123Valerie Strikes Again

Unprecedented Self-Indulgence.

Sunday, December 30, 2007

2008: Salad Dressings Better Watch Out

Behold: The Underpants Kid, my darling nephew, Sam.

Honestly, I don't know where he learns this kind of stuff.

I don't know what is more amusing: the fact that I took this picture at all or that I tried on several pair of underpants to see which photographed the best. The thongs just looked like I had on a headband.

So, alright, New Year's Eve is upon us and I suspect a lot of other folks will be putting, if not underpants, then perhaps lampshades or silly hats on their heads, and good for them.

I try to keep a low profile on New Year's, and this year shouldn't be any different. So far, the plans include board games and some jalapeno poppers. Whoo.

Since I've already blown my resolution to wear more side ponytails in 2008, thanks to the hair cut, and I mastered this year's resolution to become more comfortable cooking big hunks of meat (best pulled pork ever—just sayin'), I'm without a watermark to determine how resolute I will ultimately be next year.

Maybe I will try to learn how to tie knots or be more adventurous in my choice of salad dressing. Always with the bleu cheese. There's got to be more to life.

Speaking of blue, I was walking out of my favorite grocery store, and I saw a few paradoxically bright pennies gleaming in this cesspool of a fountain, and I thought how desperate these people must have been to try out their wishes here. And I wondered if the Fountain Fairies would even think to come by for these penny wishes, given that the fountain was so obviously not in service this time of year.

It made me sad. And then I started thinking about the folks who pin all of their hopes and dreams for the entire year on the outcome of New Year's Eve and whether or not they get to kiss someone.

I am always looking for signs and I am perpetually superstitious, but even I know what a bunch of bunk that is. Your happiness does not lie in making out with random strangers.

Well, I guess that's not always true. Still, I'm not going to go out of my way to try and lock lips with anything except a jalapeno popper. Spicy!

I bid you a Happy New Year and beyond, my pretties.

In the Comments section, tell me who or what you're going to be making out with when the ball drops.

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Thursday, December 27, 2007

Keeping It Real on the Lurve Tip

So, I stumbled onto a radical idea today while I was eating some peanuts.

What if you treated everyone you encountered like a member of your family and, further, told them that you loved them? I mean, everyone--and really, sincerely meant it. The lady at the dry cleaners, that C-you-next-Tuesday who is mean to the lunch delivery guy at work, your neighbors--everyone.

One of my favorite success coaches and hypnotherapists, Michael Neill, brought this little gem to me, and I especially liked the article because he admits how nutty the idea sounds.

As a strong proponent of astrology, crystal healing, affirmations and dancing in fields without your clothes on, as well as maintaining a professional career and paying my taxes, I'm frequently trying to reconcile my worldly self with the crunchy granola 123Valerie within. It ain't easy, so I appreciate it when spiritual and intuitive leaders nod to the realities of life.

Look, I know people think I'm crazy already. Their loss. But wouldn't people really think I was crazy -- and possibly get violent -- if I randomly told them I loved them?

That's exactly what Michael Neill said, too. He was freaked the fook out (thanks Franki Baby) that people were going to feel weird and awkward and punch him in the face.

But you know what? They didn't. They said, "Thank you for connecting with me." And "Thank you for making me feel special."

And "Thanks. That's kind of weird, but thanks anyway, man."

Look, kids, I'm coming off a week of straight love. I felt so much love, I thought I was going to burst, and I ain't just talking about my water bra. (Kidding, you know I don't need one of those). But, between my fambly and my friends and lovely strangers indulging in the Christmas spirit, love abounded.

Don't worry--the pictures of underpants (as well as actual underpants, Krok) are coming. But, sometimes I just can't do the smart-ass crap, and I have to be honest and say: I love you.

I LOVE you fellow bloggers. I LOVE you friends who stop by and read, even though I've probably already told you the story 16 times. I LOVE all of you lurkers who find a piece of yourselves here, and you'll never hear me trying to pressure you to comment -- take what you need. And even if this is your first time here, I LOVE you, too.

Some of you bloggers have been victims of my own love attacks already and, alright, maybe I'm a little out there because, goddamnit: YES, I want to make a connection with you. That's what we're all here for, isn't it? To make sure we all feel a little less alone in the world and a little more appreciated and supported?

Oh? It's not? Just literary masturbation, you say? Well, I'll be.

In the Comments section, tell me who you said "I love you" to today. And if you haven't yet, get ta steppin' on that biz-nasty.

****Hey Gang, I found the original article, below.****


"It is not the threat of death, illness, hardship, or poverty
that crushes the human spirit; it is the fear of being alone and
unloved in the universe."
-Anthony Welsh

Yesterday afternoon, my son and I were pulling into the car park
of our local basketball courts when we spotted a white car
heading towards us at some speed. As the car grew closer, we
could see that the driver's head was turned around, and despite
some pretty impressive honking on my part, she didn't turn back
to face us until after her car piled into the front end of

After checking that my son was alright, I pulled our car into a
parking space and began to walk over to where the woman had
stopped her car. On the way, I somehow had time to reflect on a
practice I began about five years ago...

At the time, I was training to be able to deliver a wonderful
program called "What One Person Can Do" (you can visit
www.oneperson.net to learn more).

The instructor told us that beyond understanding and practicing
the basic content, the prerequisite for delivering the program
was simple. All we needed to be able to do was to love every
human being on the planet, regardless of what mood we were in,
what our day had been like, or what that person was up to (or
had been up to) in the world. When I asked for clarification
about what exactly constituted "loving" someone, he said "simply
treat each person that you come across as if they were a loved
and appreciated member of your family".

To make matters worse (to my way of thinking at the time), he
actually wanted us to be willing to TELL people that we loved
them, even if they didn't have the same last name as us or we
hadn't spent a lot of time with them.

The obstacles and objections to engaging in this process came
into my mind so quickly that it took me awhile to get from a
general feeling of "bleagh!" to the specific thoughts that I
could either accept or reject about what loving people and
expressing that love might mean. When the dust had settled,
here were the key ideas before my mind:

"If you can love everybody, doesn't that make the love you have
for your partner or children less special?"

When I first began exploring this one, it seemed to stand up -
after all, if loving someone was just a choice, what difference
would it make if I was with my wife and kids or someone

However, once I began consulting my experience instead of my
thinking, it became obvious that the reason I was with my family
(as opposed to someone else's) wasn't just because I loved
them, but it was because I enjoyed their company and wanted to
share my life with them. Loving someone doesn't mean you have
to spend all your time with them - it's just a choice about how
you want to be with them while you're with them.

"Won't it make people uncomfortable if I tell them that I love
them when I don't really know them?"

This thought really hooked me in, and I convinced myself for a
time that "it wasn't a kind thing to do" and therefore was
inconsistent with the aim of treating all people with loving
kindness. After a time, I realized that far from being nobly
motivated, the person whose discomfort I was most concerned with
was actually my own.

I decided to put this to the test in a business course I was
leading in the UK. Towards the end of the second day, I went
up to each of the delegates on the program and one by one,
looked into their eyes, found the loving feeling inside my heart
for them, and told them that I loved them.

They were, on the whole, horrified. Or so I thought.

Yet over the next few weeks and months, I heard from nearly
every one of them how touched they had been when they "got" that
I meant it, or the difference it made in their lives when they
turned around and told someone in their life that they loved

One man on the course, who had expressed his discomfort and
displeasure in no uncertain terms on the feedback forms,
e-mailed me almost a year later to share how that incident and
some of the other ideas and techniques we had explored on the
course had let to a complete transformation in the way he lived
his life and ran his business.

Does this mean telling people you love them (and meaning it)
will always lead to a positive life change?

I have no way of knowing. But it has happened so many times for
myself, my students and clients that I would call it a pretty
good bet with an extremely limited downside.

"What about bin Laden? You want me to love bin Laden?"

I addressed this one in "Feel Happy Now!" like this...

"Asking ourselves to love bin Laden, Hitler or any other world
leader who espouses hatred, particularly hatred of those things
we hold dear, is equivalent to asking a novice pianist to play
a Rachmaninoff concerto. Blindfolded. With one hand.

You learn to play the piano by practicing scales. And you learn
to choose love by practicing compassionate understanding - by
recognizing the us in 'them' and the 'them' in us.

The first time I really understood this was when I heard the
story of Marge Knuuti, a nurse and teacher who decided to
volunteer to work in Mother Teresa's Home for the Dying in

After many hours spent on old train tracks and bumpy roads in
the heat of the Indian summer, she arrived exhausted, wanting
nothing more than to jump into a cold shower and collapse into a
cool bed.

Instead, she was greeted by the scene of dozens of people
queuing up outside in the hope of being given the right to die
with dignity and compassion. Her tiredness fell away and she
reached out to a man whose legs had been crushed in the street
and whose life was clearly ebbing away. As she looked into his
eyes brimming with love and compassion, he repeatedly said to
her the word 'Namaste'.

Many hours later, she asked one of the other volunteers what the
word 'Namaste' meant. She was told it was a Sanskrit word

'I honor the place in you where the entire universe resides. I
honor the place in you of love, of truth, of peace, and of
light. And when you are in that place in you and I am in that
place in me, there is only one of us.'"

By the time I reached this woman's car to get her insurance
details, I was back in a place of loving kindness. I could see
her innocence, even as my brain raged against her poor driving
habits and my body shivered in shock. We exchanged details,
wished each other a merry Christmas, and went on our way.

My willingness to love this stranger in the midst of a
circumstance I would never have chosen may not have
earth-shattering consequences. She may never remember the
incident as anything more than a bizarre interlude in the midst
of an increasingly busy life.

There was also nothing saintly about my response. It cost me
nothing to handle it from that place in me, and I duly filed my
claim with her insurance company an hour or so later.

But I do know that it didn't contribute to the un-wellness and
unrest that can poison us from the inside even when we aim our
upset and unhappiness at the world around us.

In other words, it didn't hurt - and it may have helped.

And for that opportunity and possibility, I am truly grateful.

With love,

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Monday, December 24, 2007

Of Puke and Panties: Warmest Holiday Wishes

Yesterday, I puked. A lot. Today, I talked my nephew into putting underpants on his head. I'll have pictures up soon. Of the underpants. Not the puking.

For now, please to enjoy The 'Stache.

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Friday, December 21, 2007

Coming to a Town Near You -- Provided You Live in Kentucky, Ohio or Pennsylvania

For Christmas, everyone is getting homemade beef jerky this year.

Well, not my Nan—Polygrip is no match for my barbecue jerky. But everyone else.

Wait. Not the little ones. I got them toys. Correction: I will get them toys. I hope. I haven't really started shopping yet.

I'm always one of those fools out at the 7-Eleven at noon on Christmas Eve: "Sanjay, do you think a five-year-old would like 'Mountain Pine' or 'Very Vanilla' better?"

Invariably, I go with the vanilla-scented freshener for my nephew's 12-Volt Jeep Wrangler by Fisher Price, while I choose "New Car Scent" for my other nephew's Radio Flyer.

I pick up my niece a copy of Cosmopolitan because it's never too early to start teaching young girls to hate themselves and to bring home the message that "Boys get to have fun and drive things, while you stay home and put on makeup."

Whatever the outcome, I am always reminded that putting off my Christmas shopping until the very last minute is a poor decision.

In my life, I have made many other poor decisions, not limited to but including:

1. Going home with Ryan
2. Attempting to go to cosmetology school
3. Signing the waiver for Girls Gone Wild: Miami Heat
4. Going home with Ryan again
5. Going home with Ryan's sister
6. Affixing bumper stickers to my cars

My pretties, while all of these mistakes have left me with some degree of regret, none are so sticky as my choice in bumper stickers. Well, maybe number 5.

Anyhoo, friends, the point is that I put bumper stickers on my car and, generally speaking, they are stupid.

It started innocently enough with my first car—a 1988 Nissan SX. "Go Devils!" Okay. No problem there. School spirit. Hoo rah.

My problem progressed, however, for my next automobile, a 1996 Ford Aspire I affectionately called Maggie or The Ass Pirate, depending on my mood. The first bad bumper sticker declared "Happiness is Loving a Dog." Yes, kids, I actually had that on my car.

It got worse when I joined a human rights volunteer group a year later and ended up with "Stop Hate Crimes: Honor Diversity" on the back of my Easter-egg mobile. Now, to be fair, both are good messages, but OH MY GOD, could I have been any more of a twag? I really don't think so.

So, with my next "grown up" car, a rapidly declining Oldsmobile Alero still in my possession, I decided no bumper stickers because it has a spoiler.

Even I don't understand my rationale there, but it lasted all of six months until I was at one of my favorite local dive bars, Rascal's Saloon, and it was "Wild Women Wednesday." Except, if memory serves, it was actually a Tuesday, but it's a minor detail, I suppose.

The point is, I got a free T-shirt and a bumper sticker proclaiming "Wild Women Don't Get the Blues."

Well, I'd had some drinks. Is anyone really surprised where this is going? I didn't think so. That bumper sticker was slapped on my car's ass quicker than I was slapping Ryan's sister's ass.

Not too long after, my sister coerced me into adding a Kerry/Edwards 2004 sticker, where it stayed until this very June—that is nigh three years or so AFTER the election passed. So, while the dreams of our country vanished, that Kerry/Edwards sticker remained, I am sad to say.

Until my friend, T, sent me bumper stickers advertising her glass-blowing business with the catchy tag line, "Glass Antixx: Get Blown" which is what every young professional should have on her auto. Now, T's sticker is kind of covering up the politico sticker.

Pretty much all I need is a pot leaf decal on my rear view and then I can get pulled over on suspicion anytime I want to. I guess I could use it as a way to meet guys.

Truly, I love T and her beautiful artwork, so I'm happy to bring the masses to her anyway I can. If I'm lucky, I just might see T this holiday week. As Pistols at Dawn rightfully pointed out, I am embarking on a Rust Belt Tour: Holiday Edition.

First, I'm zipping over to Kentucky to see said Nan with dentures.

Then up to Southern Ohio to spend some time with Megan Jane and her clan.

Then up to mid-Ohio for time with Bonita, Corina, Janee (accent about the e) and Kirstin.

Then up to Northern Ohio to hang with my sisters and our crazy reclusive uncle, and I hope the very preggers Kristina Hot Pants.

And then on to Pittsburgh for a good time with Al Bal and (I hope) some of my other D.C. Sisters.

And then I'm gonna circle out to the Grand Tetons.

So, this Christmas, as millions of children peek out their windows into the dark, snowy night to catch a glimpse of Santa Claus, some very lucky kidders in the Rust Belt may get a special surprise when they see a zippy Oldsmobile roar by, and they'll fall asleep with the words "Get Blown" dancing in their heads.

I hope you all get blown tonight, and every night. Happy Holidays.

In the Comments section, tell me about your bumper stickers, and let me know if you want an "official" Glass Antixx bumper sticker.

Winter sends people postcards; I will send you a bumper sticker.


Monday, December 17, 2007

Shouldering the Burden

Other people have sports injuries, or God-forbid war injuries. I have drinking injuries.

When the weather turns colder, as it's apt to do in mid-December, my right shoulder always starts blazing with pain. We can thank a cat named Jason Smith for that. Actually, we can also thank a cat named Jim Beam for that.

The year was 2003. We were at the retirement party of a pilot/friend Pete, who at 60 had timed out and now had to sit on the sidelines with his Phillapina girlfriend, Ponga. Pete loved Ponga in ways that were uncomfortable and unsettling to most of us.

"I tell ya, last night Ponga and I were having sex, and I could just taste the garlic from dinner coming from her nipples."

Take a minute to think about that.

Okay, back to my drunken mishaps: I was in the cups, and Jason Smith had his back turned to me, so I did what anyone would have and got a running start to jump on his back, assuming he would catch me.

He did not.

I vaulted over him, flipped and landed on my back with a distinct "Ooof!"

(I am purposely ignoring the opening for an "on my back" joke here because I'm really not in the best light as it is, but feel free to come up with your own.)

Anyhoo, I got back up and punched Jason Smith in the tummy for missing me, because it was totally his fault. Totally.

And ever since, on cold, damp days, I wake up and start looking for the Bengay.

Damnit, I know there's a joke in there somewhere, too.

In the Comments section, tell me about your lingering injuries.


Thursday, December 13, 2007

Knocking the Socks Off of Nonagenerians Everywhere

So, the ex-boyfriend is seeing someone new—the "love of his life," according to a reputable source. And I am happy for him—really and truly, no bullshit. (I mean it, A.J. High-five, kid.)

I wouldn't bring it up otherwise because admitting that I did a little online snooping to learn that fact only makes me look like an ass, and the only thing worse than looking like an ass is looking like a bitter ass, so rest assured that I am a happy ass.

A little of the sting was taken away when I received an unsolicited e-mail from eHarmony last night proclaiming "We found your perfect match!"

Whoa ho! What luck!

I clicked to find a profile for Matthew, a college professor from nearby (but just far enough to sate my love of "distance") Elkins, West Virginia. Hey, not knocking—it's a beautiful state and the cost of living is dirt cheap.

I kept reading: He's liberal, witty, genuine—good, good. He likes talking and listening to music—mama likes. Correct apostrophe usage—check!

Oh, and he's 92 years old.

What the hell, eHarmony? I mean, I always knew, thanks to my astrological chart, that on the off chance I ever get married, it will be to an older man (Virgo rules my seventh house) but come on.

Geez. I mean, I know I expressed an interest in learning to knit and how to can things, and, yes, maybe one of my hobbies is quilting, and I love the smell of AspirCream, but throw me a bone here, eHarmony.

Preferably one that doesn't require Viagra or the help of a personal nurse.

In the Comments section, tell me about your favorite old person.


Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Do You Know Where My Pen Is?

When I was younger, someone told me that you could estimate the size of a man's penis by making an "L" shape with his hand, and the distance between the thumb and forefinger would tell you how long the dong was.

I didn't understand the handiness, if you will, of this predictive tool until the early part of my second decade, but it's never failed me.

Big feet lie. Big ears lie. Heck, even big hands lie. But the distance between the thumb and forefinger—true dat.

Following that theory, if I were a dude, my penis would be five-and-three-quarter inches. Very respectable for a chick, thank you very much.

Funny, though—a six-inch-clit isn't so well received.

In the Comments section, tell me how big your hand penis is.

Editor's Note: I don't really have a six-inch clit, sadly. It was something Megan Jane said once when we were teenagers that has always stuck in my head. She probably doesn't even remember it, but it's something I carry with me (we were in Autumn's living room, Schmegs, and you were doing our usual cartoon voice screaming "She had a six-inch-clit!" I can admit here that is was several years after that I finally figured out what a "clit" was. "Ooooooohhhh. I get it ...")

That memory is like the words to that crazy round we always used to sing in sixth grade.

Witchita and the wheat fields of Kansas. Kansas City K is next to Kansas City Mo. Chicago. Crossroads of America. Tallahassee, Tuscaloosa, San Franciso, Guadalupe.


Monday, December 10, 2007

And the Winner Is: I Have No Idea

Well, I can safely say that I kicked all sorts of acoustic ass.

I took the stage with no fear and minimal Jim Beam (relatively speaking, of course) and sang my heart out. Trouble is, they didn't announce who was moving to the next round, so while I'm 99.98% sure I'm advancing, I can't say for sure.

Behold: the shortest video ever and ... it's sideways.

No matter. The important part is that I did it and that Lorelai made out with a hot (HOT!) soldier boy.

I'm all for supporting our troops, if you know what I'm sayin'. And shame on you if you don't.

Thank you to all of you who came out (JennyJenny in da house!) and those of you who wanted to be there—it means a lot, it really does. I don't know where I'm going with this music business, but everything in me says I need to take steps forward, so onward ho! (How apropos.)

In other news, I got my hair did.

I've been kicking around the idea of going shorter for some time, so I walked into a salon Saturday morning and found Annakin (for reals), my very gay, Hong-Kong-ese shear prince.

"Oooooooh. I'm going to give you something fun," he said in his very sing-song voice. It is, indeed, fun. Kicky, if you will. Will you?

But now, I am tired. So, please to enjoy these exquisite photos of my new hair while I go to sleepies. I had to get all "MySpace" photo tactical maneuvers on yins--pardon me for looking like every other angsty 17-year old. 'Cept I have better hair.

I'd hate to have to kick your ass. Doesn't mean I won't do it, though.

Why yes, I did, in fact, try to make my hair match the walls. I gave up long ago on the curtains matching the drapes, though.

The angle of my dangle. Just want ya'll to know, that's a portrait of a bare-breasted woman behind me. I incorporate boobs in every facet of my life: writing, cooking, decorating, etc., etc. ad nauseum.

Don't make me come in there, what with me wearing a clip and all.

In the Comments section, tell what you're moving forward with and also what you think of my new hair.

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Friday, December 07, 2007

A Shameless Self Plug

I was rereading some of my old journals last night, which is always enlightening.

Aside from all of the "Oh my God, Chad is so hot" and "Oh my God, I hate my hair" entries, I found a snippet of foreshadowing from 1999:

I hate being a waitress. I think I need to become a sexy, folk chick. I guess that means I'll have to learn how to be sexy and/or play guitar.

Shortly thereafter, my folks bought me a guitar and I commenced learning the versatile G chord, as well as how to use my cleavage to its best advantage.

Still, I think it's funny that, at age 19, with no exhibited musical ability and never having sung outside of the shower, I simply decided I was going to be some saucy singer/songwriter. Sure, why not?

Well, there's one reason.

Despite what you may believe, I am inherently secretive with my thoughts and feelings, such as the thoughts and feelings one might need to share whilst writing a song. So, for many years, I did not share. Not at all. Not one tiny bit.

A lot of my nearest and dearest were surprised to learn that I even played guitar.

But I got brave a few years ago and answered an ad for a female singer/songwriter, which led to a partnership with a super talented guitar dude. But then he sort of fell for me and I was in no danger of falling back, and things went south real quick, but not before we took third in a regional singer/songwriter contest.

There was also the time I got brave and entered a local singer/songwriter contest but had no idea that it was being judged by a panel of very Christian judges. A good 103% of my songs have a nod to whiskey and at least 79% mention one-night stands. Whoops.

I walked away with fourth place out of 40 and the weirdest compliment I have received to date: "You have such a beautiful voice … You could win so many people to the Lord if you just sang the right songs."

Since then, being an adult has sort of gotten in the way of my folk-and-roll ambitions, but, while it's taken me a lot of time, I can finally admit, "Yes, I write songs that I sing," without shrieking and running away, hands flailing.

In fact, for all of you D.C. locals, I will be practicing some not shrieking and running away this Sunday, Dec. 9, around 10 p.m. at Arlington's Four Courts for an acoustic "battle" of the bands.

It's just a simple two-song set (10 minutes), with the winner securing a spot to perform at a longer set during the local St. Patty's day celebration, but to me, scaredy-cat supreme, those 10 minutes on stage have consumed my mind for weeks now.

So, come on out on Sunday to see my knees knocking and me knocking back the drinks—I'll be there to enjoy the whole showcase from 8 p.m. onward but, again, I'll be going on around 10-ish.

My dear Justin P. says real artists are never truly comfortable with their creations and will always second-guess themselves, but if you are called to be an artist, the drive to share will overpower the fear. Let's hope so, or else it's going to be a long 10 minutes up there.

In the Comments section, tell me what you have trouble sharing. Go 'head. It's okay.

Oh yeah. I'm also on MySpace and stuff.

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Thursday, December 06, 2007

Doing the Nude-tron Dance

So, last week I showered naked at the gym. In front of people.

Yeep! I did! It's taken me a full five days to write about it!

Despite my affinity for getting naked in general and in front of friends, in particular, this is the first time I have deliberately gone sans clothes in a public setting. God save my soul, but I think it was overdue. Just sayin'.

I took a nice long sauna, followed by a mellow shower and, okay, maybe I got a little shy drying off (because no one looks hot with a towel drying all of their lady bits), but gosh dernnit, I showed my bare breasts to women who didn't know me and whom I had no desire (what-so-ever) to make out with.

That's huge.

Kind of like my boobs.

Except not really. Now that I've lost a few pounds. Which has been all in my boobs. Not fair.

In the Comments section, tell me about the last time you got naked in public or the what's unfair in your life.


Tuesday, December 04, 2007

Tell Me Who Your Friends Are, and I'll Tell You Who You Are (And How Much I Love Corn Nuts)

This Saturday was Megan Jane's birthday. I am not a very good friend when it comes to birthdays, so I am three days late posting this and I am still making her gift, which should be ready some time in February (2010).

I have known Megan Jane since we were nine, better than 18 years. I'm looking forward to our 20-year friend anniversary like some of you look forward to tater-tot day in the cafeteria. And by "some of you," I mean me so, really, Megan Jane and I will probably be celebrating our two decades of friendship with tater tots. Clazzy.

I think the 30-year anniversary is marked by gifts of corn dogs.

Here is a picture of lovely Megan Jane and some gentleman's very curvy tongue, which I just ran across (the picture, not the tongue. Dernit):

I was just thinking of all my favorite Megan Jane-isms and "Hey, You with the dreads—come with us" always wins out. Oh, Megan Jane, you boxcar child, you.

Oh, wow: A nice segue photo of Me, Adelka Ann and Megan Jane to transition to this weekend's trip to Connect-i-cut, which was a resounding success.

I really spread my wings on this latest trip, my pretties. I tried the Chile Picante Corn Nuts; it's always fun to embrace new cultures.

Kids, say what you want about New Jersey, but that state had the only rest stop to offer fresh cut flowers:

Which is way, way better than what New York had to offer:

So, as is customary when hanging with Adelka Ann and Justin P., there was theatre, good food and dancing.

Except the theater was the most glittery production of Dickens' A Christmas Carol I have ever seen. (I didn't even know they had jazz hands in Dickens' day.)

Oh, and the food was fake (backstage props for A Christmas Carol, which amused me more than they should have, given my 27 years).

Fake. Fake. Fakity Fake meats. Goddman, they can do anything these days, can't they?

Only the dancing was real.

Adelka Ann and "Joe" breaking it down one time.

We mostly just hung at Adelka and Justin's farm. The juxtapositions of art and farming implements always make me smile.

Just four hours after I took this photo, I got waylaid by an ice storm, and I'm not talking Rob Van Winkle, kiddos. I had to extend my stay in good ole Connecticut, which was just fine by me.

But now, after an arduous drive home, I am back in the bosom of Maryland, and while it's always nice to be nestled in someone's breasts, I can't help but look forward to the holiday season, which will bring a friend World Tour of Greenup, KY; Cambridge, Canton and Cleveland, OH; and maybe (just maybe, if I've been a good girl) a stop in Pittsburgh, PA.

'Cause real playas know to hit all of the hotspots.

In the Comments section, tell me where you've been or where you're going.

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