Thursday, March 31, 2011

Boycott AirTran! Boycott AirTran!

Back in December, Eddie and I set our sights on Aruba. Because no one from Air Tran informed us that our flight had been canceled until after we were in Georgia in a rented car on our way to his sister's house after taking a later flight (very helpful), Air Tran granted us two free tickets to anywhere they fly. We chose one of the more expensive trips and a destination that offered paradise.

We looked at the calendar and chose several options over the summer for when we could go. The airline flies to and from Aruba on Saturdays only. We would have to stay a week. We could live with that.

So Eddie called to book a flight. No seats were open. He tried another date. No seats were available. Again and again, he tried to book a flight and they were all booked. Then he asked the woman, what's up?

The woman was honest. She said that the flights aren't full. What happens is that they wait until the last minute to allow people to use vouchers to book seats on a flight in the hopes that people will buy seats instead of getting them for free. So we would have to wait until like the day before to book a flight to Aruba, which means we would have to book a hotel for more money or lose a deposit on a hotel that we could cancel.

So, to be clear: Air Tran fucked up. They gave us "free tickets," also known as vouchers, to make up for it. And now they are limiting the way in which we can use the vouchers.

Basically, it's like saying, I give you these flowers because I fucked up, but you can't show them to anyone else and you need to put them in a yellow vase only and you have to display them on a table no taller than three feet high and only in a room with shag carpeting.


Here's a dollar to make up for my screw up. You can use it to buy yarn, nothing else.

Air. Tran. Sucks.

The siuation left the practical me in shambles. I didn't want to risk losing money on a hotel in such a fashion. Eddie suggested we go somewhere else, but no matter how near or far we go, we're stuck with the same situation. The only place we could go without my worrying is back to Georgia where we can stay with his sister and not have a hotel involved. Plus, I was now paranoid that they would bump us from a flight if paying customers arrived. While being stuck in Aruba for an extra week would be wonderful (as they fly in and out only one day a week), we can't afford a two week stay in paradise. We can't afford a two week stay anywhere. Except for his sister's house, but they have more flights in and out of Georgia, so we wouldn't be stuck for long.

That doesn't make up for it. Air Tran needs to go to its grandmother's house and learn some good old fashioned courtesy.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Connect 4

To celebrate R's bday, S's bf, Eddie and I went into Brooklyn to the fine tiki establishment, Zombie Hut. Why a tiki bar is named after the undead is beyond me. To get there, we followed the GPS, still figuring out the best way to get to that part of Brooklyn. We found that following the GPS was the wrong choice as we hit traffic hardcore. Most of the traffic was from an accident, but it was still a lot of red lights and a lot of idiots. To pass the time, we played "I'm Going On A Picnic." Eddie and I like to play games, so when I came across a list of games to play on a road trip in Car & Travel, I tore it out and showed it to him so we could gear up for our road trips we have planned for the future. I knew some of them already, but there were some new ones. Little did I know we would use it so quickly.

On our picnic, we brought: asparagus, bananas, cranberries, dog shit, egg creams, fruit, gazpacho, ham, ice, jelly, Kit Kats, Larry, muffins, Naima (the girl from American Idol), pie, quiche, something with an R that I can't remember, and salsa. Then the traffic cleared up and we stopped playing. You can probably tell who brought what.

We found a spot to park rather quickly after finding the bar. Then while walking to the bar, we hit more traffic in the form of a dad and his two daughters taking a leisurely stroll down the sidewalk in the freezing cold. We were not fans.

Reasons Zombie Hut rocks:
1. Large big screen projector tv.
2. No snootie, uber hip, utlra elite, or jerkoff clientele.
3. $5 drinks!
4. With fun names!
5. Tiki decor.
6. Board games.

Eddie, S, R, and I played a rousing game of Connect 4. Connect 4 has changed since we played the original version. First off, the "board" was blue and the chips were yellow and red. Twice, I almost used the wrong color. We kept wondering why the chips were falling out of the board at the bottom. I lost us the first game because, basically, I suck at Connect 4. We won one game.

Then after we packed it up, I flipped the box over because I had a sneaking suspicion that came to realization--there are several ways to play Connect 4. The chips are supposed to fall out if you set it up a certain way, and we had it set up in that way completely unknowingly. There are three ways to play: Classic for which you put one chip in at a time in the hopes of connecting four in a row, Pop Out 1 during which your chips can fall out at the bottom and the board changes, and Pop Out 2 for which you put all the chips in the board at random and then pop them out to connect four in a row. We were playing Classic Accidental Pop Out. That's the most challenging way to play overall.

Epilogue: The next day, I woke up with a hangover from having one drink. WTF.

Yoga For Sleepers

Tony Horton's P 90 X yoga is not my cup of yogi tea.

Fact: Yogi Tea is an actual brand. I usually drink Trader Joe's Green Tea. That's not the point here.

The point here is that Tony Horton sucks as a yogi. I can't stand his yoga instruction. I'm all for his "Don't smash your face" mantra. When he tells me that I can do anything for 30 seconds, I believe him (for the moment). The ideas of "Engage!" and "Breathe!" are very good ideas that I can get behind. But his yoga style is not a way to get me to stay on my mat for an hour and a half.

So instead, I've been replacing yoga day with Yoga Zone. I have a power yoga routine on VHS that I've been doing on and off since VHS was a popular form of entertainment. Eddie has been doing it along with me because we've had yoga on the same day. Eddie has gotten through the tape by making such commentary as "Where did that duck come from?" (there are several birds in the outdoor scene where the three yogis are doing yoga--none are ducks, but he likes to call them ducks) and "Nice green shorts and pink shirt" to the guy wearing green shorts and a pink shirt and "There's no way he's getting that" also referring to the guy in the green shorts and pink shirt after I told him that the guy is married to the woman leading the yoga routine, a pretty blonde girl. Who, as Eddie has pointed out, apparently has camel toe.

This week, Week 4, is a restorative week meant to change up the routine and transition into the next phase of P 90 X. To keep things interesting, I switched out our yoga routine from Yoga Zone to Shiva Rea's Yoga for Beginners, which first led him to such commentary as "Shiva Rea Leonard?" and "There are two things you need to do yoga--join a cult and have camel toe." Apparently, Shiva Rea has camel toe also.

Then his snark disappeared as we went through the routine. At first, he complained that he was having a problem simply sitting. However, as we moved between poses, he realized that Shiva Rea likes to lie down a lot. The routine was over an hour, but a lot of the time until the very end, she instructs you to lie down on your stomach and rest with your head on your hands. Basically, we were laying there. At one point, I looked over at him and he was contentedly lying down with a big smile on his face. He mumbled, "Hmmm, I like this pose." By the end, I was bored out of my mind and he was a changed man, ready to join a cult and hike up his pants.

Next yoga day, I'll be doing Tony Horton's Yoga By The Bad Yogi and Eddie will be doing the yoga routine for people who like to sleep. I'll be in pain and he'll be in heaven. Yeay for working out together.

Friday, March 25, 2011

For The Sake Of Education

Act Now!

Tell your senator and Gov. Cuomo to protect kids, not millionaires.

Call your state senator and the governor at: 1-877 255-9417 (NYS AFL-CIO
ACTION LINE.) When prompted, press 1 for the governor or 2 to be connected
to the state Senate operator. Ask the operator to connect you to your
senator's office.

Tell the governor and your senator to extend the millionaire's tax, rather
than cutting vital services for students and seniors. Extending this tax
would impact few, while cutting $1.5 billion from education would hurt

Please call today and through the weekend.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Working On The Line

Dance class began on time, meaning before 8. I walked in behind the two women who have mullets. As soon as I walked through the door, I was gasping for air. Something. Smelled.

The takes-up-space woman jumped on me as soon as I walked through the door to the dance room--where's your friend? S has been upgraded. I said she was sick. I was on my own.

One of the women with the mullet and I discussed the smell. It was strong. It was gross. I was hoping it wasn't lethal. People opened lots of windows, which they do anyway because we get hot quickly.

We all started dancing despite the smell. We did one dance--Irish Stew-- and I was really hot and the smell was really intense. I took off my long-sleeved top immediately. The room was freezing, but I was sweating. The room smelled. I smelled. Don't be jealous.

The sweet woman who dances always one beat ahead or behind left. She couldn't breathe.

Another woman tied jacket around her face. Jean said, Don't worry, no one is watching you--they're all watching their feet.

Jean? Is one funny lady! 1. Sarcasm! I like it! 2. Despite the fact that everyone did see the woman, they all DO look at their feet when they dance! I look at my feet for the dances that I'm learning; I do my best to keep my head up when I know the dance. Or I watch the feet of the people three rows ahead of me. Which is hard to do when I'm in the back and we're facing the back wall and no one is in front of me. I've started watching our reflection in the windows when I don't know what I'm doing.

Then one of the mullets left. She couldn't take the smell.

Jean said that the smell had something to do with work the maintenance staff was doing on the chlorine tanks. The smell was not chlorine. It was like shellac in a meth lab.

Some interesting observations for S: Brown wore jeans and sneakers. One of the clique was late, the one who wears Loony Toons t-shirts. When she walked in, all dressed up in work attire, I didn't ask if she had a good dinner and I didn't yell out Tardy! in her face.

I noticed wide-denim-belt woman staring at me from time to time. I got paranoid. Does she know I've been writing about her fashion sense?

My main accomplishment of the evening: I learned the turn in the Bossa Nova! Finally!

Then we did a whole lot of dances all in a row: Chachanella, Black Magic, Burlesque, Cooler Than Me, and The Wonderland Waltz, which is the 3rd most popular dance in the world. Then Jean said, let's do Sweet Slow Stupid Song, but she put on the music for Hello Dolly. Had the fumes gotten to Jean?

Then with about twenty minutes left, Jean said we were going to learn the dance from the G E Commercial.

This is what it looks like in the commercial:

This is what it looks like when you do it in a cramped hallway:

It's a pretty simple dance. It's fun to do. We did it a bunch of times.

Then we did Walking in the Rain, aka the Christmas song that pretends not to be. While teaching, Jean admitted to feeling nauseaus and so we did the dance, which is sort of complicated when you're tired and can't breathe, and then ended ten minutes early.

The last mullet standing asked the clique what their names were as we were all packing up. They so did not want to answer. Reluctantly, they gave their real names. You know fake names were at the tip of the tongue but they wouldnt be able to get away with it. Then again, who would say anything?

Oh, wait a minute, maybe Jean would since she kind of scolded them during class when they were listening to a ring tone while Jean was teaching the G E commercial dance. She was like, take it outside if you're not going to pay attention ladies.

Go Jean. Go Jean. It's amazing what a little nausea will do to a person.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Just Not Right

Just Wright is a movie starring Queen Latifah (I love it when a woman gets top billing!) and Common and features Mrs. Huxtable and Foxy Brown, not the rapper, but the female version of Shaft.

Here's a quick plot summary that you can figure out from the commercials so I don't think this is much of a spoiler alert. If you are bad at figuring out plots of simple movies that follow a basic romantic comedy formula, then I suppose this is a spoiler, but you should also look into watching more movies.

Leslie Wright is a physical therapist who cannot find love because she's too much of a "homegirl" (that's the word in the movie; I know I sound like an ass using the word "homegirl" which is why I put it in quotes). Her cousin Morgan, who is beautiful and wants to score a professional athlete as a husband, lives with her. When Leslie bumps into professional basketball player Scott McKnight, she gets invited to his birthday, where he and her cousin meet up and eventually fall in love and get engaged. BUT THEN Scott gets hurt, and who's there to make his knee all better? Leslie Wright! And who leaves him in his time of need? Morgan. And then? I'm sure you know. And if you don't, again, you need to watch more movies.

Here's the problem. No matter which way they spin it, Leslie Wright is still second choice. No matter how poorly the pretty girl treats the muscleman, no matter how genuine the friendship between the athlete and the "homegirl" becomes, no matter how wrong he realizes he's been, Leslie Wright is still second choice, which proves that "homegirls" finish last. I may be mixing metaphors but you know what I mean.

Just like Shallow Hal, this movie aims at proving that "u cant judge a book by it's cover" and "everything glittery aint gold" and "beauty is on the inside of the skin" (I'm stealing these gems from some recent papers I graded for which I specifically instruct Do not use cliches). In attempting to teach people to be the bigger person and to look past the exterior into the person's character and spirit, they teach that it's still okay to go for the pretty first and that the ugly will still be waiting there for you because the ugly don't move on.

(No, no, no, Leslie Wright. Do not let him charm you with the "brushing the chin" move. Slowly back away from the man in the million dollar suit).

Queen Latifah is not ugly. She's pretty, and she could kick my ass, which is why I'm clarifying. I'm using ugly as part of the general point of the lesson, not as an adjective to describe Queen Latifah.

Sidenote: During a recent semester, Queen Latifah came up during class discussion, and I don't know why exactly but it's not surprising because in a comp class, we talk about everything, and the students got into a rather long debate about whether or not Queen Latifah is a lesbian who is dating her personal trainer. Not that this conversation has anything to do with that debate other than it being about Queen Latifah, but it's my only Queen Latifah callback, so there you have it.

Plus, what's so great about Common? Queen Latifah is as tall if not taller than he is and he was supposed to be this amazing basketball player. Nice arms? Yes. But a basketball player? Who women fawn over? I suppose put a uniform and spray some fake sweat on a guy and he becomes the superstar.

Oh, and at his birthday celebration, there were basketball helium balloons as decorations. Really. Because he's 12.

Maybe I'm nitpicking. That doesn't dismiss the idea that the less than beautiful women become second place citizens. Leslie Wright should not have slept with Scott McNotKnight. She should have done her job, gotten the sweet NBA job, and married a different basketball player who chooses her FIRST while Scott McKnight should have wound up alone and maybe blown out his knee three seasons later. That's my idea of a happy ending. And that's why I don't write romantic comedies.

Sunday, March 20, 2011

What Kind Of Partner Exactly?

Dance class was more of a recap class. We didn't learn any new dances this week. That's probably because we learned every single dance known to man last week. S stayed late in the city after work, so I was dancing solo for a while. This made my snarky comments not as fun since they were all in my head and I couldn't mumble them to someone and then laugh out loud. The room inexplicably smelled like onions. I had no one to share that with for quite some time. It was like the first thing I said to S when she came in.

Also when she came in, some of the Clique told her that she was tardy and also asked if dinner was good. Then I told her that she's apparently my partner. One of the Clique asked me where my partner was. I said she stayed late at work and should be showing up soon. Then she didn't show up as soon as expected and I was thinking, If S doesn't show up, they're gonna think we had a partner's quarrel.

Not, Where's your friend, but, Where's your partner? As in dance partner? Partner in crime? Or do they think we're lesbians. Usually, people at dance ask if we're sisters. But now, we're partners.

The only other exciting part of class was when Jean surprised me during the Bossa Nova. I still cannot get the turn in this dance. I fake it pretty well though. I'm in the middle of fake turning and BAM out of nowhere, Jean's right next to me. I think she might have seen I was not doing it correctly and she moved there to help. Then she danced away from me during the next eight count and wound up making a large circle around the room. Which still smelled like onions.

Friday, March 18, 2011

Why I Enter Every Contest I Find

As I was answering the unscientific survey that sometimes repeats itself on the Women's Health Magazine website one morning as I do every morning, I thought, huh, I bet no one ever wins anything. These surveys sometimes have a blank choice. Not like "Other." A blank, like a programming snafu. Sometimes the survey asks a simple question that applies to everyone and will list answers in a way to make the question not apply to you. Or it will offer a "Doesn't Apply To Me" choice when it has to apply.

Like it will ask: Do you have any tattoos?

The choices would be:

(a) Yes and I regret it

(b) I really want one

(c) No way

(d) They are nice for others but not for me.

(e) Doesn't apply to me

First off, where the heck is the choice for "Yes, and I love it?" or "Yes, and I don't regret it."

Secondly, how doesn't it apply? Either you like them or you don't.

In any case, I go through these surveys almost every day. Every day, they offer a new prize according to that month's theme. Sometimes the theme is clothes, sometimes accessories, sometimes beauty, sometimes fitness. Every daily entry puts you in the running for winning a vacation.
I also enter contests like HGTV's Dreamhome Giveaway, and as I fill in the info every day, I think--would I move into this house? Would I sell it? Would the additional prize money be enough to cover the taxes I'd have to pay on winning the house? Would I use it as a rental?
Every day until their deadlines, I fill out forms for vacation contests sponsored by AAA. Sometimes I enter contests from The Travel Channel and on PLJ's website. I've even called in to PLJ. Once I got through. My guess was Donnie Osmond. The right answer was Bob The Bachelor.

A few days ago, I received a Polar Fitness Cross-Training Monitor in the mail that I'd won from Women's Health Mag. Despite their awkward phrasing and lack of scientific method, they came through. I had received an email saying I'd won something and asking me for my size. I had no idea what I'd won and I wrote back that I'm an extra-small anything. They'd sent me a link to the winners and what they'd won, but the link didn't work. Turns out, I'd won during a good theme month--gadgets or fitness or fitness gadgets. In any case, it's a great gift to get for free. We like free. We like contests.

Saturday, March 12, 2011

On Eating Turkey Jerky

Eddie decided to do P90X. For real. He's done it here and there but he never completed it. He's ready to do it for 90 days.

I decided to do P90X Lean. It uses the same DVDs in a different sequence. I'm ready to do it. Again.

Sidenote: Quite unfortunately for Tony Horton, Charlie Sheen has ruined the use of "bring it," which is the mantra of the workouts and the title of Tony Horton's book. Too bad Charlie Sheen wants everyone to bring it, too. Poor timing.

Eddie is eating massive amounts of healthy food to make sure he does not lose any weight while he gains muscle.

I am following the nutrition plan to get as lean as I can. I was flipping through the book when I found the suggestion of turkey jerky as a snack. I asked him, who eats turkey jerky? Where can you even get that?

Fast forward to food shopping. We're in an aisle with canned corn and right there, hanging from a row of clips, is turkey jerky. We were both slightly shocked. Apparently, you can get turkey jerky from a regular food mart. We bought it. When we got home, I tried it.

Turkey jerky looks gross. It's dried turkey and it looks exactly like that, which is not very appetizing. Think of what raw meat looks like. Then think about what it would like like dry and shriveled. Now pour pepper on it. Now break it into pieces. Yum.

It does not taste that bad. If I keep eating it, I'll develop a taste for it. I won't crave it, but I'll eat it.

Eddie, on the other hand, will never eat turkey jerky. You know how a king has a food taster? I kind of do that for him with certain foods. He's been a sport in trying new things, but he's not gonna get carried away by trying out dried poultry from a bag. As soon as I ate it, I was like, This is not going to be an option for you. He backed away from the bag, which is a good idea for anyone normal anyway. I would back away, too, if I were not following Tony Horton's How To Walk Like You Have A Stick Up Your Ass Workout.

FYI: We've both been in pain for the past week. It's not pretty. Hopefully, it will be worth it.

Jean Gets The Teaching Bug

Usually, the order of dance class is begin before class is supposed to start, do a dance you already know or learn a specific step you've gone over a bunch of times in the past, learn a new dance, repeat almost every dance you know, repeat the new dance you learned this class and already forgot, and end before class is actually over. This week, Jean changed things up and taught four new dances with some repeats in between.

We began with a lesson in a dance we did only once before. It seemed familiar and we did it to music, but still couldn't place it. Then Jean turned on Rod Stewart's Motown Song and I was ecstatic! Yes, this was the Motown Song Dance! If ever Jean were to pick a repeat, this is the one she should always pick. I love it love it love it. Sometimes she teaches us a dance one week and then never does it again. I thought that's what happened with this one and I'm happy to say I'm wrong.

We did not do Walking In The Rain this week, though, because we learned it last week and what's the point of repeating something new when you can repeat something old like Hello Dolly (yes, that's coming).

We first learned The Bossanova. It's the line dance version. It involves some spinning. I looked at S and was like, I told the doctor at the ER that we didn't spin a lot. I think I lied. She was like, We spin all the time. The Bossanova involves not only a half spin in one direction, but also a full spin the other way, right afterwards. I still don't know how to do it exactly, but I'm really good at faking it.

We did not have hats. We should look into getting hats.

Then Jean wanted to teach us the dance that's number one. She says this every week. We don't know who keeps track of line dance popularity or to which chart she's referring, but every week, we do a new number one dance. I suppose things move pretty quickly in the line dance world. What's number one this week is long forgotten the next until Jean says it's number one again.

The number one song is Burlesque, the Cher song from the Cher and Christina Aguilera movie. Jean was teaching Sherri's version, Sherri from Jones Beach. It also involves spinning, but not fast spinning. It has flicks! We like the flick.

So we learn the dance, which is 64 counts, which is a lot, which means people are going to mess up. And we did. But then the music came on and we were all doing pretty well. Then we get to the back wall and S and I just stop, confused. Then we turn and see that the entire class has stopped. Jean's walking over to the stereo to stop the music and one of the Clique says, Those two stopped and when those two stop you know something's wrong.

Those two of course meant me and S. So we've gone from "the girls" to "those two." Fantastic.

Jean explained that when we get to the back wall, we start from the beginning, so we don't do all the counts on the second wall the first time around. We were supposed to simply know this. Duh!

All those arm movements? We don't do those. We so should.

Jean then wanted to teach us Chachanella. We did it last session but haven't done it yet and I was hoping she'd forgotten about it, but she was deadset on doing it. I sat out the instruction part and drank some water instead to ward off any kind of dizzy spell. Eddie had given me strict instructions to "stop and come home" if I got dizzy. Right. His idea is a lot different from my "breathe through it and drink water" plan. Thankfully, no dizzy spells during class despite the spinning.

Anyway, we all did Chachanella and even those learning it for the first time were pretty good at it. It ends with a quick toe point to one side and a toe point to the other, which Jean doesn't tell you when she teaches until she shows you with the music on. S had forgotten about it but I did it and told her, It's not an option! Because that's what Jean told us last session when no one was doing it. Because no one knew we were supposed to in the first place.

We repeated a lot of dances we already know. We did S's favorite dance this session, Black Magic Woman. She said she doesn't like it because there are no words. Then when the guy started singing, I pointed out, see? words! There aren't many and the ones that are there--well, if you know the song, you know they aren't the greatest lyrics.

We did Brazil! S and I know it. The Clique knows it. No one else knew it. Jean taught it pretty quickly and then turned the music on right away and we danced it and when it was over, everyone looked kind of miserable because the dance is so fast. This is how we make friends.

Then Jean put on the music for Dizzy and I was like, I cannot dance that dance. Then she stopped and asked what song everyone wanted. S said Toes because she always asks for Toes by pointing at her toes but the Clique requested Hello Dolly so we all did Hello Dolly. I did so half-heartedly because I'm kind of sick of Hello Dolly.

With about eight minutes left of class, Jean decided to teach one more dance. The other Irish dance! The one she promised to do two weeks ago! It involves clapping. I do not like clapping. S was like, why aren't you clapping? I was like, I want to get my feet first. Which is true. I was concentrating on the steps first and that took up most of my focus. I could remember each eight count, but I couldn't remember them consecutively, which is a problem when you're dancing to an entire song and not one 8-count at a time. I can clap next time if we do it again, and there's only a slim chance of that happening. I like the other Irish dance better, but this was fun.

Irish music makes me happy.

On American Idol, the blonde sang Any Man Of Mine by Shania Twain and I was like, Hey there's a line dance to that! I looked it up and sure enough, it's one that I loved doing at the beach so I'm hoping that somehow Jean decides to teach that one, too, now that she's on a roll with teaching lots of new dances all at once.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Not A Fun Job

Jon Stewart once stated that the worst job you could have is being a eunuch in Fucktown. This job is a close second:

If you can't tell, that's a guy dressed up as the Statue Of Liberty. He's standing on the side of the road in Staten Island holding up a sign for Liberty Tax Specialists. In the snow.

Monday, March 7, 2011

Where Was George Clooney?

Wednesday morning, I was dizzy when I woke up. I was dizzy in the shower. I was feeling numb all over. My head hurt. I hadn't slept because I kept moving around my extremities, trying to tell if I could indeed move them.

Basically, I thought I was having a stroke.

After my shower, I climbed into bed with Eddie and whispered, I think we should go to the Emergency Room.

Eddie jumped out of bed. It was the fastest I've ever seen him get out of bed. His slight panic was not helping, but his speed was. I gathered my ID and insurance card. I got dressed as he got dressed. We did everything that you're not supposed to do if you think you're having a stroke. You're supposed to call an ambulance and rush to the hospital.

At the ER, the reception guy got me a wheelchair so I wouldn't have to walk and fall over. The nurse took my blood pressure and temperature. Then I filled out paperwork. This all took about forty-five minutes. No one seemed worried that I was stroking, so I started to worry less. I was aghast at how much crap you need to do before you see a doctor. Next time, no matter what it is, I'm calling an ambulance so I can do paperwork second and perhaps see a friggin doctor first because it's a friggin emergency.

I got stuck in the bathroom doorway when the wheelchair wouldn't go over the saddle. A nurse asked if I could walk. I told her I was dizzy. She said she'd guide me to the bed and I didn't need the chair. That made me feel better.

The ER was quiet, almost empty. A Physician Assistant came over and talked to me and used her stethoscope and did the push/pull and follow-the-pen tests, all of which came out fine. I asked if I was having a stroke. She said she didn't think that was going on at all.

I got a cat scan. The machine yelled at me. It said, DON'T MOVE! I wasn't moving but that made me not move and hold my breath. Since this was a head scan, I didn't need to hold my breath, but it was the only movement I was doing, and since it yelled at me, I stopped.

Then it yelled, RELAX! That was not very relaxing.

A nurse took a fair amount of blood and gave me anti-vert. They said that it would stop the dizziness, but I know the truth. Anti-vert simply makes you so tired that you have to fall asleep so that you don't realize if you're dizzy.

Eddie entertained me by listing all the times he had to visit an ER and why. Then he told me about his experience with cat scan machines. Then he took pictures of me. I make blue-green hospital gowns sexy, huh?

The cat scan came back fine. The PA told me it was a case of vertigo.

So really, everything that was happening to me from the dizziness to the feeling like I'm numb to the not feeling right to the raised pulse and the wondering if my extremeties were moving was mostly from worrying. If I had to guess: 10% vertigo, 90% panic.

They sent me home with a prescription for anti-vert which I didn't fill because it doesn't work and a piece of paper that explains what I had: Dizziness. It has helpful advice on it such as if you feel dizzy, lie down so you don't fall. A thousand dollar emergency room visit for them to tell me to lie down if I'm dizzy.

The bright side: I didn't have to go to work that day. Eddie didn't go to work, either. He took care of me instead. And took pictures of my ailments. Ewww.

Dizzy Dance

I would love to give you a narrative of what we learned in dance class, but my mind continues to return to only one moment that really has nothing to do with dancing and has everything to do with why S and I are friends.

We walked in and, amazingly, class had not started yet. It was about to. We went to our corner and waited for Jean to start. The class was on the fuller side again with the two older "couples" present. I don't know if the man and woman who do the waltz are an actual couple or a dance partnership. I don't know if the other couple actually likes one another since they never stand near each other or talk to each other and the only way we know they are together is that they come in and leave together.

The woman of this latter couple was standing in the front row as she always does, bewteen the woman who sits out almost all of the dances after the first eight count of each and two women from the clique. She was directly in our view with two rows of dancers separating us. S and I were standing in silence, staring ahead while we waited.

I said quietly, What the hell is going on there?

S responded, You are so in my head right now because I was thinking the same thing.

Across this woman's midsection was an elastic, ruched, denim thing about five inches wide. We weren't sure what it was or how the choice to put it on occured. To make it better, there was a string hanging off of it that moved when she danced. During our first turn, we realized, hey it's a belt! It was like someone had really long jeans and chopped off the bottoms and then fashioned a belt out of the scraps using elastic and a buckle that they also covered in scraps of denim.

The woman was also wearing sneakers that looked like they were airbrushed. Kind of like she was planning to be on an episode of Fresh Prince of Bel-Air.

Anyway, the denim belt was a distraction all through class, but we didn't let it distract us too much from learning Walking In The Rain. I think it's Michael Buble or a sound-alike Buble and whoever wrote the song smushed two Christmas carols together and replaced the word "christmas" with the words "winter" and "holiday." The dance is 64 counts, which means it's long. Which means people are going to screw up a lot.

The dance includes a tag. We love the tag! It also includes another extra few steps "all the way towards the end" as Jean instructed, which translates to "in the beginning" when we actually put the music on and did the dance.

See that turn-point-turn-point move? That's a Monterey turn. It's the kind of turn that is difficult to make gracefully. That's all I'll say about that.

Towards the end of the class, I felt really dizzy and then I simply didn't feel right. I went to get water and S was like, where you going? I said I thought my vertigo might be coming back--I had it a few years ago--but I wasn't sure. We danced a final dance with me trying to figure out if I was still dizzy or if I was tired.

Thursday, March 3, 2011


I was looking for a book in Borders when I came across this:

Let me just ask, Who does that?

I mean, first off, who buys a hot dog in a foil bag in the mall? If you're at a concert or a sporting event or a theme park, then maybe that's acceptable. But if you have access to a food court that has places to sit, then no, you should not opt for the hot-dog-in-a-foil-bag meal.

Secondly, what comes over you to make you put your hot dog in a foil bag on a book shelf and leave it there? Did you suddenly realize, Hey I'm about to eat a hot dog in a foil bag when I have better options? Did you decide you were not hungry? Did you feel pangs of conscience and decide that others less fortunate than you might develop a desire for a hot dog in a foil bag while in the Bs of the Young Adult section at the Borders in the mall? I really want to see security footage of what exactly happened here.

I'm aware that the footage may also contain a scene of me taking a picture of a hot dog in a foil bag left on a bookshelf, which might lead some to ask, why exactly would someone take a picture of a hot dog in a foil bag on a bookshelf at the Borders? That has an easier answer. If I told someone I found a hot dog in a foil bag on top of some books in a store, not everyone would believe me because, for some reason, a lot of people have more faith in their fellow human beings than they should. I sometimes fall into that trap as well and then quickly snap out of it in moments of finding processed phallic shaped meat where it's not supposed to be.