Monthly Archives: September 2007

Call Me Bubbles

Call Me Bubbles

A few weeks ago, I shared with you my Glassy Eyes discovery. That finding then sparked the longest week of eyeglass research. I was printing out frames, cutting them out, holding them against my face. I freaking pulled out the marker and measured my PD (pupil distance) in front of the mirror. Yes, when I latch onto something, I take it and run. After my sixth measurement, I finally took the plunge: it was time to replace my purple DKNY eyeglasses circa 2000.

Long story short, I finally settled on these frames. Yeah, figured I’d try really hard to get what’s in: thick, plastic frames. When I showed the picture to Bubs, he was very skeptical. In fact, he had a whole list of qualms– mostly he didn’t like the idea of me measuring my own PD. I told you he’s deluxe. He’s all about getting the professionals to do it. No DIY with him.


But whatever. The glasses cost a mere $35 compared to my $250 Donna Karans. How bad could they possibly be, right? Well three weeks later, I have my new glasses. I won’t post any pictures of me wearing them, but let’s just say Bubbey’s got a new name for me now: Bubbles (from Trailer Park Boys).

For the Sake of Research

For the Sake of Research

Ok, so I must apologize for inundating your RSS reader with all 675+ Goodbers postings. I’m trying something new. You see, I spent most of the afternoon at work today reading about web stats and analytics. Turns out much of the usual collected web data is useless, inaccurate, and just plain bogus. Yeah, what a drag, because I was following the number of hits on my blog all too closely. All my tracking OCD was a total waste of time apparently.

So anyway, I came across some dude’s website: Occam’s Razor. He seems to know what he’s writing about, so I watched a couple of his talks. Former web stat expert at Intuit. He’s quite the guru. (Truthfully, I just like that he donates all the proceeds from his book to charity.) Well ok, he did have some insights. And now, I’m following his recommendation to use Google Analytics. Time for some personal research.

So this evening I set up an account with Google Analytics. I inserted some special code into my templates; hence, the entire republishing of my site. Sorry about that. Actually, I’m not sorry. You should visit my site via your browser bookmark anyway, because you know what? The freaking RSS readers cut out some cool additional features, like my cute picture slide shows, my yelp column, and interesting commenter postings? Exactly. You want to be in completely in the loop, don’t you? Might as well make Goodbers your homepage. What the heck.

The Complexity of Relationships

The Complexity of Relationships

I just wrapped week 1 at the new job, and I think I could get used to this easy-going, low-pressure work environment. Yes, to be honest, I was a bit antsy, but whatever, I’m going to just deal with my OCD and sit back and chill. The good news is, I’m slowly rebuilding my life. Had my second riding lesson on Tuesday. Amigo had a smooth walk, but he wasn’t nearly as responsive as my previous horse Buck. I’m a little impatient that my ass still slams up and down during the jogging, but as my instructor explained, it was only my second lesson. All in good time.

In other news, it’s been a quiet week for me. Bubs is on travel in Toronto. He was supposed to return this morning, but the project ran over. He’ll be back Monday night. In the meantime, I’m trying to stay busy, but I did get pretty lazy about cooking for one. I pretty much did the pasta/frozen food diet this week. I’m in the mood for sushi today. Or maybe I’ll grab some pho.

Last night, I caught up with my former coworkers Joe and Dave. That was fun. We got into this whole discussion about friendships with the opposite sex and whether they really can be platonic between heterosexuals. My feeling is you love who you love– whether that person be the same sex or the opposite sex. Similarly, with friendship, you connect with who you connect with: either things click or they don’t. Sex seems pretty irrelevant. I mean, just because I’m heterosexual doesn’t mean I want to jump every guy out there. Perhaps I am atypically asexual? I don’t know. People seem to over complicate relationships. Maybe the problem is that people just don’t know their bounds, or they don’t trust that they’ll behave appropriately (yes, there still are limits). And I suppose, given the frequency and high stats on infidelity, maybe that’s a legitimate worry. But at some point in a committed romantic relationship, I would hope there is enough trust, confidence, and security that friendships aren’t considered threats or temptations. I’m not trying to be preachy: John and I have certainly had our share of issues… but in the end, for me, it’s about trusting John and trusting myself. Love is irrational sometimes, but fear is paralyzing.

Anyway, food for thought. I just bring it up because my friend Joe is somewhat traditional. Months ago, John said he didn’t want to see Les Mis the day after seeing Beauty and the Beast. I definitely was not going to miss out on Les Mis, so I invited my flaky friend Yovanni. She took forever to confirm, so when I told Joe at work about the show, he shared my excitement, and I invited him to join me. Then he had this whole thing where he would only go on the condition that John would go. Or that beforehand, he had to meet John for a sort of hand-off, as he termed it.

I found his condition or attention to etiquette (for lack of a better term) rather ridiculous. I mean, I’m an independent person. I invited a friend to see a play. That friend happens to be male. What’s the hand-off about? Am I supposed to get permission to go out with a friend? Is John my gatekeeper? See, this is how I read all of this. And to be honest, I was a bit insulted. Like there was some inappropriateness or cloudiness that required clarification. It’s not as if I didn’t tell John I invited Joe… anyway, that was what triggered everything. Now to come clean, John did admit that he found the idea of me going to the play with Joe somewhat odd, but not enough to ask me not to go… In the end, it all worked out. Flaky friend turned up and all four of us went and had a good time.

Can’t Wait

Can’t Wait


My gal Lainey did a write-up about Ang Lee’s must-hyped film “Lust, Caution” starring Tony Leung and Tang Wei. This film is going to disturb the shit out of me with all the love, duty, sex, betrayal mind games, but I’m falling for the hype. Opens September 28. Bring on the sleepless nights! Check out the trailer.

New Job, New Revelations

New Job, New Revelations

I’ve gone through a lot of jobs, so in many ways, I consider myself an expert in workplace assessments. Hee, hee. You see, I’ve developed a mental checklist. My hypothesis is that I can determine the compatibility of a new job fairly quickly (say, within one week) based on just a few key items:

Prior to the start date
1. Is the job description and benefits information comprehensive and organized? Is HR knowledgeable?
2. Do the decision makers listen to my requests? Do they attempt to accommodate my concerns?

On the first day
3. Is my desk set up? Do they hook me up with supplies? Are the file drawers empty of other people’s crap?
3. Is my computer set up? Does it have the basic productivity software? Is my email account ready? Is my Dreamweaver/Adobe/MS software an acceptable version (i.e., within the last year or two)?
4. Are there orientation materials?
5. Do I get introduced to everyone?
6. Do they take me out to lunch?
7. Do I get the key/badge/timecard?
8. Do I get QT with my boss?
9. Does my phone work?

These are just some of the basic questions that run through my head in the beginning. And they sound pretty simple, but you would be amazed how many places don’t have this shit down on Day 1. Seriously. And maybe you think this is a silly list. That the items are frivolous. I argue otherwise: it’s all in the details. These are all clues.

And I gotta say, my newest place is doing well. They even bought me the latest version of Dreamweaver. Totally exceeded my expectation– how cool is that? And the HR/orientation stuff is so organized. Professional binders, printed dividers, the works. I’m impressed. Good sign.

My boss wasn’t able to take me out to lunch my first day, but he came and told me why. And another team person took me out. See? Classy. My boss seems pretty cool. Friendly, approachable, easy-going. Still, I know it’s early.

So the thing is, well, last night, I came across an interesting page. And now I’m all weirded out. I know, people say personal life is personal life, but to be honest, I don’t really believe that. I feel that people should be accountable for all actions, and all of it ties together. I didn’t buy the personal/professional segmentation for ex-Pres Clinton, and I’m inclined to react similarly here. Sure, I don’t have the full story, but you already know I have issues. I’ve admitted that I’m a prude about the whole concept of casual sex. Yes, when both parties consent, I know it’s their choice, blah, blah. In this case though, the two parties are on different pages. And there’s all this infidelity and deception. Huge hot buttons. And so, I can’t help but feel icky. I mean, if all is true, a jerk is a jerk, right? You can’t be a jerk at home and a sincere person at work, can you? Fuck. I don’t know. I mean, I think about who I am at work and who I am at home. Yes, I cuss like a sailor at home and with friends. And I throw a massive temper tantrum/cussfest when my parents/brother piss the crap out of me… does that mean I’m also guilty of duplicity? I don’t know. I just feel like honesty is really important–probably most important in your personal relationships. And if your partner can’t/shouldn’t trust you, how can other people? Sigh. It’s late now, and I’m getting delirious. Need to sleep on this. I think I’m going to have a problem with the icky feeling. I was on an early roll. Too good to be true?

Swimming with Tortuga

Swimming with Tortuga

Bubs and I returned from Hawaii late last week. We had a relaxing time despite spending far too much time in the damn car. We basically drove the entire perimeter of the Big Island. And just a side note: never again will we use Alamo rental car. Jesus Christ! We’re fed up with their deceptive tactics at their self check-in kiosks. Complete bullshit with their crap interface that pre-selects ALL the options (i.e. added costs) even though I had already refused every single one of them at the time of booking. So freaking annoying. Plus, I had booked a zippy compact. When we arrived, apparently all of them were rented already (what was the point of the reservation then??). We ended up with a full-size grampa car: the Chevy Impala. Yup, a total old geezer boat of a car.

But back to the trip. Despite these minor irritations, the vacay was a pleasant getaway. We even met up and hung with my former FMF web buds. How random was that? We hadn’t seen each other in years.

Overall, our trip consisted of checking out several beaches (white sand and black sand), although “beach” is somewhat of a stretch– the shores are more like narrow strips of sand but whatever. We also hiked in the Volcano National Park (unfortunately, no lava sightings), stayed at a really cool B&B in Volcano Village, toured some beautiful waterfalls north of Hilo, and snorkeled the last day in resort lagoons. The Priceline booking actually worked out well: we got a decent unit at the Big Island Disney (aka the Hilton compound in Waikoloa). Not too shabby. And the coolest part of the trip? John and I swam with 4 sea turtles in the lagoon! I almost ran into one, and man, those guys are surprisingly fast! A few times I looked away for just a couple seconds, and when I looked back, they were gone. Snorkeling was awesome! Especially for crappy swimmers like Bubs and me, the shallow waters of the lagoon were perfect.

I wrote a ton of Yelp reviews for Hawaii– yes, I wrote them WHILE on vacation. What else was I to do when Bubbey knocked out at 9pm every night? Shrug.

On our flight home, John and I hoped that time had abated the skunk stench. We got our answer as soon as the front door swung open, and that god-awful air swooshed its way into the pits of our lungs. Ugh! Damn bastard skunk! Fucking idiot dogs.

I know, bad attitude. But hey, it only lasted a minute: my babies were excited to see us! In the end, who could resist their cute wet noses and happy tails? Yeah, I got sucked in pretty easily. Was definitely good to be home.

Playing my Game: Deluxe on the Cheap

Playing my Game: Deluxe on the Cheap

Just got back from a deep tissue massage. Three weeks of unemployment and my neck/back is still all fucked up. I don’t understand it, really. Must be the way I sleep. Or too much time with lappie. I don’t know. What I do know is that Brittany has THE strongest fingers on Earth, and she blasts the living beJesus out of the knots in my back. So painful and yet so necessary. I’m hooked, and this shit is getting scheduled as a biweekly expense.

That means, I’m back to playing my game. Ok fine, I never stopped playing my game but hey, my activities are adding up: massages, trips, horseback riding… I ain’t cheap. Time to pull out all the stops. First step? The cable bill.

Yup. That frickin’ invoice is insane. $150/month for unlimited hours of couch vegetation. Of course, we’re not ready just yet to pull the plug on HBO, so I called Comcast to assess the deal. First of all, I want this broken shit fixed: I’m tired of the damn DVR recording shows I didn’t tell it to record. Second, the menu is all messed up. It says my show comes on Fridays at 2pm, but does it? Nope. Fuckers. Third, the rates are over-the-top. Sure, I get hundreds of channels but really, I only want five. Do they give me that option? Nope.

Anyway, I got the menu mismatch fixed. As for the bill, it just so happens Comcast is running a cable promo for existing customers. Plus, I found another promo for the broadband. End result? $95/month. Serious savings. Aw yeah. Now shouldn’t they tell all their customers about these promos?

Oh, I almost forgot. Some of my latest cheapie discoveries.
Glassy Eyes–Shattering the Eyeglasses Scam
Frames Direct (for crazy cheap Acuvue contact lenses)
Cartridge World
Visa discounts

Double Monster Stinkbombs

Double Monster Stinkbombs

You know, Bubs and I were having a nice night out yesterday. I’d completed my first riding lesson (which went very well despite the certain bruising I will get on my bum), and we had just finished scarfing down some rolls at Sushi Monster. Life was good. We had the pups along for the ride, and we were about ready to call it a night.

Usually, I leave the pups off leash from the car to the house. Well yesterday, Martin caught the scent of a critter. Remy was practically on our doorstep when she heard Martin chasing something along the community fence. She ran to join him, and for the next several seconds, they were hot on the trail of this mystery beast. They were deep in the brush, totally ignoring my calls to come. Finally, they cornered the animal. What the hell was it?

Suddenly, Martin started thrashing his head left and right. I thought he’d caught something in his mouth. Then it appeared. Two feet before me: a skunk with it’s tail raised. By then the damaged had already been done. Martin started rubbing around in the lawn like crazy. Remy continued to pursue, and then she too got sprayed. Both dogs, totally blasted. In the face.

Have you ever smelled a skunk? Jesus fucking Christ! Our initial reaction was to hose them down outside. But, to get to our patio, they have to go through the house. Well, la dee da. On their fucking way to the yard, both my angels rubbed themselves silly on our carpets. Blah, blah, I hosed them down and dried upstairs. Meanwhile, John started researching the de-skunking process. Hydrogen peroxide, baking soda, liquid soap. Fuck, fuck, check. He ran out to the store. Somehow the smell had gotten on him too, because people at the store gave him weird looks. Twenty minutes later, he was back. We did the dip. Seemed to work some. By now, the entire house was bombed. I wonder if this will be a natural fumigant (?) for our ant problem… Anyway, we didn’t sleep well at all. John insists he awoke with a sore throat. Such a drama queen.

So this morning, John walked into work. A few minutes later, he called asking me to pick him up. He stunk, and his coworkers told him to go home. Are you fucking kidding me? I mean, yes it stinks but it’s not as if it smells like a sewage plant or anything…

Anyway, I headed to the pet store where I picked up some Nature’s Miracle. I’ve always heard great things about their products. Some secret non-toxic sauce with enzymes. I need to buy their stock. Came home, poured that stuff into a spray bottle and started spraying away. Whole house is sprayed. I’m heading over to Fonda’s for lunch, and then when I return, that’ll be the true test. Meanwhile, Bubs is off to Starbucks or somewhere to get some work done. He’s got a customer meeting tomorrow– I hope he’ll be fully de-skunked by then.

Just Call Me Bo

Just Call Me Bo

Bo Jackson, of course. Well that’s what Bubs calls me anyway following a weekend of intense cross-training. Ok, total overstatement, but for sloths like us, this was definitely activity level high: swimming, rollerblading, walking, hiking, gardening/yard work… We went to REI, and I finally got that presta to schraeder valve adaptor for my bike tire. Dusted off the cobwebs, pumped air into the tires, oiled the gears. I also tended to my worm bin, which is doing well. The worms still need to kick it to high gear, but I had plenty of soil amendment for planting our herbs and seeds.

As usual, I also did my daily cleaning, laundry, and cooking. It’s practically routine now. I was complaining to Bubbey last night that I haven’t eaten out since I quit my job last month. That’s right: three weeks and counting. Thai chicken wraps, homemade egg mcmuffins, turkey sandwiches, beef and onions, chicken and vegetables, lime-cilantro chicken, ground turkey sloppy joes, pork chops, pasta, heirloom tomato salads… I am craving Sushi Monster and Windy City Pizza like a frickin’ dope fiend.

Frankly, the exercising (especially the swimming) is making me eat like a pig. That plus it’s hormone week. Here’s what I bought at the supermarket yesterday: chocolate chip muffins, tres leches cake, AND key lime pie. And I consumed 2 of the 3 last night. See? Full-on attack. Ah well, might as well plump up for my trip to Hawaii!! That’s right, John and I are headed to the Big Island this Saturday for five nights. Last week, United sent out an email blast saying there were open seats from SFO-KOA (Kona). Like a total sucker, I clicked through, popped in our data, and minutes later, we were booked for Hawaii. Luckily, we were able to use frequent flyer miles. Aw yeah!

So last week was all about travel planning and research: car, hotel, B&B, kayak place, blah, blah. I know, I am totally obsessive compulsive, so my research is way too time-consuming. But hey, time is something I have these days, so I might as well.

The plan is to stick on the Big Island: two nights on the Kona beach side south of the resort area, two nights tucked away in the Volcano National Park, and the final night back to Kona but in the resort area. This is my first time testing out Priceline… I know, many people have gone on and on about Priceline. Me? In the past, I searched it for cars and hotels, but the rates were higher than booking directly. Plus, they offer no cancellation/refunds. This time I did the “name your price” for the hotel, so we’ll see how that pans out.

In other news, I checked out a couple riding stables in Portola Valley. I’m finally biting the bullet: first lesson starts tonight. Everyone knows I’m obsessed with dogs now, but when I was a kid, my first love was with horses. I must’ve read the horses section of the World Book Encyclopedia a million times. Knew all about the grooming and tack and Western vs. English styles.

I am really psyched, because the ranch is near my new place of employment. Plus, there are a bunch of horse trails in the open spaces. Wish me luck. I hope I’m a fast learner. One day, I’ll ride like a true cowgirl. Sigh.

I’ve already started pricing out my gear. See how my OCD spreads into everything I do? John says I should be a Consumer Reports researcher. I think he’s glad my job starts soon, because he says he doesn’t like being micromanaged by the task master at home. Hey, I’m just doing my duty: we’re only 31 years old, James and Jen really showed us up. Seriously, we need to get our shit in gear.

Speaking of gear, check out the dogs sportin’ their hiking backpack. That’s right, I’m putting them to work! They can carry their own damn water!