Saturday, December 31, 2005


Ring out, wild bells, to the wild sky,
The flying cloud, the frosty light:
The year is dying in the night;
Ring out, wild bells, and let him die.

Ring out the old, ring in the new,
Ring, happy bells, across the snow:
The year is going, let him go;
Ring out the false, ring in the true.

Ring out the grief that saps the mind,
For those that here we see no more;
Ring out the feud of rich and poor,
Ring in redress to all mankind.

Ring out a slowly dying cause,
And ancient forms of party strife;
Ring in the nobler modes of life,
With sweeter manners, purer laws.

Ring out the want, the care, the sin,
The faithless coldness of the times;
Ring out, ring out my mournful rhymes,
But ring the fuller minstrel in.

Ring out false pride in place and blood,
The civic slander and the spite;
Ring in the love of truth and right,
Ring in the common love of good.

Ring out old shapes of foul disease;
Ring out the narrowing lust of gold;
Ring out the thousand wars of old,
Ring in the thousand years of peace.

Alfred, Lord Tennyson

...but not holding my breath.

Happy New Year 'yall.

Tuesday, December 27, 2005

You Know its Time... clean up your computer's hard drive when you discover there's more space on the iPod Shuffle than your C: and D: drives, combined.

The Day After...

Twenty minutes in the "10 Items or Less" line at Walmart (made good time, considering) I surveyed the "Customer Service/Returns" line. Yeah, I would have taken that stuff back too.

Sunday, December 25, 2005

The Reason for My Season...

I make a short trip out of town each year, on Christmas day, to be with my dearest friend. It has nothing to do with presents, decorations, or a really good meal.

This is her favorite day - when she gathers 25+ people to eat and spend some time together. The experience is like going to Chuck-E-Cheese, only the food is so much better! (And you may need a mild sedative when you get home.) But that's not why I go.

I go for that moment when all the kids (and there's so many now) have opened their gifts and begin talking to each other. This moment comes and goes quickly - the casual observer might miss it. It is then - when my dearest friend and her sister - move their attention to each other and together carefully unwrap their gifts.

Their moment is what I look forward to. The warm easy smiles and sparkling eyes. The hugs full of love and appreciation for the thought that went into a particular gift. Just before this moment passes these women hold each other and take in the family around them. Most of the people in this room they made - directly or indirectly - and they smile.

And then its gone. Time to clean up the wrapping paper. Load the dishwasher. Cover countless casserole dishes with plastic wrap and foil. Until next year...

Look for those moments.

Wednesday, December 21, 2005

I Escaped...

...from the luncheon part of "The Demon Office Christmas Party" and food-borne illness fest. I didn't want to miss the Dirty Santa part (remember - I'd invested $1.00 American already).

Here's the secret. Have something notarized. (I don't know if this is possible in other countries, so it may only work here.)

For several reasons - I'm not one for telling lies. 1. It royally sucks to be lied to. AND 2. It's just so damned hard to cover a lie. So - I really did have to get something notarized during the germ fest part of the shindig. (details of why I needed to have something notarized will follow in about 6-8 weeks - here's a hint: It involves Corn Dogs)

Manager: "Aren't you staying for the luncheon?"
Me: "Oh, no. I have to run to the bank and have something notarized."
Manager: "Oh, I completely understand. You're not going to miss Dirty Santa are you?"
Me: "Are you kidding? I can't miss that!"and then to myself - I want to see what my return on investment is going to be.

And the ROI? A gift set of Tabasco Sauce flavors and a basting brush.

Tuesday, December 20, 2005

The One Really Sucky Thing...

...about the holiday season is the office holiday party. I hate this ritual and here's why:
  1. Potluck. Need I say more here? This should be called "The Sea of Brown Food" Day! How many things can a person put French's Fried Onions in/on?
  2. Green Bean Casseroles. It deserves it's own entry.
  3. That guy - that EVERYONE knows he doesn't wash his hands after using the bathroom/picking his nose/and/or/wedgy - he's the first in line and has to touch every bit of food before he puts anything on his plate.
  4. That other guy that you suspect doesn't wash his hands long enough AND he smells everything before he'll put it on his plate.
  5. Dirty Santa
  6. The obligitory Dirty Santa gifts. It used to be a $5.00 OR LESS gift. Each year the cost seems to go up and up. This year the email said "...and start thinking about that $7 - $15 gift." Don't tell anyone, but just for spite I went to Dollar Tree this year. I suspect that most of the folks in my office will do the same thing - so I don't know why the guy that organizes this 45 minutes of hell tries to push the threshold.

Don't get me wrong. I love this season. I love the lights and the music (to a point). I love how for just a little while people go out of their way to be good to each other. Charitable donations/volunteer hours increase and we think more about how we can be better people. We get to see people we haven't seen in a long time.

And finally # 7. The one guy (see #6) that gives a crap about this stupid tradition. I have no idea why we continue to humor this guy....we are sheep!

Thursday, December 01, 2005

Home Depot...

...should sell ibuprofin.