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Thursday, August 28, 2008

Clean is the new Green

I'm talking about electricity. Clean electricity.

If you're anti-eco friendly or just oblivious to the fact that we're slowing flushing the earth (and us with it!) down the toilet you may be thinking, "
Hmm I didn't know electricity could be uhh dirty?"

Well my friend, I'm here to tell you, it can be, and in more ways than one.

Did you know that oil and coal industries spent a whopping $427 million during the first half of 2008 on lobbying and advertising? That's $950 MILLION a year.

Why is that a bad thing you ask?

Allow me to pass on a little basic information about good ol' earth, and the effect using gas and oil based electricity is having on it. *Information courtesy of

What Is Global Warming?
Earth is naturally insulated by a delicate balance of heat-trapping (or "greenhouse") gases in the atmosphere. When the sun shines on the Earth, some of that heat is absorbed, keeping Earth warm enough to support life.

The problem is that over the last century, we humans have been releasing more and more carbon dioxide and other heat-trapping gases into the atmosphere when we burn fuels and cut down forests. These additional gases have upset the natural balance of our atmosphere, trapping more heat than is healthy for the Earth.

The result is human-caused global warming, which brings serious threats from increased flooding to the spread of disease to the disruption of agriculture in many parts of the world.

Scientists tell us that stopping global warming is urgent -- we have just a few years to turn around the growth of greenhouse gas emissions in order to avoid the worst effects. The good news is that we can achieve these emissions reductions with effective national policies and international treaties. We must insist that businesses and governments join individuals around the world to greatly increase energy efficiency, widely adopt renewable energy, and commit to stopping climate change. Success is possible, but will take every ones help.

For the full article and more information visit

A while back I was watching an episode of Extreme Makeover Home Improvement. The Navajo Family they were helping had been living in a run down trailer with no running water, or heat, and only half the mobile home had functioning electricity.

What, or I should say who, amazed me most about this particular episode was a 13yr old kid named Garrett Yazzie. Seeing that his family had no heat, he tapped into nature and built a solar heater using an old car transmission and recycled pop cans.

Now if a 13yr old kid can figure out that we can harness power from nature why in the world is this country facing an energy crisis? Why are we paying $4 and up a gallon for gas? Why do I, who almost NEVER turns on a light switch in my apartment, have a $120 electric bill?
I can tell you why - BIG BUSINESS. The Almighty Dollar. Greed. Corruption. The list goes on and on. Yet the geniuses behind the oil & gas industry don't seem to catch on that there's money to be made using more natural resources.

Oh yea, then there's that whole - IT'S GOOD FOR THE PLANET thing. But really, who's worried about that?

The house the Extreme Makeover crew built for the Yazzie family had solar panels installed on the roof and a windmill on the property near the house. They calculated that by harnessing nature as their sole energy source, they would not only end up having NO electric bill, but the energy provided by natural resources would be so much that they could re-route some of it to other homes on the reservation as well.

Check out 's latest video campaign.

Then visit their website to learn how you can make a difference.

Monday, August 25, 2008

Will you please stop with the drippety drop?!

Rain Rain Go Away
Come Again Some Other Day

Preferably like in a month.. or 4!!

See how happy this fella looks?

Well that is about how fed up I am with the fricken rain.

When I first moved to Mobile in May of 2007, I kid you not, it rained Every Single Day for about 5 weeks straight. By the time I finally saw a clear blue sky I had all but given up hope of every seeing the sun again.

People think Seattle is the rainiest city in the US. Well aren't I the lucky (water logged) person to be able to tell them first hand. They're WRONG!

The following courtesy of MSNBC.

And the rainiest city in the U.S. is...
Mobile — not Seattle — ranks highest in the contiguous 48 states

America's rainiest city Mobile, Ala., has an average rainfall total of 66 inches, or 5 feet, which gives the port city the rank of No. 1. WPMI's Tessa Savoy reports.

Do you think Seattle is the rainiest city in the United States? Well, think again.

Mobile, Ala., actually topped a new list of soggiest cities in the contiguous 48 states, with more than 5 feet of rainfall annually, according to a study conducted by San Francisco-based WeatherBill, Inc.

The Southeast dominated the most rainy list, while the Pacific Northwest never enters the list until Olympia, Washington pops up at number 24.

And it seems like it's rained every day for the past 2 weeks, with another week or more of rain to come!

I think I'm not far from offering my left kidney for a few days of sunshine!

Friday, August 22, 2008

Legal Schmegal - Addendum

Every once in a while when I post something on a subject I really want to hear feedback on, I'll copy the post on another forum as well as just this blog. The Legal Schmegal post made it's way onto my MySpace Blog, and on the Journal section of my profile.

Well if responses were what I wanted, then I definitely got what I was asking for. Most of the comments surprisingly (at least to me) expressed opinions opposing mine. I don't mind people saying they don't agree with something I post. I, in fact enjoy the response of people who see things differently. If I needed to think everyone agreed with everything I said I'd close my comments so I could just pretend that we were all on the same wave length.

But I like to be challenged, I like to be presented with ideas and views that are not only the same as mine but polor opposite. I like to expand my horizons so to speak and what better way to do that than to be open to suggestion and when appropriate, change?

I like to think that I'm an open minded person. Granted there are some subjects that I have extremely strong opinions on, and those will most likely never change. But for the most part I like to think that I am a well rounded enough individual to be able to accept that we are all different, have different views, different values, different beliefs, and am caring and confident enough to not be threatened or angered by those differences.

Some of the responses I got to the
Legal Schmegal post have shown me that as much as I'd like to think I'm someone who "thinks outside the box", that my views are in fact still very restricted by the culture and community I've been brought up in.

A friend of mine (real, not myspace) commented on my MySpace blog and I'm going to share her response here.

I have to disagree with you on this one. It's a cultural thing. In the US there are restrictions with respect to alcohol due primarily to society, puritanical values brought down by the pilgrims, founding fathers, etc. Society had made alcohol a taboo so it becomes something that kids look to do as a forbidden activity, like drugs, having a gun, etc.

In other cultures, such as the French and in my country of origin, meals are accompanied by wine or ale, not milk or soda or water but some alcoholic beverage and everyone in the family drinks it. I don't remember ever not drinking wine during meals. When my younger sister was born, she was sitting at her kiddie chair and in her glass with meals

None of us suffered any kind of developmental problems. On the contrary, all my siblings and I score above 130 in IQ tests. None of us ever developed any alcoholic tendencies, nor do we smoke or do drugs. I agree that there should have been a choice in that question to allow you to answer "never", but there is nothing wrong with asking the question. You have a choice in raising your children to do what you wish but so does everyone else.

Granted hard liquor was never one of the choices but in my country there is no "drinking age", there is no fascination with getting wrecked as a teenager as there is here. And there are not more alcoholics than in other countries. So I do think it is the society in which we live that drives some of the problems that exist in this country with drinking. Just my opinion based on my experience

There were other responses with views similar to hers, but I feel that the personal detail she included to help paint a picture of why she felt the say she did was part of what brought me to the relevation that I am still much more sheltered than I would like to believe.

So with that being said I'd like to expand a bit on my previous post and share a little more about why I had such a strong reaction to that particular question.

I agree (begrudgingly) that having grown up in the US has had a very strong influence on quite a few of the opinions and views I have on certain issues. Alcohol is apparently one of them. But having said that, I think that more than the culture I've grown up in, is a personal issue I have with control that influence my feelings on this particular subject.

I don't drink alcohol. I can count on both hands the number of times I've even tasted alcohol in all of my 32 years. I don't like it, I don't see the point in it.

Hello, My name is Mollie and I am a control freak.

I have a problem with any thing that has any type of altering effect on my self control or mental status, be it alcohol, prescription medication or the like. I don't like anything that might even possibly remove some of the control I have over my thoughts and actions.

I pinched a major nerve in my back several years ago and it was only when the pain became so bad it physically effected my ability to breath that I finally gave in and took the medication that the doctor had prescribed. I like being in control. Period. I have a problem with emotions for that very same reason.

Alcohol has an effect on the control you have over your mind and body. This has been proven and there is research to back up that statement.

So with that in mind it's not only (but especially) children that I don't think should consume alcohol. I don't agree with adults drinking either. I actually don't see any valid or positive point in alcohol even existing. That is my personal opinion based strictly on me being me. I'm fairly certain this particular view would be the same regardless of what country or culture I'd been brought up in. I think it's more of a view I've come to based on an internal process rather than one influence by external factors.

I know studies have been shown that a glass of wine a day may have health benefits ranging anywhere from delaying or prevening heart disease to combatting tooth decay. *source I also know that those very same benefits can be obtained without ever consuming a single drop of alcohol.

So even though I have to admit that a large portion of my views are based on the culture and community in which I've been brought up, and even though other countries and cultures wean their children on wine or some other sort of alcohol with little or no negative effects I still over all disagree with the question in general. And I still most definitely disagree with children ever, even and especially in the presence of a parent, being allowed to consume alcohol.

As far as the whole "it's the law" issue, well that's a whole different ball of wax best left for another day.

Show me the Money!!

Since taking a 2nd part time job I've been really thinking a lot about how much money I spend, the amount I put into savings each month (currently nonexistant), what steps do I need to take to become completely debt free and what planning I need to think about to someday (hopefully in the next year or so) buy a house.

My plan when taking a 2nd job was that the income from said job would be split between savings and paying off existing debt, most of which is medical bills aquired before I had health insurance.

A few years ago I was up to my eyeballs in debt, to the tune of around $28,000. I called a few
debt consolidation places and was repeatedly given a "pay back" amount that was considerably higher than I was able to afford at the time.

I mean if I could afford to pay $500.00 a month to the people I owed money to then I wouldn't need a
debt relief agency! Sadly the only debt help that was looking available to me was bankruptcy. So I called up an attorney, forked out a nice little chunk of money that left me twitching for months to come, and a few months later, viola! I owed nothing.

Three years later and I am for the most part still debt free. I mean I have a car note, which is technically considered debt, and thanks to a back injury and car accident (and no health insurance!) I have a nice little chunk of change that's considerably past due to various hospitals, labs and physicians. Oh and there's that pesky ambulance ride I've yet to pay for.

This morning on the way to work I was thinking that I needed to open up my handy dandy excel spreadsheet and go over what I owed, to whom and work out a time table of when I expected to be able to pay it back.

I have to admit I'm not very savy when it comes to finances. I know how to be thrifty and spend the absolute minimum to get the most desireable result, but when it comes to 401k plans, investing and retirement I'm a self proclaimed dunce. Or at least I thought I was. has a questionaire that you can take and it tells you what your Bill IQ is. I didn't do as badly as I expected.


From this test I realize that I need to suck it up and sign up for one of those credit monitoring programs. It's always a smart idea to know what's on your credit report, know what your score is (I have no idea!) and make sure that when you pay something off the company actually reports to the credit reporting agencies that you no longer have a debt with them.

I also realized that I need to check into the 401k my company offers and speak to someone about smart investing. I understand a stock portfolio about as well as I understand Latin (read - not at all). But there are people who for some unexplainable reason love math and accounting and all that jazz lol who can help me not be such an idiot when it comes to preparing for my future.

So if you're anything like me, or heck even if you think you know it all head on over to and see how money smart you are!

Sponsored by

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Legal Schmegal

OKCupid has this thing where they ask you a hundred bajillion questions, then they take your answers and compare them to other users answers and see how well you match.

The questions are completely voluntary and are all multiple choice. You pick what your answer would be, then you pick what your ideal mates answer would be and then you pick how important their answer is to you.

Here's an easy one for example

How often do you keep your promises?

My word is my bond. No exceptions
Whenever possible
When convenient

Then it asks you if your ideal partners answer is irrelevant, a little important, somewhat important, very important, or mandatory. You also have the option to just skip a question altogether.

Most of the questions are pretty simple, with straight forward answers. Some of them are more situational, and some, like the one I'm going to discuss are just down right ridiculous. Not that the question itself is ridiculous, but that it's a question that should, or even could be asked.

Allow me -

What do you feel should be the minimum age at which a child should be allowed to drink an alcoholic beverage under the supervision of a parent? Choose the category that contains your answer.

00 to 11 years of age
12 to 14 years of age
15 to 17 years of age
18 years of age or older

I'm sorry, WHAT?!?

At what age should a CHILD be allowed to drink alcohol? Parent or no parent, the legal age for drinking is 21. Correct me if I'm wrong but my interpretation of that would be uhh NEVER. Yup that's about the age that a child should be allowed to drink alcohol.

I may not be a parent, but I've done my fair share of caring for children and as an adult there aren't many things that will piss me off more than a parent who says "Well they're going to do it anyway, may as well make sure they're doing it safely, where I can watch them".

1. Drinking underage is just not safe. The body is still growing and developing and consumption of alcohol is just not a good thing. A child can't possibly understand the effects of over-consumption or the dangers.

2. It's ILLEGAL. As a parent it is your job to make sure your child has a solid understanding, appreciation and respect for the law.

By allowing them to break it "as long as you're watching" is total bs. You may as well hand them a syringe and a bag of whatever the hell it is you shoot up and let them have at it.

While you're at it, why not go out and buy them a couple of cans of spray paint, oh yea and a baseball bat, and go vandalizing with them. Hey you're driving the car! At least you know what they're doing, right?

I'm not one hundred percent sure if I would be so passionate and forceful about this particular subject if I didn't have personal experience with it, but I have a feeling I would be.

My little brother got expelled in 6th grade for having weed in his backpack. Some other kid told on him and he missed an entire year of school. He later went on to not only make up that year, but graduate a year early with all A's & B's, but that's besides the point.

After my parents divorced, my mom (for reasons beyond my comprehension) decided to pick back up a few bad habits from her younger days. Smoking marijuana was one of them. So following the whole "he's going to do it anyway" theory she allowed him to smoke with her. I'm still not happy about it, probably never will be.

I realize that because I didn't do any of the things most kids or teenagers do while growing up, I have a harder time relating to people who have. Those things being, drinking, smoking, trying drugs, early experimentation with sex, etc.

I've never been drunk, I've never smoked a cigarette, I've never even one time tried drugs of any kind and I was 24 before I had my first real kiss with a guy. And I am fully aware that those things make me some sort of freakish statistic in today's culture and society. But what I don't believe is that they will make me any more strict of a parent than I would have been otherwise, or will cause me to have lesser expectations of my child once I have one.

A parent is supposed to be a role model, someone you can look to as a gauge of what is right and wrong, a guide in life, someone you can admire and respect.

Once you break that boundary, that respect, the authority you once held is forever breached. You can't drink and drive as a parent and expect your child to listen to you when you tell him drinking and driving is bad. You can't sit in your room smoking weed, then tell your kid he shouldn't do drugs.

You can't say "I can do this because I'm the parent, and you can't because you're the kid" because that is just some double standard bullshit. One day the child will become the parent, and they will remember everything you did that they weren't allowed or supposed to do.

So what does it say about parents today when someone has to or even can ask the question "At what age would you let your kids drink illegally as long as you were watching?".

I can only thank God that He protected and guarded me from having the curiosity or desire most kids have to try things that will only cause them harm. And I can, and do, thank Him daily that because I never tried any of those things, that when I do have a child, I can tell them, it's ok to be different, it's ok to not "follow the crowd", it's ok to stand up for what's right and good.

I can tell them, "Hey, I had some really hard times in my life, and never once did I try to run or hide from them by using drugs or alcohol and I made it through, so I know that you can too."

When I put her down, She's Staying Down!

A man and his ever nagging wife went on vacation in Jerusalem. While they were there the wife passed away.

The undertaker told the husband,"You can have her shipped home for $5,000.00, or you bury her here in the Holy Land for $150.00."

The man thought about it and told the undertaker he would just have his wife shipped home.

The undertaker asked, "Why would you spend $5,000.00 to ship your wife home, when it would be wonderful to be buried here and you would only spend $150.00?"

The man replied, "Long ago a man died here, was buried here, and three days later he rose from the dead. I just can't take that chance."

Monday, August 18, 2008

To Bi or Not to Bi

The wonders of online dating continue!

For the first time in my life I find myself wishing I'd been more into dating when I was younger, because then I might have a clue as to how all this works.

Being 32 and having absolutely no idea what the dos and donts, the ins and outs, the ok topics and not ok topics of dating are really sucks.

Thankfully I have some really terrific pals who have been more than willing to offer their advise and encouragement when I stumble. And at the rate I'm going I'll be covered in bruises before the year is out!

My gal and One Date Wonder extraordinaire Jane previously mentioned a dating site or two that she'd had success on and suggested I sign up. One of those was So far the sites I've signed up (and left) are, eHarmony, and Yahoo Personals.

eHarmony was running this special where they "allowed" you to see your matches for Free. Well isn't that awfully generous of them. You can see who they match you up with but it does absolutely no good because you still have to pay (out the wahoo!) to respond or message any of them. The lovely "Christian" folk over at eHarmony very charitably ask you to fork over $59.95 for one month of their service. You can save a few bucks if you upgrade to a 3 month subscription - that's only $39.95 a month, all 3 months billed up front. I don't know about you but that's way hella more money than I care to shell out to possibly find a date. - I think their fee is $29.95 a month. Yahoo Personals is $24.99. When I first decided to get proactive about dating I did subscribe to one month on Yahoo. I didn't think the matches I made, or the kind fellas who contacted me were really what I was looking for so I cancelled after the one month. If a guy contacts me now I'm just hoping he's smart enough to figure out how to slip in his e-mail or yahoo messenger ID so I can respond.

Plenty of Fish, however is free, as is OKCupid. Now when I say free, I mean FREE. Not free to send a wink, or a nudge or a woo. Totally, completely free to message, email, "hit up" any guy or gal who strikes your fancy.

So I created a profile on OKCupid and text a guy friend of mine for his objective male opinion. You may remember him from a blog I posted a while back
"Watch the Braces". A few hours later I get this text back "Your profile - Out of Control!"

Ummm huh?

I called him up and asked him what he meant exactly by "out of control". Turns out it wasn't as bad as I thought but the main problem he saw is the one I want to address today.

On my profile I listed myself as bisexual. I'm really not big on labels and I hate that society feels the need for them, but I'm attracted to both men and women so technically that makes me bi.

A few years ago I would have said that had I met the right woman, had a mutual attraction, chemistry etc, I would have no objection to being in a relationship with a female. That, however is not where I am right now. I'm 32, I want to find love, get married and have children. It's not that I don't think you can have those things in a same sex relationship, it's just that long term, it's not what I want. But, with that being said I still am and always will be attracted to women.

I may not be looking for a girlfriend, but I didn't want to misrepresent myself and deny, or lie that I'm attracted to women as well as men, so when it came to the part where it asked for sexual orientation I chose Bi.

Apparently this is a big no-no. According to Squeakers the only guys who will be OK with dating "bi" women are guys who are looking for someone to hook up with rather than have a relationship with. I have to say that surprised me a bit.

I may not have a lot of girl/guy experience when it comes to dating and relationships but I've always had a lot of guy friends and other than my ex-fiance I can't think of one who would have had a problem with a girl being bi.

So I decided to get a 2nd opinion. Turns out I didn't have to look far.

A few days ago I got a message from a guy on Yahoo Personals. He was smart enough to slip in his messenger ID. =) For anonymity sake, we'll call him Eugene. Eugene and I have been chatting up a storm via text and messenger the last few days. He gives great conversation. He's kinda cute too. =) Anyway, during one of our chats, Eugene mentioned that the whole "bi thing" made him nervous. That statement, coming right on top of what my friend Squeakers said gave me pause.

I told Eugene what my friend had said - about the only guys wanting to "date" bi girls weren't really looking to date at all. Eugene whole heartily agreed. Curious about this I asked why.

Here is my interpretation of what I was told. Most guys don't mind the whole idea of "girl on girl" action. What they do mind is unfair competition. I think the general idea is that guys fear that a women, being one herself, would better know how to please another woman. Having been intimate with both. I can assure you, that is not always the case.

Moving on.

Then there is the whole fear of infidelity issue. It seems that the definition of cheating is a bit blurred when it comes to the issue of bisexuality. A woman who is in a relationship with a man, would be considered cheating were she to hook up with another man. However, and I'm only guessing here, that might not be the case in the woman's mind were she to hook up with another woman.

For me, cheating is cheating. If you are in a relationship with another person, male or female, same sex or opposite, then any "extracurricular" activity with any person other than your significant other is cheating. If you're a girl dating a guy and you kiss another guy or girl. Cheating. If you're a girl dating a girl and you kiss another guy or girl. Cheating. Same goes for the guys.

In a time where it's sadly common to see young women in a club all over each other, straight women at that, in an attempt to "turn on" a guy, it seems that the values, once a standard part of a relationship, are in a rapid decline.

After thinking about it I changed my sexuality from bi to straight. I guess in a way it's kind of true. Yes I am attracted to women, that will never change, but I just don't see myself in a relationship with one at this point in my life.

I once had a very intense emotional connection with a woman, and I thought myself possibly in love with her. When things ended it hurt almost as badly as breaking up with my ex-fiance had. So I've seen both sides of the relationship coin so to speak, and while I'll always be appreciative of a beautiful woman, what I want is a man. A boyfriend that will hopefully one day become a husband and father.

I am, however still curious about the whole dynamic of this subject so guys.. and gals, I'd like your opinions. What do you think?

If you're a guy - would you date a bi-woman? Why or why not?

If you're a bi-girl. Does making out with the opposite sex of the person you're in a relationship constitute cheating to you? Why or why not?

Click the little comment box at the end of this post and tell me your views

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Confessions of a One Date Wonder - Part 2

So let's assume you go through all that initial contact stuff and actually got to a real honest-to-goodness date. These tips I'm about to share are specifically geared towards women with my own personal slant to them although most are good for everyone. Still sometimes it matters. Now you know.

Here are some first date tips:

  • Do come prepared to pay in full for at least your own portion of all date expenses. This is absolutely critical. Do not leave the house without this. Seriously.

  • Always meet in a well lit, public place where there are guaranteed to be other people. If you holler, a crowd should look your way.

  • Let a third party know where you're going, when the date is and at least the full name and description of who you are with. Set up a check in time and make sure to do it dutifully. This way if you fail to check in and disappear, someone knows where to start looking for you.

  • Make small talk. Think in advance about things you are interested in knowing about this person. Maybe they said something in an email you'd love for them to elaborate on. Maybe there are things you'd like to know. Maybe they said something two seconds ago that sparked a thought. Don't grill, but ask questions. Be interested. Care.

  • Make eye contact.

  • Don't act like a buffoon when your date asks a question or two. Answer thoughtfully. Show off your personality.

  • Do not order/ask for (or whatever) the most expensive thing. Be modest at meals, be reasonable in all situations. As you peruse the menu at a dinner, ask what your date is having. Look at the menu and gauge the price. Order something that is the same price or less expensive. It's only polite. Seriously. At meals do not order alcohol or dessert unless your date does. Do not order anything you are not prepared to pay for.

  • Take physical cues from your date. Assuming you are both interested, use their body language to guide you. If he touches you on the arm, then let your hand rest briefly on his shoulder while answering a question a few minutes later. If he's leaning closer, brush up against him accidentally or something. But try to respond to what your date is putting out there.

  • In regards to paying for the date, pay close attention here. This is my favorite dating trick. Imagine you're at dinner and the check comes. Instantly reach for your purse. If he is too engrossed in the bill to notice say "Let me help you with that." Then wait for his reaction. If he says ok, use the money you have to pay for your part of the expenses. Good thing you had it, right? If he says no, look him in the eye and politely ask if he's sure. Only do this once. If he says he's sure, then put your purse back, look him in the eye again, and thank him for dinner. Here is the reasoning: If he didn't intend to pay for you, you have allowed him to save face while appearing to just be polite. And if he did, you let him make that choice. (Also if he did you didn't order anything extravagant as long as you followed my earlier rules.)

  • When closing the date, again follow his cues. How far you go here is up to you. I recommend if you're interested you go for more than a handshake though. Handshakes are for business agreements, not successful dates. If you like him, at least try for a hug. Take cues though... he might just be a handshake kind of guy. If he goes for a kiss and you aren't into that, politely (and smoothly) turn your cheek to him and give him a hug. Try to make it so he's not sure if you meant to do it or didn't realize what he was after. Let the poor dude save some face, you know?

This is just a basic guide. If you have specific questions, please contact your local One Date Wonder.... or, you know, me. I'm always glad to help!

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Confessions of a One Date Wonder

A couple of days ago I mentioned that my dating mentor and blogger hero Jane of Confessions of a One Date Wonder was going to be kind and gracious enough to educate us (me) with some tips and tricks for successful online dating. And as the lack of dating blog posts can attest to, I need all the help I can get!!

So ladies and gents, pull up a seat and hold your hats because here it is! Jane is starting us (again, Me) off easy with the basics on introductions and first contact how to's.

Part one

Here we go:

So Mollie has invited me here to talk a little about the rules and regulations of online dating. Please note that while none of these are hard and fast rules, they are certainly old faithfuls that have seen me through the years. Too many years, if we're honest. Let's just ignore that part and move on shall we?

First up is the tricky subject of first contact. You have searched the web and found someone who might just make your heart pitter patter.... so now what? You write to them of course. I recommend not using a site's IM utility even if they have one and it's turned on. This usually takes people off guard and not in a good way. So we're emailing. Initial contact emails should be short and to the point. This is not the time to profess your love of their profile or share your life story. A few lines is usually sufficient and gives the other person a sense that you actually care about their time.

My favorite trick here is to focus on a quirky aspect of their profile that caught my eye. In the past this has included (but not been limited to) various uses for paperclips, their lack of resemblance to an airplane, and an affinity for zombie survivalist techniques. Quirky is kind of my thing though, so take that with a grain of salt. Still, keep it short, sweet, and leave them wanting more. Make sure your grammar is reasonable and your spelling is correct. And don't be an idiot. Easy, see?

Okay you say, but what if they contacted me? Ahhh yes..... now our wicket is much stickier it would seem. If you are interested and have been the receiver of the initial contact, do not let it go too long. Personally I like to reply within 24 hours. Although you should NOT reply right away. Even if you are online and they are the hottest McHotterson you've ever seen. Contain yourself for a few hours at least, ok? No one likes to be overeager. This of course assumes the best case scenario.

Moving right along, what if you are not interested? Then what? You may not like the advice that is about to come. If I am truly not interested in someone's message, I simply don't reply. I know it's rude. I know why it's wrong. BUT! In my not so humble experience, answering when you know it will go nowhere is a bad business. And this goes for everyone from those who repulse you to those you think you might like as a friend. Any reply at all is enough to encourage some people, even if the content of the reply is indeed not encouraging at all.

I have seen it all from being yelled at and called names, to the guy coming back and begging for a date on the grounds that he likes my "directness" or I've "got spunk" or some other ridiculous thing that will still not make me like him. Best to just let it go. And trust me, 99.9% of people out there will take the same approach. Forget what your mother taught you and just let this one go, okay? The only exception to this rule is when someone specifically asks me to answer either way. If that request is made I will send a polite message declining further engagement and using an innocuous reason which may or may not be true. Believe it or not, in that situation it has never backfired on me. Yet.

Please be warned that in the world of online dating, at least 90% of all interactions will go nowhere. You will not get beyond intial contact, or they will just vanish mid-conversation, or they'll start to set a date and never finish. Do not take this personally as it is simply the nature of the beast. Just make up your mind that this is how it will be and keep on truckin'.

Part 2; "So you've scheduled a date.. now what?" coming soon, stay tuned!

Get the door it's..


In light of the flagging economy and the fact that I have way too much time to spare after work that I'm evidently not using to date, I decided to take a second job. As of Friday before last I am officially a Dominos Pizza "Delivery Specialist". I know, spiffy title huh?

When I was younger I always though that I'd be so embarrassed to deliver pizzas as a job. I mean what if you delivered to some ones house that you knew?! Like a friend who had a hot older brother or something, what if he answered the door? The horror!

Now I'm older, and less inclined to be so easily embarrassed. The dating thing is going slow, all of my favorite shows are reruns and I was just tired of getting off at 5pm, going home and sitting on the couch until time for bed. You can only read so much until your eyes cross then it's time to find a new way to use your time and making money sounded like a good way to me!

I have to say it's actually pretty fun. I'd been thinking about getting a 2nd part time job for a while, but was having trouble finding one that was flexible enough to work around the fact that I have a full time job with a very set schedule. Monday through Friday 8am-5pm I'm at the office, so I needed something that would allow me time to go home and change before I needed to be there and that would be flexible enough to let me off at a decent hour during the week since I get up at the butt-crack of dawn for my main job.

There is a Dominos about a mile from my house so on a whim I called them up one afternoon and asked if they were hiring. I talked to the manager, went in that Wednesday evening after work, filled out the application then started work the following Friday.

It is without a doubt the easiest money I've ever made. You make an hourly wage, a "drive time fee" for each run you make, plus tips. And you're basically being paid to drive around listening to the radio. I worked Sunday evening from 5pm to 8:30pm and made (hourly/drive fee/tips) about $45.00. Do the math, that's almost $13 an hour to drive around town. Friday I averaged $15hr. In my opinion that's not half bad for a part time job. What do you do if there are no deliveries to be made? Stand around.

Personally I'm not the type of person who likes to be inactive for long so I made the manager teach me how to make pizzas. I may be strange but I found that to be pretty fun too. I've almost mastered the art of that whole flying dough thing.

It's also really nice to have a completely stress free job for a change that requires absolutely no thought what-so-ever. Fun easy money that's non-damaging to the moral compass. What more can a girl ask for?

Well, having the occasional date to fill in the off nights that I don't work the 2nd job would be nice, but unless the fellas on POF and OKCupid become drastically more attractive in the near future, I suppose I'll have to be happy with just making a few extra bucks.

Monday, August 11, 2008

Remember when...

There are hundreds of ways I could complete that sentence. Remember when you were a kid and tight rolling your jeans was the style? Remember when Tom & Jerry was your favorite Saturday morning cartoon? Remember the first kiss you ever had, the first crush, the first broken heart?

As we get older, get new jobs, families, careers, etc. memories are often the only thing we have left of who we were. Reminders of a different time, a different place, a different way of life. Back before there were cameras to eternally capture a moment on film, memories were often the only way history was passed on. Family traditions, funny stories, jokes, historical events and the like are often only carried on from person to person via a memory.

There are special times in my life that I don't have recorded or captured in a photo, or a journal and the memory of that particular person, place or event is the only way I can keep those special moments close.

I can't imagine how I would feel if one day those memories were no longer available to me. If I woke up one day and not only did I not remember the times, people and places that had meant something to me in my past, but nor did I remember who the people in my present were.

Sadly enough that is exactly what Alzheimer's does, it robs people of themselves. As many as 5 million Americans are living with Alzheimer’s disease. Alzheimer's destroys brain cells, causing problems with memory, thinking and behavior severe enough to affect work, lifelong hobbies or social life. Alzheimer’s gets worse over time, and it is fatal. Today it is the sixth-leading cause of death in the United States.

What's even more sad is that there is currently no known cure, but drug and non-drug treatments may help with both cognitive and behavioral symptoms. Researchers are looking for new treatments to alter the course of the disease and improve the quality of life for people with dementia.

But there is hope! Research is ongoing and the search for better treatments for symptoms, and with hope, a cure, is ever expanding. The Alzheimer's Association is holding the
Alzheimer's Memory Walk to help continue raising funds for Alzheimer's research. Memory Walk is the Alzheimer's Association's signature event for awareness and fundraising. Since 1989, Memory Walk has raised more than $225 million to help fight Alzheimer's and help those currently living with the disease.

The Alzheimer's Association, the leading voluntary health organization in Alzheimer research and support, is advancing progress in prevention, treatments and an eventual cure and provides support for all those affected by the disease. Memory Walk is a noncompetitive walk, and a festive event for families, coworkers, and friends of all ages.

Please join them in taking steps to end Alzheimer's. You can visit the website and find a walk in your area, create a team or join an existing one! If there isn't a walk in your area you can still help by joining the
Memory Walk Team Virtual and still help raise money for this cause.

Sponsored by Alzheimer's Walk

Friday, August 08, 2008

As seen on TV

I've never actually bought something from a commercial on TV before. I've never felt any desire or need to "call this number right now!" and get a special offer on whatever item of the day some schmuck was peddling.

Well I'm slightly embarrassed to say that my curiosity has gotten the best of me and I've bought not only one but TWO products that you see quite often on infomercial hellivision. The fact that I didn't order them by calling a number, but actually purchased them in a store makes me feel only marginally less like a sucker. The fact that the stuff I bought really worksm well that makes me feel a lot better.

You're dying to know what I bought aren't you. Ok I'll tell you, but only because I'm pretty flippin surprised that the stuff works as well as it does.

Item one:

Debbie claims that her bags will keep fruits and vegetables fresh for days or even weeks longer than traditional refrigerator storage. Apparently she has red, yellow and blue bags as well for meats, breads and cheeses as well.

I'll admit I'm a skeptic. I'll also admit I was really freaking tired of wasting food because I didn't eat it before it started getting mushy and gray. I'm the worlds worst about buying stuff to make salad and not getting around to it for a week or more, then when I really really really want a salad I open the vegetable drawer and my cucumber looks like it has leprosy, the lettuce is a big pile of brown leafy slime and the tomatoes are liquefied inside.

People, these things WORK. I bought salad stuff weekend before last. I have half of a cucumber in one of these bags and half of a head of lettuce in another. The cucumber is still fresh, even the end that had been cut is dry and crunchy. The lettuce is green and crisp, no browning or slimeage. I can't tell you how happy it made me to pull salad stuff out of the fridge and actually be able to make salad rather than having to throw it away.

So Debbie Meyer - I give you a big thumbs up!

The second thing I bought, I'm still not 100% sure about but I'll share anyway. I'm going to advise caution here if you have a weak stomach or are eating. It's kind of gross.

Item Number Two:

What exactly is this thing and what's it supposed to do?

*From the Verseo website

*Basically, the Verseo Detox Foot Patch provides a “One-Two punch”. First, it contains Tourmaline which is a mineral found in Brazil. Tourmaline possesses a unique property of emitting far infrared rays, which generate negative ions. Negative ions are known for having a soothing therapeutic effect on your body- that’s why people feel so relaxed after a rain storm or being next to a waterfall. When worn on your foot, the negative ions stimulate acupressure meridian points for various vital organs which promote improved circulation and detoxification activity. A side benefit many people report is that the Verseo Detox Foot Patch helps them get a deep, relaxing sleep.

Second, The Verseo Detox Foot Patch contains a wood vinegar essence. Chinese villagers have known for thousands of years that the sap from Oak, Beech and Sakura trees make a potent topical salve for treating infections and irritations. Scientists have discovered that a highly processed formulation of these ingredients has an amazing ability to absorb toxins right through your skin.

I've only used it once. I keep forgetting to put them on my feet before I go to bed, but here's a picture of what mine looked like the next morning.

I know, gross huh. The things smell like green tea when you first open them. They're wrapped separately in little plastic pouches. You open the foot pad thing, then you open the thing you see behind it which is basically like a big sticky ace bandage and put the foot pad on it, then you stick it to the bottom of your foot. The directions say to wear socks over them so I did.

There is a bunch of herbs and stuff in the pack that slide around and I had a hard time getting them spread out evenly so when I had to get up to go to the bathroom in the middle of the night it felt like I was walking with a crayon stuck to the bottom of my foot. It tingles, a lot. Not a bad tingle or a tickly tingle even. If you've ever used an at home mud mask, the fresh tingle you feel from the mud clearing the gunk out of your pores, it's kind of like that.

The next morning when I went to take them off, they were hard and sticky. I had this coat of sticky goo all over the bottom of my feet. It was pretty funky. They also no longer smelled like green tea. I've only used them once so far so I can't claim any health benefits or say that I slept better or felt more refreshed when I woke up, but I'm going to try and remember to use them every night for one whole week and see what happens. I'll let you know!

Until then I'm withholding any thumbs for the Verseo Detox Foot Patch.

I just saved a ton of money on my....

Everyone all together now...

"Car insurance by switching to Geico!"

I actually saved money on my car insurance by switching FROM Geico to another company.

I did have Geico, and I had a good rate, then I got in a car accident, that wasn't may fault by the way, and the bastards raised my rate. So I went
car insurance shopping.

I feel a little bad because I'd only made like 3 payments and they ended up shelling out over 11 grand to fix my car. Yes I said $11,000. I know, right. You'd think they would have just totalled it, but I'm guessing since I'd JUST bought the car in September and it was only 2 months later when the accident happened they didn't want to pay off a new car. In their defence the first estimate for damage was only about $4k, but once the shop got in there and started pulling out smushed parts they found more damage, and more damage, and...

Now I'm with Esurance and my rates are cheaper than they were with Geico before the accident. My mascot isn't as cute now, but I kind of dig the new chic's pink hair so it's all good.

Wednesday, August 06, 2008

Recapping the recalled

I did something the other day that I've never done since I've been blogging. I posted a blog.. then deleted it.

Something new was happening in my life and I got all caught up in the excitement of it and posted before I had stopped to think about how I wanted to present the information and how I wanted it to be received. So today I'm going to recap some of what I recalled in that post.

Last week I got a call from a young man who was interested in taking a look at the room I had to rent in my apartment. I'd posted an ad on Craigslist and he called to see if it was still for rent. It was.

We talked a bit about the room, what rent was, what I was looking for in a roommate, what he did for work etc, then went on to chat about a variety of things for about 45 minutes. That was unusual for me for a few reasons. One - I don't like talking on the phone much at all. I'd much rather text or talk in person. Two - the guy had called about renting my room, so I honestly hadn't expected to discuss anything else with him. Three - I found myself liking the way his voice sounded and the easy laugh he had.

Thursday evening after I got off work he came over to meet me and look at the room. He called when he was pulling up outside my apartment building and I went outside to meet him so he'd know where to go. As I'm coming down the steps to say hi all I could think was WOW. Just WOW, this guy is gorgeous. When we'd talked on the phone the night before he'd mentioned that he'd been heavy in high school and had been pretty shy as a result, but that shortly after he graduated he started losing weight and girls started noticing him, so I expected an average or even kind of cute guy to show up.

Well you know what they say about preconceived expectations. They never turn out like you expect. He was 6'5, about 250lbs with the most piercing blue eyes I've ever seen, fringed by thick dark lashes. Dark hair and blue eyes is just.. just.. yeah.. that.

The guy looked like a cross between a young Elvis Presley and Jonathan Rhys Meyers.

Seeing the two side by side, it's no wonder Rhys-Meyers was cast to play the King himself in the self titled movie biography Elvis.

Moving on. He came in, looked around the apartment, filled out the rental application that I have all prospective roommates fill out and then we sat and chatted. Some how or another the topic turned to sex. It was really quite strange, sitting there having a relatively intelligent non-sexually charged conversation about sex with such a beautiful specimen.

He talked about how he'd been 18 his first time, which in today's society is almost unheard of, I told him I had been 24, he was impressed, I couldn't stop looking at his mouth. He told me about the 2 long term girlfriends he'd had and how the most recent one, to whom he'd been engaged had left him to get back with her "baby's daddy" and how he'd been single for 6 months and was just trying to figure out if it was even worth it to try again. He's only 22 and I assured him there would be many more women who'd come and go from his life and not to give up hope.

We talked about religion and work and the meat market known as the bar scene. I talked about how I was finally ready to try dating after having been single for 5 years, he said he just wished he could find a good female friend who liked to have monogamous sex. I told him that in my younger days I'd once had that kind of relationship with a guy and if it was what both people were looking for worked out quite well.

It had been raining pretty heavily for a while and seemed to be slowing down. We'd been talking for a few hours by this point and I suggested he might want to go while it wasn't so bad out. I asked him what he thought of the apartment and if he was interested. He said he liked it, but to be honest his mind was a bit distracted by the topic of conversation we'd been having and he wanted to think about it over night when his head cleared and call me in the morning. I said that was fine, we shook hands and he left.

I sat there on the couch for about twenty-five minutes thinking about the strangeness of the last few hours and wondered at the sanity of what I was considering.

Before I go any further allow me to fill you in a bit about something. I've been with 3 men in the past 8 years. One was my fiance, now ex, one was a good friend who volunteer to be the rebound guy after my fiance and I broke up and the third was a friend from school that I'd known for 20 years. Prior to the first and so far only serious relationship I've been in I did have a casual sex partner a "friends with benefits". He was in the air force, very very cute with a killer body, neither of us wanted a committed relationship but both of us wanted committed sex with one partner, we enjoyed each other's company, it was a win win situation.

I honestly don't think there is anything wrong with a situation like that. If you have two mature, responsible consenting adults who can be of mutual benefit to one another, then no harm, no foul. That's just not what I want right now. Or so I thought.

About thirty minutes later I took a deep breath, picked up my phone and dialed his number. When he answered I could hear the smile in his voice.

"You're going to get me in trouble, you know that?"

"You want me to come back don't you?"



"I knew you were going to call me. As soon as I walked out the door I thought to myself, she's going to ask me to come back. Do you want me to come back?"

I'll be the first to admit that when it comes to stuff like social interaction and sexual tension I'm a big fat chicken. There are two very different sides to my personality that I war with on a daily basis. One is the sweet, Christian girl, who wants love and family and a picket fence with puppies and a tire swing. The other is a wanton sex crazed seductress who's all about the pleasure.

These two sides have been fighting over a drawn battle line for many many years. For some unknown reason, that I'm sure a therapist would have a field day with, I've been unable to reconcile the two and figure out how to get them to play well with one another in a way that causes no guilt or harm to my already delicate psyche.

"It's up to you"

"Are you sure?"

"Yes, er no, er ugh, just..."

"I'm turning around"

He came back, we did the deed, very nicely I might add and somewhere in the middle of the doing I decided that maybe I wasn't so sure what I was looking for after all. Somewhere in the middle of the best oral I've ever had I decided and informed him that yes, yes OH YES we could indeed be friends with benefits.

Later that night after he left I text my best friend and told her. She, who knows me I think better than anyone, said, "Are you going to regret it this time". This time was referring to the last time I'd had sex back in January with the old school friend, and the only reason I really regretted sleeping with him was because after the fact he got a little weird and it's caused what has sadly turned out to be irreparable damage to our friendship.

"I don't think so, it feels different, like maybe I'm just in a different place with who I am now".

I had a few more calls that next morning about the apartment, so I text him and told him I had other people who were interested, so last chance, yes or no, did he want the room. He said yes. He came over that night after I got off work, signed the roommate agreement I typed up and well... you can figure out the rest.

Saturday comes and he texts me and says he just got a call from his boss that they just landed a big project in TX and he had to leave on Wednesday for 3 months for work. He's a pipe-fitter. No really lol that's what his job is.

I'm an understanding kind of girl, I wasn't about to make him pay for a room for 3 months that he wouldn't even be around to live in so I told him it was ok, I had other people interested so I'm sure it would work out. He apologized about the short notice and asked if I wanted him to come over after work that evening. I said yes.

Saturday night he stayed. There's just something about having a warm body next to you in bed that makes sleeping so much better. I forgot how much I missed that and just when I found a guy I felt comfortable with, who didn't expect anything more from me than I did from him he had to leave.

I talked to him on the phone Monday, he's already in TX, he left early to get settled into the hotel before they started work. We chatted for a minute and I told him to take care of himself and keep in touch. We said goodbye and hung up.

So where am I now? I can honestly and without a doubt say that I'm not interested or looking to replace the however brief relationship I had with him. I'm not sure what it was about him, or me or timing or whatever that led me to the decision I made, but I do know that I don't regret it, which is big for me.

I tend to over analyze EVERYTHING, and usually end up driving myself crazy with doubt and self questioning until I'm a sobbing wreck. I waited for that feeling to come after he left the first night and it didn't. Nor did it come after the second or third. The only feeling I get when I think about it is a bit of warm fuzzy from the uhh warm fuzzy and a smile of memory that we had a good time while it lasted.

So I suppose it's back to trying to figure out the dating thing. I don't know if feeling more confident puts out a vibe from the profiles I have out or what, but I've been getting more responses the past few days than I had been. Now I've just got to figure out how it all works. I've never dated, I have no idea how to "date". I just know how to be in a relationship.

So I've asked my friend and dating extraordinaire, Jane Wonder of the blog
Confessions of a One Date Wonder for some advice. She's graciously agreed to do a guest post on my blog with some tips and tricks on dating, sort of a Guide to Dating 101. I've been following her blog for a while and am pretty sure she's got the whole thing fairly well mastered so I'm hoping this dog is still young enough to learn some new tricks. We shall see.

Look for her post soon!


Monday, August 04, 2008

Oh, I can totally see the resemblance has this thing called a celebrity look alike morph. You upload a picture of yourself, they do a little face recognition and pop out some pictures of celebrities they think you resemble.

I got this one and I am SOO diggin' it.

I can so totally see the resemblance.. can't you?!?

Ok even if you can't just pretend and humor me, because Scarlett Johansson is one smoking hot chic.

Sunday, August 03, 2008

Masterminds need not apply

That'll Teach It:

Police say Keith Walendowski shot his lawn mower July 25 because it wouldn't start. "It's my lawn mower and my yard so I can shoot it if I want," officers reported the Milwaukee man as saying. He faced a felony charge of owning a sawed-off shotgun and a misdemeanor disorderly conduct charge.

Are you serious? I mean really really serious? This is what the news has come to. Yahoos who discharge illegally owned fire arms at lawn equipment.

Bet it started up real good like after he shot it.