self-help blogs: my newest addcition

So, There is something evil about google reader. It makes it so easy to read dozens of blogs everyday. AND if you find a couple really good blogs on a subject you love then they usually link to other related blogs you will also love and then you end up with a dozen blogs all on the same subject. For me this subject is self improvement or as I have adopted; Life Hacks. It is interesting and useful to have a bunch of varied but similar views on life and how to work it. There are so many things I have read that I was astonished by and must read about 10 more times before I am satisfied. Here is a list of all of my "starred" google reader posts that are about life hacks. Most are from www.lifehack.org.
  1. The very simple secret to a happy marriage
  2. 5 little ways to show your love
  3. Believe it or not your beliefs affect the physical world
  4. 7 control points to curb the flow of negative energy into your life
  5. 22 ways to maximize your opportunity in life
  6. 12 ways to boost your positive energy
  7. 13 tricks to motivate yourself
  8. How to fail at practically anything
  9. Build a reading family: how to share reading with your kids
  10. 6 reasons why it makes sense to arrive early
  11. Eighteen ways to invest in your life
  12. Tapping into the fountain of youth
  13. Nine ways to live the lifestyle of a champion
  14. Master the simple science of positive thinking
  15. How to build a reliable work ethic
  16. Can you catch productivity
See what I mean. It's amazing!

On a side note I have almost finished "Joy Luck Club" by Amy Tan and it is WONDERFUL!!!



Funniest thing I've read all day!


how to find my blog

I use sitemeter to monitor the traffic to my blog. One of the coolest features of the statistics it gives is that it shows how visitors found your page. Initially a ton of my traffic was from the link I had on boing boing (see my post about it here). Nowadays though, I am getting most of my traffic from random Google searches.

These are kind of funny so I figured I would post 'em on here:

It's kind of hilarious. It just shows how varied and random my blog really is.

On a side note, sitemeter also thinks that the majority of the visitors click on the "funny" label over all the other labels. I will try to make more funny posts, as that is what you all want!


20 days later...

I am surprised to discover that a mere 20 days have passed since I blogged last. It truly feels like an eternity. So many things have happened this month which have kept me running around like a teenager (ha ha, I am still only 19 after all). A few highlights of the last month;
  1. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows. read it, loved it, will certainly review it here soon.
  2. Friday July 13th; got a job, got a job interview, got promoted at my current job. Very lucky day for me.
  3. Monday July 30th; got fired from my job for sexual harassment. Accidentally brushing a lesbian's ass in passing is a fireable offense it seems. This happened a mere day before I was supposed to start training to be a server. Life is not without irony it seems.
  4. Saturday July 7th; My insurance gets canceled.
  5. Friday July 27th; I find out my insurance is canceled, about 3 days before I need to refill my Lexapro prescription.
  6. My internet has been working (before today) about 25% or less of the time.
  7. I downloaded a virus on my computer
  8. My fiancee got the beginnings of pneumonia and a massive bacterial infection.
  9. I cleaned my car
  10. I went fishing twice
  11. Tried to appeal for independent financial status so I can go to school, and was told that my reason was not valid and the government doesn't care.
  12. Discovered that even two classes at the ridiculously cheap community college here will cost me 600$ plus books.
  13. When I had free schooling in high school I dropped out and now that I want to go to school I cannot afford it.
  14. I don't have a job (looking for help?)
  15. Had to pay 78 USD for a shiny sticker to put on my license plate.
  16. Got about 100 USD refunded from my bank for over draft fees. (yes!)

So yeah, that is a brief overview of the last 20 days.

Aren't you glad you're not me?

Read Harry Potter.


Get Educated


Summer sucks

Summer Is Gross.

I hate being sweaty and sticky.

Hot is miserable.

I used to live in Arizona (currently in Illinois). It was not nearly as gross there for some reason. Sigh.

Humans are soft and weak. It's 87 degrees and I am all bitch-y and moan-y. It's probably 130 in Iraq.

but now i must dash off to mi madre's to do my laundry!

Ta ta


Reasons why NOT to be a hostess

So, I am a hostess at a big chain restaurant here in my town. It is my second hosting job, even though after my first I swore I would never host again (i took my current hosting position because they told me if I did good at the door they would let me serve... two months ago).

That being said, here is advice (warnings) for anyone considering this line of work;

Reasons why NOT to be a Hostess!
  1. You must smile CONSTANTLY!
  2. you are 'required' to hold the door for every customer
  3. A lot of people have their own ideas about where they are going to sit, the customer is always right, put them wherever they want; but what they don't tell you is that when the server gets double sat or skipped (because the fourth customer in a row doesn't want to sit next to a party of 10), you get yelled at for skipping/double seating them like you did it on purpose to ruin their night.
  4. The money sucks. (no matter how busy the restaurant is, you will not make shit for money, the sooner you accept this the better.)
  5. It's 60 degrees in your restaurant and EVERY table wants to sit outside (75 degrees) and there is only one patio server. (see number 3)
  6. Clean the bathroom periodically. (because you don't have enough to do already)
Those first five are typical for every hosting job anywhere. These next are specific to my current position and REALLY SUCK;

7. You are responsible for rolling silverware. (I was at work 1 hour and 50 minutes after we closed at 10pm rolling silverware last night)
8. You must make sure the kitchen knows how many tables there have menus on them. (so seat every customer, stay on top of sorting and rolling silverware, smile, and count menus every 10 minutes, for barely a living wage)
9. When you seat a table; tell them a) the soup of the day, b) the drink feature and c) their server's name; which is different every night (yes, even when there are 6 tables waiting to be sat).

It is safe to say that servers underestimate the amount of responsibility that hosting entails. I've seen a server try to do for one night what i do every night, and refuse to host again. At my current job, we lose hosts left and right. Which means that it will be ages before I can move up to a Server position (and actually make money).


Medicine makes me drowsy

So someone asked me to update on my success and failures with Lexapro which is an anti-depressant and anti-anxiety medication. I kind of wanted to wait to post anything until the drug has had it's say, which usually takes 2-3 weeks. I have, however, noticed a particular side-effect that is annoying. Really annoying. Drowsiness. I'm serious, about 2 hours after I take it, for about 4 or 5 hours I can't stop yawning. It's ridiculous. I take the pills around noon, (which is MY morning) and then when I'm going to work between 4 and 5 I am yawning at all of the customers. It's really lame. The yawning makes my eye's fill with tears and my nose drip too, which is really inconvenient as well, because I don't have a desk with kleenix on it. I work with the public in food service and cannot possibly be wiping my nose all the time. After a bit the yawning subsides and I am able to stay awake until 2 or 3am. If this side-effect doesn't go away in a week or so, I will have to start all over with something different. Fun.


i phone, wii, the future of technology

So I have been seeing a lot of hype about apples new iphone which seems to be revolutionizing smart phones. It can anticipate what you're trying to type which minimizes errors on the touch screen, it's selling like hot cakes and it's got the letter 'i' attached to it. There are a couple of marketing hooks I have noticed that no matter what they're applied to, they will increase sales. One of these is the color pink. Examples include the Zune, RAZR, ipod NANO, Kodak camera, and Nintedo DS Lite. The other is adding 'i' to it. Apple has been throwing their copyrighted letter all over the place. So now everything has an i attached to it or it comes in pink. Even Nintendo's new and super popular Wii has an i. It has 2!!! No wonder it is selling so well. It is just unusual that America is so caught up by two random marketing strategies that even a kindergartener would understand. Color, Letter. I admit, I like my pink RAZR, mostly because it is pink, and I like the pink case I have for my sansa. I also use igoogle over my yahoo. I must have fallen prey to the marketing ploys of corporate America. Shame on me

Making time to blog

Well I just started playing Diablo 2 and I am a little addicted right now! It is really fun and fairly straight-lined game play which I like. I refuse point-blank to begin playing World of Warcrack... um.. that is World of Warcraft I mean, sure I considered jumping on the MMORPG bandwagon, but seriously, how much of my life to I want sucked away by a stupid game?!? There are 6 million people who play WOW and 70% of the people I know play regularly. Diablo 2 is like the gateway into warcraft, it's less time consuming, easier by far, but still has enough game-play variety to foreshadow what one can expect from games like WOW. Diablo is to WOW like pot is to crack. I'm not saying I am going to be diving right into WOW when I lose interest in Diablo 2, but at least by playing Diablo 2 now if I ever do decide to cave to the peer pressure to play WOW, I will be better prepared.

As I am standing on the threshold of Geek, so too am I on the threshold of Gamer. I LARP (live action role playing), I play a Dungeons & Dragons table-top game, and now I play Diablo 2. I'm not hardcore by any stretch of the imagination, but I am diversified and expanding my skills in the gaming world. I am becoming a gamer because I like hanging out with gamers. Similarly I don't party because I don't like hanging out with 'partyers.' But to be able to carry on a conversation with a gamer you have to know the jargon. I tried to find a good site with all the jargon Gamers use (especially the cross-over types I kick it with who play MMORPGs, LARP, card, dice, etc.) which all have separate but similar jargon, if anyone knows a good resource for a broad umbrella of gamer jargon, please let me know... So to learn the jargon and understand the conversations, one must immerse themselves into the games. It is a fascinating sub-culture.

More important than blogging or gaming is real life. Jobs, boyfriends, social lives, family and your health should all come before blogging and gaming, but it is really easy to get caught up and forget to prioritize. Gamers frequently lose jobs and girlfriends because there life IS the game. It is a dangerous hobby that can easily overwhelm. The risk makes it all the more fun though. :)


The miracles of Life, Earthbound and Pharmaceuticals

The last 36 hours have been some of the most amazing of my life.

1. My blog was linked on boing boing

2. My best friend's boyfriend called me up to tell me that he got me a copy of EARTHBOUND! One of the rarest and most fantastic SNES RPG ever, and also a huge part of my childhood as I played it frequently for 8 years. I once owned two copies of the game, but my mom gave them away without thinking, but now I have it again and I am so stoked!!! I don't even have a SNES.

3. I got called at 12am this morning to be with my friend while she had her baby. I have never known anyone well enough who's had a baby yet so this was the first one I was there for. I was incredibly honored to be allowed to watch and film the baby's birth for them. It was the most inspiring and beautiful thing I have ever seen. I was holding the camera and tears were just streaming down my face when the baby came out. I was overwhelmed. It was awesome. I will never forget that.

4. I had a doctor's appointment this afternoon for the first time in about 5 years. I was prescribed Lexapro, an anti-depressant/anti-anxiety medication. I have been living on a "sub-function" level for sometime and I look forward to feeling better. I'm aprehensive though as there are a lot of "cons" associated with anti-depressants. I will likely blog about my experience with pharmaceuticals.

SO there are the awesome things I experienced in the last 36 hours.


Don't Play It Safe!

First I must say it has been a random week here in my little bloggy world

Second I have ALMOST gone a week without doing this:

13. if you havent written about sex, religion, and politics in a week youre probably playing it too safe, which means you probably fucked up on #5, in which case start a second blog and keep your big mouth shut about it this time.
From: How to Blog by Tony Pierce
So without further ado here is me blogging about sex, religion, and politics. It's kind of a weird time to do this, because there are SO MANY PEOPLE here right now, but it's weird in a good and coincidental kind of way.

1. Sex: I cannot understand why not blogging about sex is playing it safe when you have nothing whatsoever to say about sex. I'm not having any, I could be, but I'm not. I guess in a sense my not having sex is 'playing it safe' too. American society is sex-obsessed, and let me tell you, being the (seemingly) only person who is NOT obsessed with sex, is not exactly peachy. Sex is overrated. Intimacy is not, but the actual act of sex, being 'sexy' and advertising sex in the media are all grossly unimportant in comparison to the climate crisis or the children who died today in Africa. We really DO have better things to talk about and obsess about.

2. Religion: I believe in God, I am not Christian, Muslim, or Jewish. I don't believe in hell, or that Jesus was the son of God. I also believe in The Goddess. Mother Earth, Gaia, etc. I am not wiccan. I have to ask this; why can't that be accepted?

3. Politics: I don't like Bush. Finally after almost 8 years I feel like that opinion is in the vast majority. I saw Barack Obama announce his candidacy for presidency in Springfield IL on 2-10-07. He was the most inspiring person I have ever heard (there are probably more inspiring people in the world, I just haven't heard them). I truly believe he is the person that can bring America to where it wants to be for the future and for our children.

Ok, there, I have officially left myself open to hundreds of people i don't know. I am no longer 'playing it safe.'

The most interesting thing about all of this is that: I don't spend my time thinking about Sex, Religion or Politics, I don't watch the news (or the daily show), I don't even have Cable TV. I don't attend church, and the Obama announcement was the first political event I have been to in my life.

Freaking OUT right now.

Oh man, I cannot believe it! You can't believe it. I bet you, reading this right now, were led here by and his Boing Boing Article about his new book Rule the Web! I have never been so honored. It proves true that the MOST IMPORTANT thing about blogging is link to everyone you can because someday they might return the favor. Even if you have 2 readers. Just Link. I'm still kind of in shock. I've been blogging for a week. My blog was on Boing Boing!!

Ok take a deep breath.... now blog.

It is really proof of how amazing the web really is. I didn't tell Mark I linked to him, I didn't ask him to link back, I just did it because it's the right thing to do. He can track who links to his blog, and in turn link them. I just picked up his book because I am a budding geek and really wanted to learn everything I can about the web and all of the amazing things it can do. If you have a well-established blog, or are a geek and have been for a while I bet you can remember a time in your youth when you discovered what the internet was, and when you realized what it meant for you, remember when you transitioned from a non-specific outcast to a Geek. whether you were 10 or 30, you likely remember this turning point in your life. I feel like I am there right now. It is just so amazing.

If you are where I am right now then I highly recommend Mark's book; It is everything you need to graduate from novice to apprentice or even from apprentice geek to journeyman geek: geek in your own right.

Thanks to everyone who has commented and I really hope my blog entertains and inspires you.

Most especially thank you Mark for linking my blog.

Dice of Doom

So, today I got to dig through about 500 miscellaneous dice at a gaming store. Every color and design imaginable and all kinds of numbers. Here's a list of what i got!

  • two d6 (six-sided die) that are red w/white and yellow w/ black pips but what makes them extraordinary is that instead of six they have a star! I heart stars, they're awesome
  • 3 d6 that are a swirly metallic bluey purple with silver numbers
  • 3 d6 that are a swirly blue metallic with silver numbers
  • 3 d6 that are swirly teal metallic with silver numbers
  • one d8 that I bought to be the 'life' of my D&D Druid. it's cloudy, swirly metallic blue/green/black with silver numbers
  • This cosmic D4 that isblue/purple/red/orange/black swirly with silver numbers
  • lastly a very nondescript d20 which is white (ish) with black numbers, but what makes this one stand out is that it has an unusually high roll average. It's just impeccably lucky i think.
So there you have it, I confess, I am a geek and a gamer. I get all excited about dice and vampires. It's just fun and i wanted to blog about it.


A list and a video!

I dig Lists. They are the quintessential tool for thought organization, and yet they have this organic quality that gives each list a unique feeling. They're far more flexible then most other forms of organization and they are the most paper/thought efficient which makes them good for the environment (saving paper!). So here is a list for you.

Music Videos Worth Watching on You Tube
(unless you have dial-up in which case you must not attempt to watch anything remotely video like and promptly call your local Broadband provider to get High-Speed Internet.)

Well that's my list. It's quite eclectic and interesting. If I find more I will let you know!

And Now just for the hilarity of it;

:) rotflol!


We now return you to your regularly scheduled blog!

Blogs I Like and Why:
a compendium of neat blogs that I have discovered in the past.

1. Ooh Shiny - This is a blog that updates frequently and is a bunch of random but always neat and unique things. Usually they have some aesthetic value and they're all linked to the website you can buy them at. A great way to discover new places to spend money!

2. Offbeat Bride - I am getting married some time in the near (ish) future and found this book and the accompanying website to be both relieving and helpful for the wedding process but done so untraditionally and so 'offbeat' that it primarily serves to remind me that I don't have to conform to all of the wedding 'musts' that society has tried to force down my neck. If you have ever been to a 'cookie-cutter' wedding and felt like it was really missing some flavor, then please check out the book and blog.

3. Things Look Like Things - This is a beautiful blog that is all about perspective and common threads. You have to see it to understand why I love it so much.

4. One Red Paperclip - this blog is inspiring and unique. It's an experiment designed to overcome the restrictions of capitalism and cost and emphasizes the importance of personal value.

5. Hungry For A Month - This is a blog about success and hunger. Cost and value. How many calories can a dollar buy you and can you really survive THANKSGIVING without gorging!?! This blog has the answers. It chronicle's an experiment where a man budgets only 30 dollars for food for the month of November. He can only spend that much and can only eat free food if it would be readily available to everyone. A must read!

These are the blogs I'm crazy about right now... There will be more in the future I am sure, but these really stood out from the crowd and I thought I would share them.

I discovered most of these blogs from stumble upon which is the best web surfing tool on the internet. It is a tool bar that you specify your interests and then just click, and 'stumble' onto a random website within your scope of chosen interests. It is fantastic. There is also a 'channel' that will send you to random sites on your favorite website like myspace, blogger, flikr etc.

Also here, for no reason at all is an awesome picture.

from HERE on FLIKR


We Interrupt this blog for kitty hilarity!

[for kitten pictures see bottom of this post; funny stuff 1st, cuteness later]

Last night we hooked up our new(ish) DVD player to our very old console TV that sits on the floor. It has a screen saver that bounces around the screen and changes color when the movie is paused. Well last night while our movie was paused, my cat, Whisper, became curious about the mysterious yet patterned movement on the screen. He simply sniffed it once then proceeded to keep a close eye on it's activity from a distance. (he's the more cautious type) Then my other cat, Mouse, decided it looked interesting as well and went to do his own investigating. He decided that he could easily catch whatever was 'crawling' on the screen and leaped at the screen and tried to nab the screen saver. But did the glass hinder this young and adventurous cat? Oh no, he continued his failing attempts at catching said screen saver for about 15 wildly entertaining minutes which my fiancee and I found to be as entertaining as the movie if not more.

For any who is interested; here are a few choice cat pics. Mouse is the tuxedo and Whisper is the long haired black.
mouse with an easter bunny/lamb

Whisper always finds the best spot!

Mouse, Probably planning how to best kill whisper! [it's his favorite game!!!]

Yay for kitties!


Things Idiots Do

This post is especially about idiots. I am not an idiot; I try not to associate with people I know to be idiots. The notable exception to this rule is when I am working. I work at two jobs; the first is as a bookseller and barista at the big-name bookstore in my area, the other is at a corporate restaurant as a hostess. Hosting doesn't give me much interaction with people for them to show their true idiocy, but cashiering (as anyone who has done it can attest to) is chock full of idiot encounters.

Here is a list of stupid things idiots do:
1. Signing the magnetic strip on the credit card as opposed to the signature strip below the magnetic one.

2. Leaving wallets in vehicles.

3. Stand in line and wait while your 4 children are running around the store so that when it is your turn you have to make everyone else wait while you gather them to get their books.

4. Writing checks. I know checks are important for some things, but when it's mothers day weekend and there are 25 people behind you, pull out the plastic for god's sake. It is a retail fact that it takes 5 times longer to write a check then to use a debit card.

That's all that are jumping immediately to mind; there are more though I promise. I will try to finish the list tomorrow. Also I believe I will be working the evening of the 7th Harry Potter book's release and will most certainly have a multitude of anecdotes and idiot-lists then!

What my blog is about.

One of my comments recently [which I am astonished that I have comments this early] asked what my blog is going to be about.

I have given this a lot of thought and there are a lot of blog ideas I have been kicking around for this blog. Some are very specific and some are very broad but most of the ideas would bore me after maybe 5 or 6 posts. For example, I thought I would blog about all of the hilarious things that happen to me while working in retail, all the most hilarious t-shirts I can find, book reviews, the cute things my cats do, my struggles with depression and ADD (attention deficit disorder) , or my political and economical opinions about the world in which I live. This myriad of topics and ideas all appeal to me for different reasons and there are many more that similarly appeal to me also. There will also be a few rants about the failings of the world I live in because they are many and I cannot just rant through my life about them.

My blog is going to be 'the world according to me with humor and entertainment mixed until crispy' because who doesn't like humor and crispies? It is going to be a melting pot for all of the things I mentioned above and more, because I am ADD and I would get really bored really quickly if I only blogged about one thing.

The most important thing my blog will be is interesting, because there is nothing worse than an uninteresting blog.

So thank you to all of you who've checked my blog out here and I hope you keep returning to see what the day's flavor of crispy is.

Google wins in 9 out of 10 categories!

So I explored a bit of advice from the book mentioned below, and decided to check out just how much better Google is than Yahoo (as I am using blogger and have a gmail account already). I discovered that all of my Yahoo e-mail's can be sent to my gmailbox. Also that Google reader far surpassed my mail beta client for RSS feeds. Got back to my "igoogle" which had been dormant for a while.

I'm slightly disappointed in google on this though; I mean come on.... IGOOGLE!?! can we be more trendy and cliche? (ipod, itunes, imac, ibook MAC MAC MAC) I suppose they were having copyright issues with using 'my'google, but they could have spent more time coming up with something creative like yoogle! I must applaud google for jumping onto the 'i' bandwagon. They even used the lowercase i! They could have been IGoogle but NOOO they had to add insult to injury by using a lowercase i! Grr.

In other news: Well, there actually is no other news.


A first step and something of a roadmap

A couple of things inspired this blog.

The first of which was a book; Rule The Web by Mark Frauenfelder. I was inspired by his book to do more with the time I waste on this computer then stumbling forever through the endless abyss that is cyberspace. A lot of what he wrote about was things I was already doing: using firefox, good emailing, flash games, music sharing etc., but the one thing I didn't really have a grip on yet was a good and true blog.

As the book inspired me to learn how to publish my words here on the wide and wonderful web I immediately Googled "how to blog" and found how to blog by tony pierce, 110. It is an incredible resource for anyone who is a bit overwhelmed by the idea of blogging.

So here are the guidelines I am adapting from his site for my blog.

1. don't let people you know read your blog.

2. Write all the time

3. Be open, forthright, and honest. Be true to yourself

4. Link blogs

5. Lose all apprehension.

Every journey begins with the first step; a fitting cliche because this is my first step and I have no idea where I am going to end up.

So there it is. The beginnings of what may suck, or may thrive but no matter what it is mine.