Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Be vewwy vewwy kwiet...

...We'ah hunting mushwooms!

It's almost mushroom season. I have been mushroom hunting since I was eight years old. Morel mushrooms are a very rich, meaty mushroom that grows all over the US (I even found one once when I was living in Alaska) They resist cultivation so if you want them, you pretty much have to find them.

They tend to pop up in early to mid-May. But we've had some very warm and fairly wet weather recently and I'm hoping to get into the Woods very soon!

I've never gone mushroom hunting here in Illinois, so I don't know the hottest spots. And no true mushroom hunter would tell me unless I were related to him, and probably not even then.

Mushroom hunters are a cagey bunch. They jealously guard their prime spots.

I rememeber once finding a mother lode while hunting with my dad and brother. We found dozens of morels in the center of a dying peach grove. The ground was just covered in them and we filled all of our bags. I found the first one. And then my brother found one and then I found another and then we stopped and took a look at the big picture and realized that the whole ground in this small circle of dying fruit trees was covered in the precious little beauties.

As we were leaving the woods, returning to the car, two men had just parked and were clearly getting ready to hunt for mushrooms themselves. My dad hissed at us to hide our fungal booty and when the two new-comers asked us if we'd had any luck, I opened my mouth to pipe up "YES!" but got an elbow in my ribs from David as a reward.

"Only a couple," my dad lied easily.

And this is not unusual.

And, as an adult, I now understand it completely. Just a picture of a morel makes my heartrate kick up. I don't even care about eating them. I just want to FIND them. You'd think it was easy to spot a tender beigey-pink lovely among the green grass, but you'd be surprised.

I can't wait to get out there!!!!

Thursday, April 23, 2009

I don't get it...

So, I generally try to avoid talking politics on my blog, but there's an issue that's really been bothering me lately.

It's the whole torture thing.

What really astounds me is the number of people who see absolutely nothing wrong with it. Nevermind that it violates the Geneva Conventions. Nevermind that it's exactly the sort of thing that we would be up in arms over if some other government did it to our citizens. Nevermind that it is flat out WRONG.

But the icing on the cake, for me, was John McCain, an outspoken critic of torture (having been a victim of it himself) suggesting that we NOT prosecute the people who enabled and even encouraged this shameful practice on American soil by representatives of the American People.

It makes me sick.

Apparently, he thinks we should just say "mea culpa" and move on with no accountability.


And Cheney wants to parade the fact that it was apparently "successful" in gathering information. In my opinion, there is no success here. It is a first class FAILURE of everything that America stands for.

I love this country. I love the freedoms and liberties and innovative spirit it was built on. I love everything it stands for. It does NOT stand for torture.

Torture may be the "easy" way, but it is NOT the American way. We're better than this. Or at least, I thought we were.


PS: Angela, I thought we were going to hear about your weirdo date who made fun of you for baking cookies. What kind of guy doesn't like a chick who bakes????

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Happy Dance!

So I got called into the Director's office an hour ago. I wasn't too worried because I've been a good little employee lately (though I do harbor secret fears that my Topix addiction may be discovered by the Evil IT Overlords)

I sat down with her and my boss, thinking that we were there to discuss a problem employee or an on-going project that has been perpetually stalled.

But no!

They gave me a promotion!!!!

It's not a lot more money and there will be a several additional (un-fun) responsibilities, but I totally wasn't expecting it!

I am seriuosly touched that they made that effort on my behalf and I even got a little teary.


Friday, April 10, 2009


I went on a date last night. I was very excited about it because I had spoken to him on the phone several times and each time we had long, fun conversations. We seemed to communicate well.

But the date itself did not turn out quite so well.

He was cute. The conversation was pretty good, but he rarely asked me any questions about me. Instead I got a lot of work stories and learned about him, which was great because I was honestly interested in him. I was willing to put down his apparent lack of interest in my life to sheer nervousness.

He was clearly nervous, but his body language did not give me a lot of hope. He leaned away from me a lot and made no effort to touch me, even causually.

Again, I was willing to put this down to first date nerves.

But then he got a phone call. Politely, he glanced at his phone and then turned it off. Good. But a few minutes later, he excused himself to go to the restroom and was gone for quite a while.

When he came back, he made no secret of the fact that he had returned the call. And here's where things get very odd.

Apparently, a friend of his was down in the city and had gotten into a fight with his girlfriend. During this time, the friend had accidentally locked his keys in his car. So he called my date (who lives in the NW burbs) because apparently my date carries spare keys to his friend's car around with him.

W T F???

To be fair, my date did not ditch me right away. But the date did end relatively soon thereafter.

This really seemed like an "emergency call" to me (and I didn't even know that guys did this!)

But we were already close to the end of the date. It was 9:30 and he could easily have excused himself saying he had to work in the morning. That's exactly why you do first dates during the week.

But I'm simply speechless. And kind of hurt.

I could be wrong. I hope I'm wrong. But it's very very strange.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Ow Ow Ow Ow!

So, I definitely have plantar fasciitis. Which is basically an injury to the tissue along the arch of the foot. It's a killer b/c while it heals overnight, it re-tears with every step you take the next day.

So. My hot podiatrist (seriously, this guy is DREAMY!!!!) told me I can't run (or walk for exercise) for two weeks. Sharon told me it would be better to wait a whole month.

So in the meantime, I'm supposed to stay off of it as much as possible. Which makes my cardio workouts really limited. I can swim (yeah, right!), row (fun, but get's sooooo boooooring after 10 minutes) or bike.

I've been resisting the bike. I don't hate it but it too gets boring after a while. So Sharon's been strong-arming me into taking a spin class.

I finally did this morning. Aside from the trauma of having to hear that horrilbe "Tears on My Guitar" song (which henceforth I had avoided being subjected to) set to a dance/spin beat, it wasn't that bad. I didn't love it, but it wasn't horrible.

But now my tush hurts like hell and for a while there other parts ... girly parts that I am rather attached to .... hurt like hell too.

But I survived. I'm sure I'll never hear the end of it from Sharon. Or Garth.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

April Fool?

My dad is my accountant. He's also a complete smartass. I'm not sure why I didn't inherit the smartass gene.


I'm refinancing my mortgage (rates are sooooo low!) and I need my last two years' W2s. Now, I could dig through my own not-very-organized filing system (doesn't everyone just shove stuff in a shopping bag?) or I could call my accountant, aka Dad.

So, obviously, I called my dad.

EEE: Morning, Daddy.
Dad: Good morning, EEE.
(exchange of pleasantries la la la)
EEE: So, I'm refinancing my mortgage and I need my last two years' W2s. Do you still have those on file?
Dad: Yeah right. They've been shredded. April Fool.
EEE: Huh? I'm refinancing. I'm getting below 5%.
Dad: Yeah right.
EEE: Why would I joke?
Dad: Because it's April Fool's Day.
EEE: Dad. Don't you think that if I were going to punk you this morning I'd come up with something better than "I'm doing a refi"???
Dad: You're serious?

Only, it took much longer than that to actually convince him. I don't know why...

Though, to be fair, last year my sister and I DID convince our mother that our brother's GF was preggers... Hehehe!

AND we are talking about a man who PROPOSED 40 years ago today. (She turned him down four times b/c she thought he was joking)

Happy Anniversery, Mom and Dad!!!