Monday, March 31, 2008

How My Grand-Fabulous-Daughter Ava Spent Her Easter Vacation (click the pics)

"Agh! You're squishing me!"

"Where's that Easter bunny?!"

"Let's see...white, where did I put that froggy?"

"Well, back in my day, we had chairs to sit on."

"Good grief. Are you people done, yet?"

"Go, Speed Racer!"

"Get outta the way, dude!"

"Dad fixed my hair."

"It's all spiky."

"Yeah, I'm cool."

"Look at my teeth!!"

Saturday, March 29, 2008

Cyber Insanity

Occasionally, my mind gets trapped in a vortex of cyber insanity contemplating how much of my life occurs out there in cyperspace. I sit at my keyboard and hit keys and little letters appear on the screen. In e-mails, those letters can be a bridge between family and friends, some of whom are thousands of miles away. The little blips of electricity venture out and, somehow, control where I go, how my money is spent and, occasionally, with whom, where and when I eat.

I've reconnected and stayed connected with people I haven't seen or, in some cases, thought about in years. Without my cyber connectivity, I would never pick up a phone to try to coordinate dinner with the several groups of friends, co-workers and relatives that I try to get all in one place one night a month for dinner or one day a week for lunch so that we can stay connected in a non-cyber way.

I've recently gone 99.9% currency free when it comes to my money matters. Every other week someone hands me a piece of paper (if I could get direct deposit, I wouldn't even have that physical connection to my filthy lucre), I drive it to my bank, they give me another piece of paper, I go home and sit at this machine and type in some of those same little electronic blips that I type into friendly e-mails and, voila, my water keeps pouring and my electricity keeps flowing.

Since they put those little debit card boxes at the window, I don't even touch money at Sonic or Jack in the Box anymore. I buy most of my movies, books and music online, I pay for my gas at the pump and for my groceries in the self-serve line and, sometimes, it all makes me a little cyberly insane if I stop and think about it too much.

Don't even get me started on how the job of a legal secretary has changed over the last twenty years because of e-mail, as well as, easily, the most mind-blowing, work place changing cyber invention of the 20th century: the fax machine.

Electricity. Electromagnetic fields. Gravity. Mind. Vortex. Blown.


Friday, March 28, 2008

Reminder: Stingaree Festival 2008

Stingaree Festival 2008 is just around the corner (4/18, 4/19 and 4/20). Click here for some links and information.

Note to BG: I hear through the Ransonette/Courville Crawfish Boil Grapevine that you are the proud owner of a Crystal Beach cabin. I'll be looking for you.

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Three Sites I Like

I can't remember how I found these. I think Jen told me about the Post Secret site.

Another Speed Bump by Dave Coverly

Once again, posted entirely without permission. Maybe I won't get in trouble if I tell you to subscribe to this cartoon here and buy his book here.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Easter pictures are up

Click here to see 2008 crawfish boil and Easter pictures. (The beautiful azaleas are at my Aunt Hazel's house.)

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Cousins are funny

Sunday after lunch at my aunt's house, we were all sitting around her living room watching The Princess Diaries, mostly because everyone was too lazy to search for the remote. We had just discussed how annoying it is when someone walks into the room at the end of a movie and wants you to tell them what's going on in the movie.

Nevertheless, having never seen the movie, I had to ask, "I know this movie is almost over and we just talked about asking questions at the end of a movie, but if she's a princess is Julie Andrews the queen?"

My 30 year old male cousin, stood up on his way to the kitchen for a fried chicken drumstick snack and said, "Yeah."

Then, as he passed me, in a sad, barely audible voice, he said, "It's so sad that I know that."

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Wednesday Night on Sci-Fi

Tune into the Sci-Fi Channel on Wednesday nights (check your local listings), after American Idol, of course.

I'm such a nerd.

Jason, Josh and Grant

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

My Uncle

My uncle (my dad's youngest brother) who I referenced in the previous post as being so ill that he inspired a possibly supernatural visit from my grandmother passed away this afternoon. I think grandma was really trying to tell me she was here for him. He was in poor health and I'm sure her and grandpa are taking good care of him now.

Grandma, I don't want to be rude, but I've put the top part of that Las Vegas pin in one box and the bottom part in another box. Amateur ghost hunter or not, I'm not ready for you guys to pay me any visits. We'll just chit chat for now, if that's okay with you.

(By the way, I have several funny Uncle Wayne posts on this blog which I'll send you to another time.)

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

More Weirdness: Signs, Signs, Everywhere a Sign

This morning I was reading a chapter in my Anthony Bourdain book entitled "Food and Loathing in Las Vegas." After I finished the chapter, I walked into my office/den/computer room and something was flashing on my desk.

"Odd," I thought.

I walked over to the desk and the Fabulous Las Vegas pin that Steve and Peg bought for me when they were in Las Vegas last year was blinking like crazy. In the six months that I've had the pin, it has never turned itself on.

I turned it off, went about my business, walked back in that room and the pin was on again. This time, I unscrewed the back and went to work.

My grandmother loved Las Vegas and I was fortunate enough to be with her on her last trip there. My uncle, her son, has been in ICU for the past week and is very ill. Is grandma trying to communicate with me or is it just a coincidence? Perhaps, it's just time for me to take a little trip out west.

Maybe, both.

(By the way, Mr. Bourdain highly recommends you try Bouchon at The Venetian and a few other fabulous restaurants at Bellagio and Wynn.)

Monday, March 17, 2008

Our Group Picture from the Ghost Hunting Class

This is the group picture from the Ghost Hunting 101 class that I took with my sister and cousins at the University of Louisiana at Lafayette. The class was so popular they had to add another class. It looks like the second class had all the men in it!

This is the second class...

This is a composite of me, my cousin Susan, my sister Bonnie and my cousin Brady trying to take a group picture in the car before the investigation. I'm holding the camera and I am a retard. The third one is pretty good though.

The class was presented by Louisiana Spirits and I highly recommend it. Ghost hunting is like regular hunting except everything is already dead.

The Grand-Fabulous Ava from a couple weeks ago...

Walking with her new toy...

Hanging out outside...

Crazy crawling and her fake cough...

Sunday, March 16, 2008

It's Not My Fault

I was supposed to be in New Orleans this weekend, but due to circumstances beyond my control, I was unable to leave Beaumont. When I'm feeling sorry for myself, I do one or both of the following: (1) buy stuff; (2) organize stuff.

This weekend, I did both. I reorganized all of my kitchen cabinets (partly because I found where that fucking mouse had set up house, so I threw everything in that cabinet out...Tupperware, Rubbermaid, canned goods, dish towels...everything) and I spent an exorbitant amount of money on cookware, gadgets, utensils, knives, organizer shelves, dish towels, serving platters and canisters.

It's not like I even cook. It's not that I'm a bad cook, it's just that I don't cook. I blame Alton Brown. He makes it all look so damn fun. I have an uncontrollable desire to fry some chicken.

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Eliot Spitzer's Favorite Mistake

This is Ashley Alexandra Dupre a/k/a Ashley Rae Maika DiPietro. She is Eliot Spitzer's hootchie of choice. Here is her MySpace page.

My only thought on the matter is this: If I have to pay $30 (!!!!) to fill up my Toyota ($30...a Toyota!!!!), I think it's only fair that a millionaire, hypocrite politician should have to pay $1,000 an hour for sex.

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Forget the Oil of Olay...

...I want some of what SHE'S smokin'!

(Gilligan's Mary Ann Goes to Pot - Click here for the story.)

Another Idol Prediction

Bottom three: Ramiele, Syesha and David Hernandez

Going home: Syesha

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Souuuuuuuul Train

I used to love to watch Soul Train. They show the old ones now, but I don't remember when or where. I caught it by accident one day at some time on some channel.

Speed Bump by Dave Coverly

Reprinted with no permission whatsoever. Hopefully, by telling you that you must subscribe to a feed of this cartoon and raving about its brilliance will keep me from getting sued.

Sunday, March 09, 2008

Season 7 - My Annual (and always wrong) American Idol Prediction

In the order of elimination:

Amanda Overmyer - Her lack of enthusiasm coupled with her same-old, same-old will continue to annoy people and she'll be voted off this week.

David Hernandez - He's had one great performance in the last three weeks. Three strikes, you're out. He'll be gone in two weeks.

Ramiele Malubay - She'll be gone in three weeks, not for lack of vocal ability. She will completely self-destruct when David Hernandez gets sent home and will eventually live happily ever after with Danny Noriega and Colton Berry in a loft somewhere.

Chikezie - Chikezie will be saved from elimination and will be around one week longer than he should because of Ramiele's elimination due to her nervous breakdown, unless he can pull some kick-ass Luther Vandross out of his hat.

Kristy Lee Cook - Since she's "gone country," Kristy should be able to buy some time. However, she needs to do something about that crazy legs thing she has going on or she'll go before Chikezie.

Syesha Mercado - Syesha doesn't do anything we haven't seen a million times before. She does it well, she's beautiful and has a nice personality, but that's not enough this year. Last year, she would have at least come in second and might have won the whole thing.

Michael Johns - Early on, Michael Johns was my all-time favorite contestant ever. However, I'm growing tired of his Jim Morrison/Michael Hutchence vibe. None of that changes the fact that I still want a hot weekend in Vegas with him.

Jason Castro - A-damn-dorable. He makes me happy. Happy, happy, happy.

Brooke White - I like her much more than I thought I would. Sappy white chicks generally get on my nerves.

David Cook - All of the rock fans are going to be out for Chris Daughtry Premature Elimination revenge and will keep David Cook in for as long as possible. His horrible hair, notwithstanding, he deserves to stay.

Carly Smithson - I base my Carly Smithson #2 prediction more on my hopes for the finale. A Brooke White/David Archuleta finale might put me into a sugar coma. A David Cook/David Archuleta finale might totally blow my mind in an acid flashback sort of way.

David Archuleta - No contest. David Archuleta is your next American Idol. The only thing that might prevent him from winning is if his vocal paralysis kicks in and his mom has to perform for him. Actually, I don't know if that could even stop him.

Friday, March 07, 2008

Cell Phone Contacts Warning

You might have already received this warning in your e-mail, but I think it's worth re-posting here. I don't know if the story is true, but the message is good:

Be careful how you list names on your cell phone. A lady has changed her habit of how she lists her names on her mobile phone after her handbag was stolen. It contained her mobile, credit card, purse, etc.... Minutes later she called her husband from a pay phone to tell him what had happened. He said, "I just received your text asking about our PIN number and I replied a little while ago."

When they rushed to the bank, the bank staff told them all the money was already withdrawn. The pickpocket had used the stolen phone to text "Hubby" in the contact list asking for the PIN number. Within twenty minutes, he had withdrawn all the money from the bank account.

Moral of the lesson: Do not disclose the relationship between you and the people in your contact list. Avoid using names like Home, Honey, Hubby, Dad, Mom, etc.... Importantly, when sensitive info is being asked through texts, CONFIRM by calling back.

Also, when you're being texted by friends or family to meet them somewhere, be sure to call back to confirm that the message came from them. If you don't reach them, be very careful about going places to meet "family and friends" who text you.

Thursday, March 06, 2008

Recent Earthquake Maps

Click here for everything you're afraid to know about current and recent earthquake activity. The maps above are a snapshot of the maps on the site at the time I did this post.

I'm not really shocked at the activity in the western United States, though Alaska seems a little bumpy. I would, however, like to know what the hell is going on in Puerto Rico. Is that normal?

Wednesday, March 05, 2008

Ava Blowing Raspberries

My daughter-in-law called me last night and said she was sending me a video of my grand-fabulous-daughter Ava blowing raspberries on her cousin's leather couch. She said she had been doing this for about five minutes before they grabbed the camera. Silly baby.

Online Etch A Sketch

Monday, March 03, 2008

More Ghostly Stuff

My sister Bonnie and I and our cousins, Susan and Brady (and Brady's friend, James) finished our ghost hunting class last weekend. It was given at the University of Louisiana at Lafayette by Louisiana Spirits and included an investigation of the Egan Hotel in Crowley, Louisiana. These guys give classes and seminars all over Louisiana and I highly recommend them. It was all very casual and a lot of fun, but we also learned a lot.

(Click here for pictures of the investigation.)

In a fit of paranormal enthusiasm, I also signed up for this. I'm such a ghost nerd.

Sunday, March 02, 2008

The Winner Is

Back in December, I did a post (click here) in response to a request for suggestions for a new slogan for Beaumont. A consulting firm was hired and paid somewhere in the neighborhood of $76,000 to come up with a kick ass slogan that would make people want to visit Beaumont.

This is new new slogan they came up with at a cost of approximately $4,000 per letter :

"Rich With Opportunity"

To me, this slogan is telling the world we aren't so great right now, but at some point in the future we might be pretty darn good. Maybe. If we can just do something with that whole "opportunity" thing.

I hate...

driving behind these...

and these...