Friday, June 27, 2003

On to the next reason for nervousness

So. Tomorrow morning Jay and I will get on a plane and fly to New Jersey. Where his entire family lives. His entire family whom I have not yet met. Correction - I've met his Dad and his brother on separate occasions when they visited Jay out here, but since that was in such a nice, controlled, on-my-turf situation, I don't feel like it counted. Sunday is Jay's grandmother's 40th wedding anniversary party. Everyone will be there. Yep.

Now, I feel mildly queasy about the whole thing, but maybe not for the reasons I expected to. First of all, I get the feeling that his mom his totally off her rocker. Just living in a world with a different set of rules and expectations than the rest of us... And his sister sounds like a bit of a new age fruit cake. But she's also only 21. Okay, so here's the thing -- I'm not worried that they won't like me. I mean, they're not the ones who have to sleep with me, are they? No. We live in Utah. They live in Jersey. Not going to affect my day-to-day existence one bit. However, I have this really bad habit of just, well, spitting things out. Calling 'em as I see 'em. Opening mouth, inserting foot. You get the idea.

The worry, therefore, is not that they won't like me, but that I won't like them and will manage to convey that to them. I think that could be bad. I mean, I don't usually enjoy upsetting crazy people who aren't related to me by blood.

This whole thing is, of course, aggravated by the fact that we have been together for two years and have not met each other's families except for a stray brother or sister here and there. So we've had time to hear all the evil stories without any real world context. Kind of strange now that I think about it. But that's what comes of dashing all over the country and picking up boys on the Internet.

In my defense, I moved here BEFORE hooking up online. Thanks.

Anyway, I'm going to the gym. Perhaps I will make more sense after sweating a bit, eh? One can only hope.

Wednesday, June 25, 2003

What is it really?

Jay and I were talking the other night about what makes Utah different from other places. Not the physical place itself, but what makes the people different... We're here in the capital, so it's not like it's 80% Mormon like the rest of the state. In fact, it's only about 30% LDS and 70% other.

The conversation arose from me being really sad again about not having friends here. I have lots of people I work with who I adore, but we never manage to be able to get together outside of work. Well, once I managed to have dinner with one of the people, but that's all. I've invited them to our apartment warming, and no one showed. I've been invited to go out for drinks, but then they'll forget to call me and let me know when and where -- AND THEN ask me why I didn't come. God help me.

And the people I've met through Jay's grad school friends aren't any better. I've made plans a couple times, only to be flaked out on at the last minute. A girl could get a complex here. Is it just that people don't understand the idea of doing what they say they are going to do? I feel like I'm in a little bubble of reality, surrounded by pod people. No, really.

Evidently, I'm not the only one with this problem. My syblings all suffer from friend-failure. Maybe our parental units raised us wrong - ha! Instilled in us the idea of loyalty and honesty and the idea of following through on things you say you are going to do! How dreadful! What were they thinking????

Sometimes I feel like I've totally invisible. Je suis phantome.

Tuesday, June 24, 2003

Why, I ask you...

No, really. Why is it that basic decapitations, dismemberments, stabbings, shootings, and all that nasty stuff that happens to characters in books (please, I'm not a total psycho) doesn't gross me out nearly as much as a description of someone getting their eyeball popped out? Why is the image of someone getting a thumb through the orb so absolutely grody to me? Yeeeeaaauck! Just thinking about it gives me the willies. I think I've been reading too much Laurell K. Hamilton again.

The trip up to the Tetons was a raging success. Weather was decent - rained only the first night - got in five miles of moderate hiking on Sunday and Monday... got a touch of sun but no burn. All in all, just what I needed.

Now to catch up with everyone else's blogs...

Thursday, June 19, 2003


The poison ivy is drying up - thank god. My general mood and outlook on life has improved. Coincidence? I think not.

I'm heading up to the Tetons on Saturday instead of Friday. We invited a friend over for a blueberry pancake dinner celebration Friday night and I totally forgot about it. Mmmmm... blueberry pancakes.

Also, when I volunteer to coordinate group information, that means that the group members are supposed to supply me with said info prior to our having to turn in the outline. Coordination no equal creation. Thanks.

Wednesday, June 18, 2003

Paralysis with Insomnia

I know I'm never going to sleep tonight until I hash this out. I just finished a book Waltzing the Cat by Pam Houston, and that may be what set me off. Or maybe I was already off and that just brought it to my attention. I dunno. The character in the series of stories is like I would have been had I not met Jay here in Salt Lake.

I love him to death. It hurts to think about not being with him and honestly, he is at least a thousand times better than any other guy I have ever been with. And then there are the nights like this. Or maybe that should be the weeks like this.

Weeks when all I can think of is how much I want to go online and find some meaningless job in some breathtaking place where I can breathe and think and be creative without the cares of someone I love to make me feel self-conscious.

Sometimes choosing to be happy here is so hard.

I feel like my options are closing down with every choice I make, and yet I know that every choice also opens up options that didn't exist before. But sometimes I don't know what I want more -- love and family and a settled down sort of life, or adventure and creativity and the aloneness that sometimes come with that.

I think maybe that lately I've been too accepting of criticisms. I've forgotten that I don't really care if people think I'm rude because I don't want to play "let's say goodbye 14 times" before we actually leave. I've let myself believe I don't like to do some things just because I don't like to do those things in the same way that other people do. I think maybe I've lost sight just a little of who I am and what I need to be happy. So much so, that I can't think of what those things might be right now. I don't like that feeling.

So after Thursday night's class I'll be packing up the cooler and going to bed early so I can make an early start of it on Friday. Head up to Wyoming - Jackson Hole and the Grand Tetons. Might go as far as Yellowstone, but I don't think so. Take my journal and my sketchbook and my library books and see if I can't get myself straightened out.

Tuesday, June 17, 2003

Poison Ivy! Ack!

I went on a nice little hike Saturday... but I decided to go "exploring" and ended up on what was somewhat less than a trail. Oh, it started out looking very much like a trail. But it was all a lie. It was merely a former trail still in possession of some trail-like characteristics. Mostly it was overgrown and steep and parts of it had slid down the hill. Which means, of course, that I got to scramble through multitudes of plant life and sharp branches.

Naturally, I quite enjoyed it at the time. I mean, I like climbing up hills - especially when I am alone and no one can see how silly I look or hear how hard I'm breathing.

BUT (there's always a but) Sunday night I developed itchy red bumps on my left knee. Bug bites, I said, clearly in denial. By Monday those small red bumps had grown into bubbling blisters... POISON IVY! AGAIN!!

I had the damn stuff last year - 13 months ago exactly, if the records at the InstaCare clinic are to be believed. So, the clinic is $50 richer, the pharmacy has an extra $8.99, and I have a nine day prescription of prednisone. Again.

Fortunately, it's very effective. And until it stops itching, I will keep slathering on baking soda paste - the only thing that stops the itch. To hell with hydrocortizone.

Sunday, June 15, 2003

About my Dad

Now, I've perhaps given a warped picture of my dad in past postings. Yes, he's an alcoholic from a long line of alcoholics. His dad was a old drunk who had suffered enough heartattacks and strokes to render him a confused and cranky old man by the time my dad was a young teenager. My grandfather was about fifty (we're not sure exactly what year he was born) when my dad was born in 1937 and from all accounts, looked more like 80. He died before I was born. Both my dad's parents were first generation Americans - I believe his father came over from Germany as a small boy - and neither had much in the way of education. So, in light of that, here are some things I find really impressive or humorous about my dad.

My dad pays the electric bill four months ahead because when he was a boy their bill was usually late and the electricity was often shut off before it was resolved.

There's a street corner in Pittsburgh with a heating grate. Everytime we pass it, my dad says "There's the grate that saved my life... or at least my toes... when I was a boy." He used to sell newspapers on the corner in the mornings before school.

In 1955, My dad was the first member of his family to finish high school. He joined the Coast Guard and then started working in 1958 for the same company he works for today. He started as a lab technician and the scientists he worked with encouraged him to go to college. Newly married (to his first wife) with a new baby, my dad worked full time and went to night school and got his bachelor's degree from the University of Pittsburgh. Later (after the divorce) he did his doctoral work at Princeton.

He met my mom when she was eighteen and he was 33. They married two years later -- he asked her seven times before she said yes. He used to sign his gifts to her "PB" for "persistent bastard". When I was little they told me it was for "persistent botherer".

My dad cries when he talks about sick children and people who have made sacrifices for the benefit of others. He got so choked up while visiting the American Cemetery at Omaha Beach with me, telling me about the movements of the troops to take the strategic points, that I started to cry.

My dad will always offer dessert when we eat out. He will never complain about how much we spend or what we order.

He will offer to loan us - his children - money for continuing our education. Then he will tell us not to pay it back.

Granted, we've had some ugly times in the past. But looking at the whole picture, I have to say I'm pretty darn impressed with what he's managed to accomplish - both for himself and for his children. He's been a good dad. I'm glad to have him.

Bend it Like Mia Hamm

Okay, US kicked Irish ass 5 to nil. Watching the team, it's easy to see why the US women's team has been continually kicking ass left and right. They don't hesitate, they run, they cover the entire field, they run some more, their passing is incredible, and they run faster and harder. And I at first thought it was kind of silly the way everyone got all hyped up when Mia Hamm came out on the field... but then I watched her handle the ball. Seriously impressive. As you can tell, my vocabulary fails me when it comes to soccer, but it was a damn good show. Damn good. We had 19,500 fans in attendance - the largest crowd to see the US women's team ever. Hopefully that means that we'll be able to draw the team back here for a few more games.

Oooh oooh oooh - it's Father's Day! Must call home!!!

Saturday, June 14, 2003

Hold your horses

Grocery shopping, eating, and then going to the US women's soccer team vs. Ireland up at the U. Those are my plans for the evening.

But hey, at least I finally alphabetized my links, eh?


Not really liking the new format for editing. This is an upgrade?

Anyway, a few updates:

I finished Lord of the Rings - whipped right through Return of the King and I'm still not sure why I stalled out for so long in the middle of The Two Towers. Having finished the last book, I'm really curious to see Peter Jackson's interpretation of the story. I will say that I agree with other comments that I had seen or heard complaining about Faramir in the movie. He was way cooler in the book. Shafted in the movie. But no one is perfect all the time, I suppose.

Okay - back to my siblings and their nicknames....

I can't really talk about Bubba without mentioning Spud. Bubba and Spud - my two sweet baby sisters. Honestly, I cannot remember how or where or why Kerri became Spud. Maybe because it sounded good with Bubba. Maybe there's some reference that I just missed. Who knows. However, Bubba (Hi Karlyn!) has a history.

Karlyn was one of those babies with big round eyes that don't miss a thing. Baby owls, if you will. Of course, with the big round eyes came big round cheeks that quite overcrowded her little mouth. Picture a living Cabbage Patch doll -- something she was commonly mistaken for in her first year on the planet. So all this staring and cheekage produced copious droolage. Natural for babies, of course, but it looked like she was constantly blowing spit bubbles. And so we started calling her Bubbles.

Ask any of my friends and they will tell you how much I love to play with people's names. (-licious is my current addition of choice... Brookalicious, Alilicious, Ninalicious... you get the idea) So Bubbles became Bubbalooie or Bubbaloo, eventually shortened to plain old Bubba. In fact, I don't think we called her anything except Bubba until she started pre-school. No wonder she's so odd.

Perhaps not as funny as AreOhBeeSeeOhDoubleYou, but the memory of her fat little cheeks and constant spit bubble beard make me giggle.

Thursday, June 12, 2003

Just so you know

I would rather be writing here, but I have to do my stupid busywork homework. Grrraaaahhh!

Which I put off until the last minute. As usual.

Tuesday, June 10, 2003


We all had nicknames as kids - I mean, beyond Kate for Kathleen and Rob for Robert. While others let these addtional nicknames fall to the wayside as they get older, and presumably more "mature", the members of my family do no such thing. Hence, I am still occasionally called "Coffee" -- the closest pronuciation that one of my kindergarten friend's baby brother could give. (At the time I was normally called Kathy.) And my mother still springs "Katydid, yes, she did!" on me every once in a while.

Now, my brother had a whole slew of nicknames -- mostly ones bestowed by adults looking for child-safe alternatives to what they really wanted to call him. heh heh. So, he went from Baby Robby to Bubby Rubby (one of my personal favorites) to "AreOhBeeSeeOhDoubleYou" to Bertram Bunnykins to, well, god only knows what new ones he's racked up by now. I realize that "AreOhBeeSeeOhDoubleYou" requires explanation, so here goes...

My parents were off pretending to be childfree and my brother and I were home with our favoritist baby sitter, Theresa. We were coloring or pressing flowers or something creative and quiet. Bubby was less than enthralled (he was 5 and I was 7 at the time), so Theresa started playing with his little head.

T: What's your middle name, Robby?
R: Kyle (said with warped 5 year old pronuciation)
T: Cow?
R: Yeah, Kyle.
T: Want to know how to spell that?
R: Okay.
T: (writes out his name R O B C O W) Can you read that?
R: Are Oh Bee See Oh Double You.
T: Good job. So from now on we'll call you AreOhBeeSeeOhDoubleYou.

Is it any wonder that she was our favorite baby sitter?

Coming Next: Bubbalooie

Sunday, June 08, 2003

Because I love to share...

And you just really wanted to know, didn't you?

Your Ultimate Purity Score Is...
CategoryYour Score Average
Explored the pleasures of the flesh
It takes a couple of drinks
Sex Drive 63.2%
A fool for love, but not always
Knows the other body type like a map
Gayness 78.6%
Repressed, are we?
Fucking Sick89.4%
Refreshingly normal
You are 65.22% pure
Average Score: 71.6%

Friday, June 06, 2003

Not what I would have guessed

I would have gone for Manic Depressive... or anything containing the phrase "Delusions of Grandeur" I'm OCD about very few things, and anyone who has seen the inside of my apartment knows that chronic neatness will never be one of my problems.

obsessive compulsive

Which Personality Disorder Do You Have?
brought to you by Quizilla

See, with me, it's either feast or famine... No posts for a week, then 3 posts in one hour!!!
Why I love my momma

So Mumsy emails me the other day and writes that she has more money than she expected this month and that I should go out and buy some new clothes to the tune of about $150. (Because she doesn't want me to look like a bum when I meet Jay's ENtire family at the end of the month - 3 weeks!! Ack!)

How cool is that? Pretty darn cool.

And she reminded me that it hasn't really been 4 years since I've seen my brother - only 2 and a half. We hung out a bit at my cousin Helen's wedding back in October of 2000. And Helen just popped out the first grandchild of our generation - Hannah Corrine! Ohmigoodness.

So just remember... even when no one else loves you, your momma still does. ;-)

I'm been in a reading-not-writing phase this last week. I don't know why. Sometimes, just the thought of sitting down and trying to write something makes me twitch. Twitchy in a paralyzed sort of way. I can't quite explain it, because I don't quite understand it myself.

Like, the other day, I knew our landlady was outside working on a few things before she headed back up to Spokane, but instead of going out to say hello, I hid inside. Totally, irrational dread that she would come to the door and I would have to talk to her. Really bizarre.

And then last night I went to class and was all friendly and talkative and "pay-attention-to-me"ive. Sometimes I think there are two of me. Seriously. Serially.