Sunday, August 28, 2005

For Your Reading and Viewing Pleasure

I'm going to be a bit of a lame poster today and not really post anything of my own. I am, however, going to give you a few blogs to check out that I like to visit regularly. If I can remember how, I am going to link them on my list as well. So, without further ado...

I have no idea about what the author of this blog is saying since it is not in a language I can understand but, for the most part, it mainly seems to be photos anyway. And a picture truly is worth a 1,000 words.
Iranian Photo Blog

This is a blog I like to check out regularly becaue I just never know what I'm going to find here. Sometimes political, sometimes cultural, but always something interesting.

This gal is just a hoot to read.
Miss Doxie

This guy is someone I'd like to hang out with.
My Life As A Gas Station Attendant

This is a blog where people write down their secrets on a post card and send it in to this dude who then posts it on this blog. It makes me feel not so strange after all.
Post Secret

This guy has a lot of time on his hands. I wish he'd come stay at our house.
The Forgotten Technology

Ok, that's it for today folks. I realize that I have a rather scant audience as it is and I may be taking a big risk by posting links to much more interesting and well written blogs but oh well. I hope you enjoy them as much as I do.

Thursday, August 25, 2005

Just Some Kooky Stuff


I bet you didn't expect to hear from me again so soon.

Nothing exciting but just some silly things I wanted to make note of.

Today, I made my usual stop at the gas station/convenience store for breakfast (coffee and donut, thank you very much). I brought my purchase to the counter for check-out and the clerk rings up my item and then says "Did you have gas today?" To which I was forced to reply "No, I don't usually get that until after lunch."

It went unnoticed. Oh well.

Next item.

An attorney we work with called the office the other day and I answered the phone. During the usual course of small talk, he proceeded to tell me about a certain Jennifer Hyatte who tried to bust her boyfriend out of police custody and wound up killing someone in the process and how much she looked like me. This was all going on in the news a week or so I guess and, not having TV, I had no idea what the story was. After I got off the phone with him, I mentioned this to one of my co-workers and she agreed whole heartedly that, yes indeed, she looked just like me.

Curiosity eventually got the better of me and I decided to go online and try to find a picture of my twin. Now, apparently what happened is she changed her appearance after the incident so I actually found two photos.

So do I look like this?

Image hosted by

Or is it perhaps this?

Image hosted by

In either case, um, thanks a lot. That really makes a girl's day. My co-worker, after seeing the pictures I found, immediately swore that she saw a much better picture of this gal. Okaaaaayyyyy....... Like I said, thanks a lot.

And the last item for today.

Yesterday, hubby and I had appointments at the eye doctor. Need to be able to see and all that, you know. So while we are sitting in the waiting area, hubby picks up the magazine on the top of the pile and says "Look. We can sit and read Glamour together" knowing full well that I never read these kinds of publications. Anyway, being the good sport I am, I look over as he flips through, scanning articles such as How To Flatten That Problem Tummy, Why And How Often Do Men Masturbate?, Fashion Sense For Those Who Have None Of Their Own, etc. Finally, he stops on a page where the gist of the article is that people - readers supposedly - write in with their problems and some copy editor proposes to solve them in a paragraph or two. He points out one where a woman is so unhappy with her body that she has a problem wearing a bathing suit and is embarrassed to undress in front of her husband. Dr. Whoeveritis gives the advice that we must all learn to be happy with ourselves la dee da.

Then I pointed out the ad on the page facing the the article which is this...

Image hosted by

Oh, irony... thy name is Glamour.

Monday, August 22, 2005

Judgemental? Moi'?

Hi there everyone.

Since I don't lead an exciting life, all I have to post on is my rather mundane one.

Here goes...





Well! There you have it! Just another exciting day in the life of Mz. Quintessence!

Actually there is one weird thing. I had to go to the store for dog food yesterday morning. Since all I was getting was the dog food (and a COKE!) I was able to slip into the 10 Items Or Less line.

Now, being the curious sort that I am, I am usually that annoying person in line behind you - or in front of you - giving a sideways glance to see what you're buying. I think the items we buy in the 10 Items Or Less line tend to be those emergency things that we make a special trip out for and that can tell the world a lot about our lives. What things we so desperately need that we will take the time out of a beautiful sunny Sunday morning and go to the grocery store.

Well, the guy in front of me was buying orange juice and milk. He refused the offer of peaches for 79 cents a pound that I suppose all the clerks have been instructed to push on the patrons. Upon closer inspection, I noticed he was wearing dress pants and a striped dress shirt.

My take on this dude is that he is an attorney who leads a life only slightly more exciting than mine, mainly due to the fact that he is an alcoholic. That makes it more exciting, I mean. Not that it's only slightly more exciting because of him being an alcoholic, as in, if he weren't an alcoholic, his life would be much more exciting. It's just that it's probably as mundane as mine with the slight alteration of alcohol fueled days. Thereby giving it a little bit of variation. Am I getting this across? Is the horse dead yet?

So anyway...

I'm the next one in line. And naturally - or, actually probablly not naturally at all - I have to analyze myslef and what my groceries might be telling the world about me. Dog food and Coke. This tells me that my dogs have a better diet than I do. And, generally, I'm an ok person who is kind to animals.

Now the next guy...

I'm ashamed to admit that even I - the 10 Items Or Less Line Sociologist - troubled over this one for quite some time.

The next guy had a pack of cigars and a container of Metamucil. He was about a week and a half unshaven, wearing a dirty T-shirt and shorts, crazy hair and - as best as I can guess - in his 50's.

This guy vexed me at least until the clerk handed me my change when Ding! that light bulb in my head - which can go from a dull, lifeless glow to a brilliant blinding light with alarming speed - signaled the moment of clarity. All at once it was easily apparent.

This guy is a misunderstood genius, laboring away in his, um, laboratory, living off of beta-carboline loaded fried spam sandwiches because he is too busy devising a way to make a Yuengling powered engine to save his county from the looming peak oil crisis to take time out to have any kind of a healthy diet, resulting in ... well, you know ... the need for the Metamucil.

The cigars? Something to do while on the hopper.

And all of a sudden I kind of liked this guy's thinking. I mean, here he is, stuck what...5-6 hours a day? the john, and what does he do? He has a cigar. He relishes every moment of life. Doesn't waste a single minute. Even in such...circumstances...he manages to make it enjoyable and be dignified about it.

You go, Metamucil Guy! You teach us all a lesson about life!

And please, everyone? Don't ruin this for me by bringing up the possiblilty of a Hustler laying on the toilet tank lid, OK?

Tuesday, August 16, 2005

The Fragility of Life

Or: Don't Put All Your Hopes In One Watermelon

Well, being that it's the height of summer, I suppose everyone's garden is bursting forth with excessive bounty. Right?

I wouldn't know.

Not that I don't have a garden. I do. Well, kind of. Let's put it this way, there's a garden on my property. I don't really consider it "my garden". Here's the story...

After we bought our property, there was kind of a general family consensus - extended family, that is - that our place would be a great spot for a sort of communal garden. Being the hippie sort that I am, I was all up for the idea. At first. Not that I'm against the idea now - that's not it at all. What is it? Well, a combination of things...

First would be paying the mortgage. See, there's this big, fat - really big, fat - mortgage bill that comes due every month. And, unfortunately, someone has to pay it. That someone would be us. I mean, not you and me, hubby and me. So, in order to pay the mortgage, there's this whole messy business of having a job. Strike one against the garden.

Next - I think I may have mentioned this before - but I live in a behemoth of an old farm house. You know, the one with a leaky roof and no heat in the winter? That one. And it would be one thing if I lived in it alone. But no, I share this delightful abode with a husband, two teenagers, two dogs, and three cats. All inside. Like within the walls. With all their assorted stuff, habits and hairballs. So, when the choice of "Shall I go weed that garden for an hour?" or "I have to wash the flippin flappin laundry - that was sitting in a basket waiting to be folded - again because one of the cats decided it would be a better spot to pee than the litter box!" comes up, the garden has to go on hold.

And then there's the whole thing that when I finally decide to break away from all this other crap, do I really want to spend my time bent over, standing out in the hot sun, playing Russian Roulette with the weather? How about I spend precious time that could go to painting the living room - I love to piant - digging around in the dirt, getting sunburned and bitten by mosquitoes so all of my hard work can be wiped out by 8 straight weeks of no rain and tempertaures in the 150's? Or, alternatively, 8 straight weeks of rain and temperatures hovering just above Absolute Zero? Um, no. The answer is no.

And last, but by no means least, there is the power struggle. I have a husband - who would plow the garden with an organically grown, grass fed horse - trying to garden with his brother who would spray Round-Up on all the paths between the plants. To me, this garden is somewhat akin to a small African nation. You never know who is going to be in power and I'm willing to hide in the forest so as not to get my head lopped off with a machete. Or chain saw. Leaking oil.

It is because of all this that I take my delight in my kitchen compost pile.

It doesn't get any easier than this. I put all my scraps in a bucket, and take it to a corner of what I think used to be a little kichen garden at some previous point in the history of our farm, and dump it. That's it. I don't expect anything. The funny thing is, since I don't really compost correctly and turn it ever like a good girl should, there are often things growing out of the pile. For instance, I have seen a healthy crop of garlic, decorative gourds and...

a Watermelon!

Well, the beginnings of a watermelon. It was about as big as a hacky sack. (I'm not too much of a hippie, am I?) So cute! My precious little watermelon.

And that is when I made the mistake I try not to make with growing produce. I got attached to it. I would check on it, making sure it wasn't getting attacked by the bugs that were vexing my husband and brother-in-law in the "real" garden. I would turn it once in a while to make sure the bottom didn't start to rot. I would lovingly caress it and talk about what college it might want to attend. Oh, the dreams we had!


Then, one fateful night, it all came to an end. I would like to say it came to a juicy, delicious end but that's not the case. Well, as least I wouldn't know if it was.

You see, on that dark and dreary night - I can still barely talk about it - I was finishing up milking the goat and took the milk inside. I came back out to put the goat in her pen and she was on her way to the compost pile. I hightailed it after her. She ran. I ran. She ran faster. I ran faster. She could hear me bearing down on her, my breath hot on her hindquarters. (This all took place over the space of about 20 feet, by the way.) She leaped into the compost pile just as I grabbed her harness. She locked her legs in that stubborn way she does when all she wants to do is wander around and eat instead of going to bed. I locked my legs and heaved with all my might. She budged. I began the step-heave method I've come to know as my routine for putting the goat away.


Through the compost pile.


I knew immediately what the squish was. I couldn't look down for I knew - I knew! - my beloved little watermelon was gone.

And, to add insult to injury, as soon as I stepped off my watermelon - Oh! Little Watermelon! You never even had a chance! - as SOON as I stepped off of it, the goat snatched it up in her evil little head and ate it.


I never had the urge to beat livestock before but I can see how it can happen.

I put the goat in her pen, called her some unflattering names, and went in.

After a while, I began to look at this in a philosophical sort of way. I tried to control the watermelon. I wanted it to be mine. It was taken from me. There you go.

So, instead of trying to control the goat, I am going to practice letting things be. I left her loose on Interstate 81 this morning.

Just kidding.

Monday, August 08, 2005

For Sale: One Identity, Slightly Used


It's me.

Remember me?

I figured it was time for an update on my very-oh-so-exciting life because I know you all are waiting with bated breath - or possibly bad breath? - to see what I've been up to lately.



No, really. When I say nothing, I mean nothing. Ok, I guess not really nothing because I am doing those regular things we all must do to get through life day to day. More like nothing really exciting.

At any rate...

You will all be happy to know that it would appear as though my dear hubby's identity is pobably not stolen after all. Because Lo! I have located the insurance and registration cards for my car (which, if you are just joining us for the first time, I thought were stolen when the car was. See below.) Yes, it would seem as though they were under the passenger seat of the car all along. Insert sheepish grin here.

How did I finally find them? Something rolled under there. Something that I apparently needed and could not just let roll into the netherworld of Underthecarseat and, when I reached under to get it, I had to pull out a bunch of stuff first and, well, there they were. Along with an old orange, the deed to my house, the cat that ran away a few years ago and Amelia Earhart. So, it would seem as though my hubby's identity is safe after all. Which leads me to this...

I have decided to sell my identity.

Or try to.

Now, the unfortunate part of this is that I am Catholic. Which, in itself is not the problem because I'm sure there are plenty of folks out there who could work with that particular feature. No, the problem with being Catholic is that I will be guilted into disclosing the truth about it - my identity, that is. This whole Catholic thing also works very much against me as I am in the sales business but what can ya' do?

So here's the pitch...

Looking for a change? Had enough of the normal life? Just can't stand yourself anymore? Why not consider being me? Just consider the benifits of the Ms. Quintessence Identity ...

- You get to be 5'2"! Sick and tired of walking into low hanging pipes in basements? Well, with your new Ms. Quintessence Identity, you don't have to worry about those nasty golf ball lumps on the head. No more conking the ol' melon getting into your car. Usually. And you never have to worry about reaching items on the top shelf at the grocery store again!

- You will get to work in the real estate business! Why go to that same old hum-drum job where you can count on a pay check every week? As the new Ms. Quintessence, you can deal with overly emotional people spending large amounts of money - or not - and never have a stable income again!

- You will be the owner of a big old farm house! Sick and tired of going home to a house where the roof doesn't leak, the basement isn't wet and you have hot water on a regular basis? As the new Ms. Quintessence, you can forget about that! Wake up every morning to the exciting possiblity of your shower being 55 degrees! Listen to the calming sound of trickling water during the rain storms - in your own dining room! Live in a home that would be an entomologist's dream! Milk a goat every freaking night!

- You will have a Victoria's Secret credit card! But your body will be such that the idea of actually purchasing anything from the store will make you laugh until you cry. Unless, of course, you are currently suffering from PMS in which case you will pretty much only cry. And eat. Bad things. Like ice cream and Jolly Ranchers and ice cream. And be very irritable in general. To everybody. Except the women who are the clerks at the grocery store because they understand. And your lovers - Ben and Jerry.

- You will own very desirable cars! See previous posts.

- You will have a very hard time remembering things! Bad memories? Childhood trauma? The grocery list? Your new identity will wipe your brain clear of all that clutter along with other unnecessary minutia such as important phone numbers, your children's doctor appointments, your mother-in-law's birthday and everything before 10:42 this morning. Clean slate!

- You will have very grand ideas! And no finances to see them through. Or the stick-to-it-tive-ness to even figure out the details in the first place. But this won't stop you from delving into home rennovation projects with wild abandon.

- You will have a great love for garlic! And no regard for its effects on your family or friends!

And last but certainly not least...

- You will have flat feet!

Just listen to what other people have said about being Ms. Quintessence...

"I've been Ms. Quintessence for over 35 years and that's a long time!" - Ms. Quintessence

"People think I'm pretty strange sometimes..." - Ms. Quintessence

"I could really use a break." - Ms. Quintessence

"Did anyone see where I put the car keys?" - Ms. Quintessence

That's right! And if you act now, I'll throw in my permission for unlimited use of the phrases "What the crap?" and "Flippin' flappin'" (ie. "I can't get this flippin'flappin' thing to work!")!

DON'T DELAY! This offer won't last long and there is only 1 identity left! It can be yours for the low, low price of ...



make an offer!