June 30, 2005

Scientology Meme

I've seen this meme on several blogs, but I copied the questions from The Hot Librarian. These are allegedly questions that the "Church" of Scientology asks in one of its questionnaires. I have no clue if that's true, but the questions are just weird enough to fit that "religion".

1. Have you driven anyone insane?

Only my mother. And I'm pretty sure she was already insane when we met.

2. Have you ever killed the wrong person?

Not yet.

3. Is anybody looking for you?

My dog is usually trying to track me down, but that poor thing can't even find her tennis ball, and she's got about a million of them around our house.

4. Have you ever set a poor example?

I was raised a good Catholic girl. Of course I think I've set poor examples, but only the good die young, right?

5. Did you come to Earth for evil purposes?

I try to use my powers for good.

6. Are you in hiding?

This is sort of like question #3. Just because people can't seem to find me doesn't mean I'm hiding.

7. Have you systematically set up mysteries?

I'm really not organized enough to do much of anything systematically, much less setting up mysteries.

8. Have you ever made a practice of confusing people?

I really try not to make a habit of it, but sometimes it can't be helped.

9. Have you ever philosophized when you should have acted instead?

I'm not much of a philosopher so there's never really any danger that I'm going to be too busy contemplating the world's mysteries to say, eat.

10. Have you ever gone crazy?

Why no -- the wonders of modern psychiatry have kept me on the "sane" side of the balance sheet.

11. Have you ever sought to persuade someone of your insanity?

If I were really insane, I don't think convincing others would require much persuasion.

12. Have you ever deserted, or betrayed, a great leader?

I'd have to meet one first.

13. Have you ever smothered a baby?

What kind of questions are these?

14. Do you deserve to have any friends?

Why yes. I'm a good listener, I'm funny and I make a mean peach iced tea.

15. Have you ever castrated anyone?

You know, I didn't even realize that was an option.....

16. Do you deserve to be enslaved?

Oh goodness, no. I'm much too delicate for that sort of treatment. Unless it's at a spa. Then I might have to reconsider.

17. Is there any question on this list I had better not ask you again?

Well, the one about smothering a baby, but you never really should've asked me that in the first place. Do you kiss your mother with that mouth?

18. Have you ever tried to make the physical universe less real?

Only every day. Alcohol works pretty well.

19. Have you ever zapped anyone?

Only through static electricity.

20. Have you ever had a body with a venereal disease? If so, did you spread it?

Define "had" for me. I don't know how many bodies I've "had", but I can't say I've ever spread venereal diseases.

Posted by Kitty at 10:25 AM | Comments (0)

Reading and Riding the Rails

I finally got the books I ordered three weeks ago, so let the summer reading continue! And they are:

Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close by Jonathan Safran Foer;

Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrell: A Novel by Susanne Clarke;


Atonement by Ian McEwan.

And yesterday, after all of my excitement at getting some new reading, I got an e-mail from Amtrak Guest Rewards program about a new promotion they're running. If you're a member of their free Guest Rewards program (much like a frequent flier program, only without all that pesky air travel), they'll send you an e-mail which gives you a code to register for their new discount promotion. Once you register, you get 25% off all travel you book between July 7 and the end of September, as long as you travel before September 30. This works out perfectly, since I'm planning to head to Chicago in August for the ABA Annual Meeting. Chicago, here I come!

Posted by Kitty at 09:39 AM | Comments (0)

June 24, 2005

CSS and animated characters

Success! I finally got the books to show up at the top of my blog. After the fabulous Jim loaded my images onto the mu.nu server for me, everything was in place except the books. Turns out, my stylesheet had an extra space that it didn't need. Darn spaces.

Miss Piggy goes brunette.

Statler and Waldorf, the two Muppet Show curmudgeons, review War of the Worlds and Bewitched.

Hello Kitty, teen rebel.

New Hello Kitty adventure game.

Posted by Kitty at 02:41 PM | Comments (2)

June 19, 2005


Since Archi-Sapper has been in the sandbox for the past couple of weeks, I've had to do both my regular chores and his. This really isn't a big problem for the most part. I don't mind walking Maggie twice a day (we usually each walk her once a day), taking out the trash or doing stuff like that. I found the place where I have to draw the line.

Mowing the lawn.

Last weekend was the first time in my life I'd ever mowed a lawn. Before Archi skipped town, he took me outside and showed me how to put gas in the mower, how to start it, etc. After retrieving the mower and finally finding the gas can, I gassed it up (and only managed to get half the gas all over my hands. The other half actually made it into the gas tank). I pushed the little button to prime it and tried to start it. And tried. And tried. I looked like some sort of deranged idiot holding one hand on the handlebar and using the other to pull the cord so hard it ripped my feet right off the ground.

Once I got it started I mowed the back yard. This was a bad decision. I picked the back yard because it is somewhat obscured from traffic and thus, if I was doing it wrong, I would have fewer people watching me and laughing at me. It turned out to be a bad decision because the grass in the backyard is relatively thin. So mowing the backyard was pretty easy.

Once I finished that I moved to the front yard where the grass got progressively thicker. I could no longer push the stupid mower, but had to pull it and drag it through the grass and mulch. This was progressing (not well, but I wasn't in a position to be picky) until the mower died. "At last!" I thought, "a reprieve!" I went inside for a drink of water.

While inside I was hoping against hope that some nice neighbor would stop by our front lawn and steal our mower so I wouldn't have to go back outside and finish the job. I went back outside and no dice. It was still there. I managed to start it back up again, mowed the length of the lawn once more and again it died. I continued this charade for a couple of more swipes until it died altogether and refused to re-start. Defeated, I put the mower back up and decided I would have to live with the fact that our lawn was only mostly mowed.

The next day, after I'd eaten and slept, I looked at the lawn in the light of day and realized that the back yard looked great, and the front looked like it had been hacked by a machete.

I talked to Archi-Sapper and told him my tale of woe. He replied, "You know, I find this vastly amusing." I said, "Babe, I can't do this. Why won't the mower cut the grass?" He said, "Well, it's hard since the mower isn't self-propelled."

You've got to be kidding me. I could buy a cow and let it snack on my grass with better results than I got with that mower. Even a cow is self-propelled. After I finished mostly mowing our lawn, I looked like I had run a marathon -- and I didn't even finish!

I told Archi Sapper, "This is unacceptable. We've got to buy a new mower," to which he responded, "Phase one of my plan is complete."

So what am I doing today? You guessed it -- I'm trying again. This time I started with the thick grass in the front and the mower died as quickly as I expected. I'm sitting inside now, drinking my cool water and surfing the internet, in hopes that the mower will start when I go back out there.

And while the surfing the net, I Googled our lawn mower. What did I find? That apparently, I'm not alone. My favorite story is the one of the mower that caught fire. If my mower catches fire, I'm selling it for parts and using the money to buy shoes.

Posted by Kitty at 02:23 PM | Comments (4)


*tap tap*

Is this thing on?

This is my first official (non-imported) post at mu.nu. Just checking to see that things are working properly.

Posted by Kitty at 01:01 PM | Comments (4)

June 11, 2005


For the first time in my blogging life, someone has passed me a meme. The meme consists of the following five questions:

  • Total Volume of Music

  • Last CD I bought

  • Song playing right now

  • Five songs I listen to a lot or that mean a lot to me

  • Five people to whom I'm passing the baton

I love music and cannot imagine my life without it. That said, this meme was a lot harder to respond to than I would've imagined. Like Ray, my musical tastes and listening habits have changed over the years, so it's difficult to summarize them. But what the hell. I'll give it a shot.

The first music (on tape) I remember actually going out and buying with my own money was Cupid & Psyche 85 by Scritti Politti. Needless to say, I've come a long way since then. Throughout junior high and high school I went through various phases (they're probably closer to obsessions, but that's neither here nor there), not necessarily with artists as with albums. I would become fixated on specific tapes and play them over and over until the tape snapped in half (or melted in my car in the Texas heat) and I had to buy a replacement.

The first such obsession was in junior high with The Beastie Boys' Licensed to Ill (do I really need to link to that folks? You all know what I'm talking about). I then went to a church camp in central Texas one summer where I met this amazing girl who wore all black and dyed her hair funky colors. She listened to bands I'd never heard of, like The Cure and The Violent Femmes and The Velvet Underground.

My horizons officially broadened, I became fixated on whatever I stumbled across -- I had a serious Housemartins faze, I fell in love with The Beatles and couldn't get enough of The Police. For the most part, I had mainstream tastes mixed in with a few oddities. As with most people who came of age in the 1980's, I started making mix tapes in earnest (mostly for myself at first, before I realized there were others who had similar tastes in music and then I gave them to friends).

In college I ended up befriending someone who loved music as much as I did, and we later became roommates with one killer combined music collection. We went to concerts together (one really fabulous concert by David Garza comes to mind, when we braved the seedier parts of Memphis to check out his show at a warehouse. I think we were the only patrons there) and she introduced me to one of my all-time favorite bands,Old 97's.

I'm sad to report that my days post-college have not been nearly as music-filled. The high point was stumbling upon the CDMOM club, which was a great introduction to some fabulous indie music (not to mention an introduction to a good friend). These days, I don't buy nearly as much music as I'd like, but I get to listen to a fair amount of good stuff thanks to my XM satellite radio subscription.

Oh yeah, and to answer the point of the first question in the meme? I have no frickin' clue how much music I have. I have quite a few CD's, but I haven't counted them in a long time (and I'm not gonna do it now). I have some music stored on my computer, but not as much as I'd like. After my computer crashed last year and I lost so much stuff, I'm wary of storing music on computer.

2.The last CD I bought was Here's to Shutting Up by Superchunk. Good stuff.

3.The song playing right now is Landed by Ben Folds. I am such a sucker for piano music. I actually took piano lessons for eight or nine years growing up. That's one of those things I never should've given up.

4. Five songs I listen to a lot or that mean a lot to me. You've got to be kidding me, only five? This could be tricky.

  • Everlasting Love, the cover by U2 -- this song means a lot to me because the college roommate made Archi-Sapper and I a mix-cd for our wedding and we listened to it in the rental car as soon as we left the airport on our honeymoon. This song was the first song on the cd and it was perfect. Whenever I hear it, I think of Archi-Sapper and I starting our new life together. Everyone say, "Awwww." Ooookay, moving on.
  • Buddy Holly's Ghost by Colin Boyd -- If you heard this song, you'd know why. One of the last lines in the song is, "Don't get me near an airplane, not me, I'm Buddy Holly's ghost. Oh no, I just don't like to fly much now, thank you, I'm Buddy Holly's ghost."
  • Complicated by Pot Dog Pondering -- I can't explain it. I just love it.
  • Why Should I Cry For You? by Sting -- No list of mine would be complete with some Sting or Police. I love The Soul Cages and this song got me through some rough times.
  • Overkill by Colin Hay -- I just love it. The acoustic version is amazing. While growing up in north central Texas, once I got my car, I would hop in my car at night, pop in a tape, roll down the windows (mostly due to a lack of working a/c) and just drive. If I still did that, I'd listen to this song.

5. Five people to whom I'm passing the baton. Victims! I love it! Hmmmm....decisions, decisions. To be honest, a number of people whose answers I'd like to see don't blog, so that's a little tricky. So, here's what we'll do: I'll pass the baton to a couple of bloggers and a couple of non-bloggers. The non-bloggers can either post their answers in my comments, or send them to me and I'll post them in an entry. Of course, I don't want to "out" any of the non-bloggers who don't already have set "internet names" they use for posting, so I'm just going to have to describe you folks and let you out yourselves. You'll know who you are.

I'm passing the baton to: Daddy Warbucks at Warbucksblog because I know he loves music as much as I do. I don't know if he'll actually respond since he only blogs about politics, but he could respond in the comments section of my blog, just like a non-blogger if he wants (*cough*hint*cough*). I'm also passing the baton to Joshua Norton at Strip Mining for Whimsy, because he's an interesting guy and I'm just curious to see his answers (don't know if he "does" memes, but we'll see). And the last blogger to whom I'll pass the baton will be Death and Taxes.

As for non-bloggers, I shall pass the baton to Vauda (who has already used her name in the comments, so I'm not outing her), and the attorney who did the closing on our house. I would be outing him if I used his real name, so I'll leave it up to him to pick an internet name for himself if he wants to respond to this post.

Posted by Kitty at 10:56 PM | Comments (0)

June 10, 2005

Books and Movies

While Archi-Sapper is playing in the sandbox (and by the way, I do find it ironic that he only refers to his military duty as being "in the sandbox" when he's not in Iraq), I have to find ways to amuse myself. One tried and true option is Netflix, which I've grown to love.

Last night I watched Closer, which was good, if heavy. I liked the fact that none of the characters could easily figure each other out, and none seemed to understand themselves, either. The dialogue was good and didn't fall into the constant high-pitched whining and door slamming you often get with movies about relationships gone wrong. Tonight I'm going for much lighter fare with Mean Girls. Maybe I'll get the whole Lindsay Lohan thing if I watch it. Once those are shipped back, the next movie in the queue is I Heart Huckabees, another movie on my to-watch list. I'd better stock up on popcorn.

For those keeping track, I briefly decided to read the Hemingway book until I actually started it. About 20 pages in I remembered why I don't like Hemingway. To be fair, the only Hemingway I've ever read and finished was The Old Man and the Sea (it's a fish, let's move on), and I've always wanted to read one of his well known works. Across the River and Into the Trees certainly isn't well known and wasn't doing anything for me besides. So, I decided to skip that book and have moved on to that book club's next selection, Vanity Fair by Thackeray. I'm not too far into it, but at this point I'm enjoying it far more than Hemingway.

Posted by Kitty at 03:05 PM | Comments (0)

June 06, 2005


If it keeps raining like it has been today, I'm wearing a scuba mask to work tomorrow. I work in an old warehouse that has been converted into an office building. While there are a lot of cool aspects to our digs, being in an old building does has disadvantages. One of them is when the windows leak. The window in my office leaks, which isnt terrible unless we're having a flood. We got a deluge of rain at lunch time and half of it came in my office window, soaking my Dictaphone, a binder and part of my telephone. My secretary has tented the table on which my phone and Dictaphone sit with trashbags until our General Services department can come up and bail me out.

In other news, I finished reading I Am Charlotte Simmons last night. Like most people I know who've read it, there were parts I liked and parts I didn't. Overall, the end was depressing -- so depressing, in fact, that I considered not finishing it.

Now that that's out of the way, I have to decide what to read next. My two book clubs' next selections are: Across the River and Into the Trees by Ernest Hemingway, and Reading Lolita in Tehran: A Memoir in Books by Azar Nafisi. I'm more inclined to read the latter than the former, although I could ditch both of them and read something else entirely. Suggestions?

Posted by Kitty at 01:13 PM | Comments (2)

June 03, 2005


I am officially wiped out. I've considered blogging, but lately just haven't had it in me. For me, my blogging urges wax and wane and we're definitely on a wane at the moment. It's not that I have nothing to say, I just have a zillion things floating through my head and when I try to grab one and pin it down on the keyboard I finally think "ack" and give up.

I think I'm just falling out of my recently acquired good habits and paying the price for it. I haven't been walking as much lately (partly due to scheduling and partly due to the temperatures and weather), I've been eating more fast food and generally not successfully dealing with some stressful stuff that's come up. All of these are combining to create the perfect storm. I'm sure I'll snap out of this funk, I just need to get my butt in gear and get moving.

That said, I haven't lost my entertainment value during this lull. Just because I'm bummed out doesn't mean I can't make other people laugh. I was covering yet another deposition today and was asking the witness where he worked when he worked for a specific employer. He couldn't remember. His attorneys had given me some information that suggested where they thought he had worked, so I decided just to ask him about what was on the page instead of waiting for him to remember. We ended up having the following exchange:

Me: Sir, do you remember working at Company X?

Him: Yeah, now that you mention it. I'm glad you remembered that.

Me: Yeah, I've got a great memory.

Him: Well, you read the information very well.

Me: Good to know those three years of law school are finally kicking in.

Posted by Kitty at 05:31 PM | Comments (2)