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Monday, August 27, 2007

Odd DREAM with Dick Smothers (sort of...maybe)

Here's a weird dream for you. I might not have had any dream at all or of any significance last night, as has been the case lately, except for these series of events that caused deep sleep and odd dreams.

This is not the dream...this is what happened yesterday. Stan and I went to Pug Play. Not too many people there because it was still so wet/end of summer lethargy/who knows. Lots of weeds growing around the park, too wet to mow, I would guess. Stan picks up a weed to examine its flower structure...such a nerd. Upon plucking evil weed, I see it release a cloud of pollen. Oh, just terrific. I could've strangled him. Shortly thereafter I start experiencing extreme throat itching and then, sneezing. I'm pretty miserable, and I'm not armed with any equipment like facial tissue, after all, I was FINE in the morning. Usually if I have allergies during the day, I pretty much wake up with them at home, not acquire them because some nerdboy picks up a wafting weed in my presence. After we left and I went back home, I downed a Claritin. Claritin does help clear up my allergies quite well, unfortunately, it also leaves a host of side effects...tiredness, jitteriness, dizziness, weakness, depression, spacyness, sleepiness, insomnia. Yes, I know sleepiness and insomnia seem mutually exclusive, but it's true. Just read this consumer review on Claritin-D. I've experienced all those symptoms when taking Clairitin except for severe diarrhea, which, I honestly don't know how someone could have that happen since Claritin dries you out like an Arizona sponge. Claritin is pretty much a last resort measure. If my sneezing is so bad that I can't do anything because I'm constantly holding tissue to nose, then I'll take a Claritin, because if I won't be productive anyway, I might as well not be productive and not sneezing as well. If I'm still able to function with the allergies, I do not take Claritin. It's just not worth it except under extreme symptoms. So, I'm pretty much a vedge...physical and mental...for the rest of the day, unable to go for a bike ride (next time, Stan, don't waft the weed, ok?). I'm pretty much unable to work on much for fear that I'll make some dumb mistake due to my absent mental acuity. Because the inability to sleep from taking Claritin, I fortunately have an old and running out prescription for Lorazepam (before the health care provider switch...hope they'll renew that) which was prescribed for taking with Claritin for exactly that reason. Lorazepam is great...it allows me to sleep. Hard. It even allows me to get back to sleep if I wake up, which I seldom can under normal conditions.

So here's the dream, caused by the somnorific effects of the Lorazepam:

Somehow I was caught up with a bunch of Stan's relatives...cousins and the like, but also with people I used to work with. IRL, I really DID work with someone, back in the old Fort Collins Stinko's days, who married a 2nd cousin (or something like that...) of Stan's. Let's see, Stan and his cousin shared the same...grandparent? Except for her they were great grandparents ('cause her mother would actually be the cousin of Stan? Would that make them second cousins once removed or what? I have no idea, since I have no relatives at all, I never learned that secret code. So she marries this guy I work with and I marry Stan...That's too small town...that's too odd, too close for comfort. It's not that we were all close or anything, we weren't...we were just acquainted. But Fort Collins is like that...everyone knows everyone. That's when I knew it was time to leave. Yet I digress.

I don't really know the plot of this dream, but it was a lighthearted, fun dream. I'm with the husband of Stan's 2nd cousin (as mentioned above), and I'm with a supervisor I had at Depression's...two different co-workers, from two different times in two different states. We're in a car, and another one of Stan's cousins is driving (the cousin who we frequently visit when we go out west). It sort of looks like him, but it also looks like Dick Smothers. Yes, Dick Smothers, I kid you not. When you think about it, though, he has a younger brother who would be Tom Smothers, the dorkier one, and this cousin of Stan's would definitely be Dick, the straight man. The Smothers Brothers? WTF? So we're driving around in a car and the supervisor from Depressions and I are joking and in a jovial way I am putting her in her place for suspecting I was a bad worker or bad seed or something. I don't know if this was in fact true for this person, but it was in the dream. She also looked nothing like she did IRL. In the dream she looked like the wife of of a mob boss. This dream seemed to last a long time, and when I woke up, I was listening to the radio and they announced the name of the guest they had been talking to. Now here's the weird part. The name of the guest was the SAME NAME of the father of Stan's cousin who married the guy I worked with at Stinko's. Sure, it's a common name (like Mike Jones...not Mike Jones, but similarly common), but still. WEIRD. I also know that this could not have influenced my dream because the show hadn't been going on as long as my dream had. My dream had started much sooner than that show.

"A lot o' people don't realize what's really going on. They view life as a bunch o' unconnected incidents 'n things. They don't realize that there's this, like, lattice o' coincidence that lays on top o' everything. Give you an example; show you what I mean: suppose you're thinkin' about a plate o' shrimp. Suddenly someone'll say, like, plate, or shrimp, or plate o' shrimp out of the blue, no explanation. No point in lookin' for one, either. It's all part of a cosmic unconciousness." -Miller in Repo Man

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Tuesday, August 14, 2007

DREAM: Hurricane House, Kittensnails and Stallone Vocal Appearance

I was in a house that seemed to have been in a natural disaster like a tornado or hurricane. I didn't recognize this place as anywhere I've lived. I was talking on the phone to some woman, and then someone else comes on the line, and it's Sylvester Stallone. WTF. He says how he likes listening to her program, and then I realize I'm talking on some talk show.

Sylvester Stallone? WTF?!?!?!?!??! Yuck! Dreamwriters and directors, get someone decent in here, will you? What, you say I don't have the budget for Eastwood or DeNiro? Oh yeah, blame it on the producer.

The dream continues...I go outside and there are these large snails/small mollusks that are hopping around in pools outside. I never knew mollusks could hop (they can't). Some of them look like kittens...10 week old brownish-ginger-colored kittens. They're really cute, so I pick one up and go back in the house to show people. It's very hard to handle and seems much more feral than any kitten I've held. It's pawing and biting and trying to get away. I'm trying to keep it away from the other cats in the house. I'm talking to someone--I don't know who it is--but I'm trying to convince them that I don't want to KEEP the kittensnail, I just want to show it to them because it's so unusual that a snail looks like a kitten.

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Monday, August 13, 2007

Kentucky Fried Chicken Scam

We went to Madison's East side KFC and ordered 2 - 2 piece meals - original dark meat - with corn bread - coleslaw and macaroni & cheese.

The person taking the order read it back with Mashed potatoes and biscuit instead.

We told them the order again and drove up to wait for the food.

This took a LONG time....We should have just drove off, but we stayed.

Then we got the order and went home to eat. The first thing we noticed it that it didn't seem as hot as it usually does, but this often happens with all fast foods. We both thought the mac & cheese and chicken didn't seem as fresh as it usually does, but we ate anyway. I save the biscuit for last (which should have been corn bread) and when I tasted it I knew what was up.

This Was Day Old Food!

I didn't finish my biscuit and put it out for the birds. Then I went to the trash to look for the receipt.

There Was No Receipt.

Well...This explains everything....These guys were saving food that was suppose to be thrown out yesterday and then selling it with out ringing it into the cash register. These guys were putting the money directly into their pockets. Now if I have a complaint about the food or want to get my money back I have no receipt. Very Cleaver...

I tried to call, but apparently these dorks are using it to talk to their girl friends.

In this case Kentucky Fried Chicken will not have our business for a very very very long time.

Postal Customer is a Centerfold

Two people were ahead of me at the post office. One was a young woman with an affected 1970s hippie free lovin' Daisy Mae veneer with messy braids and ratty jeans with tears in the rear. She didn't look old enough to have even been born in the 70s. The other was a generic short shorn guy with a head and face as interesting as a potato. I have no idea how old he was, he looked like he could've been my age, he looked like he could've been half my age. It's so hard to tell with the potatoboy look. Potatoboy was wearing a red t-shirt that said "JGB World Tour 1980" on the back. Daisy Mae was wearing a yellow t-shirt, however I couldn't see what was on the front. Potatoboy was quite fascinated by it, however, and he stared and asked her, "What does your t-shirt say?"

Affecting a wide-eyed innocent yet skanky attitude, she responded, "Love at first sight."

Potatoboy smiled and asked, "Do you believe in it?"

"Doesn't everybody?" she asked.

Potatoboy smiled back, a bit mesmerized. I think I heard him mutter, "I guess so."

A bit nauseated by the whole exchange, it suddenly hit me, Ms. Rock 'n' Roll Trivia: JGB = J. Geils Band.

Didn't The J. Geils Band have a hit, somewhere around 1980 or shortly thereafter called "Love Stinks?"

The irony.

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Presidential Lobotomy

My appropriation of the Ramones' "Teenage Lobotomy"

Lobotomy, lobotomy, lobotomy, lobotomy!
Karl Rove left his job on me
Now all I've got is Cheney
Guess I'll have to face the news
That there's still the war to lose
But the Right's still in love with me
I'm a presidential lobotomy!

The Democrats are after me
But Gonzales still keeps me happy
Now I guess I'll have to tell 'em
I've got a bill of goods to sell 'em
Who needs diplomacy
I'm a presidential lobotomy!

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Things that are pissing me off right now, August Edition

I just realized it's the thirteenth, and a month ago I wrote an entry called "Things that are pissing me off right now", so, what the hey, I'll make it a monthly thing. So without further ado, here's the August version of:

Things that are pissing me off right now

My Healthcare organization/HMO that keeps canceling appointments at my inconvenience.

The republicans in my state's legislature who want to cut all sorts of funding, namely, ALL funding to Wisconsin Public Broadcasting. Evil effing bastards.

When my mom says those little passive-aggressive things like "I'm glad I don't remember all the things MY parents did that made me mad" when I bring up some bad thing my dad did to me back when I was young.

The fact I didn't think of responding back with: "Oh, don't worry mom, I don't remember ALL the things you and dad did that made me mad--and you should be glad of that" until just now.

Republicans.

SPAM that is not filtered out.

Legitimate email that gets labeled as SPAM and that takes me several days to find since I don't always weed out my junk filters regularly.

Republicans.

People with the "I have a great life and I don't want to have to pay taxes so those less fortunate can have a decent life too" attitude. Seriously, I heard someone call in to a radio talk show today and they said they have a great job and great health care and they don't want to have their taxes raised and have universal health care because that will mess *their* health care up. I wanted to reach through the radio and strangle this guy. Selfish selfish selfish.

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Lobotomy! Lobotomy!/Sex Dream with Rove in the Background

What a unique time in history! Starting in September, we will have the first lobotomized president in office! Karl Rove, aka Bush's Brain, is leaving at the end of this month.

I heard this on the news this morning, but I was extremely tired and didn't process it other than to incorporate it into my dreams. I dreamt I was watching Karl Rove, but I didn't know whether it was in person or on TV. He looked different than he did IRL...he was taller, skinnier, extremely disheveled ...he had scraggly wavy long hair tied in a pony tail, sometimes it was dark, other times it was grey, with facial hair. He was wearing a leather vest and jeans. He looked like a stuck-in-the-70s drug addict one would find around the downtown saloons in Fort Collins in the 1980s. He kept moving around, twitching, jerking, like drug addicts often do, not stiff like he was IRL like during his Horrible Hip Hop "MC Rove" performance at a press dinner several months ago.

While I was "watching" this Karl Rove thing, I was also being pawed by some guy while I was in a store looking at beads and jewelry. It was turning me on. I thought maybe I could use him, but then figured it wouldn't be fair to Stan.

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Friday, August 10, 2007

Univega Cult


I had my bicycle in storage for 18 years and bring it out to ride I find that I own some sort of cult classic bicycle? My bicycle is a Univega Gran Premio and to my surprise people are still racing with these frames and I soon found this on my Univega web search - "Women's World Cup - 5th Gran Premio Castilla y Leon Nicole Cooke wins in Spain." People are racing with these things and I learned that there are people watching places like E-Bay to bid for these bicycles as if they are looking for collectors items. I watched a Univega auction and the bicycle sold for nearly as much as I payed for mine new in 1982, but that one was in a lot better condition than mine.

When I was a sophomore in undergraduate school I owned a bright red Schwinn Letour that I bought as a sophomore in high school. I loved that bicycle, but it weighed almost 40 pounds and it made me feel like a little boy. I traded in my beautiful red Schwinn for a blue 21 pound road bicycle and soon discovered this new Univega was a thrill to ride. It was almost like a racing bicycle, less expensive than the European racing bicycles I was wishing to buy, and my new Univega was made in Japan. I think the Univega was much more affordable than any of the 21 pound European racing choices because they were new and the company probably wanted to promote interest in them. I didn't have a credit card as a sophomore in college, so having to pay cash the Univega Gran Premio was the best I could afford in 1982. I used this bicycle for transportation until 1989, when it went into storage as Ann and I moved to Wisconsin, and remained ignored until 2007.

The rear derailleur fell to pieces within a year after I first bought the bicycle and I replaced it with a Campagnolo Nuovo Record rear derailleur. This is probably as close as I will ever come to owning a European racing bicycle. Mostly, the Univega had been a very good ride, and this summer when Ann and I decided to start riding bicycles again I thought I should see if my old bicycle was worth fixing up for the road.

I thought my old Univega would be a forgotten make and that the Univega company was probably long gone. I understand they were reabsorbed by Raleigh and stopped making bicycles in the late 1990s. I was almost hoping that no one cared about these bicycles anymore so I could ride my old bicycle without having to worry about it or attracting any attention. This is not the case and because people are still racing with these frames I decided to spend a lot more money on a bicycle lock than I would have if these things were a forgotten make.

I guess spending more for a lock it's not that big of a deal. When I use to ride in my 20s I never had a helmet and took off all of my reflectors to make my bicycle lighter. I now have all of the reflectors back on, and the only thing I won't put back on is the kick stand. Bicycling now in my 40s I have a helmet, reflectors, 3 lights, and 2 locks, so there is a lot more equipment involved. I don't like having all of this equipment and weight, but still it is a joy to ride my old Univega Gran Premio.

Today while I was waiting at a stoplight I caught a young woman looking at my Univega with longing interest in her eyes - I guess I unknowingly bought a classic when I was 25 years younger. I smiled very briefly at her and went on my way as soon as the light changed. Whether other riders are interested or shun my Univega I'm very happy I still have this one to ride to work and for fun.

Ann bought a new Trek bicycle when I took mine in to be repaired and I'm excited that we can go for bicycle ridding together again.

Look at the lettering on this bicycle.

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Wednesday, August 01, 2007

Stupido

Typical University of Wisconsin cancellation of schedules, Typical United States Health Care, Typical Bullshit.

Stan and I had to switch healthcare providers at the beginning of the year because his job changed it for union employees. I had to schedule two yearly exams, one for eyes, one for...the other thing. On the day of my eye appointment, they called in the morning to reschedule because the doctor had a meeting to go to. Today, they called to reschedule my...other...appointment, which was more than a month away. While they were on the phone, I told them that I thought they only had to do the pap smear every three years or so if you're over 40 and had a negative result history. After all, I had just recently received something in the mail from them that stated that. Unfortunately, I threw the info away. They STRONGLY denied that and said I had to have one every year. My previous healthcare provider had switched to doing it every 3 years, but no, not UW healthcare.

Here is proof, however, direct from the horse's mouth, posted on UW Health's own site:

AGE 40 - 65
• Women should have a yearly pelvic exam and Pap smear done to check for cervical cancer and other disorders. If your Pap smears are negative for 3 years in a row, have your Pap smear done every 2 - 3 years.

Well, mine's been negative for freakin-ever.

Typical administration not telling the doctors or nurses or receptionists or whoever is in charge of telling ME what their correct procedures are.

I'm printing out that sheet and bringing it in with me whenever I see them. I'll probably have to cancel and reschedule a few times before then, and by then, it will be three years anyway. Typical bullshit.

I hate the UW. My and Stan's experiences there as grad students don't bode well for my future experiences there with their health care system.

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