Monday, September 29, 2008


Carol, who actually remembered me this time, went just a bit shorter than we had discussed, but it's fine; my hair grows pretty fast. It'll be perfect in about a month.

Most of those who have seen it like it. Weird, slightly creepy moment at the Hellhole on Saturday: This middle-aged guy checks out and says, "Oh. You cut your hair. I liked it long." I have no idea who this guy was. I usually at least recognize the "regulars." Like the dude who comes in every Wednesday night with his wife, and wanted to sprinkle holy water on me when he found out I was a Cowboys fan. At least I *knew* who he was and forgave the moronic comment ;)

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Minus Five Inches?

I have an appointment with my hair stylist tomorrow. She rarely remembers me since I only get my hair cut about every four months or so. Whenever I go into the salon with my mom, Carol looks at me a few times and then says, "You look soooo familiar...." Uh, yeah. You've been cutting my hair for the past three years. Anyway, the last time I saw her was right before my birthday. Memorial Day. Which explains why it looks like shit now ;)

I'm thinking of going with a medium-length, lightly layered bob, which would entail hacking off about 5" of hair. Since I don't have a boy whispering "Don't cut your hair! I *love* long hair!" in my ear, I'm currently 60% in favor of making the chop.

So what say you, readers (both of you?) So far, as of 4:25 PM, I have two votes for Chop It! and zero for Keep It!

And, yes, this is a big deal to me. Girls tend to get attached to their hair :)

Tuesday, September 23, 2008


My all-time favorite song:

"Slow down, you're doing fine
You can't be everything you want to be
Before your time
Although it's so romantic on the borderline tonight"

Things are as they should be. Life is not random.

That being said, I'd *love* to "take the phone off the hook and disappear for a while." I can't tell you how many times I've been on my way to work or school and almost turned north and then west. I wonder how long I could hide out in Mexico on what's in my checking account? ;-D

Also, Billy Joel is a friggin' GENIUS. And I will argue that to the death with anyone :)

Monday, September 22, 2008

Ten-Second Book Review - Hidden

Just finished Hidden, by Paul Jaskunas. An excellent read IMO--kind of a mystery, a bit of a thriller. Did the husband do it? Will she ever find out what really happened? The mind and memory are fascinating things. Once you think you know something, you can convince yourself that it is the truth. But it's sometimes only the truth as you see it. And I could totally identify with the flawed protagonist, Maggie, who fell for a charming guy that *everybody* loves, a real Mr. Everybody's All-American type, who, in reality, is kind of a dick.

And extra props to Jaskunas for writing Maggie so well. It's rare that a male novelist can pull that off.

4.5 stars out of 5.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Sunk to a New Low

I don't know if I would officially call this "rock bottom," but I'm getting close.

E was making out the schedule for the week after next at the Hellhole this afternoon. I had a backup cashier at the service desk, and we were in a lull, so I sidled up to E and said, "You know, E, If you need me an extra weeknight next week, I'd be *glad* to come in." A nice smile, an ever-so-subtle bat of my eyelashes, a light touch to his shoulder.

Jesus H. Christ. I'm practically whoring myself for hours at a job I can't stand. And THAT, kids, is what $4 per gallon for gas will do to you.

But it worked. I got three weeknights and--hooray!--SATURDAY evening!! NOT Sunday.

If I'd worn a push-up bra and a low-cut shirt, I probably could've gotten a raise ;)

Hell, maybe I still got a little somethin' goin' on.

Friday, September 19, 2008

Ten Years

I don't really think about him that much anymore. When I see an old Thunderbird driving down the street, which isn't that often. On a run when I see a garage door cocked in its track. When we're telling redneck stories, definitely. I didn't remember him on his birthday back in February. (Well, not until March, anyway.) I didn't think about him on August 4. But I guess I couldn't escape him today. We would have been married 10 years today.

I no longer place the blame for the split squarely on his shoulders. It's never just one person's fault, is it? It was never quite right. Two totally different personalities trying to mesh, turning toxic toward each other near the end. Don't get me wrong: the chicken-shit way he went about things was completely ball-less. But I see now that it wasn't all him, and, as much bile as it produces to say this, he was right to leave. What else can you do when you don't really like each other anymore, much less *love* each other? You cash in your chips and leave the table.

After three years, there's nothing left. No more hate, not really any more hurt. I never got "closure," whatever the hell THAT is, but it's okay. If it weren't for him, at least partly, I wouldn't have become the person I am now, and I like me now. I learned a *lot* from our relationship, so I'll have a leg up if I ever get another chance at this love/couple thing. So even though my mom loves to remind me about how I wasted seven years of my life with him, I don't consider it a waste because I'll know how to avoid the same mistakes next time around.

"But the struggles make me stronger
And the changes make me wise
And happiness has its own way
Of taking its sweet time
Life ain't always beautiful
But I know I'll be fine
Life ain't always beautiful
But it's a beautifu ride"
--Gary Allan

Monday, September 15, 2008

Cousin Itt

Just screwing around with the camera instead of doing something productive.

I'm thinking of hacking the hair off, actually. Steph, I know *you'll* have an opinion....

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Take Me As I Am

"We all live with the scars we choose
They might hurt like hell
But they all make us stronger

Slow to trust but I'm quick to love
I push too hard and I give too much
I ain't saying I'm perfect but I promise I'm worth it

If you want it, come and get it
If you want it, come and get it but understand
You take me as I am"

Well then. Jennifer Nettles seems to have been reading my diary ;) After a small glimmer of hope with yet another Mr. Almost But Not Quite, the Boy Moratorium is back in place. ((sigh)) Maybe I need to move. Wouldn't it be a cruel cosmic joke if The Right One was in, like, Alaska or something??

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Friday, September 12, 2008

Is It a Bad Thing?

Like It's A Bad Thing

So my heart's been broke
So I keep on falling
I'm nothing but all in when I let go
I wear it on my sleeve
Yeah, they call me a fool 'cause I still believe
Like it's a bad thing

I don't know about you but I was put here to live and love
So what if I don't do it like everybody else does
They say I'm out on the edge, I'm too willing to risk
Every bone, every breath, they say all I am is a crazy dream
Like it's a bad thing

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Ten-Second Book Review - The Doctor's Wife

Just finished The Doctor's Wife by Elizabeth Brundage. A really good read. Sex, abortion, extreme right-wing religious crazies, attempted murder, art. All the good stuff :) I'd give it four stars out of five.

I'm trying to decide on my next book. I've got it narrowed down to three: I Hope They Serve Beer in Hell by Tucker Max; Hidden by Paul Jaskunas; and The City of Falling Angels by John Berendt.

Or I may re-read The Sun Also Rises, which is an all-time favorite. One day I'll make it to Key West to see the Hemingway House...

Anyway, any opinions or other suggestions are welcome. Hit me up :)

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Only Slightly Deeper Than a Puddle

Wednesday nights are mind-numbingly boring down at ol' Death & Beyond, so I have a lot of time to ponder life's mysteries while doing super-intricate stuff like making sure the citronella candles are lined up perfectly straight (LOVE the smell of citronella, BTW. So we can blame this post on the fumes.)

I'm aware that this is nothing new, and everybody and their dog has thought about this, but tonight I was thinking about the people who come into our lives, the ones with whom we choose to have friendships/relationships (however loosely defined,) and how they change who we are. My question is, are these people in our lives for a specific reason, maybe to teach us something, or to bring something that's been missing to us? Are we *supposed* to find these people, or is it just part of life's weird randomness that comes from the choices we made before? Would we have eventually found them anyway?

For instance, if I had married my boyfriend in Michigan according to The Plan (and there was *always* A Plan. And you must never deviate from The Plan or chaos and disorder will ensue. But I digress...) Anyway, if I had married him, I never would have moved to Indy. I wouldn't have met and married my ex. I might not have started running when things started to go downhill. I then wouldn't have gotten involved with the online running groups that have been such a great source of support, both in running and life in general. I wouldn't have moved to Florida. I wouldn't have become friends with Linae. And then I wouldn't have ever even THOUGHT about doing triathlons. (And God only knows where THAT is going to lead....) And there you have it; I'm not me. You play a few hands a bit differently and you've got a completely different life.

Then again, I may just be really really tired and overthinking things and assigning more importance to these things than is warranted ;) I have no answers, only more questions.

Oh well. If you're reading this, chances are you're in my life in some way, whether it's online only or in "real" life. Either way, I'm glad you're here, no matter how you got tangled up with me. Blame it on a weird hop of your dice ;)

Tuesday, September 09, 2008

All better now

So I had a bit of a meltdown this morning that had me seriously considering quitting CR school after three years, despite the finish line being in sight. (It's down a ways, but I can make it out...)A big Thanks! to my friends, both in person and online, for talking me off the ledge :) This is quite literally THE single most frustrating thing I have ever done. I mean, if I take a dictation, transcribe it, and capture 94% of it, including proper punctuation, that is a big fat FAILURE. 94% - No Pass. I have missed so many tests by, like, five words. EXTREME frustration, I can't even tell you. And then you pass, finally!! And you're elated for about ten minutes before it sinks in that you have to do it all over again, only 20 words per minute faster. And then you need a drink.

So between this frustration, the BS at work, picking up my cat's ashes yesterday, and some other random life things that haven't gone quite the way I would have hoped, it all came to a head this morning. A Perfect Storm of self-pity, if you will ;)

Of course, I'm not actually quitting. As usual, sitting there stewing about it just pissed me off and made me more determined to work even harder. More friggin' finger drills and speed ladders :-P

Monday, September 08, 2008

Letting it go

I'm tired. I'm tired of worrying about stuff I can't change. There are just things I cannot do a damn thing about:
*The fact that some people are sneaky, lying rat bastards who are able to go through life without a conscience. Congratulations, ass clown.
*The fact that, as long as I remain in my current employment, I'm going to continue to get jerked around, and I'm pretty much at the mercy of the aforementioned ass clown.
*How people feel about me. Or don't.
*My current living situation. It's only temporary, anyway.
*The fact that I have shoulders like a linebacker ;)

So I'm letting it all go. Not wasting any more time on it. Instead, I'll focus my energies on things I actually CAN do something about, like finishing school, finding other temporary employment, and shrinking the size of my ass. Besides, don't swimmers have nice, broad shoulders?

One final random thought: Much like Kid Rock, who is only a couple of years older than me, I grew up in the Detroit area, hanging out at the lake in the summer. Watching his latest video, it occurs to me that this depiction has little in common with how I spent *my* high school summers at the lake.

Must be because the boats I hung out on didn't have a stripper pole ;-D

Sunday, September 07, 2008

T-minus 2 hours!!

Aaaaah, football season. My most wonderful time of the year. It has been a loooooong spring/summer. Welcome back, Romo, T.O., Witten, Ware, and the rest of the 'Boys. May you kick ass all season long, and perhaps I'll see you in Tampa on February 1. I may stalk you a little, but I'm harmless, I promise :-D
Yes, it's pink. I *am* a girl. But I still know as much about football as any guy, and more than many of them.

Another cheesy self-portrait :)

Saturday, September 06, 2008

Pointless Rant

What is it with guys who seem to want to go out with me, but get scared off because of the whole marathon/triathlon thing? This has been the case for the last THREE potential guys (one of them turned out to be a douche, so no great loss there, but I digress....) The first one was thrilled that I had finished my marathon because then I could spend all my free time with him. Until he found out about the next two marathons in rapid succession I had coming up. I kept thinking, Dude--I've been doing this for 7 years; you've been around for 7 MINUTES. It's insane to think I'm going to give it up for you! I didn't hear much from him after that; just an IM every now and again to say hey when he sees me online. The Douche flat out told me I was wasting my time and money, that it was a pointless endeavor. All right then. Buh bye. And I don't think the most recent guy knows WHAT to make of me.

To be fair, it's probably at least partially my own fault. I don't just run a marathon once in a while; I run several a year, as well as a lot of shorter-distance races. I just got into the tri thing this year, but I'm already committed to an Olympic distance race next year, and I'm 95% talked into a half iron distance for next year as well. So I'm most likely a bit obsessive. It's well-documented that I shouldn't be around "normal" people, what with all my talk of PRs, split times, and bodily fluid expression methods (i.e., snot rockets.) One poor guy at work asked me how my tri went, and after I finished the story about puking on the run, I think he learned his lesson about talking races with me. (Disclaimer: this is not *all* I am capable of talking about; it just seems to come up a lot :) )

So either I'm a hopeless case or I'm just hanging out with the wrong people :)

Friday, September 05, 2008

Labor Day

Typical Newton Family Photo
Seeing this, it occurs to me that I need some clothes that actually fit. Too bad I spend all my money on races....

I didn't think it was possible, but I believe he's actually *whiter* than I am.

If the whole NFL linebacker thing doesn't work out, he's got a future as a plumber :)

Yep. I'm thinking defensive tackle for the Cowboys in 2028...

Lili, looking kind of weird. That's 130 lbs of love puppy right there :)

Thursday, September 04, 2008

RR: Tupelo Marathon

Tupelo, Mississippi. August 31, 2008. Finish time: 6:04:06
Marathon #14, state #13. Wow. It was brutal. It was hot. Humid. Sunny. With relentless hills, some of them really big (at least for me.) It ain't for sissies. The end result wasn't exactly what I was hoping for, but I find it difficult to be disappointed with my finishing time in those conditions. I earned that skull-and-crossbones.

I left my house in Central Florida at 4:15 Saturday morning. It was an uneventful drive through northern Florida and all the way up the middle of Alabama. 10.5 hours door-to-door, which was pretty good time. Got the the running store where packet pickup was, got my tacky neon-colored tie-dyed t-shirt and my chip and headed over to my hotel. I was bored, so I drove around Tupelo a bit.

Saw a Bed Bath & Beyond at a strip mall, and because I'm a glutton for punishment, I stopped in. (Even smaller than my store.) I never hooked up with the Tallahassee 50 Staters, so I just found a couple of slices of pizza and headed back to the hotel, where I settled in for the evening, reading and texting some friends.

Woke up at 3:30 AM again, got dressed, and headed out into the darkness to find the race site. It was out on country backroads, and I just assumed that the only people dumb enough to be out in the middle of nowhere at four o'clock on a Sunday morning were other runners :) Hung out, chatted with a few people, then went to find the starting line. Took off at 5:05 AM. In the dark. Pitch black dark. A few people had glowsticks and headlamps, but mostly it was dark. Which was good because it was hot, already in the high-70s, and very humid. But still a little eerie.

So the first ten miles were run in the dark. Then the sun came up. Then it started getting hairy. The eventual winner, Chuck Engle (certified hottie and all-around nice guy,) who pretty much owns this race, passed me on the out-and-back course when I was near mile 11, and he had just passed mile 15. I got his picture as he was running by. (Update: It didn't come out well. He was very small in the photo.) He told me I was looking good. Speedy lying b*stard ;)

Moving on up and down the friggin' hills, it was probably in the mid-80s by the time I hit the halfway mark, where the marathon runners turned and the smart people (those running the 14.2 miler) went on ahead to their finish line. We were off the backroads and in a really nice subdivision with ginormous houses for this part of the course. Not too many people out yet, but those that were were really supportive. Then it was back out on the roads. Around mile 15, I slowly reeled in this cute guy who was looking pretty ragged. He turned down my offer of Clif Shots and/or salt tablets, so on I went. I don't know if he finished. Right around mile 16, my race strategy changed from Run Like Hell and Don't Die to Just Don't Die. I decided to walk up the hills and run down them, and run the "flats." Not that there were many of those.

Around mile 17, I made my way up Mt. Kilamanjaro (or so it seemed.) This hill lasted the whole friggin' mile. I was not amused. Then at mile 18, the craving started. All I could think about was an icy cold pop. More than life itself, I wanted a fountain beverage, one of those Ginormo-Gulps. I'm talking 108 ounces of high fructose corn syrupy goodness. That thought spurred me on until mile 22, when the Calf Cramps From Hell started. Crap. Every time I started to run, both calves cramped right up. I'd stop and stretch them out, try to run again, and they'd cramp up again. My salt intake was good and steady, so I'm guessing the combo of heat and hills I wasn't completely used to. So I wound up walking entirely the last 3.5 miles, which pissed me off. This is NOT how I wanted to finish. But I just wanted to finish. At this point, I knew sub-6:00 was out of the question. I rolled across the finish line at 6:04:06, got my medal, and stood under the little sprayers they had just past the line, thankful to be done.

(Some cheering spectators)

They had a nice little setup: grilled hot dogs, the thought of which turned my stomach, and a cooler full of water, Gatorade, pop, and beer. I had one of each :) Chatted with some of the volunteers, stretched out in the shade for a few minutes, and thought about how disappointed I was with my time. But then I decided not to be, because just six months ago, I ran New Orleans (super-flat and not nearly as hot) in 6:28, and in April I ran Nashville in 6:24. I'm not sure how the hills stacked up, but Tupelo seemed worse. And Nashville wasn't nearly this hot. So I can't really be too bummed out with my time.

Went back to the hotel, cleaned up, and started my drive home. Got a speeding ticket in Alabama from a cop who looked to be all of 15 years old. I wanted to ask him if this was his after-school job, but didn't feel like being cuffed and frisked (although he was a cutie--red hair and freckles.) I just kept thinking, "I can't believe I'm getting a speeding ticket from Opie Taylor...." Made it home at about 12:45 AM.

Next up: Mount Desert Island in Maine. I looked at the elevation chart. Those hills are diabolical. Time to crank the treadmill up :-P

(Where can I NOT wear this bad boy??)

Wednesday, September 03, 2008


Hmmmm. Looks like it may be time to move again. I hear Kansas is...oh hell, never mind :-P