Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Vacation? It means nothing.

Just call me a doormat, because I might as well just lay down and let everyone walk all over me.

I have said it before, and I will say it again. I am way too nice when it comes to my job. 

My manager called me at a quarter after ten this morning. Luckily for me, I learned my lesson after day one and started sleeping with my cell phone in the other room just for this exact circumstance. So I didn't get the message until ten minutes until noon. All it said was to call him when I got the chance.

So I called.

I have it on my calendar that you're scheduled to come back Friday, right? 


Well, here's the thing...we're really short handed on Thursdays as it is, and I just didn't have time to rearrange the schedules to make up for you being do you think you can come in tomorrow and just take Friday off instead?

He didn't have the time? I scheduled my vacation in October. That's three freaking months to have Raver switch her day off from Thursday to Friday, and he couldn't manage it? And rather than asking her to do it, his solution is to call me, in the middle of my vacation, to ask me to come back a day early and take another day? 

Like that's not going to fuck with my sleep schedule or anything?

And like it's not Padawan's birthday today? Like we didn't have plans that involved staying out really late and then not worrying about it because we're off the next day? Like my whole life revolves around my job?

And doormat me...what did I do?

I said yes.

Even though I asked him on Christmas Eve before he left if he was sure my taking Thursday off wouldn't be a problem and he said, "We've got it covered, Chanel, enjoy your vacation" and I was absolutely guilt free on every count if I had said no...I still said yes.

At this point I can't tell if I'm just the best and most loyal employee they have or if I'm just a pushover. It could go either way at this point. Hell, it might even be a little of both.

And as happened last time, I'm quite sure that Manager Man will forget to inform JayJay that the days were switched, so I'll probably be getting a call Friday morning asking me where I am since I'm supposed to be back...

Good Lord, I should just take Saturday, too. I could demand it as compensation for a twice interrupted vacation. 

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

I have just realized I am a little bit crazy.

It is balls freezing cold outside, and I don't see how anyone with any choice would ever open their front door to let that atrocious weather inside. If I had a way of letting my dog relieve her bladder and bowels without having to go outside, I would do it. I just count my blessings that I took my vacation this week and I'm not out in that cold any more than I absolutely have to be, because if I had to walk to work in this weather...I'd just call and wait for someone to come pick me up rather than brave the subarctic weather we're currently enjoying. 

That's right. I'm on my vacation.

And I'm glad. 

Of course, I reminded everyone before I left on Christmas Eve that I was on vacation, and please don't forget and then call me and ask why I'm late. (They did this the last two times I scheduled vacation time, and I like to sleep in on my vacation!) And do you know what they did?

They called me this morning to find out if I was OK because I wasn't at work and I hadn't called.

Damn it. 

If I was as irresponsible and lazy as most of the other employees, then they wouldn't have called me to find out where I was until noon. But no, since I am always on time, and if I think I'm going to be late I give thirty minutes notice before I'm supposed to be there, they just freak out and think I died on my way to work. On the one hand, it's kind of flattering.

On the other hand it's damned annoying to be woken up so early in the morning when I didn't even crawl into bed until three.

Yes, it was a late night for me. I spent from nine in the evening until almost three in the company of a very charming British man by the name of Mr. Darcy. Alright, his real name is Colin Firth, but I was watching the entire BBC miniseries of Pride and Prejudice because Padawan put it in my stocking for me and once I started I couldn't stop. So I watched the whole thing, and the series inspired sweet dreams (although Colin Firth's Mr. Darcy has nothing on the Prior Philip version....) that were sadly ruined by the sound of my phone sounding the alarm this morning.

Because, even though it's been on the calendar since October, Manager Man forgot I was on my vacation. Again.


No rest for the weary...

In any event, I just thought I would let you guys know that I donated some of my things before Christmas because my closet was absolutely stuffed with things I didn't wear anymore or things I bought but really didn't like after I bought them and the return date had passed. I was rather proud of cutting down my boot collection from seven pairs to three. But know...I got seven new pairs of boots...

So now I have ten.

I'm not sure how that really happened. It shrank...and then grew back...and then grew some more.

As for my jeans...I cut those down from forty three pairs to thirty five. And then got four new pairs so it's back up to thirty nine. I feel like I really conquered on that one.

And then two pairs of house slippers...

Alright, look. I have this problem. I like to have lots of pretty things. I really can't help myself. When someone asks me what I want as a gift I say, "jeans" or "boots" or "slippers" or "pretty shirts" and I wind up with more than I should have and it just spirals away until I run out of room and have to donate things. But I can't just get rid of things like it's nothing!

Almost everything I own has a specific memory. And it gets ridiculous.

For instance, I haven't worn bras in well over a year now but I can't throw any of my bras out because of the following reasons:

I was wearing this bra the night I lost my virginity.
I was wearing this bra the night I got my first kiss.
I was wearing this bra when I went on my first date.
I was wearing this bra the night I met Padawan.
The night of my high school graduation.
My first day of college.
My last day of high school.

Blah. Blah. Blah.

I have kept underwear for the same reason even though my butt can't fit in them anymore because I am ten pounds heavier than I was the day I graduated from high school and it all went to my disproportionately large back side. (Not complaining, though. Women pay plastic surgeons thousands of dollars to wind up with a butt like mine. And I got it for free, courtesy of nature.) 

Padawan says I'm going to be a hoarder. 

Not likely since I tend to throw out things that I buy, wear twice, and then hate.

But that's kind of like a waste of money.

I should probably seek psychiatric help, but then holding on to clothes in the least of my problems when you get down to all of my other habits and thoughts that I've written in this blog....

Sunday, December 18, 2011

222: The Video Blog

Alrighty, guys. You asked for it. And here it is. You have nobody to blame for this monstrosity but yourselves, and you know it. 

Friday, December 9, 2011

You have the next week to ask.

So it's been a week now, guys, and I tallied up the votes.

The winner is...

The Q&A in which I may or may not answer your questions in my own charming way.

While wearing hot pink...because I liked that part anyway and I have the pinkest of pink dresses.

Although you guys should know Candice's idea only lost by a vote and it would have been funny because I've got a great rant about boots and some places being unable to deliver them on time or even ship them properly...and boots come in pairs. It would have been apropos. 

So. You guys now have the next week to pile on questions, or not. The more questions the longer you will have to listen to me. Think about that in addition to the fact that I the voice of a twelve year old girl. You may ask questions and I may or may not answer them.

But, for the record, you really can't ask anything personal about Padawan. He doesn't mind questions about him, but some things are just off limits. Use your better judgement in determining what that is, and if you ask one that doesn't suit...I may not answer it. A charming refusal, of course. But a not answer, just the same. 

Sunday, December 4, 2011

The Voting Begins

It's time for the voting to begin for my 222nd post special: a video blog. And all of you will regret your curiosity in the end, I promise.

The nominees are: 

Candice's "Pairs of Things" where she challenges me to talk ONLY about things that come in pairs. Little does she know I am incapable of staying on one subject for long. Not branching out will be very trying for someone like me, even though my thoughts always do come full circle.

Rev's "The Geek Whisperer" in which I would talk about the trials, tribulations, and even the advantages of living with a professional nerd. Of course, I will have to get Padawan's approval on that one if it wins because he has a very strict sense of privacy.

Nicki suggests that I do a Q and A, where I take your questions and answer them. Or refuse to answer them in a charming way, depending on the question.

The Frisky Virgin sent in an idea about doing character impressions from movies, books, or whatever. She even thinks I could put my own spin on them.

And Scott says he doesn't care what I do, but it has to be done in hot pink.

So...the choice is yours.

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Guess what?

My two hundred and twenty second post is coming up soon.

I've decided I'm going to do a video blog to celebrate the awesome triple digit, because that seems way  more exciting than what I normally do.

I don't know. Maybe you guys would find it funny to hear my thoughts as I speak them instead of reading them as I write them. Because you guys totally know I don't plan out what I write. I just type it as I think it and then I edit out the errors.

The thing is...I don't know anything about video blogs. I don' t know what I'll talk about.

Enter you guys.

With suggestions.

You guys suggest what I should blog about, and whichever you guys vote on as the best idea, I'll talk about, but let's not get carried away. There are rules. I'm not going to tell you what they are, you guys will just have to use your best judgement when making suggestions.

Um...that's it. Let the games begin.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

The Most Awesome Customer in the History of Customers Award

Every once in a great while...we have a totally awesome customer.

Customers are awesome for different reasons. Sometimes they're just good people. Sometimes they're really funny. Sometimes they stick up for you when another customer is being a jerkface.

And sometimes...they take requests.

There was a kid in today. Maybe he was nineteen or so. I dunno. I didn't ask. He was playing on the pianos, and he wasn't running through the normal stuff. No Fur Elise or Claire DeLune or Winter Wonderland. He was just...playing whatever he felt like. I thought I even heard Mad World played in there somewhere.

So I called out, "Hey, dude! Do you know the Doug Song?"

"The Doug Song?" he repeated.

"Yeah, from the Hangover!"

He grinned. "I think I can play it!"

And he did. Took him a couple of minutes to find the right key. He was playing it by ear, after all. And then I told Jazz, "Hey! He's playing it! He's playing it!"

And she said, "Well, he should sing it!"

So I called out, "Jazz says you should sing it!"

And you know what he did?

He started singing it.

What do tigers dream something word in here. 

"I really don't know all of the words..."

I laughed. "That's okay! You can just sing the 'Doug' part."


"Doug! Doug! Doug! Doug! Dougy, Dougy, Doug!"

Applause. Raver, Jazz, and I all gave a warm round of applause. I only wish I hadn't left my cell phone in my purse after lunch because I would have dearly loved to record this moment for you guys and share. 

He won The Most Awesome Customer in the History of Customers Award. 

Monday, November 21, 2011


Things have been changing at my job. Remember that efficiency expert they brought in?

She's been hired full time as a co-manager, right next to the owner's son. And she's been changing things. A lot of things. In fact, in the first three months of her reign we lost three employees.

One was my friend, Bones Buddy. He just up and quit one day, no notice. Packed his things, put his house up for sale, and moved back to South Dakota. I...haven't taken it well. Whenever I wear my brown boots or my yellow dress or my hair in pigtails or something and someone compliments me on them, I always remember the compliments he gave me for the very same things. Or when I watch a Bones episode I think of how he would comment on it. I e-mailed him two days after he left, but he didn't respond. I want to e-mail him again, but to what purpose? Maybe he wants to sever all contact.

And then, just a couple of weeks later, she changed the desk. Now, I was only working the desk Saturdays by then, and Origami and Jazz had it during the week. The perk of the job was literally doing whatever you wanted in exchange for being forced to sit in a chair for nine and a half hours a day. 

Efficiency changed that. No computers. No drawing. No painting. No crocheting. No knitting. No sewing. no reading. Absolutely nothing except answering phones, counting customers, directing and greeting people, and whatever menial tasks they can come up with to fill in the hours.

Origami hated having to sit down even with the freedom of doing whatever task she liked best. With no origami, no bracelet making, no artsy stuff...she couldn't take it. After two days of nothing she left for lunch and never came back. Not even for her last check. She had that sent to her through Jazz.

And I told Manager Man that he had better hire someone who could take Saturdays, too, because I couldn't sit at that desk and do nothing for a whole day, either.

The answer was to hire...Space Cadet.

It's not that I don't like her. I do.

But...she doesn't do her job well. I mean, obviously nobody could ever do that job as flawlessly and efficiently as I did. I brought a charm and a courtesy to the job that no one could ever hope to achieve. But every receptionist should be able to figure out how to taking a fucking message, for crying out loud.

Pardon my language, but everybody is frustrated over this. 

Coffin suggested that we "hang the bitch".

I don't understand it. When we are all with customers, when the store is crawling with people, she will sit there and page. And page. And page. And page. And with each page she says it with just a little more attitude.

The protocol has always been simple: page it twice, and if no one answers you take a message. The only time it is acceptable to keep paging and sound irritated while doing it is when you see people standing around, not helping anyone, who can answer the call and just won't do it. Or when the caller insists they want to hold rather than leave a message or call back.

Absolutely no other reason.

And she doesn't even ANSWER the phones half the time!

She's out of her seat so much that we're always having to stop helping people to answer the calls. Sometimes I'm talking to a customer and I'll hear the phone ring six times before I realize she's not at her desk and I have to pick up.

And she's not at her desk! Hello! The point of the desk is SECURITY! 

I think someone just needs to sit her down and explain to her that she has to answer the phones and take messages. Isn't that the definition of a receptionist? 

It isn't that freaking hard. Phone rings. Answer it.

Even when she IS answering the phones she always lets it ring twice. Twice. 


And I'm not the only one annoyed. I've said this. 

But I am NOT going back to do the damn job.

And she's always going to the bathroom. Now, I realize this is the one thing she can't help. I understand that pregnancy messes with your bladder and all that. But everything else? Inexcusable!

We've decided that we have to have Manager Man just...give her a light talking to. Just explaining the message and phone answering protocols. We have a receptionist so we don't have to interrupt sales to answer the phones. That's the whole effing point!

The third employee was one from our South Store who I only ever spoke to on the phone. He was nice, but he got fired. Apparently he threatened to throw a stapler at one of his coworkers. If that's a firing offense, I'm in trouble. I threaten to throw things at Dizzy at least three times a week. 

Aside from that, though, things are changing for the better. We've been remodeling the store for several weeks. The mess is getting annoying, and I hate spending an entire day fixing something only to have to change it again the next day, but it's definitely coming together. I've sustained some injuries. Scratches, bruises, panic attacks. But it will end eventually.

And really the panic attack was all Dizzy's fault because he knows I hate going up ladders and he knows not to make sudden noises or to touch me while I'm up there. And yet every time I have to go up a ladder he comes and grabs my legs and yells, "Don't fall!" which sends me into a state of hysteria.

I never go above the second rung and it's still terrifying. They really just shouldn't make me go up ladders, but it's MY department. Of course, there are lots of jobs that require someone else to go up higher, but nobody wants to do it unless they have to, and of course they can't risk me having a panic attack by making me go up higher than two rungs so when I reach that problem, and it's always inevitable, somebody else finds the time to help just long enough to the the too high job done.

I'm wondering if there is any legal way to fight being sent up the ladder at all. One step is okay. I'm good with that. Doesn't freak me out at all. Two steps? Scary. Three? Absolutely won't do it. Tried that once and somebody dropped a book behind me and I nearly fell to my death and I had to sit in the back for an hour to calm myself down before I was reasonable again.

During all of this remodeling I've realized two things: our store did not utilize space efficiently at all and our customers are absolutely unreasonable.

When we remodeled sheet music all of the old shelves were torn down and the sheet music was stacked in neat, organized columns on the floor. People complained frequently about not being able to find anything, and one woman got so frustrated when we told her it would take us a few minutes to find her book because of the remodel that she actually went to all the stacks of music and knocked them over, one by one, with her walking stick. After that nothing was organized and we just had to put it back into stacks, and never mind what instrument they were for or what genre they fell in. It took us three days to sort it all out when we got the sheet music room full of shelves.

I'm tired. I just want it to be over. And you should see the Christmas decorations they're bringing in this year. It's tacky to decorate until the day after Thanksgiving in the world of retail. (Walmart and Target are tacky about Christmas.) But this year they've decided to decorate the week of Thanksgiving. Tacky, tacky, tacky.

But whatever. It doesn't matter. I'm just glad they finally listened to me and decided to switch the front entrance to the other side of the store. 

Thursday, November 10, 2011

You have GOT to have these!

At work today I was minding my own business, checking in the Yamaha order, when Dizzy suddenly calls out, "Hey, Princess! Come here!"

"No. I'm busy."

"This is important."

"I'm busy."

B-Money, "No, seriously. Come over here."

Big sigh. Look of irritation. Specialty Withering for good measure.


Dizzy smiled. "So, I want you to find a bakery that delivers and specializes in Vodka Icing. Tomorrow is Jay Jay's birthday."

I rolled my eyes. "Jay Jay doesn't drink vodka anymore. Remember?"

B-Money said, "Oh yeah."

"What? Since when?"

"For like a year, dude. He stopped drinking vodka and he lost all of that weight."

" what does he drink?"

B-Money said, "What everybody drinks. Beer."

I smiled. "I know a recipe for Guinness Cupcakes."

Dizzy: "Oh my God, Princess. You make those and we'll love you forever."


So I came home, six pack of Guinness in hand. I have had this recipe for months, but I never had the opportunity to test it. Here was my big chance.

So I made these damn things. I poured that nasty, thick, smelly-ass beer into the bowl with the ingredients, and I poured the batter into cupcake papers, and I put them in the oven at 350 for 25 minutes.

And then I made the Vanilla Bean Frosting, extra light and fluffy because thick icing tends to overpower cake. And I beat that stuff until it peaked stiffer than...



Then came the test.

Handing off the cupcake to Padawan.

"So...what do you think?"



"That's the best damn cupcake I've had in a long time."


Then I put the icing on them (Padawan does not like any kind of frosting on his cupcakes or cakes) and topped them off with sprinkles. I'd take a picture, but I left my phone at work and I don't know where my camera is. But I can give you guys the recipe!

I'll let you know right now, they aren't sweet like traditional cupcakes. They've got less sugar, and that's what Padawan loves about them. But if you like a touch of sweetness added, the Vanilla Bean Frosting is a perfect combination.

1 (12-ounce) bottle Guinness Stout (I used Draught, but if you want thicker batter you can do Extra Stout)
1/2 cup milk
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
3 large eggs
3/4 cup sour cream
3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa (I used Nestle Cocoa, but use your favorite)
2 cups sugar
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
1. Preheat the oven to 350°F.
2. In a large mixing bowl, combine the Guinness, milk, vegetable oil, and vanilla. Beat in the eggs, one at a time. Mix in the sour cream.
3. In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the cocoa, sugar, flour, and baking soda. Gradually mix the dry ingredients into the wet Guinness mixture.
4. Butter 24 muffin tins and divide the batter among the muffin tins.
5. Bake 25 minutes, until risen and set in the middle but still soft and tender. Cool before turning out of the tins.
Vanilla Bean Buttercream
1 stick salted butter – room temperature
1 stick unsalted butter – room temperature
1/2 cup shortening
1 tablespoon Clear Vanilla extract
1 1/2 pounds confectioner’s sugar 
4 tablespoons very cold milk
Cream the butter and shortening in the bowl of an electric or stand mixer. Add the clear vanilla extract and combine well. Begin adding in the sugar and mixing thoroughly after each addition. After all of the sugar has been added and mixed thoroughly, begin adding the very cold milk… one tablespoon at a time, combining very well after each addition (mixer on medium-high to high speed) until you reach the desired consistency.

NOTE: I added an extra splash of clear vanilla to the frosting. It felt like the powdered sugar was overpowering the vanilla flavor.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Jerkface has been eclipsed.

I think Kane has decided he's been quiet for far too long. He's up to his usual tricks again.

Starting with the return of my totally awesome Pink Floyd Dark Side of the Moon earrings that have been missing for almost a year now. And you'll never guess where I found them.

No, they weren't in the dryer.

I found them, of all places, in Padawan's bedside table, buried under swim trunks he hasn't worn in two years. How my earrings got there, I have no idea. That's on his side of the bed, and I don't use it. The only explanation is Kane.

And coincidentally, the day after recovering my favorite earrings, my headphones went missing.

I don't know if I can blame Kane for that one, however, since Padawan did borrow mine because he lost his. And then I found Padawan's, in my dresser this time, and mine were gone. It could be Kane trying to annoy Padawan, who refuses to acknowledge his existence. But then why keep my headphones? I've never pretended that we don't have an obnoxious ghost with a fabulous earring and shirt addiction, and possibly an interest in music since he takes headphones as well.

I've informed Padawan he owes me new headphones. He still hasn't coughed 'em up, which means I listen to my iPod play through its speaker. It doesn't sound nearly as good through one muffled speaker as it does through my totally awesome headphones. Which were pink, just so you know.

But I think Kane isn't satisfied with just us.

Today I sat down at my desk and noticed an unusual addition to my decor. A stone. A shiny black stone that I've never seen before, sitting on my desk.

I picked it up and realized it wasn't a stone. It was some kind of high powered magnet. It did not want to let go of the metal bars that support my super awesome glass desktop.

Padawan has never seen it.

I have never seen it.

So where did it come from?

The mean part of me hopes that Kane robbed the stupid, rude, tacky people who live below us (who have surpassed even my hatred of Jerkface, and you know how much I hate him) and that it was somehow very important to them and that their lives are falling apart without the stupid thing.

The kinder part of me hopes that Kane robbed the stupid, rude, tacky people who live below us and that it only has some strong sentimental value for them and they are dreadfully depressed that it is gone.

Personally, I really hope it's the former.

One fine, windy day our not so beloved neighbor's bike was found knocked over. Padawan assumed the wind pushed it over. And it might have. You know, it was a very, very windy day. Very powerful. Could have been the wind.

Could have been Kane.

Could have been some small, fed up, green eyed, brown haired young woman who was out walking her chihuahua and happened to see his bike parked next to her's, incorrectly yet again. She could have accidentally walked too close to it and bumped it with her hip, knocking it over. Goodness knows it wouldn't have happened if he had the common decency to chain his bike up correctly. And somewhere not near her bike. Really, her bike is much too pretty and respectful to be mingling with his common Wal-Mart bargain brand contraption.

But it was probably Kane.

That's my story and I'm stickin' to it. 

Did I mention those people are tacky?

I mean, let's not mince words here. They leave their trash sitting outside of their door right when they leave in the morning, when our Office has clearly dictated that trash can only be put outside at six PM and no sooner. Also, it has to stay in the trash can. You can't just toss a trash bag outside your door filled with foul smelling things. And it has to be back inside (the trash can) by seven in the morning. 

But that's not the worst part.

The worst part isn't even their dogs, which has gotten worse. Lately they've taken to letting them bark for hours on end.

I have to tell you this. What makes them the absolute tackiest people I've ever seen is that the other day, when I happened to be out on my balcony minding my own business and not plotting the demise of their tacky snowman Christmas decoration (it's not even Thanksgiving yet!) I happened to see the dog that lives in the yard next to their's start barking at them as they were putting up Christmas lights in their bushes. (It's November!

And they had the nerve to turn around and tell the owner of the dog to, "Shut that dog up or take him inside. Don't you understand you have neighbors?"

Couldn't help myself. 

I started laughing. His audacity astounded me.

And the owner of the dog also saw the irony, because he immediately pointed out it was a bit rich for tacky man to tell him off for his dog barking for a matter of seconds in the middle of the afternoon when their dogs were barking for two hours straight just that very morning. 

Fortunately they were too busy screaming at one another to notice my laughter. But really, the situation was just too ridiculous.

And Padawan actually called in a complaint about the barking when he was trying to watch a movie and couldn't hear a damn thing because from nine thirty until eleven forty five at night those dogs barked unchecked. 

Those people are either the biggest idiots in the entire world, or they are the most selfish people in existence.

You vote. 

That being said...I think I need to go to bed. The clock says ten o'clock, but my body says it feels like eleven. And I still have to take the Choo Choo out for walkies.

And by the way, she was the cutest little pumpkin for Halloween, and she adored going trick or treating with Master Plo Koon. 

Who, by the way, was an Angry Bird for Halloween this year. It was absolutely awesome.

That is all.

Friday, October 14, 2011

They should give me a raise for not dropping an F-bomb when I found them.

You guys want to know what I do at work all day?

I spend my days looking for my shoes.

Why were my shoes glued to the ceiling?

Because I broke them on my way to work and left them on Dizzy's workbench for repair, and he didn't like the way I filled out my repair tag. So he glued my shoes to the ceiling. Took me ten minutes to find the stupid things, and another fifteen to figure out how to get them down.

They don't pay me enough for this.

Now you guys can understand my lack of writing lately. How can one write without shoes on one's feet?

The worst thing you can hear right before the roller coaster drops you.

Wouldn't you know it?

As soon as I started feeling better, my computer started acting poorly. I think it's just getting old. It's been a good computer for four years now. I think it's bound to start acting out a lot. That's what computers do.

In other news, I nearly had a heart attack yesterday, and it was Master Plo Koon that tried to kill me by frightening me to death. But that's a story that needs some explaining.

For months now, Mother has been planning to take Padawan, Clueless, Master Plo Koon, and myself on an excursion to the State Fair. Apparently the State Fair is like the most awesome thing ever and everybody needs to go at least once. I've heard lots of things about the food (deep fried food heaven is what I was told) and so I was really looking forward to going. So Mother scheduled the day for a Wednesday where Padawan, Clueless, and I were all off of work. Master Plo Koon, it was decided, could skip a day of school. (And with public educational standards being flushed down the toilet as I write this, I heartily believe he learned more in a day at the State Fair with me than he ever has in classroom.)

Well, things started off badly. First, Padawan and I overslept. She wanted us to be at her house as seven in the morning, and we didn't wake up until six thirty. Well, even doing nothing it takes me an hour to get ready in the morning, so we didn't leave until seven thirty. While I was showering Padawan checked the weather report.


Severe thunderstorms were going to be hanging over Dallas all day. State Fairs, at least in Texas, are primarily held out of doors. We tried to talk Mother into doing something else. We explained that walking around in the rain all day was not going to make for a fun family outing, but as mothers often are, she was completely set on her original plans.

When we finally got there at eight, Clueless had gone back to bed, declaring she just "couldn't leave Sausage alone for fourteen hours."

Bull. Shit.

She never bothers with that dog unless it's convenient for her. Did I mention that not only has she stopped buying him diet food, but she's feeding him the most unhealthy canned food she can find? He's gained another five pounds. Even though he's a small dog, he's officially too heavy to be allowed in our apartment. Our weight limit is forty pounds.

Well, we had planned on leaving Choo Choo there all day anyway, so she and Sausage could play together. We were expecting maintenance at our apartment to see to the ceiling fan, and I didn't want to leave her locked up in her kennel all day. So Mother decided Clueless could walk Choo Choo with Sausage that afternoon since she had opted to stay home anyway.

She took the time to leave a note explaining that Choo Choo must be walked on a leash (she runs off to find me if she's not kept on one when I'm not around) and that we'd see her later.

We drove through three hours of clouds and rain and foul weather, and we were dressed to handle foul weather, only to arrive in Dallas with a bright blue sky, a hot sun, and not a cloud in sight. Apparently it was going to be raining AROUND Dallas, but the city was completely happy.

Except we were all dressed for foul weather, not sunny weather. It was miserably hot in a long sleeved two layered shirt and blue jeans. 

But despite that I had fun. You know, ate a lot of deep fried food (deep fried cheese cake is freaking AWESOME. So is a deep fried biscuit and gravy. And deep fried frito pie. And buffalo chicken. Deep fried bubblegum, however, is so disgusting to watch someone else eat that I couldn't stomach the idea of sampling it myself.) and walked around a lot.

Then it came time to ride a roller coaster, and I agreed to ride with Master Plo Koon because I have a strong stomach and everybody else was too stuff on fried food to want to risk it.

We got seated, and took off up the incline right before the first drop.

That was when he struck.

Right before they released us down the first and biggest drop, Master Plo Koon turned to me, his face white and eyes round and looking utterly horrifed, and said, "Chanel, my bar didn't lock!"

Instant horror.

We were at the top. There was literally nothing we could do. I could hear the gears moving to release us. No one could stop the ride on time. There was no one to scream to, absolutely nothing to do except go through the ride.

"Hold on as tight as you can, use your legs to push yourself into the seat as hard as you can. I'll hold the bar."

Using one hand to support myself so I would't be jerked around, I used my other arm to hold his bar down, and I leaned on it with every ounce of strength I could muster. Each turn, dive, and twist scared me as I imagined all of the horrible ways his ten year old body would look flying through the air.

It was the longest thirty seconds of my whole entire life.

When the ride ended and was winding slowly to the dock, I lifted the locking bar to see how the operator had missed it.

It lifted three inches, then jerked to a stop.

Being so small, the tightest setting was still loose on Master Plo Koon, and when he tested it he felt it move instead of lock, and so he thought it was broken.


Needless to say, I don't think I'll ever be riding a roller coaster with him again. I have enough anxiety about them on my own. 

And by the way, it was clear when we got back that Clueless had not bothered taking Choo Choo outside as she had an accident somewhere around mid afternoon, and another one right as we pulled up because she was excited. If she had been taken outside with Sausage it wouldn't have happened. 

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Guest post!

I am sick with some god awful infectious disease that I probably picked up from one of the rotten children that come into my place of business on a daily basis and touch things they should keep their grubby, dirty, germ-infested paws off of but don't because parents today have no inclination or legal right to properly discipline their children.

So, until I feel better have a guest post from Choo Choo.

jk;adfjkjkhkeioidfkj dfkjafh afjfhagjhg adsjfjkdfshk thatokjhe adfsjh eitoigj;a kj;wahjkenktioluhkj.

We interrupt this post to apologize for Choo Choo's guest post. Apparently she's having technical difficulties typing with her paws. There will be no further guest posts from her. Thank you for your patience. 

Sunday, September 25, 2011


Guess who had reservations for the opening night of the Salvador Dali Exhibit that's in Austin at the Russell Collection?


Guess who didn't go.


And Padawan.


Reservations can be made for another day.  It's here for a while, and I'm not worried! So I missed opening what? The pieces will be as beautiful on Wednesday as they were tonight. 

Why do I want to go to this Exhibit?

Well, it's frankly not just to get Padawan exposed to art outside of the computer animated world. (Though really that's a big one. Never even went to a zoo before he went with my family, poor thing. He's never been in an art museum ever.)

Dali resides in the same compartment in my head as sharks. Really fascinating, but utterly creepy and maybe a little terrifying. Seriously. I tried reading his autobiography a couple of years ago. (Yes, I said tried and not did read.) Couldn't finish it.

I mean, aside from the obvious lack of chronological order in his random passages, it was creepy. Like, he was creepy. From childhood through adulthood, just...utterly strange. There's the thing about biting the head off of the bat that was covered in ants just to freak out his babysitter because he saw her peeing on the ground. (I don't understand the connection either, I swear it.) There's also the bit about how he was running to watch something and saw his baby sister crawling in the hallway and just decided to kick her head like a soccer ball. He didn't understand why he was in trouble. Or the way he freaked out when the woman he loved (and presumably married) had to go to the hospital and he worried and by the time he found out she was fine he was so frustrated with his worry he said he could kill her for it.

You understand why I think he's a creepy dude. But some of his's stunning. The things he could create with watercolors...some of them vibrant (though nothing you could ever call cheerful) and some of them darker and haunting...I'd love to be in a room full of Dali. (So long as Dali himself isn't hanging around. Like a shark, I like him better with the glass between us.) I don't love all of his work, of course. Some of it is just straight up sinister, screwed up, and revolting. And if that's was the reaction he wanted then I imagine he's pretty pleased with himself.

I frankly can't bring myself to read any interviews of him. I got the distinct impression he's extremely proud. Arrogant even. And a coworker did say that he said he's not the best artist of our age because he's too good to be the best artist of the age. Or something. I can't really remember what he said because I didn't read it myself and it's hard for me to remember when people talk about little things that don't particularly interest me. And interview with Dali...not interesting. I've been inside of his mind with that autobiography and I felt a little crazier for the little bit I read. (Couldn't have been more than sixty pages or so.)


To be in the room with some of my favorite pieces though...

It will be amazing. I will go.

I swear I will. 

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Oh, the party...was awesome.

You wanted to know about the party...

Have some pictures.

The only thing big enough to hold all of the beer...was the bathtub. Beers from Around the World, indeed.

Surprise! And this was before she saw the bathtub...

Jazz's birthday meant a skull cake. And there were candles that looked suspiciously like joints. I'm pleased to say there was NO illegal activity at this party, though. Everyone was legal and no illegal recreational controlled substances to speak of. 

It started out just us girls wearing crowns (mine was fabulous, by the way), but you know it's a good party when EVERYBODY winds up with a crown.

Even Padawan wore a crown after several imported beers and an order from the birthday girl.

This was a special picture: Alamo Drafthouse Gang! (You remember my thoughts on the Drafthouse, right? The only right way to see a movie!)
I did my very best, I'll have you know, to avoid the cameras. And I know there were a few cameras that caught pictures of me slinking away. But MY camera didn't get turned on me. These pictures are all from my perspective. (And just so you guys know, I did try the blueberry beer...but I didn't like it. I drank Mike's Hard Pink Lemonade.)

Monday, September 19, 2011

Music Lessons from a Four Year Old

Meet my nephews...

Little "L"

Big "L"
I can't decide if they're little terrors or absolute angels.

I suppose it depends on the day. And whether or not they're throwing themselves on the floor and screaming in the middle of the place I work because they want to play with the drums.

They can't say "Chanel" so they either call me "Neh-wee" or "Neh-wl." 

Sometimes Relly will encourage them to throw in a spiteful "Aunt" before whatever name they use.

I glower at her.

I am not Aunt anything. I'm too young to be an aunt.

I don't have toys, but they like coming over to my apartment. They liked to watch Finding Nemo, and when TV fails to entertain them properly, they find amusement in Choo Choo's toy basket. What they find so entertaining about dog toys, I have no idea. But they get hours of enjoyment out of it. 

They are scared of Choo Choo, a little bit. They like to pet her. But when she sits on their laps they scream. I think it scares them when they can feel her nails. (Fear of a five pound dog is tolerable in children. Not in my neighbor, who is still a spiteful, stupid Dog Kicking Bitch.)

We went out to lunch one day, and Uncle Padawan joined us. (I take a perverse pleasure in reminding them to call him Uncle. It makes me giggle to hear it.) Big L decided to sing his new favorite song.

"Doooo the funky lady! Doooo the funky lady!"


Well, it's hard without the tune.

Dude looks like a lady.

So I helpfully sang part of the song for him, so he could have the right words.

"Do me, do me, do me, do me,
Ooh, what a funky lady!
She like it, like it, like it, like that,
Ooh, he was a lady!
That! That! Dude looks like a lady!"

And he looked thoughtful for a moment, considering what I said, then turned to me and said, with great conviction, "No, I don't think that's right."

We couldn't help laughing. Could you keep a straight face? Of course you couldn't.

Then they (Double L) starting singing their absolute favorite of all time song. 

"My first kiss went a little this! *smooch* And twist! *smooch smooch* And twist!"

Apparently it's a Ke$ha song. I like the "ooo-wee-ooo" parts best. They're kind of catchy. Like "D-I-N-O-S-A-U-R a dinosaur! And O-L-D M-A-N you're just an old man, hittin' on me what? You need a CAT Scan!"

I don't approve of Ke$ha, of course. Most of her music is awful. But I like the catchy songs. 

Especially that one about brushing her teeth with a bottle of Jack. Cracks me up every time.

And speaking of booze...

Tomorrow night, Padawan and I are going to my friend's surprise birthday party. I'm telling you this because it's a themed party. 

Beers from Around the World. 

Don't tell anyone I said this, but somebody has seen way too many episodes of Mad Men. And it's the man I work with who happens to be throwing the party because she's his girlfriend. But don't tell anybody.

Anyway, we all got assigned countries to bring beer from. I was assigned Austria for some god-awful reason. So I traded someone else for England and then took a trip to Specs. Ever been in there? It's like a Temple of Booze. I've never see so much alcohol under one roof.

Of course, I really feel sorry for the two people who got assigned Korea and Vietnam. Specs didn't have any imported beers from either of them. Of course, there's more than one Specs in Austin (and if that doesn't tell you something about this city you should consider that the store we went to is the smallest location of several) so there's probably some at one of them. Still, I had a much easier time with England. (Didn't see any from Austria but did find some from Belgium. That's kind of similar, right?)

Good lord I am tired. I'm going to go to bed. Have to make sure I wake up on time because Clueless will be dropped off bright and early tomorrow morning to Padawan can shuttle her home. (Still no license. And by the way, it's a crime that she didn't get sent to jail and just got stuck in mandatory alcoholism classes. She should be punished, not pitied.)

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

I've been gone, but I'm back with a bang!

I have to hand it to my new neighbors underneath me: they certainly know how to treat the people they live near. The respect for the lives of everyone outside of their own little world is an example to the whole world. I strive to be as caring, considerate, and polite as the people who replaced the uptight  asshole who lived below us until a month ago.


By the way.

That was completely and utterly sarcastic. 

I may have despised the pretentious asshole who lived below us, but for all of his faults (and he had several) at least he didn't think he owned the whole damn world.

Let me just break it down: I graduated at the ripe old age of seventeen and proceeded to move into a dorm. And from the time I was dorm bound until the present day, I've had neighbors who have been...a little less than perfect from time to time. But, I have never before today had to file a formal and angry complaint against a neighbor.

They've been here one single month, and they have managed to do everything wrong. 

Starting with the fact that the man parks his bike on the bike rack in such a way that a rack that should easily hold three bikes can only hold two. And he's always using his bike to block the second bike from being able to lock up properly. This follows the fact that they NEVER leave their trash in the can like they're supposed to and it's always sitting out there in the bag, oozing something foul. Then there's the fact that when Padawan and I are laying together and haven't moved a muscle for hours, they randomly bang on their ceiling, which is our floor, like we're being too loud...IN OUR SLEEP. They even did it once while I was soaking in the bathtub because I had an intense migraine and sitting in a hot bath in darkness and utter silence helps. Having that interrupted suddenly by loud banging directly beneath when I couldn't have been making ANY FUCKING NOISE was beyond forgivable. 

But the thing that pushed me over the edge was something that never should have been a problem.

Their dogs.

They've got two beautiful boxers that I just want to pick up and hug, they're so cute. They're always wagging their tails and just begging for love and affection. My problem is not with the dogs. The dogs are adorable. They are poorly trained. How? 

Well, since you asked so nicely...

Every morning they release their dogs into their yard (they rent an apartment with a yard) at seven thirty where they stay for two hours, barking incessantly. And I do mean that. They bark from the time they leave the apartment until they are pulled back inside. Without pause. 

No, I'm a dog owner. I know that all dogs barks sometimes. It happens. But to actually take your dogs, leave them outside at ungodly hours in the morning, and to let them bark without an attempt at restraining them EVERY SINGLE MORNING?????

That's not only fucking rude, that's bad dog ownership. Dogs should be taught proper manners, and while Choo Choo still gives a little woof at the occasional passerby, she has never been left to bark outside for hours on end.

And maybe if it was just the morning routine, I really wouldn't care. But it's also the fact that they release the dogs every night AT MIDNIGHT for a similar routine. Except that when the dogs to get quiet at night, as they do sometimes, the stupid woman pulls out squeaky toys and makes goblin noises and roaring sounds and barking sounds at the dogs to get them started again! And let me just say that the sound ordinance goes into effect at ten, so egging them on outside at midnight is not only absolutely fucking rude to the nth degree, it's illegal as well.

So after a particularly hellish week I went to bed last night at ten and got woken up, as usual, at midnight by the woman and her dogs. And when I finally fell asleep, they fucking started it all over again at seven thirty, like always. But I was pissed. 

So I stuck my head out of the door and yelled, "WILL YOU BE QUIET, PLEASE?" My voice was shrill, cracking, and as polite as I could make it after a month of Band Season and sleep deprivation. They took the dogs inside immediately.

Only to let them back out ten minutes later. 

And then the man ABOVE us yelled, "Shut those damn dogs up!"

To which they yelled something beyond rude back. 

Now, I know for a fact that people have taped notes on the door of this couple. I have seen and read them myself. They've been warned plenty. And I just had enough.

So I was at the Office first thing this morning to see the Manager, and I was ready to let it all out. 

Only to hear, upon hearing that I was complaining about a neighbor, "Is this about 5108?"


"Is this about the dogs?"


"About seven thirty this morning?"


"Yeah, you're the third one this morning. I had two voicemails when I came in."

Oh. Guess I wasn't the only one completely fed up.

But I had walked all the way down there, so I let it all out. The banging. The midnight barking and egging on. The early mornings. How they'd sworn vilely at the neighbor who yelled after me. How they were just rude and disgusting and how I wanted them warned.

So. This time they got a polite note.

But next time...They get a fine and a lease violation notice.

Third time?


What do you think my reaction to this was?

Why, I went to work and demoed a really awesome recorder with which to record the next incident so that the Office employees can understand EXACTLY why this is so frustrating for us. I'm a musician, damn it. I'm laid back. I have a dog. I totally get it. And they pushed me too far. I work too hard and deal with too many children and frustrated parents all day to have to deal with being kept from sleep because two ignorant dog owners can't figure out that dogs, like children, need to be taught proper behavior. 

All I need is one slip up...

Thursday, September 1, 2011

You're about to have to take in a lot of information.

Alrighty, so to catch you guys up.

We have a new efficiency expert hired by the owner. We are no longer allowed to wear hats, shorts, or skirts above the knee. I don't see how shorts and hats interfere with efficiency, but I totally get the skirt thing. At least as far as my coworker Raver is concerned. That little rule was added after an unfortunate day when Raver wore a decent length chiffon skirt with tulle under it. It was long enough, but so stiff from the tulle that when she bent over (and she never bends any way except straight over) the skirt showed everything. I was completely horrified to look up as she bent over a box to see her black thong and her butt cheeks. Three young boys were amused, my other coworkers where nonplussed, but Bones Buddy actually had to say something to Manager Man. So, because Raver doesn't know how to bend over like a lady in a skirt, the rest of us are being punished.

As for nearly going down for something Raver did at work...we both happened to be working behind the counter one Saturday when it was busy. We both happened to intercept customers looking to drop off student model flutes for repair while talking about upgrading to YFL461 models for concert band. The difference was my customer was a man, left his flute for repair, and left with a price quote, a flute on hold, and a smile on his face. Raver's customer left with the flute needing repair, with no desire to come back, and with an experience so unpleasant she felt the need to send an e-mail complaining about the rude girl who had "helped" her. Well, Manager Man had heard me talking to someone about a 461. It's not a commonly asked for flute. Most people prefer to go inline at the pro flute level. Finding someone wanting an offset G key on a pro level solid silver flute is rare. He thought it was impossible that two different customers came in. But after he read the e-mail to me I insisted it couldn't have been me. My customer left with my card and name, he would have said my name. I also said his flute was still in for repair. And it turned out that it was Raver that had done it. The woman had been so mad she took her flute to another store for repair and bought the 461 elsewhere. That was an eighteen hundred dollar instrument we didn't get to sell. The reaction? If Raver EVER gets another customer complaint, she's fired. (Manager Man had to arrange that with the boss. He wanted to fire her immediately.)

As for me costing the store fourteen hundred dollars? A woman and her daughter came into the store with a rental return, and when I looked at the clarinet in question I was confused because it wasn't one I'd ever seen us carry, let alone rent. It was plastic, for one. But she said it was the instrument we'd given to replace her stolen wooden clarinet. I thought the store had just been cheap and replaced a nice clarinet with a plastic one. I conferred with Manager Man, who said just to take it and make a note. Turned out that woman had NEVER filed a police report for a stolen instrument and we have NEVER carried the plastic model she claimed we gave her. The instrument she kept was a fourteen hundred dollar wooden Yamaha. The instrument she gave was a five hundred dollar plastic POS. Technically, she'd rented the Yamaha long enough to buy it outright at a sale price. But we lost the ability to rerent or sell the used one we gave her.

Then there was my near drowning. Well, against my better judgement I went back to Schlitterbahn for a second attempt at family fun. It was hot, there was no rain, and the power stayed on the whole time. But Master Plo Koon decided he wanted to go in the wave pool. It's a big circular pool where great floods of water are released every so often to make waves. If you wait by the alley that lets the gushes of water out, you can ride the flood of water all the way around. I jumped into that. I'm actually a very good swimmer. Unfortunately, the kid who decided to leap in with me was not. He went under and, I'm assuming, got some water in his lungs for his troubles. When he came back up he was groping for something, anything, and found me. And my head. And he pushed MY head down so that he could stay afloat as we were both being swept away. I was surprised and got a lungful of water. Whoever said drowning is painless lied. Sucking in that water was immediately painful to my nose, my throat, and my chest. When I got myself back up the stupid fucker had his hands in my hair. I had to fight him off of me, then fight the urge to sock him in the nose. But I got out after that. 

Now I get to tell you guys about my biking experiences. Let me tell you, I've only got an eight minute bike right to work, and that includes a stop for coffee (unless the line is long), but it never fails that someone almost ALWAYS hits me. The number of people who make illegal left turns when I'm in the middle of the crosswalk is astounding! And then these bastards have the nerve, the audacity, the gall to honk at me and give me the finger! Let me just clarify something for you assholes who almost hit me: THE FUCKING RED LIGHT MEANS YOU CAN'T TURN LEFT AND THE CROSSWALK SIGN WITH THE WHITE STICKMAN FLASHING MEANS I HAVE THE FUCKING RIGHT OF WAY! The redlight ALSO means you have to YIELD TO ME when I'm crossing, even when you're turning right on a red light, because I HAVE THE RIGHT OF WAY! The funny thing about this is I don't even drive, ever, but I have a better understanding of the laws of the road than these people. 

I know you guys are only still reading because you want to find out about my head injury at this point. Am I right? Of course I am.

Well, the week before my birthday was my coworker Dizzy's birthday, and since we're good friends and I adore his fiance, Padawan and I accepted the invitation to his birthday party. Dizzy's fiance is in her third year of medical school and she's a licensed Pharmacist, but she's playful. She has a lot of silly hats and toys, a giant air puff gun among the latter. 

This is what it looks like, exactly. 

Now, in the normal way of things, these things are not in and of themselves dangerous. It literally just shoots a big puff of air into you with a slightly loud noise that, when unexpected, can make you jump. I was talking to Jelly and Fun Fiance with my back turned to Padawan and Dizzy when I heard a loud noise as I felt a puff of air hit my head. It didn't hurt, but it surprised me. I jumped and turned around and saw what caused the noise. I laughed and turned back around, warning Dizzy not to do it again. (The gun was in his hand.) 

A moment later I felt a sharp stabbing pain in the back of my head as I heard the noise of the puff gun. I felt the puff of air, too, but it I can't remember which registered first. I do remember the pain, though. Sudden, red hot and angry, my head throbbed. I screamed and clamped my hands to my head, turning to give Dizzy a verbal tongue lashing. This time, however, the gun was in Padawan's hand. 

I laughed and said, "Hey! That hurt!"

And everybody laughed and tried to figure out what exactly had hurt about it. I was trying not to cry as I kept my hands clamped to the spot that was still throbbing. And then something started to feel warm on my hands. I said, "Guys, I think I'm bleeding."

And this resulted in another round of drunken laughter followed by, "Chanel, it's an air gun. There's nothing in there to hurt you, let alone make you bleed!" 

Then I made the simple mistake of taking my hands away from my head and looking at them.

Instant tunnel vision. My eyes focused on the blood that was covering my palms and finger tips. I manged to get out one, "Oh my god!" before the hysterics and hyperventilating kicked in. Tears and sobs choked their way out between huge gasps of air. Faintly I heard Jelly turn to her husband and say, "Jesus Christ, she's going to faint! Get a pillow!"

And suddenly there was a voice, loud and controlled. "Chanel, breath in through your nose and out through your mouth. Somebody get me a wet washcloth. For god's sake, Chanel, stop looking at your hands! Somebody, put her hands down so she can't see the blood!" Something cold and wet pressed down on my head, someone pulled my face up and my hands out of my sight. I managed to start breathing through my nose and out of my mouth, slowly. The tunnel vision returned to normal vision, but I was still crying.

I looked to my left, and there was Fun Fiance, all medical student and fully trained to deal with an emergency, keeping my wound from bleeding. She said, "It's okay. I can see it. It's not deep, but it's pretty big. It's shaped like a triangle. I don't know what hit you, but something definitely got you good. No, I promise it's not deep and you don't need stitches, stop looking at me like that. Head wounds bleed a lot, but it's not dangerous. I promise."

Well, I've had stitches in my head before and I happen to know that for a head wound to need stitches there would need to be a LOT more blood than that, so I calmed down a little more and finally stopped sobbing, though I was still breathing carefully. They finally got me up to go into the bathroom, and I heard Dizzy, baffled, saying "'s an air puff gun! How do you get a bloody head wound from a puff of air?" as the other guys teasingly congratulated Padawan on "trying to get rid of her" and gave him playful shoulder punches.

Jelly helped me wipe the mascara tracks off of my face. (Well how the hell was I supposed to know I needed waterproof? I hadn't intended to cry! It was a party for crying out loud, and I was sober!) She asked, "Are you mad at Padawan for doing this?"

I looked up, surprised. "What? No! It was an accident! Besides, you just wait and see. I'm getting an ice cream out of this at the very least!"

Everybody in the other room heard me and laughed. Dizzy said, "See, dude, she's not even mad! Just buy her some ice cream and she might not even bring up in a fight six months from now!"

Of course I had to get up and shower the next day. Not fun. And brushing my hair? Even worse. Dizzy, however, had the brilliant idea of getting the camera scope and using it to show me on the big screen at work what my injury looked like the next day. 

From the picture he showed me of the wound and my own study of the offending weapon, I have decided that the following situation took place. Use the below picture for visual aide. 

On either side of the rounded barrel where the air shoots out is a spike from the lightning design. (What lightning has to do with puffs of air, I have no idea.) When Padawan attempted to shoot the air at me, he was too close, and the gun jerked forward with the release of the part that shoots forward when let go. It hammered me right in the head.

Padawan tried to act offended when we left because I cried. I quickly set him straight on that account. I was the victim of his childish pranks! 

And all I have the energy for right now.

My Shelfari Bookshelf

Shelfari: Book reviews on your book blog