Sunday, December 26, 2010

Holiday Greetings from Jabba the Hutt

This is actually a couple of weeks old, and it's now the day after Christmas, but I posted the Muppet version of "Carol of the Bells" last year, and I didn't think I should go another year without something holiday-themed, so I present this little gem, courtesy of Paul and Storm:

On a related note, I met my niece's boyfriend's nephew yesterday. He's a little 7 month-old boy named "Jaxom", who was named for the character from Anne McCaffrey's Dragonriders of Pern series. His mother was so impressed that I knew who she named her son after. I told her I was well-versed in the "classics".

Monday, December 20, 2010


Here's my first post from my new place. It's tiny, compared to my last two apartments, but it's still a decent size, with two rooms and a full bath. Kitchen facilities are limited to a microwave and refrigerator, so it looks like I'm back to frozen dinners and ramen noodles. Maybe I'll lose some weight this way.

I'm only a mile or so from where I was living before, so a lot of the local businesses I used to walk to are still at a walkable distance, albeit further away. This is good, as I really need to get back into the nail salon. With all the work of the move, boxing stuff and manhandling furniture, my nails look a fright. I've managed to break a few, so in order to keep them at a length I like, I may go acrylic. I've heard that the polish used in French and American manicures adheres to acrylic better, so that may be the way to go, at least for a time.

I won't give away my new address, but I get a chuckle every time I read the new street name. It's spelled "D-E-E-R-R-U-N-N" There's a Todd Snider song called "Beer Run" about two drunken losers who cut out of a concert to try to get beer, and get taken for a ride. The chorus involves repeating "B-double E-double R-U-N". So now I get "D-double E-double R-U-double N". ;-)

I guess you have to be here.

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Senate Votes to End "Don't Ask, Don't Tell"

I expressed some cynicism on the subject earlier this afternoon, but it seems the Senate have voted in favor of ending the military's policy of "Don't Ask, Don't Tell", the which has been used to drum more than 13,000 sailors, soldiers, airmen and marines from the services. This follows a similar vote on the same legislation in the House of Representatives. Now if our representatives will push for the same sort of voting on ENDA, everything will be peachy. Or not.

Now On Networked Blogs

In case the big box on the right side of the page wasn't a dead giveaway, I have added my blog to the NetworkedBlogs app on Facebook. Maybe I'll get a little more exposure, pick up a few more readers. Time will tell.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

That Wasn't So Hard

My last post was a lot of "Pity poor me". I'm not very good at it. I guess it was a way of psyching myself up to do what I wanted. After ten long months in drab, I'm back in my favorite form of dress. Truthfully it's not too different from the things I wear all the time. I'm wearing a sweater with a pair of jeans. Underneath I'm wearing a bra with my forms. Up top I've got a wig and full makeup on, and I've swapped out my studs for a pair of cute hoops. I snapped some photos, and the best looking of the bunch is now my profile pic.

I thought about taking a walk down to the corner store, but I looked at myself in the mirror, and I think I'll pass. I've put on a few pounds since the last time I ventured out, and I'm not sure I want to face the public in daylight in all my "glory". I tried revising my outfit, but it's a bit warmer than it was when I started today, and I don't have much that would camouflage my middle and still leave me comfortable in the outdoors. Note to self: invest in a decent waist cincher, and investigate weight loss. Either that or I start buying fat clothes. No muumuus or caftans for me, though.

Now that I think about it, I like the old profile pic better. I was a little thinner, and more at peace with myself and the world. I would change it back, but this is more honest. It's who I am at the moment, and I've got to make peace with that.

Afraid to Look at Myself

I've taken up a lot of space on this blog this year writing about not dressing up, and my ongoing struggle to cope. I'd like to think of myself as a low-maintenance woman, but the reality is that getting dressed up is a big deal. I've got to shave, not just my face but any expanse of flesh that might be exposed to the world. Then comes makeup. I don't quite have to trowel it on, but covering my beard is a chore and a half. If and when I ever get rid of it for good, I'll wear the lightest possible foundation. Until that day, I'm stuck on Dermablend and Max Factor PanStick.

For the last couple of weeks I've been meaning to get dressed up for a bit. I haven't been planning to go anywhere. I just want to wear makeup, because I haven't in so long. Not only that; I'd like to update my profile pics, both here and over on Facebook. A couple of weekends ago I took part in that awareness of child abuse thing, and replaced my FB profile pic (taken two years ago) with a thumbnail shot of Calvin and Hobbes. I meant to replace it the following week with a new photo of me, but I just couldn't motivate myself to gussy myself up. I've planned to do it three or four times since - during my mornings after work, when I'm still relatively clean-shaven, or on my nights off, but the energy just hasn't been there.

Back when I still thought of myself as a crossdresser, I didn't worry too much about why, but I thought a lot about what to tell people about myself when their questions arose. And arise they did. It took me a while to compose an answer that made sense both to myself and others. "life is hard," I said. All around us are people who can't cope, so they drink, or use drugs, or engage in all sorts of self-destructive behavior. They hurt themselves, and sometimes others. If putting on makeup and women's clothing is the worst I have to do to be able to look at myself in a mirror, then is that so bad? I didn't think so. I still don't think so, but I've become afraid.

I've had the house pretty much to myself since last week. I'm waiting for the go-ahead to move into my new place, but I haven't been able to get in touch with the owners. You'd think I'd feel free in a place by myself, but I find myself falling into myself. I got used to communal living, with friends and family close at hand, and now I have long, solitary hours with no companionship save a mismatched pair of cats. Cats are cuddly, but they're poor conversationalists.

When I finally work up the nerve, who will I see in that mirror?

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

All I Want, And Some Random Notes

Here's another post about music. Faced with a month of having to listen to holiday-themed music, I decided to knuckle down and try to enjoy some of it. Surprise! I actually like some of this stuff, and have downloaded it. The aforementioned "Greensleeved" was the first candidate. Then came some of the Vince Guaraldi Charlie Brown stuff. My job isn't set up to play classical music, so I never hear any of the Mannheim Steamroller or Trans-Siberian Orchestra material, but I decided to get some of them too. Heck, hearing them on the job reintroduced me to The Smithereens, who were a favorite in high school that I lost touch with. I'd have never figured them for recording a Christmas album, but they did. I got their "Christmas Time All Over the World", but also "House We Used to Live In" (apt with the move) and "A Girl Like You".

Imogen Heap has NOT recorded any Christmas music, at least not directly. Her "Just For Now" is remarkably apropos, though:

It's that time of year
Leave all our hopelessnesses aside
If just for a little while
tears stop right here
I know we've all had a bumpy ride.
I'm secretly on your side.
There's a neat live version here:

(I'd embed, but the business center computer at work is a little basic, running an older version of Firefox, so I don't have access to all the current tools. *SIGH*)

I'm still not installed in the new place, mostly due to lack of access to a vehicle during the day. I've got to move soon, though. The power's going to be turned off soon in the current place, and I'd hate to be stuck here while the night time temps are in the low 20s (not unusual for the season, except this is Florida).

Over the weekend Bioware released a teaser for Mass Effect 3, with delivery slated for next Xmas. I thought ME2 was dark, but the spot makes the next installment seem especially grim. I still very much want to play it.

Sara, if you're out there still, I'd very much like to chat with you. Blogger still says your profile is private, which means I can't see your email address. Mine isn't, so please feel free to drop me a line. PLEASE?!? It's lonely out here, and knowing there's someone else close by but out of reach is maddening, and I don't need any help in that area, if you know what I mean. I could really use a friend right now.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Missed Opportunity

Back in October I goofed around by posting my 10/10/10 thing, and I could have done something similar today, with it being 12/11/10, and I could've posted it at 0908. Sadly, this didn't occur to me until some hours later. Ah well...

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

All I Want for Christmas Is... Silence!

I have blogged before, and often, about the musical selections played at my job. I love some of it, hate some more and generally am indifferent to the rest of it. That all changed last Monday. I came back from being off the Sunday after Thanksgiving to find that they'd changed the channel, so to speak. Now it's Christmas music, 24/7.

I'll not waste anyone's time rehashing my dislike for religion, as that's mostly been spared. The music mix is not too different from the usual, in that it's holiday-themed music performed by a lot of the same artists who are included in the day-to-day set. It's all Christmas music, but they've somehow avoided using any of the religious carols. So, no "O Holy Night", or "Silent Night". Nothing about angels or mangers or any of that stuff. As near as I can tell, they only play the secular songs.

That means they're playing "Jingle Bells" and "Here Comes Santa Claus" and "Blue Christmas". By limiting the pool to secular songs, that reduces the available selection, so I get to hear multiple renditions of the same songs over and over again. I've heard four or five or more versions of "Blue Christmas" (but not Elvis') and "Sleigh Ride" and "Winter Wonderland". The lone religious tune I've picked out from the rest is "Carol of the Bells", which gets a pass in my book because it's an old Ukrainian tune that predates Christianity.

It's driving me insane, one song at a time. It's not all bad. They play Band Aid's "Do They Know It's Christmas?" They even play "Welcome Christmas" (that's the "Dahoo doraze" song) from How the Grinch Stole Christmas. I've heard songs by Sheryl Crow, KT Tunstall and the Dandy Warhols. Did you know that Jethro Tull recorded a Christmas album? Me neither, but their "Greensleeved" is pretty cool. Ditto for Goldfrapp's "Winter Wonderland".

They also play any song that so much as mentions the word "Christmas", whether it's really a holiday song or not. I've heard several covers of "Last Christmas" (the Wham! song). I've never thought of The Pretenders' "2000 Miles" as a holiday song, but it's in the mix. I was trying to figure out why they played Sade's "The Sweetest Taboo" until I heard the line "Every day is Christmas and every night is New Year's Eve". They've also played a few head-scratchers. I do not know what bizarre calculus inspired them to include Sting's "Love Is the Seventh Wave", but it is welcome when I hear it, a respite from the holiday monotony.

The actual holiday isn't too far off, but those nights until they turn the music back are going to be arduous.