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testing times

I'm testing this new blog system. If you ever see this entry, it means everything works!

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a new look, a new system

Remember when the blog was broken, a while ago? Well, in that week or so while we didn't post I started working on a new blog machine. I wanted to get rid of the Moveable Type (which what we've been using since this was Squibix Goes West) for two reasons: one, cause when something goes wrong with it I don't have any idea how to make it better, and two, because it was so irritating to change anything about the appearance of the Moveable Type version. Even before the blog broke I wanted to change to this new look, but I couldn't face dealing with the MT templates.

So even though MT magically fixed itself, mostly, I went ahead and created the squibix blogging system (SBS), of which this is version 0.000001 alpha. No templates, just beautifully standard squibix design xhtml markup. Tweaks will no doubt have to be made, but so far everything seems to be working. I hope you like the new look!

Oh yeah, and I should mention the extra-special bonus feature of the new machine: comments are back! We better see some commenting, people.

A few more details about the changes: most obviously, you'll note that we've instituted a more obvious way to distinguish between Leah's posts and those authored by myself. You might be wondering how anyone would ever confuse the two, given the wide disparity in subject matter and tone they generally exhibit, but it never hurts to be extra careful. Plus, this way you can easily skip posts written by whichever one of us you can't stand! If you didn't figure it out on your own, my posts are grayish with the flower, and Leah's are pinkish with the star. That, and they have our names written in big letters up at the top.

Also, the 'Read more' section is fancied up a bit (at least if your javascript is working) so you can read all the front page posts on the front page, if you'd like.

Finally, we've gone through and removed all instances of our last name from these pages, in the interest of preserving our privacy from harassing fans and also prospective employers. So if you see 'A-------d' anywhere in here, you can fill in the missing letters either from your existing knowledge or from your imagination. I always wanted to be an Azerglood!

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Rascal regression

Rascal is a much better puppy these days. He doesn't demand constant attention, and we leave him home alone with nary a thought for the safety of the furniture. Yesterday, though, was something of a step back for the little guy: he destroyed my practice mute and one of Leah's high heels, and did serious damage to a pillow. In his defence, he has issues with the mute since it's generally in my trumpet and producing sounds which tend to drive him into a confused frenzy, and the shoes were ones that he had never seen before (we leave our regular shoes out all the time, and he leaves them alone). I don't know what his excuse for the pillow was, though.

Yesterday was a tough day in other ways too. Besides finishing up the new blog machine (not particularly tough), I also got bit by a tick and smashed my fingers in the window. Both of those two things caused me a fair amount of pain; in fact, they continue to cause me pain this morning! That's reasonable for the window injury (the top window dropped down and trapped my fingers between it and the bottom pane; in between screaming I wondered if I was going to have to dial 911 on my cell phone with my tongue, to get the firefighters to cut me out), but who knew tick bites were so painful?! I wonder if dogs feel the same way.

pre-wash cycle

Since we never feed poor Rascal, except for his breakfast and supper and then also scraps from whatever we're eating, he's always hungry. This is often annoying, such as when he begs at the table or when he eats unmentionable objects off the street and subsequently throws them up, but it does have its uses. Most obvious is the help it is in training the little guy, willing as he is do almost anything for a single piece of his dog food, but we shouldn't overlook the aid he provides in getting our dishes sparkling clean. This service isn't limited to licking plates and spoons we put in front of him; his dedication even encompasses spending long hours (1 human hour equals 7 for dogs) in front of the dishwasher, assiduously cleaning everything within reach of his busy tongue. Actually, he doesn't spend hours, but he would if we let him! And so far, he hasn't cut his tongue even once. Good boy!

2nd star on the right and straight on till blogging

First, let me congratulate Dan on the beautiful new blog, which like he said now has the added feature of COMMENTS COMMENTS, EVERYBODY POST COMMENTS!!! More importantly, Dan drew into our logo a cute little Rascally puppy, to complete the chubby pictoral representation of our family unit. (aside: how come i can't write the past tense of to draw without thinking of Nick Lachey's brother? Dancing with the stars, you've ruined me!)

I had the idea of starting out this entry by saying "Didn't i, Leah do such an awesome job of making this new blog?" And then Dan would be like, "Of course I did nothing, you're conceited." And i'd be like, "Conceited? Not me. It's just that i am what i am, and i'm me!" And then this whole scenario would be funny to me and the like three other people in the world who have watched on video Mary Martin's Peter Pan five billion times. Everybody else would be like, wah? That's why i put it in the "more text."

Yeah for first post on new site! I'd better see some comments, biotch!

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Here sick sick sicky

Dan and i have been feeling yucky this week, as a throat tickle turned into a FULL BLOWN HEALTH CATASTROPHY. Last night i laid down exhausted at 11pm, but was unable to shut my eyes for more than two minutes without stuffy-nose wheezing convulsions coughing and gasping for air like events. Note to self: if there is no Niquil in the house and at 11pm you have the idea to run out to CVS, DO IT! It will be better than waiting until 4:45am when you haven't slept all night and you calculate that a dose of life-saving Niquil will make you miss your 12:00 appointment, because 5-6-7-8-9-10-11-ohcrap, i'm gonna be asleep FOREVER!

You may be interested to hear that there are interesting people shopping at the CVS at 5:00 in the morning. A bum tried to use the bathroom, and the shop girl chased him with a vacuum cleaner. Mod-run the-atre!!!

Thankfully, the Theraflu that i bought freed me from having to clean out my sinus cavity with a serated kitchen knife, which was going to be my next course of action. Thank God for yummy drugs that dry up mucus and taste like lemon sugar!

sleeping beauty may have taken nyquil

Having gotten her drugs yesterday morning, Leah didn't have any trouble sleeping last night. She was in bed at 7:00 and asleep by quarter past; and then she didn't get up until after 8:00 in the morning. She did show some signs of alertness over those hours, but I don't believe that her response of 'buh, buh, muh' when I asked her if the puppy was taking up too much room on the bed indicates a high level of congnative functioning. And you know what the first thing she did after she woke up was? Take a nap!

I'm sick too (and a little note: the last thing you want to do when you have a deadly sore throat is lead a kids choir) but given Leah's all-encompassing cold, I am forced to assume the caregiver role. Oh, how we long for the warm days of summer!

Speaking of which, it snowed yesterday, which was a bit of a shocker. Is it allowed to snow after we've had days of eating breakfast outside, lounging in the hammock and even going to the beach? Apparently it is, and all day long too. It's pretty much all melted by now, though. I worried for my newly-planted trees, but a respected gardening authority informs me that snow is considered 'poor-man's fertilizer', and as a poor man myself I am happy to hear that.

On an unrelated note, it occurred to me that in creating this new blog machine the one thing which I overlooked was any sort of RSS feed; and perhaps certain members of our audience were wont to take advantage of that particular technological offering. So I looked at the feed from the old blog and made my attempt at one for this new, with, I believe, some sucess. But I don't know anything about the RSS really, so if you manage to read this and are having trouble with the syndication and whatnot, let me know and I'll fix it some more. And if you can tell me how to fix it some more, so much the better!

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wedded bliss that i must miss

Danny is off to Ithaca to celebrate the wedding of Tom and Nelly. You go, you crazy kids!

I, unfortunately, i am staying home to take a test tomorrow. Because there's no danny in the house to take care of the puppy while i'm away multiple-choicing, i've brought Rascal to my dad's house for the weekend. I'm spending the night in my parent's guestroom in order to be close to Rascaly and also 30 minutes closer to Boston when it counts at 6am. Just to show what a Bad dog he is in front of the one person who is capable of actually judging me to death, Rascal has been super crazy all evening. My father's house was filled with smells and bones and food to steal from other doggies' dishes...

Blah blah blah, okay, i can't do it, i can't talk about anything mundane and funny any longer. If i don't do well on this test tomorrow, i fear i will plunge into a period of even more irritating sadness. Today i found a great great job that i'm perfect for, only to find it filled before i even applied. I really need to get a job soon. Right about now, with everyone else in the world celebrating, my parent's guest room looks just about like rock bottom.

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A long story of my loooong day with Craig

I'm sure Dan will write a delighting and delightful account of his weekend in Ithaca. My weekend, on the other hand, blew. Thank God its over! Oh wait, here comes Sunday. Cursed holy day of rest!

Friday night I took Rascal to my dads house and crashed in the guest room. Literally crashed. I was so tired from being sick and running all over the world for job interviews that I was ready to konk out and ride the shuffy express all the way to sleepyland. Unfortunately, Rascal was not on board that train. The excited pup was JUST LIKE OMG SOOOOO EXCITED TO BE HERE! running up the stairs and down the stairs and up the stairs and down the stairs... When we turned out the light for sleeping, this did little to deter the pup from attempting to engage the other dogs in play, albeit in the face of complete darkness and their complete lack of interest. Despite my attempts to calm him down, Rascal jumped on the bed and off the bed and on the bed and off the bed... I achieved only Id say about two hours of sleep the whole night, and in those precious moments, I dreamed about getting lost on my way to the Boston.

Well who says dreams never come true! Bright and early at 6am I was up, showered, and on my way to the test of the century. Those of you who have been reading this blog frequently know that I was taking my Saturday career test alongside my professor, Craig, or Craigypoo for those who hold the belief that I am having an affair with him. If I could but show my dear readership a picture of this professor, I believe that everyone would be 100% clear on the integrity of my reputation. To do so, however, would be to poke more fun at this poor man, who has been nothing but a saint to me, who wanted nothing more than to help me prepare for a test, believe in me, and maybe buy me a coffee at seven in the morning. You people.

So Craigypoo called me on my cell at 7:15
"Where are you?" said poo.
"I'm lost," said piglet.
Youre going too far south, turn around.
Oh Craigypoo, where would I be without you? The South End?

By the way, I had gotten off correctly at the Back Bay, but if I knew the Back Bay like the back of my hand I wouldn't have gotten so bare-assed backwards.

Continuing with our story, Back at the Back Bay Conference Center, Craig and I prepared for the test. Pulling out an oversized bag of trailmix, Craig turned to me and smiled. If you get hungry during the test, I brought nuts! Oh dont you people start!

From 8am until 2pm I multiple choiced, circle filled, essayed, and ate trailmix. Halfway through at our break I called Dan.
Good luck on the rest! Dan said, And Ill tell Tom you say good luck to him too!
He doesnt need luck today, I said. The partyings easy. Its the rest of his life Im anxious about.

During the second half of the test, I actually got so fed up with testing I was about to throw my booklet in the trash and/or fill in C for the remaining thirty questions. No prestigious career is worth filling in so many tiny circles!

Finally it was over, and Craig and I headed to the bar.
I dont think I passed, he said. I think you passed.
Oh Craig, youre a professor and a lawyer. Of course you passed.
But which is it that separates two complete sentences, a colon right? Not a semicolon?
Shit, I said, One of us failed for sure.

As I got in my car in the parking garage, I asked for one more thing. Dear God, I prayed, I know Ive asked for a lot of things from You today. Ive asked you to help me on this test, to keep me be calm so I can do my best. Ive asked You to pass or fail me to manifest your perfect plan for my life. But God, I have one more request for you, and this is the biggest one yet. Please, God, help me find my way out of Boston!


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wedding bliss

So as Leah wrote, I was over in Ithaca for my brother's wedding. Over the course of the trip (which was not a long one: I left Friday morning and was back yesterday night) I came up with a number of observations and clevernesses worth describing in blog form. Unfortunately, however, the technology does not yet exist which will allow the user to transfer thoughts directly into a written format, so many of my ideas are doomed to disappear unrecorded. Actually, I suppose that a computer keyboard is designed to allow users to transfer thoughts directly into a written format, but it also requires a degree of user effort which I was not prepared to provide: I was partying, after all! And my brother knows how to throw a good party, especially when my parents are footing the bills.

The only negative in the whole affair, actually, was that I was called upon to make a toast. I knew it was a distinct possibility (especially as my mother had told me "You're going to make a toast, right?" and then subsequently inquired on a number of occasions if I had yet prepared anything) but when the moment came I still hadn't thought of anything, and trusted to inspiration to provide. Stupid inspiration, you let me down! So that wasn't so good. The price of gas these days also takes a bit of the joy out of the long trips by automobile.

It was all well worth it, though; more than worth it. I only wish Leah coulda been there, but luckily Tom and Nelly are having another whole wedding this summer so we're going to get to go to that one together. I can't wait!

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Tit for Tat

"Leah, in this country it's customary to return the ice trays to the freezer after you use them."
"Oops sorry."

...after several minutes...

"Dan, in this country it's accustomed... it's customed... i mean it's custom... oh blahblah. You left the mayonaisse out."

Doing things together!

When i joined the gym again, thanks to a charitable donationfrom Dan's parents, not only did i get a free backpack (yeah! quitters rule!) but i got a month-long guest pass for my dear husband, the last person you'd ever see voluntarily step foot in a gym. Last week, though, pressured by the limited-time free-ness of the offer, Dan aquiessed and went with me. Maybe for the last time. Let's just say i won't be getting him his own membership for Christmas.

First we went on the elyptical trainers, which Dan complained were "like doing nothing!"
"I know honey, that's the point. You work out without realizing it. See? You've burned 10 calories already."
"Ten calories? I'd better go eat something!"
Apparently, Dan's body is too efficient to do exercizes. He scoffed at abs on the ball, because why lie down and sit up again when you could just stay sitting? Dan was more agreeable with the freeweights, but at the beginning of every set he said, "How many of these do we have to do?" and every second set he said, "But we already did this one!" We worked our biceps and triceps and back and shoulders, and by then Dan was just about done with me for the rest of my life. After every exercise i said, "Isn't this fun?" And Dan said, "I can see how you'd think it is."

On the way back from the gym, we decided that exercising together would be more fun for Dan if it involved biking, walking, or some similar constantly changing venue. So today we did the super fun: biking AND eating! In the middle of the day we biked to the center to our favorite restaurant Dabin where we had a gift certificate (again courtesy of Dan's parents, they're really worried i guess!) After a delicious lunch, we walked around to the shops and got some desert at Candy Castle. All in all, it was a very nice date.

The nice thing about being married is you get a person to do fun things with. Some things, like lifting weights, are not fun for everyone. But biking to lunch is always better in twos, and no one can deny the funness of an afternoon ice-cream cone.

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opening days

I haven't written about baseball in these pages this year, but that doesn't mean I haven't been paying attention to it. So far so good! (mostly).

The Sox are back home now, which means the papers are full of talk about what's new at Fenway this year. The big news, we find, is that they've torn down the exclusive .406 Club and replaced it with the EMC Club, which is similarly exclusive but has the additional advantage of being named after a data storage firm. Nothing says baseball like data storage! The big difference between the old club and the new is that they've removed the glass wall that formerly allowed the privileged few to watch the game in climate-controlled splendor; it turns out baseball is less interesting when the sounds of the game have to be piped in via speakers. The hoi-peloi will now have to eat their $32.00 lobster roll (the papers went into considerable depth describing the food available at the park) while fully exposed to the elements. At least they'll be able to wear practical clothes now: the .406 Club had a dress code that forbade jeans or shirts without collars, but somebody finally realized that it's pretty gay to watch baseball in your oxford and slacks, and the dress restrictions are out. Now loutishness has taken over all of sports, except, I suppose, at the golf course.

This wasn't in the paper, but rumor has it the cheapest seats are now $25. I'm still boycotting that horrible old relic.

the best of Good Friday

So everyone always makes the same joke about Good Friday, or else expresses the same sentiments in a non-humerous fashion: why is it called 'Good' Friday? I tell you what, guys, nobody has ever thought of that before! All these years the Christian church had the wrong name for the holiday, and nobody ever caught it! Good thing somebody finally noticed!

No really, there's a good reason it's Good Friday, and that's because without Good Friday there wouldn't be Easter. But you all knew that already.

Our Friday was all good, until we had to go to church. It's really amazing how quick the plants move once it gets warm enough for them to get going: today it seemed like we could watch them growing. The pretty white-flower tree we inherited with the house, especially: it had about twice as many flowers by the afternoon than it did this morning. Four times as many bees, too. In honor of all the growth we worked in the garden a little bit, and got rid of some more grass. The battle continues! Leah was nice enough to come help me; I'm so lucky to have her!

Then later we went to church. All I have to say about that is, somebody at our church needs to realize that lengthening the service does not creat a parallel increase in the intensity of the spiritual experience. Rather the reverse, in fact.

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Good Friday, Bad Churchy

Dan sung in the choir during his aforementioned church service, so sitting out of view from the rector, where he was free to make faces at younger choristers, he was unable to experience the full boredom that was the two hour service last evening. Let me give you a recap: First we knelt in silence for five minutes, then we heard bible for 30 minutes, then we heard a sermon made out of the kind of internet dirge that goes straight into my JUNK MAIL folder.(Too... many... liturgical criticisms...to bear.) Then we "reverenced the cross" for about 60 minutes going on a million. Reverencing involved standing staring at a 9-foot wooden cross as it moved up the isle two feet after every five-minute tenor solo. And Dan wasn't even singing! I have never felt more purposefully irreverent in my life! Well, maybe in high school.

After the service i met Dan in the choir room and he whispered to me, "Let's celebrate Good Friday at home next year."
"Next year in Israel." I said.

Thankfully, tomorrow will be a happy holiday and reverencing will be out the window, on the lawn with the chocolate Easter eggs. Hosanna in the highest!

Woah Nelly!

Today is Nelly's Birthday! Happy Birthday to my new sister in law! I always wanted a sister, preferably a twin sister who looked alike and talked alike and sometimes even walked alike. Unfortunately, the world was not able to handle two Bobsey Leahs. Instead, i have a SISTER. By that, i am referring to the fact that she is Black. Barring the possibility of a short-hand hand-mirror twin, i always wanted a sister who looked good wearing brown and yellow! Okay, haters, now you can call the NAACP.

Happy Easter!

No pretty Easter graphic this year, though; I didn't think of it until the morning, a little too late to do anything about until this moment. Still, text can probably do nearly as good a job:

Happy Easter!

Interestingly enough, I got an email this morning from 'Jesus' with nothing more than 'yo' in the subject line. Sadly, it was not a divine revelation; this Jesus (who is clearly someone other than our Lord and Savior) just wanted to know if I was 'still hearing complaints about it in the bed.'

Leah's not feeling very patriotic

Yesterday was Easter AND Passover dinner. The moral of this story may be: if you are planning on running a 5-mile race on Monday, DON'T eat Easter brunch and Passover dinner on Sunday. Where's my home colonic kit?! I'm running in two hours... and this is going to suck big-time.

In addition to the excess five pounds i put on yesterday, Passover was a bit of a trying evening for me. When we got home i was taking off my earrings, and one of them popped off and fell to the floor. A heard the tap of it hitting wood, but we looked and looked and looked and looked, crawled all over the floor for an hour, moved the dresser, shook out all the clothes and blankets in bouncing vacinity, and it was gone. i don't know how something so expensive could just disappear like that. I looked and looked and looked last night and this morning. If i stare at the patterns on our wood floor anymore i think they will start to talk to me. It was one of the earrings i wore at the wedding. Losing it was anouther testament of how i wreck up everything in my life by being a horrible irresponsible failure.

Patriot's day wrap-up

Other than me completely f-ing up my race (41:23, more than two minutes worse than last year, sliced into a nice fat 8:17 mile) we had a pretty good Patriot's day. After the race we went over to our parent's neck of the woods to watch the annual parade. There were lots of good bands which Dan really liked, and i like to watch the baton-twirlers, especially the chubby ones in sequins. There is a window of a few years when young fat girls will still don sequins and feel special. This is before they realize the world and weight-watchers are out to crush their spirit. During that time there may also be spandex; It's magical to watch! It's also fun taking in the crowd that gathers around the parade route. Patriot's day is a sacred holiday in Massachusetts, and everyone celebrates by letting their kids eat fried dough and dive for candy in the street when it's thrown from floats. Hurah!

As for the botched race, next time i won't make the fatal mistakes of biking six miles to the race first, and also eating non-stop the day before, and generally acting like an all-around fatass. However, there is good news! Since upon coming home i was so sad and demoralized at my own general failure, Dan crawled around on the floor of our bedroom until he found my lost earring! It was hiding in the lint under the radiator. He's the best!

I hate Powerpoint

Leah: "I just want to make a fucking box around this text. How do i make a fucking box?"
Dan, calmly: "Well, first you go to the fucking box menu..."

On the way home from a walk...

Our neighbor yells over her fence that her 2-year-old son want's to say hi to Rascal. As he pets the dog, the mother stops to talk to me.
"How are you guys doing?"
"Good, we're just coming back from a long walk with Rascal."
"Hey, you got a baby growing in that belly?"
"What? Um, No, not yet."
"I keep wondering when it's going to happen."
"Um, well, i'm not planning on any time soon."
"Hey, when you do decide to have a baby, come on over here and I'll talk you out of it."

Excuse me, but what happened to the days of "Oh, i'm sorry i just insinuated that you look like a big fatass." Hello?!
When did it become okay to point out a neighbors protruding gut in the name of gynocological concern? This is the third person this year who has asked me if i'm pregnant. WTF, people? From here on in, i'm swearing off bad posture, loose dresses, and eating.

it begins

By 'it' I'm referring to planting season. As you may remember from last year, I get these spells where I'm addicted to plants. Poppies, coca... oh wait, no, not those kinds of plants. Pretty garden plants, the ones that will turn our lawn into an oasis of beauty in the otherwise grim suburban landscape.

Actually, the landscape in our suburb isn't particularly grim; kind of nice, actually. But for the most part it seems like the supreme focus of most people's beautification efforts is their lawn, which they preserve in stunning greeness by the application of chemicals and tremendous amounts of water, and also by keeping off (the grass). Now I like a pretty lawn as much as the next suburbanite, but I also like playing on it with the puppy. We paid for all this land (in a manner of speaking): it'd be a shame not to walk on it!

What the preceding text can be taken to indicate is, we've given up hope for a showpiece lawn. But with the application of all the delightful examples of the horticulturalist's art available at local garden shops, we can still make our property the envy of neighbors and an example to all. All I need to do now is make some money to support my filthy habbit!

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supermarket sabotage

Usually doing the food shopping is uneventful, with nothing more to worry about than trying to remember what we're out of (lists? pah!). Not today! The first inkling I had that something was different came when I was moving the items I had selected from the cart to the checkout conveyor belt, and doing so in some haste: there was no one in front of me in the line, what joy. I was not moving so quickly, however, that I could escape noticing a bag of what appeared to be pickling cucumbers in my cart. Sure that I hadn't picked out such a thing myself, I gave the bag to the cashier and told her the cucumbers were a mistake. Tragically, I failed to notice that a head of lettuce had also insinuated its way amongst my purchases, and before I knew it I had paid $1.49 for the unwanted greens. And it wasn't just any lettuce, either: it was a head of allegedly red leaf that was so much past its prime I considered throwing it away as soon as I discovered it. I couldn't bring myself to give in that easily, though; if I don't try to eat the produce they made me buy against my will, the terrorists have already won!

Actually, I'm suprised it doesn't happen more often, people dropping things in the wrong carts. Those stores can get pretty crowded!

gaseous rascal

The title of this post does not refer of any propensity towards farting on the part of our puppy Rascal; he certainly does pass gas on occassion, but no more than any other dog. No, with it I mean to suggest that, at least in the bed at night, he expands to fill the space available to him. If he's up against you and you roll over away from him, he's instantly smooshed up against you again, preventing any attempt to roll back the other direction; if you curl up your legs he's into the vacated spot in a flash, and unless you want to kick him you'd better stay curled up the rest of the night. And it's not that he's moving all around: he just fills all these spaces simultaneously. It's especially amazing because he's not a particularly large dog, in the daytime.

Memory lane

On Saturday, Dan and i traveled to my ald olmamater, the pomp of which has never quite helped me get a job, a circumstance i regret. Yet it was not for such nostalgic reasons that we made the trip; a friend of ours who also chose to suffer four years of all-girls incarceration was giving her senior vocal recital, and our entire church community was to be present, if not even God and Jesus themselves.

Since it was such a treck to drive west 100 miles, we decided to leave early and enjoy the sites of North Hampton. North Hampton, or NOHO as the locals call it, is a diversity-friendly rich hippy town marked by the presence of un-fulfilling vegan food and trendy leather boots. It was raining, unfortunately, which meant that the ground was covered with lesbian wriggling out of the cracks in the street. We went into a coffee shop to avoid melting, but the overpowering smell of wet hemp made it difficult to concentrate on my large soy no-sugar chai.

After lunch, we traveled to the college and strolled around the old brick buildings. The new campus center looked beautiful, but who were all these babies running around in their sweat pants? Are THESE college students??? They look like they're twelve years old! And they're having HOW MUCH promiscuous sex??? I'm feeling very old.

The concert was jam-packed with people we knew, which was fun except that there's this one irritating person who goes to our church who doesn't know how to make polite conversation, and instead asks three people standing next to each other: "How are you doing?" "How are you doing?" "How are you doing?" Then she asked me and Dan, "Do you live in a house?" And i was like: "No, we live in a shoebox. Do yooooooooo live in a house?" Apparently the rain, the college, and the homosexuals were making me irritable. A bastion of tolerance, i am not.

After our long day, i came home and sat at our kitchen table to finish up a presentation for grad-school. All in all, it's nice to live in our own house, with our own kitchen, and a puppy, and a yard, and be married. To a man.

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my 1000lb jigsaw puzzle

Despite the rain, I spent some of today outside moving rocks around. We're building this wall slash rock-garden, and I had the great good fortune to be gifted a gigantic load of authentic New England rocks by my neighbor, who had too many. (I don't remember if I wrote about it in these pages, but we've reached a point around here where people are paying for rocks. Our New English farming forebearers are surely spinning in their graves.) Bringing them over, though, we just dumped them willy-nilly, mostly over grass that in the project plans is supposed to stay grass (I've learned from bitter experience that grass doesn't like being under rocks for days and weeks). Also, it's hard to find the right sort of rocks for particular spots when they're all in a big jumble. So I picked up many of them and moved them around. It was much like when you're doing a jigsaw puzzle and you have to lay out all the pieces before you can start, only it took a little more room. It was also a better workout.

Also, when my gloves got wet the color ran on the inside and turned my hands bright bright red. Imagine my surprise! Now I know how a lobster feels, only without the boiling and pain and all.

And we still love Rascal anyway.

A major tragedy was averted this morning, and by a major tragedy i mean me having a complete and total mental breakdown. It will not seem so big to you, but it was big to me. Dan and i were walking down the stairs to take Rascal for a walk, when rounding the halway into the puppy room i spied the tell-tale sign of stuffing trailing along the floor. Then i saw it, pink and limp in the middle of the pile... my Bami.

If you haven't known me for the past 25 years, you have little idea how important my Bami is to me. Bami is a small stuffed lamb who was given me when i was born. I have slept with Bami almost every night since then: Bami came with me to sleepovers, and to college, and to Israel, and to France. When i went to college, i originally feared that there would come a time when i would have to give up sleeping with a stuffed animal. I have long since gotten over the idea that i will ever be that "mature." Fortunately, i managed to marry a man who finds it perfectly natural that i still like to sleep with a stuffed sheep.

I read once (probobly in intro Psyche) that it is a trait of highly intelligent children that they attribute human characteristics to inanimate objects. I don't know what it means when you still treat your doll like a person at 25 years old. Probobly a sign of mental retardation. Anyway, i have often told Dan that if there was a fire in our house and we had to run out with what we could grab, the first thing i would grab would be Bami. Bami is more important to me than my wallet or my check-book or my seven-thousand-dollar necklace. Without Bami i may never be able to sleep again.

So you can imagine my reaction when i saw Bami, torn amidst a pile of stuffing. I did what any sensible adult would do, i collapsed sobbing. Thankfully Dan, with the presence of mind of a true parent, picked up the tufts of stuffing and started to fill up Bami's limp little body. Dan came through when my grief was unbearable. Rascal had torn between Bami's head and neck, and half the face was ripped. Bami's eyes were gone... somewhere in Rascal's belly.

Dan saved the day by kicking Rascal out of the scene and stuffing Bami back up. Puffed up again, Bami didn't look quite so bad. Then i could calm down enough to carefully sew his head back to his neck. The fact that he was still hugable and in one piece soothed me very much, and then there was just the issue of the torn muzzle and missing eyes. Wanting to see his baby happy again, Dan drove me to Joanne fabrics, where we found two new plastic eyes and some fur fabric to patch Bami's face. After only two hours, Bami was as good as new. His face looks a little different now, with a white patch on his pink muzzle, but he's still my Bami and i still love him with the irrationality of an overemotional child.

In the car over to the fabric store, i began to wonder if there really is something wrong with me, if i really am retarded for caring about a stuffed animal this much. After some point, aren't you supposed to leave off the silly sleep aids of your childhood? And choose adult ones like Lunesta?

There is one consolation: If i am totally bat-ass crazy, at least it's not a new thing. I have always been childish and protective of my little Bami, at the same time as i am confident and effective in my business life. So, i guess i see no compelling reason to change. As long as i can remember to put Bami on a high shelf when i wake up, and as long as i have my Danny to take care of me.

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we can rebuild you

Leah is correct, Bami is back and (if you ask me) better than ever! Also we now have enough spare synthetic sheepskin to make an additional lamb or two, and the spare eyes as well. If only we had thought to save the stuffing from the countless other plush toys (fortunately all his own) that Rascal has sent to a grisly demise, we'd be all set. I suppose we also need some sort of pattern; does anyone have any idea what a sheep looks like when it's all flattened out? You may answer in the comments.

We live dangerously in this household

Dan: "For someone who is anal-retentive about many things, you don't seem to mind which way you put the toilet paper on the roll."
Leah: "I guess not. Who cares? It's toilet paper!"
Dan: "But some people feel very strongly for over the top, or comming from the bottom."
Leah: "Do you have a preferance?"
Dan: "No, not really."
Leah: "Then i'll just keep leaving it up to chance."

Poor sad Nick

I saw a bit of Nick Lachey's special "What's left of me" on MTV yesterday. It featured lots of shots of Nick sadly gazing off into the distance, pondering the interviewer's deep questions. Infact, i think they slowed down the tape to achieve maximum pausing potential.

"When I got married I thought, [pause, look longinly away] That was it, you know? I'm in it for life. Now that it's over, [pause, manly tears welling] I don't know if I'll ever find a person to love again."

Oooooooh, poor Nickypoo! Don't worry; a million 20-year-old girls will be happy to console you and make you chicken of the sea.

On a happier note, i got a new shower soap with Shea-butter in it, and everytime Dan sees it he's reminded of a lame joke a made about Nick doing well after his divorce and even endorsing beauty products. I wish something FUNNY i said had such sticking power. But what can you say about Shea-butter, anyway? It's a SHEAme it's not real butter?

No, still queer.

BN and back again

Having had enough of doing a whole lot of time wasting in the pursuit of jobs this morning, i decided to get out of the house for a bit. I headed upstairs to let Dan know, "I'm going out to the mall and then to Barnes and Noble."
"How long are you going to be?" Dan asked, the usual question.
"Not too long," i said.
And then Dan said the three most wonderful words a husband can say, the most beautiful words in the English language, no other words could have made me so happy:
"Can I come?"

Getting Dan to come to the mall with me is like getting two cookies stuffed with ice cream. Which, by the way, is the BEST IDEA EVAR!!! Who came up with that, anyway? I mean, TWO cookies, stuffed with ICECREAM! Brilliant. Anyway, Dan as a mall partner not only makes an stupid outing into a fun DATE, plus he's the only one who gets my jokes about baby prostitutes... other mean girls, YOU know what i'm talking about.

So we hit up the old BM (Burlington Mall) and then crused into BN on the way back. Only problems with Barnes and Noble are that 1)there's a Starbucks there, which means seeeya five bucks, and 2)we sit down to glance at a book, and before you know it it's THREE HOURS LATER!!! Holy time-suck, batman! Before i knew it, Dan was dragging me out by my hair.

Why i got so caught up was that i was reading this new book about Burlesque by Marilyn Manson's wife, and by reading i mean looking at hundreds of nudie pictures. I hadn't even gotten to the bondage section when Dan made me leave. Why don't they have this kind of stuff at the public library?

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coocoonut!

Tomorrow is the 29th of April, a day on which i traditionally receive money and attempt suicide. Tomorrow, however, i have an afternoon appointment at Illusions Hair Design for a cut and foil, and i'm afraid i won't be able to keep up with tradition. Who can swallow all those pills while looking in the mirror at perfectly blond hair?

Anyway, to celebrate the colossal failure that has been my life, Dan's parents are taking us out to dinner this evening. We're going to a Thai restaurant in Belmont, which is problematic for Dan seeing as he's the ONLY PERSON IN AMERICA who doesn't like Thai food. He says he just doesn't like it.. What's not to like? I say. He says he prefers his vegetables all mashed up together, as opposed to retaining their individual tastes. But he'll eat a whole side of broccoli just as well as the next guy, so what's the problem?

I secretly think that sometime long ago Dan had a bad date at a Tai restaurant and he's been taking it out on the world ever since. Still, that shouldn't stop someone from enjoying a whole ethnicity of coconuty flavor! Heck, i went on a first date and a last date with a long-term boyfriend in two Thai restaurants, and boy did we hate each other by the end of the relationship, but we LOVED us some Thai food! ("The sight of your face disgusts me, but can you pass the tofu triangles and peanut dipping sauce?")

There is only one thing more lifegiving in this world than curry, and that's coconut curry. With brown rice. And spring rolls. Diet and self-deprecation starts monday, suckaz!

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Thai food reprised: goooooooood.

To celebrate my very merry unbirthday (please God, say someone else reading this post has seen that movie as much as i did when i was 8, which was like ten-batrillion-times!) we went out to dinner with Dan's parents. Because our reservations were at 6h30, and Dan left for work at 3h30, i had only about two and a half hours to get ready for going out! Since i don't have a job or nothin, i decided to use just about all that time to the purpose of getting ready. So i did what any normal person would do who was getting their hair died the very next day; i put my hair in a billion braids.

A thinking person might have reasoned: Leah, you love braids, and they take a trillion hours. Why don't you braid your hair some time when you DON'T need to take them all out in 12 hours? Like i said, this would be a THINKING person's reasoning. I have always loved the look of braids, how they evoke the carefree spirit of Carribean vacation or that of being systematically repressed. Ahhh, innocence.

And all the time i was braiding my hair, all hour of it, i was thinking, "Gosh, tomorrow is my birthday, and i can keep these braids in my hair ALL DAY... And maybe even longer!" ... they'll just put the foil and hair dye AROUND the braids, and then the blond will come out in patterns! Yes folks, i DID make it to 25 this retarded. Well, three more hours yet, so let's not hedge our bets.

OMG You Guys, i'm totally gonna turn 25! I'm like gonna buy a lottery ticket, and cigarettes, and have sex with someone 16-years-or-older. Woohoo! Consenting adult sex! F-Yeah!

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the hair of the dog

Rascal is shedding his winter coat, apparently. I think that right now I have more of his hairs on me than he has on himself. When Leah was younger her parents had a dog with fur long enough to be spun into yarn, but I don't think we could manage that with Rassie. Maybe we could stuff a bolster with it...

Our own aspiring DJ Ayem

Late last night while we were all in bed...

Can i get a "Mrs. Oleary lit a lantern in the shed" from my peeps at Patriots trail Girl Scouting?

No? Okay then.

Late last night while we were in bed, there came a loud, no, deafening thumping of house music from deep somewhere in Bedford center. I sat up in bed with a start. Was it an alarm downstairs somewhere? Were our cars mysteriously producing sound? No, someone was throwing a PARTY!

Never have i heard such loud, nonstop, irritating music at the percise hour that i wished to fall asleep. There was nothing for it, no sleeping to be had. Who can sleep when you can hear EACH WORD and BACKBEAT of DJ AnnoYing 11pm. "Do you think i should call the police?" I asked Dan. But he said, "No" in a tone that implied he could NEVER be married to That Woman who calls in a noise complaint on the teenagers having a party.

Although i couldn't sleep a wink, i obstinately stayed in bed for the next two hours, hiding under my pillow grumbling under my breath. I could have read a book or watched TV or something, but then the Terrorists would already have won! Dan, it seems, does not have any trouble sleeping during a riot. But i lack a coed college background, and my sensitive ears are closer to my brain. I wasn't able to sleep after 1 in the morning, when the music finally stopped, and relief was sweeter than watching for that movie Waiting to Exhale to be over.

Unfortunately, it seemed the DJ was only taking a quick orgy break, because at 5am we heard the loud cry "GOOOOOD MORNING BEDFORD!!!" eminating from it seemed directly behind my head. Then he played that song from Bring It On, which starts with the words "Prepare for Total Domination" and also the theme from Chariots of Fire. I have never so much wanted to be dead.

While i layed in bed SOBBING, Dan managed to take the puppy out, clean the kitchen, and make banana bread. "I walked to the next street over," he said, "to see if the party was there. But the music just kept getting louder and louder. I think it might have been half-a-mile away!"

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