Category Archives: sleepless in Vancouver

Amazing Secrets of the Gut Bomb

Last night we had takeout Mexican food. I woke up in the middle of the night with the worst indigestion I’ve had in years. I got up once and thought I was okay but Bob started flopping around and I hissed, “Stop breathing on me!”

I had to get up again and got an Alka Seltzer and wandered around the house. I still couldn’t settle down so I thought maybe I could find a movie or something on TV.

You know what’s on TV in the middle of the night?

Infomercials. 500 channels of infomercials.

Infomercials fascinate me because they are so phony. It’s a particular flavor of phony that they all share like they’re made at the same factory from actors who are trained to act the same way. And there is so much talking with so little information provided.

The first one I saw started with a man carrying about 12 folding outdoor chairs which he couldn’t hold on to. Voiceover: Has this happened to you?

Like the only choice was to carry all those chairs at the same time.

The solution? The pocket chair. It’s a tiny little chair that you can fold up and keep in your pocket. How handy!

Except, I’m not a large person and I’m pretty sure I wouldn’t be comfortable sitting in this tiny chair. I bet kids would like it.

The other one I watched had to do with Free Money. Did you know there is tons of free money out there that THEY don’t want you to know about? The government has tons and tons of free money. You can just fill out a form and get your free money. What are you waiting for? The guy who wrote the book is interviewed by an attractive blonde woman who is practically foaming at the mouth because she’s so amazed about all this free money that’s available to anyone, even you and me. The man tells us he doesn’t make any money off the book, he just wrote it as a public service. Well, the mean old FTC doesn’t think his work is a public service.

The book is usually $30 but it was on sale for $20 last night plus s&h which many dissatisfied people on the Internet said added up to about 14 additional bucks. Plus I guess they subscribe you to a newsletter or something and keep charging you. But what about all the free money? Another funny thing is he pushes it like this is a compact book which streamlines the free money getting process. It’s not like all those telephone book sized tomes that show you where to get free money and waste your time with so much information.

I didn’t buy anything but I also didn’t get back to sleep for a couple of hours. Someone should do an infomercial about insomnia.

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The Timbers Ultimatum

My first Moon Pie. I got it at A little bit of smoke BBQ a couple weeks ago.

Do you remember when you were a little kid and school let out for xmas vacation on Friday but xmas wasn’t until Tuesday or Wednesday and you were trembling you were so beside yourself on how you would make it to xmas morning?

That’s how I’ve been the past week about our first home game as an MLS team in our freshly renovated stadium. I’m levitating right now just thinking about it.

Thursday night. 8pm.

Meanwhile, my camera has pooped out. I can’t blame it since I’ve dropped it about 50 times but also I feel bad because I spent good money on it and it’s barely 2 years old. I might have to run out and donate a kidney tomorrow so I can buy a new one. Plus save the leftover money for some other things since it is “watch money fly out of your pocket at the speed of light” month at our house. Not on purpose.

My Spring insomnia is kicking into high gear. I wake up at 4:30 or 3:30 except for last night I woke up at 2:30. I’m painfully sleepy right now so I’m going to hope for a good night tonight.

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They’re Out To Get Me

My desktop computer took a dump this morning because hey! I have nothing better to do than frick around with a computer. I don’t think it’s serious but I don’t have time to deal with it because I’m going to an appointment in 3 minutes. Before that I was rushing around trying to get my dinner in the CrockPot so I could relax this afternoon.

Check out this gadget I saw an ad for last night when I was reading a magazine at 2am while I couldn’t sleep. (Yeah, body way to go, teasing me with a couple of good nights and then betraying again. Thanks.)

The thing is called Zeo. It’s your personal sleep coach.

Quote from the ad: “Why is it important? Knowing your ZQ allows you to make the adjustments necessary to sleep your best every night and feel your best every day.”

WTF?

I’d love to rant longer but I’m running out the door.

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It’s True, I Used To Be Big On Virtuoso Guitarists

The big news is I slept through the night two nights in a row. I’m back among the living. Now if I can just get my email inbox under control and muster up some interest in Christmas shopping, life will be back on track.

I’ve had another favorite lyric sitting on my desk and I keep forgetting to write about it.

It’s from Yngwie Malmsteen. I remember this particular song because Yngwie never had a very great band but Joe Lynn Turner sung on this album. I realize that, at the most, one person reading this right now has any idea what I’m talking about but stick with me because here comes the lyric and it’s awesome. It’s from the song: Riot in the Dungeons.

Oh, I feel something coming
Looks like a riot in the dungeon
You stand and die or start your running
‘Cause there’s a riot in the dungeon.

I know. Read it out loud a few times. It’s a classic.

Coincidentally, I was reading an ancient notebook this morning looking for story ideas and I found this note:

Yngwie Malmsteen songs are like those Anne Rice talking head books. You keep waiting for something to happen.

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I Like the Night

Well, after one hour the night before, four hours last night was positively refreshing.

Just kidding. It’s going to be awesome productive at the office today.

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If You See the Sleep Fairy, Send Her/Him My Way

Early morning view of the Kootenai River from my hotel room.

I survived my super busy week. The business trip went fantastic.

I got home in time for a late dinner on Tuesday night and my dear cousin was in town for the Tribal Archives, Libraries and Museums Conference so I got to visit with her.

After work on Wednesday my cousin and I drove across town to meet with a 96-year old Karuk elder who grew up speaking Karuk. He didn’t learn to speak English until he started school. We interviewed him for a tribal program. He was a complete charmer. He had tons of great stories about his life like how he grew up and different jobs he’s had and several times he’d start a story and seem to gloss over the most interesting part. One of the interview questions was whether he’d ever had to translate between English and Karuk.

“Oh, just once,” he said. “It was a homicide investigation.”

I’m hoping to set something up so I can meet with him on a regular basis and get his stories and more of his knowledge of the language. We’ll see how it all works out.

Just turned 96. He showed us a photo of the gate he put up this summer at his property in Etna, CA

Thursday I left work a little bit early. The commute home was a breeze and I had one errand which went quickly and I was at home by 4:30pm. “I’m one good nights sleep away from world domination!” I thought as I lounged on the couch catching up on my shows between loads of laundry.

Of course I woke up at 3am. At 4:30am I turned on the light and read for awhile. By 6am I was sleepy again and I went back to sleep until 8:30am. Better than a sharp stick in the eye but I felt fuzzy headed all day.

Today I’ve been cooking and catching up on stuff around the house. That was one thing about this week. For about 5 days straight I barely ate anything that didn’t come from a restaurant. My favorite food is stuff I make myself. It was nice to eat in my own kitchen for a change.

I am now one good nights sleep away from world domination.

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The Best Sandwich

In the middle of the day Bob called from the other room, “Honey, come here. You have to see this.”

It was this sandwich.

I thought I should share the moment.

Like every weekend, I didn’t accomplish as much as I wanted. I think next weekend my goal is going to be one thing. Like, empty the dishwasher. Then I can marvel about all the things I do that I didn’t have on my list.

Last night I woke up at 1am and couldn’t fall back asleep. Bob was downstairs watching movies and heard me bumping around and came upstairs. Then I got the giggles and it took another couple hours before I fell back asleep. But I was glad that we were grown-ups and there was no one yelling at us from the other room to knock it off and go to sleep.

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Sleepless in Vancouver

Remember when I was learning Illustrator? From this post it looks like it was in 2006. I haven’t improved a bit.

That’s one of the things on my list every weekend, to do a few tutorials and refresh my skills. I never get to it. An experienced Illustrator person could probably have made the above in 3 seconds. It took me about 15 minutes. Not bad.

I didn’t sleep well Sunday or Monday night. Last night my eyes were drooping by 7pm but I bravely kept the light on until 9pm and then passed out the second my head hit the pillow. I still feel sorta wonky.

On Monday one of my headlights went out. My car is an 01 with 85K miles on it and it feels like all the pieces are breaking off. I think the windshield washer fluid thingy is leaking since I’ve never added washer fluid since owning the car and this is the third time the light has come on in three months. I don’t want to spend another day + sitting around with my car in the shop and paying a couple hundred bucks for something stupid.

But I do want to take care of the headlight. I only drive to and from the park and ride which equals about 15 minutes a day but it’s all in the dark

I’m dreading going back to Toyota because I complained about my last service. And my service contact called me about my complaint and he was very nice and apologetic. He also told me that he had zero recollection of my service problem (the one where I dropped off a drive-able car on Tuesday morning and never heard a peep about when it would be done and both me and my husband called them at least twice a day and then they called us Friday at 4pm and told us we could come get it) and they didn’t like to have unhappy customers. Is that supposed to make me feel better?

Lie. Tell me it was miscommunication about the part and they thought they had it but they didn’t and then their phones went out when the space ship landed and they couldn’t call me. And their memories were wiped so they didn’t remember later. I don’t want to go in there and have them be all phony nice about replacing a headlight.

I am not much of a poetry person but I love this poem by Sherman Alexie: Unkissed.

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Quick Update

Downtown Portland

View from the office window

Busy week. Parts of it extremely not fun.

Insomnia! I haven’t had sleeping issues since Clarion West last summer. Last night was night 4. woo!

Office is finally decorated. Photos to come.

Mom and Dad in town this weekend. Won’t be computing much.

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There’s A Party in My Paella

I’ve never made paella before so my strategy was to read as many recipes as I could find and then distill them into the easiest possible procedure. I ended up printing out 4 recipes that looked promising.

I worked on my story all day Sunday and the last thing I wanted to do at the end of the day was cook something more complicated than frozen pizza but I had all the ingredients and I was hungry so I went for it. None of the recipes was easy and they all seemed to demand that I get a lot of pans dirty and do a lot of processes and I was having none of that. Try to spot my short cuts.

I warmed up my new pan and, in this order, I threw in: chopped onion and red bell pepper, cubed chicken breasts, chopped spicy Italian sausage (no chorizo and I didn’t want to go to another store) and then a half bag of Trader Joe’s frozen mixed seafood surprise which what they get at the end of a fishing expedition when they clean out the bottom of the boat.

I realized I should have saved the vegetables for later but never fear. When done, I scraped all this stuff into a bowl and set aside in the warm oven and then made the sofrito which is onions, garlic, tomatoes and in my case, the last 3 spoonfuls of salsa in the container because it needed to be finished up. Once that smelled delicious I added my rice and mixed everything together and then added my saffron infused Swanson’s chicken broth. I had bought smoked Spanish paprika specifically because I thought I needed it for paella and none of my recipes called for it so I added 1 teaspoon.

I waited until the cooked rice started pushing up in the middle of the pan and then spread the meat mixture plus some peas and shelled edamame because why not? over the pan. Then I moved the pan around on the burners to make sure it was getting thoroughly heated and after a half hour I turned the heat down and covered with foil and let it sit for a bit.

Keep in mind that I had been writing since I woke up so in addition to cooking I was running back and forth folding laundry and scrubbing the bathroom sink and generally enjoying the life of a woman who has it all (except for children, pets and a ski chalet in the Austrian alps).

The end result: delicious! My recipe needs work including being less timid with the saffron and paprika and I think I have some hot paprika somewhere and if I can find it, I’ll throw some of that in next time, too.

Meanwhile, I was so tired on Sunday night I read 2 pages of my book and then turned out the light and then tossed and turned ALL NIGHT LONG. It was clinically awful. I thought it was because Bob wasn’t home but three people in my office reported terrible sleep the same night so now I think the aliens are wearing us down before they start their invasion.

Last night I saw Marjane Satrapi at Arts and Lectures and she was fabulous. I very highly recommend Persepolis 1 and 2. But that means that I left the house at 6:30a and didn’t get home until 9:30p which is close to the world’s longest day.

Now it’s Tuesday and I’m feeling tired and frazzled but apparently still capable of writing a long rambling blogpost. Is this a marketable skill?

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