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Archive for January 2004

Brian on Zoloft

Posted on January 22, 2004 by under Life.    

“Haven’t you noticed that ever since I’ve been on medication we’ve been fighting a lot less?”  Brian asked me yesterday.

“You mean to tell me all this time you had me convinced that I was the problem and the whole time it was really YOU?!”

For those of you who don’t know, Brian is on Zoloft.  He’s still trying to sell me the idea.  If he had his way, I’d probably be on it too.  He thinks I need it more than he does (thanks for the vote of confidence there).  I’d like to think I’m a perfectly sane, normal human being — thank you.  I think he’s you’re typical over-medicated American.  He refuses to acknowledge this because he says he’s “just taking Zoloft” but in my opinion taking even just one medicine that you don’t need is one too many.  He thinks he needs it though and he seems to think that it’s working so I just leave him alone.  I’m following some good advice I read on a shirt sometime ago.  It says, “Don’t mess with the medicated guy!”  Words to live by, trust me.

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Renee’s Birthday

Posted on January 18, 2004 by under Life.    

We went to Old Town (more specifically Old Chicago, Heroes and America’s Pub) with Renee and Thomas for Renee’s 21st birthday. It was fun. I wish the weather would’ve been more cooperative, though. We also ran into Misty, Kim and their friend at the Pub as you’ll see from the pictures that will follow.

It was really funny because on the way to dinner at Old Chicago, I was trying to call Renee from Brian’s phone. I had sent Renee’s mobile number as a business card to Brian’s phone because I knew that I wouldn’t be able to fit my phone with my Canon SD10 in my Dooney and Bourke micropurse that mom had gotten my for Christmas (which I absolutely love, by the way). It rang and rang and rang. I figured she probably didn’t recognize the phone number since I’d never called her from Brian’s phone before. When it finally got to the voicemail I stopped and thought, “That’s strange.. She sounds just like me.” And to think I hadn’t even started drinking yet! It sounded like me because it was me! I had called my phone because Brian saved the wrong phone number (he saved my number instead of Renee’s) to his phone on accident.
Anyway, here are the pictures. Enjoy!

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Oscar Wilde Cat

Posted on January 17, 2004 by under Babies.    

For those of you haven’t met Oscar (the little turd monster I mentioned in the previous post), here are a couple of pictures of him.

These pictures were taken right before Christmas. I was trying to wrap a present for Brian. As all of you know, our cats are very curious. Sometimes they’ll try to help me wrap presents but most of the time they just hinder the process. I don’t know why our cats love getting in boxes but as I was trying to put the top on the box, Oscar got in and would not leave. It would’ve ticked me off, if he didn’t look so adorable.

Anyway, if you ever get any gifts from us that have cat hair all over them you’ll know why. It’s because of our little helpers.

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Rude Cats

Posted on January 16, 2004 by under Babies.    

I couldn’t sleep so instead of just tossing and turning in bed, I decided to do something more productive. I decided to clean out the cat litter boxes. It’s one less thing for me to do tomorrow. I guess it is tomorrow right now but it’s like four in the morning and it’s not officially tomorrow to me until I actually get up around noonish.

Anyway, enough of the today-tomorrow technicalities. As usual Oscar was watching me like a hawk the whole time I was cleaning the cat box (read: scooping out the stinky little poopies and grody balls of pee). This gave me added incentive to work faster because Oscar is the rudest little shit in the world (I will explain below, brace yourself for a really long digression).

You see, having three cats, our current setup consists of two litter boxes. We’ve been through everything you can imagine, including LitterMaid, but we’ve found our current setup to be the best and least expensive solution. The automatic litter scooper thing would be best for someone with only one cat. We had it when we were living at the townhouse and even though we only had Hobbie back then it wasn’t working out too well. (1) Hobbie liked to annoy us by playing with the sensor and so you would hear the mechanical scooping sound every two seconds, (2) Brian wasn’t keeping up with tossing the poop trays so well that by the time he got around to replacing it the original tray would be overflowing and (3) as a result of this he would have to clean the thing completely by washing it out and somehow the shit always gets wet and it won’t work for a day or two until it was completely dry inside. It’s really a great invention and, I guess, it would work if we just weren’t so lazy. I suppose this is more of a “user” issue.

The next thing we tried, in our utter laziness and desperation, was the disposable cat litter box with clay (this is the non-scoopable kind) cat litter. They sell them individually at Dillon’s and Wal-Mart stores but I can’t find them on the internet to show you. I’m not very good at describing things but I’ll do my best. It’s a disposable cat litter box (in the form of either cardboard for around $2 each or hard plastic for around $3 each) with the litter already in it. The litter is sealed so it doesn’t spill or anything when you’re transporting it from the supermarket to your car to your house. All you have to do is punch out the paper that’s covering the litter and you’re good to go. It’s great because there is no scooping involved. When it gets full, you just throw it away and use another. Really excellent for lazy people. Its main downfall is the cost. Having three cats, you can only imagine how expensive this gets. Brian was perfectly happy paying the price because he loathes cleaning the cat boxes but I finally broke down and said, “We’re going to have to think of something different.”

Which brings us to our current setup: just a basic litter pan like this one and then we’ve converted a large Rubbermaid container like this one into a second litter box. Usually we buy the sifting litter pan liners and use that in conjunction with the scoopable cat litter for quick and easy clean ups but Brian bought a couple of boxes of regular cat box liners so we have to use those up. In the meantime, I’m stuck with scooping duty.

Now back to why Oscar is the rudest little shit in the world (wow, I really got sidetracked there — aren’t you glad I went back up and warned you before posting this blog). The other day when I was cleaning out the cat boxes, he just could not wait as I combed meticulously through both cat boxes with my sifter-scooper thing. As soon as I got done with the small cat box and started working on the ghetto-ass Rubbermaid one, he got in the first cat box and started pooping. I didn’t realize this at first because I was preoccupied and I didn’t really think anything of it when he got in the cat box because he had done it (gotten in there and not pooped) before. Oscar, being the newest of the three cats, is a bit territorial so in past he’s peed in both boxes right after I’ve cleaned them. This time, however, he decided to drop a load. I didn’t even realize it (because I had been so busy scooping the other box) until the putrid stench of his poop reached my nose (trust me it didn’t take long). The smell was so awful and being at such close proximity to it, I almost cried. It was almost like tear gas (not that I would know what tear gas is like, but that’s how I felt and this is my story so deal with it). Naturally, I cussed up a storm while Brian laughed as he watched me from the hallway. He could smell it from the hallway too, I’m sure, but the stench isn’t as lethal at that distance.

I was like, “What the hell? Why didn’t you warn me?” He kept laughing but I was dead serious! Had I known what Oscar was about to do, I would’ve shoo’d him before touchdown. Surely the disrespectful, impatient, little bastard could hold it for another two seconds! Ngyek!

So just now I worked extra fast at the scooping to prevent an encore performance. I was really worried when he got in the first cat box but he just peed. Cat pee is still stinky to most people but it’s nothing compared to the way Oscar’s poop smells so I was pretty relieved. I wish someday we’ll be able to teach Oscar some etiquette (none of the other cats bother me when I’m cleaning the cat box, Hobbie and Felix always patiently wait until I’m finished) but I suppose I should be content that at least we’re not finding little suprises around the house.

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US CIS

Posted on January 14, 2004 by under Web.    

What do Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS), Bureau of Citizenship and Immigration Services (BCIS) and US Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS) all have in common?  They’re the same damn thing!  It seems that US Immigration has gone the way of the illegal immigrant (moving from one address to another and changing their name as they go).

Over the last year the web address of this agency has changed from www.ins.gov to www.bcis.gov to www.uscis.gov — sounds crazy but I have proof!  The Wayback Machine at Internet Archive has a record of every single website that pops up on the web.  In fact, they even have my very first domain (chingay.com) listed.

But I digress..  What in the world is going on with the US Citizenship and Immigration Service (as they are now known)?  Why have they gone TNT (tago nang tago) on me?  I hope they stay at this last web address for a while because they sure are hard to find these days.

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