Friday, April 30, 2010


These kid weekends are fun to plan, now that they only happen every other weekend. I started in the middle of the week. What to do? The new bug exhibit at the Museum of Discovery, or Aladdin at the Children's Theatre? My friend Carrie voted for Aladdin (that one was her idea), and got us tickets today.

She was also stoked about my Sunday morning plans to go to Toad Suck Daze in Conway, and decided to tag along. I've got fond college memories of Toad Suck Daze. Looking forward to going with kids. I imagine it will be a totally different experience. Hope the weather passes.

We had a respite last year, as far as tornadoes go. Tonight the sirens are screaming intermittently. Competing nicely with the thousands of frogs in my pond in the backyard. I finally got the kids settled down at ten after watching Sleeping Beauty with frequent storm path checks. Didn't want to spend a needless evening in the basement like we did a few weeks ago - although it was rather fun playing with the voices app on my iphone. Chipmunk! Exorcism! Dark Side! Cyborg! Fun House! Turtle! The kids shied away from the scary ones - after all, we were in the basement shielding from an impending weather disaster.

Tonight, even after the sirens died, they were scared of the thunder. I tried to explain - probably poorly - "It's when the hot air and the cold air collide - well, they don't like each other, and they start doing this crazy dance, and it makes a lot of noise." I reached for an explanation that would make them laugh off their fears. "When they are doing the crazy dance, their butts bump into each other. That's the noise of the thunder. The butt bump." They laughed uncontrollably, and I finally got them settled.

Fear. I coasted into Friday - got a lot of my cases done early - enough time to spend researching summer camps for Sicily and buy a birthday present in the gift shop for a Sunday afternoon party. I was aiming to get out by around 4:00 to pick up the kids and head out to pizza with mom and dad. I called the gross room to triage a fallopian tube more case - told my friend that rather than pass it on to someone Monday I would just have them hold it until I get back to work on Wed. Surely no one would miss a fallopian tube for a couple of days - I will be busy getting the house ready for market Tue.

My friend said, "Aren't you covering P.M. Frozens? We have a frozen. Come on over."

"What? I am covering frozens? I had no idea."

Normally, since I rarely cover main OR frozens (although I handled a bundle of them quite nicely covering for a partner who had to go to a funeral Wed. morning), I get a little anxious about doing it. Not because I can't, but because I am not used to it. I laughed thinking that the idea, a few months ago, of covering main OR frozens in the afternoon would keep me up late the night before and keep me away from the coffee machine all day. I would have frantically gotten the OR schedule and looked up every possible patient in the computer - learning as much as I could in preparation. Now my fears are off my radar.

"What is the frozen?"

"It's an ovary."

Ewww. I hate ovaries. They are hard. The tough thing about going to cover frozens when you aren't used to the personalities of the surgeons, is just knowing what they want. How far you have to go. How you can cover your ass and satisfy them at the same time.

"I'll be right there."

I got to the gross table, and the tech cutting it had sliced the at least 20 cm ovary (normal is 3-4 cm) in 1 cm bread loafs. She said, "It looks bad. Where do you want to take the sections for freezing?"

We hunted for areas of viable tumor - there was a lot of cheesy necrosis and hemorrhage. I pointed to two areas and said, "Why don't you freeze both of these. I'm going to go to the doctor's lounge and get a coffee. Be right back."

When I got back, she wasn't ready - having trouble freezing. I sat by the scope and called my mom. Then I called my favorite estrogen lifeboat - she covers frozens all the time.

"What does he want (the surgeon)? How far do I have to go? If I am not sure if it is borderline or malignant, do I have to make the call?"

She assured me that I needed only to hedge - it's good not to try to be a cowboy on ovary frozens, especially with surface epithelial tumors.

I got the first frozen - the ovary. Looked under the scope. Weird. I didn't know what it was. Decided it was probably malignant. Can I say that? Favor malignant? So wishy-washy. While I was looking at it, the tech brought another slide - one from the fallopian tube. I hoped it would give me a clue as to what I was looking at in the ovary. Instead, it sent my brain into a tailspin. Looked nothing like the ovary. But also maybe malignant. God, the surgeon was going to think I was an idiot. I called the OR on the intercom.

"The ovary is very poorly differentiated. I think it is malignant, but I have no idea what it is. The fallopian tube is probably malignant too, but it looks different."

The surgeon asked, "Is the ovary a primary or a metastasis?"

Huh. I hadn't thought about that, and admitted as much. "Honestly, I can't tell you on frozen, where this thing came from."

"Can you send them for genetic testing?"

"Of course."

I laughed with the tech when I got off the phone. "I gave him no real information, and he was satisfied! I think I could handle this!"

In the meantime, the call pathologist came in and I made him look at the slides, for his opinion. "I'm going to my office to release my cases. Please let me know what you think." This guy is AP only, and all this ovary frozen stuff is old hat to him, so I was hoping for some enlightenment.

A few minutes later, he popped his head in my office. "That is a really strange case. Looks like two different processes. That tumor in the ovary - it may not even be primary. Could be a met."

It feels so good to have your thoughts validated. Sweet satisfaction. I'm on the right track, even when I am on a the track of a road less taken.

Now that I'm feeling so happy and confident, it's time to royally screw something up.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010


I"m still addicted. If you listen to this one - hang around for the amazing change-up at the end. It's hypnotizing.

Where Romance and Medicine Collide

As always, Ramona shares the coolest stuff.

Check this out by Movin Meat. It is unbelievable.

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Split Lip Rayfield

I am officially in lust over a new band - the one that opened for Les tonight. It was a bluegrass band I had never heard of - name is above. The bassist played a gas tank, and it sounded amazing - I could feel it inside every bone in my body. The guy that played the banjo had an incredible voice - I gave one song where he headlined his voice a standing ovation.

Les was great too - of course - he puts on such a good show. I haven't had much YouTube capabilities in my house at night over the past couple of months, so I was excited when my new e-mail buddy, MomTFH from MiM, told me that he is as entertaining live as he is talented. She saw Primus three or four times, back in her day, and knows what she is talking about.

My friend Laurie and I shared entertaining bathroom stories over the music. I was so excited I had to keep checking my watch to limit myself to one beer/hour - I tend to get carried away when I don't have any time commitments and I am having fun. But even at one/hour I had to make a trip/hour.

Here's Laurie's:

"There was someone in the stall next to me. She had a buddy, and she was obviously not feeling well, and her friend was a little messed up too, and was trying to talk to her to make her feel better." - - -

The friend, "Yeah, I know how you feel. I know what it is like to take ecstasy. You get overheated, sometimes. You'll be all right, I promise."

Laurie and I laughed. We've never done ecstasy.

Here's mine:

"There were two different cell phone conversations going on at once. One was:"

"You are locked out of the house? The kids are inside! You have to figure out how to get back inside, for the kids. I'm a little tied up right now (Les was about to come on), so you'll need to do it yourself. Crawl in through a window, or something."

The other was:

"What? She hasn't had a bottle yet? You have to give her a bottle. She needs a bottle, right now. Make her drink it, it has been a couple of hours. You have to learn how to give her a bottle without me, one of these days."

After the show, we went to the vending booths to spend money. While I was looking at all the Split Lip Rayfield CD's, trying to decide which one to get (such cool cover art!), and looking at the shirts, I noticed that Laurie was talking to the bassist! The one that played the gas tank! How do I find such cool friends? I quickly stepped in to compliment him, and learned what she had already gathered in their short conversation - he was pretty fucked up, and not easy to talk to.

I went back to the shirts. I told the pretty peddler, "I really like the gray thermal."

"You will love it, but it only comes in men's sizes. The smallest is a medium. It might be too big for you."

"That's OK, I like big shirts. I'll use it for sleeping."

"It's really soft. It will make a great night shirt."

I put it on right when I got home, and put the CD in. Can't wait to research and follow a new band.

Thursday, April 22, 2010


Untethered I drift
Slow, peaceful, listless, inert
Further from the shore.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

I Need A Plan

I'm a Leo (haven't I said that already?).

Here's the upside:

Generous and warmhearted
Creative and enthusiastic
Broad-minded and expansive
Faithful and loving

Here's the downside:

Needy control freak

I think if I had a DSM IV diagnosis (last I checked we were on IV, maybe we are on V or VI now, I wouldn't know), it would be hypomania. Yes, sometimes I sink into a bit of melancholy (read: depression, paranoia, insecurity), but even at my low points I am massively over-productive.

How I compensate:

I make lists. Here is an example of one I have going right now, in my office on my personalized M.D. pathologist tablet (it's rather fancy).

- Get gift for Mike's cousin Maggie's new baby Charlotte (ordered that today from my fave baby site - RetroBaby).
- Get overdue lawyer retainer from joint savings account - the one I lost the password to.
- Call realtor to sell house.
- Start taxes that were extended.
- Plan summer camps for Sicily.
- Send encouragement note to Mike's Uncle Bill, a long time blog follower who I have never personally met - he is fighting cancer (Go Bill!!!).
- Call lawn care to take care of weeds on side yard near street.
- Send text to Mike to initiate deck refurbishing/gutter cleaning.
- Plan dinner with sis-in-law Annie - haven't seen her in weeks.
- Clean out kid's rooms this weekend when they are on a camping/canoeing trip with their dad.
- Schedule massage for this weekend.
- Fill over-empty (anxiety-inducing) food drawer at work.
- Celebrate National Laboratory Week (started today with an amazing brunch - can't wait for the massive luncheon on Thursday).
- Listen to Les Claypool projects over and over in preparation for concert on Sat.
- Finish filling out medicare forms on old cases - filing or writing off charges based on my assessment of what I ordered and it's necessity on the case (health care reform starting to hit home).
- Get gift for one of C's best friend's b-day parties this week to give to Mike for drop-off/pick-up.
- Finish long overdue, much tapered-down office project with decorator to ready the house for sale.
- Get check to piano teacher.
- Sign reading forms/permission slips.
- Make lunches.
- Oh yeah, day job.

Are you bored, yet? There is much more, but I think those highlights reflect my reality.

Maybe the unknown is good for me, in some sick sense. Right now, it feels like emotional torture.

Monday, April 19, 2010


I walked into the procedure room, and introduced myself to a dark-skinned man whose youthful countenance and casual running gear belied the mid-seventies age written on the requisition form by at least 15 years.

"Did the tech tell you about the procedure?"


"Do you have any questions?"


I grabbed the syringe off of the counter and opened the plastic package on the sterile needle. Applied the needle to the syringe, and got frustrated.

"I hate the slip-tip. Can you get me the other syringe? (They know this)."

The tech apologized and started rooting around in the drawer. I don't recall the fancy name for the syringes I like, but I recalled aloud the reason for my preference.

"Once, during my training, I was squirting the specimen into the formalin bottle, and the needle fell off of the slip-tip syringe. Not only did specimen splash up into my eye, the formalin bottle tipped over and the specimen was lost. I really hate these syringes."

All of a sudden, I remembered there was a patient in the room, and rushed to console him. "That has only happened once, and I've hundreds of needles under my belt, since then. Don't worry."

The tech finally found the screw-top syringe, and I fastened the needle. Palpated the mass on the right side of the patient's face - a small centimeter lesion that was slow-growing, according to the clinical history, and cystic, according to the radiology.

Before I made a first pass at the lesion, I loosened the patient up with small talk.

"What did, or do, you do for a living?"

"Teach. Got a 45 year career in my former life. English. I also coached basketball."

"What ages?"

"Ninth to eleventh grades."

I looked at him in awe, as I applied the alcohol pad to his face to sterilize the skin. "I am honored to perform a needle on you. Those are rough ages to teach. Lots of hormones swimming around for distraction."

He laughed, and I worked the small mass in front of his ear with two fingers to isolate it. Steadied my gun, and gave a warning call. "Bee sting now."

I could tell it hurt by the expression on his face. I was a little relieved, since malignant lesions are usually painless. I liked this guy, and didn't want to give him a cancer diagnosis. Negative pressure yielded a few drops of serosanguinous fluid in the hub of the syringe - confirmation that I was in the dead center of the cyst.

After the tech stained the slides, I looked through the scope. Often when we get cyst fluid, it is impossible to make a diagnosis, because there are only inflammatory cells - nothing to lead toward a defining etiology for the lesion.

"I am going to make one more pass, and then call it quits. We'll have all of the material available for diagnosis tomorrow, and I'll call your clinician (I trained with him - he is an excellent ENT, and I told this to the patient) to give him a preliminary diagnosis."

I prepared the second needle, and applied more alcohol. Decided to tell a story while I was doing the fine needle aspirate - he was obviously uncomfortable the first time and sometimes stories can be a welcome distraction.

"I was recruited hard by my high school basketball coach, because of my height. I was pretty shy in high school, so I resisted him for a long time. I realize in retrospect he probably looked at me and had big dreams of making a star."

Needle in. I was guiding it back and forth in the lesion in quick stabbing motions, trying to catch cystic lining cells that might hint at the nature of the mass.

"I finally caved, and joined the team for off-season training as a junior. I was great at the weights, and when I was the only person on the court I could get the ball in the basket from almost anywhere on the court, even impossibly far away. But as soon as a scrimmage started, I completely fell apart. If there was anyone else on the court, I couldn't concentrate. It didn't take the coach long to concede his dreams for me, and I never made it to a real season. Went back to individual sports, like swimming, where I excelled."

As I pulled the needle out of his skin I noticed his eyes were all crinkled up and there were tears forming at the corners. I worried that I had hurt him, but he started laughing uncontrollably.

"That is the funniest basketball story I have heard in a long time."

I smiled, pleased I was able to entertain him. I don't think I ever had a patient laughing while I was plunging a needle back and forth under their skin. I waited for the tech to stain the slides, and looked in the scope for a second time. Same thing.

I told him that we still had some material to process overnight, but so far the results were encouraging. His doctor may want to excise the lesion for a definitive diagnosis, but they could decide that together. I didn't have diagnostic material, but I wasn't seeing anything scary yet, either.

"Sometimes no news is good news. I hope that is the case for you."

He stepped out of the chair and I shook his hand.

"It was an honor to meet you sir. Good luck."

Saturday, April 17, 2010

My Astrological Twin

Is my stylist. Her name is Deirdre, we're both Leos, and I've been going to her since I was pregnant with Sicily. She's younger than me by a few years, but our lives have taken some really strange parallels. She got out of an 11 year marriage about a year ago, and long before then she gave me the courage to face a lot of issues in my own life.

We met out by chance once, a little over a year ago, but despite many promises we have never gotten together outside of our sylist-client relationship. So I was excited to invite her over tonight while Sicily and John were at their aunt Annie's house for a birthday celebration for their dad.

Deirdre started talking to me about astrology a year before I finally bought the bible - Sextrology. It splits up genders and astrological signs and discusses mind, body, and spirit characteristics. I read myself about a year ago (Yikes! So true!) and pulled it off the shelf last week to show my friend Laurie after we had dinner at Ferneau and watched my brother's best friend and former band mate, Chris Henry, play his loop player until midnight. Laurie was floored. I am a fire sign, and she is a water sign - both are strongly attached to their fathers. It was neat to read myself again, a year later and much stronger, from a new life viewpoint on Sunday morning.

I haven't hosted many guests here lately, so I excitedly went to Boulevard and bought a St. Andre's and a Stilton, along with some buttery rosemary Carr crackers. Also got some Danish wedding cookies, and an Americano to keep me going. It was nice to have a little break from my weekend with the kids - although hard to complain about seeing one of the best kid movies I have ever seen - How To Train A Dragon. I highly recommend.

Deirdre brought her boyfriend of a year - Jerry. He's a bass guitarist with a proclivity for computers. I think I convinced them to go to see Les Claypool on the 24th. To read his book. I hope to see them there.

Turns out, Jerry knows my brother. When I talked about him as Matt, Jerry was perplexed. All of a sudden he said, "Chief?"

My brother's nickname is Chief, the same nickname my Grandpa Jack, who died when I was a toddler, was awarded by his buddies in the war. It was serendipitous.

A former band member of my brother's, who is in Australia now, called Jerry while he was at my house. "Guess where I am? Chief's older sister's house. Can you believe it?" I learned that my brother's former band, Cooper's Orbit, beat out the one that Jerry was in at the time, at the Arkansas Time's Battle of the Bands. By ONE POINT. Jerry held no grudges.

I caught Jerry up on my brother - a year of law school under his belt in Atlanta and a gorgeous Ellen Page look-alike girlfriend who is a former valedictorian and a current anesthetist with my sister. It sure is a small world.

I hope to see them at Les' show. Deirdre and I made plans to go to Buzz-B-Que with our kids, to watch Jeff Coleman and The Feeders. Hopefully it won't get rained out this year.

I wonder who else we all have in common. Might be fun to find out.

Status Post Book Report

Last Saturday, three different stores yielded:

-Hello Kitty outfit
-Hello Kitty necklace and ring
-Hello Kitty stuffed puppy dog with hair tie dog collar
-Hello Kitty glittery shoes (Target!)

Yes, this is where I funnel my energy when my kids are on a weekend with their dad. Don't make fun.

This is what she said to me after she tried on the outfit last Sunday, "Mom, where is my face mask? I really want a face mask.

Got off around 4 on Tue., 48 hours before the book report, and decided to hunt for the face mask until transparenting time. Went to Party City. "I'm sorry! We just got the Barbie and Disney face masks in. The Hello Kitty should be here, but not until later this week. Can you come back?"

I ended up buying a face painting kit. I rather liked what I had done to her face with my eyeliner on Sunday, but I knew her standards were higher.

We spent an hour or so Sunday afternoon going over her book report, revising it, finishing make-up work from the Blanchard Springs day, but we didn't have time to practice her presentation. "Don't worry mom, we'll do it later this week." Wednesday night at bedtime, I worried that we hadn't practiced. "I practiced it for my friends Jacob and Thomas tonight while you and Christy were making sno cones. It went fine, mom. I don't have to do it again." As always (well, not always, but certainly more than I would have imagined at her age), I took her lead.

Thursday morning I woke up extra early so we would have time to face paint. I knew John would want some, too. I hadn't practiced, so I got stressed when Sicily announced over frozen waffles, "Mom, I want my entire face in white, just like Hello Kitty." I looked at the clock. We had about 15 minutes budgeted in, no time for a revision. I worried out loud, "If you don't like it, there will be no time for changing, OK?" I thought about past experiences with her when I screwed up royally and remembered the verbal repercussions. Fear reared its ugly head. I really just wanted to do the yellow button nose and whiskers, and I tried to talk her into this, unsuccessfully.

Here is how it came out. I'm no face painting expert, but not too shabby for a first draft. I did exactly what she said to do, and she was happy. John had fun, too. She told me excitedly Thursday night that it went well. I could care less about her grade. Feeling good about a presentation in front of the class with little to no practice with me? She's already light years beyond where I was at her age.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010


So I am now, officially, a transparent. I even have a certificate.

I am transparent. Diaphanous. Ghostly. Mysterious.

It's really funny to show up for your transparenting class, and realize that one of the teachers is someone you know very well. I went to college with him - was best friends with his two-year girlfriend, the one that pre-dated his current wife. They have two beautiful kids.

I was kind of excited, because I talked to him at a Christmas party and a February wedding shower. He is hilarious - his dry wit adequately fills the void in social and professional venues. He was a little embarrassed to see me in the crowd. "I know someone. I might get nervous." Whatever.

He was distinctly nervous at the break when I was talking to his therapist partner. They made a great combo - performing role plays and doling out advice to divorcing singles in an equally engaging and entertaining forum. Lots of good tips. I highly recommend. He worried I would oust his college day antics.

I consoled him. "College? Too much alcohol? Is there a limit for that, in college?"

He laughed, and it made me remember a moment. I was changing a light bulb in a dorm, perched high upon a stool. Don't recall whose room it was, or why I was doing the maintenance. It was just me and him.

He asked, "Why are you always humming? It's like you have a constant song going around in your head. You are always humming."

I didn't even notice I was humming.

Tips for transparenting class:

1. Bring food. They only have pretzels, bad coffee, water, and stale cookies. It is scheduled from 5:30-9:30 - so you need to be nutritionally prepared.

2. Bring a coat. The temperature alternates every 20 minutes - you are either freezing or breaking out in a sweat.

3. Volunteer for the second-to-last act in the play - male role-playing with the female therapist. It cuts the entire evening by 1.5 hours, if they get volunteers.

4. Participate, but don't overdo it. They don't want "your story." They just want intelligent questions. And they have been doing this for years, so they have great answers.

I drove back to my house across the Broadway Bridge (beautiful) at night. Couldn't believe that I had a transparenting certificate in my passenger seat. Life is definitely mysterious. Diaphanous. Transparent. Ghostly.

Monday, April 12, 2010

I Love Presents

Sometimes someone walks into my office, an interaction takes place, and it's like a gift to blog about. I don't even need to make stuff up - the truth is stranger than fiction.

Today I was looking at cases and one of the cytotechs was standing at the door. He dropped of some cases for me that he had screened, and we ended up in a conversation about religion, God, atheism, and one of our mutual friends who was struggling with cancer. All of a sudden he said, "Oh, I'd better go now. Someone needs to talk to you."

One of the techs in the lab in charge of send out tests walked into my office and showed me a cytogenetics report. She didn't have the bone marrow report, so it took me a second to place the marrow in my head - I had signed it out a couple of weeks ago when I was on call. An elderly male with acute myelogenous leukemia. It was a follow-up marrow to assess for residual disease, and because he had some funky cytogenetics in the past, I had ordered them to see if the same mutant clones were still wandering about his marrow. Indeed they were, but there was a twist she pointed out to me.

"Look at his chromosomes. They are female."

I immediately went to a place of "Oh shit, what did I do." I remembered a call I got from one of the geneticists at the national company a few months ago, wondering why a male had female chromosomes and a decidedly masculine name. Turns out I had checked the wrong gender box, so that one was resolved relatively easily. But this one was different.

Sometimes, when patients receive stem cell transplants from a different gender, their chromosomes reflect that. And he certainly had a lot of the same mutant clones that were on previous marrows, so it made sense that this was indeed his marrow. I resolved to her that I would check that out with the clinician (need to do that tomorrow) to make sure. I said, "They obviously weren't to concerned about it, or they would have called me personally. But I am glad you were watching, so we can close the circle."

She said, "One time we got male chromosomes on a female patient being treated for cancer. It didn't make sense. It wasn't the type of cancer that would get a stem cell transplant. Turns out, with a lot of investigation, it was really a male transsexual. He didn't even tell the oncologists his true gender, until we delved into the problem."

Wow. You can fool a lot of people with your appearance. Even yourself, maybe. But you can't change your cytogenetics (unless you get a stem cell transplant, of course - but you need a reason for that expensive endeavor). Molecular testing trumps perceived reality.

Friday, April 9, 2010


That's what I am, this weekend. They are with their dad. I worried, in the separation, about missing them on weekends like this, but I find that it is a nice respite for me. Today after a couple of Dr. appts., I headed to El Rancho mom and dad-o and tried out my new bikini - the one I bought a couple of months ago when they first hit the stores. Yes, it's bikini weather in AR. Not pool weather - it got down to 40 last night and heating up that shit would cost way too much $$$. So I just liberally applied SPF 30 (promise Ruby!) and soaked up the sun.

Headed to Layla's around 5 or so to pick up my new favorite salad - gyros. Spicy lamb meat, lettuce, and cucumber in a lemon vinaigrette with pita bread and yogurt cucumber sauce. Great bang for the buck. That reminds me of some other salads I love around town. I had the Mickey-D's one for lunch - they do a much better salad than BK or Wendy's. Spicy grilled chicken on lettuce with marinated beans and corn. Did I mention the rectangular Doritos that top it off? John wasn't around on the park bench I sat on at lunch (in the sun) to steal them.

Yesterday, after a pedi and shopping time at Box Turtle, I introduced my sis to an old fave - Lenny's philly chicken cheese (loaded of course - with all that juicy spice who needs dressing? Not to mention the nutty contrast of the sunflower seeds added to the mix).

I also love the blackened chicken creole at The Faded Rose - who says too much nitrates are bad for you? Ask for the Creole mustard dressing on the side - they get a little too drench-happy on their own.

An oldie but goodie - Scallions chicken, blue cheese, cranberry, chopped squash salad. I forget the name. It comes with a champagne vinaigrette but I prefer the fat-free herb - not because it is fat-free but because it is leafy green with the perfect amount of vinegar and oil. Dump the whole thing on top for a great mix.

So. Plans for a kid-less weekend. I haven't perfected them, yet. Definitely will hit the stores with mom to get that puppy costume for Sicily and fill out their summer wardrobes - I cleaned out their closets this week and am happy to say J and C will no longer be hitting their clothes stashes up for size 2 and 3 (they are 7 and 4, remember?). Got a 90 minute massage planned in the afternoon.

I also think I want to go to a movie - checked out my friend Laurie's weekend plans while I was at work today and I think she is game. I am dying to try out that Leonardo DiCaprio (Shutter Island?) that my colleague Dr. Woods raved about and said would be right up my alley. He has a regular weekly movie night with the guys so he is a great resource. I love that I named him Dr. Woods after Tiger - long before the proverbial shit hit the fan. I also think it is hilarious that the obscure multi-million dollar conglomerate had to do damage control and remove all of their billboards when ole Tiger got his hands caught in the cookie jar. "Do it the Tiger way." Hee hee.

Happy, hopefully kid-less weekend to you.

Thursday, April 8, 2010

The Story - Brandi Carlile

All of these lines across my face
Tell you the story of who I am
So many stories of where I've been
And how I got to where I am
But these stories don't mean anything
When you've got no one to tell them to
It's true...I was made for you
I climbed across the mountain tops
Swam all across the ocean blue
I crossed all the lines and I broke all the rules
But baby I broke them all for you
Because even when I was flat broke
You made me feel like a million bucks
You do
I was made for you
You see the smile that's on my mouth
It's hiding the words that don't come out
And all of my friends who think that I'm blessed
They don't know my head is a mess
No, they don't know who I really am
And they don't know what
I've been through like you do
And I was made for you...
All of these lines across my face
Tell you the story of who I am
So many stories of where I've been
And how I got to where I am
But these stories don't mean anything
When you've got no one to tell them to
It's true...I was made for you

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Sunday Kind of Love

Good combo: Etta James and Smoked Gouda. Wish I could link to the youtube video, but still having problems here, despite finally figuring out how to hook up my new router, with the aid of my good friend Katie. Must be an internal laptop problem. Back to MacSolutions when I get the chance, I guess.

The Book Report

Read it, if you want, over at MiM. Click on the link in the blogroll at the right.

Monday, April 5, 2010

My Dearest Darling - Etta James

All I need
Is someone like you
My dearest darling
Please~love me to
Within my heart
I pray your answer's yes
I'll make your life
Full of happiness

I'll be there by your side
Oh,I pledge my love to you
With God as our guide..

Unh~my dearest darling
I offer you my heart

Oh, yeah whenever you need me
I'll..I'll be there by your side
Oh~I pledge my love to you
With God as our guide

Oh nothing,nothing,nothing in this world
Can keep us apart
Unh~ my dearest darling
I'm offering you my heart

Unh~my dearest darling...


I'm off this week - I know, a recurring theme, lately - but if you knew how much I sacrificed to get here, you wouldn't begrudge it of me. Off, so far, means grocery shopping, carpooling, meeting with the lawyer, and signing up for a transparenting (that's what they call it here in AR, I think the term is a little comical) class down on West Broadway. I also had to call for a new debit card - lost it AGAIN. Pull some cash out since it won't be here until next week. Learn how to get online with my bank account and pay for my credit card that way - all this money managing is much easier to do online than keep up with (or lose) bills.

I'm still eating like a champ - better take advantage of the fact that I can - a small consolation during the divorce process. I ate five pieces of Chlorplast Blast pizza last Thursday night and still lost a pound when I got on the scale Friday morning. It's like I've got a tapeworm or something. I enjoyed spending Thursday night with my friend Mary and her two kids - also met a guy she just started dating and his two girls. Mary and I stayed up late talking on her front porch after her kids went to bed and I learned a lot about divorce - she's been divorced three years, and I decided it would take three years for me to scope out a potential new prospect. Three years is a long time for vetting (um, sorry), but given my past history on the few relationships I've had, I would need three years before I could trust myself to make a decision. Once I made it, if I ever do, it would be tough to go back. I don't make decisions lightly.

I learned today that a divorce of my caliber - given our financial situation and children - could take 3-6 months. That seems like a long time, but oh well. Process is in place for a reason, and it is good to take things slow for all parties involved, especially the kids. It's going to take some time for me to get the things I want. A smaller house, one that I get to pick out. I'm young, in the grand scheme of things. Life is still out there.

This afternoon, I sat out on the deck at this house, and started reading the divorce books again. I finished the Les Claypool on Easter Sunday, and even though I had a couple of plot points to argue, overall it worked and I liked it. It had one of the most insane, disgusting, hilarious sex scenes I ever read in a book, and I was laughing so hard in the backyard Sunday afternoon while the kids were jumping on the trampoline I almost fell out of my chair. I had the kids all last weekend, and will probably have them again this weekend. We had a blast - mostly in the backyard. The weather was beautiful.

My sister and her boys came from Atlanta for the week!!! I picked the kids up from school and we spent a wonderful evening at mom and dad's own Rancho Relaxo (sorry - I'm a little Les crazy right now), eating leftover Easter brunch sandwiches, drinking wine, and searching for shells on the bank of the Arkansas River. My son is finally old enough to really play with Sara's six-year-old Joshua - and their conversations were wonderfully funny and innocent to listen to. Sicily is in heaven attending to three-year-old Matthew. I problem-solved with my mom about some issues I'm having with Sicily at bedtime, and she smartly suggested I blog about it over at MiM and seek advice. I think I might just do that, this week.

On Wednesday I'm pulling the kids out of school to play hooky and we are all headed up to Blanchard Springs Caverns with mom and dad. I can't wait for Sicily, John, Matthew, and Joshua to see it - it seems like I went yearly with my mom and dad there for a while, growing up. Luckily the bat fungus, which is closing down public caverns all over the country, still hasn't touched Blanchard Springs (probably by the end of the summer they will have to shut down, if not earlier). I love caverns. I remember when I was in gross anatomy and dissected my first human heart. Opened it up, and pondered the four chambers and the chordae tendinae. Papillary muscles. Huh. Looked like Blanchard Springs. I love how anatomy parallels nature - the visuals seem to flow and morph and mimic each other over and over again.

Sunday, April 4, 2010

60 Feet Tall - The Dead Weather

you're so cruel and shameless
but I can't leave you be
you're so cold and dangerous
I can't leave you be
you got the kind of loving
I need constantly

hooked up to my motor
all day long
we go down to texas
up to montreal

two eyes none the wiser
in the deep
when the water gets hotter
both hands in the deep

you got my attention
you got it all

I can take the trouble
I'm 60 feet tall

I know it ain't easy
I must tap your evil well
cos boy, do you come roaring
like a bat out of hell
you drive me so reckless
you'll kill us all

I can take the trouble
I'll take you on

I can take the trouble
I'm 60 feet tall

you're so cruel and shameless
but I can't leave you be
you're so cold and dangerous
I can't leave you be
you got the kind of loving
I need constantly

I can take the trouble
cos I'm 60 feet