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This is my mental reaction to a certain seriously hygiene-challenged reporter at my work. I've blogged about her before and the story, I'm sad to say, has not gotten any better. It's gotten steadily worse, to the point that whenever she walks into the room and I see her, I mentally do that jerk-back-and-shudder thing that cats do when they see or smell something awful. I usually look away as quickly as possible, try to stop an actual shudder, and hope to hell she doesn't have any pages for me. I feel bad about it simply because my reaction to her is so bad; I feel like I'm being mean. But I'm not. She really, truly is that bad. The stench is unbearable, her social skilss are null, she definately lacks some mental something that everyone else has that makes them ... intelligent? Aware? Not-oblivious to the basic necessities of a toothbrush, soap, and the use of kleenex?

And I hate to add ugly to it, because that really sounds petty, but good gods I've never seen anyone so ugly. Most people, if not terribly attractive or even if they have some anatomic oddity, can be gotten used to over time; the brain stops seeing horror and instead just sees Joe or Jane. Not this woman. People make jokes about people who are so ugly that they really should wear paper bags over their heads; I'm not joking, and I'm not trying to be mean. She really, really is god-awfully ugly. That combined with everything else makes me want to disappear when she's around, and I hate myself for that but I can't change it.

She flat-out, in a way that no one and nothing else in the entirety of existense does, sickens me.

Today she walked back to the production department and stood at my boss' desk for a few minutes (I'm assuming she had handed him a page or two with corrections to be made) and when she left, she left a bit of herself effluence behind. My boss looked up after she'd finally left and said to me that she really stinks today, and the look on his face was enough to make me even more thankful tha she hadn't come to me. Now, understand something: my boss is one of those very laid-back, don't-make-waves, easy-going people who rarely ever complain, no matter how bad something gets. The kind of person who, if you hear them cuss, you know the shit has hit the fan and you run for cover if you're smart, because they never cuss. The fact that he mad emention of her stench means it's gotten much much worse than when last I had the horror of smelling her.

I suggested that maybe we should finally say something to the managing editor about her, and he actually agreed that it woudl be a good idea. The realization that not only was her stench enough to make him - one of the hardest-to-shake people I know - cringe and mention it, but that he is considering finally bringing it to the attention of her boss has me quite honestly queasy. I don't want to know what she smells like today, if it's that atrocious.

A good fifteen minutes after she left the room, he could still smell the stench that envelops her.

This is beyond disgusting. It's beyond sick. It's beyond atrocious.

This has to end.

Reasoning the concrete

Ok. New blog name picked, new banner made. Remember my post, The triumphs of the carnal, from earlier this year? It was about my favorite quote, and how I'd like to have it tatooed somewhere, sometime. It hasn't been inked yet, but it will be someday. Somewhere. In the comments for that post, I got into the discussion of what I thought the quote meant and how it applied to art. And, being an artist, how much it meant to me.

I see writing as another form of art. In prose or in poetry, you have tha chance to create images and emotions in the reader's mind. So I put a spin on that quote for my blog name, and viola! Here we are, reasoning the concrete, because the difference between words and images is that words - by their very nature - reason things out. Images leave you to figure things out for yourself, if you can. I kinda try to do both here, wirting and posting images. (I'll be posting more drawings and photos now that I've gotten the hang of the html.)

That favored quote, if you don't want to click the link, is:

The work of art is born of the intelligence's refusal to reason the concrete. It marks the triumphs of the carnal.

Note: The image in the background of my new banner is the demon-thing I drew on my purse. Since writing and drawing both sort of "excorcise the demons," I figured it was appropriate.

It's Cute Time!


Meet Adonis, one of the newest Chinese Crested puppies at Unicorn Chinese Cresteds, a Chinese Crested (hairless and powderpuff) breeder in Florida. Almost too cute, yes? This is the breeder I will eventually get a hairless crested pup from. Someday. When I've gone on to a much, much better and better-paying job with my Bachelors and Masters degrees.

I don't know what it is about those so-damn-ugly-but-so-damn-cute dogs, but I just love Hairless Chinese Cresteds. They have great personalities as well as looks, from all that I've read (and my love of these dogs borders on obsession, so I've read a lot). I fell in love with the breed at first sight, and cannot wait to have one (or two) of my own.

I can't get one right now because A) my apartment complex doesn't allow dogs, no matter how small, and B) even if it did allow them, the place is way too small for a dog, even a tiny lil' Chinese Crested. I'd feel bad about having one where I live now. Oh, and C)- college takes up pretty much all the time that I'm not at work instead, so even if I livd in a huge house, with a huge back yard, I still couldn't bring myself to get one because I'd have no time for it.

But, someday I will. Once I go back to the accelerated schedule, I'll graduate with my Bachelors degree in November of next year. I'll have my Masters degree in February of 2010. By the time I have my Masters degree, I'll have already gotten a better job than I have now with the Bachelors, and consequently moved to a bigger, better living space, so that when school is all done, I'll be in a place and position to take in a puppy or two (probably two) and have the time to spend with them properly. It's a longer wait than I'd really like (I want a pup now, of course), but it will be best in the end not just for me but for the pup as well, and that's important.

So, a pup or two will be my "Hey, I finally got my Masters degree!" gift to myself. It's the wonderful, cute, playfull, nude icing on the cake, so to speak.

With the pup (or two) I'll also want a kitten (or two). Actually, it would probably be best to get one of each, rather than two of each - four little fuzzy things might be a bit more than I can handle. The kind of cat I want to get is a Scottish Fold. You know - those round, fuzzy, little cats with the folded over ears? Too cute. I must have one. I'd always been enamored of them, but then a video of two Scottish fold kittens playing and waddling around was posted on my favorite site,, and that was it. I was hooked. (That site is evil, I tell you. Evil! Go check it out; you'll like it ...)

So those are my graduation gifts to myself, in the spring of 2010; a Chinese Crested and a Scottish Fold. I wish it was 2010 now ...

If you get a chance, check out the Unicorn Chinese Cresteds website- it's very well put together website with tons of info on the breed as well as good info on breeders, what to watch for when buying animals from breeders, etc. Oh, and serisouly cute photos. Gotta check out those photos. Go, now, and enjoy!

I am off to do work-type stuff (yay), so you'll have to do the "ohmygodcutepuppies!"-drooling for me, k? K.

Ready for a slowing-down

This term is almost over.

My second-to-last assignment is due tonight at midnight, and the last one is due Thursday at midnight. From Friday on (or erlier if I get that last assignment done early) I have a week to relax. A week of nothing to worry about after work, nothing to feel guilty about not doing on the weekends. A week of sleep undisturbed by dreams of Excel spreadsheets that somehow just won't line up correctly and calculations that never seem to end because the formulas keep circling back on themselves. A week of making dinner - real, actual, whole-meal dinners - myself just because I can; I have that time to spend as I see fit. A week of staying up hours past my bedtime not because I'm working on assignments but because Matt and I are wrapped up on the couch watching all the movies we haven't been able to see together for the past five and a half weeks.

I won't have to worry about how I'll make up the time I'll lose if I leave work early to work on school stuff, or how I'll pay the bills if I don't make up that time. I won't have to try to study and research in those random free minutes at work and hope that whatever information I gather in such a broken manner makes sense later when it's time to apply it to a paper. I won't have to knock myself senseless with Melatonin in order to get half a night's good (hopefully dreamless) sleep, knowing full well that it will leave me fuzzy-headed and listless for a good five or six hours the next day, because I won't take it till I'm ready to go to bed, and such late hours mean I don't get a full 8 hours of sleep as recommended on the bottle.

This term is almost over, and I'm glad for it. I'm in need of it. I'm ready to slow down, with the coming of Autumn, and slowly meander into The October Country. I'm ready for a good book in hand, hot coffee or tea nearby, and a purring, drooling cat (or boyfriend) on my lap to keep me motionless and snuggly-warmfor the better part of the day.

I'm ready for a slowing-down.

Last night I was up till almost midnight calculating lines of figures in Excel, typing out descriptoins of the formulas used for those calculations to go with the tabels and charts copied and pasted from Excel to Power Point, and I'm stil not done. I still need to recommend either warehouse location A or warehouse location B as the better prospect for a future, 5-year project with a salvage value far less than the initial investment for either location. Then I have to perform a sensitivity analysis - a "what-if," if you will - to determine at what financial point either prospect would no longer be profitable. You know, just in case. Just to make me do a few more calculations.

Yes, I'm leaving work early today, but I still have sick and vacation time left to use to bring myself up to 80 hours for this paycheck, so it's all good. Unless I get sick later. But, that's a worry for later; this is now. I'll stock up on Airborne and tea and lucky rabit feet and all should be swell.

So what plans do I have for my week off? Nothing much, yet, and I kind of like it that way. This Friday I'll be going in to have some touch-ups done on my snake tattoo at noon, and we'll be having a barbecue with some friends for dinner. Matt is taking Saturday off to spend the day with me (now that I won't be stuck with my nose in a book or glued to the computer screen all day and evening), but we haven't decided what - if anything - we'll do. Maybe we'll spend the day outside, enjoying a picnic and the beautiful weather. Maybe we'll go see a movie. Maybe we'll stay in and watch a movie at home - or spend the whole day watching movies, piled warm on the couch with snacks. I don't know, and I don't care. I'll be with him with nothing nagging at the back of mind telling me I really should be studying; that's enough for me. Beyond Saturday, I have no plans - not even tenative ones. I kinda want to make plans to do things I can't when I have class, but at the same time I kimda want to just take it day by day, enjoying the lack of a schedule and the freedom that brings.

Maybe I'll work on some poetry. I've been dying to play with one of my older poems, one of my favorites that depserately needs some serious re-working. Old spider-webby skull-white moon/Bobs low on black horizon, smiling/Like Death's head greeting the saints/Who forgot to pray/After questioning faith./Eye-white gleam of moon and starlight glistens ... And it only gets better from there. It's the philosophical part of it I'm having trouble wording - I could describe till I'm blue in the face.

Maybe I'll draw. I have great leviathans in my head churning, wanting out, and mist-shrouded faeire glens waiting for the color to capture them - they beckon and I want to give in and play.

Maybe I'll design that new banner for this blog, once I settle on a new name. There've been a few suggestions, and they're good, but I'm not sold on anything yet. I'm still open to ideas. Light, dark, funny, philosophical, odd, random ... whatever.

Maybe, I'll do nothing more than play Sacred till I dream of that; certainly a good magical sword that's seen bloodier days can chase away the demons of Excel. Surely, adventuring through ghost- and minotaur-filled caves can ward off the baying hellhounds of contribution margins and mixed costs. Surely.

Maybe I'll do nothing. We'll see, and that theory alone is beautiful to me.

Random contemplations

I've pretty much decided to go back to the accelerated schedule at school, two classes per term as originally set, to graduate in a more timely manner. You know, like a rat - leave the sinking ship of my job as soon as possible, and all that. But what I wonder about is, should I then turn around and dive right into my Master's? Like any other break between terms, I'd only have one week off between graduating from the Bachelor's program and beginning the Master's. One week. I'd like to take a couple months off, but the sooner I start it, the sooner I'll have my Master's degree. Thoughts?

I love my hair color now - the black with the bleach-blonde patch of bangs and top - but I wonder if it would fit into the professional business world. I'm finally letting it all grow, and that means continuing to dye it black and bleach it blonde every four to six weeks, but is the effort worth it? Or will I end up just going with one uniform color once I have that degree and start applying for a better job? Should I enjoy it while it lasts, or try to blacken some of the blonde for a more conservatively-punkish look?

Speaking of toning things down for the "Professional World," I need to find a way to hide the inch and a half or so of snake tongue that peeks out below the wrist and actually onto my hand. It can't be covered with long sleeves. The rest of my tattoos can be easily hidden if I so choose, but not that little bit. So my options are this:

1. Laser tattoo removal, which is expensive. If I don't have the money to get more tattoos, where am I gonna find the money to un-get them?

2. Movie make-up; the kind they use to cover an actor or actresses real tattoos for characters that don't have any. I'd have no idea where to find it, but I'm sure a quick google search would turn up something useful. But, then I'd have to worry about remembering to put the makeup on my hand every morning. What if I forgot one day, and no one wanted to belive it was just Sharpie because I got bored? What if an uber-conservative higher-up told me to wash the "Sharpie" off and stop being silly?

3. Creative fashion: I could bring back the good ol' Reniassance days of thick frothy lace at cuffs and throat, which would cover it nicely. I think it would be smashing coupled with a nice suit-jacket, but I can just imagine how it might get in the way of typing.

And using the restroom.

4. Band-aid/Ace Bandage/wrist glove. This would only work temporarily, unless I went with the band-aids and pretended I had some sort of open wound on my hand that just never happened to heal. A little fake blood/pus/tentacles and no one would be rude enough to say anything, probably. Of course, then I wouldn't be invited out for coffee either, but I'm ok with that. I'm really not much of a people person, friendly though I may be.

School and generally just being an adult with bills is forcing me to accept the fact that I may never become a tattoo artist. It was my dream for a long time, and I still enjoy entertaining thoughts of it, but it's not likely to happen with the path my life is taking. Becoming a tattoo artist (a respected and properly-educated one, any way) requires an apprenticeship. That requires money. I don't have money, so I'm going to college to get money. But once I'm done with college and have a job that pays me enough for an apprenticeship, that job will probably pay more than being a tattoo artist, and while I'd love to follow my heart, it's funny how monthly bills, food and gas just don't agree with that particular ideal. Besides, then I'd have one - no, two - degrees in business which would be going to waste because if I'm gonna be doing artsy stuff all day, every day, I want nothing whatsoever to do with the business side of it. The two do not mix. And well, $50,000 is a fuck of a lot of money to waste on two pieces of paper, no matter how nice the frames. So I'll stick to being the poke-ee rather than the poke-er, most likely, and that makes me more than a little frustrated, but it's not like I can't draw on other things. Like, paper.

I've decided that "When dragons laugh, life is good," is great, but doesn't really fit well for this blog. I mean, it's cute and all, kinda-sorta-in-a-way-philosophical, but not really accurate to the feel of most of my posts. It promises funny posts, and much as I'd like to, I just don't do funny very often. So, I'm contemplating a new name (and consequent banner), and I'm open to suggestions. I'd like to keep dragons in it somehow, but give it a more down-to-earth feel, like "I'm just your average, humble, know-it-all, angst-ridden, easily amused, allergy-striken, and generally over-friendly person." Something artsy, maybe. Or bookish. Or just plain odd but fun. Really; help me out here.

I need to get into the habit of dressing better. But, that costs money, because that means new clothes. Like, businessy-type clothes. And I don't have money, which is why I'm going to college: to get a better job that will give me more money, so I can buy things like newer, nicer, more "take me seriously because I'm smart, damnit," clothes. Only, that job will require that I already have those clothes. I can get them before I graduate and get that job, but it will be a slow process and I want to get used to wearing such things so that I'm more comfortable in them when it comes time to be a "real adult." Which means, I kinda need them soon-ish. Like, now would be great. Alas.

I want a pen pal. A good old fashioned, handwritten on nice paper, talking about life rather than "Hey s'up, biatch?", pen pal. Of course, I'd probably never have time to write back, so it would be a riduculously short-lived experience, but it has an irrestistable appeal, like frothy lace and bad romance novels.

I want a Jeep. 'Nuff said. It's Matt's fault.

And finally, I want comments, damnit. I ask - no, I demand - that you post a comment to this blog. Even if I don't know you. Even you don't care, or have nothing to say beyond "I'm commenting. So there."

... Please? It would make my day, because I'm just sappy like that.

Drawing In

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Sometimes being a Cancer really sucks.

Note: This isn't how I feel right now, or how I've felt very recently. Just had a Cancer evening one night, drew it out, and have only just now gotten around to scanning it in and posting it.

Morning for a Masochist: Photoblog

Morning Sky

Took this photo this morning with my phone. I was in the parking lot at my work at just a few minutes before 7 a.m. and I was sleepy but not so much that I couldn't enjoy the beauty of this sky. I only came in to work so ridiculously early today because I'm leaving early to go back home to do school work (the mathematic side of accounting sucks, I'm here to tell you), and so wanted to pre-emptively make up some of the time I'm going to lose. Feeling like a reluctant masochist at being up and at work so damned early, the title for this blog popped into my head and I snapped the shot.

Praying Mantis

I was going to post just the Morning for a Masochist photo, but then remembered the praying mantis I found yesterday on a break. I am convinced this is the same one I've saved from certain man-made death several times this year already. It likes to hang out on the jams of sliding doorways, or on the bar-handles of the front doors at work but in the inner side so that anyone walking up to the door won't know it's thereuntil they grab the handle and squish the poor lil' thing. It put up with my camera-phone-photo-shoot for about five minutes before finally leaping off my hand onto a vine.

Sky Lizard

Then I remebered the spiffy (actual camera) shot of this Blue Belly (Western Fence Lizard) who had somehow managed to climb up onto the roof of my best friend's parents' house and thought then that sun bathing on the skylight over the kitchen sink would be a great idea. This was at my friend's boyfriends' Death of aPirate murder mystery birthday party. Unfortunately, I don't have any of those photos readily available, or I'd post one of a bunch of people dressed like pirates. We all had an eye patch and joked that because of this any ship we crewed together would have gone in circles and been the laughing stock of pirates everywhere.

Pass Side Suicide

And to wrap up my early-morning photo blog, I have to post this. Matt and I were behind this guy (yes, that's the front of Matt's Jeep there, all black and sexy) getting off the freeway one day, and I couldn't resist. I love it when the consequences of being stupid have to be spelled out in spray paint, probably because one too many stupid people tried something stupid and died.

Good morning, everyone. And good day, and remember: look up at the sky often (because there just might be lizards soaring, legs splayed, overhead), and don't pass Big Rigs on the right.

Accidentally risqué

I am a creature of habit, and being such I have come to depend on certain things being generally the same each day simply because they almost always have been in the past. Makes sense, right?

So, knowing that at my work it's usually cold enough to hang meat I planned on wearing my most favorite, overlarge, comfy hoodie to work today. It's the black one that says "System Of A Down" on the front in bright, almost glow-in-the-dark pale green , with a black and almost-glow-in-the-dark pale green picture of the band on the back. I love that hoodie. However, when wearing a sweater/sweatshirt/coat/jacket at work to stave off the cold I have also realized that every once in a while, when the air conditioning clicks off for about twenty minutes or so because it's become too cold, it can actually begin to get hot, and so the sweater or whatever needs to come off. This bears the wearer to the now even more ridiculously cold air, but is a necessary discomfort to avoid the worse trauma of being hot (I loathe being hot, which is ironic as I live in California). It is aggravating, to say the least. It usually drives me batty.

I thought I'd be smart this morning.

My System hoodie is just thick enough to keep me warm against the arctic office gales, but (usually) just thin enough to not be sweltering. It does get a bit warm when the air conditioning kicks off, however, so there's where I needed to be clever. Instead of wearing just a regular t-shirt under the hoodie, which is my usual attire and thicker than desired, I instead slipped on one of my lace-trimmed tank tops. I chose this particualr one because the fabric is very thin and so keeps me cool and, paired with the hoodie, I thought the combination should be just about perfect. The hoodie would protect me from wintery air conditioning, and the thin tank top underneath would prevent me from getting actually hot when the a.c. kicked off for a bit every now and then.

I thought it was a fool-proof plan, but then it was only 6:30 in the morning.

Attired thusly, I stumbled groggily into work this morning (I was up pretty late last night computing accounting stuff and my brain is still twitching). About ten minutes later I began to realize that instead of nicely comfortable I was beggining to feel a bit warm. Within another five minutes I had desperately clawed my hoodie off and tossed it in the corner, and I was still hot.

Unlike damn near every other day of the friggin' year, it's hot at my work today. Rather than running th e a.c. to polar bear standards, the heater is on in what I can only assume to be an attempt to convince rattlers and scorpions and camels and other desert creatures to make this place home.

Remember I had mentioned that the tank top's material is very thin? Because of that I'm now only very mildly warm, but have a bigger problem of a different sort. Lightweight fabric means there is usually a level of sheerness. All one has to do is take on glance at me to realize that I was wise this moring and wore a white bra with my white tank top, and that the bit of tattoo readily seen above the fabric on my upper back does in fact continue all down my back, beneath the fabric.

I may as well not be wearing a shirt at all. But, I'm not hot.

The only other shirt-type articles of clothing I have at work to cover up with besides tmy System hoodie are two other, much heavier hoodies. I'm hoping that the a.c. will kick on in a few minutes, but if it doesn't with in the next ten or fifteen, I'll have to go back home to grab adifferent shirt. I've made this mistake before and everyone was wise enough then not to mention the see-though-ness of the shirt, but it's still rather more than awkward.

The moral of the story, of course - and Mama Wren and I w ere just talking about this yesterday - is to never ever depend on anything to be as you expect it to be. As soon as you do - no matter how logical and sound the assumption - the Universe will delight in proving you wrong.

Now, pardon me while I cover myself.

Duuuhhhhhh ...

Yeah. It's been one of those days. After attempting to determine how and where and when and why one would attempt to convert fixed costs to variable costs to cut costs in a business, I sorta feel like this. Like, "OH! I get it! Orrrr ... No, nevermind."

This fantastically giggle-inducing photo was capped and submitted to one of my favorite sites, I Can Has Cheezburger.Com, by theloveofisis (whoever that is, they're a genius).

Oh, chortle ...

And giggle. And squeak with glee.

Of the three assignments I've had so far this term, I have three A's. And the professor said that my work can be classified as "very good to excellent" on the second project, and on this, the third, "exceptional."

Oh, chortle, indeed. The dragon is laughing.

*Big grin*

I need a new job.

Hate This Place

Under the Surface

Sketched at work, colored in Photoshop.

What would my mother think?

Chest Tattoo

Yes, mom. I did just post a picture of my chest on the internet. Do you still love me?

This post is to show my dragon chest tattoo better than it appears in the "new Hair" post of a couple weeks ago. I drew the tat myself, and specified that it be done in light greys as it appears, so that it almost looks like a pencil drawing (my preferred medium).

This tattoo has brought me endless entertainment, simply because of its location. I can't tell you the number of times I'd be standing in line at the store or Starbucks and see someone trying to look at the tattoo without being noticed becuase they don't want to be accused of staring at my cleavage. The looking is usually done in sly, nervous, sideways glances and when the looker notices that I've noticed them looking, they get red-faced and stammer and look away, mumbling quickly something along the lines of "that's a beautiful tattoo." I just grin and say thanks.

Once, across a crowded deli, a cashier did a double-take, stared hard, then cracked up laughing. At my amused but confused look, she explained, "that's a great tattoo, but from here it looked like you had hair on your chest." Not quite the effect I was going for, but hey - it made for a good chuckle.

I'd post a pic of the one on my butt, but ... Kidding. I don't have one there.