Tuesday, February 27, 2007

linda called me at work yesterday, just as i was heading out for the day. "the electricity is out," she said. "nothing's coming on."

i had planned to pick up stuff to make spaghetti. maybe a little salad fixings, slice some bread. i can't recall when we last ate at home. sometime last year, i think.

"darn", i said, we'll have to eat out.

so we were forced by pg&e to go out for tapas and a mojito at cesars on piedmont. it's become our restaurant of choice, lately. they have a great grilled chicken dish. yummy. so we ordered another mojito and cursed pg&e. damn you pg&e for making us drink mojitos and eat grilled chicken with roasted onions, and a side-dish of cured ham and baked potatoes. may you rot -- pass the salt please -- in hell pg&e.

so the electricity is back on and tomorrow is a new day. maybe i'll make my hardy lentil soup. it's not bad. kind of tasty, really. and good for you. one bowl stays with you for like a week. i could make that.

or i could just flip the main switch.

Thursday, February 22, 2007

our trip to fresno with the kitties was hard on everyone. little daisy emptied her tiny bladder within five minutes of getting in the car. she was good enough to look for the cat box (which we usually put inside the car), and not finding it, let out a tiny cry and relieved herself in the backseat anyhow. we found a little pool of piddle and sopped it up with kitchen towels; linda's stolen napkins were exhausted wiping the bubbles of drool and froth off minnie's mouth. all this and we'd not even reached the altamont pass.

eventually they got the hang of it (see photo) but maybe we won't take them to Kern this year.

Sunday, February 18, 2007

Pine Flat, a few now...more later

she didn't race, but isn't she pretty...

Saturday, February 17, 2007

Can two ah it's over and it was a bella day

Lil' Ninja and OV

Lily Bella


I took this riding my bike...Ippoc and Marscat


Friday, February 16, 2007

the night before cantua

we were tired from our drive from Berkeley
we drank

we ate

and we watched Lauren's Princess Leia

Thursday, February 15, 2007

three years ago we took BART over to SF to get married. there was a long line winding around City Hall. lots of gays ready to make a day of it. they brought folding chairs, sandwiches, their kids. we all just wanted a marriage license and couldn't believe that we were actually going to get one. but first we had to wait. the two women in line ahead of us had a new baby which one of them had strapped to her chest. she wanted us to see the baby and so she pulled back the harness. i think babies are cool but this was an ugly one. looked like a raspberry all folds and redness. "cute," i said. it's name was Aislin or Addison or Aidin, something gender non-specific, like their haircuts. they told us about their old house in the Western Addition, their new house in Cole Valley. they'd just refinanced. they were thinking about adding on. i thought, please lord, silence them. "how about you two?" the one with the baby asked. i told them we rented, had a landlord from Bombay who wanted to take out our kitchen. "oh?" they said. "to remodel?" no, i told them, he just wants to remove it. they couldn't follow the logic; neither could we. that seemed to quiet them.

everyone got tired of waiting. they had to pee. they needed food and water. the couple with the baby asked if we'd hold their spot while they ran up the road for some food. sure, sure, i said, take your time. the two guys behind them were more tolerable and we chit-chatted for a while. but soon city workers came out and tried to tell us to go home; there were too many people to process that day. nobody moved. more couples came. we inched closer to the entrance of the building. we could hear the crowd on the opposite side cheering the married couples as they exited waving their new marriage license. a sheriff walked up and down the line saying, "please, people just go on home." still no body got up and left. the couple came back with slices of pepperoni pizza in triangular cardboard boxes. they sat down in their folding chairs and ate. "Would you mind holding our spot?" I asked. we walked up Van ness and bought two salads. "Any news?" we asked when we got back in line. "they're not issuing any more licenses today," the one with the baby said. "but we're not leaving." she eyed my salad so i offered her some. she took the one slice of tomato, and both olives.

finally after about four hours, a sheriff came out of the building. "Listen up," he said, "Everyone from this point forward will get inside, everyone else will not." he walked down the line and randomly placed his hand into the line of waiting couples, three couples ahead of where we were standing. the couple with the baby said outloud to the sheriff "Come on! We've been waiting for four hours!" instantly, people started trying to edge forward to go around the sheriff "Hey, hey, hey!" he called out and pointed at the cutters and told them to get out of line. But it was just one sheriff against a horde of marriage starved couples. you could tell he was getting anxious like he was thinking this is so not worth the overtime. "You get back," the sheriff shouted to a couple of women trying to sneak into the line behind him. "This is not right," the couple with the baby said. "We've been here since 10am!" a man behind them leaned in and said, "we've been here since eight."

and then i saw an opening. small enough for a small person like me to take advantage of. i walked forward then eased my body in front of a tall bearded man two spots behind the sherrif. the man moved to his right and gave me some room. i got linda's attention and she stealthily followed. we'd done it. we were in. it wasn't fair but i'd do it again. soon we were walking up the stairs getting closer to the entrance. and just as we were about to go inside the door, the lady with the baby strapped to her chest -- the one who i'd shared my salade with -- said, "they cut in line. I saw them. they cut in line!" she pointed her greasy pepperoni finger at me. so much for sisterhood, i thought. and so we got married.

Friday, February 09, 2007

for $15,000 you can do this to your cat.

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

had another one and one half hour long meeting yesterday. the regular crew was there. Jimmy, soon-to-retire and always delightfully missing the point (or restating the obvious) on all topics was there, as was Chris who refuses to look at Jimmy and winces whenever Jimmy talks off topic was there. my usually jovial boss Kay was there in a big snit. Miracles of miracles Ian who is mostly sick when he is not telecommuting was there. i, of course, was there doing an Oscar worthy performance of someone who cares deeply about the direction of the IST web presence. Cal was there. can't say anything bad about Cal because he's so pure and kind and means well and if you ask him to explain something he will start with the Fall of Mankind. hardworking, quiet, Natalia was there. i like her so i will not say bad things about her. And let's create a business process before we take the caps off our pens Ally was there, marker in hand standing before the board creating groups and sub-groups.

but joy of joy, the subject of the meeting was the dissolution of said meeting. my cup overfloweth! so ally proposed smaller groups and explained how small groups should appoint a group leader.

"thanks mother," Kay snipped which was refreshingly out of character, but taking the words out of everyone's mouth i believe.

"well shouldn't we first meet and get a feel for the project and decide where the project is heading and if there is a best way to approach the project and maybe, i don't know, make someone in charge of the project?" succint jimmy proposed.

many colored pens were used. names were circled. arrows pointed this way and that.

i looked out the window and thought deeply: i should have attacked with three laps to go.

ian coughed hinting at his next block of sick time. Earnest Cal was earnest. Jimmy mentioned his retirement in two months three times. i drew a very geometric box with shadows around the word communication. and a flower with two petals.

at 2:55 jimmy announced we had five more minutes left at which time Ally proposed we create a business process for a lunch meeting to bid adieu to this weekly meeting -- at once plugging in her laptop to the overhead projector and firing up our online Calendar to plug in a lunch date.

"i guess Kay won't be joining us," ally said to kay's retreating form as she up and left the room.

I tap danced all the way to the elevator rejoicing in the timely death of this weekly meeting. nice natalie pressed the button in the elevator and the doors closed.

"I'll miss that meeting," i said to her.
"i'll have to work on my sarcasm," she smiled.

Monday, February 05, 2007

just a wee post before i konk out. we had us a lovely time in balmy Buellton and SB this weekend. i feel so inspired and happy to be on this team. this time last year i was telling linda every other minute, "i'm not racing this year. that's it. i don't want to do it." she started writing a tiny "NR" (Not Racing) in red ink on the calendar every time i said it. between the months of January, Feb and March the calendar was littered with those little red buggers. but this year, crikey, two races and it's only february! what has happened. well OV and all his motivational chit-chat and fun vids, and team-tactic talk and just the way he is as a rider is so damn encouraging that ,well, it's catching. And our queen bee Ms. VB has such a way of keeping the mood upbeat and silly and yet she gets down to business when business needs getting down to. And teammates! what a new concept. i've been bottom feeding for so long in races that it's so nice to have a friendly little school of fishies to go swimming and hunting with. and i will try my darndest to give up my solo scavenger ways and be a team player.

so anyhow today. we went out to Ellens had us some pancakes then rode a little. then drank us some wine and then did Solvang. more wine for Linda, five hours of driving for me and here we are with the babies. now, i ask you. does anyone know where you can get a good Kobe burger in Berkeley? damn you VB.

Friday, February 02, 2007

i just got my pickup-fixed. the rotar needed refinishing. now it's as good as new which is sometime in 1994. it runs well, hardly ever has a problem -- apart from the dead battery which left me and ippoc stranded in the parking lot after our cruise -- but really it's a junky little thing. but i come from a long line of junky car owners and it gives me a warm feeling to drive in it because it reminds me of my father, a Scot, who did not care for things flashy or American (though mostly American) and who could give a flying haggis about what type of car he drove (or, i might add, how uncomfortable his four kids were in the back seat) as long as it got him where he wanted to go.

i remember when we moved back from Scotland he went looking for a car for his family of six. i told my friend Julie Schaffer that he was buying a car. Her dad owned a convertible red Fiat that he picked Julie up in some days after school. when i told Julie that my dad was buying a car she was most excited. she wanted to know if it'll be four-door, a hatch-back, will it be a V8, 4-wheel drive -- she'd obviously grown up in a family who paid attention to these kinds of things. "i have no idea," I said but hoped that there would be more room in the back seat and a little heat and maybe handles on the back window unlike our old Volvo that we'd ran into the ground back in Scotland. "i want bloody power steering," my mother had requested. so when my dad tooted the horn outside of Julie's house, and we ran to the front door and threw it open to see a bright yellow Datsun B210 Honeybee, complete with zippy bee decal, i sensed disapproval when Julie said, "a Honeybee?" i thought it looked kinda cute, like a toy car, but when my dad walked up her driveway toward me, i couldn't help but say, "a Honeybee Daddy?"

the six of us would pile into the Honeybee on weekends and drive along Highway 17 to Santa Cruz. my father who cared about other drivers as much as he cared about cars would creep along at 55mph and i would look out the window at the people in other cars flipping us off. perhaps they were flipping us off for going so slow, perhaps it was just the retarded Honeybee itself. i don't know. i think of it now and wonder, was he insane?

after the honeybee, and a divorce my father purchased a shiny silver Toyota Corolla. it wasn't brand new, but it looked it. for a short period of time, say a week, he kept it in mint condition. when the week was over, the usual decay set in, rotting from the inside out. he smoked inside the car and filled up the ashtray with his butts. he then rolled down the window and let the fresh air kick up the ash from the ashtray and coat the interior of the car creating a kind of Pompei effect. Birds shat on the hood, the windshield, the bumper and he left their white splots there to harden like whiteout. an unopened plastic container of orange juice was left inside the car one summer day. thereafter, the front seatbelt was always sticky and tiny tendrils of orange pulp could be seen dangling from the roof of the car. when the car was sideswiped and the driver's door needed replacing we did not go to a dealer; we went to an auto salvage lot and picked up a black one and had it slapped on. but when my father plowed into a post in his parking lot and accordianed the hood, he found that a little rope was all that was needed this time, no trip to the lot necessary.

so when i drive my little piece of shit, i think of him.