Tuesday, January 31, 2006

How much rain can a person handle?

rain watcher
Living in the Pacific Northwest means you live with rain. “It’s what makes the skin of Northwesterners so beautiful and healthy.” That’s what a friend of mine once said. Bah.

We’re dealing with news headlines like…
The wettest January in 30 years
No relief for Portland, a city that is seeing the most January rain in 3 decades
Flood Watch issued by the National Weather Service
Rain forecast for the next kajillion years.
Yeah, whatever. I looked at my hand today and almost didn’t recognize the pale, ghostly appendage at the end of my long-sleeved arm. The freckles and “sun spots” on my face are so apparent. I don’t usually think I have freckles. (Doing these self portraits has brought this item to my attention.) But it’s the psychological crap this weather does to me that’s hard to handle.

Peeps, I grew up in Southern California. The beach on Christmas, summer clothes year round. Bare feet, tans, swimming, shorts: these weren’t just enjoyed for a few months a year. It’s engrained in my psyche to enjoy sun and sunshine. Do you know what it feels like when you lay in the sun, on a hot rock or cement, and the heat seeping through your body catches your breathe and just makes you go into the warmth? I love that feeling. And right about now, this time of year, I hang onto memories and thoughts like that.

And I stare out the window and dream. It’s a good time for me, too. It forces me to stop and reflect. Imagine. (And stare at my white scary hands.) I make a point to get out as soon as the sun is there (as I can), and wow, do I ever appreciate the sun this time of year. “Hello my friend!”
Rain rain go away
Please come back some other day
Or just give me a frickin’ break, okay?
rain watcher 2
Wet, cold, soggy, pasty white. That’s me. Happy Self Portrait Tuesday.

I always knew Chewbaca was a blogger

Finally. Chewbaca is blogging!

Monday, January 30, 2006

The most expensive and elaborate dog toy in the world

Before you roll your eyes back in your head and mutter "Oh gawd, another cute dog post" take a deep breath. No it's not. While Wink may be the cutest dog on the earth (admit it), she is still a puppy. Or, in her difficult and formitive teenage years, I suppose. What's 6 months in dog age? But despite the many many dog toys she has, she has decided she has a new one. And it's very elaborate. Here it is:
Wink's very expensive new toy
Came home to find this and its remains all over her room. No big deal. It's fun to watch her with it, actually. Not easy to get her photo with it. Here's the best I could do:
Wink playing with very expensive new toy
And lest you think taking photos of the cutest dog in the world is easy, here's proof that it's not. I gave AdRi the camera for a moment so she could take a photo of this scene. Wink just didn't want to cooperate for the photoshoot. Obviously.
Me attempting to photograph Wink and new toy

Ooohh look what I found today!

winter's violet
This sweet little violet is working so hard to keep it together in between the downpours, wind storms and all around blustery weather. And I'm referring to the photo there, not me. :)

One of my favorite North Portland things

How can you not love this? It's lovely. The St. Johns bridge recently went through a multi year restoration. And it was worth it. What a beautiful bridge and icon.

Had a great weekend: it's the beginning of a very busy next 30 days. Meetings and retreats on the weekends, a quick trip to Seattle for the Chickenhawks in the superbowl game, another trip to Chicago this month, deadlines up the ying yang, and my birthday will cap off the month of February. Here's just a forewarning: I tend to get depressed in February. It's the greyest, rainiest, gloomiest month, and my birthday never measures up to the parties and birthdays of my childhood. Don't say you haven't been warned....

Friday, January 27, 2006

5 bloggers all in a row

5 bloggers all in a row
It's pretty cool meeting fellow bloggers. I haven't met a freak yet. You figure you already know so much about each other, it's kind of weird when you meet in person: is your blogging persona different than your real self? I don't know, but I do know that I feel so lucky to have gotten to know Anna and Brett, and today, I met MerchMikey and Bevs! So here we all are, left to right, me, Beverly, MerchMikey, Superinky and Brett. And the fabulous grey cloudy Portland skyline in the background. Can I just say? Beverly is like the sweetest thing ever and MerchMikey and I could talk shop talk all day. Love that! And Anna and Brett, you know how much I adore you guys. So there you go. Feelin' the love peeps. Feelin' the love.

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

Femme undone. Self Portrait Tuesday.

just me
Lipstick lesbian. That's what I am. I suppose. Though I hate labels. Dyke. Butch. Femme. Gender queer. Stone butch. I'm blanking on the others. But there's a ton. The L Word is throwing the topic around. Not through the words so much (though there was Moira's reference to Shane, "Come on, we butches can get it" referring to the heavy carrying of luggage), but the differences within the lesbian community are just as vast as any other spectrum or grouping in society. A lot of it is exposure, small town, big city, rural, and socio-economic: we know what we know and live within our bubbles. I identify as queer moreso than lesbian. But on the exterior, I'd probably fit the lipstick lesbian scenario: I like dresses, perfume, make-up, and anyone who knows me knows I like to do my hair. Hell, I think everyone in my blogosphere knows about my hair.

But on the weekends, during the day, I don't wear make up. I wear my hair in ponytails.

Kind of like this when I was 10:

So there's Self Portrait Tuesday, peeps. Until next week...

Monday, January 23, 2006

Wink has a birthday

Hey: they celebrate 6-month-old birthdays on The L Word. So why not? Happy birthday to Wink and her sister, Ginger.
happy birthday wink

On to other news....had a craptastic day today. But I figure things can only be looking up after a full blast of craptastic. Wink agrees.
things are looking up

Sunday, January 22, 2006

I wasn't going to post this.

But then I changed my mind. My little sony camera didn't want to cooperate and use its flash, so this will just have to do. I'm only going to do the rest of this post in poetry.

Limber, limber
Shiver me timber.
A night out with the girls
How did we end up here?
Portland's oldest strip club.
Mary's is quite the hub.
The pole those shoes
Grace and the splits
Humor and ease
Amazing bodies
Recovering Straight Girl
We need to party together more often.

My heart belongs to Torrie.

Where I blog

where i blog
I learned photostitch yesterday. And I feel like a whole new world has opened up to me. I haven't taken the time to really get to know what my camera can do, and photostitch is pretty cool. This photo is actually made of 4 different photos put together. You can do panoramas, really tall elements pieced together, you name it. I can't wait to take some photos in the garden....aahhh, the garden. I may start blogging about that some more. It's only January, but I'm already dreaming....

Friday, January 20, 2006

Seven things you really need to know: linky links

Anyone else thanking jeebus that it’s the weekend? I seriously need to sleep in. This morning we had dueling snooze buttons. AdRi’s alarm, snooze. LeLo’s alarm, snooze. Repeat 10 times. Tomorrow? I’m sleeping in.

So the bruddah doesn’t post to his blog much anymore since he’s busy busy with a new baby and all, but he sure does send some nice ones. I take it it’s my duty to share them with you. And I threw in some extra goodies for the hell of it. Bon appetit!

1. Will Farrell’s Global Warmin Talk….“ Adam and Eve drove an Excursion.”

2. Need razor: please send:

3. Take a few moments and dream with Sigur Ros.

4. But is he wearing any pants?

5. Watch out for mean Elmos.

6. While there are no photos to substantiate it, the parental unit happened upon a Bible Retail Outlet at their local outlet Mall in San Marcos, Texas. Parked in front was a truck, with a goat in back. My dad thinks it was for sacrificial purposes. What can I say? It runs in the family.

7. And finally, the frequent poster here known as Anonymous L has finally gone and done it: she has a blog. Welcome Bemused!

Happy weekends peeps! Oh, and if you live in Portland, word is we're going to have a break from the rain this Sunday! Wow!


Tuesday, January 17, 2006

Isaac Mizrahi is an ass

When did it become okay to grab women’s asses, their boobs or ask if they got a brazilian for the Golden Globes? Evidently in Isaac Mizrahi’s little corner of the world, it’s perfectly fine. BLECHT. What an ass.

If you missed it, the red carpet preshow to the Golden Globes was hosted by Ryan Seacrest (hello, I’m obviously in the closet trying very hard to play it straight), some woman I don’t know who she was, and on the carpet with the stars was Isaac Mizrahi. Fashionista, designer, whatever.

On the red carpet, he was obviously out of his league. He didn’t know where to look nor where to hold his microphone. (That could be cute, actually.) But his shtick was based upon asking women if they were wearing any underwear. And then he started grabbing butts, asking “shocking” questions, and totally groping Scarlett Johansson’s boobs. When he did this, she just stood there, totally in shock, and said something along the lines of, “Did he just really do that?”

Yes, he really did. And when they cut away to his cohorts, they asked the same question. Did he really ask Eva if she shaved down there for the special night? And one of them answered, “I guess you can (ask those questions) if you’re gay!”

Hmm. So if you’re gay, it’s okay to grope on women?

But the real crème de la crème was Isaac’s question to the beautiful Charlize Theron. Upon complimenting her, he asked her what’s up with all of her roles being ugly dykes. Yes. He used the word dyke. Charlize was obviously surprised and handled it very gracefully. But come on, Isaac. That is totally not cool. It’s not okay to hate on people like that, and it’s certainly not okay to grab people.

But it’s really bothered me and made me think about it today: the cohort who excused him from his inappropriateness because he’s gay? What’s THAT about? If you’re a gay man, you’re not a “threat” therefore it’s okay to cross social mores and physical boundaries and tweak some titties? I really don’t want to accept that. But the ugly dyke thing is just a lame ass stereotype that should not be perpetuated among the general public. Isaac’s comment may have been okay within a conversation among friends, but on television?!

Okay, I’m done with my rant, but I’m also done with Isaac Mizrahi: he sucks.

Self Portrait Tuesday

self portrait: me and my leso
My sister-out-of-law*, NoRi, is working and living in Southern Sudan. She has a fascinating job, and is an amazing and worldly woman. She lives in the realm of international workers, and has lived all over the place. We felt lucky when she lived “close” recently, in Washington DC. But alas, she’s off on another assignment, and is currently in Kenya and the Sudan. She sent a wonderful Christmas box, and in it included Kenyan coffee and several “lesos”, and the scarf I’m wearing in today’s Self Portrait Tuesday.

I miss NoRi, but I’m glad she’s living her dream. She says that her camera is a wonderful tool for meeting and interacting with the local people: they love seeing themselves and are entranced with it. It’s a common language, pictures, that’s not hindered by language.

*Yes, she’s AdRi’s sister, but I feel weird calling her my in-law, because actually, current law doesn’t recognize our relationship. Thus, we’re outlaws! Ooh la la!

Monday, January 16, 2006

It’s got to stop.

new outfits make me feel giddy
I’ve become the woman I used to make fun of.

I have a cute little dog. And though she’s just a little bit big to be classified a purse dog, she does fit in a tote. And you know we have one for her, right?

This weekend I cleaned out some drawers in the kitchen and she has her own snack drawer now.

Retractable leash, and several soft leashes. One is tiger print. The retractable one is hot pink.

Have you seen her Christmas present bling? It’s a bejeweled collar. Hot pink.

She has two soft beds at home, and a pink and white puffball bed under my desk at work.

Her meals are dry kibble mixed with wet pouches. She prefers it not too cold. And chicken over fish.

We have wipes for her eyes, clean up wipes, and special eye pads to help with the tear stains.

She had a holiday sweater and a santa suit. She has a yellow rain coat, lined with blue fleece. Detachable hoodie.

And don’t even get me started on toys. Kong, bird, Godzilla, mini fetch ball, long dog, puppy dog, Barc Jacobs shoe toy, frog, I’ll stop there.

Greenies, dentabones, chewsticks (I call them her buttersticks).

This is ridiculous. How did I become the childless woman with two cats and a dog I dote over? I believe I’m what’s called a DINK. Dual income no kids.

Today’s the last day of shopping accroutements. It is. Really. Because today I moved on to ensembles. You know, full outfits. Accessories. Hey, she got a haircut and she’s cold! She needs a sweater! Oh my, a sweater with a fur collar….

It needed the matching bow.
i match

But that’s a little fancy. Look at the outgoing violet fleecewear.
With matching violet felt flower bow.
i feel violet today

The winter scarf is fetching, don’t you think?
fresh in from the slopes

OH MY GOD. I swear it’s ending here. I SWEAR. No more.

And for gods sake, I will NEVER do this .

I promise.

Sunday, January 15, 2006

Haircuts gone wild and freak out courtesy of Yoko Ono

You know when you say, “Just a little bit off the top?” and you leave with hardly anything left on your head? That’s what a puppy cut is. News to me!

Here’s Wink a week ago:

Isn’t she pretty? We had portrait time and she was so good. It’s hard to set the focus on a puppy wiggling all over the place.

This is Wink today.
this is what a puppy cut looks like

I’m not saying it’s a bad thing. It’s just, uh, a bit of a shock. And they were real, real nice and all, but I love my shaggy Wink! Alas, no more shag.

So listened to lots of music today, and the living room speakers are still freaking her out. She runs in there barking, thinking there’s something going on, when it’s just music. She’s getting better, but when it comes to Yoko Ono? Uh, watch out. Her ears go up, she cocks her head, and she starts to freak out.

This is Wink chasing her tail to Yoko Ono.
yoko ono makes me crazy IMG_3527.JPG IMG_3528.JPG IMG_3529.JPG

Then again, too much Yoko Ono makes me chase my tail, too. Pets provide insight to ourselves, don’t they?

Chew on that.

Saturday, January 14, 2006

It’s winter. Obviously. So here are some photos of summer instead. And other sundry items.

It was nice to be away from the constant rain for a few days, but as much as I like Chicago, it’s nicer to be home.

It’s really wet here. The ground is saturated. The doormat oozed water when I stepped on it.

Puddles. Moss. Lots of moss everywhere. Noticed a few billboards around Portland today, they were wet, soaked and looked to be sliding off their framework. I kid you not when I say I saw one covered in mold. (It’s that horrible one that says “He sped, now she’s dead.” WTF: that campaign sucks.)

It’s really wet. And cold. In fact right now, it’s 38 degrees outside (thanks to a totally cool gift from my dad: wireless outside/inside thermometer!). Picasso is trying to hog the heat from the laptop, and upon receipt of last month’s heating bill, we’re wearing layers and have lowered the heater. Damn, anyone else notice how high gas rates are?

So it’s the time of year I think of summer, or at least that thing called the sun, and days of flip flops, the garden, and monster bouquets from the garden.

Aah, an afternoon photographing a huge dahlia a kajillion different ways….and look! My feet actually saw the light of day! Remember that feet? Yes you, underneath those socks, the time will come again!
Memories of summer

Quintessential summer…
Quintessential summer

Until then, I have my shrine to gardening weather set up inside…
Stand in for summer

Hang in there ya’ll. Only another 2 or 3 months of the constant grey, pouring rain, and cold weather. Sigh.

Before I left Chicago, snapped these… a fur store (I knew I wasn’t in Portland when I came across this shop)
This picture is not in Portland...
And dusk…
Skyline Chicago

Happy weekend peeps!

Thursday, January 12, 2006

Photo from the Blogger Get Together

Here we all are! Can you guess who's who in the blogging line-up? Good times, peeps.

Sunset Magazine lists “Best of the West” and Portland’s Aerial Tram

I haven’t been following the hoopla, drama, visions or planning around Portland’s Aerial Tram, mainly thinking it’s probably so far in the future it will be years until I see it. Well, I think time is passing me faster as I get older because I just read it’s opening this fall.

Among my Christmas bounty was a subscription to Sunset Magazine. Sidenote here: I really like this magazine. My mom got it when I was growing up, and I guess I’ve just grown up with it. It’s like a grown-up, not snobby regional magazine. And while it may be a bit housewifey* I like the local focus on regional produce and recipes, garden and home projects that are environmentally responsible and good tips for weekend getaways or travel in the west. Okay, back on track…Reading my first issue included Best of the West. In the Best Public Transport section are three top picks: Bainbridge Island Ferry, Las Vegas Monorail, and Portland Aerial Tram. I didn’t think it was open yet, and it’s not. But here’s what they say…
In this city known for groundbreaking public works, the 500-foot-high tram is one to watch. Opening this fall, it connects the up-and-coming South Waterfront to Marquam Hill. Project manager Matt Brown promises that the cars’ futuristic aluminum skin will look “like soap bubbles floating in the air.” www.portlandtram.com

I’m looking forward to seeing it. I know there are folks out there in blogland who think it’s a boondoggle (rim shot) but I’m holding out judgement. I just hope it’s not only beautiful but ends up uniquely serving a transportation need.

Follow up to my post about the corner gentrification forgot:
I am hearing from the city that there’s really no regulation regarding business paint, which is surprising to me. For reference to my rant about a local corner (see above photo) and its lack of aesthetics, see here . I’m surprised: if there’s city regulation to aesthetics of snout houses, zoning, mowing your lawn, etc., I don’t understand how it’s okay to partially spray paint your business on a highly visible corner in bright green, let it drip all over the place, and not finish the job. I doubt this will be an issue in the “up-and-coming South Waterfront”, but it is an issue in North Portland.

*I’m touchy: someone recently subtly referred to me as the housewife type, and I was like, hey now. I’m a busy business lady and a feminist lesbian activist (as described in a publication recently), but housewife?! Not that there’s anything wrong with being a housewife, but…..

Wednesday, January 11, 2006

Scenes from a day.

Everybody, let's focus group!
IMG_3322.JPG IMG_3341.JPG IMG_3345.JPG IMG_3342.JPG IMG_3336.JPG
I'm in Chicago again, and holy moly, the weather's nice...at least a lot nicer than what I hear Portland has been having! Okay, back to the focus groups...

Me, me and more me: Self Portrait Tuesday

Self Portrait Tuesday, a day late...I realize my blog has been a whole lot of me lately. Me, me and more me. That's a little different than what lelonopo has been in the past, I suppose. But frankly, it's my blog. So there.

I've been intrigued with self portraits lately. I learned so much this past year by taking photos in our garden: it was so much prettier than it was in my mind's eye. The camera allowed me to see the garden outside of the context of the building a "to do" list of what needed to be done in the garden and what was going wrong: I saw it in a whole different way. And it gave me ideas for where to go.

So I don't know where I'm going with this, but I think photography makes me think differently. And I've been having some tough times coming up with some good concrete long term goals I can commit to. It all comes down to what do I want? Who do I want to be? The hardest part is figuring out where to go: once I put it out there, I always make it happen. But right now, I'm not sure what to put out there. I hope that maybe through photography I can start to do that and figure all of that stuff out.

Thus, Self Portrait Tuesday. We'll try this once a week and see where it goes.

Tuesday, January 10, 2006

5 Strange Habits

What makes you a freak? Excuse me, what makes you unique? I suppose this can also be asked, what are your strange habits? And that’s what I was tagged with by RSG . Ugh. That’s hard! Even AdRi had a hard time helping me come up with them. But in the “spirit of the meme” and being tagged, I’ll give it that old college try.
1. Rubbing my feet on the cold sheet in bed. No, it’s not wrestless leg syndrome. But I can’t sleep with socks on, and I just like rubbing my feet against the sheets! Don’t ask.
2. I like a lot of lights on in the house. I’m from Southern California, people. These short winter days make for dark mornings and evenings. And if I’m home, I’m turning on the lights. Mood lighting, task lighting, overhead lighting: if I’m on the ground floor of our house, I’m turning on the lights in most of the rooms—in case I walk in there, I want to be able to see. I need light, I am not a vampire, and that’s why we have lightbulbs. And yes, they are energy efficient. It’s either lights, or a guaranteed 1-week vacation somewhere tropical every February. Life is all about choices.
3. I talk to my cats and they talk back to me. I have a certain voice they know, and I swear, they know exactly what I’m saying, and we have full conversations. “Picasso, how was your day?” “meow meow MEOW!” “Really? Did you look outside or sleep all day?” “Meow!” “Again? I hope you were nice to Frida today.” Delayed response, tail swishing, and then a soft “Meow.” “Now Picasso, we’ve talked about that, But tell me more about your day!” “Meow! Meow meow!” ……I think you get the picture here.
4. I make coffee every morning. That’s every morning. Constant. AdRi doesn’t know how to use our coffee grinder or coffee maker because I always make it. I worry about her coffee situation when I’m away on travel, and I think she even just goes to a coffee shop instead.
5. I’m an NPR junkie and have it on, even as background noise, just about all the time. With the advent of iTunes, I listen to KCRW in Santa Monica as well as Portland’s OPB Radio. When we’re gone and Wink is at home in her room, we leave the radio on for her. Of course it’s set to NPR. Today she’s listening to the Alito hearings and I hope she can catch me up next time I see her. It should be noted that I can’t stand pledge week and during that time I listen to Mark & Brian instead.
So now it’s my turn: Anonymous L, Mindless Girl , and Blu ? You’re next.

Sunday, January 08, 2006

Did you get your Rosca de Reyes on?

What? You tell me you didn't? Oh come on. January 6th was Kings day, and the holiday celebrated in Mexico with the traditional circle of bread called Rosca de Reyes. Inside the rosca is hidden a baby. AdRi tells me that if you're really poor, the baby is actually a lima bean. Back to the story....a plastic baby is hidden inside of the bread. If you are the person who gets the baby, then you have to throw another party on February 2nd.
Let's just clear it up now. I never get the baby. Last year we were in Austin and picked up the Rosca de Reyes and brought it to JaAmLo's for his birthday. I didn't get the baby. I didn't get the baby the year before either.
But guess who got the baby this year? That right peeps! Lelo!
We always save the babies, and they live on the window sill above the kitchen sink. But what the hell? This year's baby, courtesy of Su Casa in Hillsboro, was a frickin' freak. What kind of baby is this? It's pale white! And it looks more like one of those statues peeing than a baby in a rosca de reyes! Hey, this isn't right. Whatever.

Saturday, January 07, 2006

Four things you may or may not know about moi

Saw this meme over at Kami's and thought, what the hell. I'll play. So here's four things about me you may or may not know...

Four jobs you have had in your life:
~ piano teacher
~ marketing director
~ seamstress (sewing bows on crotchless underwear: paid by the piece)
~ residence hall director

Four places you've lived:
~ Camarillo, CA
~ Chico, CA
~ SE Portland
~ N Portland

Four TV shows you love to watch:
~ The L Word
~ What Not to Wear
~ Dog Whisperer (a new favorite!)
~ Daily Show

Four places you've been on vacation:
~ Tequila, Mexico
~ Bali
~ Western Australia
~ Kaui, Hawaii

Four websites you visit daily:
~ Google
~ Orblogs.com
~ Bloglines
~ Statcounter

Four of your favorite foods:
~ peppermint ice cream
~ chocolate
~ lasagna
~ drunken noodles

Four places you'd rather be right now:
~ On a beach in Rincon de Guayabitos, Mexico
~ Having a massage, specifically kneading out the tension and stress knot at the base of my neck and shoulder
~ Swimming in the North Fork of the Feather River in Northern California
~ Kayaking in Hawaii

Wanna play? Come on, you know you want to. Let me know if you do...

It's the weekend: don't you want some lovin'?

oh oh
Yes, it's time for puppy love. Watch out, here it comes.
here they come: kisses!oh no! it's kisses!no more!no tongue up the nose!
What? You want another piece of me? Bring it.
what? you want another piece of me?