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regular readers of j.flav will already know that we're back home after lovely (impossibly short) long weekend in london. what an excellent trip and wonderful birthday :) i may have to insist on a long weekend away every year for my birthday....

so i turned 28 and no major calamities occured- my hairline is still receeding at the usual rate, so it's business as usual until 29.

i've got some pictures to post- j.mo pretty much covered all of the food-related activities already and since eating is the bulk of what we did i don't really have too much to tell you that you didn't already know. the food was awesome though- lys, i now know why wagamama left you weak in the knees. and our all veg indian dinner kicked ass, along with the two brunches we had. i was a little pained by the fact that a grande chai tea from stahbies costs the equivalent of $7us... that didn't stop me from having a second one though ;) london is just expensive- there's no way around it. everything costs so much money, especially when you show up with american dollars and a big appetite.

but it was worth every penny and it was so lovely to spend time with jon and mags. they're the best-est and i cannot wait for them to be back in boston.

alrighty- phototime...

the view from the top of a doubledeckah bus:
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j.mo entering the tate for another yoko inspired close encounter with modern art:
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(i was nervously following him around- waiting for him to morph into modernartmonkey and scramble to the top and start tossing plastic boxes around, later to be escorted out and promptly deported)

my bday present from mags and jon was a trip for all of us on the london eye:
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naturally the batteries in the digital camera just as we were sealed into our capsule and hoisted oh so high into the london sky, so all i have are a couple of snaps from my phone. my palms are starting to sweat again as i type this- it's really high up and takes about a half hour to go 'round. but the view was awesome, even if it did cause an ulcer.
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there were lots of bad boots in london too- clearly this is a global epidemic, tragically overshadowed by the trvialities of bird flu:
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i like these two a lot:
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and now for the gluttons themselves...
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thank you j, mags and jon for such a wonderful weekend and a truly special birthday. i've got another post coming in a day or two re: the incredible birthday present j.mo got me.... so stay tuned.

hope everyone's week is off to a good start :)(:


up up and away...

dearest butter queen,

we'll be seeing you in the morning... i hope you've de-lurgied the futon.


ps- and i'll be seeing *you*, dear internets, on monday... i'll be the jet-lagged 28 year old nursing a soylatte with an extra shot- watchyaselves ;)



so last night was my big debut as a grad student- first night of classes. and can i just tell you- after schleping it out to bridgewater for school the past 2+ years it was a more than refreshing change of cast & crew & subject matter. no more sitting between 18 year old B(F)FF's (best (fucking) friends forever, for the acronym deficient) as they text message each other about last night's kegstands at mach 5... incessantly... this was during the drool fest that was a human approach to biology. we won't even talk about the crazy 'mature aged student' with really bad dandruff in last semester's economics class that gave us a play-by-play update on her kitchen remodelling in gross detail every week. dusty cranberry, i believe. but they had to use gray primer and on and on and on.

there were less than 15 other students in my class last night- and every single one of them was either a minority or an international student... and/or someone that had worked/lived/studied overseas for an extended period of time. there's a whole lotta women- only three guys, including myself- so really there's only two guys and one gay guy. and those other two are probably in the process of having their gender reassigned anyways so it's a moot point. the professor was really good and avoided passing the talking stick (something i was a little afraid of with this program- in the interview they mentioned a large amount of group work and potential handholding while we cry and look at our girliebits like in that movie... was it fried green tomatoes? anyways, i put on my brave face and zoned out with an episode of abfab during that part of the conversation)

anyways, so far so good- i'm loving being in school for something i'm actually interested in and has some meaning. today i have orientation and class from 4-7p. then it's home to pack for london!!!

hope everyone has a good day.



exhibit a

here's my ticket to whatever it is that comes next (and at least $20,000 more in student loans). there's no turning back now ;)

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from 60 and sunny on saturday

to 30 and snowy on monday.

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my toes are wet from the trek from south station to work via the bank and cvs. that's no fun.


something's not right...

it's so not normal to be looking out the window at work seeing people ice skating on the common and it's nearly 60 degrees the third week of january. this just doesn't happen.

so it's saturday and i'm at work . this would be the third one this month. only 9 more to go and my weekends will be mine again. on the train this morning i was flipping through a copy of the most recent boston phoenix and came across this article on the biggest jacakass on television (well, if you care to refer to the fox 'news' network as television- it's more of an obnoxious portal to the ugly red underworld, with bill o'reilly manning the gate so he can cut your mike as you enter, ensuring no one registers any unfair or unbalanced complaints re: constitutional rights)

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my only regret while reading the article was that i missed bill's appearance on the david letterman show... letterman scores some serious points in my book for this comment:

“I have the feeling about 60 percent of what you say is crap.”

instead of wishing my fellow americans would tune in and pay attention, for once i really wish they would tune out and stop watching fox... and espeically stop watching the o'reilly factor. there's nothing fair and balanced about any of it. and to sell it as such is just plain tragic. c'mon people- we're smarter than this.

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misc friday bidness

sorry i had nothing crafty cooking in my blogpot yesterday. mistah trainer wrecked my body in the afternoon (today i woke up feeling like i aged 30 years overnight), but i guess that's why i'm paying him. so all i could think about the rest of the afternoon/evening was homemade mexican (quesadillas/guacamole with lots of fresh cilantro/spanish rice/refried beans), several dos equis with lime, ER, and bed. no bloggin' mojo to be found.

as j.mo mentioned already some sort of mystery aquaSARS (fishflu, perhaps?) tore through town. first victim was hamburgerhelper, our beloved little snail. then over the past two days three of the goldfish have been flushed. the last man standing is our four year old mistah sushi, but he's definitely going down for the count. i know he's only a goldfish, but c'mon- we've been together for 4 years. that means every time we've done our annual move the past 4 years his tank gets drained and he gets packaged up and hauled off into the sunset with us to the next abode. i guess 4 years is probably a good run for a goldfish. he's probably about 107 in human years.

so even though i was accepted to grad school i'm not allowed to register for classes until my final transcript from BSC arrives with grades from the fall semester. of course that would be the way things work. i can't tell you how many times this month i've emailed/called/faxed the stupid request form in to the registrar's office at BSC. finally last week i sent them a letter pleading for a freaking transcript and even included a pre-paid, pre-addressed fedex for them to use. with classes starting next week i was about to give up hope since the admissions office still didn't have it as of yesterday.

but i went online today and checked the tracking number- thank fucking christ/buddha/oprah... it's being delivered today. so as long as someone looks at it today and does whatever it is they need to i can register and start classes next week. this is just the john/lys/g way of how things always happen. it's rarely easy and often gets filed under 'we just can't have nice things.'

blah blah blah. next week is london and right now that's all i'm thinking about. a much needed break for j.mo and i and some time spent feeding with mags and jon will be the perfect way to spend my burfday (go shorty). i've got to start fasting for currybinge06. mags- i hope you have something with an elastic waist ;)


i'm a little sad my choice of eveningwear didn't make any of the red carpet roundup reviews....

nothing says heehaw lovin in the back of a pickup quite like my new gym t-shirt...

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but i don't know if i love the shirt as much as i love the fact that j.mo bought it for me- clearly he likes a kansas hog wrestler in a pinkish t shirt as much as the next guy. maybe we could make a sequel to brokeback mountin? midwest hogboys? someone get ang on the phone.

so common...

dear gspotinc readers... this is an older/previouslypostedpost... but if you check the comments you'll learn that the real leanne braman (or someone who believes they are leanne braman)has paid us all a visit.

there's a rather funny photo on boston.com at the moment:
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with this caption-
Leanne Braman of Florida enjoyed the snow at a Prudential Center holiday display yesterday. A storm tonight could make for a messy commute tomorrow.

Does this rich bitch decked out in rare albino cheetah fur really look like she's 'enjoying the snow?'

I think she actually just purchased a giant solid gold ornament from tiffany's and is unhappily awaiting the arrival of her army of low-paid imported domestics to cart the thing over to beacon hill on their backs with her riding on top. You can't fool me boston.com

you go girl-

Please run for President.

from cnn.com

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NEW YORK (AP) -- Sen. Hillary Clinton on Monday blasted the Bush administration as "one of the worst" in U.S. history and compared the Republican-controlled House of Representatives to a plantation where dissenting voices are squelched.
Speaking during a Martin Luther King Jr. Day event, Clinton also offered an apology to a group of Hurricane Katrina survivors "on behalf of a government that left you behind, that turned its back on you." Her remarks were met with thunderous applause by a mostly black audience at the Canaan Baptist Church of Christ in Harlem.
The House "has been run like a plantation, and you know what I'm talking about," said Clinton, D-New York. "It has been run in a way so that nobody with a contrary view has had a chance to present legislation, to make an argument, to be heard."
"We have a culture of corruption, we have cronyism, we have incompetence," she said. "I predict to you that this administration will go down in history as one of the worst that has ever governed our country."


3 topics to discuss...

1) you know you're getting old when the first thing you do when you get home from a long day of work/contact with the general public is head upstairs and put your stylin' new slippers on:

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sad but true, time and time again the best part of my day is finally getting home and sliding my feet into my lovely new slippers that j.mo got me for christmas.

mere days and i'll be 28 (shut up, lys ;). next stop thirty. before you know it i'll be 'getting' a yearly colonoscopy. now there's reason alone to head for the hills. or rarotonga.

2) a few months ago we added a snail to our happy goldfish family. while i'm the slackass father that never took a photo of dear junior, hamburgerhelper (yes, that was his name) resembled something like this:

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he was a good little snail. we laughed. we cried. we sucked on algae covered pebbles together (hey, us vegans gotta get our b12 from somewhere)

well for a few days now he's been floating on the surface of the fishtank. eyeswideshut. just bobbing along- following the current and getting nibbled at by the other residents.

today, this is his new address. may he rest in peace:

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3) so i happened to mention a little incident involving a sparrow and chicken remnants the other day. now everywhere i go i see chicken bones on the sidewalks, in the street, on the T- anywhere other than in the trash bin. tomorrow i'll get to work and there will be domestic fowl carcass on my desk, i'm convinced. it's like a whole army of fried chickens took to the sky, got sucked into a jet engine and have been raining down on various boston zipcodes ever since. so watch where you're walking.


'meat'balls and jesusburgers (and good music too)

i came home from work today (yes, i'm the sorry schlep operating in a perpetual sleep deficit that's working saturdays for the next 3 or 4 months to make up for having mondays off for school this past fall) to find j.mo in the kitchen up to his elbows in homemade meatball mix :P oh mastermeatball i bow to you. he also made homemade brownies. jealous? c'mon ladies- i bet there isn't a single one of you who isn't moist at the thought of j'mo's vegballs and brownies. i can't wait to get my gorge on.

i had been meaning to compose a music-inspired post (for reasons which i shall divulge shortly) but kept running out of time. or patience. or the desire to breathe, let alone type. but after last night it can't wait any longer.

the original inspiration for this post is this woman-
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i've been listening to kristin hersh (seen here with her 50footwave bandmates) for a long time- she's an integral part of my daily soundtrack. in high school it was thowing muses. in college she went solo and completed operation win-me-over- entirely. and then she formed her new band 50footwave. with each incarnation she brings something different- from wholewheatrockinguitarbread to a hauntingly beautiful barebones lyrical genius... and my personal favorite mix of the two- sunny border blue. j.mo and i both agree it was by far the best album of 2001.

fifty foot wave recently released a five song ep of new tracks available for download for *free* at www.throwingmusic.com/freemusic

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i'll let k explain-

"Money has so polluted the music world that my overwhelming urge right now is to divorce money from recorded music. Over the last 2 years we've been relying on standard 'industry' channels to help us educate listeners about 50 Foot Wave and we've met resistance every step of the way -- caused by little other than money -- and to an extent I've never seen before.

So we're sending free recordings off into the world to do their work. If people enjoy these songs and are excited by them, we ask that they share them with others. The music business is about fame and huge profits -- egos and greed -- music itself, is not."

it's a point of view i more than respect. while the masses are spoonfed the plastic and the sparkle there's a whole world of amazing and beautiful music going on. people who love what they do and can really be called artists- and yet they struggle beacuase the popmusicmachinestreetsweeper never stops making its rounds.

so if you're into the idea of independent music, thoughtfully assembled, passionately played and carrying some real substance then have a listen.

and speaking of substance.
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8 years ago on a whim i picked up imogen heap's first cd. i knew nothing about her but knew i instantly liked the cd. but then nothing seemed to happen for a real long time. i honestly didn't even know she was the front woman of frou frou until very recently. but then her new album speak for yourself landed and wow. even more amazing than the complexity of the sounds and her powerful voice is the fact that the project was entirely her own. she had to remortgage her flat in london to pay for it. and she did everything- all the lyrics, all the instruments and the mind-boggling computer stuff. and when all was said and done and the new cd was ready, then she went out looking for a record company to distribute it for her. talk about the ultimate way to maintain artistic control.

seeing her last night here in boston was simply wonderful.

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i suspect that if kristin landed on this same stage she'd look around and wonder if she had suffered some sort of tourbus-induced medical calamity and was now in and a soviet-era ICU. all those wires and electronic things and a laptop. while their finished products are lightyears apart on the musicicaltasteometer they both work from that same place- that place of unbounded creativity and true love for what they do. there's no formulated agenda for taking over the radio, no glossy g-string goody shots and i suspect they both still buy their own toothpaste- scandal!

so check out their websites, have a listen and enjoy- i know i do.

on a completely unrelatedly related note...

j.mo recently checked in on his mum, presently upstairs watching her 9th hour of tv... flipping between the home shopping network and pax. (let's face it an hour spent watching della reese touching angelbits or an hour spent watching pseudomoomoos on parade for $79.99 each- who could choose??) anyways- he asked if she wanted any food- nope. any brownies? nope. (mind you her sweetooth is about to rot out of her head- literally)

the reason why? she went to church today and had a cheeseburger from mcdonald's on the way home. cheeseburgers with jesus.

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god help/save/take her.

(or strike me down)

on that note- time for *my* brownie and coolwhip finale. then i'm going to hoist myself up the stairs to bed and sleep until june.


and what was inside??

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a grande soy chai latte. i couldn't do it any longer. a whole week without stahbies and i was losing my mind.

ah sweet chai bliss.



Guess who's starting grad school in a few weeks????????????????????????

I just found out this morning that my application was (finally) accepted.

It only took 3 years of getting a BA in Australia and then another 2 years of packing in classes while working.

Oh sweet relief.

Excuse me while I fly around the room for a few mins. And all I had was a cup of tea today ;)


kentucky fried sparrow

i'm trying *real* hard to shake this case of BDD (blogging deficit disorder) that has landed ever since the proverbial (domestic) shit hit the fan last week. (2 weeks tops and they'll be advertising a drug for this condition on TV.) it also probably wasn't the wisest of times to kick the stahbies habit either- but it was coming down to a choice between overpriced soy lattes and car insurance. i've just had zero energy for anything beyond the bare essentials of showering, eating, and showing up to drool on myself at work for a few hours a day.

up, up and away.

so today i was walking over to the o-b-g-y-m when i happened to notice a little sidewalk sumtin-sumtin:

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a non-descript sparrow hopping into and out of a half-mangled KFC container that missed the trash bin.

but then it happened- and i saw it. oh the sheer horror of watching this small bird pecking at the remnants of a chicken bone in the KFC box. at first i thought maybe the little fellah was looking for some leftover fry-bits. or perhaps he had a hankering for some of the colonel's secret blend of eleven herbs and spices and was looking for some straycrispybatterflecks.

or maybe the little fucker was just chowing on some chicken.

i don't know- i could very well be slipping down insanity hill, but isn't it wrong to see a sparrow eating fried chicken...?? a fellow winged creature- plucked and battered and fried and being devoured by another bird?

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and topping other animal related news...

boston.com has had this article floating around now for a few days. some tahd in new mexico thought it would be a good idea to capture a poor little mouse in his house and then incinerate it in the backyard with the rest of the crap from his lawn. instead the mouse, fur ablaze, ran back into his house and the whole thing caught fire and burned down.

one word: karma.

good luck to you mistahmousetorcher... when you're reborn as a battery chicken and spend your days unable to turn around in your 3"x3" cage stacked 20 high and end up in the colonel's evil clutches as a bucket of honey bbq popcorn pieces... only to spend your final hour being pecked at by an unremorseful sparrow on washington street.

when j.mo and i lived in hull we definitely had a mouse issue, especially once it got cold out. and while miss blimpers was quite adept at catching them, all she ever wanted to do was play with them all night- ensuring no one slept. many a night did we get up, put the cat in the bathroom and move furniture around until one of us caught the mouse under a tupperware container and then took it outside and let it go. on one notably snowy and windy night after said mouse was captured i didn't have the heart to toss it out into the roaring blizzard. instead i got dressed and walked outside in the blinding snow to let it go in the boathouse downstairs- where it was assured a comfie and warm night's sleep (and easy repeat access to our upstairs apartment whenever it chose to visit again.)

ain't no flamin' mouse burning this house down. :)



*recently redefined as anything other than the past week

oh me oh my where to begin, i ask you?

this has been one of the strangest (and at times most trying) weeks of my life. i/we've been living in some sort of c-grade twilight zone for days now, complete with the basement created 'special' effects where you can see the strings... and don't forget the bad voiceovers too. i certainly don't want to bore/freak you out with the details and quite frankly i'd rather not relieve any of it anyways, so let's just say that j.mo's mum got really sick. after a string of sleepless nights, a marathon clean-up of ungodly proportions, a trip to the hospital, missed work, and other assorted pleasantries things have calmed down a little and the necessary features of daily life (ie: soy lattes, the o-b-g-y-m and blogging) can more or less resume.

while she's doing better that earlier in the week there remain some rather large questions bobbing around on the horizon. the extent of her recovery? returning to work? being home alone during the day? and the severity of the inevitable next round of unwellness? time will tell, i suppose. and it's really going to take a few weeks of watching and waiting before we can really understand where this is all leading.

in the meantime, my heart goes out to my guy. there's nothing harder in this situation than having to watch him deal with all of this. i can handle the myriad of details and issues and problems and do whatever has to be done... kinda like the postal service making the rounds no matter what the weather(i think it may be an aquarian thing)- that is until i have to see john trudge through it as well. there isn't anything i wouldn't do for him (or his mum for that matter). and if anything speaks to the kind of love we share it's seeing how even under the most stressful, emotional and uncertain of circumstances we move as one. he truly is the most wonderful person i've ever known and spending my days with him is nothing short of a privilege.

pass the kleenex.

that'll do as far as that topic goes. well- one last thing. i owe a few people a sincere thanks. thank you andrea and danny for being there on wednesday. thank you maggie for being there for me with all your lovin' and insight on this topic. and a big thanks to my own mom for coming to boston on friday to spend the day here so john and i could go to work and have a little mental break from the constant worry- even if it was only for a day you have no idea the world of good it did all of us.

upwards and onwards.

the butter queen recently informed us all she's shedding her yenta ways and splurging on such things as take-out (sorry, take-away in commonwealth speak) and movies. but then today i read that her and dr jon are taking it a giant step further. they're going to some sort of classical music shindig in london. sherry and smoking jackets- that's what comes to mind. anyone who knows mags- can you picture her with a cigar?

i'm worried. why? because in less than three weeks j.mo and i are jetting off to london for my birthday to see jon and mags. and if they've gone all classicalmusichighbrow on me then what's gonna happen to our hands-tied-behind-our-backs-all-we-can-eat-curry-binge? and will there still be mango chutney wrestling afterwards? this could change everything!

i know there's more, but i'm running out of steam.... that's what going to work *and* visiting the gym on a saturday will do to ya.

let's see- last random bits. i got my grades for the semester and nearly fell over when i saw i got 5 A's. there's no way i got an A in economics (trust me, j.mo and i did the math)- buddha bless grading on a curve. i hate to blow my own horn (let's face it- i just don't have that kind of dexterity) but damn- on top of work, an additional part time job and fulltime school... i was quite content, to say the least. now i'm just waiting to hear from grad school. classes start the 20-something of january, so if i'm getting in i'll be hearing any minute now. and if i'm not getting in there will be one flaming bag of dog poo left on the doorstep of lesley university's admissions office, that's fo sho.

lasagna's nearly done and so am i.

more at 11.



do you smell something burning?

as soon as i woke up this morning i came right downstairs and explained the dream i'd just had to j.mo...

we were both at something resembling my work xmas party (i say 'resembling' because i skillfully dodged that evening under the guise of final exams/not-tonight-i-have-a-headache). a certain recently plumpified celebrity that sings on a frequency audible only to humback whales (and unfortunately humans) was scheduled to perform:
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and all everyone was talking about the entire evening was how awful, how absolutely tragic it was that mariah carey had burnt her mouth on an xmas light during her performance-
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it all happened so fast. that mouth. the squealing. the xmas lights. and before anyone knew what was going on she was being carried off the stage, leaving a trail of smoke and the faint odor of grilled salmon in her orally scorched wake:
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i couldn't make this shit up if i wanted to. where does it come from is what i want to know? well, actually- i can explain the mariah carey cameo. new year's eve the tv was switched on at the party we were at around 11.30p- just in time to see this side of beef-- i mean linebacker-- i mean on ramp to I-95 north... err, you get the point.
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holy guacamole...

topping other random news this fine long weekend... we finally went to see bareback- oopsies- brokeback mountain.
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very good movie considering heath was in it- normally i'm the spokesperson for any australian export that finds its way north but he's one that should have stuck to sheep shearing in goulburn.
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(yes it's really the worldest largest merino sheep with a giftshop inside. yes i've been there- july 1992)
jake g on the other hand-
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oh yeah- wyoming was looking pretty sexy too ;)

before the movie we hit up the gap to dig through the piles of end-of-year sale bits (aka gifts people promptly returned as soon as their givers had cleared out). this year my mostly lame boss didn't walk around the corner to stahbies or dunkin donuts and get us all gift cards. instead he sent us an email before he retreated to the most (self)important country on zee planete saying that for xmas we could expense $50 worth of anything we wanted. while i appreciate being able to spend $50 on anything and later being reimbursed for it, wouldn't you agree that's a lame gift? no card, no personally delivered thanks for shoveling group pnrs into the travelfurnace all year...

anyways- i can't wait to fill out my expense report tomorrow- which category do i enter 'NEW UNDERWEAR $12.50' under again?

hope everyone had a good new year's.


happy 5 years :)(:

how it's possible that five years have gone by already is beyond me...

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i sho do love you.