Look at this!  I got a new theme. I made it myself in my new Artisteer software Jerry bought me.  It took about 5 minutes to do.  And then another 5 days to figure out how to install it on WordPress.  Jerry bought me another neat surprise which I’m working on.  Things are changing my friends.  Things are changing…

I think I’m having a mid-life crisis.  I’ve heard about these things but never really knew what it was all about.  Now that I know, I’ve got to say, it’s not all that exciting. 

I am coming to this slow acceptance that this is it.  This is my life. It’s not a bad life.  In fact it’s a pretty good life with marriage to a great guy and a steady paycheck from a fabulous job.  But that sense of anticipation I always used to have, that feeling that I’m working toward something, that’s gone.  Maybe if I had kids who were graduating from high school or something I’d understand why I was feeling this way but since I don’t it’s kind of confusing.  Instead I just keep realizing that this is it.  This is my life. 

The feelings that come with this are kind of like a mixture of boredom and depression with a general lack of interest in anything.  I’m guessing that some people may not tolerate the boredom too well and end up doing something new and different, like the guy who buys a motorcycle (ahem) or the woman who goes back to college.  Or people who seem to have an constant stream of drama in their lives with divorce, family drama, troubles at work or constant financial worries.  I realize there are things in life we can’t control, but maybe sometimes people create unnecessary drama because they don’t want to deal with the eventual reality that this is it?  This is life.

Luckily for me, as well as my husband and co-workers, I’m kind of a chicken so doing something crazy to shake things up is unlikely.  I may buy an outrageous pair of shoes or learn to cook, but otherwise I think I’ll keep the life changing drama to a minimum and ride this out because acceptance of your own reality is the only way to know where you really belong in this world.  And this is it.  This is my life. 

True statement made by me on the phone the other day to my mom:  If you don’t know the difference between writing on someone’s wall and sending a private email maybe you shouldn’t be using Facebook.

This was not said because some horrible family secret was made public.  This was actually part of a broader conversation about technology and the internet.  For some reason my mom, who is very sweet and the best mom a kid could have by the way, thinks I’m some kind of expert on these things.  That shows you how much she knows. 

She may also be reading this right now. 

Hey Mom! Just in case you are reading this right now, this is not an email.  It’s also not Facebook.  This is a blog…which the whole world can see…but only 3 people read.  But the whole world could read it if they wanted.  Even China, as long as I don’t say anything negative about their government, which I maybe just did, so probably not China now. 

Anyone out there reading this who wants to say hi to my mom, please do so in the comments section.  It will confuse the hell out of her but it would be really nice. 

One of the problems I have with blogging, and the reason why I don’t do it more often, is the fact that I have a lot of ideas about things I want to say and get across, I just don’t know how to say it.  Too many times I will start out with a post and end up deleting it because I end up with long rambly mess.  Let’s see if this one makes it.

It actually seems like a simple and easy to fix problem when you think about it.  Why not get the whole long rambly mess out and then pick out the good stuff? 

I guess that’s one of the things about the discipline of writing (yes, I totally think that writing should be treated as a discipline) that I need to practice.  Picking things out of the messy stuff.  It’s hard because I don’t like messy stuff.  I think it’s fair to say that most people don’t.  Dogs maybe and probably weird crazy people.  And I guess there are also some people who don’t like messy stuff but they can tolerate OK and are good at cleaning it up. 

But the rest of us, ie: me, can’t even tolerate messy stuff.  I hate it and try to avoid it at all costs.  I have to pay someone to clean my own toilets for god’s sake!  I tip toe through messy stuff when I do have to deal with it.  God forbid I actually have to create it when I try to write and then try to pick good stuff out of it.

Like this whole freaking post I’m stuck with now.  What’s good about any of this?  The tiny bit about the dogs and weird crazy people maybe, and the fact that I have to pay someone to clean my own toilets.  And I like the phrase “long rambly mess.”  But according to my spell check, “rambly” isn’t even a word.

See? 

Here’s a little known fact about me and Jerry:  we skate.  Twice a week we head down to Cal Skate in Milpitas and skate.  It’s good exercise and we enjoy it.  Jerry especially.  He’s like a completely different person when he’s spinning around that smooth pine floor.  He’s relaxed, he smiles…it’s like he gets in some special Zen Zone. 

We’ve been skating for about two years and last night we celebrated by attending a late night party at Cal Skate.  No, seriously it was late.  Like 11:30pm to 3:30am late.  So it’s with bloodshot eyes and weary fingers that I type this today. 

All the people we know from the normal sessions were there so it was like any other skate night.  Except it was past midnight.  And they had food.  OK, they normally have food at the rink but it’s just popcorn and hotdogs from the snack bar.  This was real food like ribs and mac and cheese.  And they also said grace before serving the food which they never do when we purchase something from the snack bar. 

The music was a little peppier too.  And people were skating with more energy than usual.  The rink was completely full of people skating a they were  going strong when we left at 2:30. 

It was a good skate night.  Except the grace part was a little weird.

I had an unexpectedly pleasant experience with AT&T Customer Service last week.  Unexpectedly because overall my experience as an AT&T Wireless customer has been most undesirable, what with those dropped calls and pathetically slow 3G service (fastest 3G network my ass!). 

But after all this I’m here to say KUDOS to AT&T for connecting me to a call center that is actually located in the U.S.A!  Not only that but KUDOS to the customer service representative Debbie, who not only spoke very clear English but also giggled at my mocking remark about how I was hoping I’d be able to explain my problem before the call dropped. 

Unfortunately the kudos stop there.  Because as helpful as poor Debbie was, the tip she gave me to fix the voice mail problem I was having did not help.  She’ll never know though.  As far as Debbie is concerned my problem with AT&T has been solved.  I even told her that a few days later when she called back to check on me.  I’m not lying either.  As the proud new owner of an EVO with an unlimited data plan from Sprint, all my problems with AT&T are OVER! 

When my friend Ninalei contacted me the other day and asked if I wanted to meet her and our other friend, Kirsten at the 7:15 showing of Sex and the City 2 I was really excited.  It wasn’t the movie I wanted but rather, I just wanted the whole girlfriend experience.  And seeing Sex and the City 2 with your girlfriends is the only way I would recommend seeing this movie. 

Knowing the movie had received bad reviews I was prepared to be disappointed.  As such I was able to tolerate the complete lack of plot, tension and conflict. What I wasn’t prepared for was the sense of fantasy incited by all the glamour and fashion and over the top luxury.  And while the two sex scenes were pretty raunchy, the thing that really turned me on was the depiction of that first class flight to Abu Dhabi, whoa baby! 

In addition to giving me an evening of escape and time to visit with two friends I have not seen in a while, Sex and the City 2 also helped raise my self-esteem a bit.  Due to the last minute nature of the outing I was completely unprepared for it.  In addition to spending the majority of the day feeling like I was carrying around a 10 pound bloat baby I was also in dire need of a gray root touch-up and was in my extra special dowdy-wear.  I walked in the movie theater feeling fat, old and unattractive, but after 2 1/2 hours of seeing Sarah Jessica Parker on the big screen I walked out of there just feeling fat. 

I’ve got a major case of the post-vacation blues and the fact that I still have that weird vertigo thing where I feel like I’m still on a moving ship (What is that anyway? Is there an official term for that syndrome?) does not help.  Maybe this little memoir of our 2 days in South Florida, followed by 7 days on Carnival’s Glory cruising the Western Caribbean will help.

We spent the first few days before the cruise in South Florida.  Our first day we went to the Everglades and then Jerry satisfied my long awaited dream to see the Florida Keys.  Here’s the first thing I saw when we arrived on Key Largo: 

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The next day we went to Miami Beach.  Not my favorite place in Florida, especially after it became the site of an unfortunate Mojito incident henceforth deemed Miami Beach’s Mojito Mayhem of 2010.  I am now well aware of the fact that 2 1/2 mojitos + hot Florida sun do not make for a pleasant afternoon:

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Needless to say my taste for rum, and all hard alcohol in fact, was ruined for the rest of the week….which actually turned out to be a good thing because I now know what all the hoopla about ice cold beer on a hot day is about. 

We actually made it to the ship the next day and spent the next 36 hours at sea.  Unfortunately I have no photos of this.  Even more unfortunate is the lack of video footage documenting a nasty, but entertaining incident involving one mean old lady, her husband and a rascal.  

Our first port of call was Cozumel.  Here’s Jerry in Cozumel: 

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*Note: video footage of Jerry listening to Mariachi will be available at a later date when Jerry finally maps my computer to the Jessopland data server (I’m sure I said that all wrong). 

Our next port of call was Belize.  Here’s Jerry in Belize:

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Here’s Jerry in Roatan:

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No pictures available for Grand Cayman.  It was pouring rain. 

If you are now thinking, “Gee, it looks like they didn’t do much of anything” you would be correct.  While Jerry obsessively checked work email on his crackberri I had plenty of time to sit on deck chairs and read.  In fact, I went on a Meg Cabot bender and within a week’s time read the last two installments of The Princess Diaries series as well as The Boy Next Door.  All in all a fun and very relaxing time. 

carnival gloryOh. My. God.  Exactly two weeks from today Jerry and I will be  boarding a Carnival Cruise ship (the Glory I think) destined for the Western Caribbean.  I’m so excited I can hardly stand it. 

All attempts to direct my excited energy to productive things like getting work done have failed.  I have made some good progress on shopping for evening gowns and bathing suits though. 

This cruise is a Valentine’s Day gift from Jerry.  Jerry isn’t big on Valentine’s Day gifts (or any formal gift giving for that matter) but when he does give, he gives big. 

This particular gift, similar to the Vancouver repositioning cruise of ’05, was announced late Saturday night, February 13, 2010.  It was after a week of late work nights that had worn my patience about as thin as the brakes in the Acura get before Jerry finally gets them replaced.  And similar to Jessopland cruise booking tradition, Jerry told me about it by asking my favorite question, “Honey, what’s your passport number?” 

We are going to be very busy in the next several days getting ready to leave.  (Jerry even gets to spend the next week on a business trip in beautiful Laredo.)  It will likely result in extra trips to our friend, The Liquor King which will surely help out because without us for 10 whole days his sales revenue for the month of May will likely be low. 

Last weekend Jerry upgraded my MSI Wind with Windows 7.  He also did a bunch of other technical stuff to it which for me means my sweet little netbook is not only faster but I can now also play Restaurant City while watching DVRd episodes of The Ghost Whisperer.  But even before the upgrade, when the rigors of Facebook games were too much for my MSI to handle, I loved this thing.  It’s as good as any laptop as far as I’m concerned.

So this post is actually a test run to make sure I properly set up Windows Live Writer.  If I did screw something up I’ll know I’m more technically inept than I realized because Windows Live Writer is a very simple desktop blogging application that makes even me feel smart.

Here’s a very blurry picture of Mrs. B supervising my activities:

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OK, here goes!