Monday, December 21, 2009

Christmas Music

Here in Utah, we have two radio stations that play Christmas music exclusively at this time of year. They’re big competitors, and they’re always trying to get the jump on the other. When they started, FM100 was playing 100 hours of Christmas music (therefore starting about 4 days before Christmas). Then 106.5 decided to get in on the game and started earlier. As they continually try to “one-up” each other, the date continually moves up. This year, they started before Halloween. Next year, they’re going to start around Labor Day.

As I’ve listened to the holiday cheer, I’ve noticed that Christmas songs seem to fall into roughly four categories for me. Though some can be put in more than one category, there are a few clear lines.

First, there are the traditional, “classic” songs. You know, White Christmas, Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas, Joy to the World, Deck the Halls, Oh Holy Night, etc. The good stuff. The ones that every artist has to sing. The ones that I can still imagine being played on a record player.

Second, there are the classic songs that have nothing to do with Christmas. Winter Wonderland, Sleigh Ride, Jingle Bells, Frosty the Snowman, Let it Snow. They’re fun songs, but they’re actually songs about winter in general. So, why don’t we hear them in January? My January could use a little cheering up with “Winter Carols.” And while we’re talking about Christmas songs that aren’t really Christmas songs, what’s up with playing “Favorite Things” at Christmas? I mean, it came from the Sound of Music. Do they even have a winter scene in that show? Wikipedia notes the following: “The wintertime imagery of some of the lyrics has made ‘My Favorite Things’ a popular song during the Christmas season … although in the show and movie it is sung during a summer thunderstorm.” Uh-huh. A summer thunderstorm. Can’t think of anything more Christmas-y than that!

Third, there are the Santa songs. Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer, Up on the Housetop, Santa Claus is Coming to Town, Here Comes Santa Claus, Jolly Old St Nicholas, Santa Baby. Again, fun songs that deal only with the commercialization of Christmas, avoiding the “reason for the season.” These are the ones that kids are still allowed to sing in public schools.

Then there are the new songs. Ah the new songs. While there are some that I enjoy (generally the ones by BNL), most of them drive me crazy. Christmas Shoes; Do they Know it’s Christmas?; So This is Christmas; Grownup Christmas List; Last Christmas. I don’t know why, but these songs just grate on my nerves. Maybe it’s because they’re played all too often on the radio at this time of year. Maybe it’s because I have no memory linking them to wonderful Christmases in the past.

Or maybe it’s just because they’re stupid songs.

For example: “Do They Know it’s Christmas?” This is a song that focuses on those less fortunate than us, specifically those in Africa. While I appreciate the sentiment and the charge to “feed the world,” I find it humorous that the song points out that “there won’t be snow in Africa this Christmas.” Well, duh! When was the last time they had snow in Africa? And why on earth is it a bad thing that they’re not getting any this year? I mean, really, have the writers of this song ever been in snow? Would you really want to wish it on a people who are in no way prepared to handle it?

Wanna know what’s on my Grownup Christmas List? An ITunes card, some clothes, jewelry, books.

And of course, World Peace.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Good Times

I've been thinking a lot lately about little memories I have from my childhood. Just random things that have nothing to do with anything, but that make me smile when I remember them. I thought I would share some of them here.

There was the time that I typed a paper on my brother's computer. It was the first time I'd ever used a computer, and I hit "return" at the end of every line, like you would with a typewriter (yes, I'm that old). Brian had to teach me that the computer wraps the words itself. Then he fixed my paper for me. I wonder how long it took him to go and backspace all of those "returns" out of there. Hey - thanks, Brian!

Once, when I was a teenager, we performed a tricky Chinese Fire Drill in Rose Park. (For those of you who don't know what that is, it involves getting out of a car, running around it, and getting back in before a red light turns green. The more people involved, the better. In a two-door car with five people, it can definitely be tricky.) During this particular drill, one of my brothers nearly lost his shoe as he got back in. Ever wonder how that one shoe got in the middle of the road?

When I was growing up, there was a spot in our side yard where our parents allowed us to dig and play in the mud all we wanted. There was a slight incline, and we would make rivers and roads and bridges and tunnels in the mud, and then we'd put the hose at the top of the hill and turn it on, so that the rivers would fill. We always loved it when one of the dams broke, because we could get away with "swearing." (Dam it! Dam it!)

I remember spending hours on our swingset out back, pumping as high as I could and singing "Let's Go Fly a Kite" at the top of my lungs. Bet the neighbors loved that one. That swingset was also the site of some major competitions (who could jump off and get the farthest without taking a trip to the hospital, for instance). The set had a slide on it, and I remember one time we put a kiddie pool at the bottom and a hose at the top to make our own waterslide. If I remember right, it didn't work out so well. (I know - shocker!)

I have memories of getting up out of bed for one reason or another and finding my parents sitting on the front porch, enjoying the cool evening air and chatting together. Depending on my reason for getting up, they would either tell me to get back to bed, or they would let me sit on one of their laps for a while. It was so peaceful.

...makes me want to be a kid again...

Tuesday, November 10, 2009


I got stuck driving behind a student driver the other night. Since I had plenty of time to think (going 20mph in a 45 zone), I began to consider all the things that we aren't taught in Driver's Ed.

For instance, everyone learns (eventually) that when you are at a red light, it's important to watch the car in front of you. If they roll a couple of inches forward, you must immediately follow suit. If you don't, you risk getting honked at by the person behind you, who saw the movement and can't figure out why you're not trying to get closer to the line. After all, that extra inch and a half may make the difference between making the green light and having to sit through another red one.

Try it sometime. Next time you're sitting at a red light, inch forward a little and then watch the cars behind you. Or better yet, try to stop yourself from moving when the car in front of you rolls. It's goes against all instinct.

Apparently there's an unwritten rule in some areas (I've noticed it in the Midwest) that you must stop at least one car-length behind the white line. I don't really understand this, but there must be a reason. Maybe the pedestrians there tend to break into dance halfway across the street and need the extra room...

My favorite unwritten rule about driving pertains to the "fast lane." This is, of course, the furthest left normal lane on a freeway. (In Driver's Ed, they call it the "Passing Lane," but once you're out of class, you immediately learn that's a misnomer). Because it is the Fast Lane, you automatically have the right to get upset with (and flash your lights, yell and make obscene gestures at) the person in front of you, who is only going 15 miles over the speed limit, when you wanted to do 20 over.

They teach you in class what to do if a stoplight goes out, or is flashing red. We all know that we're supposed to treat it like a four-way stop. What they don't tell you is that at least half the population doesn't know how to work a four-way stop. So good luck with that one.

We are also taught that a turn signal indicates that you'd like to get into a different lane. This only works in some states. Not in Utah. Here in Utah, a turn signal indicates that you would like the car in the next lane to speed up and then match your speed, thereby making it impossible for you to get into the lane in time to make your turn. We work on aggression here in Utah. You have to really want to get over. Forget the signal, and just start forcing your way in.

When they honk at you, they're really just telling you how much they admire your driving skills.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

TV Geeks

A lot of roommates have fights over who gets the remote. Not my cousin and I. When I come in the room, she automatically gives me the remote. This is for two main reasons.

First, I’m deaf. I inevitably have to turn up the volume when I come in. Although I have to say, I’m not so sure it’s that I’m deaf. I think it’s just that Christina has the hearing of…well, something that has really good hearing. Or maybe she just isn’t as anal as I am about hearing every tiny detail. I don’t know.

The second reason is because I’m really good at skipping certain things on the DVR. For instance, on So You Think You Can Dance, I’m really good at fast forwarding through all of Mary Murphy’s comments. Holy cow, that woman’s got an annoying voice!

Luckily, we both enjoy the same types of shows and movies. We love having our DVR, so that we can fast forward through all the commercials on our favorite shows. We record at least one show every night. We’re also big fans of TV on DVD. We have an entire bookshelf dedicated to our collections.

We’re TV geeks.

Monday, August 3, 2009


Woohoo! Day Two, Post Two! I'll be waiting for your comment, Meghan!

I worked from home today because I was sick, which means I have a lot of random thoughts going through my head (why one leads to the other, I couldn't tell you... but I'm feeling random, so it works).

First of all, I'm pretty sure I got more done today than I do when I'm actually at work. Apparently watching What Not to Wear and a couple of movies is actually a great way to increase productivity. Or maybe it's because I had a window today. Or because I was lying on the couch. Of course, I'll probably get to work tomorrow and realize I didn't get done as much as I think I did...

You know what cracks me up? When people tell you that you shouldn't have the same password for everything. Not that it doesn't make sense. Really, it does. If someone cracks your password, and you have the same password for everything, then suddenly your entire life is laid out before them. But it's not realistic. Everything, and I mean everything requires a password these days. I have a list of my passwords, and it's over 60 items long. And there are probably ones I've set up that I didn't put on my list. (Okay, so I probably no longer need the password to pay the bill for the gym I used to go to - you know, the one that no longer exists in Utah - but I mean, you never know when you're gonna need it again.)

We need to clean out our fridge. There's some stuff in there that would grace the tables of a science fair. How does that happen? And why did we buy it in the first place? We both knew we weren't going to eat that salad stuff. Wishful thinking? Or were we trying to impress each other? Hmm...

Why is it that when someone yawns, we automatically assume they're bored? I mean, last time I checked, a yawn indicates either a lack of sleep or a lack of oxygen (depending on who you ask, I guess...). It has nothing to do with lack of excitement. So if I ever yawn when listening to you, get over it. I never go to bed before midnight; it's inevitable that I'm going to yawn several times a day.

And why is it that when you hear the word "yawn" it makes you want to yawn? I can't even read the word "yawn" without the desire to, well, yawn. Hence, I am now yawning. And chances are, you are too...

Sunday, August 2, 2009


Okay, this is it. This is the week. The week when I blog every day. I can feel it. Really, I can. Every day. How hard can that be really? I mean, interesting things happen to me every day, right?

Yeah, not so much.

But, everyone keeps telling me that I need to blog, and I agree. I mean, it's been more than a month. And that's just wrong.

I've had good intentions, I promise. I even took pictures on the Fourth of July so that I could make fun of my brothers and dad and how intricately designed they make their fireworks show (it was actually really cool). But I never got around to emailing them to myself. And then, on the 24th, I was the one up there with Joseph planning out our show, so I couldn't take pictures then.

(It was a blast, by the way. Bunch of pyromaniacs, I know...)

So, there you go. My first blog of seven this week.

Of course, on Friday, we're all headed to Wisconsin for a Bruner Family Extravaganza, so I guess the "every day this week" will depend on whether or not we have internet access in our hotels (you'd think I would have checked that out when I booked them...). But at least I'll have all kinds of interesting things to blog about next week!

Sunday, June 28, 2009


For several months now, Emily and Jason have planned to take Ezri to Disneyland for her 4th birthday. Ezri was very, very excited. They invited me and Christina to go as well.

Whenever we asked Ezri when we were going to Disneyland, she would say, "Tomorrow." I'm pretty sure that "tomorrow" means any day in the future for her. She was beside herself when it really was time to go!

We left Friday morning and drove eleven hours to Anaheim. The kids did very well, and slept a little bit.
Saturday was our first day in the park, as well as Ezri's actual birthday. Christina bought her a princess dress, which she absolutely loved (she thought she'd have to give it back and was very happy when we told her she could take it home with her). I treated her to lunch with all the princesses at Ariel's Grotto. Ariel greeted us as we came in, and then the other princesses (Snow White, Belle, Sleeping Beauty and Cinderella) came around to everyone's table to talk and take pictures. Ezri was absolutely beside herself, especially when Sleeping Beauty (her favorite princess) came to talk to her. She giggled and grinned for about fifteen minutes after that visit!Besides the princess lunch, the Tea Cups were her favorite part of the park. She would have gone on them all day, if she'd been with adults who could have handled that much spinning. She also got to meet Mickey, and we saw Minnie from afar (she says that she wants to meet Minnie next time).
Riker's favorite ride was the carousel. He loved that nobody had to hold onto him and would laugh the whole time. He'd also spend time gazing up at the mechanism as if he were trying to figure out how the thing worked.
On the second day, we went to Disney's California Adventure, where they have an area just for little kids. It was a hot day, so we let the kids play in the water - shoes and all! They absolutely loved it!
After more time in the park on Monday, we left Anaheim at about 3pm and drove all night. The kids tried to sleep, but it was difficult for them. In fact, it was rough on all of us. We got fairly loopy and laughed a lot, but I wouldn't recommend it. We decided that next time, we would stay in Anaheim till the next day and just drive home then...
In all, it was a very fun trip, and Ezri talks about it every day. I asked her yesterday if we should go back. She thought for a moment, and then said. "No. Let's go tomorrow."

Thanks, Emily and Jason, for such a wonderful time!!

Monday, June 8, 2009

Snail Hunting

Okay, so Emma can tease me all she wants after my two-month hiatus from blogging. I could give a million excuses, but nobody wants to hear them, so on to blogging!

I had to post some pictures of good times with Joseph's kids. We went Snail Hunting (which is oh so much more fun than Snipe Hunting...).

This is Alex, looking for snails in the wall under the bushes. She reminds me a little of myself when I was young - out looking for worms and snails and bugs right alongside my brothers.

And then, because snails are the bane of my parents' entire yard, we took it to the next level...


And here is the aftermath... Hungry, anyone?

So, there you go. I'll probably hear it from the Society for Snail Safety, but at least I've upped my status to coolest aunt ever. Incidentally, Grandma let them use her salt shaker, so she's pretty darn cool, too...

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Pet Peeves

We all have them. Those little things that drive us crazy, no matter how stupid they are. We call them pet peeves. Which is an interesting name. I just looked it up, interested to see where it came from. Peeve is actually an American word. Go figure. We're American. Things annoy us. It was back-formed from "peevish," which is from Middle English, and it was first used around 1910. How on earth could they know that?!

I could point out several more things about the origins of the phrase, but I shall resist the temptation. Hopefully people divulging useless information is nobody's pet peeve...

At any rate, I was on some website the other day (I don't remember which one). The soul purpose of this particular webpage is to log in to the website. There's nothing else you can do on the page, except maybe link back to a home page. And yet, when you get there, the cursor doesn't automatically show up in the username field. Now, I'm no web designer, but it seems to me that it can't be that hard to make the cursor go where it needs to go. Everyone else does it. Instead, I have to actually click on the field. I know - the horror, right? Probably doesn't bother most people. But it drives me crazy.

That made me think of some of my other pet peeves. Things like people who don't use their turn signal, and then get upset when you don't let them into your lane. Because I'm supposed to read your mind? Or were you signaling by letting your car drift dangerously close to mine? Because I thought that was just because you were texting your friends while you were driving.

I suppose I should pay more attention to the unstated intentions of others.

Of course, there are plenty of pet peeves to be discussed when it come to driving (cough, tailgating, cough). Let's face it. We always consider ourselves the best driver on the road. Anything happens, and it's automatically someone else's fault. Don't lie - you know you feel that way. At any rate, I'm going to leave the realm of bad driving at that...

Another thing that drives me crazy is when somebody interrupts another person who is speaking. It doesn't even have to be me being interrupted - just listening to a conversation when one person consistently interrupts bugs me. I'm not talking about an occasional I'm-too-excited-to-tell-you-what-I'm-thinking-so-I'm-going-to-interrupt-you type of a thing. I'm talking about the persistent interrupters. Apparently anything they have to say is much more important. Than anything else.

I could go on, of course, but I don't want to sound like some peevish, negative person. I leave that to all of you - what are your pet peeves?

Tuesday, April 7, 2009


Wow. Two blogs in as many days. What's wrong with me?!

I have four brothers and a sister, all of whom are married and all of whom have at least two children. Needless to say, I have a few nieces and nephews. The newest little Bruner joined our ranks nearly a month ago. Lucky girl. I finally got some pictures off of my digital camera, and I had to share with the world...

This is Claire Louise at about a day old. Isn't she adorable? Aw.

I couldn't pass up putting this one on here. This is Claire with her cousin Alex, who absolutely loves babies. Alex is almost 6, and she sat and held Claire for at least an hour this last weekend.

Anyway, the biggest perk to being the only single one in the family is that I get to spoil my nieces and nephews and brag about them. Because they're the cutest kids in the world. All seventeen of them.

And I'm not biased at all...

Monday, April 6, 2009


Everyone who knows my dad knows he has a great sense of humor. Very corny, but great nonetheless. The best part, of course, is his laugh. You just can't listen to him laugh and not join in. And, since he tends to laugh at his own jokes, it's very difficult not to laugh, whether the joke is actually funny or not.

My mom is just as hilarious, but her humor is a bit more subtle, so not as many people are aware of it. Recently, she showed just how funny she could be...

First of all, you have to understand that Dad is a bit, well, obsessive-compulsive. Or, as they said in the old days, anal. Have you ever seen the TV show Monk? Yeah. That's Dad.

Anyway, we have an end table by our couch with magazines on it, and every time Dad walked by, he would straighten them, so that they'd look something like this:

Then, as soon as he left the room, my mom would get up and go mess them up again, just to see if he would notice. Then Dad would walk back through the room and straighten them out once more. He never said anything about it.

This went on for about a month, until my mom couldn't take it anymore. She watched him straighten them one more time, and then asked him if he ever got frustrated with them getting messed up. He started to answer, and then he said, "Wait, have you been doing that?!"

At which point he started laughing so hard that it was impossible not to join in.

Thursday, April 2, 2009


You know those life-changing decisions that everyone hates making? Things like should I quit and get a different job? Should I get married to what's-his-name? Should I have ice cream after dinner tonight? You know, the important ones.

Well, I've made an important, life-changing decision lately, and I'm really pretty excited about it.

I'm going to be moving next month. I'll be sharing an apartment with my cousin (we've lived together before, so we know we can do it without killing each other), and we're both ready for this change.

When I was making this decision, several people told me I should buy a house. It wasn't a bad idea, but I decided not to. Since then, I've decided that renting definitely has its perks. First of all, we'll have a pool. That we don't have to take care of. And a hot tub. Ah yeah.

Also, if anything breaks, someone else will fix it for us. Not that I won't try anyway, cause I like to pretend that I'm good at fixing things, but when I can't figure it out, there's always someone to call. Definite perk. And according to people who have lived in this complex before, they're pretty good about fixing things right away. Gotta love that!

There's also the issue of a yard. Not that I wouldn't like the benefits of a yard, but I don't have to take care of one (except maybe my parents, for when I feel like gardening...). We have a playground on the property of our apartment building, for when our nieces and nephews want to visit. We're set!

If anyone wants to see where we'll be moving, you can click here. We'll be in a two-bedroom apartment. It's about a five-minute drive to work, and it's right by a huge shopping center. Booyah!

Saturday, March 21, 2009


I haven't played basketball in a very long time. So when I was asked to referee a youth game this morning, I just laughed. And then, because I had a lapse in good judgment, I agreed.

It was actually pretty fun. I mean, the jokes being thrown at me were pretty good and, well, true. One person said that it was too bad I couldn't make it to the game. Another teased me every time I blew the whistle. Probably because I didn't blow it much. The girls took care of most of the refing for me.

In my defense, I was the only ref for the game. It's really hard to see what's happening on the other side of the court, and I apparently didn't inherit from my mother the ability to see out of the back of my head. Or maybe that's just because I'm not a mother yet.

Truthfully, I was just pretty impressed with myself that I could run that much. Up and down the court. Over and over. For three 6-minute "quarters." Whew! Eighteen minutes. I think I need a nap.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009


My sister-in-law accused me not too long ago about being “as bad as my brother” because I don’t blog as often as I should. I have a good reason for this. Well, okay, I have a reason for it. Probably not a good one.

I love to write, and I like blogging. But I have a tendency to want to “wow” my audience with something spectacular. Therefore, until I have a great idea of something to write about, it tends to remain undone. Not that I neglect it. I write about once a week. My sister-in-law just happens to blog approximately three times a day.

Anyway, I was at the gym yesterday (which is pretty newsworthy in and of itself), watching the news on the TVs they have set up for the cardio machines. Or, more accurately, trying to avoid watching the news on the TVs they have set up for the cardio machines. I’m not a big fan of the news. Especially at the gym. I’m sweating and I’m in pain, and you want me to watch commercials about food, interspersed with depressing news about how the world has gone to seed? Come on, people! Give me something that’s going to keep my mind off of my aching muscles!

There are seven or eight TV’s in front of the cardio machines, and they are all inevitably turned to the news. Because apparently when you’re working out, you need to know what every single station considers newsworthy. Doesn’t seem like it should be that big of a deal to change one of them to a TV show or a cable channel, but they rarely do.

It was for this reason that I wanted an IPod, so that I could download audio books and ignore the screens in front of me. Thing is, though, you apparently have to sync the books to the IPod. There’s always something.

So I’m stuck watching the news for now.

Without sound and without subtitles.

When it comes to current events, I prefer to get my information from newspaper headlines or from more reliable sources like, you know, my brothers. That way they can sort through all the crap and let me know what’s really important.

At least the weather’s interesting. The best part of watching the weather at the gym is seeing the discrepancies in the forecasts of the different stations. Either it’s going to be cloudy and 45 this weekend, or it’s going to be sunny and over 60.

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Classics - Moby Dick

When I was in high school, we used to say that a novel was a "classic" if it ended badly, or if it's depressing. That's what it always seemed like, judging by the classics they were having us read. If I hadn't grown up loving books, high school would have made me hate reading.

Now that I'm a bit older (just a little bit, of course), I'm reading more and more classics. I've found some that I completely love and others that are worthy of being assigned to high school students.

For instance, high schoolers should have to read Moby Dick. Now there's a classic. It's boring and everybody dies in the end (well, almost everybody).

I've seen a couple of shows lately that had a character whose favorite book was Moby Dick. All I can say is WHATEVER! Give me a break! My apologies to anyone out there that loves the book, but I just don't see it. Maybe if it's an abridged, not even then.

The book has chapter upon chapter about whales - their anatomy, the way you kill them, the reasons that they're fish and not mammals (apparently that was a hot topic in 1850). There's a story in there as well, but it seemed to be about a fourth of the book. Not that I mind informational chapters. Les Miserables had a lot of those, but I enjoyed that one. They were interesting, and they were interspersed amongst the plot, unlike Moby Dick, where the plot was interspersed among the informational chapters.

Yep, it's a good one for high school English. Right up there with the Grapes of Wrath.

Sunday, February 22, 2009


I never get bored any more. Which is kind of nice, I have to say. Some of the reasons are that I'm pretty busy. With work, family, church and friends, there's always someone/something clamoring for my time. You know how they say if you need something done, ask a busy person to do it? That's because you know that they're the ones that can't say "no". I have issues with saying that word. Which is often a problem.

But I digress. Though my busyness keeps me from sitting around at home with nothing to do, I'm saying I don't get bored even in those really boring meetings that we all feel obligated to have. I don't get bored in the car or when I'm standing in a ridiculously long line at the store. I don't get bored when I'm waiting for someone or for something to start. It's really quite nice. I find boredom quite boring.

Ever since I was a kid, I wanted to be a writer. I always had a story going in my head (and sometimes I even actually wrote it down). It wasnt until college, though, that I realized that I always had entertainment when I needed it. I got through many a boring class by writing stories in my head. It takes me about 3 seconds to lose myself in a swordfight or a car chase or, well, a kiss.

This can be a problem sometimes. Such as when a teacher called on me. Or when it's my turn in line, and I don't realize it because I'm in my own little world. It's caused a few embarrassing moments (except that I don't really get embarrassed - see my blog on that). But I don't mind that.

Keeps things in, not boring.

Friday, February 13, 2009

Valentine's Day

Anyone who knows me knows that I've never been a fan of Valentine's Day. Seems to be a holiday focused on couples getting angry because someone forgot it and singles feeling miserable because they don't have anyone to fight with. (I don't know why I think dad's always remembered to get my mom flowers.)

Most people figure that I don't like it because I'm single. Maybe they're right. I don't know. But I think it's because of the candy. It's a time for cheap chocolate and hard sugar. Blech.

The only redeeming factor of the day is that, once it's over, Easter candy comes out. Cadbury. Yum.

Of course, in the past few years, my big brother has made the day more enjoyable for me. He has been sending me flowers every year on Valentine's Day. What an awesome brother. I've included a picture of this year's bouquet - a gorgeous selection of lilies. They smell awesome.

Thanks, Brian. Love ya!

Tuesday, February 10, 2009


I've always hated when someone asks me for my "most embarrassing moment." I think it's a stupid question, for a couple of reasons.

First of all, I have the worst memory in the world. The moment someone asks me to remember something, my mind goes blank. Not conducive to answering such questions.

Second of all, my embarrassing moments are seldom that embarrassing. It's usually a personal irritation, like I spelled something wrong in an important email, or I said something in anger that I would never say when in my right mind. See? Not really anything to get worked up about. And really, when someone asks for your most embarrassing moment, they're looking for a good laugh, right?

Not that I don't have a couple of good stories. But I don't really get embarrassed easily. I'm so clumsy that getting embarrassed about tripping or running into a wall would mean I'd be blushing all day long. I enjoy a joke too much to get embarrassed about one that's told at my expense. It's more fun to laugh instead.

The third reason I don't like the question is this: If it was really the most embarrassing thing I've ever been through, why on earth would I want to share it? So that I could be embarrassed all over again?

Of course, usually people share moments that were embarrassing at the time, and then just funny afterwards. But I wonder how many people have ever told their real most embarrassing moment. You know, the deep, dark secret...that time you did something and you still can't believe you acted that way?

Or maybe that's just me.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009


I love music.

I thought about that today as I drove home from work with my CD player blasting in my car. It's good stuff. Music can change the mood of anything in seconds. I saw a special on TV once where they showed a part of the movie "Jaws" without music and then the same part with music. Not so suspenseful without the music. In fact, it was pretty hokey. Whoa! Big fish! You're gonna need a bigger boat.

Yeah, doesn't really work without John Williams in the background.

My brother used to quiz me in the car when we were listening to the radio. "Who's this?" he would ask every time a new song came on. I dreaded that question. I was usually wrong...when I could actually venture a guess without embarrassing myself too badly. I still don't know most of them, unless they're a song I really like. Then I have about a 50/50 chance of getting it right.

Here's the thing, though. I get songs stuck in my head like crazy. There is always a song in my head. And it's not always a song I like. Not fun at all. I'm pretty sure a person could go certifiably insane because they can't get a song out of their head. This is why I tend to be testy when someone starts singing one of "those" songs. You know, the ones that stick in EVERYONE's heads. Such as the "Song That Never Ends" or "It's a Small World" or...well, I actually don't want to think about any others. I could end up in an insane asylum.

This is also why I tend to listen to more ...uh, shall we say appropriate?... music on Saturdays. Because I know it'll stick with me through Sunday. Nothing like sitting through church with Coldplay in your head.

This is a serious condition. I now have the "Song That Never Ends" in my head. Call the men in the white jackets.

Sunday, January 25, 2009


As I stated in my first blog, I recently got over my blogging aversion and started, well, this blog. Now I'm addicted. I go through possible posts in my head as I get ready for the day, I mention my blog to everyone I know (and some I don't know), and I notice little things during the day that I could maybe write about (most of which I forget by the time I get home). Definitely addicted.

I know Christina, you told me so.

In thinking about this recent addiction, I started to consider other addictions I've dealt with in my life. No, I'm not addicted to alcohol or drugs or cigarettes. But I do tend to get addicted to things. Blogging, scrapbooking, certain books and movies, computer games.

I was analyzing my behavior as I dried my hair this morning. I have often avoided getting involved in certain things for the ostensible reason that I don't like to do what the crowd is doing. The first time I heard about Harry Potter, I didn't want to read it because everyone was reading it. I tell people that it's because I like to be different, I don't like getting caught up in the craze. But in my self-analysis this morning, I admitted to myself that the real reason is because I know instinctively that I'm going to get addicted. I didn't avoid Harry Potter because I didn't want to be a follower. I avoided it because I knew I would become a crazy fan.

I first heard about Harry Potter when the fourth book came out (I'd been out of the country when it had started to become popular). There was a story on the news about people who stood in line for hours, waiting for midnight to strike so that they could buy the book. I thought it was pretty cool, considering that's something that people do for a movie, not for a book. But I also thought 'I'm not going to read those until they all come out and the craze is over.'

Turns out this was a self-preservation instinct. When I ignored the instinct and gave in, I actually took the book to work and read it under my desk because I had to find out what happened. I agonized over the amount of time left before the next one would be published, and I saw the first movie the day it came out. I read them several times, and I was one of those waiting for midnight when the fifth, sixth and seventh books came out. I got into arguments about what was going to happen and I discussed Harry Potter every chance I got. I was addicted.

The pattern repeated itself recently with the Twilight Series by Stephenie Meyer. I distinctly remember finishing Eclipse and immediately starting the whole series over again. I was up until midnight yet again when Breaking Dawn came out (well, later than that, cause then I was reading it), and I'm not going to admit how many times I've seen the movie. Again - addicted.

Of course, I'm doing better now. I no longer dream either about vampires or about Voldemort. I can go weeks at a time without arguing whether Bella should have ended up with Jacob or with Edward (as if there's any contest...Jacob drives me crazy). I don't discuss apparent discrepancies in Harry Potter with anyone who would listen. I haven't actually read a Harry Potter book for several months, and it's been a while since I've read any of the Twilight books. These things usually fade with time.

So I guess I can't really call it an addiction. Apparently, despite all my attempts to the contrary, I'm obsessed.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009


This blog isn't about the weather (I know, surprising!), but I couldn't pass up posting this picture from the University of Utah webcam. This is mostly to make those who are freezing in Wisconsin (and elsewhere) be grateful that at least they're breathing clean air. Usually, you would be able to see the Oquirrh mountains and maybe even a shimmering line of the Great Salt Lake from this view. Those little lines you see through the yellow is the Salt Lake City skyline, which is about two miles away. Yuck!

Anyway, I promised this wouldn't be about the weather, so onto better things.

I've been thinking lately about technology. This is probably because of the fact that I've had a technology explosion in my life lately. In November, I got a laptop to replace my desktop at work. For Christmas, I got an IPod. This month, I finally gave up on my desktop at home and bought a laptop, with a wireless router. My sister got an IPhone for her birthday and gave me her "old" cellphone (one with a keyboard), and today I got rid of my pager at work and got...wait for it...a cellphone

Right now, I'm sitting on the couch, writing this on my new laptop, listening to my new Ipod, and I have both my personal and my work cellphones on the table next to me...just in case.

Makes me wonder if I've gone a little too far....


A couple of people were surprised that I got a laptop when I'd just gotten one from work. After all, why would I need two?

Before I bought my personal laptop, I would do my personal stuff on my personal desktop. The desktop I bought when I graduated from college. Eight years ago. Eight computer years. That's what, three hundred in human years?

In general, I just dealt with the quirks of my ancient computer. I mean, a new computer isn't something that you just go out and buy on a whim. Well, it isn't for me, anyway.

But it was to the point that I would never shut down the poor thing, because when I'd turn it back on, it took about six months to boot up. If I got on the internet, I had to be sure that I didn't close any of the windows I was working in, or it would shut down everything.

And then I got an IPod.

When I discovered that I couldn't download I-Tunes on my aged companion, I decided I needed to put my poor old friend down. It was just inhumane...or continue to make it work.

I reworked my budget and bought a laptop two weeks later. Goodbye, old friend.

Funeral services will be held Saturday, January 24th at 10:00am.

Saturday, January 17, 2009


Whoever said that breathing is highly overrated is strongly mistaken. Wait...has anyone ever said that?

So, I've recovered from my bronchitis, just in time to get another cold. I've been sick going on two months now. Some of my friends think maybe I should talk to a doctor. HA! I say. Doctor, schmoctor! I say. Who needs a doctor?!

Okay, apparently I do.

But it's not as if I haven't talked to anyone about it. I went to a doctor about my bronchitis. He gave me cough medicine and said it would take 3 weeks to get over it and charged me $100 for the visit.

Now I have a cold again. I think. Maybe it's just the end of bronchitis, mixed with the fact that you can practically chew the air, it's so thick with pollution. Maybe it's allergies. I'm allergic to winter.

But it's probably a cold. And everyone knows that there is nothing the doctor can do about a cold.

It's no big deal, really. Better than the bronchitis. Except that I can't breathe. Strangely enough, my body thinks that breathing is important. And since my body is somewhat important to, you know, continuing to live, I guess it's time to call the doctor.

Or maybe I'll just move to Hawaii.

Sunday, January 11, 2009


When I was growing up with my five siblings, we often gathered around the TV and shared in a show or a movie together. I remember several Sunday nights, gathering around for the Wonderful World of Disney. We had our regular shows - the Cosby Show, Knight Rider and MASH reruns, to name a few. Not to mention Saturday morning cartoons. Back when Saturday morning cartoons were cool. (You know, Muppet Babies, The Real Ghostbusters, GI Joe, etc.)

But most of the time, my mom would come in, turn off the TV, and tell us to go play outside. We would usually moan and groan, complaining that there was nothing to do outside, but we were obedient children (because we knew what would happen if we weren't obedient), and headed outside. Of course, we always ended up having fun, but the result was that we often didn't see some of the shows that everyone else was watching.

I remember one time I was on a school fieldtrip and everyone started singing the theme to The Brady Bunch. I had heard of the show and seen it a couple of times, but I couldn't have sung the song if they'd paid me (which of course they wouldn't have). I still couldn't sing the song.

Of course, if someone is willing to pay now, I'd be happy to learn it...

I was embarrassed on that bus ride so many years ago. (Not so much any more - now that I've actually seen the show, I'm actually quite grateful.)

But, as I said, we did have our regulars. To this day, the theme song to MASH makes me hungry - it was on every day at 5, when dinner was being made. My mom loved to watch TV, and she passed that love onto most of her children. Of course, nowadays it doesn't matter if we need to go outside and play (or, you know, go to work). We can just record our shows on a DVR. Or wait for a few months and buy the whole season on DVD. All the joy of watching our show, and no commercials.

Ah, the wonderful world of technology! Allowing us to keep up on the important things, like who got kicked off of Survivor or why Grisham left CSI. You know, the stuff that really matters.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009


As I'm sure many of you did, I made a few resolutions this New Years. One of them was to go to the gym more. I made it there yesterday, and I was prepared to go today. N0 excuses.

But on my way out of the parking lot at work, I broke my car. What an excellent excuse.

The best part is how I broke it. I slid into a curb going maybe 5 miles per hour. Now, I may be way off the mark here, but I was thinking that with all the safety features they put in cars these days, they would have prepared for a 5-mile per hour impact on the tire. I mean really, didn't anyone think of that?

Maybe it's because I run into curbs all the time, and the car's just had it with me. As much as I like to brag about being a good driver, I do tend to cut corners a little too tightly. But I've never broken anything before. Except a few curbside paint jobs.

Admittedly, I don't know yet what's wrong with it. Except that I can no longer turn right. Hardly important, right? I'll just take lefts from now on. Not a big deal.

Except I'm pretty sure I can't get to the gym without a right turn.

Ah well...maybe next year...

Sunday, January 4, 2009


Because I've been sick, I haven't been outside much in the last few days. When I went out today, I nearly froze to death. What's with the below freezing weather?! Let's bring back the blizzards. At least it's warmer when it's snowing.

I was thinking about winter this morning, and about the fact that, despite my hatred of the season, I still live in Utah. Why aren't I living in Arizona? I know some people couldn't take the heat in the summer, but I say, bring it on! (Of course, I've never lived there, so maybe I'd be singing another tune if I did...)

I came up with two reasons why I'm still here (besides the obvious, you know, my job's here, my family's here, blah, blah, blah), and those are:

First, the mountains. You just can't beat living ten minutes from a really good hike. Seriously, you can drive out of the city and be in wilderness within minutes. Nobody else around for miles. Love that.

The second one is that, as far as winters go, Utah really isn't too bad. I mean, yeah, we have the inversions (when the cold air gets trapped in the valley, along with the smog and pollution and gunk, and when I want to go jump off one of those mountains), but then there's always the February thaw, followed by another inversion and then the March thaw.

I spent a winter in Indiana, and it was cold. All the time. No change. Except when it got colder.

My favorite part about winter in Utah is how the thaws always seem to take native Utahns by surprise every year. It gets up to the 50s in February, and it's like the world is coming to an end. "Oh, it's global warming!" or "Man, can you believe this? Never seen anything like it!" Yeah, except for every February for the last 50 years!

Seriously, though, the old adage: "If you don't like the weather, wait five minutes" definitely holds in Utah.

Except during an inversion. I can't be sure, but it feels like they last at least 8 years (approximately).

Saturday, January 3, 2009

A New Year

Okay, so it's 2009 now, and I figured it's probably time to get over my blogging aversion and join the 21st century. I know, I know, I'm gonna hear it from several of you, but I'm willing to take the jokes and jabs, cause I'm a big person...which, incidentally, is why one of my new years resolutions is to get back to the gym...

As many of you know, I'm working on finding an agent for my first novel, which is extremely exciting! I finished the novel early last year and began sending it to agents in August. Each time I get a rejection, I tweak my query and sometimes my manuscript, and send it off again. Can't wait for the notice that someone actually wants to read the whole thing!

I'm excited for 2009. I have a good feeling about this year. Despite the fact that I started it by getting bronchitis (just an excuse to sit on the couch all day and get a ton of writing done on my laptop), I think it'll be a fun year. Can't wait for the big family reunion coming up in August!