Thursday, May 29

Say Cheese!

A few weeks ago (weeks, months, they are all blending right now) I signed up for one of those community classes – Camera Smarts: Want photography to be as EASY as possible? Learn the secrets of getting professional looking photos, using just the automatic modes of your camera. Don't spoil another birthday or special event. Come learn how to get the most out of your digital camera. Everyone needs a little "camera smarts".

It’s a two-day course, 4-hours a day. Last night was my first class. The minute I walked into the class I realized just how long it has been since I’ve been a student. I thought I was doing well because I had brought my camera with me. Camera Smarts = using my camera, right? I realized my mistake as I looked at everyone sitting there with notepads and pens (not very high tech, techies would have brought a laptop… I should have brought a laptop). Let me interject here that I have trained adult classes for the past 10 years, so you’d think I would have realized what I needed to bring with me. I didn’t even have a pen. I had to run back to my car to get a pen, and then I had to borrow paper from the young lady sitting next to me. Holy cow!

The class was amazing. I learned more about my digital camera in four hours than I had in the months since I’ve owned it. Of course, I would probably know more if I would read the manual, but who wants to read those? The instructor was very knowledgeable, even if he was 10 (ok, he was probably in his late 20’s, but give me my moment of bitterness). Unfortunately my company scheduled an “emergency” trip for next week, so I’m missing the other four hours of class. Argh – the frustration.

I also realized that I might be watching too much BBC/Jane Austen/etc. The instructor started talking about when he went to Brighton and some of the amazing pictures he took. My immediate thought was Brighton, England. I had all the imagery in mind… beaches, ancient architecture, the works. I was very confused when he started talking about snow. It can’t snow in Brighton! Oh, of course, Brighton Ski Resort, which would have been the first thought of any Utah native, but, oh no, not this one. I am an expatriate still living in Utah. ☺

By the way, I had my second night of bowling league tonight. After another rocky start (my first game was 107 or something), I bowled a 173 – I closed every frame but the tenth frame. My third game was a 153. I’m a total bowler!

Wednesday, May 28

Surprise... NOT!

A couple of months ago, my roommate was talking about this movie he remembered from his childhood that he wished he could find on DVD (Across the Great Divide). Well, one day as I was online, I happened to find that DVD on I was so excited, I bought it for him for his birthday. Yes, his birthday isn't until November, but I was excited that I could actually get him a meaningful gift.

The DVD has been sitting in my room for a few weeks - as I'm not a very patient person, I hid it so that I wouldn't give it to him early. It's been helpful that Jeff's been out of town since the middle of April.

Anyway, Jeff finally came home last Saturday after being gone for weeks. As you can imagine, he had quite a large stack of mail to go through. I was in my room reading when I hear Jeff say, "hey Katie, guess what I found." (I'm paraphrasing here, I'm not sure exactly what he said.) He came to my door holding... yes, you guessed it, the DVD of Across the Great Divide. I tried to be excited for him on the outside while my heart fell on the inside - but I've been told that my face is too expressive, much to my embarrassment at times. I probably could never play poker. I figured he could see that something was wrong, so I said "hey, guess what I got you for your birthday?" Ugh!

The moral of the story? Don't try to do anything nice for anyone months in advance.

Thursday, May 22

Instructional ≠ Beginner

Tonight was my first night participating in a bowling league. I was bowling last Saturday and the owner of the bowling alley approached me about participating in a Women's Instructional League. Hmmm... instructional... that would be helpful. Learning how to bowl with a bunch of other beginners? Awesome! And my mom and dad were both big bowlers back in the day. My mom bowled in a Women's League, my dad in a Men's League, and they bowled together in a Mixed League.

I arrived at the bowling alley a little early. I've been looking forward to this, and I'm ready to learn. However, as several of the other women arrive, I realize that I'm in trouble - most of them have their own bowling ball. Strike One (pun totally intended). Then, ALL the women start putting on their own bowling shoes. Strike Two. My bowling partner was this adorable septuagenarian who starts telling me about all of the bowling tournaments she's participated in and how she's been bowling in leagues for the past 50 years. Strike Three. So much for bowling with other beginners, eh?

My bowling score has improved greatly over the past few months - I frequently bowl with co-workers, my friend, Amanda and my roommate, Jeff. However, my first game this evening was appalling. I wanted to sue the instructor for false advertising. Instructional, my foot. However, it wasn't false advertising - we did get a lot of instruction, which is actually really cool, but as I'm trying to correct months of bad posture, bad ball handling, etc., I just bowled poorly (I didn't even break 100). All I could do was laugh. Yes, there was a point in the evening where I wanted to cry, but I laughed and laughed instead. My poor bowling partner - who's high score was 181 (seriously, she's in her 70's and she bowled a 181?) - was trying to be so encouraging. It was adorable.

I will persevere, of course. Now that I know what to expect, how much worse can it get, right?

Saturday, May 17

Movie Trivia

While I was in Kansas, my friend Laurenda showed me some of her favorite blogs where the authors had created a quiz using movie quotes. Since I love movies, I've decided to do the same thing. Below are quotes from ten different movies. Please feel free to make your guesses. As soon as I receive a comment with a correct guess, I'll post the answer. Bonus points (bonus = extra praise from me) if you can guess who said it. Did that just make sense? I never know...

1. “[T]hough it be not written down, yet forget not that I am an ass.”

Much Ado About Nothing. Michael Keaton's crazy character.
--Good job Allison - I hope you remember your password so you can actually log in and post . ;-)

2. “I'm saying this with love, compassion, and the spirit of true sisterhood... you are full of [crap]!”

3. “You've got an overdeveloped sense of vengeance. It's going to get you into trouble someday.”

4. “All's I want is some peace and quiet!”
“Okay, I'll be quiet.”
“And I'll be peace!”

What About Bob. (Dr. Leo Marvin (Richard Dreyfuss), Bob Wiley (Bill Murray) and the Marvin son, Siggy, while giving the peace sign with his fingers.)
-- Way to go Sara

5. “Next time you're talking to yourself, tell yourself you're single and end the conversation!”

While You Were Sleeping. (Said by a nurse, I think, to Sandra Bullock.)
-- Lots of bonus points for Sara

6. “My life is like death. My children are the spawn of hell, and you're the devil.”
“But baby, we LIKE you.”

Overboard! lolololol...this was me and you talking, not too long ago! Goldie Hahn's character to Kurt Russell's characters, whose "movie" names I've forgotten. ugh.
-- Nicely done, Laurenda. Character names are Dean (Proffitt, I think) and Annie - although Annie's the name Dean gives her - I can't remember her character's actual name right now... ugh!

7. “You've changed - you know that?”
“Yes - I suppose I have! How about this: Peace, love, dope? Now get the hell out of here!”

8. “You're in America now, speak American.”

9. "Last night, Darth Vader came down from planet Vulcan and told me that if I didn't take Lorraine out that he'd melt my brain."

Back to the Future. Ummm...Mr. McFly...what is his name? He's played by Cripsin Glover, but the character's name is lost. Grrrr...again!!!...
ANYWAY! He's talking to Marty (after Marty appeared to him as "Darth Vadar" the night before). Love it.
-- Another right answer from Laurenda. And it's George, George McFly - he's your density, I mean, your destiny.

10. “I love you.”
“I know.”

Empire Strikes Back. Han to Leia, before he's frozen in carbonite. sigh. (OR! Return of the Jedi, when Leia is shot and they have this little repeat conversation outside the "fort" door thingy).
-- I'm glad someone caught that this could be either movie. In Empire, Leia tells Han she loves him, Han says "I know." In Jedi, it's reversed. Now, the original lines were supposed to be "I love you." "I love you, too." However, Harrison Ford felt that Han Solo wouldn't say that, so he asked George Lucas if he could change the line. One of the best lines of the movie, AND totally fitting of Han Solo, I think.

BONUS Quote (added 5/19): "It's not the years, honey, it's the mileage."

Wednesday, May 14


I was reminded today of an embarrassing story. While working in Pittsburgh a few years ago, I stayed over one weekend (well, I stayed over several weekends, but this is a particular weekend). Since it was nearing Christmas, I decided to do some Christmas shopping, so I drove a couple of hours to, what I was told, was an awesome Outlet Mall. It was pretty cool, but that has nothing to do with the story.

As the day progressed, I needed to visit the Ladies' room. So, I followed all the signs for the restrooms, and got into my stall. After a minute or two, I heard male voices. "Oh, dear," I thought to myself, "those poor men have somehow come into the Ladies' room by mistake. I'll just wait for them to leave." Well, they did leave, but I immediately heard more male voices. "Oh, dear," I thought to myself, "silly me, I have somehow come into the Men's room by mistake.

I started laughing - quietly, of course, so no one would hear me - is humiliation really real if no one is there to witness it? I had to come up with a plan of action. I decided it would be best for me to wait until the restroom cleared, and then I would make a run for it. Mortification!! So, after several minutes of staying hidden in my stall, I figured that no one was left in the room, so I opened the door and ran. Hmmmm, I thought on my way out, how did I miss those urinals on the way in? I didn't even wash my hands, I went as quickly as I could to the REAL Ladies' room - laughing all the way, ho, ho, ho - and washed my hands there.

Sunday, May 11

Excuse me?

I travel quite a bit for my job, and I get to meet some legen… wait for it… dary people. And quite often, these people become good friends. While working in Eugene, OR, I made such a friend. He has three lovely children – one boy and twin girls (Jasmine and Meghan – named by their older brother after Disney characters). We were implementing my company’s new computer system and were working late nights (newspapers often publish after midnight, so you do the math). Ian’s wife was bringing him dinner – how cute is that? – and he wanted to introduce us. So, we went out to the parking lot to meet her. She had the girls with her (I had met them previously).

Now, I must interject here and describe my attire. I had on a really cute brown skirt with white polka dots – trust me, it was really cute. I also had on some really cute shoes. And seriously, would I own anything else but really cute shoes?

OK, let’s continue with the story. I went out to meet Ian’s wife, and the girls were there. I was talking to the girls and both of them commented on how much they really liked my outfit. I was thinking – wow, how cool am I that 7-year-olds like my clothes? Then Jasmine burst my bubble by saying "I think my grandma has a skirt like that." I see, your grandmother has a skirt like mine. Hmmmm, so much for being hip, right? Ian’s wife, trying to mollify the situation, leaned over and told me that the girls had a really hip grandma. Not to be outdone, however, Meghan then interjected, "I think she has shoes like that, too." Great – I’m under 40 and I share wardrobe items with a grandmother.

Friday, May 9

I'm a Scandanavian blue-eyed blond

I previously mentioned an additional story relating to my being a blue-eyed blond. So, in January I spent two weeks in Mexico City working with the three trainers that comprise my company's Mexico City office. Over the weekend, my friend Lisa (who also works with us) flew down for some fun in the sun. On Friday, Blanca, Lisa (a fair-skinned redhead) and I drove to a small town called Taxco.
As we were driving back to Mexico City, we were stuck in traffic behind a Costco truck - don't even get me started on the Americanization of the world - did you know that there is a Hooters in Mexico City? Anyway, I digress. As often happens in Mexico, there were children at the road side selling food items to keep one cool. These food items ranged from cucumbers to jicama to some things I'm not even sure about. A young girl, maybe 9 or 10, approached the passenger side of the car. Picture the scene...Blanca was driving, I was in the passenger seat, and Lisa was in the back seat. I rolled down the window as the girl approached. When she reached the car, she looked at me, looked at Lisa, looked back at me, then finally looked at Blanca and (in Spanish) asked "Africanas?"
Now, I don't speak Spanish, but I understood what that young girl was asking. I was about to answer "si," but Blanca beat me to the punch with a resounding "no." "Gringas" was the girls second choice. Second choice. But, seriously, of ALL the countries that a blond and a redhead might be from, and Africa is the first choice? Do I really look like I'm from Africa? And we were in Mexico - Mexico borders which country?

My "sister"

Here's a picture of me with my friend Laurenda. It was taken a few years ago, hence my short hair (among other differences). As you can see, as cute as we both are, we don't look alike.

Wednesday, May 7

Welcome to Welcome Anyway

I have decided to join the blogging bandwagon. I don't have children to provide me with entertaining stories, however, I find most of my stories entertaining. Maybe you will, maybe you won't.
As a beginning post, I thought I would share the story of my pedicure last weekend. I went to Kansas and Missouri over the weekend to visit a friend (Kansas) and my sister (Missouri). On Saturday, my friend and I went to get a pedicure at Pretty Nails. As Laurenda and I were sitting there, the young Vietnamese girl working on my toes looked at the two of us and asked if we were sisters. Now, there are many times when I think that Laurenda and I are the same person split in two, but that has nothing to do with our appearances. I am a very Scandinavian blue-eyed blonde (which leads to yet, another story for another time) and Laurenda is (not sure on the nationality) a brown-eyed brunette. We kindly chuckled and said that no, we were just friends. I'll have to include a picture later so you can see that we really don't look alike at all.
The best part, however, is on Sunday, I attended a church function with my sister (my REAL sister) and we were told that we looked nothing like sisters. I'm sorry, but my whole family looks alike. Sadly, I look more like the boys in my family than the girls (or so I've been told - repeatedly), but we all look enough alike to be related. Crazy.
So, this will just be a spot for me to post funny stories (yes, no kids but I do have funny stories).