November 2004 Archives

For some reason (like, um, my own stupidity?) this entry was never posted on Thanksgiving Day.

Can we pretend that it was because of some serious technical difficulties and not just due to my stupidity though?


Oh, fine. Who was I going to fool anyway? The 'technical difficulties' were caused mainly by the fact that I forgot to press 'publish.'

But please keep in mind that for someone like me, who has been known to remotely blow up computers by merely sending out a few e-mails, things could have been far, far worse.

Anyway, so here, especially to speed up your post-Thanksgiving digestion, the Post That Almost Wasn't And If It Wasn't You Would've Been No Worse Off For It I'm Sure.

So please, just for today (and it's not like I ask it of you EVERY day. Just every time I post. So that would be like only every other day), pretend to humour me. Besides, how often is it that someone wishes you a Happy Thanksgiving five days after the fact?


So here goes:

To everyone in the United States: Happy, happy Day of Overindulgence... I mean... Thanksgiving!

This fine day on which you commemorate what must be one of the biggest real estate bargains of all time: The Pilgrims swapping a few bottles of liquor with the Native Americans and getting a miserly bit of land in return. (I mean, really. They could've at LEAST thrown in a bit of Canada as well, but... oh, never mind.)

JUST kidding! Of COURSE I know that the Native Americans received only one bottle of liquor as payment for the country! (But, what the history books so callously omit is that, dammit, it was GOOD liquor!) And then a turkey was caught, plucked (and the feathers used by the Pilgrim women to sew what ended up being very fashion forward headdresses for the Natives), divided and amicably devoured by all around a rock somewhere in Massachussetts, before they proceeded to eat each other.

And voila, Thanksgiving was born.

But luckily this post isn't really about me sharing my very accurate (so accurate it's almost deadly, isn't it?) knowledge of American history.

Alas, no.

But if it IS something historical you're after, fear not, for I'm about to delve into my very own sordid past to explain to you why I don't particularly care for turkey in any form, be it dead, stuffed and covered in gravy, or very much alive and making that alarming sound.

Yeah, I didn't dub it the turkey bastard for nothing.

Ah, but before all of you turkey lovers out there get all defensive, consider this: My first encounter with the Meleagris Gallopavo (Thank you, Google!) species took place during my fragile formative years on my maternal grandparents' farm where my sisters and I were mercilessly stalked and chased by a roaming flock of turkeys (or rafter of turkeys. Specify, Google! Specify!) whenever we dared to leave the confines of the house to play out in the sprawling gardens.

The turkeys would have none of it, though, and in what ended up being a horrifying role reversal, we, the innocent human children, ended up cooped up in the house while the turkey bastards continued to strut around, their wattled necks jiggling with every smug step.

Ghastly birds! Foul fowl! They don't call bad movies "turkeys" for nothing!

In conclusion, I leave you with the following anecdote received from her. She sent this to me after I wrote this.

I want to share it so that if some of you happen to belong to the same CTbT group (Children Terrorised by Turkeys), I can only hope that you find some comfort in this story, if only it is to know that you are not alone in your trauma:

"Another friend of mine told me that his uncle owned a turkey farm. He described, one time when he was about 8, walking across the farm and realizing that a whole herd (flock?) of turkeys was following him. He stopped, and whirled around to look at them.

Because turkeys, like many birds, have their eyes on the sides of their heads, they all stopped and turned their heads to either side. They, of course, were trying to see him better, but to him, it looked like they were pretending that they hadn't been following him and were pretending to not see him. "Nope, no one here was following you, doo-dee-doo.. just out looking for some seed... nothing to see here... just keep walking" Each time he continued walking, they'd follow him again, and the cycle was repeated over & over, making him completely paranoid." - Maggie.

P.S. Once again, I'm wreaking havoc elsewhere.

Updated P.P.S. I see that I'm not the only one who sometimes forgets to press "publish". Shall we start a Bloggers Unable To Blog support group too?

My horrorscope for the day says that I have to refrain from having "in-depth conversations" with anyone today.

"HAHAHAHAHAHAHA! HER! Have In-Depth conversations!" I hear you shrieking.

Don't shriek like that. You'll wrinkle.

And that is as deep as I'm going to venture today.

I Love Mice!

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And by today's subject title I'm NOT referring to the scurrying rodents! Make no mistake, I do harbour strong feelings towards them too, but I assure you, those feelings fall on quite the opposite side of the emotional spectrum as love!

So in this instance, I'm referring to him of course! (But tell Mrs. Mice and Little Bit not to be jealous, because my affection includes all of you.)

And why do I love thee so much to-day, Mr. Mice?

Because I got the movies that you sent me! Yes, readers, that's movieS - plural!

Mice and I were talking the other day (around Halloween, methinks) and although I can't remember exactly what was said, we did at some point chat about the fact that the boy and I... brace yerselves... don't have satellite or even CABLE T.V.!!!!!!!

So Mice did what any civilized person with a heart will do and he promptly took pity on me.

And since he is the King of Horror movies, he decided that I desperately needed some entertainment and education (also known, in some very high-ranking U.S. government circles, as edumefication) and thus he offered to send me any horror movie of my choice.

Now, since I don't know much (okay, anything! I don't know anything) about the genre, I left it up to him. And so, last night I received not one, not even two, but THREE WHOLE (AND CLASSIC) HORROR MOVIES!!!!!

Their terrifying titles are: The Brides of Dracula, Black Christmas (what better way to kick off the season?) and Aaaaaaoooooooooooooowwwwwwww: She-Wolf of London.

THANK YOU, Mice, Mrs. Mice and Little Bit! The boy and I are already shivering in antici......... PATION and can't wait to start watching it.

So readers, stay tuned for some real amateurish reviews from me over the next few weeks.

Thank Houston!

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"Whether the weather be fine,
Or whether the weather be not,
Whether the weather be cold,
Or whether the weather be hot,
We'll weather the weather
Whatever the weather,
Whether we like it or not!" - Author Unknown.

The above is titled... wellwhaddayaknow?... "Weather." (And yes, you're very welcome! I'm always happy to plant things in people's heads that they'll want to mutter repeatedly for the rest of the day much to their own delight and to the great amusement of their co-workers, families and friends.)

But really, it should've been called "Oath of the Television Meteorologist." And they should've replaced a few of the lines with: "We'll force the viewers to like it too, whether they like it or not."

And no, I'm really not a meteorologist hater. REALLY. (And by the way, shouldn't there be a word for people who DO dislike meteorologists? 'Cause, you know they're out there, and I know we're they're out there. Yes, I think so too, thusly I would like to offer the following rather luke warm nominations to the dictionary: Meteoracists, or, in keeping with the variation on the same theme and... okay, simply because I don't have any worse/better ideas: Meteorolocists. Sounds like a really large lump somewhere on a person where it would be most uncomfortable, doesn't it?)

It's just that I suspect that all the meteorologists that I see on local television stations here in Baltimore are a tad possessed. (And, coincidentally, more so when it's full mooooooooon, and I hear them howling through the night (except between the hours of 10 - 11:30 pm) from up there on Television Hill, their ominous figures silhouetted darkly - except for every few seconds when they're briefly illuminated by the red glow of the flashing lights on the transmitter towers - against the bulbous moon.)

For one, their hair, in the typical fashion of the television anchor person, is always so... so... annoyingly in place! It's as if they're completely excempt from the weather related bad hair days (frizz brought on by tropical humidity; limp uncooperation and a dusting of dandruff courtesy of the dry winter air) that seem to befall the rest of us, the non-television-meteorologist population. Even when they're reporting outside of the safe confines of the hair friendly studio, directly from the front, their hairstyles seem to remain unscathed and bizarrely intact.

Like when they're barely hanging onto the side of an airborne building as hurricane strength gale force winds assault them from every angle... the hair remains UNRUFFLED.

Or when they're out in the mid-summer smog, hacking up bits of lung because the air quality is worse in Baltimore than on sulphuric Venus, and they're barely visible on camera through the haze of pollution... except for their hair, which, once again, is SHINING LIKE A BEACON!

But, really, the perpetually perfect hair is NOT the main motivation behind this little outburst of mine. (I did warn you though that I tend to lose my mind ' a bit' when I'm deprived of the sixteen hours of continuous daylight required to keep me sane.)

Oh yes, dear reader, this is not over. There is more!

Cue the infomercial music:

Have you ever listened closely to a rap artist speaking during an interview and thought to yourself: "Oh, what extraordinary linguistic skill! How I wish I could command the English language like that! After all, I've always strived to sound exactly like an individual hailing from the ghetto."

Well, thanks to Snoop Dogg and this site*, now y'all too can sound like dat! (Well, they'll translate any written text from the web, but if you read it out loud enough times, I'm sure you'll sound stylishly ghetto in almost no time at all!)

So, ever wondered what Snoop would sound like if he's asked to recite a Shakespearean sonnet?

No? Well, tough luck, my sibling, fo’ ya’ll iz about ta find out.

Spam with Sole

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NOT that I'm encouraging them or anything, but I simply have to point out how some of my spammers are becoming increasingly creative.

Earlier today the comments section of this blog was graced by the following poetic masterpiece:

Flush Dance

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Netty. Bog. Loo. Privy. Dunny. John...

No, these aren't suggestions for the 2005 Edition of the Book of Baby Names. Of course, specifically pointing out that it's NOT baby names probably won't prevent some people from naming their kid Bog... So, if you are out there: I'm really, REALLY sorry, Bog, that I unwittingly inspired your parents to name you after a slang word for a toilet.

Oh, and I promise not to tell your parents that the guy mistakenly credited for inventing the modern toilet is called by the unfortunate name of Thomas Crapper. (Yes, 'Thomas' is an unfortunate name indeed, isn't it?) But more about that, and him, later.

Anyway, yes indeed, all of those are words used worldwide and through the ages for a place that we are still surprisingly too coy about to call by its real name. Yet, whatever we call it and whether we are rich or poor, and no matter how much we try to shy away from admitting it, the fact remains that we all need one.

You may be wondering (or you may not be... I never know with you lot!) why I'm writing this potty post. (And no, it's not JUST because I've been on a gross post streak since yesterday.)

It's because today, November 19, 2004, is a very, very special day indeed, and hopefully I'll be the first but not the only one to say:

On the late news two nights ago we saw a segment on how American doctors are increasingly turning to nature for a bit of help in curing some of their more stubborn, slow-healing cases.

But when I say 'natural,' I don't mean the usual suspects like medicinal marijuana, or any other Asian or African herbal remedies, acupuncture or even an ecclectic Native American tribesman coming to your house to smoke out your blocked chi and cleanse your aura. (No, I'm not confused any more than I usually am! After all, I DID say that the man was ecclectic!)

No, we are merely talking about good old fashioned - but FDA approved - maggots.

Pull up a chair and grab some munchies, 'cause what I'm about to tell you is in such good taste that it's bound to stir up your appetite!

Fear not the title of this post, dear reader, for it's by NO means an indication that I've crossed over into the delicate world of poetry or any other legitimate form of literature! (Well, I'll admit to drunkenly penning the occasional limerick, but I'm afraid my metre is off-beat and my rhyme sucks like a baby on a teat. See?)

Nor have I decided to seek my fortune by attempting to write bodice-ripper romances.

So rest assured, for you'll still get the same ill-composed, whiny, long-winded posts as the ones you've grown to despise, but come to expect from me.

So why then all this feverish talk of romance when it's not even anywhere near February?

Because - and I warn you: swallow your drinks now, before you read on - a friend has asked me to write MY opinions on that phenomenon which is Internet Romance.

"Why HER, HAHAHAHAHAHAHA?" I barely manage to make out the inevitable question through shrieks of your hysterical laughter.

Under Attack

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Oh, fortheloveofallthatispureinthisworld!

My e-mail account is still possessed.

And I'm afraid conditions are worsening by the second...

Elusive Inbox: 1.

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So you all know that I'm mildly (okay, ha ha ha, WHO ARE WE KIDDING?) techno challenged.

I've been known to release thousands of deadly viruses into the universe by merely sending an innocent e-mail. (That is, when I manage to successfully log on to the computer in the first place.)

But this is something that not even I have encountered ever before.

Fly Revival 101

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Darlings, I'll tell you exactly how the fly revival works, but you need to pay very close attention because it's a highly complex, scientific process:

Happy Un-niversary!

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Yesterday, exactly eight years ago (EIGHT YEARS... allow a moment to let that sink in, please!), I stumbled off an aeroplane*, sans luggage, a la refugee, and into the welcoming (albeit slightly chilly on that November 1996 day) arms of America.

Okay, the part about being sans luggage wasn't exactly my doing (even though, sadly, the part about me looking like a refugee WAS all my doing!). I wish I COULD travel that light, but alas, my purse alone contains everything from a casket to a needle and anything in between WITH PLENTY OF ROOM LEFTOVER for all the how-to books I purchase on a daily weekly monthly basis.

No, the luggage was lost courtesy of several British Scareways baggage handlers at Heathrow (for once losing something wasn't my fault) and thus I ended up spending my first night in the United States very sexily in...

Flies DO Get Dizzy

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Yesterday Emily wrote about her youthful and painful experimentation with bees.

It triggered some fond and happy childhood memories of me as a budding entomologist eagerly conducting my own insecticide experiments.

But in my case, it wasn't with bees. It was a matter of supply and demand, you see, and there was one species in particular that we had no shortage of on our South African bushveld farm:

Did You Know?

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When you attend a buffet dinner theatre production staged and performed by NASA Goddard's theatre ensemble (known very appropriately as MAD - you know, since they're mad scientists and all? Although I was quickly told that their madness is most certainly not the reason for that name, and that MAD is merely an acronym for Music And Drama), you'll come to realise a few things:

1) Some of those rocket scientists could just as easily have swapped their lab coats for feather boas and made it as broadway performers.

2) Some of those rocket scientists, although very clever and enthusiastic, wouldn't make it to stardom unless they complete the astronaut program.

And finally, and most importantly, you'll realise that:

Unleashed Elsewhere

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It must've happened due to the outcome of the election.

But whatever brought it on, the condition is very real and quite grave. Take it as a warning and don't let the same thing befall you.

Ever felt as if every last creative thought has forsaken you?

No, of course YOU haven't. Grrrr.

Anyway, it's official: I've been forsaken, which is why I'm in the market for a few new (but I'd even settle for secondhand) bright ideas.

So I'm in desperate need of a Muse. Preferably one (or more. NOT that I'm greedy or anything) in handsome, masculine form (NOT that I'm shallow or anything).

Granted, I already have a boy, but he isn't always around when inspiration swiftly departs with a one-way ticket elsewhere.

So, any takers? The pay is lousy - okay, non-existent - the hours erratic; the employer's a procrastinating slacker who grossly overuses parentheses and almost every other form of punctuation sensitive individual whose creativity was stifled at a tender age; and even though you'd never say so from looking at said employer, the food pickings are slim (well, unless the boy's home, 'cause yes, along with his other talents, he cooks too); but there is always some coffee brewing and something hopping bee-bopping on the digital turntable.

To all heart-broken Kerry fans, I, your humble servant in blogging, Redsaid the First, and, so far, the only... Unless someone somewhere has, for obscure reasons which are beyond me, taken the time and trouble to copy this blog (it's been known to happen, after all) and its contents, perhaps even translating it into another language.

And if someone did, then all I can say is: "I really hope you took only the best parts to translate."

To which they might say, in their language of course, but the surprise in their voice will be universally understood: "Best parts? There were best parts to take?"

At which time I'd ignore them and simply say: "Why me?" But not in a whiny, oh woe, why hast this befallen me kind of way; more in a genuinely perplexed way, like this: "No really, why me when there are so many greatly eloquent bloggers out there?"

Anyway, where was I? Oh, yes, so me, Redsaid the blah blah blah... oh, there we are: Kerry supporters, I feel that it is my duty to at least try and cheer you up today.

Thusly, let's consider this:

I'm nursing a pet peeve.

This is news worthy because, well, I say it is (WHOAHAHAHAHAHA!), and because, apart from having-to-get-up-early-and-cold-coffee-and-people-who-abuse-animals-and-people-who-are-downright-mean-and-narrow-minded-and-tight-fisted-and-being-forced-to-do-something-I-don't-want-to-do*, I don't have any pet peeves.

None whatsoever.

Except for the following one: I don't like people who say (brace yerselves for this one darlings, for it is serious and NOT intended for the faint-hearted!):

Red, White and Blue II

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Dear United States of America,

Remember me? Red from Redsaid in Baltimore, Maryland?

I last wrote to you on the 4th of July 2004, but since I haven't heard back from you yet, I've decided to try again. This time I have a few more questions and I would be ever so grateful if you could answer them for me.

As an alien within your beoooootiful borders, I've never been able to grasp the use of the electoral college. That being said, I also haven't been able to grasp the meaning of life, the concept of mathematics, physics or the need for the clocks to fall back every autumn. I have to respectfully declare that I don't like the fact that the sun still sets at 6:15 pm one day, and the VERY next day it sets at 5:13 pm. It's disturbing and it makes me crave chocolate even more than I usually do, and I think we both agree that craving too much chocolate isn't good for anybody's sanity, and then eating all the chocolate isn't good for that same body's weight or teeth.

Anyway, pardon my digression. Back to the matters at hand: the election and the electoral college.

Now, I'm pretty clear on why the college was founded all those years ago. I know that long ago, in ancient times before Starbucks was invented, some of your Founding Fathers wanted Congress to choose the President, while some of the other Founding Fathers wanted voters to choose. The history books I've read didn't go into the gory details of how they proceeded to fight over this (why do history books always seem to leave out all the fun parts?). I was just informed that the electoral college was the compromise they reached.

I also understand that during that same historic time, before the final frontier was reached and while some of your state borders were therefore very fluid and seemed almost neverending, that having an electoral college kinda made sense. I also realise that more people lived in one state than another (as they still do today) and so your Founding Fathers wanted the people in the most populated states to have the most say in who would lead all of them.

However, as the saying goes: that was then and this is now. So isn't that practice a bit as archaic as beheadings?

In my humble opinion, democracy should be one woman (or man, if he is sufficiently trained), one vote.

You see - and again, I point this out with the greatest R-E-S-P-E-C-T - it doesn't seem fair to me that one state should count more than another, and that if you happen to live in a non swing vote state, then you are largely ignored by the candidates.

You know that I love you with all of my heart (except for those bits of it which are reserved for my family, the boy, South Africa, dogs, coffee and How-to books), but in the eight years that I've had the pleasure of living within your borders, I've never been able to wrap my mind around this bizarre spin on democracy where the popular vote doesn't determine the outcome of the election.

I really hope you can help me out here by explaining it to me?

Anyway, since I know that tomorrow is a big day for you and your people, I won't take up any more of your time. I just want to say that I hope that everyone who is elligible to cast a vote will do so, because many of us who live here don't have a say, and they should do it on our behalf. And, in the event that they're xenophobic, then they should do it for their own futures. And for you.

Respectfully yours,

P.S. Oh, just wondering if that Green Card I asked you about last time got lost in the mail or something, because I haven't received it yet.

is a South African girl living in South Africa. That doesn't sound very original, we know, but you might find it remotely interesting when you learn that she has only recently returned to South Africa for the first time after a nine year, one month and two week (non-stop!) stint in the United States where she accidentally became an outlawed alien (also known, especially in immigration circles, as an 'illegal immigrant.' We prefer the term 'outlawed alien' ourselves). During her reversed exile from her homeland, she kept herself occupied by winning this website (but only after shamelessly bribing the judges) and thus being unleashed on the web where she slowly, leisurely became the World's Laziest Blogger; by being a nanny and by attending sci-fi conventions in search of other aliens. In the US, she also made her sailing debut, her international acting debut, tried and failed to learn the piano, and never learned to cook. She is hopelessly addicted to coffee, dogs (especially Labrador Retrievers), how-to books (with a particular fondness for her copy of the Time/Life A - Z Medical Encyclopedia), and she tends to grossly overuse parentheses (we're not kidding) during her attempts at writing, which you may - if you really have masochistic tendencies - subject yourself to by reading the words to the right of this column. If you REALLY and truly STILL want to know more, you can read her C.V. here.
Or you can stalk her send her some love via e-mail at: redsaid[AT]gmail[DOT]com

The Wish List (Because yes, she really does need more how-to books. Honestly!)


  • Redsaid Author Profile Page: Terra: YES! Wait... you didn't think that I would be this possessed to post for NO REASON, did ya???... [go]
  • Terra.Shield : OH! ... [go]
  • Marco Author Profile Page: Be a bit like serving drinks at AA?... [go]
  • Marco Author Profile Page: I personally think it is a mindset that has been cultivated over the years, and one, if not stemmed,... [go]
  • Redsaid Author Profile Page: Ms. Crazy Cat Lady Pants!!! Squeeeee! Sooo good to see you! (I thought NO ONE was bothering to read ... [go]
  • Ms. Pants : Kitties don't get enough credit sometimes. (All times, if you ask me, but I'm a Crazy Cat Lady.)... [go]
  • Redsaid Author Profile Page: Hey Tamara! I know, right?? That is a tough act to follow indeed. I adored that dentist. He used to ... [go]
  • Tamara Tipton : Well, I am not sure how any dentist could live up to that standard! LOL! I hope your appointment was... [go]
  • Redsaid Author Profile Page: I'm really really glad that I'm not the only one, Po! Sometimes I drive myself mad with all the what... [go]
  • Po : Those questions run through my heads for various times in my life too, that is for sure!... [go]
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