Tuesday, April 14, 2009

The trials of living in a small town...

Due to economics and happenstance I live in the middle of freakin' nowhere. Ok, I live on a (beautiful) lake and can enjoy that whenever I please, but there are some negatives to living here.

*Nothing to do in the winter. N-O-T-H-I-N-G. Water and cold weather don't mix. Add in a rapidly receding waterline and you have a not-so-fun combo.

*Everyone wants to know your damn business. I'm a very private person and don't care too much for the neighbors discussing my life story and thus making judgments. It's not like I'm trying to be a snob, but when it's obvious you're prying for information and I know you're going to turn around and extrapolate some idiotic story (and by extension judgment) because you have nothing better to talk about, I'm going to be hesitant to give you information. To be fair, I'm pretty reserved about certain parts of my life with even my closest friends. It's not like I'm trying to hide anything, though, haha.

*So-slow-I-feel-like-I'm-backing-up drivers. Most of that is just a conflict of ideals. The speed limit to me is more often than not just a mere suggestion :P I tend to drive 55-65mph on straight roads and 70-80 on interstates. I'm not lying. Tonight I was on my way into town and got behind a Hart Co. Sheriff and I swear his top speed was no more than 28mph in a 55. It seems he was looking for a specific street, which incidentally gives me such confidence in the Hart County Sheriff's Department to come to my or my family's help in a timely manner should we need it. NOT!

#*#*# Side note, I'm watching 18 Kids and Counting as I'm writing this. The oldest of the 18 is 20 (TWENTY!?!?!) and is just announcing that after 4 (FOUR?!?!?!?!) months of marriage he and his wife are pregnant. GOOD LORD!!!!!!!! I'm 23 and I can't even imagine having a kid right now, much less three years ago. I'm thinking of all the things I've learned and probably still have yet to learn. Sheisse!.

*Lack of restaurants. I'm pretty eclectic in my food tastes, but I like a lot of Asian cuisine, Thai, Japanese, Korean, Indian, etc. I hate fast food and Subway gets old. So I live in the wrong town, haha. All my favorites are at least an hour away. Major bummer. Thankfully I have some good friends in said hour-away-town that make it easy to enjoy better food when visiting said friends.

* Critters in the house and never-ending freakin yardwork. Maybe that makes me lazy but the last thing I want to do after a long day is spend seemingly inordinate amounts of time doing menial tasks in the yard. Yes, I know it just has to be done sometimes, but my Dad ENJOYS that crap, and as such goes and goes and finds things to do for other people. Fine for him, but he gets mad when we don't want to do it, yet he can't seem to understand why we don't want to do it. Maybe that makes me lazy, I don't know. Maybe some part of me will just always remember my dad not always being the best communicator (but he's very smart) and getting easily frustrated. I can vividly remember several times when I was younger (this isn't supposed to be a rag on what a terrible person my dad is, because he's not) my dad getting so frustrated to the point where he couldn't even think straight simply because I couldn't (or wouldn't, that was fifteen years ago, so who knows) throw a ball or cut the grass just right (yes it's back to that). I'm not a big believer in psychology/childhood trauma (not that that was traumatic persay, but maybe there is something to not always being able to let go of bad memories that happened. I must be willing to admit that I have a long memory of both good and bad events and I don't easily forget somebody who's done me wrong or made me very angry (though that's not easy to do) just easily as I don't forget a kindness. It's all about give and take. So having said all that my next domicile will more than likely be an apartment or townhouse where there isn't a yard until I warm to the idea of never-ending yardwork!

In hindsight if I had to do it over again I more than likely wouuld not choose to live here again. I did it to save money, but it cost me a lot of aggrivation and stress. Yes, some of it I put upon myself because I didn't want to do what I had agreed to (though I didn't really realize what all that entailed, now I do), but ultimately I probably should have known better.

*I'm so far away from everybody and everything. Simple things like going to the grocery store require at least an hour. If I need clothes, well, forget it, that's at least two to three hours because there's only one store in town and it doesn't have much of anything I need.

So enough with the negatives. How about a few positives.

* It's deathly quiet when I need peace and quiet, I've certainly got it.

* The people, though nosy, are friendly.

* When every farmer in the county isn't shovelling chicken crap by the ton everywhere it's a gorgeous landscape.

* The drivers aren't nearly as bad as Baldwin/Putnam counties'!

Monday, April 13, 2009

Rants and Revelations

I was browsing the news, and I'm still not really sure how I came up with this one, but I did.

Apparently on Britain's Got Talent (the UK answer to American Idol) a 47-year-old blew everyone out of the water. Great you say, why the fuss? Well, the lady had a very tongue-in-cheek sense of humor and frankly appeared to be a joke. All the jokes, however, were on the audience as soon as the woman opened her mouth and proved she could, indeed, sing. Yeah, she missed one or two low notes, but yeesh, she gets an A for effort in my book!

While I was watching the clip I was both incredibly delighted that the woman was basically giving the middle finger to a lot of people, I was mad that her appearance and age set her up as a joke. It's unfortunate that Hung Po (or whatever the hell his name is) and every other idiot who wants 15 seconds of fame for being horrible have to ruin it for people like this lady. I'll be the first to acknowledge that I certainly don't know her story and circumstances, etc, but what makes me mad is that these shows have made a joke out of real people and even worse, people making a joke out of themselves.

The real shame in all this is the Britney's, Madonna's, Beyonce's, Rihanna's, other cutie pies and Boybands have made it very difficult for people like this lady, who can truly sing, but aren't necessarily easy on the eyes to be successful in pop music. No, she wasn't a toad, but she certainly wouldn't win a beauty contest. But neither would Patsy Cline, Kate Smith, Billie Holliday, and many other woman who weren't knock-outs but were talented. It's astonishing to think how many people who are considered legends wouldn't even get a chance in today's MTV and Entertainment Tonight society. It just makes me angry!

So, Susan Boyle, I tip my hat to you. Will she make it, probably not, but maybe (hah) it could be a stepping stone.

A GOOD! Weekend.

As it was Easter weekend, I had Good Friday off! Woohoo! I was quite happy because work has become rather mind-numbing. I mean really, how many color change observations and volumetric titrations can one do before the brain starts to ooze out of your ear! Thankfully, I had some side projects that I had been working on that had kept most, if not all, of my attention the last two weeks. On the flipside, however, those projects resulted in five post-eight-pm nights in a week and a half. Needless to say, that, coupled with all the other stuff that had been going on in the past three weeks meant I wanted to run screaming from the building and pull out what's left of my hair. *Sidenote, I'm not bald. I'm just taller than most of my hair.*

Basically what I wanted was to just hang out with a few of my friends and enjoy a nice bottle (or two) of wine. I had already arrange most of this ahead of time given that my ability to do so is depdendent on whether or not my friends are in town, so Friday night I braved the incliment ugly weather (which never really came near me) and schlepped my way to Athens (woohoo!). It was well worth it.

At Amigo's place I had left a bottle of pinot noir from a previous weekend and I nicely polished that one off before we headed to Casa Mia (one of my favorite restaurants in Athens) in the rain I might add.

I like either going to restaurants and enjoying a long meal with friends or starting a friends' places. I don't really (and never have) care for going to loud crouded bars where all you do is stand THIS CLOSE to 65 of your closest intoxicated friends and scream at each other while loud, obnoxious music that's not really made for dancing blares in your eyes. Always been a rather bizare custom to me. Personally if I'm going to go out somewhere I want to dance. I know I'm not in the majority, and sometimes I'll go because that's the fair thing to do, but the bar scene just turns me off.

So, once at Casa Mia we settled in for a nice long chatty dinner which consisted of some incredibly good tapas, and a nice bottle (yes another) of pinot noir. Pinot noir being my wine du jour. We probably stayed longer than the restaurant would have liked, but I wasn't too concerned considering the second bottle was pretty much gone by 2315 and we had racked up a nice cheque.

Friday, April 3, 2009

A Little Tennis Nostalgia

While cleaning up my room (yes Mom I DO clean my room from time to time) I came across some tennis matches I had recorded about five years ago. Among them were matches of one of my all-time favorite players, Lindsay Davenport. Davenport has for all intensive purposes retired (she had a kid in 2007 and is pregnant with her second), and played some last year. Anyway, the matches I came across were from 2003-2005 when she was playing some ridiculous tennis, and watching them reminded me of why I love tennis.

Davenport's backhand to me is a thing of beauty, and frankly makes me want to cry (Yes I am that pathetic). She's by far not the most athletic player but her groundstrokes are magnificent. Watching Lindsay Davenport hit a backhand makes me a very happy camper. It's the simple things, no? Many players are more athletic, but as a result rely more on their athleticism than their technique like the Williams Sisters, Kim Clijsters, and to a lessor degree Rafa Nadal. Of the listed players there I think the Williams sisters are the worst offenders. By offenders I don't mean their ability to play, and I can't knock them too much because they've won a ridiculous amount of tournaments. On the flipside you have Roger Federer who relies almost entirely on his technique and acts like a despondent child when it's not good enough to win matches. It's all about balance!

So, having prattled on about that, my thoughts turned to some of my favorite shots and attributes of some of my favorite players:

Lindsay Davenport -- backhand

Steffi Graf -- basically her whole entire game barring her topspin backhand. Her forehand was ridiculous in pace and production, but even better was her footwork which was beautiful!

Pete Sampras -- serve

Serena Williams -- serve, and only her serve, her groundstrokes make my arm hurt her technique is so off.

Jennifer Capriati -- forehand and gumption. She was so good at tracking down balls wide to her forehand that it seemed like her arm extended itself by a foot when she needed to.

Justine Henin -- backhand and nerve.

Rafa Nadal -- intensity and spirit. I'm not really a huge fan of his stroke production, though it's technically sound.

Stefan Edberg -- backhand and volleys. He moved so gracefully as well.

I was fortunate to be able to play some tennis this past weekend, though my play was splotchy at best. What more can I expect though when I've changed racquets and haven't played in four months. I still had fun. I need to get in better shape, haha, though honestly I think some of that was pollen. You could see it puffing up when the ball hit the ground.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Spring is in the air...and so is the pollen!

April is here. Incidentally, a particular idiot has succeeded in finding the best April Fool's joke that isn't funny...one that's not a joke and is basically a total clusterf*ck! Thanks to his bozocity (yes I just made up a word there, root is bozo) everybody's on edge. Thanks a lot BOZO.

On a MUCH more pleasant note. Spring is coming. The azalea's are blooming and everything's becoming green again. Not that fake winter green that the plants fool you with but a real spring green! The only downside is that with spring comes pollen. Around here it's so thick you can taste it. Well Sheisse! So for the better part of the next two months I and many others will be walking around with a seemingly interminable post-nasal drip and a raspy voice. Georgia and much of the South for that matters gets and ungodly amount of pollen in April and May. Deep South Georgia gets it even earlier (yet another reason I don't live there). When I was younger I never was bothered by pollen. That changed around 18. It's not debilitating but there are always one or two days where I just feel like I've been flattened by a semi-truck. A quarter of the cove also looks likes it's been carpeted. Yeah, think 1970's gold shag and you're not that far off.

To go along with all that pollen you have carpenter bees that are so big they sound like low-flying airplanes when they flyover your head!