March 30, 2006

I Miss My Dog

Poor Scout is in the doggie hospital :(. On Monday evening I noticed that she seemed to be arching her back and acting like she was in pain. I coaxed her out of her crate and did some gentle pressing on her spine and thought I might have gotten a reaction. I called Kevin in and at that point we couldn't get her out of her crate for anything. She wouldn't even come out for a cookie! So we weren't sure what was going on at that point. Tuesday morning she seemed better--perkier--and handled the porch stairs with no problem. Then she got more lethargic throughout the day and refused to go out again. I went to Curves in the evening and Kevin said he'd made a vet appointment for her because it was clear something was up. Wednesday morning he took her in and came back without her.

It's definitely another back injury--her 4th now. The vet said her reflexes were there but weren't as quick as he would have liked. He put her on IV fluids and IV steroids and wanted to keep her for a few days to make sure she's still (which is not easy to acheive when you have a Digory running around). We went in to the office to talk to the doctor this afternoon, thinking we might get to take her home, but once there we agreed to let her stay until Saturday. He showed us her x-rays and there's definitely some sort of damage between the last back bone and the first tail bone. He said a reinjury was guaranteed, but the best we could do was medical management (steroids and painkillers, and lots of crate rest for a flare-up). If she loses control of one or both of her legs we're looking at possible surgery, but for now that's too aggressive and unwarranted.

It's a good thing we've got Digory around to keep us company, but the house sure feels empty without her. Send good thoughts to a small dog!

Posted by Shelby at 09:38 PM | Comments (3)

Top Songs

I'm going to date myself severely now. Here are the top 100 songs from when I graduated from high school. That would be 1991. Highlights include:

It was apparently an oversexed year, with number
2. I Wanna Sex You Up, Color Me Badd--not just bad, BADD, Ooooooooo, I wanna sex you UP!
3. Gonna Make You Sweat, C+C Music Factory. You say no, I say yessssss. Well, actually I say no too.

And some songs I can't remember, like:
8. I Like The Way (The Kissing Game), Hi-Five I mean dude, not only can I not remember the SONG, I can't even remember the GROUP. And it was #8?
18. I Adore Mi Amor, Color Me Badd Not having been a Color me BADD fan, I had to look this one up and it's vaguely coming back to me. Excuse me while I push it out of my head now.
24. Romantic, Karyn White Again, song? No clue. Artist? No clue. Okay, I just listened to it on iTunes and I always thought that was a Paula Abdul song. Hunh.
26. Hold You Tight, Tara Kemp Again, song? No clue. Artist? No clue. Thought it was Paula Abdul? Right again.
29. Sensitivity, Ralph Tresvant See above, sans Paula Abdul.

There are the songs that made me wish I lacked eardrums, like:
1. (Everything I Do) I Do It For You, Bryan Adams #1? Try #1 Most Overplayed Song!
10. Baby, Baby, Amy Grant Strangely enough I was just thinking about this song tonight.
12. Because I Love You (The Postman Song), Stevie B Because come ON, anything with the subtitle "The Postman Song" should never have been made, let alone made it to the top of the charts.
13. Someday, Mariah Carey Any song by Mariah Carey fits in this category
15. From A Distance, Bette Midler Ahhhh! My ears! My ears!
27. You're In Love, Wilson Phillips Oh god, now the video is stuck in my head! Audio AND visual!
9. The First Time, Surface Lyrics: "The first time I looked into your eyes I cried..." My lyrics: "The first time I heard this song I screamed and tore my hair out." Okay, the meter is a bit off, but the sentiment is there.

There are songs that looked familiar but I felt compelled to look them up on iTunes and now I really wish I hadn't:
16. All The Man That I Need, Whitney Houston Seriously. Whitney Houston. What was I thinking?
19. Love Will Never Do (Without You), Janet Jackson That was Janet Jackson? Because I could have SWORN it was Paula Abdul.
23. Joyride, Roxette I think at one time I liked this song but that time is definitely not now.
30. Touch Me (All Night Long), Cathy Dennis Are you SURE it's not Paula Abdul?

And yes, there are some songs I do like:
6. Unbelievable, EMF You're unbelievable OOOOOOOHHHHHHHH!
7. More Than Words, Extreme I associate this more with college than with high school. Well, the above song too.
11. Motownphilly, Boyz II Men Hee hee hee--it's catchy!
14. High Enough, Damn Yankees No idea why I like this one but I do.
17. Right Here, Right Now, Jesus Jones Ah, it's the fall of the Berlin Wall! It's the first Gulf War! It's the end of Communism! Watching the world wake up from history!
33. Losing My Religion, R.E.M. Woo hoo! Still a great song and always will be!

Posted by Shelby at 12:07 AM | Comments (0)

March 28, 2006

An iTunes Meme

Throw your music player on shuffle. Answer the questions. Garnish with a bit of parsley and serve with a nice Merlot.

*How does the world see me?
Wise to the Ways--Catie Curtis
Heh, I like to think so too!

*Will I have a happy life?
Hole in the Bucket--Catie Curtis
I'm taking that as a compliment

*What do my friends really think of me?
Cheerleader--Deirdre Flint

*Do people secretly lust after me?
Blasphemous Rumors--Depeche Mode
So is that a no?

*How can I make myself happy?
Fields of Gold--Eva Cassidy
Now THAT'S what I'm talkin' about!

*What should I do with my life?
So Hard--Pet Shop Boys
Yes it IS so hard. So hard being me. *sigh*

*Will I ever have children?
St. Elmo's Fire (Man in Motion)--John Parr
Maybe I'll have a very active, pyromaniac son?

*What is some good advice for me?
I'll Miss You til I Meet You--Dar Williams

*How will I be remembered?
Only a Lad--Oingo Boingo
Seems like I've got some gender confusion in my future

*What is my signature dancing song?
When I Was a Boy--Dar Williams
And again with the gender confusion. And it's not even a danceable song! *pout*

*What do I think my current theme song is?
Angels Marching--Deb Talan
Marching toward what is not entirely clear

*What does everyone else think my current theme song is?
City Wide Rodeo--The Weepies
But you're WRONG! It's Angels Marching!

*What song will play at my funeral?
So In Love--OMD
Well I was hoping for an Angels Marching reprise, but I think I'd like to be remembered as someone so in love

*What type of men/women do I like?
That's Gaelic for WTF? Okay no, after extensive searching I have now learned that smaointe means "a line of thinking" or "a train of thoughts." Anyway, Smaointe is definitely Irish and I now have a very Irish last name so apparently I love Kevin. Yay!

*What is my day going to be like?
Spring--Richard Shindell
Very good iTunes! It IS Spring! :clap:

Posted by Shelby at 06:47 PM | Comments (0)

March 25, 2006

Another Actress Whose Name I Can't Remember

I won Runner-Up (that would be 2nd place) in today's Toastmasters competition. There were 4 contestants and I was number 2, which meant that I missed the first one and got to see the other 2. I'm not sure whether I like not being able to see the other contestants better, though now I think I'd rather know what I'm up against.

The question was much easier this time around. It boiled down to "Do you prefer live theater or movies, and why?" So I launched into how I love live theater and we've got Mark Taper Forum subscriptions and you should go see a play, even if it's at your local high school, and how the Mark Taper Forum has a proscenium stage. And then I thought, "oh crap, does the Mark Taper Forum have a proscenium stage???" And now, I just looked it up--and it doesn't! Heh. Apparently none of the judges were theater majors.

I did have a couple of goofs (aside from the proscenium stage). For one, I did some uncontrolled arm flailing. Kevin said I looked like I was dancing in a Devo video (if you don't get the reference, don't worry about it. No amount of explaining will make it clear). My second mistake was I started talking about the production of The Cherry Orchard at the Mark Taper. I said, "it starred Alfred Molina and...[insert long, pregnant pause]...another actress whose name I can't remember." I didn't get flustered by the mistake and managed to transition out of it pretty well but it wasn't a shining moment. Of course, after I finished speaking, the person who introduced me came up to shake my hand and he whispered, "It was Annette Bening--I saw it too." Ah yes! Annettte Bening! I can't believe I forgot it. But I'm glad I didn't take a stab at it because the only other name coming to mind was Melanie Griffith and I knew that wasn't right.

The guy who came after me pretty much sealed his fate with a bad Bush joke. This is Orange County, dude. Have you seen all of the "W" stickers? Not wise.

The last guy though--he was good. Really good. After he spoke I thought "the only way I'm going to get first place is if he went overtime." Which he didn't, and he won first place. It was well deserved. He was wearing a tuxedo in preparation for his speech (he participated in both contests) and really, it's hard to beat a man in a tuxedo.

During our break, though, I had a number of people come up to me and praise me for my speech. One woman said, "I volunteer at the South Coast Repertory and I just wanted to stand up and cheer when you were speaking!" That part was fun.

From here I go to the District Conference, but not to compete. I'm the alternate, so if Tuxedo Guy doesn't show up for some reason, I do get to compete. Otherwise I'm just in the audience. Still, I added a matching trophy to my first place win (the runner-up trophy is a bit shorter) and it was a lot of fun.

Posted by Shelby at 06:18 PM

March 24, 2006


My life is banal
nothing really to report
my blog languishes

How is the novel?
Coming along quite nicely
Thank you for asking

Have you drawn more fish
for your exciting art class?
Why yes, yes I have

Toastmasters is fun
competition tomorrow
wish me lots of luck

No mail to speak of
save an invitation to
Dorothy's wedding

Well, that's not quite true
I did get two packages
gifts for someone else

Loving the Prius
Great mileage! The carpool lane!
I wish we had two

Digory the dog
learned not to bark at the door
it's a miracle

And that's about it
can't think of anything else
signing off for now

Posted by Shelby at 01:20 PM | Comments (0)

March 20, 2006

What Movie Genre Are You?

The Movie Of Your Life Is A Cult Classic
Quirky, offbeat, and even a little campy - your life appeals to a select few. But if someone's obsessed with you, look out! Your fans are downright freaky.

Your best movie matches: Office Space, Showgirls, The Big Lebowski

If Your Life Was a Movie, What Genre Would It Be?

Posted by Shelby at 03:52 PM | Comments (2)

March 16, 2006

Happy Birthday Scouter!

Yes it's true--yesterday was Scout's TENTH birthday! Beagles have a long lifespan--they say 15 years but we know more than one person whose beagles lived to be 19, so Scout has some good years ahead of her. It's just so hard to believe she's 10! She's definitely getting white around the muzzle and her black spots are no longer completely black, but she's just as frisky as ever. Digory has taken years off of her life (in both the good and bad way!). She loves to frolic and play, although not as often as Digory (age 2) would like. But still, she's very active and is a healthy weight and everything. She celebrated her birthday with her favorite--a pig's ear. Happy (slightly belated) Birthday Scouter!

Posted by Shelby at 12:52 PM | Comments (1)

March 11, 2006

First Place!

I won first place at my Toastmaster's contest this morning! The competition was tough...I think. I didn't actually get to see anyone else compete. There were 5 contestants and we drew numbers for contest order. I was chosen last. The advantage of going first is that you get to watch everyone else's speech. But since Table Topics are very short I didn't have to wait long. Instead I stood back with the other contestants and while they told each other bad Irish jokes, I listened to my iPod. Someone said, "Oh, does that calm you?" and I said "Um, yeah." When in fact I was listening to Pink's "Get The Party Started." I didn't need to be calmed, I needed to get PUMPED!

When it was my turn I did indeed get a lame question. The question was, "What is your most significant contribution to society?" Oh come ON! In 2-3 seconds you expect me to select what my most significant contribution to society is, and then talk about it? My mind raced. And then I just started talking. I started with the declaration, "I have a heart condition." I think the members of my own club are getting really sick about hearing about my heart condition, considering this is the fourth time I've started something with, "I have a heart condition." But hey, whatever works, right? I then quickly moved on to an extremely brief explanation of my ICD and what that is. Then I talked about how when I first got my ICD I felt lonely and scared and so I reached out for help on the Internet. I joined an internet group and got a tremendous amount of support. Then, all of a sudden, I found myself in the position of giving support to others. I help ease their anxiety and answer questions about their ICDs. Being able to be there for others in my situation is my most significant contribution to society.


Our club Vice President came over during the break and said "you're definitely going home with a trophy" (there were two--winner and runner up). As it turns out--he was right! I got the top honors. I'll post pictures of the trophy but it needs a minor modification. On top it has a man standing at a lectern, and obviously I am not a man, so I can take it back to the trophy place (which, as it turns out, is quite close) to have it swapped out for a woman. Once that's done, I'll take pictures and post them here.

There was also the International Speech Competition, which I was not eligible for because you have to have given 6 speeches. I'm proud to say that Club 192's very own John Kosczki won runner up! His speech on how to give a eulogy, "A Few Kind Words" was fabulous and his trophy was well-earned!

For anyone reading this who has an ICD or who is a loved one of someone with an ICD, I invite you to visit the discussion board I helped set up,

Posted by Shelby at 03:17 PM | Comments (3)

March 10, 2006

The Contest

Well tomorrow's the big Toastmasters Area contest. You may recall that a couple of weeks ago I won the Table Topics category in our club. Tomorrow morning bright and early I'll go up against what should be 4-6 other people and compete. I practiced at our meeting last night and kicked ass (was awarded Best Table Topics for the meeting). I stayed late to get advice from the seasoned members. Pretty much it all came out to "Don't worry, you'll be fine," and "Expect a really lame subject."

The way Table Topics work are that someone comes up with a topic and springs it on you and you make an impromptu 1-2 minute speech. Apparently I've been spoiled in our club because our topics have been thought-provoking and interesting. For example, my topic last night was "Our theme is 'counting moments.' What does counting moments mean to you?" Anyway, at the competition we'll all be escorted out of the room, then brought in one by one and given the same topic. I really hope I get to go first because then I'll get to listen to everyone else after me. Otherwise I'm just waiting my turn.

Our seasoned members were brainstorming topics of the past and the ones they could remember were really, well, lame. Like "If you could invent a holiday, what would it be and why?" and "If you invented a time machine, would you go to the past or the future?" Meh. Anyway, we'll see what comes up. I'll report back sometime tomorrow afternoon!

Posted by Shelby at 10:53 PM | Comments (1)

March 08, 2006

Fishie, Part the Second

It's Fishie Time again! I have to warn you, it's going to be Fishie Time for a while--we're devoting 6 weeks to sea life (4 left to go). Yesterday I finished my collage fish. I collaged him entirely out of pictures of hair--sounds weird but it turned out really cool I think. His name is, predictably, Harry. Click on his picture below to enlarge it. As for Fish #1, well I want to thank everyone for your great suggestions, but after careful consideration, I determined that he didn't want to be called anything but "My Fish." Funny that. Also, there's a secret in the picture. Can you find it? Click on the extended entry below to find the answer.

All of the pictures are of human hair except the large fin on top. That one's dog hair.

Posted by Shelby at 09:46 AM | Comments (0)

March 06, 2006

The Cherry Orchard

Last night we saw a production of Anton Chekhov's The Cherry Orchard at the Mark Taper Forum in Los Angeles. It starred Annette Bening and Alfred Molina. Annette Bening I'm going to assume you know. You know Alfred Molina too, although maybe not immediately. Among other things, he played Doc Ock (the bad guy) in Spiderman II. You may remember that Spiderman II was, as my friend Cassie put it, "sucktacular" but Molina did the best with what he had and as it turns out, he's an excellent actor after all.

Anyway, The Cherry Orchard was fabulous. Absolutely fabulous. I loved it! It was well-acted throughout and the sets were original and sparse, totally befitting the subject matter. My mom, on the other hand, wasn't as crazy about it as I am. She thought it was really depressing. Which of course it was! It's Anton Chekhov! He's a dead Russian playwright! Writing about Russia at the late 19th century! This was not a happy time! Hee hee.

So yes, it was quite depressing, but so well done. I love Chekhov. I appreciate Chekhov. This was a fabulous performance.

Posted by Shelby at 11:34 AM | Comments (1)

March 04, 2006

And Finally...

The windows!

This first one is now hung on my wall, hence the odd angle. This was my first project, clear architectural glass (clear, textured glass). Click on the image for a larger version:

The second one is going to be hung in the front living room window. The funky psychodelic look in between the smaller dragonfly and the big one is because of the lemon tree in back. The glass is actually clear.

And Kevin's masterpieces! His project #1:

And his project #2:

Posted by Shelby at 07:52 PM | Comments (3)

March 02, 2006

B Plus!

Yay! I got my portfolio back from my art class and I got a B+! This is exciting because only one person got an A, and the majority of the class got C+s. So me and the girl who sits next to me, Bonnie, were doing a celebratory dance over our B+s. I'm very excited. My art phobia is slowly but surely being overcome. Ah, my therapist would be so proud!

Posted by Shelby at 07:02 PM | Comments (1)