Nicole
Even if I don't post very much on here, I've been pretty active lately on my writing blog. Remember, you can always see when there's a new post just by looking over here ------>

I make sure to update that anytime I post something new, whether or not anyone cares. Hah! So if you're bored, mosey on over to Alternative Ramblings (there's a permanent link at the top of the page) for some fun stuff. In fact, there's some goodies from my most current WIP (work in progress) posted. There's been a kissing/near-kissing blogfestingness going around, and I've joined in. After all, who doesn't love some good smoochin'?

Whoo hoo!

*dances off*

Oh, and by the way; high-five for five inches of snow!


Merry Chrsitmas kiddies! (and you probably got a card)
Nicole
MERRY

CHRISTMAS

EVERYONE!


Nicole
Ok, so let's face it. I'm totally never going to go over any of the things that happened when I moved here. I'm too lazy, it feels like work, and who the hell reads this blog anyway? Besides, I pretty much summed it all up in that last blog post when I said I would get around to the stories.

*snort*

Life, otherwise, is mellow. My sister got married on October 10th, and perhaps I should have swiped a photo from the website they were on, but again, who cares? Haha. Anyway, that's not a very ethical thing to do (even if it's not hard). Though maybe if the link is still up I could send it to a few people. Maybe Hilary would get inspired by a few things...

No job. Still. No one that isn't shitty is hiring. So I freelance. I freelance my ass off. In fact, I should do my own freelance so I don't have to split the pay 50/50 or whatever the pay is actually split. Either way, I freelance so much crap that I'm at least making what I made while working at B&N - and that's if I assume I made an average $160 a week at B&N, which I feel pretty certain I did not.

I did lose my Top Reviewer hat on Epinions.com, which sucks - A LOT. Of course, I had ample time to get my shit together and write more reviews. Except I'd been freelancing so much, the idea of writing just seems like more work (another reason this blog has been rather dormant). Even fiction writing. I went a few months with nothing to send my critique partners because writing just sucked. That and I was having difficulty getting into a character's brain, and still am, but that's a different story. Anyway, losing the TR hat happened, and I think if I'd known my earnings would go down 95%, I would have worked a hell of a lot harder to keep the hat. I guess it had been so long since I'd not had a hat, I didn't realize how big of a difference it makes. So now I'm back, hence the near-every day Epinion. Screw you $4. I want my $25 back. Luckily, I think everyone knows that so the next time hats go out, maybe they'll see fit to grace me with one again, but it sucks because I don't think that will happen until after the holiday rush, and that's where a lot of the money comes in.

The writing kick has been good as of late, thanks to my older sister who bought me The 10th Kingdom for a graduation present. I forgot how much I loved that miniseries, though it really sucks that the first and last CDs won't play on my computer. I have to watch them on our DVD player, and then I don't do it unless I know dad's not around because A.) he'll make fun of it a little and B.) he asks constant questions and it gets to the point where I want to yell, "WILL YOU JUST WATCH THE MOVIE!? You will find out if you watch the movie!" I don't of course, but my brain screams it. Either way, it inspired me and I went buck wild on the writing, doing 100 or so pages in about 4 days. Not my record (my record is 124 in 2 days - this is all double-spaced by the way). So that's been good again, and the current source of the recent Alternative Ramblings blog posting. And of course, why I went bonkers and have the soundtrack now (see music bit on the side, though Imeem cut it off and I don't know why they do that to me and not to others).

Hmm. What else?

I got a $55 ticket for driving around with expired license plates. Whoops. Actually, my mom got it while driving my car, but since it's my fault the plates are expired, I'm paying for it.

PNC ate my bank, National City, so now I'm changing out banks because I'm not interested in PNC's strange deal of charging $1 when you use your debit card at certain gas stations (no telling which ones either).

I think that's really it. Nothing major going on. Halloween was a bust, a shocking, shocking bust. A grand total of maybe 10 kids. Astonishing since we practically live next to a school and a school bus drives by to pick up and dump off kids right on our street.

Thanksgiving is coming up kids, so get your turkeys and your pumpkin pies - it's time to chow down and be thankful we've got turkeys and pumpkin pies to chow down on!

Photobucket Currently: Singing and Dreaming
Nicole
I couldn't quite bring myself to delete aaaaalllll my old blog posts that were previously housed in the Life O'Me blog (which is now the Bookseller Recommends blog). So instead I imported them all to this blog, though once I come back from St. Louis there's a good chance I'll go through them and delete this or that.

Or at the very least make it a bit more user friendly. Feel free to preuse old posts, but please, keep in mind:


Nicole
Happy Birthday to Me.

*headdesk*

Not the best birthday ever, but I've most certainly had worse. I did get some new shoes (though I had to buy them, and I only did that because I HAD to - my other ones were falling apart and giving me blisters) and some chocolates (those I didn't have to pay for). Now we're eating tacos. A random day, to be sure.

I finally got a big project out of my hair, but promptly took on another, albeit smaller, one. At the very least I managed to finally critique some stuff like I should have done two months ago.

I do have stories for anyone actually reading this blog (re: Megan XD). I really do. But I just don't have the time to sit down and write them now. Sort of strange considering I'm not working At least, not the way most of us think of as working - the freelance thing is all I've got right now, but it takes up time. But when I'm not sitting at my computer with Word open (something I'm beginning to loathe), I have oodles of other little things that always seem to pile up. A lot of it is due to my sister's upcoming wedding. We're making the little wedding favors by hand, which easily eats a few hours. And I almost can't believe it, but I'm still buying stuff in relation to my place in the wedding (spending money I basically don't have. Aren't credit cards great?). Running errands. My car badly needs an oil change. I have to call my bank still. And on and on it goes.

Even better, it seems like everything I own has suddenly decided to die or break down on me. My shoes finally got worn to the point that running in them a week ago gave me a lovely dime-sized blister on the heel my little footsie. They're 5-6 years old. My printer choked yesterday and refuses to print (it's probably as old as my shoes...if not older), though the annoying part about that is the printer itself appears rather fine. The problem appears to be in the computer somewhere - the document gets sent to the little print window and then blips right off again. Maybe the print cable is broken. I dunno. And then my laptop bought the farm while I was visiting my sister. That's actually not so bad because I never used it anyway, it was a two-time hand-me-down, and I'm selling it on ebay in the hopes of making at least a little money out of it.

But aside from all that, yes. Stories. I have a lot of them and plan on writing them once my sister's wedding has gone down and the happy couple is off on their honeymoon and I've likely run out of things to do here. Here's a bit of what they're going to entail:

  • My move to Missouri which took about 7 days, 2 of which were done in 92ยบ heat with no A/C.
  • The new house - that had no water and no dishes, pots, pans, or anything else for 4 days.
  • The teaspoon mouse.
  • The God-awful low-carb diet is back, only this time with a reason.
  • Everything that's gone wrong with my bridesmaid dress (which continues into the present).
  • Basement turned swamp.
  • Anything else I remember.
That's it for now folks. Enjoy the rest of your day and eat some cake for me since I can't have any, an ironic fact considering a few weeks ago I said I'd have cake even if I had to make it for myself. Geezo.




Hard at work!
Nicole
I will post an update at some point. Seriously. I promise. :P
Nicole
I lost my baby today.

This is Freckles, my dog of 15 years. Isn't she adorable?



Old age finally caught up with her. I won't go into details, though there are so many. But today we had to take her in and let her go.

I'm at a weird place of calm and misery. The calm is for her, really. I watched her go. Drift into that hazy loss of drug-induced sleep until her little heart finally stopped. I didn't sob hysterically like I thought I might, but petted her until dad finally sort of ushered me from the room. She was gone, and staying there wouldn't change anything.

She was a good dog.

The misery, I know, is more for myself. I miss her. Her dog bowls are still downstairs. Her doggie bed is still there. Unless mom and dad have cleared them away already. I can't write this and not be miserable and using a lot of tissues. She wasn't completely my dog, more the family dog, but as time went by, she was mostly my mom's and my dog. My older sister is far off in Missouri, and in a way, she's lucky because she hasn't seen Freckles in so long, she's distanced to it. Oh well.

Freckles, honey, baby, I love you. We'll meet again, in time.
Nicole
For those visiting for the first time (as there may be a few of you - you know who you are), welcome to my little bloggy. This used to be just a hub called The Profile with links to everything I was connected to on the web (or just about). Now it's taken over the job that my Life O'Me blog used to have. Here is where you'll hear about the goings on in my life. Not often a big deal, but sometimes I have weird stories to relate.

As you can see, there are links all over, so here's a quick rundown of where they'll take you:

  • Alternative Ramblings ~ My writing blog. All my writing news will be posted there, from what I'm writing now to thoughts on genres to my current agent search.
  • A Bookseller Recommends ~ Previously the Life O'Me blog. Provided I get to continue my job at B&N in Kansas City (...and even if I don't), this is due to become my reading blog focusing mostly on recommending good books for just about anyone. This blog officially rolls out the welcome mat August 1st.
  • LinkedIn ~ I'm on this social networking site as opposed to MySpace or Facebook. It's more professional and can actually work for your career, though I haven't utilized it for such things yet.
  • Epinions ~ The site where I review anything and everything. Books, music, camping/hiking equipment, movies, office supplies, and more. I used to be an Advisor as well as a Top Reviewer in several categories, but my production has really slowed down in recent years, thus the loss of all my hats (as they're called) except for one (which will probably be gone soon as well).
Links on the side are mostly for fun. The first group [Fun and Functional] are links I highly value. The links farther down [Bored? Amuse Yourself] are just for kicks, as are the T-shirt links. You can click those and peruse on your own time. Just be careful of what you might be getting into...

And yes, that is a 30-second clip of music to the right. Just make sure your speakers are low because you never know what I might have stored away in there. You'll be able to see what artist/song I have ready to play, but if you don't know what it is, it's best to be careful as I enjoy a good bit of loud music now and then.

So welcome, enjoy, and feel free to leave comments (you don't have to be a member of Blogger to do so).

:)
Nicole
Welcome one and all to the new and improved page by moi, Nicole T.

This blogspot will house the goings on in the Life O'Me as the previous blog with that name will either go defunct or towards another purpose. Whatever the case, this is the location for happenings in my life, only this time with less of an R rating (for the kids). Who knows? This may be the starting point for visitors (for when I get published - I always say "when") until I actually purchase a .com with my name involved. After all, why spend the money when I don't even have a book out? That and I'm not even sure how to put together a webpage. Oh, sure, I have some rudimentary knowledge, but overall, I'm rather clueless.

On the homefront, there is big news (semi-big news on the writing front as well, but we'll get to that in the Ramblings blog).

First, I'll start out with: I graduated.

Yay!

Yes, I graduated on June 28th and now have an M.A. in Writing Popular Fiction. I know, some of you are thinking, "Yeah, ok, so what's that get you?" Better skills in writing, that's what. I'd like to teach creative writing - I think it would be great fun - but that isn't my main goal. I'm frustrating my entire family with this sort of thing, working at Barnes & Noble instead of getting a better paying job and whatnot, but truth is, no one will hire a creative writing teaching until that person has published something. Frankly, I'd love to mosey on back to Seton Hill after getting published and teach in that program. I would love that. Heck, Maria V. Snyder did it! Yes indeed, she graduated from the program in 2007 and now she teaches there. Just for the WPF program, not as a professor the rest of the year.

And if I want, I could even go back and get an M.F.A. since they *just* recently got the okay to change the program to allow people to get that instead of the M.A. Sounds nice, but I just don't have the money. I'd be in school forever and owe the goverment and banks millions (ok, so not millions, but enough) and that doesn't exactly appeal to me. For me, it's time to get something IN PRINT.

That's the first piece of big news. The second?

I am moving.

Yes. Again. I am moving again. I basically follow my family everywhere because honestly, what is out here for me? Ok, that sounds bad and kind of lame, now that I think about it, but I'll explain in a second. The move this time is due to my father's (always my father) new job at Kansas City University teaching Special Education. He's not officially a Dr. with a Ph.D yet, but he's pretty close.

Actually, I debated for a long time about posting this information and, if you want to know the truth, debated for a long time on whether or not to follow my family to Missouri (we'll be living in Blue Springs, so anyone in the area, feel free to drop by and swim in the pool - yes, our house has a pool). I could actually go for one more year here in PA, but I simply don't make enough money to have my own place and the job opportunities are pretty slim. I think maybe if I worked full time at B&N - especially since I'm due for another raise in, oh, 4 weeks or so - then I'd be good to go, but they just don't have any full time slots for me. Maybe if I begged them...I do like working there even if other people (i.e. dad) think it's a lowish sort of job for someone of my smarts.

The other thing though, is that everything going down (and soon) will be going down within MO and the surrounding area. My sister's graduation. Megan's wedding (though I'm still kind of freaking on how I'm going to afford that since I owe bundles in loans and now that I'm no longer in school, the payments have started right up...I guess a credit card may be in order). And of course, my sister's wedding. I mean, just think of all the back and forth that would mean if I stayed here. Ugh.

So I'm just going to go with. I'll see what happens there and besides, I'll be a hell of a lot closer to Colorado than I am now. Just think - from next door to Kansas City to Colorado is about 8 hours. Do you know how AWESOME that is? And besides, for the girl who wants to ultimately live in Colorado the rest of her life anyway, that makes moving there much, much easier in the end.

So we'll see.

That's all for now. We move the first week of August so we'll be packing up quite soon. Hope you guys enjoy the new blog layout (though I'm still not sure about the title...), the side goodies, and are all having a good time, wherever you might be.

Toodles!
Nicole
Just Finished:

Finger Lickin' Fifteen by Janet Evanovich - Crazy killers, Ranger, a lot of cars getting destroyed, and BBQ. Tasty.


Currently Reading:

Libyrinth by Pearl North - A Young Adult novel by my very own Seton Hill Mentor

This Is Your Brain on Music by Daniel Levitin - The science behind why we like the music we do and just how integrated it is with our mental wiring.


On Deck:

Fire Study by Maria V. Snyder - The continuation of Yelena's story in the Study Series.
Nicole
Right. This blog is shutting down. Yep. I have three blogs right now and one really isn't serving much of a purpose (The Profile). So instead, I plan on moving the general "Life O'Me" concept to the Profile (and the name will change). And since there's a chance that more visitors will come there in the future, it's going to mellow out a bit (i.e. less profanity...heh). Not sure what I'm going to do with this blog yet - maybe I'll turn it into Nicole's Rant Blog or something so if I really need to freak out I can do it here.

Anyway, I do have some fun news to share on two fronts, so if you stopped here first, go visit Alternative Ramblings and The Profile to find out what's going down in the life o'me.
Nicole
My last Blogger template was annoying me. I'm not sure how it appeared on everyone else's computer screen, but I know how it showed up on mine, and I wasn't pleased. Moreover, I was bored with it.

While I should be working on something else and quite a bit more important, I'm a skilled slacker so it's okay.

[The trouble now is that some things just don't want to show up like they're supposed to, so expect this place to be a little jacked up for a while until I comb through the codes in order to figure out what the hell the deal is.] Scratch that - I've now fixed all the little hiccups and found out where some of my missing graphics went. I've even added in a few random goodies just for kicks even though I have absolutely no clue how many people actually visit this page.

**I'm still working on getting a proper FULL song in the side column and without the player looking stupid. Not sure it's gonna happen, but I'm going to try places until it works.

Either way, I hope you like the new layout. Scroll around. See what's new. I think it's bright and chipper and fun. The funny part is that I hardly ever drink coffee (even though I do enjoy coffee flavor - yum!).
Nicole
Just Finished:

Starship Troopers by Robert A. Heinlein - The quintessential military SF book. Read it. Seriously.

Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher - Young Adult novel dealing with suicide, shitty high school issues, and more all done in a unique manner.

Poison Study and Magic Study by Maria Snyder (who teaches at my grad school) - Fantasy novels with nonstop action and intrigue, complete with poison and, yes, magic. Both books were awesome, by the way. Don't let the fact that they're in the Romance section fool you.


Currently Reading:

This Is Your Brain On Music by Daniel Levitin - The science behind why we like the music we do and just how integrated it is with our mental wiring.

Got Fight? by Forrest Griffin - Want to learn about MMA (among other things) from one of the craziest dudes in the UFC? Read this and laugh your ass off in the process.


On Deck:

Fire Study by Maria Snyder - The continuation of Yelena's story in the Study Series.


Recently Purchased:

Darkfever, Bloodfever, and Faefever by Karen Marie Moning - Part of the Fever Series dealing with deadly Fae and the fate of the world. Also in the Romance section - but again, don't let that fool you. Read their respective reviews: #1, #2 (I haven't gotten around to reviewing Faefever yet). Dreamfever comes out in August (whoohoo!)

No-Bake Cookies by Camilla Saulsbury - The title pretty much says it all.

Physics of the Impossible by Michio Kaku - Loved this book so much, finally had to buy it. Read the review here.
Nicole
That I live by, that I'll never forget.

On writing:

Writers aren't exactly people; they're a whole lot of people trying to be one person.
On life:
The only way to live with honor in this world is to be what we pretend to be.
From Vince:

Nicole, you walk like a pimp.
On war:

They call this war a cloud over the land. But the men made the weather and then they stand in the rain and say 'Shit, it's raining!'
On God:

The Kingdom of God is inside you and all about you, not in mansions of wood and stone. Split a piece of wood...and I am there, lift a stone...and you will find me.
Nicole
Got my second mentor email today and guess what?


I PASSED.


Hooray, hooray. Moreover, I turned in my genre essay and have been approved to go ahead with my teaching module choice (for those of you wondering, it's Idea Generation and Name Creation).

More hoorays.

But for now I'm tired and will probably go crash since I have to work aaaaallll day tomorrow.




Currently: Blah.
Nicole
I just got the email from my first mentor telling me



I PASSED.


Yay.

I want to throw up.



Nicole

Finally someone said it. The major news networks need to figure this out. They're making this swine flu crap sound like something from the movie Outbreak. Geez. It's like that stupid SARS thing all over again. Watch out, Ryan.


Currently: Ugh. SO tired of stupid people...
Nicole
Well, I finally got all my stuff together and printed all 422 pages of my thesis (book) yesterday. Twice. Sent each one off to my mentors for the final evaluation. This, kiddies, is the final test. Either I pass or I fail. I'm pretty damn sure I'm gonna pass. If I don't, well, I just might go berserk on somebody. Whee! Feel the magic. Now all I have to do is write a paper and create a 50-minute teaching lesson. Good times.

On another note, check this out. I don't know about you, but it's not cool. What's worse is that some performers actually support this. Goes to show they don't know much about how radio has helped them in the past. Frankly, I think this is crap, so I took action (I'll bet some of you think I'm all talk). So here you go:



Three letters to all the PA reps (complete with friggin' creepy nutcracker stamps) about this performance tax. Of course none of them will read it, I'm sure, and they're going to keep doing all the bullshit that politicians do - and by the way, I thought it was pretty damn awesome when I saw in the news that people actually were sending bags of tea to these idiots and on the 15th had "tea parties." I think what a lot of other people and newscasters missed out on was what the point of those rallies were. It wasn't about taxes per se, but basically the little guy getting fucked over aaaaaaaallllll the time by policitians making deals and ignoring everything we want. That's why I think any of the politicians that wanted to join in - Democrat, Republican, whatever - no matter how into it they truly may have been, should have been kept out. It just skewed everything so that everyone got all Democrat/Republican on each other again and ignored what the whole point of that day was.

All right. Fuck the policitians and everyone in Washington. Next topic before I get irritated.

Football game today. Which means getting out of my driveway is a pain in the ass. No idea why these losers are even playing a football game. And one of the players is busted for smoking marijuana (while on probation for, guess what? Smoking MJ). He's still not going to go to jail.

Pennsylvanians still can't drive and it's gotten to the point that I've begun to wish bad things upon them. Take the girl doing her makeup in front of me the other day. Yes, I could see her applying blush with her nice little brush and putting on mascara - mascara - while cruising down the road (with the occasional swerve of course). I wanted her to crash. I really did. Not bad, of course, I don't want to deal with death and blood, but just enough to fuck up her car. I'd stop, call 911 and tell them, "Yeah, this woman was putting on makeup while driving." And I'd tell all the cops and everyone would be like, "Ah, you dumb bitch." I have no tolerance for these people. Not when they do things like this. Or when they start to turn into the oncoming traffic lane instead of further to the left where their lane actually is and people like me who suddenly find a car coming towards them have a moment of, "Are you fucking kidding me?"

But it's finally warm today at least and if the traffic dies down, I might go get ice cream at DQ. It's supposed to be 85 so I might even downgrade from a t-shirt to a tank top.

Hmm, hungry. Wonder what's for lunch.....or rather, if there is anything for lunch. =P



Currently: Yay!
Nicole
I hate to go over this again because it seems like I always am, but it's because it just fascinates me. I don't understand it, which is bizarre since it's....me.

I decided to do a bit of number crunching in relation to the guys I find attractive - from those I've met in flesh and blood to the actors and such I fantasize about for the hell of it. I already knew the ratio would be sad, if not rather pathetic, since for some strange, strange reason I am more attracted to guys who are not American.

To say 30% of the men I find attractive are American is being generous.

Why is this?? I seriously don't understand. I've discussed it before, many times, but I don't get it. It's not the accent either, if that's what you're thinking. While that is a definite turn on, I'll be watching the TV/movie screen and think, "Damn, that guy is hot" only to find out much, (some times a lot) later that he's not American. And they always end up being from the UK area or places the UK has touched on (Australia and on occasion, South Africa - even several Canadians have beaten out Americans in attractiveness). It's just fucking weird, ok? And it's kind of pissing me off because that means I'm sort of screwed in the guy department, which I have been for quite some time. How so? Well, first off, if I find a guy, he'll have to fall into that meager less than 30%. Add to that, of all my 25 years, I've only had serious crushes on all of 3 guys (almost 4, but I don't know if I can count that guy or not due to it not being a crush so much as "This guy is hot and goddamn it, if I get a chance to make out with him, I'm fuckin' takin' it.").

Yes, you read that right. 3 (sort of 4) guys. What. The. Fuck.

People say I'm picky, or used to. They probably still do. Hell, anyone reading this probably thinks I have mental problems. I don't think that's quite it. I say this because I've tried. People would always say, "Oh, so-and-so likes you, why don't you give it a chance?" I would. Mentally, I would. I'd try to see myself with the person, many times, in different situations, but most of the time it just didn't work. There was no zing. No attraction. Friendly affection, sure. Shit, I can do that with anyone, but as for sparking chemistry...*shrug* Which, I might add, sucked because then I always felt bad saying, "No, sorry, I don't want to date you. Sorry."

*huff* It's a conundrum I can't seem to solve. I don't know what it is about these outsiders that always catches my interest. Maybe American guys in my eyes are all generic. That same American boy style, look, ambiance. I don't know. I. Do not. Know.

I guess there really is no point in me trying to analyze my desires. I guess I'm just bound to like what I like. I sure as hell won't ever examine my attachment to chocolate, but I like to think that drooling over a man is different than drooling over a food item. Hell, everyone likes chocolate, unless they're allergic to it or just......fucking weird. It's just that some little switch gets turned on in me when these certain men appear......

I don't know. This isn't a complaint (ok, it sort of is, because this switch basically indicates that I'm fucked and while I'm cool with the aspect that I might never marry, I'd at least like to hook up with someone awesome now and then for Heaven's sake. A girl has needs.), but more of an attempt to understand what the hell the deal is. I'll probably never find out and instead ought to get a plane ticket to Ireland or something and find out what happens. Hah.

Whatever the case, I'm going to look damn good at work tomorrow since I have to be there all day. Who knows, maybe I'll bump into some hot non-American and get a little something out of it.

Boy wouldn't that just be the highlight of my adult life. ......And in a sort of creepy twist, a song titled "You Never Know" has just appeared on Winamp...



Currently: Yep. Still needin' that sugar...
Nicole
*snort*


Um, okay - why is money being wasted on this type of study? I mean, think about it. How many thousands, possibly millions, were put into this study in order to find out that yes, crustaceans can be stressed and feel pain.

I have a real easy test they could have observed that's been done for years.

When you put a lobster in a pot of boiling water it tries to get out. Why? *Probably* because that shit hurts. The same can be said for just about anything.

Jeez.

Oh a lighter note, or at least a less annoyed, are-you-freaking-kidding-me one, life is good. Tolerable. Ok, it's good. I mean, I have a roof over my head and plenty of food and a job (or two) so that counts as good. Otherwise though, not much going on. Same old, same old.

I have to say though. I miss....well....ugh. Never mind.

Currently: Oh hell. I need some sugar. T_T
Psh
Nicole
FUCK South Africa.

I mean, SERIOUSLY people. How much sense does that make?

And by the way, for the record, anyone who doesn't have a problem with the guys in Guantanamo being let out should take them in. Let them sleep over at their house for a few weeks. Do it. I dare you.



Currently: GAWD are these people FOR REAL? Ugh.
Nicole
So yeah. Been a while since that last spaz post. I mean to post a few days after that but...yeah. Anyway, a few things I've either discovered or forgot to mention:

I do answer to the name of Janice now.

I can still become invisible.

Discovery Cove kinda sucks.

I've realized why it may be harder for me to hook a guy - I look younger than I am. When I was 24, one of my co-workers (a girl a few years younger than me) thought I was 19. Everyone always guesses way lower than my actual age, and while that's all fine and dandy and going to work out well for me when I'm older, it's kinda shitty at the moment because if I see a handsome man of 27 or something, he's not going to look at me twice because he probably thinks I'm 20 or some shit. Great for walking across campus, bad for wanting to find an actual man as opposed to a college schmuck. Damn. It looks like I'll have to dress up and wear makeup more than I actually do (which is 1 out of every 30 days maybe) in order to potentially boost age-appearance. Even then I'm not sure it works. I think it does...for all I know I'm reinforcing the age concept. Damn. I'll have to ask around.

I find it funny that when gas started to go up again, no one started bitching. I'm willing to bet no one bitches until it's as high as it was last time. Idiots. I sure as hell bitch. Not much I can do about it, but I still bitch.

JPMorgan Chase can go suck a donkey. They broke the previous agreement between Washington Mutual and MyPoints, Inc. so now their credit card is going to turn into some shitty card with lame rewards. Once I pay off my current balance, I'm canceling that bitch. I should email MyPoints to see how their new card agreement is going.

I'm going to Florida in July. Who wants to join me?

My sister's wedding is inching closer and I'm going to freak out one of these days and buy one of the items on her list (...are they allowed to look at it after putting stuff on it? Cuz um...I'll probably be the first to buy something out of sheer paranoia). Hey, I decided on this thing WAY long ago and I'm going to be mega mad if someone else beats me to the punch.

I'm actually happier and more normal than I sound on this blog. I made cookies (A LOT of cookies) the other day, I enjoy my job, and we got our first thunderstorm of spring yesterday. Ok, so it's going to get cold and snow later in the week and it's not even March yet, but STILL. It's gonna come in like a lion and it was nice to just lie in bed all snuggled up and listen to it rumble.

I'm thinking of starting a tea campaign, if only to annoy the fuck out of the political heads and remind them that the people are still here. The idea? Simple. Get a bag of tea. Write a brief, to the point letter reminding them that they work for us, not themselves, and mail both items to a politician of your choice. Hey, it's just tea. They can't bust you for that. No joke. I am sriously, seriously considering doing it. I mean, just think - politicians all over getting hundreds of bags of tea every day. Sure, they're probably not going to be handling the mail themselves, but it would sure as hell show them that we're watching what they're doing and a lot of us are NOT happy about it, no matter what your political affiliation is. The point isn't to pick on dems or reps - the point is to remind them that THEY were voted in by US. THEY WORK FOR US. But most of them, on both sides, work only for themselves and it's just not cool any more. Hell, just think if that made the news: "Washington has lately been deluged by tea. In a statement that can only be reflecting the Boston Tea Party that helped spur the Revolution, citizens across the country have been sending bags of tea to politicians with letters reminding them of who they work for."

I should so fucking do it. Start up a website, take some pictures of the tea and the letters. Yeah.

Currently: A little crazy.
Nicole
I'm sorry, but I can't help it anymore. I have to say something even if NO ONE is going to read this but you guys and I'm sure you all agree with me (or at least most of it).

So South Carolina is seeking to charge Michael Phelps over the whole bong photo thing.

Seriously? I mean...seriously??

Ok, granted, it's illegal (in which case, whichever douchebag leaked the photo scores with an EPIC FAIL), but consider what's going on here for *just* a second. Let's compare.

Two players here at Penn State University were busted for marijuana (and more, if I remember right, but then again football players here at Penn State are ALWAYS fucking up. That's right - if you're a Penn Stater, most of your players are fucking douchebags who start bar fights and do drugs) but guess what? They were suspended for two (maybe four) games and then the big Michigan State game rolled up and guess what? They were back on the field playing. Good ole Joe Paterno and every fat cat at that fucking university put those guys back on the field because football is lucrative, collegiate or not, and they want to win. Because winning is important kids. Winning is EVERYTHING, even at college. Especially when it's a big team. Why, you have to have your drug snorting guys playing on the field. Are they being charged? I *think* so, but hey, here, I'm not sure. The police might be a bunch of pussies too and let them off with a warning for all I know. But the university sure as hell didn't mind much.

Our new President, Barack Obama, has explicitly stated that yes, he's done MJ. And....wait a moment....he's done cocaine too. I guess a little blow now and then is okay if you don't get caught. How come he's not getting in trouble? Why isn't he getting charged? He ADMITTED TO SOMETHING THAT IS ILLEGAL. But I guess that's okay now that he's president. That and he's from Chicago where a good percentage of corrupt politicians slither out of *coughBlagocough*. You pretty much have to be a major fuckup to get arrested when you're a politician from Chicago (which is why Blagojevitch isn't going to get off, I mean, c'mon, the freaking FBI came to your house and arrested your ass dude. You're toast, admit it. And besides, nothing you say makes any sense in relation to what's going on and I don't think anyone really gives a shit anyway. GTFO. Douche.) So yeah. President Obama has smoked marijuana and sniffled up some cocaine (you haven't heard? just search for Barack Obama and drugs and you'll get oodles of news clippings and oh yeah, it's in his book). But hell, as least he admitted it as opposed to Clinton's retarded, "I didn't inhale" speech.

Hey, wait, that works. Phelps! Just tell them you didn't inhale!

It's apparently okay to evade your taxes too. You can skimp and keep all that money, and if you're caught, you won't have to pay anything, and even then if you have to pay something, you won't have to pay any pentalties. That is, as long as your a politician. The rest of us will get screwed over without any Vaseline. In fact, I'm surprised no one has been shot yet by some disgruntled worker who's lost his house and his job. So who are our tax evaders? Timothy Geithner - who, by the way is TREASURY SECRETARY. The guy can't even handle his own goddamn taxes and he's expected to handle our money and be economic advisor to the president? OH wait, it's no big deal. He says he just made some mistakes. It's okay. Senator Tom Daschle has also apparently make a few silly little goofs. He was the nominee for Secretary of Health and Human Services. Way to serve yourself by not paying $128,000. Douchebag. There's at least two more but I don't have time for them.

Then of course there are aaalll the people bitching about this. Self-righteous idiots who think everyone that goes through college doesn't drink or try drugs (of any kind) or that if they have, they're automatically drop-outs or bad people. Take a long, hard look at whatever football team or baseketball team you cheer for. How many of the players have been in drug busts? Beating women? Starting bar fights? Fighting in general? Dog fighting? And look at them - they're all still playing, not in jail, getting away with nothing more than a slap on the wrist and a fine (which they can pay off no problem because it's a drop in the bucket for them). Most of them, anyway (it seems like it's only when the public gets too pissed off at one person do they decide to press serious charges and actually chuck the guy in jail. But hey, when he gets out, he'll be able to play again, and might just start up with old habits. Why not?). But do these same people bitch and whine? Do they even pay attention? Do they have a clue? No, probably not. And if they do, it isn't until multiple offenses by the player do they finally get annoyed. Plaxico Burress of the Giants is a good example (and WTF kind of name is that anyway? Sounds like a goddamn plastic company). I mean, he shot himself in the leg with a gun at a nightclub and then a fellow teammate tried to help hide the gun. What. The. Fuck. And to prove my point, on the New York Daily News website next to the article about that is a vote you can take whether or not he's more trouble than he's worth! One option is "Yes, shooting himself was final straw" which begs the question of how many fucking straws were there before, and then "No, he's simply too talented to drop." He shot himself...with a gun...in public...and you want to keep him because he's fucking talented? Michael Phelps won eight Olympic gold medals and I'm willing to bet the same people who would vote "No" would cry foul just because he's taking a hit from a bong.

Are you people fucking serious?

I can't take it. I simply can't take it anymore. People in this country are just getting too fucking retarded for me. Yes, I said it, I'm politically incorrect, and I don't fucking care. By the way, 16% of however many people took the poll voted "No, keep him." Oh, and by the way, he had the gun "to protect himself." Despite the fact that there were security guards around him. And he was drinking. Yeah. Real smart, Plastic boy. Fucking douchebag. And he gets $35 million a year to catch a football. That's fantastic.

But no, by all means, charge Phelps, he broke the law, naturally, in a photo, since that's evidence enough and everything else I've just mentioned is a-okay. I just thought I'd point out how fucked up this country's priorities have become and how hypocritical people are.


Currently: Unable to take it anymore.
Nicole
Sandra's right. It has been way too long. Course, I always say, "I don't have anything to talk about" and then go on some huge ramble that lasts forever, proving myself wrong (yet again). So now that I've said that, I can go on into my huge ramble.

Since November, I've spent way too much money on presents for my family during December, so my credit card is slightly retarded (add to that my car repair bill, but hey, at least I get points on my credit card, so that means I get gift cards later on, hence buying something essentially means buying something else at the same time, just at later date). The good thing is that I'm now getting more hours at work (a slight pain in the back, but hey, whatcha gonna do?) so that means a nice chunky paycheck (or at least as chunky as my paychecks can get) each week. Likewise my credit card bill isn't due until Feb. 3 so by then I feel pretty confident I won't have to move any money out of my savings in order to pay it off (that's right, I pay the whole thing off all at once, all the time. I refuse to pay more than I have to when I don't have to). However that also means no money goes into my savings for a while. *sigh*

But hey, that's what I get for spending so much (but what can I say? I like giving gifts and even when nearly broke, I bought books for some kids for charity - I can't help myself). No biggie.

On the subject of presents and money and books, I'm excited because very, very soon now I will purchase a nice bookshelf for all my books that need a home. A combination of gifts will give me that and I'm super excited. I really need another bookshelf (taller + more shelves) because I keep accumulating books and I don't want to have to stop just because I have no room (which has been my main reason, but when I get stuff as gifts, it kind of messes things up a bit). At present, I have a healthy number of books sitting on other books, on the floor, or just in places that could be put to better use. I got ahead of myself today and bought a bookend because I know the new shelf will leave me with plenty of space and a bookend will become necessary. I got it before leaving Greensburg at their B&N since ours doesn't have a super cool gift area complete with nifty bookends and extra stuff. A good example of me ending up with more books than I ever expected would be during my stay in Greensburg, when I brought two books and ended up bringing back eight.

Which brings us to Greensburg. For those of you that have forgotten, I'm in a Master's Program there, so every 6 months-ish or so I drive 2-3 hours (depending upon traffic) west to the not-so-little town of Greensburg outside of Pittsburgh. I stay for a week and do writer workshops and take 3 hour classes, go to book readings, and attend other random events like wine socials (which we'll get to in a minute because it begs discussion). Residency this year was good. The first three I was social-ish, and if you recall my previous blog entries, not quite sure how to handle the whole thing. Mostly because I've been on my own for, well, ever, so suddenly getting thrown in with other people who have magic users and detectives and young adults as protagonists and antagonists and just plain similiar to myself in work habits and thought patterns was weird. After all, this is the only place where, as Sherry said, a person can say, "It's a good day for torture" and everyone knows what you mean. ;)

This year though, I have to say, I was pretty damn social. A social butterfly, in fact (at least as social butterfly as I'm likely to get in my life). I hung out with different groups (you know who you are) and had a good ole time. I got to chitchat with mentors (I really would love to share Mike Arnzen with you all, or even the world, but those of us who know him would likely agree, the world probably isn't entirely ready for Mike Arnzen. I'm sure he knows it. Haha!) and found out that I'm a cool cucumber and apparently have elements of Lovecraft and Howard lurking around in my writing (something that I thought, upon hearing, was extraordinarily flattering, shocking [as in surprise], and pretty much just put me on cloud 9).

While we didn't have any bread fights or major battles - it's harder to have a major battle in a hotel - there was a lot of semi-psychotic chatting ranging from Cthulu worship to dragons eating people to hillbillies creepy enough to make the aforementioned Mike Arnzen exit the conversation. *side snicker* And of course, fuckin' Brian. I've debated whether or not to put up a story regarding fuckin' Brian and an elevator and have decided that as funny as it is (despite its outcome), if you want to know it, you can just email me. The rest of you were there and you know what happened and who kept hitting the button and who wanted to swallow a knife. A better way to understand one small thing is to familiarize yourself with Dane Cook and his skit about fuckin' Brian which reminds me that I need to send that to someone...

Ok. So yeah. That's pretty much it. Now I have to do a handful of things and then I graduate in June (whoohoo!). At present I must unpack and...well gosh I think that's it. I could list the junk I need to do to graduate, but I'm sure that would bore you all (since most of you don't really care and the rest of you, well, you already know anyway). I guess I'll just end this with a few life notes:

Normally I'm very photogenic, but FUCK THAT.

Texas Roadhouse bread still rules the unverise (in conjunction with Outback - is there an Outback in Greensburg? I must look this up...)

Later on I'll post a link to a fellow Seton Hiller's picture account so inquiring minds can see Seton Hill in the winter. And depending upon who posts what, I might have a picture of myself in the blue dress again (which later on led to a slight bit of discomfort. Fuckin' Brian...)

We now know what scares Arnzen (wait, I already mentioned that).

We're going to miss all of you who have just left. Can't wait to see you on the shelves!

There really, truly is always just ONE creepy dude that lurks around you and won't go away.

See the rest of you in June!


Currently: FUCKIN' BRIAN'S COMING! (oh, wait, he's not, it's cool)