Inferior Imitator

ep·i·gone n. A second-rate imitator or follower, especially of an artist or a philosopher.

Thursday, January 24, 2008

Someone needs to remind me not to check my 401(k) when the stock market is tanking. Losing 10% of one's account is a little disconcerting. Good thing I'm not retiring for another 30-40 years.

Speaking of tanking, it is really cold. I hate single digits. I think last night, it was 15 below, without the wind chill. I was hoping after the crappy December we had, we might get off lightly in January. No such luck.

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

I was going to come blog something, but in the three minutes it took me to log on, I forgot what it was. This is my life.

I think I'm going to go up to Alaska with my parents this year instead of with my brother. Lew doesn't think he can get the requisite time off his job/classes, and my parents are going up in June. I seriously doubt the wisdom of my sister and I spending a great deal of time alone together, and I'm not sure Matt counts. We get along much better than we did when we were kids, but it is still way too easy for us to grate on each others' nerves after a given period of time. We never should have shared a room. At any rate, if I do so, I'll be able to go to Hayden's baptism, and that's important to me.

I can really tell the difference after wearing my night guard for a couple weeks. When I wake up, my head is much less tense. I'm not positive that I grind my teeth, but I know that I at least clench, because there are now dents in the guard where there weren't before.

I'm eager to go back to TKD tomorrow. I haven't been exercising, and I've just been exhausted. I'm also looking forward to finding out if I've solved my little heat exhaustion problem. Here's hoping!

Monday, January 21, 2008

Ack! I read my last library book yesterday, and the library is closed today. I literally read the entire book yesterday (A Scent of Shadows, by Vicki Pettersson - I'm always on the lookout for new supernatural series, and this one was enjoyable) while doing laundry. I didn't watch any television at all, and it's amazing how much that stretched my one-day weekend.

Edit: That'll teach me to assume. I just went on to the library website, and they're open today from 10 to 6. [doh]

Monday, January 14, 2008

Oh my gosh, I actually won something.

When I got home from work, there was an long box on my doorstep. The only thing I was expecting in the mail was a book I bought off eBay, so I was thinking, "This has got to be the most inefficient packaging I've ever seen." But no! When I opened it, it was a poster!

I saw the contest by FOX linked to by Whedonesque, and then saw that the prizes were limited to 500 per poster (see all four here). Since the posting had been up for a while, I figured I was out of luck, but tried anyway. And here it is! For all the worries of the box, some asshat sure dinged the poster up good. But this is FOX we're talking about, so I really shouldn't be surprised.

Now, where to put it...

Saturday, January 12, 2008

This is going to be a rough tax season, I can tell already. One, Congress hasn't passed the AMT patch yet, so we're in for a compressed season. Two, I'm still working on an assurance engagement that kicks my butt every year, and this year is no different, and I hate it. Three, I'm...lethargic. About everything in my life right now. It's all the same old, same old, and I'm bored of it all. Pretty hypocritical of someone who hates change, but there it is.

I wish I knew how to fix it.

Thursday, January 03, 2008

I don't usually do two posts in one day, but if I don't post now, I'll forget.

I finally decided at about 5:45 who I was going to vote for. I was up in the air between Barak Obama and Ron Paul, and since they're in different parties, I had to decide which location to go to. My deciding factors were that I was already registered as a Democrat, and I'd never been to a Democratic caucus before. I went to a Republican one in 1996 when I was 17, because it was all new and exciting (no Democratic caucus that year, since Clinton ran unopposed, so really no decision there).

One thing about Republicans, is that they sure do caucus more efficiently. If the guy had just had a megaphone or something, it would have helped immensely. But we started out with everyone checking in, registering for the party if necessary, and getting a numbered card. Then there were some statements read: give us money, there's statements by various local Democrats running for office in the back, yadda yadda yadda. We took about 10 minutes to decide that 44 people was the 15% threshold for viability. Then each campaign had two minutes for a statement. Then things got really loud and incomprehensible.

All voters went to the area of the room designated for their first choice candidate. There was a preliminary count (since we were the biggest group in the room, we filed in and out of the room to get a more accurate count. Probably not very legal, but the high school cafeteria was so HOT, we had to open the doors). Then the preliminary count was announced (Obama 115, Edwards, 49, Clinton 47, Biden 30, and the rest were in the teens and single digits), and people got a chance to go around and try and convince others to join their groups. This went on for about half an hour to forty-five minutes, and every once in a while, there would be cheers and clapping as people joined other groups. Finally, a final total was tallied to the three viable candidates: Obama 144, Edwards 53, and Clinton 51. So Obama got two delegates from my precinct and the other two got one. Which pretty much reflects what happened in the rest of the state: Caucus Results.

Then there were some elections for committees and delegates and we were done. This all lasted from 6:30 to 8:45. HOT. Frankly, I'm just glad the phone calls will stop. I've done my civic duty, now leave me alone. In all seriousness, though, I'm honored to be part of the first in the nation, and I hope we did our best for the rest of the country.

I went with vanity and chose the composite filling. I looked in the mirror, and you can't even tell there's anything different there. Man, I'm glad I've never had cavities, because if it hurt that much just filing off edges, they would have to put me out for anything involving the root. Or I could be a baby.

I have so far been successful in keeping water in my mouth, even though my bottom lip feels like a balloon and I tried to shove it in my mouth while I was eating.

Wednesday, January 02, 2008

I don't know what it is about Tuesdays lately, but I spent the entire day yesterday in bed. Not all of it sleeping, I got through an entire book, but I was just so exhausted.

I had a really nice Christmas. It was awesome having the whole family together, although I never did see the video of Emily suprising Mom. I hear there was some hiding and quite a few tears, though. I left my camera at home [doh!], so I'm depending on others for my pictures.

I made figgy pudding Friday from a recipe I heard on NPR. It was really good, like fruitcake, only less dense. Mom hates dried fruit, so she only tried a little of the cake part and gave me this compliment: "I think it would be delicious if I liked it." Dad ate most of it, and I got quite a few compliments. It might become a tradition, especially since it means Mom won't have to make fruitcake any more.

(credit: Emily)

Saturday was Ervin family Christmas, and Sunday and Monday were mostly lazing around, I think. Christmas Eve was at Uncle Tim and Aunt Joyce's this year, since Grandma is having some health problems right now, and wasn't feeling up to it. (We're hoping this month's surgery will solve her most serious problem.) We took time out for a family portrait in our nice clothes.

Matt, Em, Mom, Me, Lew, Dad (credit: Mom's camera)

Christmas morning is present opening for us. We've been recording these since 1987, when we borrowed Uncle Jerry's big old camera. I know this only because after we'd finished opening presents, we watched that first one. I was nine, Em was five, and Lew was not quite three. I was already in my awkward stage (horrible home-cut bangs, huge pink 80's glasses), and Em and Lew were cute. It also had Ervin Christmas on it (where I was not quite so alone with the awkwardness), and there were more than a few tears when Grandpa appeared on the screen.

We've gone digital now, but some things require low-tech solutions. Lew's yard stick extends the boom.

(credit: Mom)

We also battled the weather. There was that big ice storm on the 11th that started it all, and we've had two feet of snow since. The last storm was right when we were trying to send Em and Matt off. They were to leave the day before the storm hit us, but their plane was coming in from Denver, which already had the storm, so it was late and they would have missed their connecting flight to Anchorage. They ended up leaving a day late, but an entire day in airports got them home.

I have to get some work done today, so I'll leave you with an Iowa winter:

(credit: Mom)