Category Archives: Texas

Peeping Santas and Other Randomness


A few years ago I gave my parents a set of old-world Santas.  They’re incredibly detailed and beautiful.  One is wearing red and gold robes and holding a wicker basket filled with holly.  The other is wearing ivory and gold robes and holding a carved ivory staff with a crystal atop.  For some reason I cannot fathom, my parents always choose to place these Santas in the hall bath during the Christmas season.  They’re very festive, true.  But I use the hall bath.  And when I get out of the shower, it’s always very unsettling to look over and see the two Santas staring at me.  I get embarrassed.  Terribly.  I know it’s silly, but I can’t help it.  I have taken to turning them the opposite direction when I shower and then moving them back when I’m all dressed.  Peeping Santas are creepy.

In other news, it’s cold today.  I wouldn’t mind the cold so much, except it was absolutely gorgeous yesterday and most of last weekend–sunny, blue skies, in the upper 60s and lower 70s.  I usually enjoy the cold because…sweaters.  And boots.  But it was soooo pretty yesterday…

They’re doing construction in my building right now.  It’s kind of giving me a headache.  I wonder if it would be bad form to wear earplugs at work.  I’m strongly considering going out and buying a pair at lunch.  Because basically, it’s like a jackhammer going off right next door.  It’s LOUD.  And my head is aching.  And it’s only 10:00 a.m.  Blah.  That’s what I say.

I have people coming to visit me in the new year and I’m very excited about that!  First, M is coming for a few days.  He’ll be here super bowl weekend.  It’s the first time I’ve ever looked forward to a football event.  That will be very fun.  And then mom and P&K will be here in March.  Mom wants to go to East TX to visit our Uncle L, which is always fun, ’cause he’s snarky and funny and brilliant.  I’m looking forward to it.

Okay, break’s over and I should return to this thing we call work.  Be good, ya’ll.  Or at least have fun being bad…


Randomness July 8, 2009 Edition


I just got back from the post office to mail (certified mail) my ticket to the municipal court.  Did I mention I got a speeding ticket?  I did.  It was a thrilling way to start last Thursday morning.  I’m requesting probation, which will, provided I don’t get another ticket in the next six months, ensure the ticket is dismissed.  What drives me crazy??  How chipper the officer was.  Like he just didn’t give me a written slap-down, and he’s all “hey, like your new car…hope you have a great day…life is beautiful…”   Yeah, yeah, shut up.  Don’t spread your sunshine over my cloud of grey.  Big happy doofus.  I’m less crabby now.  🙂  Honest.

I am at lunch right now.  I brought my lunch today-tuna noodle salad and crackers.  It’s not the ultimate comfort food (that would be macaroni and cheese), but it’s a definite summer comfort food.  And the monster makes really good tuna noodle salad, too.

We’re having a quiet season at work right now.  I’m having to find stuff to do, which I’m not entirely used to.  It seems lately like it’s been feast or famine where work is concerned.  I prefer the feast as it makes the day go by faster.  And work-mom is taking tomorrow and Friday off, so not only will it be slow, it will be super quiet and lonely.  I’ll miss work-mom!!

Texas is hot right now.  It makes me miss Utah a little bit-not that it doesn’t get hot there-it definitely does.  But it doesn’t get quite so humid there.  For the most part, one hundred degrees in Salt Lake City, Utah feels like one hundred degrees with the heat index, not one hundred and nine degrees.  But Texas summer is the price we pay for Texas winter.  Texas winter is awesome.  Unless you love, love, love snow, in which case you’d probably prefer Utah winter.

I’m rambling.  I’m done rambling…

Checking In…


I’m working my part time shift at the theatre right now.  One of our lovely cleaning crew is here vacuuming, and I swear the vacuum cleaner just made a noise that sounded like she vacuumed up a cat.  It was kind of a “rowrrrrrr” sound like my siamese cat, Lester, used to make.  Very concerning.  And then the wind keeps blowing one of the glass doors open and shut.  It could be very spooky if I were superstitious and bought into the legends about theatres being haunted.  But I am not.  Mostly.  It helps that I’m here in the middle of the day and most profoundly NOT alone.  🙂

The honeysuckle in my backyard is in bloom and it smells so sweet.  I love honeysuckle.  When I was a little kid my grandmother had a huge honeysuckle bush in her backyard and when it was in bloom I used to stand in front of it for hours (literal hours) just smelling it.  I wonder if that causes brain damage.  It could explain a few things.  🙂  I kid.  A little bit.  But honeysuckle is my second favorite flower, next to daisies.  I love daisies.  So simple, yet so ridiculously pretty.  I’d rather have a bunch of daisies than a dozen long-stemmed red roses.

This time of year is wonderful anyway.  It has spawned yards and yards and yards of horrible poetry, but I completely understand the sentiment.  How could I not, when the Texas highways are lined with bluebonnets and Indian paintbrush and buttercups and those black-eyed yellow flowers some people call weeds.  They’re so pretty.  And the iris have been in full bloom and the knock out roses in the backyard are red and pink and huge blossoms.  Then there’s the wisteria, though it’s mostly gone now, replaced by green vines.  Wisteria in full bloom is probably my third favorite flowering plant.  I really do love spring.  The hastas are starting to flower and pretty soon our hydrangea bushes will be absolutely covered in pink and blue flowers.  Not to be a big old sap, but wow!  So pretty.

I’m getting together with Foi after work for a little while.  We’re scanning photographs for Dad and Carol and, depending on how quickly that goes, going to the largest half price book store in Texas.  Mmmm…books.  They just smell good.  The e-book readers are neat but there’s still nothing like holding an actual book in your hand.  And by holding an actual book, I mean one that I want to read, not one that was assigned to me. 

I’m still not sure about the social work degree.  I am taking macro and human behavior this summer, but if I feel the same as I have this semester, I will stop before I’ve gone any further.  I just think the social work masters will help me two-fold.  One, I can head up my department, which, frankly I think I’m qualified to do even without the masters degree, and two, it will be beneficial when writing outreach grants for theatre.  V will be home eventually and she plans on opening a branch of Lime House out here and I do want to be a part of that.  I think monies would come more swiftly with a MSW on staff.  But even considering all that, I will stop if this coming semester is as unhappy-making as the current one has been.

Which…one more week from Monday and I am done with this semester!!!  I just have one paper to finsih writing and one final to take.  I technically should be doing homework instead of driving to a big book store this afternoon, but I’m feeling so free and happy.  Homework will just sully the mood.  🙂  I’ll do it tomorrow.  Procrastination can sometimes be a very good thing.

Well, I’ll end this now.  My theatre shift is almost over and I need to balance out the till, so to speak.  Thanks for checking in with me and I hope YOU are having a great day, too.


A Letter to Texas


Dear Texas–

You know I love you and I know deep down inside you love me back.  I know it when I rehearse outside for my upcoming show (Much Ado About Nothing-Shakespeare in the Parking Lot, free admission, not that I’m the cheap type who would promote a show on my personal blog.  Did I mention free?) and the night is blissful and warm, but not too warm, and the breeze blows gently, artfully mussing my hair.  I know it in the spring when bluebonnets creep along the side of the freeways overpowering my senses with blankets of vibrant color, making the work commute a joy instead of a pain in the ass.  I know it during the thunderstorms when the sky turns that strange blue-gray shade I’ve only ever seen in Texas, and buckets of rain come flying down, rythmically pounding the roof.  I know it late in the summer when I sit on that one cliff at Lake Whitney with my friends, pants legs rolled up, with my feet stuck in the water and we talk and solve every world problem.  I’ve felt it at the beach, hiking along a woodland trail, bike-riding in Friendswood, TX, walking along the River Walk in San Antonio.  Truly, I do feel the love.  So, why?  Why for the love of all that’s holy, why must you rain upon my car right after I wash it?  Every.  Single. Time.  It’s just cold.

So I am humbly requesting that next time I wash my car, you refrain.  Just a week.  At least a week-I don’t think that’s asking too much.  I know you are pondering rain again on Monday, so I will hold off.  But after Monday, could you just help a friend out?  Please.

Sincerely (your devoted fan),



Observations From the Texas State Fair


Every year for the last ten years, I’ve told myself, “self, we are so totally going to the Texas State Fair this year!”  And every year for last ten years, I’ve not made it there for one reason or another.  Most often, it’s because I’m in a show and doing school and/or work and I’m just out of time and Dallas is so far away.  The last excuse is crap because Dallas is about a 20 minute drive-hardly an all day automobile excursion.  But this year, I finally made it despite being busy with a show and with work.  A friend wanted to go to the fair as well, and it just worked out.  Rather than a long detailed description of the day, here are a few moments/observations:

  • Big Tex is just not as big as I remembered.  ‘Course I was four years old at the time and therefore a little bit shorter. 
  • Free stuff is great.  I love getting free stuff at places and the Texas State Fair is no exception.  It doesn’t matter whether or not I’ll use any of the free stuff.  It’s the principle of thing.  If someone is giving something away, you MUST take it!  It is written. 
  • When I was sixteen, I could ride roller coaster after coaster and not be sick.  Now that I’m in my 30s (even though I totally look like I’m still in my mid-20s…what?  I do.  Shut up.), I find that to be slightly less true.  I didn’t upchuck, per-zackly, but I had a slightly drunkish walk after a couple of them.
  • Friend and I stopped for a moment by an art deco fountain and watched, amused, as this adorable little girl played in it.  She’d run in, shake her head around, jump up and down, dance, clap her hands together, and zoom back out with a high-pitched, utterly irrestible giggle of glee.  It was the cutest thing.
  • Mariachi is cooler than I realized it would be.
  • There was an acrobatic/dance troupe from Harlem made up of about seven extraordinarily pretty athletic men.  Apropos of nothing.  I just wanted to mention that we saw seven really, really, preternaturally attractive men.
  • I ate a fried oreo.  It was actually pretty tasty.  Here’s the thing about the state fair of Texas, and Texas in general.  We fry everything.  But participants in the Texas State Fair take it to unusual heights.  This year’s contest winner, chicken-fried bacon, is a line I was not willing to cross.  Think of it.  Double-battered bacon deep fried and served with a side of ranch or honey mustard.  Yeah, it nauseated me too.  But seeing as how I was at the state fair, I felt compelled to eat something that was inappropriately fried.  The bacon was out.  Fried coke just felt so last year.  Fried snickers will NEVER happen, nor will fried twinkies or snowballs.  That left either the oreo or a fried s’mores.  The oreo won out. 
  • Since I’m on the topic of food, the corn dogs and lemonade at the Texas State Fair are ridiculously tasty. 
  • Puppets are a little bit creepy.  We watched a puppet show that was part super-cute and part…creepy is really the only word.  One of the child volunteers was so wigged out, he ran off the stage and into his daddy’s arms.  It’s probably wrong that I found that so amusing.  But honestly, I think every adult there secretly sympathized.  It was…creepy.
  • Celtic Rock is cool.  We saw the Killdaire’s.  They were killer.  I went there.
  • If you are ever at the Texas State Fair and decide to go on the ferris wheel, be forewarned-they require at least four to six people in each lift.  If you’re super-lucky, you’re already a party of four or six.  If you’re lucky, the other group with you is cool and you will make some new acquaintences and potentially, some new friends.  If you are me, you will be stuck with two drunks enthusiastically sucking face the entire ride.
  • I won a really cute growly lion.  Okay, he doesn’t growl, actually, unless I’m holding him up and making growl noises for him.  Noises, which incidentally, aren’t very convincing in my low, super-sweet southern accented voice.  But he’s still terribly cute and happy-making.
  • Skeeball is fun.  Even when I lose, it’s still fun.

Overall, it was a really great day.  I was super-enthused to arrive at the fair and equally enthused to leave it.   Every part of me ached, so when I got home, I slipped into our jacuzzi tub and stayed there for a good 45 minutes before showering and going to sleep.  Is it wrong that that alone was one of the day’s highlights?


Seven Random Thoughts


1. York peppermint patties and orange juice are two great tastes that taste really crappy together.

2. When your wife and your sister-in-law (AKA, me) work really, really, really, really hard on cleaning and organizing your formerly lame kitchen into a wondrous (okay, not quite wondrous until it gets a new floor and a coat of paint) thing of beauty, the proper response is, “I have the best wife and sister-in-law ever!  You guys rock-the kitchen and dining room looks awesome.”  The incorrect response would be, “I thought we throwing that table out…where are the curtains…how much did you throw away…etc,” and generally freaking out because it wasn’t done exactly according to your personal taste.  Guess which response we got?

3. It is a sad, sad thing when the most relaxing time you are able to enjoy while on “vacation” is the half day you are at work.

4. I got a postcard from my friend V, of the Urquhart Castle at Loch Ness.  It is neat.

5. Virgina is for Lovers.  At least, according to the magnet my friend M gave me.  She lives in Virginia.  Is she a lover?  I can’t say.  Good friends keep secrets.

6. James McAvoy is obscenely pretty.  (See Atonement, Becoming Jane, the upcoming film Wanted, etc.)

7. In Texas, during the months of June, July, and August, a “cold front” means that instead of being 100 plus degrees, it’s only 90 plus degrees.  I think that’s lame.  Sometimes I would like to live in a place where the concept of a summer sweater is not a joke.  On the other hand, I love Texas winter.  It all balances out.

This concludes today’s randomness.


Reason #46 I Love Texas


Texas Toy Run

Photo from NBC-5 News (North Texas)

The Texas Toy Run.  Over 90,000 toy-loaded motorcycles leave simultaneously from Dallas and Fort Worth and converge in Arlington to make a whole bunch of children happy on Christmas Day.  I’m telling you, it honestly puts a lump in my throat every year.  It’s just such a sight.  People park on the side of the freeways and on access roads to wave to them as they pass by.  Yesterday, I passed a couple of soldiers standing on a closed access road in uniform saluting the drivers as they passed, and despite the jingoistic-stickiness of it, my eyes welled with tears.  There are helmeted teddy bears strapped to the backs of the biggest, burliest, ass-kickingest guys you’ve ever seen.  Some of them wearing Santa hats and other holiday accoutrements and they just kept going and going and going, like an entire fleet of energizer bunnies on Harley Davidsons.  It’s inspiring and beautiful and wonderful and simply one of my favorite days of the entire holiday season.  I love that they do that.  It always makes me really happy.