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Friday, December 22, 2006

Merry Christmas!

For to us a child is born,
to us a son is given,
and the government will be on his shoulders.
And he will be called
Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God,
Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.

Isaiah 9:6 NIV

Queen MAB is taking a brief hiatus from the Manifesto in order to celebrate the birth of her King and Savior. Jesus Christ is the reason for the season, and for that matter, the reason I live all year long. Have a Merry Christmas!

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

I rock, therefore I am.

In celebration of my 25th year of fabulousness, I've finally got my "right-hand ring" wrapped securely around my finger. Because I rock, I totally deserve one. Isn't she resplendent?

Thursday, December 14, 2006

The Hunt

I only have a few weeks left before the big day. No, I'm not talking about Christmas. I'm referring to New Year's Day, the day that I unleash a new boxed calendar, poised to sit atop my desk at work for the remainder of 2007.

The quest for the perfect desk calendar is of paramount importance. Two out of the past three years, I've had a bum calendar. Not only does a desk calendar set the mood for the entire year, but it aims to deliver happiness, during an otherwise bleak day in corporate America.

At the beginning of my first full calendar year of employment at Adtec, the year 2004, I purchased a Mary Engelbreit desk calendar. Throughout the year, I was pleased with my purchase, as it provided uplifting quotes and an abundance of heartwarming illustrations. The amount of joy this calendar brought me solidified the need for and importance of a desk calendar to enhance the office experience.

In 2005, a coworker gave me a desk calendar of misspellings, misquotes, misprints, etc. found in publications, heard on television or radio, and on public signage. Considering my journalistic background, one might think I really liked this desk calendar. Wrong! It's intent was for humor, but only approximately one in 50 days of the calender succeeded. If you do the math, that's only 7.3 days the entire year that enduced laughter. Each day, I would physically whine, boo, and hiss at the poor attempts at humor, and it got to the point where my lame calendar was the butt of many of my officemate's jokes.

After a year of depressive calendar humor, I was a bit apprehensive about experimentation. I needed something safe and dependable for 2006. I purchased another Mary Engelbreit desk calendar, ready to renew my spirit and encourage inspiration. I guess I got what I paid for, because the 2006 ME calendar was almost identical to the 2004 ME calendar. Sure, the illustrations were marked for different dates, and occasionally, there would be a new quotation or cartoon, but for the most part, it was exactly the same calendar. You can imagine my disappointment. And believe me, my calendar snafus did not go unnoticed by my officemate, using the opportunity to once again, make my calendar the subject of a long-running joke.

I'm resolved to make 2007 different and the stakes are high. I spent some time on Calendars.com and was able to narrow my calendar search to a list of six choices. I need your help in making a decision. Below is a synopsis of each calendar, and my argument for its inclusion on my desk at work. Please provide me with your choice in the comment section. Or, if you'd like to recommend a calendar not listed, please do so. Here they are, in random order:

Forgotten English presents arcane, archaic words related to vanished professions, objects, activities, customs, and states of mind and body. In addition, obscure fĂȘtes and festivals, notable birthdays and anniversaries, and dubious medical, hygienic, and culinary procedures are also noted. A learned but lighthearted lexicon is essential reading for the collector of long-lost language. I'm intriqued by this calendar because of my love of all things vocab.

Wild Words from Wild Women features well-known female athletes, politicians, entertainers, and humanitarians. The women dish on everything from men to motherhood to martinis, focusing on vice, rather than virtue. Constantly seeking wisdom from strong women, this calendar will provide me with a daily dose of femmie power.

Would You Rather...? asks hilarious questions created to perplex, provoke, and amuse, placing you between the rockiest of rocks and the hardest of hard places. Consider mind-blowing dilemmas in the areas of curses, sex, fantasies, deaths, tortures, and more. Over the course of time, I've played the games "what would you do if..." and "would you still be my friend if..." with many of you. Games like this express my wacky-quirky side. If nothing else, this calendar would provide some interesting blog fodder...

Latin Phrase-a-Day provides amusing and incisive quips and quotations from the mother of the Romance languages. Each is followed by a phonetic rendering of the phrase and its English translation. In my quest to further familiarize myself with this ancient language, this calendar will allow me to "crescat scientia vita excolatur."

The Bad Girl's Rage-a-Day offers daily tips and tricks for getting out of dud dates, making home beauty shrines, and inspiration from notorious Bad Girls of history. Sometimes I need an excuse to cater to my inner brat, and this calendar may be the perfect stumbling block. I actually purchased this calendar last year as a gift for Amanda, so any primary source input from her is appreciated.

Wacky Websites leads to zany, intriguing and entertaining WWW destinations. My unhealthy obsession with the Internet, combined with my penchant for random factoids, can finally be satisfied. This calendar will feed my addiction.

Friday, December 8, 2006

The best-laid schemes o' mice an' men...

My friend, Natalie, paid me a visit last night at the Aspen Bungalow. Nat wanted a refresher course in knitting, as she would like to make her mom a scarf for Christmas. As we are knitting away to our heart's content, we hear my little Bastard cat Jack rustling around in my kitchen. I walk into the kitchen, and see him crouched down at my baker's rack in the corner. I bend down, and look under the baker's rack, expecting to see a bug, or an ice cube (one of Jack's favorite diversions), yet I find nothing. I can tell Jack is acting kind of strange, but I shrug it off and walk back into the living room to continue knitting.

Nat and I are having a grand ol' time, but we are becoming rather distracted by Jack's incessant him-hawing around. She gets up and walks into the kitchen, and finds Jack sitting on top of my wicker baskets filled with canned and boxed goods, on the lower shelf of my baker's rack. Nat picks up a box of microwave popcorn, and says aloud, "nope, nothin' under there." Then she picks up something else, and at once, a mouse scurries out, racing across the kitchen floor. Nat pops up and screams, "It's a mouse!" and I start screaming in shock. As we watch the mouse run around the perimeter of my living room, with Jack not far behind, we're still screaming and laughing, and yelling at Jack to catch the mouse. Of course, this is very distracting to Jack, and he can't decide whether to watch us freak out, or chase the mouse itself.

The mouse runs into my bedroom and behind some furniture. Natalie and I are encouraging Jack to do his job and earn his keep. We pull out my furniture from the wall, but much to our dismay, the little mousey is nowhere to be found. I could tell Jack was disappointed as well.

Mind you, Jack has never seen a mouse before (other than the little faux-fur, catnip-filled, mock-mice that are littered around my apartment). He's always been an avid bird watcher, and spends his days hunting the birds through my sliding glass doors. Mousey was a special and unexpected treat for Jack.

Nat and I give up the search, and go back to our knitting. We sit there for a couple hours longer, while Jack is casing the apartment suspiciously. Nat gets up to leave, and goes to the bathroom. A minute later, she emerges, and walks out very slowly. Quietly, she says, "don't freak out, but the mouse is in the bathroom, and he's on top of your shower curtain rod."

Where's Waldo?

I get up, grab my camera, and sure enough, see the little mousey perched frightfully on top of my shower curtain rod. Nat and I start laughing, and began to formulate a game plan. I go back into the kitchen and grab my 64 oz. insulated Diet Coke mug. We walk painstakingly into the bathroom, and shut the door. Each of us grab a bathmat and roll them up to place in front of the crack of the bathroom door and the closet door.

We kindly introduce ourselves to the mouse, and politely ask him his name. Nat asks if I'd like to keep him, and we start declaring names for the little mouse. Tucker! Stuart Little! Ralph! Later on, I think of Fievel and Mighty.

Could he be any cuter?!

Nat and I are now ready to make a move. She's armed with the jug, and I slowly start to pull the shower curtain away from mousey. In a last ditch effort to escape us, mousey leaps off the shower curtain rod, and onto the floor. At once, Nat and I are on our hands and knees, scrambling around the bathroom, trying to trap the little guy. We finally corner him, and Nat scoops him up into the jug. Success!

I open the bathroom door, and Jack is all up in my business, realizing that we have mousey in our grasp. Nat and I walk outside and down the steps to the grassy knoll below my apartment, an let little mousey go. You can tell he's a bit shocked at first at the cold. Afterall, he probably was just coming inside to get warm on a bitter cold Tennessee evening. I can't blame the little guy for that---but he made a big mistake and picked an apartment where lives a cat.

After Nat leaves, I walked into the bathroom and begin to put the shambles back together. In the corner where we finally pinned the little fellow, lies two small mouse droppings. I guess Nat and I literally "scared the shinkta" out of him.

In honor of this experience, I'd like to call to mind an excerpt from a famous poem, written by the late-great Robert Burns, titled "To a Mouse, On turning her up in her nest with the plough."

But, Mousie, thou art no thy lane,
In proving foresight may be vain;
The best-laid schemes o
' mice an' men
Gang aft agley,
An'lea'e us nought but grief an' pain,
For promis'd joy!

Sunday, December 3, 2006


Is it just a matter of time, Bironas!
Is it a destiny, a destiny--
Or is it just a game in my mind, Bironas!

Sure does feel good.

Vinnie's passing and running game, Jeff's brilliant deception... Can we purge our sin, and let the revival begin?

Friday, December 1, 2006


Mom always said, "if you can't say something nice, then don't say anything at all."


On a high note, I saw my first snowflake of the season this morning. I can't think of a better way to kick off December.

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