Thursday, March 16, 2006


I know you've missed her.

She and dad were planning on coming to visit again last week, but lo and behold, my dear, sweet, wonderful, loving sister took one for the team and decided to have 30 gallstones (just like an 86 year old grandma, not that we're mentioning that to her) right around the time the Glennie was planning on starting the big journey to the southwest. I salute you, T-box. You will be rewarded greatly for your service when you visit in April.

I also happened to mention to Glennie that there was an unusual amount of dust this year, due to the lack of rain. She then felt compelled to confess she had a 'cold in her side', and might suffer greatly from too much dust. Sadly, their trip was cancelled.

That's all well and good, you say, but what excuse will I use next year? Because, as you know, she's started planning that.

Aha, I reply. I have already begun MY plan, thanks to George W. Bush and the U.S. Department of HEALTH and Human Services.

Here is email number 1 to her, setting up the plan:

So Ma, are you ready for the Bird Flu? I wanted to make sure you have lots of cans of tuna under your bed, like the government is suggesting. Don't forget your can opener, or you're sunk.

Here's an article on it. Click on the link below to read it, and be sure to tell my dear siblings to start collecting tuna and vegetables under their beds.

There's no worry now yet, mom, so don't panic. But 6 or 9 months from now could be the beginning of the pandemic.


P.S. Wheezyboy wanted me to tell you he found a dead bird in the pool yesterday, but he got it out and threw it over the fence into the school soccer field. Isn't he such a good boy? I just hate touching those dead birds.

Monday, March 13, 2006

Snow day

It's rare when Phoenix has a snow day.
It didn't actually snow in the city. If you wanted to physically touch the snow, you had to elevate yourself about 1000 feet or so.

But if you were good with just looking at it's delicate, frosted cinnamon roll appearance on Superstition Mountain, all you had to do was step out into the driveway.

Here's a shot from my driveway yesterday.

On the ground temps were in the mid-50s for the highs yesterday, and even colder the day before. But at our elevation it rained -- though I am not complaining. We managed to go 143 days without measureable rain, I believe. Rain, good. I heard we got over an inch.

Thursday, March 09, 2006

Customer Service

When's the last time you've been pleasantly surprised by the service you've received from an online shop (or a store in your own neighborhood, for that matter)?

A few days ago, through I ordered a few items from this place called Third Choice. It's basically a small skater's shop run by a team of skateboarders. Yesterday I got an email from them saying one of the t-shirts I ordered was out of stock in the size I requested. They apologized and gave me three options: Get the tee in a different size, choose a different style tee, or get a refund.

Further along in the email, they said that for my inconvenience, they'd like to give me one of their new wallets. What color did I want, they asked. My jaw dropped. First -- I have never been offered anything by any company because I've been inconvenienced due to an out-of-stock item. The Third Choice wallets sell for $10, and my kid will be ga-ga over it. And second -- this email -- they asked me a question. Did that mean they wanted me to actually respond to a generic, invoice-type email?

I read the email again, and sure enough, they needed answers to two questions, so I replied.
Not ten minutes later, a response from them was again in my box, confirming the refund and that they'd be sending the black wallet.

I'm still sitting here, all tickled over it. There are too many folks out there who stereotype skateboarders as troublemakers. This company, Third Choice, is out to prove that stereotype wrong, I think. And they blow every other online store away with their service.

Not to mention their clothes are reasonably priced and really cool (dood, your kid needs their beanie), as are their board designs. I bought one of the tee's for myself 'cause it's so cool, though I am sure my kid will steal it. I may even start skating again...I used to do it, back before it was cool...

Tuesday, March 07, 2006

Hey, Jolene is cool.

This was fun. I have been to 30 states. How about you? Click on the link below to find out. (yeah, I guess I'm a little bored today.)

On edit: Okay, I took the silly map down so T-box can find her link to the Survivor and TAR blogs. Sorry to those who use IE -- I didn't realize it was messing it up that badly. Carry on.

Wednesday, March 01, 2006

Four Things Meme

Chris tagged me.

Four jobs I've had:

1. bindery - rolling labels at a printing company
2. blueberry picker
3. Realtor
4. Telemarketer (for 1 day)

Four movies I can watch over and over:

1. Groundhog Day
2. Waiting For Godot
3. Waiting For Guffman
4. Groundhog Day

Four places I've lived:

1. Estelle Drive
2. Union (aka Onion) Street
3. The Bayberry Hotel
4. Madison Street (twice)

Four TV shows I love:

1. Washington Journal
2. That infomercial with the plastic containers and lids that all fit in the spinning thingy
3. International Spelling Bee Championship
4. Harvey Birdman: Defending the Wiggles

Four highly-touted TV shows I detest:

1. Gunsmoke
2. Fox News Live - any show, any time
3. BoohBah
4. The People's Court

Four books I'd recommend to anyone, anytime:

1. 1984
2. Literary Mama
3. The Giver
4. The Handmaid's Tale

Four places I've vacationed (hey cool, I can use the same ones supes used):

1. Mesa, Arizona
2. Seattle, Wa
3. Orlando, FL
4. Washington, DC

Four of my favorite dishes:

1. dinner plate
2. saucer
3. those cute little appetizer plates with pictures of cheeses or cities on them
4. salad bowl

Four sites I visit (almost) daily:

2. Democratic Underground
3. Mr. Farrell, 6th grade teacher's homework page
4. all of your blogs

Four places I would rather be right now:

1. umm...
2. ahh...
3. hmmm.
4. maybe in the cave, or the bayberry hotel. Other than that, I'm perfectly content here in my green chair.

I tag all of you who haven't done this yet.

Fine then.

Your silence is deafening. Let's change the subject. Hmmm...Hey, did you hear about Mississippi and their new abortion ban? Oh, it's getting fun now.

No? How about we talk about how cute 'chicken little' Kevin is on American Idol. Isn't he such a little darling? He could be my kid. I think that's why I like him. He looks like he'd be a nice kid to have around.

Hey, who's quitting smoking next? Because it's not so bad after the first week.

And have you been to Superman's blog lately?