Her Ladyship

Notes from the gutter.

Monday, September 24, 2007


That was my sorry attempt to give a cougar yell. Although...am I old enough to be a cougar yet? Do you have to actually hit on and get younger men to be a cougar, or can you just respect those who do? (BTW: My junior high school's mascot was the cougar and our motto was "Cougar pride." Ah, such subversive and subconscious feminism at work even then.)

ANYWAYS, this cougar talk was started because Saturday night I wore my leopard-skin print top for the first time. I went shopping a few weeks ago for work attire and came home with that shirt, plus a zebra-print tank top. Sometimes I'm not sure where the line between ironically tacky and just plain tacky is anymore. Either way, I *love* those shirts, so I guess it doesn't really matter.

As part of a general celebration that this summer was over and that my beloved condo in DC has finally shuffled along the food chain to a new owner, we were at a fancy French restaurant in town for dinner. The wine steward recommended a sparkling rose that was one of the cheapest bottles on the menu. Perhaps the leopard skin working its magic? Or perhaps what he thought the leopard skin could afford? Either way, it was delish.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

I am FAR too excited about this

The Texan installed the newest version of Office on my computer last night, and he spent a good ten minutes assuring me that while it looks very different from what I'm used to, and that nothing will be where I want it to be, after a couple of days I'll have gotten all up to speed and will be a happy camper. (He used to be an IT tech and thus knows how quickly users get frustrated with their computers.)

A couple of days? Two hours into it and I'm already loving it. It does have things shifted around a bit but so far I've been able to find everything I need.

But the absolute gravy or cherry on the top (depending on whether you feel like dinner or dessert) is that the Word documents all have a function where the bottom left-hand corner automatically keeps track of how many words you've typed. It keeps up with you and you can highlight some text, at which point it will say how many words that text is out of the overall total.

I cannot begin to express how much this function tickles me. It might be because for my work, nothing is ever indicated in page length but in word count, and sometimes when a piece is coming along very slowly or with great difficulty, I take comfort in highlighting sentences/paragraphs to find out how many words are contained therein and thus demonstrate to myself that I only need ten more just like them (or whatever number words out to be). This new capability is only feeding my word count addiction. MORE PLEASE.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Living in a mobile home is rubbing off on all of us

The Texan and I have opted against buying a new place to live right now. We're not going to be in SA much longer than a couple of more years, and our real estate market is still in the process of tanking. So instead, we figured that while it would be nice to have a house with a pool, it would be even better not to have an upside-down mortgage that would wipe out what little savings we have.

Thus, we are working on making our current abode more inhabitable. Some of that is fun stuff - redoing the floors - and some of it involves basic maintenance that had been put off to the nebulous time of "later." Well, later is NOW, dammit, and we're getting some work done.

Part of that included replacing the trim on the outside of the mobile home. The other day, our jack of all trades was pounding up the replacement just on the other side of the office. I didn't think it was that big of a racket but Shrapnel obviously disagreed. As the hammer worked on one side of the wall, Shrapnel bounded up, glared, hissed, and started whaling away on the other side of the wall. It was exactly the feline equivalent of "git offa mah property!" We thought it was a fluke but then he did it again later. And, hey, it worked - the guy left. Of course, he did so because the job was done, but still. A victory is a victory.

Monday, September 10, 2007

It was all so much simpler then

The other day, I was getting caught up with the shows that had built up on DVR (although it seems rather moot since The Texan still has not one but two "Andromeda" marathons waiting for him, and which have stretched our DVR to its breaking point).

Anyways, I watched a "Gilmore Girls," or, as The Texan likes to refer to them, "mah stories," and it was the one where Rory and Paris go to Daytona for spring break. The Shins were the unanounced special guest stars and played for a good chunk of the show.

Then I moved on to "Scrubs" and that had the Polyphonic Spree on it. They also were unannounced and also got considerable screen-time.

It was like I'd magically been transported back to 2004. After "Scrubs" was over, I quickly turned off the TV, afraid to break the spell.

Wednesday, September 05, 2007


For Labor Day weekend, The Texan and I opted for a relaxing weekend of touring the Colorado mountains. He used to live there over a decade ago and has always talked very wistfully about how beautiful it is there. In the space of two days, we put over 700 miles on our rental car. So, to sum: gorgeous, absolutely, but relaxing? Not really.

We flew into Colorado Springs, which is a spookily empty airport. It was Labor Day weekend AND Parents' Weekend at the Air Force Academy, and yet we saw only a handful of cars pull up to the curb while we were waiting for the rental car shuttle.

Not wanting to waste any time, we picked up our rental car and headed off immediately west. We were driving in the twisty mountain roads of the Arkansas River bed, which is quite pretty but at night, when it's raining and you're exhausted and it's dark, it's a bit of a white-knuckle drive.

We spent most of our time going up and down in elevation. In Texas, when you drive into a dinky little country townlet, a sign tells you how many people live there. In Colorado, a sign says how high you are. It's kind of habit-forming: we were kicking ourselves for not bringing The Texan's GPS device so we could tell every second what our altitude was.

The highest we got was the Cumberland Pass, which is officially 12,100 ft I think. At that altitude I kept expecting to have to duck as planes flew by. I also learned that at that altitude, walking is for the locals. Ten steps and I was gasping for air.

I got to drive through the Continental Divide at Monarch pass. That scared the bejesus out of me. Nothing like knowing you're in charge of not flipping over your vehicle into a thousand-foot drop to really heighten the senses. Anyways, we survived and I took the obligatory picture in front of the divide.

When we were driving through a grassy highland, we stopped to try to get breakfast. Unfortunately, the town we picked was shut down for its "Pioneer Days" parade. But the good part was we got there in time to see the 4H club march by with their llamas. They all were wearing green bandannas! Every animal looks darling with a bandanna around its neck, I don't care how vicious (or spitty, in this case) it is.

And one interesting innovation we saw a lot of: in Colorado, everything is supposed to look cabin-y and old time-y. So a lot of the buildings tried to pull off the log cabin look, including the mobile homes. It almost worked for them, too.

Anyways, we got home late on Monday night and I must say I'm happy to be back where it's flat. They can try to call this "Hill Country" all they want, but the real hills are about 1000 miles west of here.