Friday, June 29, 2007

Yngwie sucks her tumb!

I had no idea kittens do this, but yeah, I guess if your entire life consists of nursing and sleeping, when you dream, you'd probably be dreaming about nursing. It's so adorable seeing her suck her thumb:

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Thursday, June 28, 2007

Party Planning Maddness

Contrary to Mentok's suggestion on getting the Fiesta Optima 2000, we ended up getting a garden variety charcoal grill. The suggestion was highly appreciate though. :)

However, I should add that T and I probably had too much fun making a big deal out of asking every Lowes and Home Depot worker:
Excuse me. Do you carry the Fiesta Optima 2000??? You don't! Why don't you carry the Fiesta Optima 2000? We heard it's ranking is slightly lower than the excellent category..., but at $200, it packs a lot of performance for a very attractive price."

With a name like the Fiesta Optima, you can't resist.

As for point by point musings, this is what I have so far:

-I'll probably throw on stuff like Kings of Convenience, Snow Patrol, Delirium, Cocteu Twins and Dolly's Pillbox as "atmosphere" music in the Red Room (the study). This is where Sammi can get holed up giving Tarot reading if that ends up being "entertainment" for the evening.

-The music room will be where all the jamming takes place since it has the most space, outlet plugs, quick access to food, the piano and harp. The good stereo is in there and it'll house all the "harder" stuff like Combichrist, KMFDM, Lucid Dementia, Underworld, Colony 5, etc. to play whenever we feel like taking a break.

-Upstairs Blue Room (the craft room) will be opened up for board games and a safe spot for the kids to hide out away from the parents who are getting tanked below

-Oak tree has been trimmed by the darling husband. I had to don this bikini (don't look, JBro, lest you go blind) and dance around to get him motivated, but hey, it got trimmed. Oy, the things a wife has to do!

-grill has been taken care of :)

-Cats are definitely getting locked up due to the kittens. They'll stay in the master bathroom upstairs and people who want to see them can as long as either me or hubby accompany them.

-Definitely wearing the tiara

-I still have no idea what I should wear clothing wise. :( I kinda just want to throw on jeans and a t-shirt. However, I wanna look pretty or fluffy or both...I dunno

-I'm taking pics with the SLR. We've got 2 other digital cameras each with video on it, so I figured we'd just pass those around to make sure we capture as much debauchery as possible.

-I'm gonna do my best to get tanked and let loose for once. Intemperance amongst my peers is highly encouraged as with atonal yowling

-I agree that setting up chairs will help calm my nerves as people show up. So will arranging food and flowers and what not.

Current food items:
-Lots of BBQ courtesy of Monica and Blake (I love you)...I think we have pork ribs, beef rib roast, bratwurst and possibly brisket. I'll be making shish-kabobs too
-Baked beans courtesy of Sandy
-Bean and corn salad
-Roasted Nightshade veggies
-Guacamole and chips
-Assorted veggies with curry dip and ranch dip
-Various cheeses with crackers
-Pesto and bread
-Maybe Prosciutto, basil and cream cheese pinwheels
-Possibly some hummus dip
-T apparently got me this cake
-Sammi is making chocolate covered macaroons

I don't know why, but I'm always worried about not having enough food.

Alcohol I've got:

-Gold Tequila
-Silver tequila
-Bombay Sapphire gin (my absolute fave)
-Jack Daniels Whiskey (JBro's fave)
-Jim Beam bourbon (for Sammi's bourbon and coke...and for Shawn and Jay to drown their sorrows in. I kid. Sorta.)
-Jamaican rum
-Bicardi 151 (for my baby cousin Eric to do shots of)

I need to get lots of mint, powdered sugar, peach nectar, honey, limes, oranges, soda water and cream. That way combined with the above we can have mojitos, margaritas, tonics, mint juleps, white Russians, Cindy Kisses and a whole slew of other good stuff.

I also need to get a bunch of non-alcoholic beverages...

Maybe some Lambic? Riesling (T's fave...but he doesn't want to drink too much)? A red wine or 2? Port? I know Troy loves port....Hopefully someone will bring good beer.

Ack! I feel like I've left something out, but I'm not sure what.

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Wednesday, June 27, 2007

cute overload

At 6 days old:

Speaking of cute office mate Sejal (you can see her in this pic behind me, 6 months pregnant and very hungry) finally had her baby girl on Saturday, June 23 at 3:30pm. She was 7.5 lbs and 20.5 inches long and her name is Nitya.

I think she already has the most lovely features and I love her pink cheeks!

Sejal and I work on the 3rd floor of a really old building (used to be a dormitory) that doesn't have an elevator, so as the months progressed it got more and more difficult for her to make it up the stairs. I think all that excercize and Quznos subs produced a very healthy and beautiful baby girl though!

Congrats to Sejal and Milap!

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Saturday, June 23, 2007

Kittens at 3 days old

They're all close to 6 ounces at this point.

As you can see they've fluffed out and gained a gut:

Etouffee eating and nursing at the same time:




I think it's cute how their ears are already open. Their eyes will open in a few days. The white one is already showing signs of silver color pointing (not orange as I expected). I think she's going to be an incredibly pretty cat.

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First Kitten Photos

Etouffee acting strange that Thursday morning around 5am:

What T and I saw that confirmed that Etouffee was indeed giving birth (Yes, Capo was breech):

Second baby:

First Etouffee family photo

The 3rd baby was a surprise! I went to check email and went back into the bathroom and around 9:05, he had just popped out. It was over an hour and a half between the 2nd and 3rd kitten.

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Friday, June 22, 2007

temporary names for the kittens

Although Monnie's idea on naming them after Etouffee/Cajun related items is cute, I've always wanted 3 cats named these things at the same time, so I figured the kittens could have these temporary monikers until they find a good home:

White Kitty = Yngwie
Orange Kitty = Humbucker
Grey Kitty = Capo

This is a good gauge for which circle of friends you would belong to if you get the significance of how these names are related to one another. :)

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Thursday, June 21, 2007

3 kittens video

First video of our bundles of joy. Sooo cute!

We're so proud of her....and we pretty much got 1 of each color. Cool eh?

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I am a grandma!

Um. We just noticed half a kitten come out of Etouffee!


I wonder how many are in her??

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Oh my god.

I think my cat really was pregnant when we got her from the shelter and that the vet really meant I can't tell when she said "I think she's spayed."

It appears that Etouffee is going into labor.

Either that or she's on the brink of dying or something.

At around 5 am she started acting agitated, tore up one of my favorite comforters, kept burrowing under blankets, started to pant like crazy (her nose is bright red too) and then she started meowing insistently and differently. She's not yeowling like she's in heat either.

She's going through these phases where she's panting like mad and tensing and then stops. I don't know. Those sure seem like contraction to me. It's definitely inline with what I've read online so far.

We put her in a bathroom with a lot of clean towels, food, water and a litter box. She won't eat.

Given her huge ass nipples, sudden weight gain over the past month and the fact that Sammi went "Um, I think she's pregnant." I'm pretty sure this is what happening. We're gonna call the vet once the place opens up of course, but heh, it's not like they noticed she was preggers the last time we brought her in (which was recent for "ringworm" and that too was a misdiagnosis)

I'm gonna be a grandma soon!

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Monday, June 18, 2007

Munchie Mondays: Cindy's Peach Pie

It's peach season in Texas right now and I've got to say this year is a pretty decent batch. Texas peaches tend to be smaller and more fragrant than their usual grocery store counter parts (normally from California) with a pinkish yellow flesh speckled with red that comes off of the pit easily ("free stone). Despite the size their flavor and flowery aroma is really unmatched compared to other peaches I've had.

For this recipe I like to use lime juice instead of the typical lemon juice because I feel like it really enhances the flavor. I like my peach pies on the tart side, so feel free to increase the sugar content up to an additional 1/3 cup if you want a sweeter pie.

I like to mix up super ripe peaches with those that are under ripe (they still tend to be sweet) for mouth feel purposes. Also, don't worry about peeling them. If you slice them thin enough the skin gives a nice color to the filling

Cindy's Peach Pie (serves 8...although I ate half a pie myself)

2 prepared pie crusts (one in dish, one to cover)
5 cups of thinly sliced peaches (or about 10-12 small to medium sized fruit)
1/3 cup of whole wheat flour
1/3 cup of firmly packed brown sugar
1/4 cup of granulated sugar
juice of 1 lime
1/4 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp nutmeg
pinch of salt
1 tbs of butter

Preheat oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit.
Slices peaches thinly (1/8 inch of thinner) into a large bowl. Immediate squeeze lime juice over peaches and toss gently to prevent browning.

In another bowl, mix wheat flour, sugars, spices and salt thoroughly. Sprinkle over peaches and toss gently so that peach slices are covered with sugar mixture.

Add the pie filling to one of the prepared pie dishes ensuring that peach slices are lying flat or packed in rather firmly. This'll help the cook the filling more evenly. Dot with slivers of butter.

Cover mixture with another pie crust. Seal and flute edges and cut ventilation holes into top crust.

Place the pie into a preheated oven and bake for about 1 hr or until the juices are bubbling out of the top crust. I suggest placing the pie plate on a cookie sheet for this reason. By the way, you should put strips of aluminum foil on the fluted edge and remove 20 minutes prior to finish, but I just always forget. If you make the fluted edge thick enough, it won't burn too badly.

This goes really well with a scoop or ice cream or a doused in half and half.

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Friday, June 15, 2007

On mix cds

I love mix CDs. When I was a kid, we had mix tapes. I doubt there were such things a mixed phonographs though, so I don't know what my mom used in her youth...

They tell you a lot about the person who gave you one and likewise, can serve as a means to express yourself. I recently got a kick ass mix CD from none other than Tim Young all the way from London for the purposes of an upcoming Contrast Podcast show:

Contents will be revealed close to the show's airing.

Over at the NIN forum Echoing the Sound we do CD exchanges as well and I have to say I've discovered a lot of "new" music I instantly liked through this activity. The collection of international stamps and packing material is a source of entertainment as well.

This is the best avenue for such an expression of individuality. I call these types Category I. You're only loosely related to the one you are sending the item to (in the above case pod casters and NINers), because it's an organized event there's no expectation of reciprocation, and most importantly, physical distance protects you from the emotionally damaging eye roll or reactive violent punch that indicated that your person had the thought "Motherfucker. What kind of shit is this?" after scanning the track listings.

Now with close friends and family, these perks are meaningless because if they really did think to themselves, "Motherfucker. What kind of shit is this?" they'd tell you to you face, but probably wouldn't punch you. Furthermore, you're most likely aware of what they want in the first place. You get the picture. This is Category II

As a side note, my close friend Shawn got a whole freaking Mp3 blog and pod casting site from me. That's how special he is. Seriously, that's the whole reason why the Adzuki Bean Stash got started in the first place. Shawn and I would religiously trade music on a regular basis until he was shipped off to Kansas for grad school and it got to be an expensive hobby. Now you know. He's Category Alpha.

So here's the grey area (which can border on uncomfortable). You've either got a new friend or acquaintance that you do interact with and you need to make a mix CD for them. These guys are Category III Either they've asked you for new music, or you want to perk their interest with some of your demos, maybe they're getting it as a low steaks gift (who doesn't like new music?) or perhaps you want to open their eyes to the wide new world of underwater drumming...whatever the reason. You may not know their tastes well enough to compile something that you feel confident that they'd like.

On the other hand, they're not close enough to tell you if they don't like it. Upon asking them if they liked what they heard, they'll usually give you a cringy-looking smile and go "Oh, it was...nice."

Or, they just ignore you for a while and hope you forgot that they ever got the CD to begin with. That's the small issue.

I was discussing with a buddy at work about a bigger problem that has cropped up in the past with this Category III demographic: the potential mishaps involving lyrics and song title interpretations on their end.

I'm sure you've all been there before. You're getting to know Person A and for whatever reason you felt the great need to put NIN's "Closer" on there. Because you were lazy you ended up duplicating the exact same mix CD for Person B whose birthday you forgot and then all of sudden in the middle of a board meeting...

Person A blurts out: "I think it's vile that you want to fuck me like an animal!!"

Person B: "Wait, you gave me the same song as Person A? I thought we had some sort of connection going...."

Person A: "You're disgusting. I don't want you drinking any of my honey that's in my hive! And I don't care about your scraped up knees."

Person B: "I thought I got you closer to god. You mean to say you didn't really want to go to bible study with me? I thought you were falling apart on the inside. I thought you were asking me to make you perfect...and you go and give someone else the same song???"

Person A: "You bet your existence is flawed...asshole."

You see how these things go. It's just a song with a good beat and nasty lyrics but then the whole fun of it all gets messed up with over-interpretation. I'm just trying to give you a mix CD out of the goodness of my heart, not to fuck with your mind or subliminally plant messages of lust or tell you I'm suicidal, dammit!

Then you get those who are truly confused as to why you gave them one in the first place or why you gave them so many songs. This is definitely awkward and comes about when you misread the gift-taking-acceptability-factor of an individual. Because I love making mix CDs, I have a bad tendency to over deliver. Someone people happily accept things from you (Category III.1), a small but appreciated number are prone to reciprocate (Category III.2) and the there are those who think you're trying to get something out of them (Category III.3). Unfortunately with the Category IIIs this is a necessary thing to evaluate and oddly mix CDs are the perfect avenue for such a test.

Anyhow, with me it's easy. The more music you get, the more I like hanging out with you. So yeah, Shawn's earnings take the cake. The goal is to be a Category Alpha with someone.

As for Jay and his 3 cd b-day gift, one for each decade I rationalized, we're gonna have to wait and see what his reaction is if any. His initial response was completely unreadable as if he forgot he's gonna be officially old in a few days. In the 3 seconds I interacted with him, I did parse through all the lyrical content in my head to make sure it wasn't as "stupid" as Snow Patrol's "Chasing Cars" (That's his opinion. Although I argue that Jay *is* Snow Patrol. Watch the video). I did not however, check for potential smut. I felt like I didn't need to check but given that his inscrutable verbal response was "3 cds?" I'm biting my nails a bit.

I just pray he doesn't freak out during a web developer's meeting.

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Thursday, June 14, 2007

more things to contemplate

-Should my mix cds feature one genre each or be a mixture of types?
-Should the discs in the 5 cd changer be played in order or randomly?
-Should the upstairs area be opened up for gaming purposes?
-Should I trim the oak tree out back to make it look prettier or leave it all gnarly for shade purposes?
-What kind of grill should I get?
-Should the cats be locked up?
-Tiara or no tiara?
-What should I wear?
-Who should take pics?
-How tanked should I encourage people to get? (I'm notoriously bad about encouraging people to drink...I also make a damn good white russian.)
-Should jamming take place in the Red Room (study) or the actual Music Room?
-Should I strategically place chairs around the house or just let people figure that out on their own?

At least I have food and drinks more or less figure out.


Colony 5: Fixed

Swedish band Colony 5 is an act that I discovered and instantly fell in love with thanks to the fantastic site Pandora Radio. If you're nostalgic for the sound of old school synthpop like New Order and vocal stylings of Erasure, are a fan of VNV Nation or CTRL, or just want to add more danceable tunes to your queue, you might want to check out this group.

The sound veers a little more on the dark side of synthpop/electronica but it's still very club friendly. Fixed is a solid album with a consistent sound and incredibly catchy hooks. Band members P-O Svensson, Magnus Kalnins do a fantastic job melding relevant lyrics with intense programming and good composition. Their website, chock full of media is well worth a visit.

Listen to:
"Plastic World"
"Fallen Star"

Colony 5's Official Website
Colony 5's Myspace
Buy Fixed from

(promo shot from Colony5 wiki entry)

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Wednesday, June 13, 2007

celebrity look alikes

This facial recognition generator is a lot of fun to play with from time to time. It's accurate too. I ran an image of Trent Reznor with glasses on and it got a dead on reading that it was him...I frequently get Rachel Leigh Cook as my "top match" as well as Kristin Kreuk. Those make sense to me, but what I find baffling is the fact that Beyonce shows up often as well.

With a different pic:


Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Dream Project!

Ask and you shall receive. :)

I just got a phone call from the director of the UTLC and learned that I got the web redesign bid. Considering that I pretty much get along with everyone in that department, this should be a wonderful and fulfilling project.

The problem with coding is that sometimes it gets mundane but with a website redesign I get to fool around a bit with layout and aesthetics...not to mention that I'll be retaking everyone's staff photos (as you know, I love doing photography). Unlike a file design or "back end" programming people actually "see" your work. Wheee! I feel invigorated because this is something I've been wanting to work on for a long time.

To top it all off, my current supervisor is incredibly supportive and that's real important to me too.

Monday, June 11, 2007

great quote

This is a great quote that I saw posted in my friend Kit's journal:

"You don't appreciate a lot of stuff in school until you get older. Little things like being spanked every day by a middle aged woman: Stuff you pay good money for in later life." -- Emo Philips


Saturday, June 09, 2007

konked out

And as a follow up to the previous deep and depressing post, I present to you a sliver of my version of 29 courtesy of Monica during the last Meatfest:

Somehow having my face obstructed by a chair just adds to the whole image. The shirt is incredibly appropriate given that I had consumed an entire rack of pork ribs prior to guzzling the sangria, margaritas and home brewed beer. For the record, I don't ever get drunk. Kinda sucks actually. My husband kissed another guy once when he was piss drunk. I have yet to have something that interesting happen to me because I just go straight to the tired phase which darlin' hubby is very understanding of (as indicated by the pic.)

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Friday, June 08, 2007

Jay through the view finder

What is a portrait supposed to convey? How a person actually looks or how the photographer sees that person inside of their head?

This is my friend Jay. He's the one I blog about so much that much to my chagrin, he's earned his very own tag in this journal. Normally I don't spell out full names in these blog posts, but I feel the absolute need to contribute at least one good picture of him to the land of the internets. No one deserves to only have really unflattering mug shots from work show up on Google image search (an no, he's not the publishing company CEO or the drag queen from Canada...). That's just my opinion. I guess I've also opened an ugly can of worms for any of his students or co-workers who have a secret crush on him...oh well. He's entitled to yell at me later, but somehow I don't think that'll happen. We'll see.

Anyway, when I was looking through the viewfinder of my camera during this impromptu portrait session I found myself feeling agitated that the image staring back at me through the lens didn't match the image I wanted to see. Thumbing through the previews I was getting increasingly flustered at the fact that none of the pics seemed to convey any of the patience, serenity, empathy or stoicism that my dear friend naturally possesses (notice I'm really careful not to use the word "sensitive.") I'm a tad arrogant about my portraiture skills, so you can imagine what I was going through.

Me: Damnit, Jay! Why do you look so fucking angry? You don't look like the "you" that's inside of my head...

Jay: It's the camera, babe. I really am that ugly...

Fucking hell.

What is so startling though is that when I loaded the files onto my computer and saw them in full size, I was a little struck by how revealing the photos were.

They say pictures don't lie. He also ain't ugly. The camera shows off his symmetric facial features, solid bone structure and intense blue eyes. What they don't tell you though is that pictures force you to see things that you've never noticed before. When you only choose to see the good parts, those "imperfections" core to a being's uniqueness get glossed over in memory: The furrowed brow, the fine lines etched around his eyes and mouth, moles etc.

I take portraits of my friends frequently and it never ceases to amaze me what I discover through the view finder. Maybe I'm just being to critcal or deep. I dunno, but those images often quietly remind me that we are all collectively getting older, some of us slowly worn down by emotional exhaustion and the responsibilities of day to day life thus causing us to become more aloof or jaded to protect ourselves...

There's that great line in Magnificent Ambersons by Booth Tarkington that I'm sure I've quoted before where Eugene is reflecting on George's state of mind and how his emotional growth will only come about by getting older:

at twenty-one or twenty-two so many things appear solid and permanent and terrible which forty sees are nothing but disappearing miasma. Forty can’t tell twenty about this; that’s the pity of it! Twenty can find out only by getting to be forty.

(Accidental hackneyed position. He's just kinda lost in thought during a cigarette break here as I was adjusting levels and taking test shots. Oddly, this pic looks the most like Jay age-wise)

I recall 22 was a lot prettier, but less complex. 29 is mature, but weathered a tad. He turns 30 in less than 10 days. What will 40 look like?

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Wednesday, June 06, 2007

on coffee drinks and the Dresden Dolls

It's $4 for one of those Starbuck's mocha creme frapps here on campus. I don't really like sweet drinks (except for white russians, but that's something different) and yet whenever I see someone walking by with one, I seem to have this bizarre sense of entitlement, like: I *deserve* an expensive coffee drink, damnit!.

Never mind that all it really consists of is a shot of caramel syrup, some chocolate syrup, cream, ice cubes and espresso...oh and whipped cream. $4. That's really expensive.

I drank half of mine and then tossed it into the trash because I started feeling nauseated. This stomach virus of mine that I got over the weekend hasn't quite let up 100% so excess sugar is just not a good thing. I didn't even get a caffine high off of this. Instead, I got my sugar spike and now I feel like sleeping a good 10 hours.

On a totally different topic, I LOVE the "Back Stabber" video by the Dresden Dolls. It's a bit racy so I didn't stick it directly in the post, but I have to say, I've got a thing for both Amanda Palmer and Brian Viglione. For one thing they look incredibly good together, but I just love their interactions. They're so comfortably blunt around each other. There was this documentary I was watching a few weeks ago where she's noshing on salad right before a rehearsal.

She turns to Brian: "Do I have anything in my teeth?"
He responds with something to the effect of: "Yeah, you've got a forest in there..."

They're about to get it on in the video which is why it's a little titillating (not to mention Brian looks fucking hot in drag) but in actuality they've got this solid, comfortable, deep platonic relationship going on. In interviews you read about how much they trust each other fully and completely. I mean, yeah, how many friends would you let grab your tit? Aside from Sammi, I can't think of anyone else and that was a one time deal and by accident (or so she claims. :P )

Amanda and Brian are like Scully and Mulder from X-files, if you ever watched that show. And if you recall, that Rolling Stone cover just made sexually frustrated nerds and sci-fi dorks across America go insane. I recall this one time when Ira Glass (at least I think it was Ira) on NPR just blurting out all of a sudden in the middle of a show that Mulder kissed Sculley after the new year's episode. That's how jarring it was. Scully and Mulder can't kiss! They're friends, damnit and yet, some part of you is just incredibly relieved because the world seems too cruel if they don't hook up just a little bit.

Anyway, the whole Amanda and Brian fascination falls into the same category. The two are artistic partners through and through and hot damn, do they photograph well:

Furthermore, Amanda is just amazingly good at writing. It's not high brow super intellectual blatherings but she has a way of conveying day-to-day life and musings in a such a frank and simple manner incredibly accurately (and really, isn't this the qualifications of a good blogger?). I'm not just talking about her song writing either. Here's a bit from her bio to give you a taste:

for some reason i was pretty friendless throughout high school, so i spent most lunches with my latin teacher or sitting with a styrofoam tray full of canned fruit and peanut butter and fluff sandwich in one of the practice rooms in the music department pounding out chords on the piano and writing about things i didn't like. like malls, and mean boys.

The Dresden Dolls diary is a great read if you haven't visited before.

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Monday, June 04, 2007

Marilyn Manson - the food pyramid

The new Marilyn Manson album comes out tommorow (June 5th). It's called "Eat Me, Drink Me." It really looks like Manson is taking a totally new direction. Apparently, this is a food and drink themed album. Check out the new video:

As you can see, the new Manson is much more kid friendly and concerned with our kids eating right. Obesity is becoming more and more of a problem among American kids these days. I'm glad to see that people like Manson are putting their talent and energy into fighting this problem.

OK, seriously, I'll be sure to buy a copy of the new album soon and I'll post a review here after I've had time to listen to it. Until then, you can listen to the new songs on Manson's myspace (links below). On the Official Web Site, you can click "video premiere" and check out what may be Manson's most shocking video yet (unlike the food pyramid song, this one is definitely not kid friendly!)

Marilyn Manson's myspace
Marilyn Manson | The Official Web Site
Buy "Eat Me, Drink Me" at

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Munchie Mondays: Moroccan Parsley Salad

Do you seriously put sliced lemon, pith and all into this salad?

I get that question all the time and yes, you do and yes, it tastes just fine. I'm referring to a fairly typical Moroccan salad whose predominant ingredients are parsely and lemon. Sometimes you'll see this type of salad with chunks of sardines in it, but I decided to go without. Instead, it makes a great accompaniment with fish due to it's fresh and strong flavor.

Because the skin of the lemon is eaten, make sure to select unblemished fruit, preferably organic and unwaxed. Parsley can be curly leaf or flat (I like flat more but did not have any one hand). Don't worry too much about exact measurements. As long as you've got more parsley than lemon, you're good to go.

Moroccan Parsley Salad
serves 4

1 bunch of parsley finely chopped
juice of 1 lime
1 lemon (1/2 juiced, the other half cut into paper thin slices skin and all)
1/3 cup of red onion thinly sliced or finely chopped
1 clove garlic crushed
3 tbs of olive oil
pinch of black pepper
1/2 tsp of salt

In a small bowl whisk citrus juices, olive oil, crush garlic and spices together. In a larger bowl lightly toss parsely, onion and lemon slices. Drizzle dressing on top and gently toss. Let sit for 30 minutes either in the refrigerator or at room temperature to allow flavors to mingle. I personally like this salad at room temperature. You can store it in an air tight container for up to a day.

This really good on a hot summer day with grilled or fried fish (course, it's hailing outside like crazy as I type this...)

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rainy day boredome pics

As you know, I don't work on Mondays, so aside from coming up with recipes and taking photos of them I also end up doing other artsy fartsy stuff like making jewelry, crocheting, music stuff or in this case dancing around the house. As you can see Etouffee really doesn't much care for my stretching:

Thanking my wonderful imaginary audince:

This is me dancing to Slayer:

Scary as it may sound, I may actually have too much free time, so to augment my work, I'm thinking of making a bid on redesigning the UTLC website. I'm not the most sophisticated web person in the world since my strengths lie in batch processing and main frame programming, but I do know proper html, css and java scripting fairly well. I also know how the folks function there and am very familiar with the business practices. That alone would make expedite the time lines. Furthermore, the site needs to be maintainable by non-technical staff, so it can't use complicated technologies anyway. It would be nice to manage a large scale project. I've already got the full support of my supervisor. I just need to figure out what all I need to do to get paper work done.

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Friday, June 01, 2007

They're like potato chips

I seriously considered walking down to Diabolo Rojo about 10 mintues ago and getting the upper part of my ear tagged just for the sake of waking up, and then talked myself out of it. I am so tired right now it is ridiculous. I only got about 2 hours of sleep last night because I didn't want to sleep on my newly punctured lobes even though I'm sure it would have been fine.

I can see why these things are addictive though. It's painful yes, but a very brief, intense and controlled pain which I imagine can be erotic to some people. It's self inflicted in a way and the results are aesthetically pleasing.

I saw an ad that said "you can fix anything with pain" and it made me chuckle. I have to agree in a weird detached way.

I also found this cool diagram from

What I really want now is one of those industrial bars as well as a spike stud through the top cartilage (like Voltaire's) but I don't think I could handle the pain. Maybe a stud first to get used to a cartilage piercing and then the industrial which is a little more complicated. The word "daith" just sounds cool to me for some reason.... I can't believe I'm already planning out more mutilations.

I've had ample people beg me to promise never to pierce my face and yes, I can assure you I'll never ever do that. I'm too cute, damnit...although admittedly I did have a labret for a whopping 12 hours in my lip back when I was 19. Mom doesn't know about this, but yeah, it hurt like hell, didn't sit right and I had to take it out due to the excessive swelling. I decided it just wasn't ever going to pass as "professional" even though I know so many people with one.

Anyhow, while sitting on the couch with my earlobe soaking in a shotglass of saline solution, I kept conjuring up images of people with more private piercings and chortling. I mean, really, it's got to feel really uncool to be dipping your reproductive organs into a vat of salt solution for 10 minutes, squatting, stooping, sitting, whatever. Not to mention, having inverted shot glasses suctioned to your nipples. I think I'll stick to the ear area, thank you very much.

In somewhat related news, I have this overwhelming desire to snap a pic of my friend Jay, print it out and scrawl in huge black letters across his pretty face "under appreciated, used and abused" and send it off to Post Secret. Which, although done with utmost affection and concern, would most likely come across as cruel and that's not my intention. I think I'm just utterly frustrated, after our epic conversation a couple days a go, that he honestly doesn't believe that he's beautiful inside and out. Either its genuine self degradation or worse, that he won't accept a compliment without first wondering if it was laced with some sort of cheap carnal exchange. The first notion drives me nuts because he's like a, hrmmm, I dunno, a 9.5/10 looks wise and perhaps one of the best conversationalists I've ever run into. The second notion is just a suspicion but still upsetting that my intuition tells me this.

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Live at Elysium with Chant

It was an apocalyptic night anyhow - weather not withstanding, my husband was actually going out with us to see Chant! All that storming and lightning though, it was hard to not feel charged up already, so it was kind of a bummer that when we got there, the club was pretty dead. It was early though, so there was still hope.

The opening act had come all the way from Brownsville, which, if you're not a Texan you've quite possibly never heard of ... for me, having grown up in Corpus and visited Brownsville a few times, it was kinda surreal getting to see Sin D.N.A. up there with their Macbook and keyboard, rockin' out hardcore. Didn't go with my memories of Brownsville to be sure, and props to them for that! Fortunately, more people seemed to arrive during the set - I'd been worried for them that they'd be playing to a rain-dead crowd after traveling so far.

But really, Chant was what I'd been waiting ... god at that point what, three weeks to see? And just watching everyone setting things up for his show was a sight to behold - I pointed out to my husband that some nights, that's as entertaining as the performances themselves when someone has enough gear and enough people running around with it. You get to recognizing faces, as so many people in the local scene are friends and help each other out, you spot folks from other bands helping haul gear about, and it's really very heartwarming - I like that there's cross pollination going on, not just tiny little insular circles of divadom! Makes me happy. I didn't stop to count the drums as they loaded up the stage, but I couldn't figure out where there was still going to be room for Bradley when they were done. Yeah, there were that many.

Mmmm but the show started, and I was right out there up front row with Ms. Adzuki and a few other folks, dancing to the pounding beat. See, I have a major weakness for drumming ... I've been to more than a few drum circles and bonfires, so it's safe to say I had pretty high expectations going into this. It was awesome though - the pounding sound tripped that tribal earth momma switch and I proceeded to thrash myself into an asthma attack... not that I let a little thing like THAT stop me. *grin* A brief break and I was back up front, back in the thick of the rhythm, dancing in ways I usually reserve for the privacy of my living room (probably much to the chagrin of my downstairs neighbors). The only thing I found myself wanting for the whole night was maybe an ashiko or a djembe or one of those great big taiko drums, but I'll be damned if I have any idea where he could have put even one more skin with all the other drums on stage.

At one point, Bradley made a nod to the other bands playing that night, commenting that the last band of the evening would "make everyone want to have sex." I laughed, because the mad power of the drums, visually and audially overwhelming me, already had me *quite* hot and bothered, and I couldn't imagine anyone else really topping that. There was this one beautiful moment, in fact, where Bradley came over to where the buckets and satellite dish were rigged and started wailing on them, and I happened to be right in front of that set. Water, whether deliberatly there or leftover from the pouring rain outside, spattered out and all over me, and I about fell over right there. It was this wonderfully organic, visceral moment you can only get from live performance. I can still feel it, cold droplets of water hitting my burning skin and practically steaming off me, I'd been dancing so hard. Rawr!

I sent the hubby to get cash so I could buy the Chant: Beginnings CD and the DVD he had out for sale, and I love them, but oh man, it's nothing compared to the live show. Chant is actually about to go on a tour in Florida with a few stops on the way this month, and if he's near you, GO. Sincerely. And dress light and flexible, 'cause you're going to want to be able to *move* for this one. And when the show's over, see if you can catch up with Mr. Bradley B. He's an absolute sweetheart of a man, a real treat to talk with if you get the chance. I kept thinkin' how I was kinda sorry I didn't have a silver Sharpie with me, I'd have gotten him to sign my black Chuck Taylors, seeing as how he'd gotten them moving so much, I thought maybe he'd been playing them, too.

(Included photo by Olivia, from Chant's MySpace pics. Someday I'll get my Sidekick to take a decent picture I can use!)

Upcoming Shows:
(please visit the band's webspaces for more details and most up to date info)
June 15thElysium Austin, TX
June 16thThe White RabbitSan Antonio, TX
June 18thThe Hi-Ho LoungeNew Orleans, LA

And then many, many shows in Florida, see his MySpace for details!

Chant on Myspace

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Does she look pregnant to you?

I dunno...she does eat a LOT. But, I'm thinking the nips are indicating "baby shrimp" inside of Etouffee (you've got Monica to thank for that one).

So, I guess when the doctor said "I think she's spayed" they really couldn't tell just from looking.

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