Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Bohemian Rhapsody

When was the last time you saw the original Bohemian Rhapsody? I bet it's been a long time. I can't believe that, back in the day, we didn't think of Freddy Mercury as being gay. The name of the band was Queen for heaven's sake. We still had no clue.

So, without further ado, I present QUEEN...

Tuesday, May 30, 2006

My First Beer

My name is Laurie and I don’t like beer. I’ve tried to like beer. Believe me, I’ve tried. There are two reasons I’ve tried to like beer: (1) It’s usually cheap and (2) Sometimes places are only allowed to serve beer and wine and (2)(a) Sometimes I’m not in the mood for wine (2)(a)(1/2) Yeah, that’s right. Sometimes I’m not in the mood for wine.

At the Boy’s Haven Crawfish Festival a few weeks ago, I was faced with reasons (2) and (2)(a). My friend, Melissa, doesn’t have the same problem I have with beer. So, while she was drinking beer, I was drinking lemonade. I was enjoying the bands but Melissa was REALLY enjoying the bands.

Just before John Corbett came on, one of the guys from my office showed up and he wanted to buy us some beer. I told him I didn’t like beer so he bought beer for him and Melissa until he just couldn’t stand it anymore. After about two rounds of me not drinking beer, he came back with a beer for me. To be polite, I took a few sips. A few sips led to a few more sips. Before I knew it, I had drunk the whole beer.

Melissa said, “You drank that whole beer?!” Melissa has known me since we were in grade school and she was not only shocked that I had drank a whole beer, she was also pissed because she was counting on finishing my beer.

I told my friend from the office, “You just bought me my first beer.”

He said, “No way. I’m calling bullshit on that one.”

I said, “No, really, I’ve never drank a whole beer before.”


I don’t know if it was the heat or if it was because a cute guy bought me the beer but I guess you can teach an old dog new drinking tricks.


Monday, May 29, 2006

Guy Goma

This is a video of a guy who arrived at the BBC for a job interview and, because he had the same first name as a guy who was about to be interviewed on camera, he was rushed to the studio. He barely speaks english but faked his way through the interview beautifully.

This is an interview with Mr. Goma on a talk show after the incident...

Sunday, May 28, 2006

You Can Thank Me Later

Last night I did something I haven't done in a long time. I cruised the blogs on Blog Explosion. My apologies for not remembering where I saw this link, but if I'm going to waste my whole Sunday trying to park this damn Peugeot, so are you.

Be warned, if you mess up, you're sent right back to the first challenge.

Saturday, May 27, 2006

No Prison for Vertically Challenged Child Molester

As you have no doubt heard, a judge in Nebraska has given a man convicted of sexually assaulting a thirteen year old girl ten years probation rather than a prison sentence because he is only 5' 1" tall.

The judge felt the man would be too small to survive in prison. Here's a question for you judge. How tall was the child this guy molested? He obviously wasn't concerned about her height, now was he?

New Orleans Aquarium Re-Opens

The Aquarium of the Americas in New Orleans reopened Friday. Very nice.

Timeline of Today's Trip to Nowhere

Last night, I had intentions of packing for my two hour trip to Houston today to meet my mom and dad and sisters at Methodist Hospital after the corrective procedure dad had yesterday. Instead, I fell asleep on the couch and, since I had to pack this morning, I left the house at 10:00 a.m. instead of 9 a.m. as I had planned. (I could have gotten out of bed an hour earlier but, I didn't wanna.)

I didn't make it very far and, thanks to call times recorded on my cell phone, I can give you an accurate timeline of my little journey.

  • 10:01 a.m. Bonnie called and I told her I was leaving the house.
  • 10:16 a.m. Mom called to tell me they were letting dad go home today. However, I had my phone on vibrate and didn't get the call.
  • 10:16 a.m. Terry called to tell me they were letting dad go home today. See above.
  • 10:17 a.m. Terry called to tell me they were letting dad go home today and for me to turn around and go home. Phone still on vibrate.
  • 10:18 a.m. Terry called...yada, yada, yada
  • 10:21 a.m. Bonnie called...stupid vibrating phone!
  • 10:22 a.m. Bonnie called. The stupid phone was sitting on the console beside me but I couldn't see it jumping around?! Idiot!!
  • 10:25 a.m. Bonnie called. At this point, they're getting a little panicky.
  • 10:29 a.m. Bonnie called.
  • 10:36 a.m. Bonnie called.
  • 10:36 a.m. I'm driving along Interstate 10 thinking to myself, "What a nice day for a drive. This is a hell of a lot better than the stupid evacuation when it took an hour to drive three miles. Oh, man, that's a nice Lexus ... FFFFFFUUUCCCCCKKKKKKKKKK!!!!!" (Note: I literally thought, at that exact moment, about the 1 hour = 3 miles. This is important later.)
  • 10:36 a.m. and 1 second Slam on brakes as traffic begins to stop right in front of me. Nearly get rearended by an 18-wheeler. Change three lanes practically all the way to the shoulder to avoid said rearending.
  • 10:36 a.m. and 5 seconds Heartbeat returns to normal.
  • 10:37 a.m. Called Bonnie. They are oddly happy to hear from me.
  • 10:37 a.m. and 10 seconds They tell me their story (dad's being released, turn around and go home) and I tell them my story (I ain't going anywhere fast).
  • 10:50 a.m. Called Bonnie and tell her I haven't moved an inch. I'm stopped at Mile Marker 823 in case they want to send a search party.
  • 11:08 a.m. Called Bonnie and told her I've only moved about three feet and that they will probably be home before me even though they haven't even left Houston, yet.
  • 11:12 a.m. Called Terry to tell her I made it to Mile Marker 822.
  • 11:45 a.m. Finally pass the wreckage at Mile Marker 820 (Note: Traveled 3 miles in 1 hour!). It looks like a pickup truck hit a church van and the church van obviously had caught fire.
  • 11:47 a.m. Find a place to turn around and head back to Beaumont. Call the family and they tell me that dad might spend the night after all depending on whether or not he can keep down some solid food.
  • 11:47 and 10 seconds I tell the family that the traffic heading west on I-10 is now backed up about 10 miles and there's no way I can turn around.
  • 11:47 and 15 seconds Family says absolutely do not try to go on to Houston. Go home, already!

    From KFDM News:

    Wreck Injures 3 Missionaries & Temporarily Closes I-10 West
    Reported by
    Angel San Juan
    May 27, 2006 - 11:35AM

    Three missionaries heading to Mexico this Memorial Day weekend were hurt in a wreck Saturday morning at the 822 mile marker on Interstate 10 West, just west of Winnie. The three were inside a truck that was hauling a church van on lowboy trailer. The truck flipped, and the van which was unoccupied burst into flames. The three missionaries, who authorities believe are from South Carolina, were all injured, one was taken to Christus St. Elizabeth Hospital in Beaumont with serious head injuries. The accident happened at 10:06 a.m., and the westbound lanes of I-10 re-opened at around 11:50 a.m.

Friday, May 26, 2006

All Natural (?!) 7UP

For the last few weeks, I've been seeing the commercials for *natural* 7UP. Evidently, by eliminating a flavoring preservative, 7UP decided they could now state that their product is 100% Natural.

Here are the ingredients: filtered carbonated water, high fructose corn syrup, natural citric acid, natural flavors and natural potassium citrate. I'm certainly not qualified to distinguish between a natural and a borderline natural ingredient. However, a product, by my definition of *natural*, wouldn't contain carbonated water (although I suppose carbon dioxide is, technically, *natural*) or high fructose corn syrup. If I knew what potassium citrate was, I probably wouldn't put that in there either.

Surely 7UP isn't trying to confuse people into thinking *100% Natural* is the same as healthy. Surely, they wouldn't do that.

Would they?

Laurie the Sailor Man

I wonder if I was a seaman of some sort in a past life. Listening to the 1970's channel on XM this afternoon, I find that I'm oddly moved by seafaring songs like Brandy, Ride Captain Ride and Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald.

Watching Deadliest Catch on The Discovery Channel gives me the heebie-jeebies and I was mesmerized by the movie The Perfect Storm. Of course, that might have had more to do with Clooney and Wahlberg than past lives.

Thursday, May 25, 2006

Old Yeller

Last Sunday, I was sitting on the couch at my parents’ house and, as he passed behind me, my dad patted me on the head. When I looked up at him I thought, “He looks yellow.” Then, I thought, “Nah, it’s just your imagination.” We’ve been watching him so closely, that I thought I was probably overreacting. Well, it wasn’t my imagination. When he and mom went outside for a walk Wednesday, she noticed that his eyes, as well as quite a lot of the rest of him, were yellow.

Occasionally, after a gastrectomy, one of the redirected ducts collapses or becomes clogged and needs to be re-opened with a stent. This is what has happened to dad. So, he now has a nice case of jaundice to go along with all of his other woes. He will have a CT scan today and a procedure to install the stent tomorrow. The doctors said that, on occasion, this particular duct collapses during chemotherapy so, me being a glass half full kind of girl (make mine a nice Chianti, please), better to fix it now than later, I suppose.

The moral of the story is: If someone in your family is turning yellow, say something.

(I stole the cartoon from Hoss.)

Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Things I (Re)Learned Today From Classic Rock

As I was reading an article about the Rolling Stones postponing their European concert dates due to Keith Richards' head injuries, I heard the following lyric on the XM classic rock station:

It's better to burn out than fade away.
Neil Young

I think Keith and the boys have taken that one to heart.

The other lyric I heard today which everyone should take to heart:

You see, you can't please everyone, so you've got to please yourself.

Ricky Nelson

New Orleans Rebuilt

(Notice the drain?)
Thanks to my cousin Derek for sending me this one. Looks like a good solution to me.

Tuesday, May 23, 2006

Coca-Cola Blak

I tried a Coca-Cola Blak today. This version of Coca-Cola has half the calories (45) and twice the caffeine (68 mg.) of regular coke. Since I’m always searching for a new way to get a nice afternoon buzz, I gave it a try.

While I was disappointed that it didn’t have more than a hint of a coffee flavor, it did have a very rich caramel taste which blended well with the familiar Coca-Cola flavor. While the caffeine content isn’t as much as you can get in a cup of coffee, it’s a nice refreshing, summery change of pace and I will definitely buy it again.

My personal preference, though, if you want a real kick in the head, is to grab a Monster.

Monday, May 22, 2006

Killer Alligator Caught

One of the alligators responsible for killing a jogger recently has been caught. They found two arms inside the alligator.

The alligator responsible for attacking a snorkeler has also been caught. That just leaves...hundreds...thousands...millions of alligators left to kill the rest of us.

Have a nice summer.

Sunday, May 21, 2006

Nagin Re-Elected (I Guess the Candy Man Can)

Ray Nagin has been re-elected as Mayor of New Orleans.

As we were driving into Houston last week for dad's surgery, there was a huge billboard on Interstate 10 as you enter the city pushing for Nagin's re-election. (I bet Landrieu wishes he would have thought of that.) It was very surreal and, for a minute, I thought I had taken a wrong turn at Albuqueque and had driven the wrong direction down I-10 when we left Beaumont.

Personally, I like to think Nagin got re-elected because of the poster I originally posted here in January '06...

Saturday, May 20, 2006

Evolution of Dance

(don't click on the picture, it doesn't do anything)

This is great! Stu and Kim, Sean and Christian are going to love this one. Katie, show it to The Fam. (Thanks to Jill for forwarding it to me.)

Friday, May 19, 2006

Dad's Home!

Dad's home. The doctors say he's doing great. I hadn't seen him since I left Houston last Sunday night and it's good to see him moving around so well.

He and mom want to thank everyone for the e-mail greetings that were sent to the hospital. They were a real boost.

Stay With Me Now...

I left the office tonight with intentions of being home by 7:00 p.m. See, the deal was, it was this guy's last day so we were going to Rio Rita's for a drink and some nachos. One Grande Suprema margarita became two margaritas which led to a couple of Smirnoff Ice at Hog Wild.

While sitting outside at Hog Wild, who should walk up but a girl I used to work with whose brother is Jimmy Vaughan's manager. Jimmy Vaughan just happened to be playing at Antone's tonight. My friend came back to the patio and told me, "Tell the guy at Antone's you're with Jimmy Vaughan. I left your name at the door." So, I left Hog Wild and went to Antone's. The guy at the door said, "That'll be $5,000 please." I said, "I'm with the band." How cool is that?

Inside Antone's, there was this guy playing, I kid you not, drums, guitar and harmonica all at once. Then, his sister got onstage with her purse which was filled with maracas and they both played and sang and she had on some fabulous shoes which we found out later came from a store in Austin.

Then Jimmy Vaughan sang and who got onstage with him? Lou Ann Barton. Is there anyone cooler than Lou Ann Barton? Let me answer that. No. There is not. So, here it is 1:00 a.m. I have to get up in five hours. I passed my office on my way home and thought it would just be easier to go into work than to go home and go to bed. Too late for that.

Wednesday, May 17, 2006

American Idol - Oh, the pain!

This has been a painful year American Idol-wise. I've never quite gotten over Patrick Hall getting voted off (loved that long neck) way before we even got close to the top 12, not to mention the pain I've endured since Gedeon was voted off.

Then, last week, it was the Chris shocker (oddly reminiscent of the premature departures of Tamyra Gray, Trenyce, LaToya London, Jennifer Hudson and Constantine Maroulis in previous seasons) and now Elliott is gone. Like most American Idol fans, I was hoping for a Chris and Taylor finale. However, I've also had a soft spot for Elliott since the beginning. I was just happy when he made it to the Top 5. When it looked like he might make it to the final I was thrilled. I would have loved to see him go all the way.

It was hard enough to see Elliott lose but, I think Katherine and her family could have shown a little class by containing their excitement that Katherine is in the final. There is a time for celebration and Elliott's goodbye wasn't the time.

Got a Smoke?

I got this e-mail yesterday from my friend who lives in Baton Rouge:

Haha… our printer in the copy room is smoking. We called the tech guy and said, “The printer is smoking” and he said, “regular or menthol?”

To All My Blogger Friends and Commenters...

I haven't read anyone's blogs for a while but I just put you all on Bloglines so it'll be easier to catch up. I confess that I haven't read some of you for quite a while and would forget about your blogs until you left me a comment. This should fix that! Now, if I would just quit falling asleep on the couch...

Monday, May 15, 2006

First Documented Grizzly Polar Bear Hybrid...In The Wild

I love crap like this.

Edited to change title: According to a comment from Jack, grizzlies and polars have been boinking in zoos for a while. This is the first documented hybrid in the wild.


Sunday, May 14, 2006

Progress on Dad

Dad's recuperation is moving right along. The doctors and nurses all say he's progressing well. When we walk him around the hall, he can barely move but he still stops to tell jokes to the nurses and shake hands with other patients taking their walks. Our main goal in life at this point is for dad to pass gas which we never thought we would be wishing for in a million years. Ransonettes are notoriously gassy.

I'm back home now and can't wait to crawl into my own bed. After 5 days in Houston with mom and dad though, I still feel like I should be up there. I really wanted to be there when the oncologist talks to them but I have to get back to work. Mom and dad should be back home this Thursday or Friday.

Dad asked us and the nurses if we ever had weird dreams when we were on the post-op drugs. The nurses said that all the patients up and down the hall want to tell them about their weird dreams. (I repeat that I have never met a nicer bunch of people than ALL of the people who work at Methodist Hospital.)

I asked dad what his weird dream was and he said, "Me and that guy from ER, George Clooney, were shopping for folders." My dreams about George Clooney are much more interesting.

Friday, May 12, 2006

Send Dad an E-Greeting

Dad is doing well. They finally put him in a room and he walked up the hall a little today. I can't check e-mails or read comments on the computers up here because they all block pop-ups. So I hope you're all doing well, too.

You can send dad an e-greeting at and click on E-Greetings. Dad's name is Harold Ransonette, Jr.

Please don't send flowers or stuff like that because it will be harder for mom and dad when it's time to leave.


Thursday, May 11, 2006

Update on Dad

I'm typing on a computer terminal at Methodist Hospital. We got good news although it won't sound like it at first.

When we pulled into the Medical Center area, we got a call from mom saying to come to the hospital right away, rather than going to the hotel first, because they couldn't do surgery. Bad.

When we got to the hospital, she said that the doctor had already been in and said that they probably wouldn't be able to remove the tumor because, after the last CT scan, they found major blood vessels attached to it. Bad.

After a couple of hours, the nurse came out (still before we got there) and told mom the tumor was a lymphoma but that that was good news. Good?

We arrived at the hospital about 15 minutes later. The doctor came in about 30 minutes after we got there and told us that this was "the best possible news." He said a lymphoma isn't treated surgically and is highly curable with chemotherapy and that the chemotherapy can be done in Beaumont.

The doctor said that the recovery from this surgery is a lot less complicated and more straightforward than the Whipple and dad should be in the hospital around 7 days rather than 10 to 12 days. He said dad's gallbladder was "bad and full of stones" so he removed that and put markers around the tumor in case dad needs radiation therapy. Good.

Dad has been talking to us since shortly after surgery and he's asking a million questions and entertaining all the nurses in surgical ICU. He's in good spirits and so are we. We should get a room today.

Tuesday, May 09, 2006

A Note About Dad

Tomorrow is dad's surgery so I will be away from a computer for a while.

Now, go read the post about John Corbett...

A Note About Keith Richards

The latest on Keith brain damage.  How can they tell?

John Corbett and Boy's Haven Crawfish Festival

Sunday, Melissa and I went to the Boy's Haven Crawfish festival to support a worthy cause. That's not exactly true. Sunday, Melissa and I went to the Boy's Haven Crawfish Festival because John Corbett and his band were going to be playing.

We got there about 1:00 p.m. and saw four of our favorite local bands: 9 Station Drive, Jimmy Kaiser Band, Cam Pyle Band and Zona Jones. We had our blanket spread out and our little collapsible table to hold our cold beverages and we enjoyed the bands while waiting for the delicious John Corbett to appear.

We had our blanket over to one side so we could be in front of the second stage with intentions of moving in front of the main stage later. Somehow, we got distracted and held our little ground in front of the side stage until we were rescued by one of the guys from my office who was there with his kids and his sister and her family. They picked up our crap, grabbed a piece of plywood that was keeping the ground from getting too muddy and we all moved right in front of the stage. That's what friends are for.

John Corbett and his band were great. His guitar player has played with the Stray Cats and was a blast to watch. As for John Corbett, he was as adorable and friendly as any character you've ever seen him play. He talked and interacted with the crowd for the whole show and stayed after to visit with everyone and sign stuff. If you have a chance to catch his show, just do it.

I'm having trouble uploading pictures tonight but you can check them out on Flickr either by clicking this link or going over to the box on the sidebar.

Monday, May 08, 2006

I'll Buy That

If advertisers are interested in marketing to a certain segment of the over-50 female population, I would like to recommend my role models above as spokespersons.

Alhough we aren't wealthy by any stretch of the imagination, our children are grown so we do have a little extra money to play with. While we're spending a not insignificant portion of that I-bought-it-because-I-felt-like-it money on booze and tips and wrinkle creams, we might be persuaded to try some of your new-fangled products if you use a little clever marketing aimed at those of us who are listening to more than just the oldies and who can almost work most of our electronic devices without the help of our children.

Not everyone over 50 looks like they're ready for the rocking chair.

Keith Richards has Brain Surgery

Keith Richards had brain surgery recently to relieve pressure caused by a blood clot from a fall he sustained last week while climbing coconut trees with Ron Wood.

I repeat, from a fall he had last week. It took someone a whole week to determine he was acting strange. My guess is that he began wearing an ascot and talking like Sir John Gielgud.

Sunday, May 07, 2006

Congratulations, Katie!

My niece, Katie, made the drill team today for her school where she will be a sophomore next year. As we sat in the stands watching the tryouts, I could hear the girls waiting in the room behind the stands for their turn to do the dance routine. They were all chattering and laughing and, although I couldn't see them, I'm sure there were a few tears as well.

The sound of the girls talking and carrying on brought me back about ten years to the night I helped my sister Terry with her duties as "stage mother" so she could be out front to watch one of Katie's dance recitals rather than having to watch it from backstage.

My main duty as a stage mother was to keep about 20 five year-old girls absolutely quiet backstage until it was their turn to perform. Since I didn't have permission to hang any of the little darlings by their thumbs, I had no luck instilling fear in the mini-monsters. It was one of the longest fifteen minute periods of my life which ended in an adorable dance routine and the return of each brat safely to their mothers with nary a mark on them. (Katie was a perfect angel, by the way.)

Now, here it is, all these years later and all of those little girls are now young ladies...and they still can't shut the hell up. I love you Katie!!

Friday, May 05, 2006

Update on My Dad

We went back to Houston today to schedule my dad's surgery. He has an IPMT of the pancreas (intraductal papillary mucinous tumor of the pancreas) and will have the Whipple (pancreato-duodenectomy with partial gastrectomy) procedure done next week.

The surgery takes an average of six hours and involves the removal of the duodenum, head of the pancreas, gall bladder, a portion of the stomach and all associated lymph glands in that area.

The surgeon says that this type of tumor is not usually malignant but because of the size of dad's tumor, it "has malignant characteristics." If there are malignancies found in the tumor and surrounding lymph glands, chemotherapy would be necessary. However, all of the doctors were optimistic and they expect a full recovery after removal of the tumor.

We are optimistic, as well, and have been overwhelmed by the friendliness and professionalism of everyone we've encountered at St. Luke's Hospital and at Methodist Hospital in Houston. We also want to thank everyone for their prayers and good wishes.

(For those of you who don't know, my dad is a professional clown. That is a picture of him, a/k/a Jingles the Clown, at the top of the post. The picture below is of mom and dad taken in 1958. They celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary in August 2004.)

Thursday, May 04, 2006

Anybody Got a Toothpick?

The son of one of my sister Bonnie's friends recently made his first communion.

In church a few weeks ago, after receiving communion, he returned to his seat next to his father who noticed that the boy kept digging in his teeth.

"What's wrong?" his father asked.

The little boy answered, "I got the body of Christ stuck in my teeth."

Wednesday, May 03, 2006

Applause, Applause!!

As I was walking to the elevators this morning, a Stevie Wonder song was playing over the lobby speakers. Evidently, it was a live version of the song because, as I stepped into the elevator, the song ended and I heard applause over the elevator speakers.

I looked at the other three people who were in the elevator with me, who didn’t look very happy to be going to work on this fine hump day, and said, “They’re applauding us for showing up today.” This seemed to perk everyone up a bit so I kept going. I told them, I would like to hear applause every morning when I come to work. The speakers should shout, “Yes, good for you! You came back…and you were almost on time, too.”

I think they should play the sound of applause in all elevators every morning. There would be hoots and hollers and whistles with a smattering of “Way to go!” and “I knew you’d be back. I just knew it.” In the evenings, the elevator speakers should say, “Great job! See you tomorrow!” and “Get some rest now, you hear? Tomorrow’s another big day.” Perhaps even “I don’t get a hug before you go? Come on, now. Give mama some sugars.”

Keith Richards Again?

I just received the following CNN e-mail alert:

Tsunami warnings issued for Fiji and New Zealand after earthquake measuring a magnitude of about 8.0 shakes southern Pacific Ocean.

Damn, that Keith Richards. What has he done, now?!

Tuesday, May 02, 2006

Synchronicity and Dark Side of the Rainbow

I don't remember exactly when we first heard about it, but if you play Pink Floyd's album Dark Side of the Moon while watching the Wizard of Oz, certain coincidences occur between the album and the movie which will totally freak you out. This link on Wikipedia explains the phenomenon as well as explaining how to achieve the maximum synchronized affect.

Actually, you don't need to go through all that trouble, although it's totally worth it since, as previously mentioned, it will totally freak you out. I've discovered that there is some sort of weird synchronicity in the universe and, if you watch television (any television) while playing music (any music), the random coincidences will...say it together...totally freak you out.

For some reason, it works best with cartoons. I won't tell you when or what I was doing when I figured that one out.

Monday, May 01, 2006


When I was looking for a picture of Keith Richards for my previous post, I found the site of this amazing artist who does the most incredible caricatures I have ever seen.

As a side note, if you ever want to have a sleepless night, do a Google search for Keith Richards and then check out the images tab.