Tuesday, April 28, 2009
Okay, so now the EU (European Union) is warning people not to go to the U.S. unless it's necessary. According to CNN, the EU recommends that all leisure travel to the U.S. be postponed until a later date. And, people at Narita Airport (the international airport in Japan) are being screened with heat detecting cameras before being allowed to enter Japan. Apparently, they won't let people into the country if they have a fever.
So, what does all this mean for me and my family? Jude already has a slight head cold right now. He has a snotty nose but nothing else- no fever, no chest congestion, no body aches, no flu like symptoms, just a head cold.
Since we've already bought the tickets and paid for everything, I really don't want to postpone the trip. After all, taking vacation time is very difficult. So, I've got a plan. I will take huge bottles of hand sanitizer and use it often. I will wipe down every touchable surface on the airplane. I will use hand sanitizing wet wipes and wipe down the seat belt, tray table, arm rests and anything else we might touch while on the plane. Once we are in California, I will wipe down the rental car the same way. We will wash our hands, wear masks, and stay away from Mexicans, which is basically impossible to do in California and Texas! We will be staying at friends houses along the way, so that should help, too. We will also swim as much as possible. A little dose of chlorine will help to kill any residual cooties we pick up along the way. (Thankfully, you can find well maintained, nice pools at any local YMCA or YWCA!)
Another option is skinny dipping in rubbing alcohol, wearing chemical gear, and bending over and kissing our asses good-bye!
Sunday, April 26, 2009
Saturday, April 25, 2009
So, yesterday I was packing for our trip to America. I was looking for sunblock, shampoo, and soap in the bathroom cabinets. I jumped on top of the toilet in my restroom, opened up the cabinet, and found something weird. I found an opened bottle of anesthetic. I studied the small bottle wondering whose it could be and why it would be in my bathroom cabinet. Its label said that is was an inhalation anesthetic. It was prescription strength but there was no prescription label on it. I was perplexed.
Immediately my crazy, out of control mind started thinking. I came up with two possible scenarios: (1) Husband is a drug addict, and I just found his stash, or (2) Husband is a serial killer and uses the drug to relieve the pain of his victims before he kills them. Wow! I pondered both ideas in my mind looking for other clues that might point me to the correct conclusion. Could my sweet, loving Husband secretly be a drug addict, I asked myself? I thought about it over and over in my mind. After a minute or two, I realized my Husband could never be a drug addict. After all, he doesn't even like to take Pepto when he has an upset stomach, and he never takes Gas-X, even when I beg him to. So, the only logical conclusion was this: I live with a serial killer.
I went over the idea in my head. I started to look back and reflect on Husband's recent behavior. He didn't seem like a serial killer. He's not aggressive, he's not controlling, he's not white, he's not even that charming. He does have a weird family, but that's all I could come up with. Then, in my sick, grotesque mind I thought, Cool, I'm doing a serial killer, how awesome is that! I was distraught and disgusted that the idea of having sex with a possible serial killer could be considered cool in my sick, demented mind. I need help, I thought to myself. Then, I started to focus on my new, possible reality. Shit, what do I do if Husband is a real serial killer? I decided to ask Husband about the prescription drug and see what his explanation would be once I brought it up. His response would give me the clues I needed to decide for myself.
So, I waited until he came home from work. After he walked in and played with Jude for a few minutes, I confronted him with what I had found. His response was boring and made sense. Apparently, the medication was needed to calibrate some medical equipment at work. Since the medication is considered a narcotic, having it on his desk or in his tool box at home was not a good idea. He was worried Jude might play with his work tools and stumble across the drug. So, he put it in our bathroom cabinet on the highest shelf to keep Jude safe. I know, it's a perfectly good excuse and a very boring one. Thus, it must be true.
So, Husband is not a serial killer, at least not yet.
Thursday, April 23, 2009
Wednesday, April 22, 2009
So, last night was weird. I had a meeting at school at 4 PM to discuss my lessons and lesson plans. So, Husband had to pick up Jude from school and make dinner. When I walked into my apartment at 6 PM, the aroma of Mexican food smacked me in the face. Husband had prepared tacos with all the necessary toppings: chopped lettuce, tomato, shredded cheese, and guacamole. I was quite pleased with his work. We gobbled up our dinner and chatted at the dinner table as we do almost every night. (I have one rule in my house: everyone must eat dinner together at the dinner table. My family is required to sit, eat and chat like normal, civilized people. If it were up to them, they'd eat in front of the TV, or Jude would run around eating, leaving a food trail everywhere.) So, I told Husband about my day and about my meeting. At that moment, our roles seemed reverse. Usually it's the other way around. I'm used to being the caregiver, chef, table setter, and questioner. But last night, Husband filled those roles. It was weird, but nice.
I'm glad that I am now contributing financially to this family. I'm glad I have a skill needed and wanted by the Japanese people. I'm excited to be a REAL educator.
Tuesday, April 21, 2009
Here's a list of places and people we plan to visit:
Mr. and Mrs. Crash and new baby Crash (Sacramento, CA)
San Francisco, CA- We plan to do some general site seeing here.
Monterey Bay Aquarium, Monterey, CA
La Brea Tar Pits, Los Angeles, CA
Bobo the Wonder Dog and Czeck Girl (Los Angeles, CA) (And yes, the dog is STILL alive!)
Sea World, San Diego, CA
San Diego Zoo, San Diego, CA (duh!)
Pima Air and Space Museum, Tucson, AZ
Carlsbad Caverns National Park, Carlsbad, NM
Slightly Smaller D AKA Big D, Hot Single Momma, Running Freak, Texas Hot Momma, and K the Chemist, Mr. & Mrs. Ironman with new baby Ironkid (Wichita Falls, TX)
BJ, Princess, Mr. & Mrs. B., and all my other Houston Peeps (Houston, TX)
YaYa, PoPo and Pilah AKA Felix the other Wonder Dog (Rockport, TX)
And, of course we plan to visit Husband's family and friends, but I typically don't write about them in the blog. Husband prefers I don't blog about his family and friends. Whatever!
(If you click on the highlighted/underlined names, it will take you to a blog post about that person. Enjoy!)
Monday, April 20, 2009
Weenie: "So, you're wearing a nasty, old, tank top."
Husband: "No, it's not a tank top- it's a wifebeater!"
Husband: "So, you better watch out!"
After Husband told me this, I busted out laughing hysterically in his face. What a threat--this coming from a man who moisturizes every night!
(By the way, Husband has never beaten me--at least, not yet! However, he has tried to kill me 403 times. His last attempt on my life was last Friday, when he ran a red light with me in the car.)
Friday, April 17, 2009
Okay, before you write me an ugly comment or plot my death, please continue reading! Then, you can write me whatever you like!
So, this past Sunday was Easter. Like the good, little, Catholics we are, we went to church. As we walked into our local Catholic church, the place was packed, and it reeked of incense. I could see the smoke rising out of a golden incense holder, similar to the one pictured above. I thought nothing of it. However, as mass progressed, the smell got stronger and stronger, as did the thickness of the smoke in the air.
As you know, I have asthma and allergies. I am very sensitive to certain triggers-one being smoke. So, I coughed, gagged and tried not to make a scene as I sat next to Husband in the pew. I occasionally took a deep breath, but that only made it worse. The more I breathed in, the more the smoke filled my bunk, ass, asthmatic lungs. I didn't start to wheeze, but I did have a slight shortness or tightness in my chest. In my mind I thought, shit, Jesus is trying to kill me. I thought about the week's events, trying to think about what I had done to cause the Lord to try to kill me on Easter freaking Sunday, of all days! Nothing came to mind. Shit, I'm going to die of a stupid, fucking asthma attack right here in church in front of God and everyone, I thought. After about 30 minutes of smelling the fragrant, smoke, filled air, thankfully someone opened the windows. Praise Jesus in all his glory, I'm not going to die today after all, I thought as I watched a woman carefully open every window in the church. The fresh, cool air smelled sweet and tasted clean. It was pure and somewhat unpolluted- keep in mind, I live in Tokyo, Japan, where the air is usually pretty crappy. I took a few deep breaths and was relieved. As I breathed in the clean, fresh air, my lungs opened up and the tightness let go. I was no longer trying to breathe through swollen bronchial tubes. Aaaah! Happiness!
So, in the modern day in which we live, why is it still necessary to burn incense in church? With people having allergies and asthma, like myself, why does the Catholic church still feel the need to burn things indoors? I know it's a tradition and blah, blah, blah. I know it has been done for hundreds of years and blah, blah, blah. Who gives a shit? Seriously, if there were no incense on Easter Sunday, I doubt anyone would have even noticed! So, why does the Catholic church feel the need to keep this silly custom alive? By doing so, they could possibly be risking the lives of those with breathing problems like myself!
Thursday, April 16, 2009
So, earlier this week I was bitching and moaning about it being hot. We don't have AC right now, and we can't control it. The AC comes on in the building when the Climate Control Engineer thinks we deserve it. So, I've been sweating for the last week or so. I finally got fed up with the heat and decided to do something about it. I decided to get a hair cut. I haven't had a haircut since the last time I told you about it. I think that was back in September.
So, I made an appointment to get my hair cut for today. So, I walked into the salon, sat down in the chair and discussed how I wanted my hair cut. Luckily, my Japanese is getting better, and the hair cut lady spoke a little English. So, there she was cutting my hair and doing a very meticulous job at it. What normally takes 15 minutes in America, takes 30 minutes in Japan! She finished cutting my hair and then began to blow dry it. She was almost done when the fire alarm went off. It went off for a minute or two, and she simply ignored it. She said it goes off all the time and to ignore it. She told me not to worry about it. There were no visible signs of fire and you couldn't smell smoke or anything. Then, the manager screamed, "Get out!" I understood and walked my happy ass out through the emergency exit. My hair wasn't completely dry. I stood outside for about 15 minutes, and then I decided to pay her and leave. My hair had dried from the wind. I'm not sure if she was done, but I didn't want to sit around outside waiting for them to put the fire out (if there even was a fire). I mean, I think she was done. After all, she let me pay her. She said my hair was cute and waved good-bye.
My hair looks good to me, but then again, I can't see the back. So, who knows.
This could only happen to me.
I'm just thankful I wasn't getting my hair colored! There were several ladies with their heads wrapped in aluminum foil. I hope they got the color out in time or their hair will be fried!
Just another day in Weenie's World!
I need to be immersed in the sights and sounds of Texas. I need to hear the crickets and the cicadas whispering in my ear. I need to see Mocking Birds, Blue Jays and Cardinals flying over head. I need to see Holstein and Jersey cows in the horizon. I need to smell fresh cut grass and honey suckle. I need to see cowboys in tight Wrangler jeans, Justin Ropers, giant belt buckles and straw cowboy hats. I need that image. It's as plain as day in my mind. I can see all of it. But, I'm tired of having to conjure up the image in my head. I want it to be real and tangible. I want to smack that cowboy on his ass, and smell the cows' farts, and taste the honeysuckle, and roll down the hill covered in Bluebonnets, and dodge the Mocking Bird as it attacks me because I walked too close to its nest. I want it to be real. I'm tired of dreaming about it.
Oh, only 22 days. Then this will all be real again. I can't wait!
(So, if you live in Texas and see a crazy, midget, Mexican rolling around in the grass, or smelling a cow's ass, or tasting honeysuckle, or slapping a cowboy's ass, don't worry--it's just me, basking in everything Texas.)
So, Jude was chewing something and smiling wide. He looked guilty. This was our conversation:
Weenie: "What are you eating?"
Jude: "Jelly beans!"
Weenie: "Why are you awake at 6 AM eating jelly beans?"
Jude: "Because they taste good."
Apparently, Jude was eating some jelly beans his Auntie had sent him in the mail for Easter. All I could do was smile and think good answer.
Wednesday, April 15, 2009
Anywho, the story is too good to end. As weird as this sounds, I don't want to be without it. So, I'm only allowing myself a few pages a night. I know, I'm a retard, but I just can't help that I've fallen in love with these characters and with their story. I've been on the look out for my next book, but nothing has caught my eye. I hope another great vampire story finds me soon!
This weekend my running buddies and I decided to go to Showa Park on bikes to check out the cherry blossoms. This is us on the way to the park. As you can see, the cherry blossoms were blowing in the wind. It was like it was snowing cherry blossom petals.
Tuesday, April 14, 2009
According to countless articles on the web, Susan Boyle is an unemployed, single woman, who has never been kissed, and who lives alone with her cat. She seems quirky, average and someone you would pass on the street without looking at twice. However, she has been blessed with an amazing gift. She can sing! She has more talent in her pinkie toe than Britney Spears does in her entire body! Ms. Boyle has true, unbridled talent. Hearing her sing, via the web, made me happy. It made me happy to see someone who deserves more in life actually getting more. The TV show has given her an opportunity of a lifetime, an opportunity she deserves. She proves that it is possible to live your dreams. Bravo, Ms. Boyle! Bravo!
Here's a link to the article and video of her performance:
Friday, April 10, 2009
Thursday, April 9, 2009
Yesterday one of my older students, Yuko-san, was having trouble speaking English. It was so bizarre. Yuko-san is a retired English teacher who can normally speak perfect English. (She's 73 years old, by the way.) She has a thick accent, but her grammar and word usage is usually perfect. In fact, most of the time she uses vocabulary words I haven't heard since the last time I read a college text book. She is an incredibly gifted woman. However, yesterday something was different about her.
Yesterday she couldn't find the correct words in her lexicon to use when speaking. She kept saying things wrong and getting all mixed up. It was so weird, almost like a bad dream. I was so confused by her inability to communicate in English. Last week she was fine, and this week it was like talking to a beginning English student. She seemed to comprehend what I was saying, but she couldn't communicate back in her normal perfect English. She apologized many times by saying, "My English no good today."
Today when I was teaching several ladies from the same class, I mentioned to them that Yuko-san's English was really bad yesterday. They said they noticed that she wasn't using her typical complex sentences and vocabulary. They believe she is just getting old. However, I think something happened to her- something bad. It almost reminds me of when my grandfather had a stroke. After my grandfather's stroke, he could no longer speak English. It was weird. It was like English just fell out of his brain. Spanish was his first language, and he was able to speak that fine. But the English he knew had simply disappeared after the stroke. It kind of seemed the same way yesterday for Yuko-san. She had no outer signs that anything was wrong. She seemed fine except for a weird comment she made at the end of class.
At the beginning of class, I gave the students cookies and candies for Easter. I told them briefly the meaning behind Easter and its significance for Christians. All the students ate their cookies and candies except for Yuko-san. I asked her if she liked the cookie, and she said yes. I asked her if it was okay, because she hadn't eaten it yet. She replied back by saying she was going to take it to her husband. The only problem with that statement is her husband is dead. He died last year, and she lives alone. It was a weird conversation, and I was confused by it. I wasn't sure what to say back. I just stood there with a creased forehead perplexed. I was trying to wrap my brain around what she had just said. She was going to take a cookie to her dead husband? What?
I didn't realize how weird yesterday was until I told Husband about it last night at dinner. As I was retelling the day's events, I started to wonder if maybe Yuko-san had had a stroke or is starting to show signs of Alzheimer's. It's just so weird.
I don't know what to do or what to say to her. I'm not sure if there is anything I can do. I'm worried that she is losing her cognitive ability, and it's going fast. One day she can speak perfect English, and the next day she is a bumbling idiot not making any sense. It's just so weird.
Wednesday, April 8, 2009
Tuesday, April 7, 2009
Okay, as you know we are going to the states at the end of April for a whirlwind vacation. One of our potential stops is Sea World San Diego. I don't want to go because I feel the animals are not properly cared for. And I believe the animals are forced to perform for stupid humans. I have read countless articles about dolphins going blind because of the added chlorine in the petting tanks. I have also read how the dolphins' sonar system doesn't work properly in the glass and concrete tanks. Some dolphins literally go crazy and run into the sides of the tanks as a result. I've read countless articles about the horrors at Sea World and other aquariums through out the world. I've never been to Sea World and never wanted to go-that is, until Jude said he wanted to see a killer whale.
As a mother, I will give my kid anything he wants, within reason of course- especially if it will help him learn. So, here's my dilemma: should I take the kid to Sea World San Diego knowing all the horrible things I know about the place, or should I just ignore his request?
Deep inside of me, I know each animal should be left in its natural state, the way god intended. But at the same time, I love to see animals up close, especially at local zoos. And, we have an aquarium with an allergy eater and a guppy we rescued from a fair last year. So, am I just as bad as Sea World? Am I guilty of the same things I am accusing Sea World of?
Even though I disagree with the deplorable conditions at Sea World, I know that visiting such a place could spark an interest in my son. He is already walking around the apartment with little plastic dolphins and whales. He can already name the dolphins: Bottlenose dolphin, Spotted dolphin, Spinner dolphin, Common dolphin, Boto River dolphin, and Baiji River dolphin. He loves them and surrounds himself with them, even when he sleeps. To see these animals up close and in person, and to even possibly touch a dolphin, could be a life changing experience for him. Who knows, he could be the next Jacques Cousteau or Steve Erwin. Wait, I don't think I want my son wrestling with crocodiles, but you get the idea.
Each life experience shapes who we are and who we will become. I want to give my son every possible chance to experience new and exciting things. It just sucks that in doing so, I will be going against my own beliefs.
So, what do you think? Should we take the kiddo to Sea World San Diego?
Monday, April 6, 2009
I know I'm a Texan and always will be, but I must admit I'm a little scared to go back to the States. With the recent high profile shootings and kidnappings in the U.S., it makes me really appreciate living in Japan. And, it makes me a little leery of going back to the states for a visit. Now I live in a place where you don't have to watch your back at midnight while walking down a dark street. You don't HAVE to lock your doors. You don't have to be scared. You can let your kids play outside unsupervised. You can let them walk to the park alone. You can even let them take the train into Tokyo all by themselves. When Jude and I go out, I don't have to keep him close by. I can let him wander off and explore the world around him. I know that's not possible in the states...and that makes me sad.
I know I'm from the best state in the best country in the world, but lately the news doesn't reflect that. The world sees a bunch of gun toting crazies going on shooting rampages. This isn't my America. This isn't the one I'm proud to be from. This isn't the one I describe to my students.
I want my America back!
Saturday, April 4, 2009
Today Jude and I named some newly discovered dinosaurs. They are:
Holycrapasauras- pronounced holy-crap-a-saur-as.
Pooperonisauras- pronounced poo-peroni-saur-as.
Boogerceratops- pronounced booger-cer-a-tops
Dookiesauras- pronounced dookie-saur-as.
Just another day in Weenie's World!
Friday, April 3, 2009
It worked out great until dinner time at our favorite sushi restaurant. Jude was so completely pooped that he was eating fried squid with half closed eyes. One minute he was comparing Ironman to Spider-man, and the next he was passed out on my lap as I ate sushi, trying not to spill rice or raw fish in his ear.
Since he was out like a light and snoring, I thought I would take advantage. You see, our favorite sushi joint is located inside the local mall. Husband parked himself on the comfy couch outside the GAP, holding our sleeping monkey, and I took a peek inside the store. To my surprise, the store was empty. It was weird, almost eerie to be alone in the GAP. Usually the place is streaming with skinny Japanese ladies, who barely weigh 85 pounds. Usually the ladies are buzzing around like little, skinny mosquitoes. But, tonight nada-no one was in the store--just me and about 10 sales associates. I guess it's a sign of the times. Luckily, I found a pair of size 2 jeans that fit perfectly, and they were on sale. YAHOO! (Since most Japanese ladies are sickly thin, a size 2 is basically for the fat chicks. And, well, in Japan, I'm a fat chick!) So, I bought the jeans and rescued Husband from the couch.
We got in the car and drove home with our sleeping kiddo in the back seat. All was perfect. Then, we arrived home. As Husband scooped the monkey out of his car seat, the monkey perked up. It was like someone yelled, "Hey, there's Spider-man." The monkey was awake, wide eyed and bushy tailed. We came inside, put jammies on, and encouraged him to go to bed. It didn't work. Now Husband is reading countless books to a well rested, inquisitive, little monkey. The monkey shows no sign of sleepiness or fatigue. Damn it! Our plan has been foiled. Shit, shit, shit! Husband mentioned something about giving the monkey a little Gin or Rum to help with the situation. As good as that sounds, I would hate to encourage alcoholism in a child that is sure to have inherited the alcoholic gene from my side of the family. As you may recall, I come from a long line of great alcoholics! Great ones, I tell you! So, I don't want to be responsible for turning my monkey into an alcoholic at age 4. Instead, I'll wait and let him do it on his own, hopefully when he goes off to college.
(Wait, that sounds bad. I don't EVER want my son to become an alcoholic! I don't wish that on him. But, I'm a realist. I know what he comes from, and I know what I was, and I know what I could have been- another GREAT alcoholic! If I had kept practicing, I could have been right up there with the local wino sleeping under the Mandell Bridge on Highway 59 in Houston, Texas. Again, it's in our genetic make-up to drink mass quantities of alcohol until we pass out and piss ourselves. The gene is lurking inside of him, like a dormant illness, waiting for that first taste of beer or wine or cheap whiskey. Then, it will come alive, controlling him, begging him for more. I know what he can become. I've seen it. I've lived with it. I could NEVER wish that for my baby!)
So, now I sit here, writing. As much as I love to write about nothingness, I'd much rather be doing adult things with my hubby. Remember, he's been working night this week, and I miss his company. I desperately want to snuggle up to him and fall asleep in his arms, but, instead, the monkey is getting to do that. My kid is getting the attention I desperately want. Sounds lame doesn't it- that I want Husband's attention, but, instead, the kid is getting it. It almost makes me sound jealous, doesn't it?! And, what if I am?! Is that bad?! Is it bad to want to do very adult things with my incredibly sweet and sexy husband? Isn't that what married people are supposed to do? Most men would jump at the chance to snuggle and do their wives, right?!
I've heard of men being jealous of the attention their wives give to their children. But I've never heard of it the other way around. But, I do understand why Jude yearns for his dad's attention tonight. He didn't get to see his dad all week, and he missed him-just like I did. And now, we both desire Husband's attention. It's weird to be competing with my kid. Weird!
But now this is what will happen: Husband will read Jude another 10 books. Then, Husband will turn out the lights and snuggle with Jude. Eventually, Husband will fall asleep in Jude's room. I'll try to wake Husband and tell him to move to our bed where we can snuggle. He might move, but I doubt it. He's incredibly tired from working nights. If he does move, he'll shuffle his way to our bed and plop down on it like a fat guy doing a belly flop in the neighbor's pool. I'll try to snuggle up against him, but he won't be responsive. Instead, he'll be snoring or grinding his teeth. I'll be left alone with no one to comfort me. So, I'll turn to my book on the night stand. I'll join Edward, Bella and Jacob. And, I'll enjoy their company until I fall asleep.
That's what will happen...
According to the Associated Press, "North Korea heightened its militarist rhetoric toward the U.S., Japan and South Korea on Thursday, threatening retaliation for any attempt to shoot down the rocket. Quoting an unidentified North Korean general, the North Korean Central News Agency said Japan would be struck with a "thunderbolt of fire" if it attempts to intercept the multistage rocket."
Shit! I don't want to be caught up in a "thunderbolt of fire"!
So, if Japan shoots it down, I guess I'll just bend over and kiss my ass good-bye!
Don't worry, I've had a good time on the planet! It's been nice talking to you!
(I'm just kidding here, folks! I'm sure if anything serious happens, they will gather up all the foreigners and ship our asses back. So, who knows, maybe I'll get a free trip to the States as a result. I can wish, can't I??!!)
Thursday, April 2, 2009
Since they are way too advanced for my kiddo, I just gave him the cards so he could look at the pictures. (Remember, he's only 4 and can't read, yet. But, we're working on it.) So, the kid often dumps them out and looks at them asking me various questions about this state or that state. I answer his questions and read him the information written on the cards. He usually goes through a few and moves on to something more interesting, like attacking me with Spiderman or running for his life from a crazed T-Rex.
So, this morning while I was checking my e-mail, he came up to me and showed me several cards naming them correctly. He made it through California, Arizona, Texas, New York, Hawaii, Louisiana, Montana, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Illinois, Florida, Oregon, Washington and a few others. He even remembered a few state birds and a few landmarks. I was quite impressed.
Then, I decided to see if he knew a few country flags. We had talked about them several weeks ago. So, I went on the computer and showed him various country flags. To my surprise, the kid knew the following flags: Japan, USA, Korea, France, Italy, Germany, Mexico, and a few others. Holy shit! The kid is smarter than me, and he's only 4 years old. This sucks!