Saturday, February 28, 2009

This Post Absolutely Did Not Happen

Remember my customer friend David? The one who busted me on the pink thong post?

We set a date to go shooting this week at Dallas. And he wrote to me in an e-mail, and I quote, “Oh, and one other thing, Janie. None of this goes into your blog.”

So, it didn’t.

Thursday, February 26, 2009

I Want A New Drug

Thursday – meet with customers
Thursday night – possibly meet with Jilly and that man she loves.
Friday morning – meet with customers
Friday afternoon – “Shoot For a Cause” sporting clay shoot, Dallas Gun Club
Friday night – Wedding Shower Host/Hostess BBQ
Saturday dawn – Be at Decatur to work with Zanna the Wonder Pup (Wonder if she’ll remember us?)
Saturday 2 p.m. – Couple’s Wedding Shower, Grapevine, Tx
Saturday 5 p.m. – Morph from shower to dinner and drinks. Get ThatManILove drunk and kick him out at the hotel.
Saturday 7 p.m. – hopefully sneak away to the Blogger Meet in Dallas (no promises)!
Sunday a.m. – head back to Decatur to pick up Zanna and head home to Midland America
I need a nap. And I’ve not even started.

Monday, February 23, 2009

Q&A from Texas Red!

Texas Red flung an interview upon me. So, here goes the answers to her questions. And man. She went a little deeper than the most!

Her questions (and my answers) are as follows:

(1) When and why did you join the oilfield industry? Well. Hmmm. I didn’t join with any set purpose – kind of hard to believe now, huh? Oil and gas is a major industry in West Texas. I was raised an oilfield brat. And when a job came available as an office manager, I took the job. My son was 2 years old…so that was 26 years ago! My, how time flies when you’re having fun! I soon was promoted to sales, and promoted, and promoted and here I is. Even in it’s worst cyclical nightmare, I love the oilfield. It’s never boring, always changing, and full of awesome people.

(2) What does your typical weekday look like---posting on the blog; lots of phone calls; meetings; travel in the field, etc.? Mondays, I drop breakfast by a customer’s office by 7 a.m., then spend most of the morning on conference calls with my staff and fellow coworkers…starting at 9am, it’s the sales call; morphing into the 10 am accounts receivable call. Meanwhile, my friend Daniel comes and steals LaToya the Sequoia for her weekly carwash. Some Mondays, I’ll then go meet another oilfield salesperson at Starbucks to trade opportunities and information (that’s how this patch works, it’s all about networking.) At 11:30, I’ll be at a customer’s office to pick them up for lunch. After lunch, I spend most of the afternoon collecting invoices, fielding calls from consultants, making sales appointments for the rest of the week, and making sales calls. I leave the office around 6-6:30 p.m., and head to the house to free Zack the WonderDog from the confines of the backyard. Then we grab something to eat, do some laundry, and if I’m lucky, I’ll spend time reading blogs. And every once in a while, writing something of content and purpose. If I'm really motivated, I'll post ahead a couple of days. Tuesdays look totally different, but that’ll save for another Q&A session, right?

(3) What would you recommend for non-hunters trying to learn about/appreciate the sport? Go with someone! Tag along. Observe the hunter, preparing, planning. A hunter is patience personified. Watch the dogs work – it is a fine dance, one that becomes a finely executed ballet when the hunter works with his dog. It's beautiful. Learn to shoot, and connect with times of old – when hunting was an absolute must, in order to live. Hunting gets you “out” – out in the open, sunshine, cold, whatever. Know that it’s a glorious thing to be outside, in the wild, with the wild, and watching a fine dog do his work to his best ability. Watch TV shows. Learn about whichever hunting sport most intrigues you, and go to it! There are classes and hunters all around you, I promise. They may be quiet, but they’re there. And almost every hunter I’ve know has an excellence about them…a love for wildlife, and for the cycle of life. You’ll see. And you’re welcome to go with me, anytime. Any of y’all are welcome to go. Just tell me you want to, and it’ll be A. Done. Deal.

(4) What do you love most about West Texas? Lord, girl. The sunsets. The people. The weather and its inherent insanity. The oilfield. The farmers. Stock shows and rodeos. Blue skies. Pumpjacks on the horizon. Oil rigs, lit up like Christmas trees, when I'm landing on the flight from anywhere at Midland International Airport. But mostly, it's the people I love. The people are great, no matter their race, religion, or gender. I love the “try” in people…they just will not give up, and they are bound and determined to make their way in this beautiful desert land that is the frontier of West Texas. I’m one of them. There are a million awesome things about West Texas. Balmorhea. Goldsmith. Ft. Davis. Alpine. Midland. Stanton. Big Spring. Odessa. Forsan. Kermit. Coahoma. Each of them has their own drawing points. Okay, enough about the towns. But wait, one more thing about the West Texas towns…the best thing is they are all great places to raise your children. How about the colleges? Did you know most every child that graduates in Midland/Odessa has the chance to go to college for free with a little community service? Are we blessed, or what? Back to what I love most about West Texas, I cannot forget Scenic Mountain in Big Spring…I have cried my heart out on that mountain. When I was younger, and lived there…and after I moved to Midland, I would drive over. And when I came to the Lord, cried out, screamed, ranted to Him many times on Scenic Mountain. And He heard my cries. And then, I worshipped. It’s a special place to me., and to many others, as well. Go pay your $2 and check it out. There’s something awesome about that State Park...

(5) What was your motivation for starting this blog? I read blogs for about a year. And commented. Before that, I wrote stories about my life experiences, i.e., vacations with the boys, a work experience, something that happened with my mom, and would send these stories via e-mail to my customers. They loved them! They encouraged me to write, to try to publish. And though I’ve not yet gone that far, I won’t forget my first try at blogging. I loved, and love, the comraderie and friends I’ve made through blogging. If I were to stop writing tomorrow, I’d still stay in touch with my blog buddies. You and they are all part of my family now, if that makes any sense. So, in essence, I started for myself – but I stay, because of y’all.

Hope you enjoyed that. If anyone else has any questions, please feel free to contact me. Like I said before, "I ain'ta skeered!" You may be bored to death, but I'll try to answer.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Zanna's Coming Home!

I’m still here.

I’ve been reading your blogs and sometimes commenting. I’ll be back soon, just bear with me.
It’s been a busy week, and ThatManILove’s been stuck on location 24/7 again. He’s home now, and we’re all snoozing on the couch and/or watching TV. All of the “we” being TMIL, Zack the Wonderdog, and myself.

Picture this. I’m shoved up in one corner, and TMIL’s shoved into the other. Zack? You guessed it. He’s all stretched out long-ways, head on my lap. The boy’s got it made…until next Sunday, when Zanna The WonderPup graduates from hunting school and comes home to tell the Zackmeister all about it.

And then? It will be a whole new day.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Baby's Coming Home...

ThatManILove came back to West Texas sometime around the first week of January. And went straight back out to work. I’ve actually seen him very little since Christmas. He’s been on a job where it was best that he stay at the drilling rig, where he has a trailer.

Which is okay. At least he’s within a couple of hours of home. And he has spent one weekend at home (Valentine’s!)…but mostly, he was getting caught up on rest. Then, we had to put one vehicle in the shop, and go get a rental car. Which he quickly loaded up with all the stuff out of his truck. And that which he didn’t load up, came into the front door of the house. And that’s as far as it got.

Yesterday morning, he was leaving the house, heading to another job, and he grabbed me for a quick kiss.

TMIL: Baby, Daddy’s coming home tonight. You know I’m like living out of a suitcase still, right? I’ve not even unpacked.

Janie: I know.

TMIL: No, really. I haven’t even slowed down enough to settle in since I got back from Pennsylvania.

Janie: You don’t have to tell me, dude! I know, babe.

TMIL: I don’t think you understand, honey. I need to reclaim my house. Kick Zack The Wonderdog out of my side of the bed. Unpack my clothes. I’ve really not been home, yet. And I miss my Zanna Montana Wonder Pup. And...

Janie: (I gotta stop him before he revs it up into a full out whine.) Honey. If anybody knows you’re not home, it’s me. (as I look pointedly around at the cartons of papers, steeltoe boots, suitcases, stuff…strewn…everywhere! And I’m not allowed to touch it - because God forbid I get it out.of.order!)

TMIL: Oh. Yeah. I…guess you do know I’m not home. Okay, honey. I'll see you tonight! Have a great day!

Isn’t he cute? He cracks me up.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Energy Update: That's Made from Oil? No Way!!

You know, the energy industry is either boom or bust, feast or famine. I’ve been doing what I do for 25 years, and I don’t think we’ve had a time when we could just “cruise.” To top it off, mainstream media hates the oil and gas industry. All they can talk about is the price of a gallon of gas...something that is regulated by many different things. Sometimes, it’s wearing to be in a field that is always in the negative limelight. 

I go places (outside the oilfield), and people ask what I do. When I tell them, they frown. And then, tell me, “You are EVIL.” I’m always nice, but inside, I want to scream, “Do you know you really can’t live well without us?” So, I decided I’d show you a little bit about my industry. It is, after all, an industry that I dearly love. And who knows, maybe you'll see it a little differently after today.

Way past the basics of energy for your house, and gas for your vehicle (car enamel, dashboards, antifreeze, safety glass for that front window, additives, oil, tires and fan belts, etc.), there are some of the menial things essential to living well that you utilize every day... and they all are derived in some form or fashion from the oil and gas industry.

Got an Ipod ? The casing is plastic. Plastic is made from...wait for it...petroleum.
What about that laptop or desktop? Sweet. Oilfield, baby.
Cameras for those great picture moments? For sure, oil.
Play a guitar? What makes up your strings? Oil. Oh, yeah, baby, sing it. Right through those speakers. That, by the way, are also made from a petroleum product.

Wear makeup? Most makeup has a petroleum base.
Perfume? Eyeglasses? Even your soft contact lenses? Oil, baby.
Seal it with a kiss...because your favorite lipstick probably is made from petroleum.
Need cold cream to take that lipstick off? Thank the oilfield.
How about nail polish? Oil. Don’t like the color, need nail polish remover? Oil.

Does your kiddo draw with crayons? Yup. Oilfield.
Play with Legos? Oilfield. Model cars, trains, planes? Oil and gas, baby.
Baby dolls, trucks, trikes and bikes? Oil.
Huggies? Luvs? Passies? Made from help you take care of that precious baby. And when you put him or her in that life-saving carseat? Rest assured, it’s made from Oil.

Are all your clothes white? Or that unbleached fabric? Because if they have any color to them at all, the dye has some petroleum product in it. Speaking of clothes, the detergent you wash them with - is a petroleum product.
Go fishing? Fishing rods, line, nets, boots, lures, life jackets, oars. Cooler. Water skis. Wakeboards. Tow rope. Fishing BOAT, for God’s sake. All petroleum based.
Shower curtain? Shampoo? Hand Lotion? Oil and gas. Again.

How about that cellphone? Coffeemaker? Those cool little appliances that help you make it through the day, from drying your hair to making a grilled cheese? And do you play those old LPs or CD’s throughout the day? All petroleum based.
Scotch Tape? Electrical tape? Duct tape? Glue? Paint brushes? Paint rollers?
Bicycle/motorcycle helmets? Trash bags? All that, and more are made from oil.

Do you use a toilet seat? Yeah. Seriously. You’re sitting on oil, baby.
How about those credit/debit cards? P.l.a.s.t.i.c. - made from o.i.l.

Are you a golfer? You couldn’t be without those little white balls! Petroleum. Shooter? Parts of your gun are made from oil. Tennis player? Rugby? Any sport known to man? I bet the oil and gas industry has some part in it.

Wax your floor? Yup. Is it linoleum? Yup again. Use a mop? Burn a candle? Oil.
How about when you write a check? Use a ballpoint pen? Oil.

What if you fall and get a booboo? Need a bandage? Oh, yeah, honey, it’ll get better with oil. Are you diabetic and need insulin injections? The syringes...are made from oil.
Take antihistamines? Aspirin? Cortisone? Wear dentures? Use a toothbrush, comb, brush, hair curlers? Glycerin, insect repellant? Gotcha. All made from Oil.

Anyone been in the hospital lately? The shunt they put in your arm to start an IV---oilfield. The Christmas tree contraption they add to that so you can get 4 different meds by 4 different delivery systems – made from oil, and the technology came from the oilpatch.

And what about the very process of running a camera into an artery? That process originated in the oilfield, as well, if I’m not mistaken. These and numerous other medical advances were fueled by the injection of oilfield workers into another field, bringing their knowledge and can-do with them.

I could go on and on, forever. But I’ll leave you with this: When your future’s so bright you gotta wear shades...remember this: you wouldn’t be sporting that badass bling without the oil and gas industry. So next time you see your favorite oilfield worker, don’t trash them. Give them a hug.

And maybe even a pair of those bling bling shades. © 2009 Janie Snelson

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Gourmet Dinner - a la Super Suppers in Midland!

Do you have a SuperSuppers in your town? If not, open a franchise. They are AMAZING. We have one in Midland, and due to mi vida loca schedule, I frequent them…frequently! And I'm never disappointed.

Today, ThatManILove and I are going to see the movie “New In Town”. When we return to our humble abode, awaiting us in the oven will be Cranberry Pork Tenderloin. It will be accompanied by Baby Baked Potatoes, a fresh Garden Salad, and (oh, Lord, help me!) a Chocolate Cobbler. All compliments of our local Super Suppers.

I’ll let you know how everything is…I promise. Right after I awaken from my carb and sugar induced coma. Yummmmmmm.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

How Was Your Day?

ThatManILove finally came home from the rig last night for the first time in two weeks. Today, we went to eat breakfast, then to Starbucks, the mailbox, the movie and by Mom’s to give her the Valentine’s present. And voila, it was time to take Zack the Wonder Dog for his run.

Then, we ordered Outback takeaway crab legs and steak, and now we’re vegging out on the couch , under a furry blanket, watching Jennifer Aniston and Vince Vaughn in “The Breakup”. Yummy, quiet Valentine’s Day. There’s nothing better!

What did you do for Valentine’s Day? Tell all, because inquiring minds want to know!

Friday, February 13, 2009

Six and Six Equals Six

Don't think I've quit commenting...I've been in The Mile High City working and haven't had much computer time.  I'll catch up this weekend!  Please bear with me...

That sweet little Texas Red laid a meme on me. Since I can’t remember what it’s called, I guess I’ll name it Six and Six. Oh, yeah. And Happy Friday the 13th if you read today, and Happy Valentines Day if you read on the 14th!

Six Characteristics That Are Important To Me:

1. Sense of Humor – You almost have to have one to hang with me. How else could you put up with my smart-assed-ness (is that a word?)
2. Diligence – I believe you gotta do your work, and do it with excellence.
3. Lover of People – I believe we’re put here to love on people, in all ways. Isn’t that what the Beatles sang? Love is all we need!
4. Having a Heart to Give - there’s always someone out there less fortunate than yourself.
5. Positive Attitude – you gotta keep going, do not weaken! Sometimes ThatManILove will waken in the morning and take one look at me, and say, “Baby, please. No cheerleading this morning.” But, really, he loves it!
6. Truth - The truth is always very important to me.

Six Things I Can't Tolerate:

1. Meanness – Why ever would anyone want to be mean?
2. Cockiness – usually, it’s based on insecurity.
3. Fear – it’s so often unfounded, yet I find myself fighting it sometimes.
4. "But" (Nothing helpful comes after this phrase.)
5. Anger that’s not been dealt with in people.
6. A Hard Heart – People get stuck on something, and they won’t budge – even to their detriment. Makes me crazy.

I’m supposed to nominate 6 blogs for this award, but you know I don’t really play games by the rules! So, if you want to play, please knock yourself out. Link back to me so I can see, and I’ll give you some linky love, too!

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Happy Anniversary!

Today is my 1 year anniversary at my new job. It’s been quite a year. Lots of up, and then more recently, a down.

I’m flying to Denver right now, and tried to catch up on writing a little. As I was going through my files, I found my job offers from my present company. And I started laughing.

When this company offered me a job, I turned it down flat. They came back, offered again. (They had been talking to me for some months.) Finally, on the third offer, I decided to accept. And, then I realized…they had not converted the offer to a pdf file.

I could not resist. You guessed it…I jacked with the offer. To a huge degree of excess. I added several zeros onto every figure, and upped my vacation to 25 weeks a year, added some other perks. I signed the offer, converted it to a pdf, and sent it to my boss, with a quick e-mail: “Here it is finally! Glad we agreed and I look forward to working with you. Please forward to HR asap for processing so I might give notice.”

He did.

The next day, HR called him. And he called me.

Janie, I think we may have made a mistake on the offer letter.

Seriously? Want to retract it? I’m good with that.

No! We want you to go to work with us, but I think HR messed up when they typed it up..there are some typos. HR called me and they’re all upset.

I think he was having a heart attack. I had to confess.

Dude. It’s a rule, though most likely unwritten. Documents such as that need to be in read only form or pdf form so people can’t change them.

He cracked up. HR thought it was funny. The partners of the company found it hilarious.

The firm now pdf’s…everything.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

And Emily Post Turns Over In Her Grave

Saturday night I went to eat with family friends. These friends have two adorable children, a girl age 7(I’ll call her Belle) and a boy age 1 ½(I’ll call him Crash). These kids are seriously funny. Belle is elegant, prissy, but not afraid to get dirty, already a heck of a hunter as well as a serious basketball player. Crash is all boy, but flirty and funny, too. Both kiddos are sweet, smart as whips and function well around adults.

We’re through eating, visiting, and all of a sudden, Crash sits up straight in his high chair. He has this look of surprise on his face, says something (we’re not sure what) and points to his bottom. We laugh, and so does Crash.

Mom: Hey, Crash. Need to go to the bathroom?

Crash shakes his head no, and goes on playing, sticking a chopstick into one of those square pretzels, then popping the pretzel into his mouth. He’s pretty dang good at it.

The conversation quickly morphs to how loud Crash’s burps are. Belle is avidly describing just how gross her little brother can get, all the while laughing. She laughs so hard, we all laugh. And then we hear it. And it is LOUD. And LOOOOOONG.


Mom, Dad, and I all turn to look at Crash, who looks at us, like, “What?”. And then, it hits us. That sound emanated from Belle.

We look at Belle, and she’s got this surprised look on her elegant little face, but is half smiling, too. Mom and I look at each other, and start that silent shaking laughter, you know, the kind that is so strong, it hurts? Tears are flowing down our faces. Belle starts laughing, Dad starts laughing, and finally, Crash decides he’ll join in, too.

Lord. You can’t pay for entertainment like this.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

One Score And Eight Years Ago

These pix are posted just to assist in setting the tone for this most serious post.  (Not really.  They're meant to go towards the end of the post, but this.damn.Macbook.  Arrrrrgh.)  Okay, back to these pix.  Elder Son. Christmas.  Playing with knives (and scabbards.  I know.).   It's all show, the blowhard. He's about the farthest thing from a gangsta you can get.  (Now, wait.  He's not gay or anything.) (Not to offend any gay gangstas...chill.) Hell. Let's just read on.

Twenty-eight years ago today, just past midnight, I was the most excited mom in the world – you had just been born. My son. My long-awaited firstborn. I knew your name years before you drew your first breath of air.

We’ve been through much together - love, heartbreak, excitement, and more! I’ve been your mother, your comforter, your playmate, your encourager, and your biggest fan. You’ve been my son, my comforter, my playmate, my encourager, and my biggest fan.

You are one of the funniest people I know – you’re a born entertainer, and people far and wide love you. You make friends easily, from all walks of life, and keep them forever. You’re quick-witted, and fun-loving. You have a heart of gold.

I have enjoyed watching you over the years as you mastered the art of showing dogs, goats, whatever would go into that show ring at the end of a rope. And then, finally, you were old enough to show steers – and went on to win shows all over the nation. (Remember when ThatManILove first saw your awards? He said, “Well. The Ego has landed.”) Now that you’ve grown past stock showing age, you’re passing on your skills to your little half sisters. I love that about you, and I love how those beautiful baby girls love you right back. I remember from age 1 1 /2 how you loved to dress as a rodeo clown, and won many a rodeo clown contest. They were always putting your photos in the paper.I remember when we were on the youth promotions committee at the rodeo and I looked for you and couldn't find you.  When I found you, you were down on your knees, a 6' tall 14 year old, teaching 3 little kids how to do the macarena, just to keep them occupied until it was their time to participate. I love how you love hunting, shooting, roping, dancing, wakeboarding, snow skiing, and a million other things. I love watching you play the guitar, and playing alongside Younger Son and ThatManILove. I love how you love Younger Son and That Man I Love. I love it when you play and sing one of your songs, and they join in, and vice versa. I love how music makes your world go round.

Remember when you were a senior, and you took me dove hunting, and we were on the mule, waiting for flybys by the flowline? And we turned around, there were about 50 dove on the ground, drinking water, within 5 feet of us? We got tickled, gave up, went back to the house and got the coyote hunting equipment (including the tape of those squealing rabbits?).

I love when we go on vacation that you’re content to chill with us with zero agenda but to all be together. I love that music flows through our family and is one of the ties that bind. I love how the four of us attend concerts together. I know the time we spend together is something precious; rest assured I never take it lightly.

I loved watching you at Christmas when you opened your annual trick package, saw how it was Mac software, and could say nothing but “Sh*t! Sh*t! Oh, Sh*t!”, knowing the MacBook had to be the next present. (It’s cool to see that no matter how old you get, you have never lost the ability to get excited. ) Then, when it’s “KnifeTime” and we break out the annual gift of knives to you and Younger Son, you immediately discern the hours of workmanship and excellence that someone put into making that knife. It’s a work of art, and you recognize and appreciate the art. Then, we get a different, more reverent type of “Oh, Sh*t!”

When ThatManILove and I got married, you were traveling all over Kingdom Come, rodeoing. When you got into town, you had horses and a underage girlfriend in tow...and due to circumstances beyond all of our control, combined with inclement weather, y'all ended up going on our honeymoon with us? And you and ThatManILove ended up staying at the Stockyards in your truck with the horses nearby in pens, while your girlfriend and I occupied the honeymoon suite? Yes. Just so you don't forget - I postponed my honeymoon for you, doofus. I love you.

You and I often trade high scores at the shooting range, but I suspect you let me win. (But if I find out that’s the truth, I will hurt you. Remember, I brought you into this world, I can certainly take you out.) I remember one time you said, when we were at a range, “Mom. This sucks. They have all these father-son shooting events…why don’t they have a mother-son shoot? You and I could so rock that!” The range owner has never forgotten that comment, and always brings it up. Each time, I’m reminded how blessed I am and how much I love you.

In more recent years, I’ve seen you gain much maturity. (I knew it would happen sometime!)

I can’t believe the years have passed and you’re nearing thirty years of age. I should be feeling old, but instead, I’m expectant and my heart soars when I think of you. I know this is only the beginning of your life, and there is more to come. If it’s anything like your past, it should prove to be good entertainment. I’m still as excited for you and your future as the day you were born. It has been my good fortune to come to know you, and I know it. Thank you for that.

Happy Birthday, Elder Son. I love you more!

Monday, February 9, 2009

Fifty-Fifty Split

The Little Brother and his siblings came to spend the night on Friday. The Bowling For Kids Sake (a Big Brothers Big Sisters fundraiser) took place Saturday, and a sleepover sounded fun. Before the kids arrived, I decided I'd better go to the grocery store to stock them up on goodies. My friend Cherie was with me, so to the store we go.

We’re on the far east side of the store, when Cherie says, “Oh, no!”. I turn around, “What’s wrong?”

A young girl has passed Cherie, and though I don’t think she yet knows it, said girl is in quite the bind. Cherie says, “What do we do? We’ve got to stop her!” Janie to the rescue. I shove the cart at Cherie, and start fast walking behind troubled chick, trying to catch her without drawing any attention. Midway, I turn around to Cherie, and say, “Why don't I ever have my camera?”

Now, this girl is no small chick, and she’s got long legs to boot. She’s got on a knee length denim skirt, a long t-shirt, and flip flops. I can’t catch her. She’s talking on her phone, and her hands are full of merchandise. Doesn’t slow her down a bit. I finally catch up to her, on the west end of the store. She turns down the ice cream aisle. Right behind her is a family with two boys and the daddy. They’re looking at the eggs, thank God. I’ve got to catch her.

“Ma’am! Ma’am!” I quietly speak. She finally hears me, and looks at me. “You need to turn around. You’ve got a problem.” She says, “I’m on the phone.” Duh, right. Me: “I know. Ma’am, you need to turn around right now before you really get embarrassed. You’ve split your skirt, and ...ummm, as you know, you...ummmmm, aren’t wearing any underwear.”

She gets off the phone and freaks out. “How bad is it?” Me: “Well, it's split right down the middle, and if your hem and your waistband give, you’re going to be totally naked from the waist down, so I’d say on a scale from 1-10 you’re at a 9.999.” I take her things from her, and tell her to turn the skirt around where the slit is up the thigh. By this time, Cherie's caught up to us. We find a shopping bag to help cover the rest. She’s totally embarrassed, but Cherie and I reassure her that no one saw but us. We part ways and resume our shopping.

Man. It’s never boring around here.

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Smile, You're On Candid Latte Camera!

I’m in the drive up (the one prior to and around the corner from the window where your order prints out on the screen) at Starbucks, waiting on them to take my order. While I wait, I’m leaning my head out the window, checking out my highlight colors in the sun. My hairdresser did something different and I swear parts of my hair are red.

The speaker comes on, and the young man says, and I quote:

“Hey, girl. Do you want your usual Venti Chai No Water? And, by the way, you’re hair’s looking good today!”

They must have a view camera here. God. I’m glad I wasn’t picking my nose…or worse.

Saturday, February 7, 2009

Those Dang Serta Sheep Got Out of The Pen

Thursday night, I couldn’t sleep. Thank God I went to bed early and caught a couple of hours of shuteye, because about 1 a.m., I was a.w.a.k.e. Decided to do a little work, since I was up, anyhow.

Later Friday morning, I received this e-mail:

-----Original Message-----
To: Janie

From: Rockstar

I am a little concerned. You see, I have a manager that is staying up all hours of the night probably because of Starbucks and blogging. Approving invoices at 2:15am and the like. What would you tell this manager?


From: Janie
To: Rockstar
Sent: Fri Feb 06 09:17:39 2009
Subject: RE: Worried


If I were you, and I had such a manager, I would be asking the following questions of said manager:

(1) Why did you take the wrong daytime vitamins at 8:30 p.m. last night before you went to bed?
(2) What's up with ABC Oil Company calling you at 4 p.m. yesterday and demanding a 25% cut by first thing Friday morning if we wanted to stay on the vendor list?
(3) Why didn't you get to relax and read blogs instead of worrying and working all night?

Nuff said. If you forward anyone this e-mail you will be in deepa poopa...

Thanks for caring!


-----Original Message-----

From: Rockstar

To: Janie

Subject: Re: Worried

Okay you need more time to focus on the small stuff than I thought. I am glad you don't drink or you might have a bad hangover this morning.

Whaaaattt? Well, heck. At least he cares – and that’s why we call him Rockstar!

By the way, it's lunch...I am in need of speed. Caffiene. Ginko Biloba. Something.

Or, maybe just a little sleep.

Friday, February 6, 2009

Blogger Help

I know I've been pretty needy this week.

It is my current quest in life to become a better blogger. To respond. To read. To comment. To devote my whole day to blogging. Well, at least what's left of it after working all the day long in my oilpatch, and doing hunting dog things, and shooting, and taking care of my family. (Notice the ranking of that...I may already be in trouble and needing intervention.)

Thusly, I have questions for you bloggers. Wanna play?

(1) Do you post, or try to post, on a daily basis?

(2) Do you respond back to commenters within your comments section? Or do you email each and every one of them?

(3) How many blogs do you visit a day?

(I may be working too closely with our engineers. I'm getting way deep into collecting data. )

Thursday, February 5, 2009

For The Love Of A Brother

It was a little exciting in the Sounding Forth and Fiberhawk households yesterday. I got a call from my Brother Scott about 10:30 a.m. yesterday.

Hey, Sis. I’m heading to Odessa to the cardiologist, Dr. Raja Naidu.
Yup. I think I may have had a heart attack this morning at work.

When I can breathe, I tell him: Don't do this s**t to me, Scott. If you die on me, I'll freakin' kill you. Seriously.

I know, I am a serious encourager, aren't I? (You always want me around when things are serious - I will remind you just HOW serious.) We laugh, but inside, I am starting to Freak. Out. In. The. Coolest. Way. Possible. I can't breathe. We lost one brother to cancer, not ready to lose Scott, too. He will be 50 this year. He’s fit as a fiddle. Doesn’t drink. Eats anything he wants. Goes 90 mph like someone else y’all know all the time. Doesn’t smoke. Oh, wait. He does smoke. Seriously. Time to ask for help. I get on the prayer e-mail chain.

This morning while at work, Scott had an episode and may have experienced a heart attack. He went straight to the hospital at Big Spring, and they saw something on his EKG that looked suspicious, and wanted to admit and keep him. Scott and Lisa decided to go another route and went to their local physician, who referred them to a cardiologist in Odessa. Scott and Lisa went straight to that cardiologist, who got them in immediately for an examination. The cardiologist has now scheduled an angiogram at 4pm this afternoon. If everything goes well, Scott will get to come home.

Scott seems to be fine, and I’ll be heading over to Odessa to be there before the procedure. Scott and Lisa have 2 sons in high school, 1 in college, and 1 sweet grandchild - all of whom need their dad and grandpa healthy and in his usual 90 mph mode! (Besides that, we still have some competitive sibling rivalry going on - Scott’s not yet beat my shooting score! ;) ) Just wanted to let y’all know and to ask for your prayers for Scott and our family. I’ll update you as I know more.

At 3:45 p.m., we’re with Scott in the pre-surgery room, cracking jokes, having fun. At 4:15 p.m., the nurses take him to the cath lab. Twenty minutes or so later, Dr. Naidu comes to get us, and shows us the angiogram results. We can see Scott laughing with the nurses in the cath lab.
Scott says this is how it went down in the cath lab.

Dr. Naidu asked Scott: What do you eat? Scott : Anything that’s put before me, I’m not picky. Greasy hamburgers, anything. Doctor: Do you smoke? Scott: Yes, about a pack a day. For the last 30 years.

The results? 100% CLEAR. I kid you not. I saw the scan myself, it looks marvelous. We don’t know what caused the episode, so that may remain a mystery. Stress? Muscle spasm? Anyway, Scott was released to go back to work today.

And me? I am so very thankful. I love that brother of mine. And he can beat me shooting anytime. Yeah, well, anytime he thinks he’s big enough. Heh.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Becoming One With the Mac - by Captain Smack

Oh, yeah, I can hear the crowd roaring now: Be the Mac! Be the Mac! Be the Mac!

Holly, The Blue Ridge Gal and My friend JP of The Big Red Lunchbox and the photoblog Bleu Chocolate (go check him out!) all left Mac tips for which I’m very grateful. I will be trying them out. Brother Scott told me to call upon my nephews, which is a dang good idea, if I can possibly coordinate my calendar with their calendar. Lots of people told me to just go ahead and load my shotgun.

Captain Smack from the blog “This Is Your Captain Speaking” left a comment concerning my Mac I've Fallen and I Can't Get Up MacRant yesterday.

With his permission, I’m going to share it with you.

"If you're having trouble with The Mac, it is a spiritual problem, not a technical one. The Mac is not a brand, dear, it is a religion. Obviously, you are not believing in The Mac hard enough. To become one with The Macness, say this prayer:

Dear Steve Jobs

Who art in iHeaven

Hallowed be thy apps

I giveth unto you

Thy heart Thy soul

And thy credit card information

In hopes that you will show me

The error of my PC ways

And leadeth me from temptation

The temptation of using a much cheaper

And much more user-friendly product

For you are The One

And The Zero

And all the ones and zeros

The Alpha and Omega

Not to mention that iPhone thingy

Which really kicks ass

Though it is a bit pricey

But I digress


Please give your commercially hip guidance

To me, my mouse, and my wallet

And show me

The Way

The Way to copy a simple file from one folder to another, which really shouldn't be that hard, but for some reason is, like, a total freaking pain in the ass, what the hell???


I shall fear not

As I walk through the shadow of the valley

Of bad customer service

And confusing help menus

And toolbars placed in odd locations

For no apparent reason

For I know that at the end

Of this struggle

I will learn how to copy/paste jpegs

And even install some freeware

And then it will all make sense

For I can brag that I have a Mac

I am one of The Chosen Ones

And all those PC users

Can kiss my ass.

Whatever and ever


Monday, February 2, 2009

Mac-a-doodle-dooooo! (A Cry In the Darkness For Help)

As some of you may remember, ThatManILove bought me a MacBook Pro for Christmas.
And, believe it or not, I’m having Windows withdrawal symptoms. Or, Mac adjustment problems. I thought it was supposed to be an intuitive machine. To my credit, I've only been on it about 10 times since Christmas, due to mi vida loca and crazy schedule.

I can’t right click to copy.

I can’t copy and edit hyperlink with the click of a button and the drag of a mouse.

I can’t watch a wmv.

I can barely drag a post from Pages to my blog (though that is pretty cool!), and when I do, it loses format.

Help! Maybe I can call 1-800- Mac for Dummies??

Any suggestions for tutorials? I can’t be the first dummy to want to be Mac literate! Run to my aid, fellow bloggers! I don’t want to be stuck in the dark ages forever! And what the heck am I going to do with all my contacts in Microsoft Outlook?

Update: I went to Best Buy, to my local Mac expert. I told him all the above, and he said:

I've not utilized a Windows PC in 18 years.

And that's the expert that's supposed to help me? Where's my freakin' shotgun? I asked him if there were any tutorials other than the ones on the machine, and he told me to go buy a book on Leopard. You guessed it. My response: What's Leopard? Yuppers, I've got some homework to do.

I did spend another $300+ dollars for the Mac Airwaves wireless modem (because Mac doesn't like Linksys) and a cable to transfer data from my PC to my Mac ; all which leads me to believe if I spend enough money, I'll get it all down. Until then, I'll take all the help I can get.

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Surprising Encounters of the VodkaMom Kind

Oh, my Lord! Go, quick! And see what happened to VodkaMom last night! Yaaahooooooo! (Please leave comments on her blog and congratulate her!)