aunthippie: old hippies in tie dye (Default)
Most everybody wants to earn their wisdom the hard way, and not have it handed down to them. Well, tough shit, kids. Aunt Hippie's doling it out and you're gonna listen. And like it.

FAQ:

So who the hell are you, anyway?
We're an anarcho-syndicalist commune. We take it in turns to act as a sort of executive officer for the week.
Actually, we're Smithies. Angry former Smithies in our thirty-mumbles with a firm belief that there are things such as FACTS, and that those facts make a difference in determining what's right and wrong, and that the media isn't so good about providing them lately.
We are also full of OPINIONS, which we enjoy voicing loudly over adult beverages whilst waving fine tobacco products as we frantically gesticulate in our ire.
We are also also full of SNARK, which shall be laid out as we see fit.

If you cannot distinguish these three things without assistance, go 'way.

Ok, so, you're starting another bitingly witty and satirical political blog. How unique of you. Why bother?
It's been proven all scientifical-like that keeping our opinions to ourselves leads to badness. Writing a blog is cheaper than therapy, even after you account for the possibility of carpal tunnel.

Right. Are there rules, perchance?
Why yes, yes there are! They are fairly simple:
1. Thou shalt back thy shit up with CITATIONS, bitches. I don't care if you say I'm wrong. I might work up some give a damn if an expert says I am.
2. Thou shalt not insult the character of other readers. Public figures are fair game; however, said insults shall be based on their actions, and not the fact that they look like they stepped out of a Brylcreem ad or the fact that they are in posession of a uterus in addition to being breathtakingly stupid. I'm sure we can all find plenty of ammunition without resorting to grade-school taunts. Racially insensitive language, demeaning terms for women and the like will earn you a fine smiting with the BANHAMMER.
3. Thou shalt not cast doubt on the divinity of Saint Molly, patroness of ass-whoopin' smart ladies everywhere.

Anything else, then?
Don't go out in a shitstorm without galoshes, and never start a land war in Asia.
aunthippie: old hippies in tie dye (Default)
http://www.salon.com/2017/04/26/trumps-newly-unveiled-anti-immigrant-hotline-bombarded-with-reports-of-space-aliens/

I'm not even gonna bother speculating on what might go wrong here, because so many brilliant science fiction authors have just covered the idea of an evil government getting its citizens to rat one another out for scraps or just for the joy of pure meanness to death already, and if there's one thing Aunt Hippie hates to be, it's redundant.

[Although I'm starting to think that, after every high schooler reads these books, we ought to do a psych eval and weed out the ones who were rooting for the bad guy, send 'em out as space explorers or somethin' like that, the key point bein' that we strap 'em to a rocket and get them as far away from decent folk as possible.]

I'm not lying when I say that ridiculous trolling such as what happened almost immediately here is Aunt Hippie's favorite thing, right after plain noodles with garlic butter, and it fills my heart with a warm feeling that might even pass for hope in our species on a good day. But at the end of the day when we've all had a good laugh, there's still someone in power who actually thought this was a fine idea.

We don't need more chaotic good little revolutionaries running around - ok, scratch that, what the hell, let's double 'em and see what happens- so much as we need ordinary, decent folk to stop and say "Y'know, instead of droppin' a dime on Eduardo* or Abdul, over there, maybe I ought to just go have a beer on the front steps with him, get to know him a little."

*Or Wong or Giovanni or Stanislasz or Patrick, if you want to both be retro and acknowledge that blamin' the last guy through the door ain't exactly cutting edge, ideologically speaking.
aunthippie: old hippies in tie dye (Default)
I'm sure most of y'all have seen the current back and forth between the NYT opinion piece and the Medium rebuttal and there's enough collective butthurt between the comments on the two to keep proctologists in business for centuries, but I'm gonna throw in anyway, because this is a Big Thing for your esteemed author.

I grew up dressed in boy hand-me-downs because the 5 boy cousins that were older than me were vaguely my shape, whereas the one girl cousin who's got a year on me was a spindly little thing (waif-like, spindly, tall and delicate being words that have never in their life so much as waved hello in passing to Aunt Hippie's physique.) I also wore out a couple of sets of Wonder Woman underoos, because, let's face it, who wouldn't if given the chance? And I was prone to taking the yellow ruffled curtains in the back bedroom and draping them around myself with the help of some spare yarn and belts and whatnot to form what I was certain was the most elegant princess dress ever. I had a pair of red patent mary janes that I squeezed my feet into for two sizes past what was reasonable and cried when I had to pass them down to my sister.

I might have been tempted into long hair if I'd had a chance to get used to it, but a babysitter decided that the only cure for my wild tangle of curls was a Dorothy Hamill cut (and clearly I've betrayed my age with that; for those unfamiliar the choice of reference dates me at "too old to have any fucks left to spare.") Enter a decade of people assuming that I was a boy, to my perpetual annoyance- but then again, I never did get annoyed enough to grow my hair out.

The first time "tomboy" was applied to me, some time in the late 70s, it was such a blessed thing to know that there were lots of me, enough that we even had a name, and maybe- if I bumped into any- some kind of secret club that we could all ride our bikes and climb a tree to get to. Because it was the late 70s, and according to my parents and the burgeoning sentiment in the world, girls could be literally anything they wanted. Of course I was a girl, because girl didn't have to mean that people would tut-tut athleticism or bravery or outspokenness or a knack for taking things apart any more.

Sally Ride. Wonder Woman. Mary Lou Retton. Sandra Day O'Connor. Geraldine Ferraro. Laura Ingalls and Caddie Woodlawn. Helen Keller. Florence Nightingale. I ate up their stories and let them nourish my soul, confident that by my quarter century mark and a new millennium, women would be astronaut-lawyer-doctor-president-moms, all of us.

[Aunt Hippie could write an entire screed on the frantic backpedaling that's been apparent since her college years, but, in the interests of not setting anything on fire with her gaze, will refrain. For now.]

Of course, some of the sheen came off with age, as it does. My 7th grade math teacher, after I had handily completed the pre-algebra exam with the best grades in my year, grudgingly admitted that I was good at math "for a girl" and that I could be a nurse! or maybe even a math teacher! I brushed him off because he also pined for the days when he could send boys home for having hair that touched their collar- clearly this was not someone who knew what was what.

Then the boys, on whom I was crushing desperately, telling me that it was so great that they could talk to me, and wasn't it so great that I could speak girl too, so I could help them out with my hot friends? When bisexuality hit like a ton of bricks when I was 16, realizing that all my girl-crushes were nothing so much as visual representations of the kind of delicate yet interesting alternapixie that I wished so desperately to be, and lamenting for the first time that I was bad at being a girl. The kid sister who effortlessly strode into popularity and conventional beauty, got kissed before me, and had to fend boys off with a stick.

Gradually, though I had never noticed nor cared, the volume of people who felt compelled to tell me how I was Doin It Rong, no matter what "it" was, got loud enough that it started to penetrate my blissful obliviousness. In response, I adopted the "fuck this shitty one horse town, I will leave and I will be smart and fit in and never see any of you again" of the sort that writes poetry and smokes clove cigarettes and wears her transgressions like a point of pride.

[Aside: We are, my teen tomboy and I, watching Daria on DVD. My high school life in cartoon form, let me show you it.]

The one that stuck most was the first time I was betrayed by my own- a college chemistry prof who was outraged that I would dare take advanced chem as a liberal arts major, because something something owed it to my gender to prove that women could do math and science, and my dilettante ass was undermining Real Women everywhere. And the less said about my experience of Mandatory Sisterhood that was somehow supposed to magically override the class barrier between me and my future Leaners-In sistren, the better.

I had children. I rolled my eyes at the Earth Mama Goddess types who reclaimed their inner power via their uterus. This time the gap between me and the women I was surrounded with was in age; most of the women in my parenting class were a few years younger than my mother, and talked about how to navigate career pauses and hiring nannies.

Then my ex (one of oh so many reasons why he has that title) told me that I was frigid and no longer attractive, oh and also he would prefer to be humiliated and beaten and tied up and have things shoved up his ass, several items of which I had expressed negative interest in- so he wanted to open our relationship. I agreed, mostly out of guilt that he was unhappy.

I grew bitter from a brief foray into trying to be conventionally attractive- I lost the baby weight, I grew my hair, I wore heels and fashionable clothing, and yet somehow, they Knew. Men everywhere passed me over in favor of women who did this every day without a second thought. So I abandoned it in favor of the look that I like to call the Pre-Emptive Fuck Off. And suddenly I was the darling of the alternative set, and it felt like I had found my place.

I started to become That Girl who brags about how she finds it easier to be friends with men. There were a few friendships that were fraught with Unresolved Sexual Tension - both one-sided and mutual- but honestly the notion that it was impossible to avoid never made much sense to me, since clearly as a Sparkly Unicorn Bisexual I had to be able to have *some* gender of friend without immediately hopping in the sack (although as everyone knows, we are both indecisive and greedy.) And truth be told, it was my female friendships that were more likely to manifest from stealth crushes.

I got into restoring and maintaining cars and delighted in having a wedge between myself and women who were naturally good at being women, while at the same time secretly despairing that it was forever out of reach for me. I also delighted in the transgression of striding into male spaces as something other than a decorative object, and vented my righteous fury every time I was mistaken for one.

But I remember an incident, one that I thought little of at the time, that was the first beam of sunlight on the horizon: having spent most of the day involved in prep for an engine swap in my boyfriend's car, the Men arrived to help finish up. The engine, no matter what we did, was not sitting so that it would align with the transmission. I looked and shoved and looked some more and decided that for whatever reason, the angle of the mounts and the subframe made it impossible. Not So, they cried, I clearly did not know enough, and they stood around each side of the engine bay to prod it with their metaphorical Penises of Innate Knowledge and I shrugged my shoulders and went upstairs to make hot cocoa. 4 hours later, they realized that the wrong engine mounts had been ordered, to absolutely no apology, and I raised one eyebrow and shrugged again and regretted nothing about choosing to go inside and get warm after laying in slush for the better part of a winter's day.

A few years later I was attending electrical apprentice training with a bevy of 19 year old boys, after deciding that a building trade would hit the sweet spot of not having to conform to office norms, being able to move physically, and yet also paying enough to cover things like "eating" and "a car that runs" while allowing some mild to moderate use of brains, which had been growing skittery from disuse. Having 11 years and an actual job history over these kids, along with a legitimately foul mouth and drama allergy, the elephant in the room was maybe like knee-high by the end of the year. They called me mom (and recoiled in TMI horror when I counted backwards to let them know that only one of them was young enough for that to be physically possible) and counted on me to stare blankly at them when their dipshititude regarding women got too out of hand, but even though I was clearly physically female, I was operating under the "not a REAL girl" regulations.

Fast forward to my late 30s, and I have finally ended up where I belong, in an engineering job surrounded by sarcastic bastards. It's still a sausage fest, and even worse, it's a conservative sausage fest compounded by New Jersey's insane attachment to gender norms.

I spent a fair amount of time wondering if, in fact, I was in the wrong box somehow. Dating women as someone who looked butch but was really a cleverly disguised evil fence-sitter was a lesson in frustration. I saw half a dozen friends transition, including one for whom I'd have gladly traded bodies- the manic pixie dreamgirl crush of my first year at college. When even people who turn out to be transmen are better at femme than you, well.

One of the first times I abandoned my sarcastic tshirt and cargo shorts/pants uniform, I wore a shaped black knit jacket, a black cami, and black cropped tuxedo pants to work. Our sales engineer, the dude who sulked for a week at not being voted the hottest, looked me up and down and said "Look at you! You look... badass." Yes, thank you for that slightly redeeming recovery from being startled that I can girl on occasion.

And then something in me just snapped. A year later, when I was 6 months into a promotion, fighting imposter syndrome like mad, struggling to make my liberal, female, non-degreed self acceptable to my coworkers, I hit the wall of Fuck It. I was here. I was doing a goddamn good job. And I was going to stop apologizing for half my existence right that very second, so help me goddess.

I wore dresses. I wore sequinned leggings. (They remain the only piece of clothing that male engineers have *ever* noticed and remarked on in my entire experience, which is a pretty decent sample size.) I spoke up. And at no point did I meekly ask permission to exist as a female in their space, because fuck that, it's my space too. Gentle reader, Aunt Hippie is not exaggerating at all to say that there were faint echoes of a heavenly chorus, replete with sunbeams and cherubim and trumpets, as this lack of apology started to really, really sink in.

I did not have to pretend to be One Of The Guys. I did not have to "tone it down," or make myself deliberately unsexy, or deliberately sexy. I did not have to stick seventeen qualifiers in front of any statement of belief I made. And if my experience was different than theirs, you bet your ass I said so without dancing around the subject of why that might be. I walked right up to that damned elephant, threw a sparkly hot pink blanket on it, and rode it around the room in triumph.

Now, a lot of this is owing to a natural decline in one's supply of fucks, and a stricter rationing of same, as one approaches one's 40s. But honestly, it has taken me this long to learn how to actually embrace and enjoy being an adult woman who can believe that girls can be themselves, just like my little 5 year old inner princess-gymnast-astronaut-doctor-President was once upon a time. And I'll be damned if anyone takes that away from me ever again.
aunthippie: old hippies in tie dye (Default)
"Mayor R. Carey Davis of San Bernardino said he had received a call from the White House and that President Trump offered to help “in any way possible.” Betsy DeVos, the secretary of education who has supported Mr. Trump’s promise to ban gun-free zones around schools, wrote on Twitter asking “everyone to join me in keeping the victims and all those impacted by today’s senseless violence in your prayers.”"

In Yet Another School Shooting, an estranged husband opens fire on his wife's special ed classroom. Betsy DeVos would like to offer her thoughts and prayers. Well ain't that thoughtful of her.

Not as thoughtful as taking back her asinine remark about needin' to pack heat in case bears attack your suburban classroom, mind.

Not as thoughtful as meaningful gun reform.

Or domestic violence reform.

But, go ahead, Betsy, you do you and keep them thoughts and prayers comin', maybe God will hear you and do us all the favor of zappin' some smart in your noggin. Or some shut in your yap.
aunthippie: lit neon sign reading "nope" (nope)
I. I am bored with my jerb. No frenetic pace, no puzzles to solve, ample time to get my not terribly challenging tasks done, which leads to my inner procrastinatrix just taking the fuck OVER (oh hai there, blog and BBS and unrestricted web access! how YOU doin'?) and... I mean, I am getting things done that they want, and feeling a minor cheering burst of confidence that I am, in fact, eminently capable of all of them, but meh.

And then boredom leads to depression leads to my near-endless capacity for self-defeat and I still wonder why I agreed* to leave the best job ever, complete with sarcastic genius boss at whose feet I could sit and learn shit forever (this was, in fact, pretty much the career path he planned out for me - hang out, learn shit, and do more and more of it as I learned. This is pretty much my concept of heaven, y'all.)

*[Ostensibly I have chosen to preference Boy's career over mine because he makes a substantial amount more and has things like free cars and 15% match on his 401(k) and paid education and pretty much unlimited growth potential, whereas I was one notch below the top already at a company that pays decent but whose true perks are far more insubstantial, and consist of things like "sarcasm" and "not-shitty coworkers" and "don't have to look adult or professional unless strangers are coming." I'm sure I could have grown the responsibilities of the position, and been fairly compensated for same, but nobody was taking over the world from there.

Also, he's been ambitious his whole life long, whereas I'm just looking for something that gets me out of the house, pays enough that household finances don't involve any magic tricks by necessity, and engages at least 1/2 to preferably 3/4 of my brain.
This change is telling me that yes, actually, I am ambitious in the sense that I want to be taken seriously and recognized as not just good at what I do but also good at something that people consider relatively high-falutin' because let me tell you, nobody has a lick of respect for the Best Damn Asswiper that ever wiped. But not in the sense that I want to tear my way up the corporate ladder to management; I want to find a niche full of delicious puzzles and be left the fuck alone there to tinker with some decent and like-minded people...yeah, about that meant to be an engineer thing.

Also, societal expectations, default blah blah, endless guilt if he turned down his dream and went to a (still better paying than mine, goddamn it) mid-level beige type job so we could stay in a state neither of us are particularly fond of just so I could stick with a company who will let me sit at the big kids' table someday and who generally regard me as a precocious and pretty damned useful child not-male** not-engineer.

**{Is there a word, equivalent to the god-awful 'oreo' or 'twinkie' for someone who is outwardly female but gets told all the time that she's one of the guys? You know, the good minority.}]

II.I grow weary of only having friends accessible via electronic widget. Not that they aren't all awesome, but I am about a 13 on a 1-10 scale of extroversion and I just want to go do things with people not already living in my household. See above re: boredom > depression > endless capacity for self-defeat.

III. I am considering medicating the ADHD to try and mitigate this, but bottom line is that the voice in the back of my head keeps saying "You're perfectly able to adult when the job is right for you; why the fuck are you medicating yourself into one that's wrong?" Except I don't know that I can find the right one out here; the fast-whirling chaos seems to be strictly a northeast thing, and anyhow I don't have enough industry experience to pick and choose just yet and realistically I need to suck it up and find a way to function at my best here instead of just going through the motions which is a short trip to mediocreville.

So, in summary, meh.

y'all.

Jun. 6th, 2016 11:32 am
aunthippie: old hippies in tie dye (Default)
I have a job that allows for typing shit during the workday and doesn't restrict access to anything, on account of my being all managerial and on my honor. (Don't worry, Imma get all my shit done. I'm a big girl.)

So, watch this space, I guess, is my point. And in an election year, no less!

*wanders off singing hallelujia*
aunthippie: A white red-headed infant winks and grins. (wink)
Since I need the writing practice, I asked [livejournal.com profile] pisicutsa to give me an age, and then write about relationship/s, fears and best memory from that age. So, twenty-two....eeeesh.

At 22 I was newly married and a new mom. Soooooooo, that pretty much covers my fears- somebody handed me this wailing fragile pink thing and I was supposed to use some kind of magical learnings emanating from my uterus to know what to do with it? I was scared I was going to break him. I was scared that I was going to flail cluelessly for the next 18 years. And mostly, I was scared as hell to realize that the guy who thought now was a great time to have a kid liked the theory way, way better than the practice.

The best memory is the Smile- my sister was taking a child development class for Anthro at the time and she read that babies liked toys with faces, but she was a broke-ass college student, so she took a yellow post-it note and drew a smiley face on it. I stuck it to the underside of the sunshade on his stroller, and I swear to you that the post-it was C's favorite toy for months. It's still stuck to a page in his baby book- but that entire summer walking (and walking, and walking- somebody was colicky) miles a day with the kidlet and watching him stare at the smile was just awesome.

Shoes

Nov. 3rd, 2012 07:27 pm
aunthippie: old hippies in tie dye (Default)

Dearest lazywebs, I need help. I need a brand of shoes that is kind to someone who needs to walk as close to barefoot as possible, that aren't Vibrams because they aren't allowed at work. The Bass boat shoes were ok, it took 4 months before my ankles started to hurt. Running shoes that are pitched for a heel-strike stride are murder on my poor widdle knees. Anything with any kind of heel, in fact (including that little subtle half-inch ramp business) throws off my knees within a week, with hips and back following not long after.
For added challenge, I have wide feet and ridiculously high insteps, so some brands of shoe (ok, a lot of brands) just plain don't fit.
I'm about ready to just go to all Converse, all the time, but they're insufficient for 8h on my feet. Also, something that passes for grownup would be swell.
Ideas?


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aunthippie: old hippies in tie dye (i hate our freedom)

The next person who critiques Obama (who has most certainly done things I disapprove of, yes) by saying that both candidates are exactly the same is getting a world-class bitchslap, I tell you what.
As a citizen with both a uterus and a daughter, I can say in no uncertain terms that only one candidate has even a modicum of respect for our rights, and that is an enormous and entirely unsubtle distinction. Don't insult me by pretending not to notice that in order to score cynicism points.

It's like claiming that eating a Twinkie and drinking Drano are exactly the same because they're both bad for you.
Obama will continue Bush-era policies that detain people illegally, barely dent the status quo of corporate power and greed, and cede points to a bunch of uncompromising asshats in the name of getting other shit done. Those are actions of a reasonable, thoughtful person who can't fix everything that is wrong.
Romney will disenfranchise you, gut regulation and the social safety net and turn the country over his bazillionaire cronies to rape and pillage every last dime- and then make you prove it was a forcible rape.

THESE ARE NOT TWO SIDES OF THE SAME COIN.

This is a decent yet flawed leader vs. a complete raving fucktard LOON.

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aunthippie: cartoon martini with fuse and lighter (molotov)
Listen up, bubbelehs.

This economy thing? The no-capital-gains-tax? This is not about how you would want to be treated if you were Saint Noble Job-Creator, who (if he were you) ought to be rewarded for his Contributions to the foundations of American Holy Capitalism with those tax breaks that allow him to keep allllllllll his monies on account of the overwhelming nobility of having used some of it to make more of it.

Let's be honest here, shall we? Most of us are using our money to keep body and soul together, maybe under a roof even, and whatever disposable income remains goes to our preferred distractions from reality. Put even more plainly, we are not them, darlins, no matter how much we believe that we'll get there someday with hard work and a little bit of pixie dust.
aunthippie: old hippies in tie dye (hippie)
Here I've been looking for something to get full-on snarky about and he goes and interrupts my weekend with his choice of vice president.

So is it pandering to the far-right that has become the loudest voice of the Republican party?

Is it a return to the age of the Robber Baron?

Is it a serious case of kingmaking by the hype machine, and a sign that Romney is already desperate?

Aunt Hippie is casting her vote for "all of the above," with a little dash of misogyny and cluelessness on the side. Not that any of it is terribly surprising, even if we were nurturing the tiniest of hopes that a great weight would be lifted off Auntie's state of residence. [Fat joke entirely intended, despite the fact that it is clearly one of his least despicable qualities, because Auntie is sleep deprived and full of the bitchy. We now return you to our regularly scheduled legitimate complaints.]

If there was a shred of doubt left in anyone's mind that the New Right's platform is "I got mine, fuck the rest of you," this should take care of it. The only mysterious thing in all of it is why this message is so appealing to folks who haven't actually got theirs yet.
aunthippie: old hippies in tie dye (overhead)

I picked up a Wahl Tattoo, aka a glorified nose hair fine line trimmer, to see if I could create awesome designs on the side of my head that remains buzzed.
1. Not on my own head; drawing in hair is difficult enough without also doing it via paired mirrors.
2. I'm keeping it at a #4 guard for sufficient scalp coverage to hide the nolite tattoo. I think with my hair texture I need to be closer to maybe 2+ or 3 for designs to pop?
3. You know what's nice about bad results when your hair is half an inch long? It only takes about two weeks to get past it. If it were worse I'd have just gone guard-free for one more time, but I'll endure a few days of lawnmower jokes for the chance to try again sooner.
4. I'm really, really getting resistant to the idea of paying someone else to touch my hair in my old age.



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aunthippie: old hippies in tie dye (genderf*ck)


In memory of the 1995 March for Women's Lives, I sat outside on the town square with this sign for the evening.

By the numbers:
  • People who gave me the power fist and a smile: 4
  • Women who were tugged away by their partners while still trying to read it: 3
  • Guys who approved overtly: 3 - one my age, two much older
  • Guys who read it while stopped at a light and then studiously avoided eye contact: 5 - all 40ish in expensive cars
  • Nice kindly hippie ladies my mom's age who told me about marching for the ERA and commiserated over our lack of progress: 1
  • Cars who actually honked for something other than impatience: 2
  • Age of the boy who sounded the entire sign out while his mom? and family waited patiently: 5ish
  • Women who smiled: 14
  • Women who rolled their eyes: 3
  • Men who rolled their eyes: 5
  • Minutes spent trying to hang onto the sign in 40mph wind gusts with a broken finger and v. cold hands: 114
  • Lesbian couples who ignored the hell out of me: 1
  • Lesbian couples that actually exist in Montclair: at least one, right?
  • Cops who drove past and read the sign: 1
  • Cops who drove past and totally ignored me: 5
  • Teenaged girls who didn't even see me because they were texting their friends: 3
aunthippie: A purple tattoo of a crop circle on white freckled skin (tat)
[Poll #1822999]

Pros for the arm: I will get to see it a lot, as will other people who might need reminding of the sentiment therein.
Cons: ...as will lots of people who disapprove of tattoos, or the sentiment, or anything that looks like the word "bastards."

Pros for the scalp: So unimaginably badass that it hurts just to contemplate. Can be hidden, which solves the bastard issue and also gives me the Secret Agent Badass thrill like the septum ring nobody knew I had.

Cons for the scalp: Would have to bic a strip of my head. Worries about distortion as hair grows back through it. Partner is un-fond of the idea.

So... I dunno. I could also wrap it around my wrist, but as I'm currently inked I can get by with 3/4 sleeves in even the most conservative environments- hence the original plan to get it above the sleeveline.
aunthippie: old hippies in tie dye (i hate our freedom)
Up early (cat was horking, a sound I am pathologically unable to ignore) and can't fall back asleep (husband has sleep apnea and didn't pack his mask, and listening to the sound of someone stopping breathing is not restful in the slightest) and also the menagerie that is my inlaws' house is awake. Might as well caffeinate and putz around on the intertubes, right?

One no longer horking cat with a bell around its neck and an echoing litterbox, check. One whining dog in the hallway, one tiny shih tzu noisily licking his private parts next to my head, check. Two birds starting to squawk and fight with one another underneath their night cover, check. One new bunny rabbit chewing (mostly) calmly away at her water bottle, check. FIL was complaining that each new pet lessens the chance that he'll be able to get what he *really* wants, which is a more child-friendly* dog. I threatened to build and fill a chicken coop in his backyard for his birthday, since he's wanted chickens on and off as well.

Am currently turning over the finalists for a legal name change- after years of dithering, starting around age 15, the new job gave me a chance to start using the name I'm 100% certain will be included. (The assembly floor is almost entirely Spanish-speaking. Not bilingual, mind. Just Spanish. Deirdre? didn't have a prayer.) After repeating and spelling the original 6 times- including to my entirely English-only boss, don't think the Dominican girls have a lock on mangling it- I threw my hands in the air and said "Frances." Everybody rejoiced, and with the exception of the Wandering Slav who for reasons unknown to me has decided it is "Francesca" I have gone a wonderful and non-mangled year with the new moniker.
Upsides: everybody gets it right! O wonderment! The girls went with Francie, which, while not as hip as my preferred Frankie or Frankly (hi [livejournal.com profile] melicitlu!) is entirely acceptable. The parts-wrangling dude went with Fran, which is... not as nails-on-chalkboard horrible as it was at first. It's less me, but also less grating than DeeDee**.
Downside: Still not sure what to match it with, and I am particularly loath to give up my last name, especially after waiting approximately forEVER to get the damn thing back, but Moira Moore has never scanned right in my head. [The coin flip is between Frances Roisin and Moira Frances, last name TBD but oh god I really don't want to take [livejournal.com profile] ursamajorra's name, nothing against him but I am not German in the least unless you count the tiny bit of Saschen my maternal grandmother brought to the party. IRISH NAMES ONLY DAMMIT.]

I need a friend and spotter without a bias against butchness and/or mohawks to opine on my hair, which has settled into natural sides with a mohawk that spontaneously changes color with my usual frequency (although it's currently black, a blessedly lazy option that I won't have to maintain for at least another month. Also, OMG FINALLY I got black to work on me where it comes out more Snow White than Mall Goth, I am so beyond delighted by this!) I'm rather fond, but as everyone who's had a chance to see it in person is also someone who thinks I ought to have long, curly brown and just be normal already, there's that tiny niggling doubt that I look like a doofus- well, beyond the intentional parts, that is.

I just had to email Bitchcakes, my old boss, regarding the disposition of my W-2. Even after all this time, the thought of having to remind her that I exist gave me an attack of nerves with the heart in the throat and the shaking hands and everything. Have I mentioned how beyond awesome my new job is, just by virtue of not being run by a fucking psycho? Oh, and now that I'm in quality control I am being paid to be anal retentive and break things all day long, which is even more fun than machining quarter-inch-long impellers. During my interview, Bossman said "the department is a little.... quirky," to which the other bossman replied "totally unlike the rest of us, right?" It's bad form to leap across the interview table, hug them, and say "I'm home!" but let me tell you, it was a struggle. I have now heard other people refer to our lab as the Island of Misfit Toys. Hee.


* These pets, minus the shih tzu we liberated, are all "hers," except, well, she's 5. The cat is terrified of her, the dog has arthritis and can't play, she's too rough to play with the birds, the fish don't even count as pets- honestly, they're furniture; what are you going to do, pet them?- and while the bunny shows signs of being incredibly mellow that can change when confronted with a boisterous, sticky child whose approach is along the lines of "and I will hug him and I will pet him and I will name him George..."
** In case you were unaware of this, calling me DeeDee within my reach will result in stabbing. Immediate, painful stabbing.
aunthippie: old hippies in tie dye (Default)
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Hundred and eighty-two, maybe? Somewhere in that neighborhood.
aunthippie: old hippies in tie dye (Default)


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5_7C0QGkiVo&feature=youtube_gdata_player
You can get anything you want...

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aunthippie: old hippies in tie dye (Default)
It has indeed happened: my baby is in double digits. She got a somewhat protracted birthday celebration, with Ikea (for stuffed sharks and dragons, natch) on Tuesday, with bonus free chicken thumbs because it was post-mouthreaming for me and mashed potaybees sounded like a delicious and not in need of chewing dinner and also kids eat free on Tuesdays. Wednesday, the actual Feast of Saint Margaret, was her brother's weekly doctor appointment, but I picked her up from the Y with a california roll with candle in it (did not sing, because she is now old enough to be Embarassed By Her Parents) and she was bound and determined to have cake afterwards, so she got a rock-hard slice of ice cream cake before bed. Thursday was her birthday dinner proper (sushi for her, hamburgers for everybody else), Friday was the school party, and today we are going to the movies with her cousin.

On Monday I am finally picking up my new lease, having turned in Cheap Blue a week and change ago after a flurry of panicked road trips to reach the 6k minimum mileage. What? We were trying to be conservative with it, and also it didn't have heated seats (did I mention?) which the new baby does. The new one is a Jetta Sportwagen, in bright red with heated seats (ahem) and no panoramic sunroof (waaah!) and 17" alloys instead of the 16 inch steelies on Cheap Blue. Spouse says yay, I say boo, because I am afeared of thin-ass tires in pothole season, but not having to drive through the Oranges, Newark and Irvington on a weekly basis will help that.

Just turned down unlimited Saturday overtime at work because I am booked through the end of the year, which, omg, how did it get 6 weeks away exactly again? Have theoretically quit the eBay store, yet somehow this does not translate to getting to bed before 11:30 on any night, ever, and man is that beep annoying at 6:03AM.

Hoping Santyclaws comes through with the Top Sekrit Present Of Much, Much Wishing.
aunthippie: old hippies in tie dye (pinko commie leftist)
Increasingly frustrated and pessimistic with the state of national affairs.

I posted the Elizabeth Warren quote that's going around to my facebook and got a somewhat predictable nibble from my too-smart-to-be-that-libertarian cousin in New Mexico, followed by a smackdown that I didn't even have to participate in (thanks, awesome friendslist!) but I'm still fussing over it because it's just not a medium for anything like a protracted discussion, and I have all sorts of more in depth thoughts to articulate, except argh, character limit and the boat has sailed already and also argh, thumbs on a tiny keyboard.

(My home internet is down in direct proportion to the frequency with which Upstairs Guy gets it up, as he shuts the router off if he's in the city overnight. Ahem.)

So, anyway. Raar stab sputter sputter sigh. Am trying to get the compunction to either fish for articles for the [livejournal.com profile] dhlc, or maybe update [livejournal.com profile] under_the_oak or possibly get gittin' on the New Project Of Much Secrecy And Procrastination I aim to launch sometime this decade with the lovely and intelligent [livejournal.com profile] innostrantsa... or possibly watch tv and whack a brick against my frontal lobe until such time as I can concentrate on what's happening without wanting to weep tears of blood and immediately grab a molotov cocktail and hit the streets.
aunthippie: old hippies in tie dye (Default)

Brain screaming "NOT THIS DAMMIT" without providing even a glimmer of what would be tolerable? Check.
One near-death, one death, and a semi-significant number for tomorrow's birthday? Check.
One continual urge to just grab spouse and kids and a handful of posessions and make for the sunset, or at least a cheaper and less densely populated place I have never been to before? Check.
Ever-increasing amounts of hair dye required to distract me from all of the above? Check.



Fie, I say.

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