Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Stupid, Beautiful, Little Face (Language NSFW)

Short blog post tonight. I just had this convo with my best friend via IM.

 Data says "Mom, Y U NO IN MAGIK BLANKIE?"
(We bought an electric blanket and the cats worship it)
BF: lol I would love an electric blanket
I produce like no body heat
I've been getting morning snuggles from Pixi*. She lets me hug and squeeze and pet her for like an hour in the morning. It's not until she gets fed up with being snorgled do I get out of bed
me: Tinycat** is a jerk and will fuck with me until I get up to feed her chubby ass
Omg last night she was having The Mad Arena of Fun Times Hour on my god damned ass
BF: hahaha
me: I was laying in bed, on my stomach, trying to fucking sleep because it was yanno 3am, and she's doing some shitfuck crazy stuff on my ass, no where else on the bed, just my god damned ass
BF: bahahaha
that's so funny
me: And when I finally get fed up, and I get out of bed to do something with her, I look down and she's all happy eyed, staring at me, with her little sock-monkey cat toy in her mouth. And she looked SO HAPPY, like this guy...
So I couldn't be mad at her. I just kissed her stupid little face, and threw the stupid sock monkey down the hall for her

Damn cats. Okay, I will go play Skyrim now, but I promise to sit down on Thursday night or Friday and blog about London. 

*Pixi is my best friend's cat
**Tinycat is our nickname for Seven-of-Nine because she's still about the size of an 8 month old kitten after 2 years. I think it might be partly poor nutrition at the shelter before we adopted her, but I don't know. 

Monday, February 27, 2012

Four Weddings, and a Weirdo

I print photos for a living. So I see all kinds of really cool, and very scary things. When I was first learning how to run rolls of film, I was handed a customer's large order and told "Go for it" and then the Lab Head went to lunch. I was excited! This was going to be great! This order would be... 15 rolls of film from the Las Vegas Porn Expo. Apparently the customer had a thing for really big, and fake boobs. Because, BOY did I see a lot of them!
There were worse things as well. We had a contract with the local police department, and I've signed several non-disclosure agreements (all of which have expired by now). I printed everything from drug bust confiscations (seriously people... if you're going to do illegal shit, don't take photos of it!) to car accidents. I had to throw up in between orders during a large animal abuse set that we printed, and had nightmares after doing rolls and rolls of film of kids on playgrounds that were taken from a sex offender.

I've also seen some truly hysterical stuff. People take photos of the absolute weirdest things. One customer had prints made of their trip to the Grand Canyon, and somehow missed that in the background of all of their family photos was this guy wearing a cape, and hot pink panties over his jeans. Seriously. They were sort of mortified when I pointed it out. Then I felt bad, because I was giggling the whole time.

I think the best though are the ones that believe they're outstanding photographers. And you'll know them, because they're the ones who will go out of their way to tell you that they are professionals. In their cases this usually means "I got paid $50 once to photograph my cousin's wedding because it was sort of a quick wedding, and there wasn't time to book a photographer, and I had just gotten a digital camera for Christmas 3 months earlier."

I can always tell the real pros from the wanna-bes. The pros never tell you they are a professional. They assume that you'll handle their photos as well as you're able, because you're a professional too. They're not printing at Walmart, or Costco for a reason. They're giving their work to you because you're not a teenager who got a 2 hour crash course in the machine; you've been doing this for years, and understand how it works.

The wanna-be will tell me all about how their process works, their artistic vision, and then warn me not to fuck it up. And I assure them that I will not. And it's true. Because they've probably already done all the damage I could ever possibly dream of doing themselves.

Over-exposed so there is no detail in any of the whites, under-exposed so badly that everything is a weird yellow when you try to lighten it.

The worst part is I have seen great stuff come through, by people who don't realise they're good at it. That always makes me sad. There is a lovely older lady who does some photos and she sells them for the benefit of a charity she works with. And she's really, really good. But she's very sweet about it. I don't think she realises how good she is.

My husband is also wonderful. But he actually closed up his wedding photography business last year and went back to school for computer systems admin after being under-sold repeatedly by these same wanna-bes that drive me so crazy.
Here's a photo from one of his weddings: 

And here's one of my photos from a wedding we shot together.

He's much better than I am, but I think we're both pretty darn good! However, I see photos come in all the time that make me angry, because someone paid their hard earned money for them, and they're just awful. But I've come to realise that photography as a profession is not respected. Anyone can buy a camera now, if they're willing to spend the money. And I can't tell you how many times I've heard "Your camera takes really great pictures!"

No. I take really great pictures, my camera is just what I use to take them.

Then there are the photos that look like they were shot by a guy with a case of the detox shakes, and edited by a five year old in Picnik . Photos like this one that I borrowed off of Wedinator, because I would hate to get in trouble for posting one of the ones I've actually printed in my lab myself.  In all fairness to this photo, it's likely that this was shot by a friend of their's and not their hired photographer, but I promise you the bargain-basement photographers that will shoot your whole wedding and reception for $300... this is usually what you'll get.

Holy handgrenades, I think this is my longest post! Perhaps I should wrap it up with a link to a video that makes me laugh. I think between my husband and I we've heard all of these come from a client's mouth.

Next entry I will tell you about how I ended up living in London, England.


Friday, February 24, 2012

Stupid Technology

I have been trying to make a new post, but nothing would load. Tonight I finally installed Firefox (I've been using Google Chrome) and now I can get to you guys again. However I'm no longer in the mood to post anything. Bleh...

I'll leave you with a day in the life of the Captain and her Number One. 

 #1: I'm a good husband. I go get you shit all the time and I totally take care of you. What would you do without me? 

Me: Yeah well I'm a good wife! I totally clean up after you all the time, and wash all your clothes. And when you're home and say "Oh I didn't get to the housework today" I just say "Okay honey, don't worry about it" and clean the house even though I worked all day. 

#1: Yeah well I drive you around, because you don't drive. And I do other stuff. 

 Me: So basically what you're saying is we ...take care of each other? Like... married people are supposed to? 

#1: *silent pause* Shut up. Why do I love you? 

Me: I win.

Thursday, February 23, 2012

I Have More Issues Than National Geographic

I have really good days, and I have bad days. And then I have REALLY bad days.

Today started out good, and feels like it's sliding into bad.

I'm reluctant to label whatever it is that I go through, but there are times where the world seems so awful, so dark, so malevolent that I feel anxiety. And I don't mean the butterflies you get before giving a speech (though those are nasty in their own right, no fooling) but deep panic. I remember one time when it hit, i became convinced I couldn't breathe. I thought I was going to die. I knew I was. It was the night before I was flying back to San Francisco from Glasgow, Scotland. I had to be on a 7am flight, which meant an stupidly early wake up. And around 10pm I became convinced I couldn't breathe. The whole thing is mostly a terrified blur to me now. I knew that it was "just a panic attack" and that I wasn't going to die from it. But I couldn't catch my breath. I remember that. The feeling like no matter how I struggled I couldn't breath in deeply.

Sometimes I feel like everyone looks at me, and hates me. Or they're laughing at me. Sometimes I think that everyone is looking at me like I'm the most ridiculous person they've ever met. They laugh behind their eyes. At the worst times I become certain that even people who I know love me, are really laughing behind their faces. It's hard. I try to make everyone happy, make everyone love me. I try so hard to be the best person I can be, so people will like me. And then I become stretched thin, exhausted, and I fail. And then the cycle starts all over again.

My husband, bless his heart, is a very patient man. He's come home to me crying, because I was convinced he was out cheating (top tip: He wasn't, and never has). And on my good days, I know he won't, he wouldn't. On my bad days...

I mean why would anyone love me, right? At least that what goes on in my head. My husband has said that the only person in the world who doesn't like me, is the one that stares at me in the mirror when I brush my teeth. And he might be right.

This is hard for me, writing this. I don't talk about it. I blow it off. I have attacks at work, and just stay in the bathroom until it's over, or if it doesn't pass quickly I will say I have a headache and go home. I used to be on medication, but I don't have health coverage, so... yeah I do what I can.

On a lighter note,(because I'm now uncomfortable and if I don't stop I will soon not have the nerve to post this) I promised I would share the conversation I had with the Husband last night.
I'm not even sure what started this "fight" mind you...

Husband: You're crazy, I hate you (laughing)
Me: No. You love me. You can't help it.
Husband: I do love you. But you're still fucking crazy.
Me: (singing) Yooou loooove me!
Husband: (sighs) I do. I probably need to see a psychologist to figure why I love you... But I do.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

I'm Totally a Grownup... I Got This

I got a phone call today, just as I was getting home from work. My nephew, who will be two in August, is in the emergency room. For reasons as yet unknown, his blood sugar is dangerously low, and they can't seem to raise it.
I had other things to say here tonight, but that seems more important. He's the best little kid you've ever seen, and so funny.
I'm an only child, and my husband has a larger family than I do (2 sisters, 1 brother) so when we got married I enthusiastically embraced the idea of having a large, and boisterous family. To my delight they enthusiastically embraced me back.
When it was announced by my brother in law and his wife that they were expecting, I think I was nearly as excited as they were. I love babies, and though I have no plans to have anymore myself, I adored the idea of having a niece or nephew to spoil the hell out of.
I think I must have looked bad when I got the call from my mother in law, because my co-worker put her hand on me.
The good news is they think that it isn't life-threatening, and the doctors are sure it will be treatable once they get the results back, so they know how to treat it.
But send good thoughts his way, and prayers too if you do that sort of thing.

Now, my original plan had been to discuss music, and food, but I think I'm just going to have ice cream and wine make some dinner and watch tv by the phone tonight instead. Because I'm totally an adult, and I got this shit. But I will leave you with a little bit of what I had intended to talk about.

Today at work I was listening to Pandora Radio, and my playlist was based off of Amanda Palmer (if you don't know who she is, listen here "In My Mind" by Amanda Palmer ) and Pandora gave me a band I had never heard of before, and I was instantly taken with them. They're just... awesome. I couldn't stop moving, tapping my toes and snapping fingers along with the song. Thankfully everyone I work with is well used to how "weird" I am, and they no longer ask questions.

So with that build up.. Here's the band.

Katzenjammer - Demon Kitty Rag

Sunday, February 19, 2012

People Are Idiots, But Wine Is Good!

I hadn't intended to post today, but I decided it would help me to get into the habit of doing it as frequently as possible.

So my sister-in-law is a pretty awesome person, who happens to have her birthday on April 1st. I want to do something really foolish for this year's April Fool's Day birthday for her, so I am paying for this man "Spandy Andy" to dance for her, and wish her a Happy Birthday and film it. I'm also asking a bunch of my crazy and creative friends to help out by making short clips wishing her a happy birthday from around the world, and then I will edit them all together into one crazy movie for her. It will, I hope, freak her out. In a good way!

I mentioned to a co-worker what I was planning, and he said "I'm really glad I'm not related to you..."

C'MON! This is a brilliant idea! Imagine knowing that someone went through all the trouble to get a dozen or more people to embarrass themselves thoroughly JUST FOR YOUR BIRTHDAY! And you don't even know them all!

I would love it, and I think she will too. I'm going to email Wil Wheaton and sweetly beg him to wish her a happy birthday too, because she would lose her damned mind if he did that. And I think he's a nice enough person to be polite if he refuses.

In other news, I worked today, and I have come to believe that we serve some of the dumbest folks at my store. I have signs on the wall in my lab that say "This way to the bathroom" with a big pointing hand graphic on them. I made them because people were always asking me where the bathroom was, and I thought it'd be nice to have them.
I should have just saved the paper. I even had one lady look DIRECTLY at the sign, and then ask me. *sigh*
But I have tomorrow off, and i have wine, so all things are good in the world of Dandelion.

It occurs to me that the meaning of Captain Dandelion may be a bit obscure, so I'll explain.
A few years ago, I was bouncing around a lot. I didn't really stay for a long period of time anywhere. I was spending a lot of time in London, England and near Glasgow, Scotland but I didn't have a home there. I was sort of an illegal immigrant, kind of. And then when I moved back to America, I didn't know where to stop. I had my Gramma's home, but I was an adult now, and wanted my own place. My son was in NC with his father, on Fort Bragg, and I had lived there before for 9 months, and knew I hated it there in the South.
I wrote a piece of prose about how I felt like a dandelion seed, being buffeted about, with no place to land. And I ended it with "Call me Captain Dandelion".

And something about that felt right. It felt like I'd landed on something that resonated with me. Ironically, not long after I wrote that I met a man I would eventually married and settle down with. And thus that brings me to my current life in Madison Wisconsin, and how I arrived here from California. Yay!

I'm also a bit fuzzy and warm after that glass of wine, which I believe is an indication of a wine deficiency, and that means I should pour myself another glass. *grins*

A toast to the new blog here.

"To absent friends, lost loves, old gods and the seasons of mists. And may each and everyone of us always give the devil his due."
~from Seasons of the Mists by Neil Gaiman

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Captain's Log - The Beginning

Alright, here goes nothing, right?

You know, I stayed awake staring at the backside of my eyelids for hours last night (and consequently did not go into work today, though I probably should have) thinking about this blog.
Well... not THIS blog, as it didn't exist. But the *idea* of this blog. I'd made one months and months ago, about my cats, and didn't do much with it.
Don't get me wrong, they're hysterical, and all 3 of my readers thought I was really funny, but there's only so much you can blog about your cats before you either become a crazy-cat-lady, or you poke your eyes out with a catnip mouse.
Also, quite honestly, I needed a place to vent. I love Wisconsin so very much, but I haven't made a huge number of friends so far, and I don't have many places where I feel it's safe to just let the crazy all hang out. The internet is AMAZING for that. I mean, it's like Wonderland: We're all mad down here.

So, I'm trying to tell myself that I will find my "Voice" eventually, and not worry about it for a bit. So I think I'll just post random crap for a while. Talk about my cats. Oh god, there I go again with the crazy cat lady stuff.
Alright, I'll just get it over with and link to the older blog (secretly I thought I was damned funny in it). http://crazyshitmycatswanttoeat.blogspot.com/
If you don't think I'm funny, just lie to me. It's better that way.

Or don't read my blog at all I suppose... That's probably how it should work. Meh.

OH! Maybe a bit of background, hmm? I'm a mom of one very stubborn teen boy, who spends the Summers and holidays with me. I'm an enthusiastic amateur photographer, and I work at a small company printing photos in their Film and Digital Lab. I also do stupid amounts of bookkeeping to help out their actual Bookkeeper, who is a super nice lady, so I pretend I enjoy it. I'm thinking about going back to school for a degree in Dental Hygiene though, since I'm weirdly obsessed with teeth, and their cleanliness. It might be a good fit! Or not! I have no idea!
I have all kinds of weird habits, most of which, it seems, are amusing to people. My husband says I'm "derpy". Which he uses to mean I'm silly, and goofy; sometimes intentionally, but mostly not.
I read a lot, mostly fantasy and sci-fi, but I enjoy most things. I'm currently reading many classics because I got a Kindle for Xmas, and they have all of the classics that have become public domain available for free download.

Bored yet? Just checking.

Well, it's midnight now, and I really DO have to go in to work tomorrow, as I have things that are due by Monday. But I enjoyed our chat (or is it just a monologue, since I'm really only talking to myself right now?) and I hope we get to know each other better.

G'night Internet!

PS because I am a crazy cat lady, and I can't help myself here's a video of my cat Seven-of-Nine grooming my husband.