A simple girl in a complex world

Saturday, May 31, 2003

Oh Baby

I meant to get this up here yesterday, but life sometimes dictates other plans.

I originally read this story on USA Today, but I couldn't find it there today. I'd like to point out that this article refers to the unborn child of Laci Peterson as "the baby" all throughout the article. Technically, of course, a baby can be a fetus - 2nd definition on Dictionary.com

You'd think the liberal media would be a little more selective with its nomenclature. After all, abortion is legal, and we (read: women) don't abort babies, right? We abort fetuses. We abort unborn children.

Yet, in this case, which for some mind-boggling reason has captured the entire nation (perhaps life after war is boring?) an unborn child is an "infant son" and a "baby." And, obviously, this will inspire more public outrage.




Thursday, May 29, 2003

The Three Things I Learned in Home Economics Class

Yesterday, I was thinking about my 8th grade home ec class. This was a required class - it or metal shop. I took home ec only because I have an intense dislike of fire, and so shop was out of the question.

I'd best get to the point and enumerate said three things.

1) I learned to sew and stuff a pillow, and I learned how to make a short-sleeved shirt. I still have the pillow, so I guess that's a "deliverable" from home ec. The shirt, well, I'm not sure where that went. I know I wore it to the spelling bee in 9th grade, so perhaps that spelling bee memory is what made me think of home ec. I have since, sadly, unlearned any sewing tricks of the trade; I have no natural talent to carry me through in this regard, either.

2) I learned how to make pudding to please my spouse. Chocolate, no less. Might I expound on how much I despise pudding? Really, I despise it. I'd much rather clean cat litter for an hour. I have always despised pudding, and so making pudding FROM SCRATCH was not exactly a pleasant experience for me, but it was obviously memorable. I'm sure I have repressed any pudding-making skill I might have acquired.

3) Ah, the big one. I learned that Del Monte peaches are of higher quality than generic, store-brand peaches. Wow! Isn't that a revelation? A 13 year-old girl needs to know these things. Someday she may have a family to feed.

I espouse the peach theory purported by my home ec teacher, though. The generic ones were ratty looking and possessed a gravelly texture. The Del Monte peaches were oh-so smooth and delectable. Mmmm.

Thus concludes your home ec lesson for the day. Incidentally, I learned to cook at home, and I'm quite good. I learned to clean by default; my mother wanted every surface of her home "plate" clean. Yes, that means it could serve as a plate in a pinch. It's just that sewing thing...



Wednesday, May 28, 2003

Rapid Detox, baby

I read the USA Today article about Rapid Detox today. It was interesting in and of its own right, but, as is often the case, a certain paragraph struck me funny.

That paragraph is:

    "I have detoxed attorneys and doctors on a Friday and they are back at work on a Monday and seeing patients or clients on Tuesday," says Dr. Rick Sponaugle, chief of anesthesiology at Helen Ellis Memorial Hospital in Tarpon Springs, Fla. and director of Florida Detox, located in the hospital. "We take them through the detox in a more humane way and what I believe is a less dangerous way."

"A more humane way."

Are we killing these people? Are they animals? Humane, according to dictionary.com, is defined as "Characterized by kindness, mercy, or compassion." Well, that's nice. I can see the corner clinics now. You've got your Walgreen's, your 7-11, your McDonald's, and your detox clinic. Will this work for smokers?

Anesthesia and drugs to combat other drugs, more cultural panacea. I mean, obviously - weekend detox is the thing, and then back to work.



Monday, May 26, 2003


Yesterday and today I have been ravaging through cubbyholes, file cabinets, and under-the-bed boxes stuffed with paper and other mementos trying to determine the difference between detritis and keepsake. It's been a good time and a half attempt at spring cleaning, and I'm still nowhere near done, but here's the gist of it all.

An online friend recently informed me he was throwing away his life. On the surface, this is a pretty strange comment, but he meant it quite literally - throwing out/ridding himself of everything that doesn't fit in a midsize car in preparation for a long move by said car.

Immediately this set me to thinking. First, I'm established in a house - been here over three years, as a matter of fact. I sit writing in my office, and I'm fairly certain I could not fit this room's contents into my automobile. Still, I tossed the thought through my head and brought it forward as a dinner topic last evening and then set about trying to mentally stratify the things that're important to me - the female Noggle hierarchy of needs, if you will.

So here they are.

1) Brian. Obviously, I'd go nowhere without him, though this would make the task a slightly cheating one - Brian has a truck, so we'd have two automobiles to fill. But, if I could only fulfill one "need," it'd be him.

2) The cats. Plural. All of 'em. They're a collective entity because I cannot further classify the cats into taking this one and leaving that. So, all five cats and Brian in one automobile - that'd be about all she wrote. I cannot fathom a long trip with 5 cats, though. Some of us would not survive, I'm sure.

3) All of the small things that I consider sentimental. Most of these things fit in two save-it boxes (my mother's terminology) that fit under the bed. I could probably compress the really, really important things into one box. I'll talk a little about these things.
  • We have a 23 year-old book mark award that says "you've read 25 books." The grape scratch and sniff component of the bookmark still works.
  • A crayon-colored and torn piece of notebook paper that says "Notice! If you want to be a cat club member, call Heather Igert at 648-4894."
  • Report cards from junior high, high school, and college.
  • My father's, grandfather's, and grandmother's obituaries.
  • A copy of my wedding invitation.
  • A card from my parents, in my father's handwriting (this is rare) indicating pride and a $50 reward for all As.
  • The rules of dancing, as I so aptly illustrated on a napkin to Brian when we were first dating. They include such gems as "No clapping, no snapping fingers, and no one-finger thing."
  • My A+++ on "Which Did More to Shape The Development of Democracy, the American War for Independence, or the English Revolutions of the 17th Century?" Incidentally, I gave credit to the British. The whole chicken and egg thing. What else is a 15 year-old to do on this subject?
  • My 9th grade spelling bee word list, containing such beauties as bilboquet, brachygraphy, casuistry, catastasis, dehiscence, fricassee, glogg, insouciance, potpourri, schipperke, tagraggery, and zaibatsu.

4) The computer. Sigh, sad, eh? The computer means I'd have the capacity to work and to communicate, though, so it is a simple choice.

5) All - the vast and volumonous quantity - of our books. It'd break down here. There's no way all of our books would fit in a vehicle, even if it were devoid of humans and felines. But books are to be kept, and, in our definition, that often means on bookcases stuffed two books deep.

6) Clothing - yeah, this doesn't seem to practical, but clothes can be replaced, or, actually, I'd probably cheat and ship them because it's cheaper than shipping books.

7) Anything else - CDs, DVDs, the various material things that are nice but not necessary.

So, there's my thought for the day and a large chunk of my weekend's activity; my recycle bin out back is a very full and bustling place.


Tsk, Tsk, Fitness magazine

I think Fitness magazine will only be a one-year subscription for me. It's trying to be Shape and Muscle & Fitness Hers, but it just can't put enough meat on the sandwich.

And it does things like this.

In the July, 2003 issue, we have the usual - lose weight, tone bikini body, conquer emotional eating, blah blah blah. On page 39, there's a "success story" of a woman who's 5'10 and 165 pounds. She's got a hearty build, and she looks fine. Of course, she used to weigh 310 pounds, so this 165, normal-looking, non-chunky weight, is good. We knew this - yay, go team. Then, on page 90, there's another woman's picture and her story. She's 5'1 and has dropped down to 135 pounds and appears quite fit. Just for comparison, add 5 pounds for every inch of height. I'm 5'8, so at her build elongated, I'd be about 170, which is a bit hefty, but, if you're fit and appear fit, Fitness will endorse you, obviously. Go Fitness.

Now, on pages 94 - 98, lurks the article "The Face of Fitness." The magazine selected three young women who "epitomize our mind/body/spirit philosophy." Oh, I need to mention, too, they're all STICK THIN. Specs: 5'9 and 120, 5'8 and 122, 5'8 and 115. The first one has some muscle to her - nice shoulders at least.

Ectomorphs! Ladies on pages 39 and 90, take heed! You need to lose weight in order to be a sleek fly-away female. I'm trying to imagine myself at 120, and I think my hip bones would cause pain to anything with which they had contact. "Don't run into that Heather chick in the elevator - she'll hurtcha." Who wants to see your hip bones anyway? Sir Mix-a-lot is puking, I'm sure. Is that a NuvaRing, or is that your waist?

Fitness, you bad scaly dog, you. Pick an ectomorph, a mesomorph, and an endomorph, please. This is not the ideal against which all women should aspire.



Sunday, May 25, 2003

Power Lunch

One pie plate (glass)
1 serving of chicken, shredded
Lettuce or salad mix enough to slightly fill the pie plate
Small bit of chopped fresh basil
1/4 to 1/2 serving of skim milk mozzarella cheese
One tomato, sliced
1 serving of pecans, split in half
Pepper to taste

Put lettuce in the pan first, then add the basil, cheese, tomato (in wedges), chicken, then pecans. This is one of those salads that I can eat with straight Regina Red Wine vinegar (with garlic flavor).



The verdict, positive

I checked on May 17th, but I didn't find anything definitive. I've been gone all week, but in the St. Lous Post-Dispatch today, there was a small article about the defeat of Missouri SB 668, the bill that would make it a Class D felony to photograph animal facilities without prior consent.

Here's the info from the Humane Society. hln