The Poppy

A Judge, moi?

My mom would be so proud. I am finally a Judge.

Granted, it’s not for a court of Law, but it’s still called being a Judge so I’m totally counting it. Ever since I watched Night Court as a little kid, I had this dream. Updating my résumé now… 😉

Anyhoo, my good friend NYCWD (you all know Dawg, right? He’s famous for this thing he does… What’s it called again? You know his thingy video thing… He dates another famous person… You know? ) asked me to be one of the esteemed judges for his Social Media Responder 2009 (#SMR2009) contest.  You can see my killer profile and even more awesome profile picture on PIO Social Media Training. Sweet, right?

HillyMike

hillymike
If you’re too lazy to visit…

As an added bonus, I will be under Hilly for the duration of this contest.

As a Judge, my duties include – but are not limited to – receiving bribes, drinking Scotch, arguing with other Judges (I AM THE LAW!), Wearing a goofy hat and walking around naked under a robe. I think I’m overqualified really. But what’s higher than a Judge, really?

Anyways, when I submitted the picture above, I took like a million of them – I’m not really photogenic so it’s hard for me to find a picture I like without photoshopping the fat Hell out of it – And I thought I could amuse you with some of the rejected profile pictures. Enjoy!

TicTacMike

My mom would be so proud. :mrgreen:

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I don’t have a microwave. Really.

Yesterday on Twitter, I was told by Avitable that he had a hard time believing I lived without a microwave. Poppy believed me.

avi

Well to be fair I think his disbelief was much more about me telling the truth, but let’s not focus on that, m’kay? 🙂

So here it is, proof I don’t own a microwave:

I blogged about it on April 27, 2007. I never replaced the microwave since that day. Part of the reason is that we really don’t need a microwave, and part of the reason is that LovelyWife wants a model that goes above the stove, and most of those models requires a vent to the outside, which my kitchen does not possess at this point. Anybody owning a house knows of the domino effect when it comes to renos, and in our house we somehow go from a vent to the outside to redoing the bathrooms and the basement. Don’t ask, it’s complicated.

Look at these:

Micro1

This is where the microwave should be.

Well, this is where the old microwave was. Like I said, the new one should be above the stove.

Micro2

Once the Corn Flakes are removed, you can see the power outlet.

So there you go, proof that I don’t own a microwave.

So what about you? Is there anything you don’t have that other people think that you’re somewhat crazy because you don’t? I’m paraphrasing Avitable, of course. I don’t think he thinks I’m crazy. Well not for not having a microwave anyways. 🙂

Quirky

All right.

Yesterday I Tweeted that LovelyWife was a little weird quirky. Poppy told me you’re supposed to use quirky instead of weird when I talk about LovelyWife. Makes sense.

Anyhoo, I said LovelyWife was quirky because she can spend hours watching previews. Some of you Tweeted back that it was perfectly normal, and I explained that I didn’t mean previews at the movies (those are a must) or a television show were they’d show previews of upcoming movies for half an hour: I meant previews from the PPV channel. Previews from movies that came out years ago. Previews from movies we have already seen in the theater months or years ago. Previews from movies we own on DVD.

No in order to redeem myself a little, let me tell you about a few things that make me quirky weird.

1) I floss before and after brushing my teeth. I have massive spaces between my teeth, and that first floss is necessary to dislodge bits of food stuck in those spaces. If I only floss afterwards, I feel that the spaces between my teeth are still dirty – if there was food in there, no toothpaste ever went there, right?

2) When I forget to wear my wedding ring, I feel naked and I tend to hide my hands so people will not notice that I don’t have it on. This happened less then 10 times in the past 14 years, and on many of those occasions I backtracked home to put it on before getting back to my regular scheduled activities. BTW: This is a complete departure from LovelyWife’s habit of wearing hers. In fact, I often say that when I celebrate my 15th wedding anniversary by booking an Alaska cruise, I’ll have to bring the bedside lamp because my wife’s wedding ring spends half of it’s time on there. This is part of the secret why LovelyWife and I are sticking together so long; We’ve only been married 7.5 years! Which brings me to my next thing…

3) I’ve been married to a lamp for 7.5 years now. 😉

4) I like reading instruction manuals. I have read every single instruction manual that came with anything I bought – cover to cover. If the manual is in English and French, I read both languages. I have a few manuals that are in English, French and Spanish. In those cases, also “read” the Spanish part even if I can’t really read Spanish. It doesn’t matter how simple the product is: I RTFM. As a corollary, a lot of the manuals I read multiple times. Very few novels have I read multiple times.

5) I will only park in certain specific parking spaces. I always park the car to protect the right side. I’m obsessed with preventing any dings on the car, and I figured that protecting the right side prevents me from circling the car every time I get in (since I always see the left side getting in the car). To further illustrate, here’s my grocery store parking lot:

parkingLoblaws

I will only park in the orange spots. And you can totally see my car there. Clicking makes it bigger.

So there you have it. Five more things that make me… Well, if you love me you’ll say quirky. If not you’ll say weird. I’ll let you decide.

Québec Day 4: So long, and thanks for all the fish!

Let me start with a TUA à la Kapgar: Happy Birthday to my long-lost sister Poppy! I hope you have an awesome year! It’s the year of the Poppy! XXX. 😉 So head over there and wish her a happy birthday. Go, I’ll wait for you to come back.

There. On with the show:

On our last day in Quebec City we visited the Parc Aquarium du Québec. Because of the “du”, I had high expectations. It might not be obvious to my non French readind readers, but the difference between “de” and “du” is really important. You see, “Aquarium de Québec” would mean “Aquarium of the town of Quebec”, but “Aquarium du Québec” means “Aquarium of the whole province of Quebec”. I figured that if they bothered using the “du”, I was going to get quite a show.

PPP

I’d like to say that getting there was half the fun, but really it was more like 97% of the fun. Of course, I’m somewhat exaggerating, but I found that the state of disrepair of the different displays, combined with the cold weather and the crappy cafeteria food (I know, what did I expect, right?) made the whole experience meh.

I took this pictures at one of the fist displays, but it could’ve been any of them, really. Really.

OOO

I kept hitting the blue button, Matrix-style. No dice.

But, I smiled and played through the pain, and the kids had a pretty good time.

Thus concludes our escapade tu Québec City. If you’re so inclined, you can view all the Québec 2009 pictures on my Flickr.

And please, don’t forget to wish Happy Birthday to Poppy. 😉

My love for Canada explained

I am Poppy, Mikey’s long lost sister.  We finally found each other in 2006 through — who else? — Avitable.  I’m not sure how widespread the secret is, but everyone finds everyone else through Avitable.  It’s just a fact.

ANYWAY, yesterday Becky dared not do what I am about to do: Talk about all the times I’ve been to Canada.  Having lived in Vermont for the first 33 years of my life I actually went an obscene number of times.  A day trip to Canada was a frequent thing in my neck of the woods.  So I’ll just mention a few of my most memorable journeys:

1. Shopping in Montreal with my mommy. I needed school clothes.  My mom had the most brilliant idea ever to take me to Montreal to go shopping there.  I’m pretty sure I had been on a school trip recently and had loved it but had no money on me to buy clothes while all my friends around me were buying the clothes I looooooooved.  So, Mom and I piled in the car and did a road trip to a mall in Montreal!  We had a great time choosing severely funky clothes for me to wear.  Then we ate in the mall’s food court, bought lots of gum (my brother and I both have a thing for gum, it’s hereditary but inexplicable), and drove home.  My kinda trip!

2. Visiting one of my first online friends who went to Canada for college. My Best Friend Forever at the Time (BFFatT) was a boy I’d met through an online BBS where geeky kids chatted for hours and hours on the computer.  We also knew a chick named Shira (princess of POWER!) who was a bit older than us.  When she had been in college for a couple years my BFFatT and I randomly decided we wanted to go visit Shira at her Montreal apartment, so we did.  We drove up in BFFatT’s car, and when we arrived we somehow got talked into eating raw garlic cloves on a dare then I accidentally found (and handled without knowing what it was) Shira’s bedtime toy.  That’s all I’ll say about that.  After visiting we went to a local pizza joint and had (what else?) garlic pizza then drove home.

3. Going to Montreal to drink with all my friends who were over 18 but under 21. I can’t quite remember who all went, there were that many of us, but the first bar we went to was an Irish bar.  Yah, we went alllllllll the way to Canada to drink at an Irish bar.  We didn’t know what we were doing, though.  We didn’t tip the bartender at the right time so he stopped serving us and we left.  Then we went to a more Montreal flavored bar on St Catherine Street and I had my first ever Sex on the Beach.  Ah, mon dieu, I was in love at first sip.

4. Going to the gay bar, gay bar, gay bar to dance with my gay boyfriend. In my senior year of college I hung out with a gay guy.  We went to Montreal together so he could pick up boys. We went shopping first and I bought a really cute short dress but I only had my Tevas.  So I went out dancing in my Tevas and short dress.  I somehow got plastered enough so that I would actually dance on the dance floor.  I don’t remember if he picked up anyone or not, I just remember being very comfortably numb. 🙂

5. Visiting  Canadian Parliament. In my second senior year of college (it’s a long story that boils down to: I switched my major my first senior year) I had an actual boyfriend who took Canadian Studies class with me.  For Valentine’s Day weekend there was an optional school trip to Canadian Parliament in Ottawa.  My boyfriend and I both decided to go and I don’t know about him, but I had a fantastic time.  We watched the pre-Parliament procession, actually sat in on that session of Parliament, had a drinks party with members of Parliament after (free boooooooze), had a formal dinner in the Parliament restaurant (beef tenderloin medallions in a deliciously rich brown sauce), then we went for a walk to look at the ice sculptures on display nearby.  And this was all for class credit!  Is that not insane?!

6. A random visit to my employer’s head office au Canada with my boss who I hated. I worked for an international clothing company at the time, in the US head office’s IT department.  When I first started working there I loooooooved my boss, but she didn’t get along with the owners so she quit and a guy that she and the IT director used to work with at another place of employment was brought in as her replacement.  He and I got along like oil and water on a very bad day.  But for some reason that now escapes me we had to drive to Montreal together to go visit our Canadian head office so we did.  The president of the company happened to be visiting that day and I remember going outside to a canal and just watching the water go by.  The president and I discussed how wonderful Canada is… and then it was back to work.  And, of course my boss chose to drive us home during rush hour so it took 3 hours to get home instead of 1.5 hours, and he kept going the wrong way trying to get out of Montreal… And this is why GPS exists today!

7. Fondue in Québec City. My ex and I went to QC with BFFatT and his wife for a weekend getaway.  When we got there we found an incredible Swiss fondue restaurant and gorged ourselves on the magnificent liquid cheese and chocolate.  I tried the meat fondue but didn’t care for it.  I was allllll about the tomato-garlic cheese fondue.  And the beer that went with it.  And the aquarium we went to so I could stare at jellyfish.

8. Road trip to Halifax!!!!!!!!!!!! Same cast of characters on this trip.  We rented a Jeep Grand Cherokee and DROVE from Vermont, through Quebec, New Brunswick, and a bunch of Nova Scotia to arrive to Halifax.  The best part?  We had made NO reservations.  When we got to Halifax there was a big bowling tournament in town so we got the last room available at the third place we stopped at.  We then visited the most beautiful place on Earth: Peggys Cove.  We also went to the Meritime Museum, which was quite spectacular.  There was even an exhibit and a short film about the Titanic there!  I remember we ate at a steak house but I was feeling green in the gills so didn’t enjoy it as much as I should have.  Oh, yup, and we visited the Halifax Citadel.  Now, that’s a must see.

9. The return trip to Québec City for fondue!  And a lot of crêpes. This time I was with the ex, Break Boy, and a very first-timely pregnant Knitting Girl.  It was to be their last hurrrrrahhhhh before entering parenthood.  We walked around the city, ate at the same fondue place, and found a delicious place where I kept eating maple crêpes every time we went.  Delicious.  And I think we visited the street performers on the boardwalk about 5 times that trip.  I was entranced by the fireeating woman.  (I have a thing for fire.  It’s pretty.)  Actually, I’m trying to remember, but I think we had fondue twice on that trip.  That’s how much we all love cheese.

and… (drumroll please)

10. My fantasy trip to chez LeSombre (which technically hasn’t happened yet, but it will). Dawg and I will be invited to Mikey and LovelyWife‘s house and we will drink wine, eat fine cheeses, parler en français (I’ll teach Dawg some key phrases such as: “il faut uriner maintenant!!! … zut alors, où sont mes autres pantalons?” “où. est. la. bibliothèque??!?” “je voudrais manger vôtre poisson, SVP!” “qui a peté?!?!?! oh, c’est moi. 😀 “) and after our bellies are full and our minds are endrenched in sulphorous endorphins we will march over to Mikey’s work and tell off the garcons (bilingually, of course!).  Then we will return home, have a demi café, and ask the kiddos to go with us to the aquarium, museum, movies, a fine French restaurant, then a wonderfully charming pâtisserie.  Mmmmmmmmm, pain au chocolat….