Why wait to get tagged?

I saw this on Baby Bangs and wanted to do it, even though not technically tagged. Dedicated to my very own Superman from your Lois Lane.

1. Who is your man? Mild-mannered reporter by day...
2. How long have you been together? Almost five years.
3. How long did you date? A year and five months before he proposed, then six additional months.
4. How old is your man? Two years younger than me, thank you very much :)
5. Who eats more? I am hungry more often and eat more frequently, but you wouldn't believe the amount of pizza he can put away in a sitting!
6. Who said "I love you" first? He did...and it was very romantic the way he whispered it to me. Sighhhhhh.
7. Who is taller? He is by 3 inches, though neither of us would be ever be mistaken for basketball players!
8. Who sings better? I do -- not to toot my own horn. But for a guy who was never in choir, he can sure carry a tune.
9. Who is smarter? This is a toss-up. He has a much wider vocabulary than I, but I've got some skillz o' my own.
10. Whose temper is worse? His. But he's got a good handle on it and God's really tempered it (pardon the pun) with a natural tenderness.
11. Who does the laundry? I do most of it. When he does "our" laundry, his clothes are mysteriously the only ones washed, which always ends up being a point of "discussion."
12. Who takes out the garbage? Superman.
13. Who sleeps on the right side of the bed? Superman. I think it has to do with the fact that I do most of the driving, so we're used to our "sides" practically anywhere we are.
14. Who pays the bills? He does.
15. Who is better with the computer? Probably me, but he's not far behind, since we each sit in front of one for eight hours a day.
16. Who mows the lawn? Ahhh, one the of the great perks of apartment living...
17. Who cooks dinner? I do. And no, we don't eat the same thing for dinner. We grocery-shop like college roommates :)
18. Who drives when you are together? Me, 90% of the time. It worked out well that I love driving and he detests it.
19. Who pays when you go out? Does it matter? It all comes from the same place!
20. Who is most stubborn? Me. But don't tell anyone.
21. Who is the first to admit when they are wrong? Superman. He is an exceptionally honest and humble man.
22. Whose parents do you see the most? My mother, because we live near her, then his mother, because she doesn't live too far away. Our dads get the short end of the proverbial stick.
23. Who kissed whom first? He kissed me first, technically, though I probably would have only given it a few more minutes before planting one on him.
24. Who asked whom out? There was no official "asking out." I relentlessly flirted and pursued until he was left with no choice but to hang out with me. Initially, he was a little gun-shy about dating, but I wore him down :)
25. Who proposed? Superman -- right next to an ATM after work one night, naturally.
26. Who is more sensitive? I am (sometimes to a fault). But I think if he didn't have such tunnel vision (mentally speaking) most of the time, he'd come pretty close. Because when he gets around to figuring out something wrong's, he is vulnerable and understanding.
27. Who has more friends? Oi. Sore subject! We take some sort of morbid pleasure in fighting about who has fewer.
28. Who has more siblings? I have thrice as many, and I love 'em all.
29. Who wears the pants in the family? Superman wears the pants, but tries them on for me before making a purchase :)

I am tagging girlfriday, everyday anne and serinekat because they're my closest blogging buddies with hubbies.

The new fall season so far

Another thing I enjoy about autumn is the new crop of TV shows rolled out by anxious, over-hyping networks. There's something sort of fun about watching a new series and wondering if it will become either the next big thing or that pilot so-and-so made a few years back. Since I don't have TiVo, I can only watch one show at a time. Here's what I've checked out so far, and hopefully next week I'll be able to check out their time-slot counterparts on other networks.

"Chuck" -- I was pleasantly surprised here. It's slick with witty writing and the characters are worth investing in. I like when a show can be believable while it's being unbelievable. Will I watch again? Sure.

"Back to You" -- Who can resist another Kelsey Grammer sitcom? This one's got potential too. It's still a little bumpy, but the TV news setting almost never fails. The characters will surprise you and make you laugh.

"Life" -- This is a different kind of show than we're used to ("Band of Brothers" fans might want to tune in). I like that it's original and dramatic, and am crossing my fingers it doesn't turn into a gore/sex fest.

"The Big Bang Theory" -- Nerds must be en vogue again because here's another new show where they're the stars. This was cute, if not a little awkward. I'd have to watch it again before I decide if I really like it.

Finally, in the "it's new to me" category is another comedy from Fox, " 'Til Death." I never watched an episode of it last season because it did appeal to me in the least. I'm still not sure if I'm ready to jump onboard. But I can tell you I've laughed out loud more than once during the first two shows of the season. Although, this could be due to the fact that the starring couple's relationship resonates with me and Superman (just a little, mind you -- we're not clones by any means). What's even more amusing is that we see a little bit of ourselves in the neighbor couple as well, though they don't have much in common with the lead characters (except that they're both married).

Countdown to "The Office" season premiere: T-minus 11 hours and counting...

Post script: Do a certain mother and certain aunt know who's taking over the casino on "Las Vegas"?

How pleasant people become poops or
Zen and art of attitude maintenance

Perfectly pleasant people turn poopy when they are forced to fend off constant attacks of bitterness and complaining, which are hurled at them primarily by individuals they spend large amounts of time with through no choice of their own.

This does not mean that they themselves (the pleasant types) are destined to become bitter complainers. More often than not, genuinely pleasant people will INWARDLY retain their congeniality while OUTWARDLY shielding themselves from onslaughts of negativity. Since acknowledging each direct hit is virtually impossible, they must defend themselves with indifference (for their own protection). They thus exhibit facial expressions that could be construed as slight smiles or slight scowls, depending on the beholder. There is also a markedly lower show of patience; tempers are more easily lost than before and "sighs" come much quicker.

How do pleasant people fight the urge to become old poops? They must become psychological chameleons, able to change back and forth between defensive mode and genuine mode at a moment's notice. At work they may seem serious, succinct and polite while in the company of friends they will be at ease, conversational and --above all-- pleasant. All this must be done in concert with a consistently upbeat train of thought -- not a false perkiness, but a very real sense of optimism.

So, which am I? I like to think of myself as a sort of pleasant poop. And yes, I admit to using the word "poop" and its derivatives far too frequently and cavalierly in this entry. My apologies...

Speechless again

My mind is reeling from the Jena 6 story. I honestly feel like I'm missing something because I just don't get it -- the outcry, that is. Sorry if that's not PC. Maybe I need to read up on it more. Or if someone can enlighten me a little, I could articulate an opinion about it instead of finding myself speechless.

That's what I'm talkin' about

How silently they tumble down
And come to rest upon the ground
To lay a carpet, rich and rare,
Beneath the trees without a care,
Content to sleep, their work well done,
Colors gleaming in the sun.
At other times, they wildly fly
Until they nearly reach the sky.
Twisting, turning through the air
Till all the trees stand stark and bare.
Exhausted, drop to earth below
To wait, like children, for the snow.

~ Elsie Brady

Weekend notes, etc.

Saturday night: I wonder at the logistics of adding another boy to my family's mix. Perhaps I should be hoping for a girl when the time comes?

Sunday morning: I'm reminded of the picture of Jesus as a protective hen, Who had longed to gather a resisting Jerusalem close.

Sunday afternoon: I can't believe the Seahawks don't use either of their timeouts with 1:40 left in the tied game. It's not over yet, guys!

Sunday night: Congratulations to Terry O'Quinn! And that's the last the Emmys will see of "LOST" if it keeps premiering in January.

Monday morning: Am happy to see Denelian is back online. Here's to many brilliant posts yet to come!

Monday night: I learn from my little W that the best way to scare off a threatening buffalo is to throw a tunnel at it...and I can think of little else but my family...

"Call it a clan, call it a network, call it a tribe, call it a family.  Whatever you call it, whoever you are, you need one."
~ Jane Howard

"The family -- that dear octopus from whose tentacles we never quite escape, nor, in our inmost hearts, ever quite wish to." 
~ Dodie Smith

"What greater thing is there for human souls than to feel that they are joined for life -- to be with each other in silent unspeakable memories."
~ George Eliot

"Other things may change us, but we start and end with the family."
~ Anthony Brandt

Friday's Feast

Linda over at 2nd Cup of Coffee does this, and today it struck my fancy. Find the idea here: www.fridaysfeast.com.

Appetizer: When was the last time you visited a hospital?
A few weeks ago to visit my Mom and her new bionic knee.

Soup: On a scale of 1 to 10 with 10 being highest, how ambitious are you?
In terms of my day job? 5. In terms of my career aspirations? 11.

Salad: Make a sentence using the letters of a body part. (Example: [mouth] My other ukelele tings healthily.)
CHEEK -- Coworkers Have Enormous Eeyore Komplexes :)

Main Course: If you were to start a club, what would the subject matter be, and what would you name it?
My exclusive club would be for people who follow through on things. The name? Common Courtesy. Can you tell I've been burned today?

Dessert: What color is the carpet/flooring in your home?
Green -- my favorite -- through most of the apartment.

Man, I seem like a crankypants today, but I'm really not!

Modern-day phantom limb/Phantom of the Opera

I honestly didn't meld these two topics to make a clever post title -- it happened quite organically.

Yesterday the IT guy here at work, while trying to fix something no less, inadvertently deleted my entire e-mail inbox, as well as my trash bin and all sent items. Not good, right? Well, I should also mention that I am a saver. There were messages dating back more than THREE YEARS to my first day on the job. Yikes. Yes, I do end up completely deleting many useless e-mails, and I try to maintain my inbox with about 50 semi-important top-of-mind messages, but everything in between was neatly tucked away in my "trash" folder. WAS.

And all my sent messages lost in space. That may be the greatest loss, because sent messages come in handy when a manager or co-worker claims you never e-mailed them about subject X. Oh ya? Ta-da! Here's your proof, I rest my case. Or say you accidentally deleted a message from your friend with her new e-mail address in it. I'll just find my reply to her and the new address is recovered. Not any more.

It's difficult to explain how weird I feel about this, and no doubt many of you have had similar experiences. It is sort of like that phantom limb syndrome, where you keep looking down to touch a body part that's no longer there. Willingly purging yourself of superfluous objects feels good; having them taken from you helplessly? Ugh. I know it's not a big deal in the grand scheme of things -- they're just words, afterall. But all the same, it feels exceedingly odd and wrong.

In other more pleasant news, I finally got around to watching "The Phantom of the Opera" motion picture this week. I meant to when it was released three years ago, but inexplicably never did. If you've not had the pleasure, I highly recommend you check it out.

I'm not one of the fortunate souls who's been granted an opportunity to see the live stage production, so I won't pretend to know how it compares. But I've been a lover of the London soundtrack for years, just like a zillion other people around the world. So as far as flat-out movies go, this one is simply gorgeous. The visuals are lush. And the singing isn't bad either. Of course matching Brightman and Crawford is virtually impossible, but Rossum and Butler are suitable for a movie version. Speaking of which, the casting was quite good. Then-relative newcomers Emmy Rossum and Gerard Butler light up the screen. And I must say that despite his not being an exceptional vocalist, Butler is a formidable phantom and holds his own with a youthful injection of brooding passion. Who knew?

The story is timeless and poignant on so many levels -- beautiful and gut-wrenching. And the music in this production always amazes me. Andrew Lloyd Webber so deftly weaves the refrains of all the songs together so one can unexpectedly juxtapose itself after another, and it's the most natural thing in the world. Nothing short of genius. And thankfully his close involvement with the film shows through beside Joel Schumacher's masterful directing.

But alas, my copy of the soundtrack is nowhere to be found, so I'll have to get my fix today by singing the score to myself. Where's an angel of music when you need one?

I knew it was only a matter of time

I apologize in advance for two posts in a row about the pop music scene.

After reading a few well-written critiques of Monday night's VMAs, I was struck by the fact that every mention of Britney Spears' disastrous performance took a job at her weight. She was fat? Really? Click on this story to see a photo and read someone validly question the fat jabs at last (fair warning -- I am just linking to national news Web sites here, but they do contain photos of a scantily-clad Spears).

Two kids and five years have changed her physique. So what? I realize her appeal has always relied more on image than talent, but what went wrong with her performance the other night was not her appearance. The whole production was awful. Perhaps writers who love the idea of Britney thought her current shape added insult to lip-synching injury. Would they have railed on her physique so harshly if her song was a hit? Who's to say. I just feel bad for the teenage girls who read the stories and were told this is fat.

Music on Music Television...novel idea

I haven't really watched MTV since I was in college, and even then, it was just to check out the newest videos by my favorite artists (usually not "the kids' " favorite, unfortunately). Last night I gave into the temptation to channel surf on over and see what all the "Video Music Awards" hype was about.

First check: Britney Spears performing. Couldn't care less.

Second check: Sarah Silverman "warming up" the crowd. Would rather dip my hand in acid than watch.

Third check: Justin Timberlake accepting one of the night's awards and challenging MTV to play more music videos.

Now that's a novel idea, Justin -- though not a new one. It's been a long-running gripe of viewers everywhere that the channel's schedule is primarily made up of reality TV shows (that have little if anything to do with music, by the way).

Really, though, I'm not enough into the popular music scene to have a vested interest in what MTV shows. This is why I have a CD collection. But I do know that you have to be up before 9 a.m. or after 1 a.m. to catch a consistent showing of music videos on this channel. Isn't that just the slightest bit odd? I've figured this out after years of skimming through the entertainment channels and landing on MTV (and VH1 for that matter) just long enough to see what almost always turns out to be some configuration of a dating show.

Do you honestly think this is what viewers just CANNOT get enough of? Dating shows?

So come on, MTV and VH1 -- play some music. If not for me, at least for "the kids."

Mmmm...I can feel it

This morning was chilly -- actually chilly. Yes! Autumn is playing peek-a-boo and I am game. THIS is the most wonderful time of the year :)

Muckraker, schmuckraker

I finally sat down to read the Idaho Statesman's "investigative feature" on Sen. Larry Craig, which was published the day after news broke of his guilty plea in connection with a sex sting at a Minneapolis men's room. It was not much of a story -- and this came as no surprise to me. I am an editor and a dyed-in-the-wool stickler for journalistic ethics. So please bear with me if this topic is not your cup of tea.

The writer of the article, Statesman veteran Dan Popkey, details a long-running investigation the newspaper has poured money and manpower into. Their aim? To reveal that, despite decades of denial, Sen. Craig is in fact gay. Why? Um...because. Their mission? Not accomplished. Not even close. After interviewing about 300 people from Craig's past and present, all trails proved cold. In the end, the Statesman was scooped by Roll Call. And yet every cable news network last week featured interviews with the Statesman's managing editor and Popkey himself. Somehow the fact they were investigating the senator's sexuality at the same time we learned of his alleged homosexual behavior has linked them to the real story. Make no mistake: It does NOT link them to the real story.

Popkey got scooped. The investigation was a failure. The Statesman did nothing but re-hash the same rumors native Idahoans have been whispering since 1982, according to the article. I quickly grew tired of analysts applauding the Statesman for cautiously sitting on the story until an appropriate time. Translation: They "sat on the story" because had no real story to print, so therefore had nothing to be cautious about. Popkey's story uses anonymous sources who claim to have had "encounters" with Craig. In my estimation, unless you're Woodward and Bernstein attempting to uncover political corruption that reaches to the Oval Office, you need at least one source who is willing to go on the record.

There's too much wrong with the article to detail here, at least without boring people to tears. But find the article and read it for yourself. I might be missing something. If not, however, I would suggest the Statesman staff focus future investigations on civil corruption instead of sexual preference. True muckrakers must be turning in their graves.