to house projects. Hopefully our love will withstand the stress. And, I mean, it could be worse. As Ross said to me tonight as I was doing the dishes in my coat and scarf, “At least you can’t see your breath inside the house. That’s something.”
The hubs and I were invited to this political dinner/drinks/fundraiser thing for Chris Peace, a House of Delegates candidate for the 97th district. Ross and his bidness partner, ScottPharr, are building this guy’s web site, so the hubs, the Scott, his wife, and me-self got to go to Julep’s for some free food this evening. The food was good (I basically had crab dip for dinner), the wine flowed like wine, and we got to see good ol’ Mark and Jamie, friends who we could never get enough of even if they lived in our house. But here’s the thing: JERRY EFFING KILGORE WAS THERE. Yeah, that’s right. Mr. Not-Our-Governor, the man who has been the subject of much mockery in our household for the last year. Once he walked in the party (which he stayed at *just* long enough to get his picture taken and then skeedaddle), I knew I was out of my league. Rather than discuss issues with the politicos surrounding me, all I wanted to do was scream, “I DIDN’T VOTE FOR YOU!” at Mr. Kilgore, and eat some crab dip with a spoon rather than on a cracker, as is the “appropriate” or “ladylike” way. I had nothing to say to anyone and kept following Ross around, who kept following Mark, who kept following Jamie, who was only there to make business connections in case she decides to quit her job. I am so not a grown up. But I so love free crab dip.