Friday, September 30, 2005


Here's the thing: I'm kind of a klutz. OK, maybe not kind of; I am a klutz.

Once, when I still worked at the number factory, I was walking down the hallway toward my office with Mary and our VP of Operations following in my wake. Now I had walked down this hallway many hundreds of times in my day; after all, my office lived there. So walking down that particular hallway should have been pretty routine. But alas, nothing is routine if it involves both me and any kind of motor skills or coordination. So when I got to the bend in the hallway (which had ALWAYS been there), I managed to completely miss the yards of open space to my immediate right and plant my face square into the wall. Mary, the world’s most patient best friend, is accustomed to seeing these types of walking fuck ups from me, but Operations didn't spend nearly as much time observing my inability to navigate minor obstacles, and was surprised.

"Did she just run right into the wall?" Operations asked of Patient Mary.

"Yup." Mary checked her wristwatch. "She's about due."

These close encounters with inanimate objects happen far more frequently than even I can imagine. So frequently, in fact, that I very rarely remember them at all. How do I know that these events occur if I can't remember them? Well, by the evidence they leave behind, of course. Because I am always covered in bruises. Always. I always tease whoever I'm currently dating and/or pseudo-dating that people are going to think they beat me because of the purple welts perpetually visible all over my body. (Fish doesn’t beat me by the way. And I don’t beat him either. He fell.)

The current leader of the pack is a quarter sized contusion on the back of my right leg, just above the knee. It is so purple that it’s black, and it’s actually raised like some kind of relief map. Also, it throbs whenever I so much as change my pants. Obviously I backed into something with some serious force. You’d think I’d be able to remember a mishap that would cause that level of damage. But you’d be wrong. A total blank as to how it got there. I only noticed it because I ran a washcloth over it in the shower kind of roughly and was rewarded with a startling pain that almost made me fall forward and achieve a matching bruise in the middle of my forehead.

I love the advice I get from people when I show off my latest transient body art. “Eat more bananas,” people will tell me. “They have potassium.” Or “You need to start taking iron supplements.” Funny how no one ever suggests, “Maybe you should start paying more attention” or “Quit walking into things, you dumb ass.” Because really, giving my body the nutrients it needs to fight the bruising is treating the symptom rather than the problem, isn’t it?

Bartenderism: Coaching Philosophy

While watching college football last night at the bar:

"I hate conservative coaches! If I were coaching, I'd be out there running down the sideline with scissors. That's how it's done."

Thursday, September 29, 2005

The Right Way and the Wrong Way to Talk Smack

One of the more juvenile things that I love to do is to get in flame wars over the internet. Yes, I realize that this is very 7th grade of me but I DO NOT CARE. Because I think it's fun, and besides, I don't want to grow up, I'm a Toy'R'Us kid.

If you're going to talk smack on the internet, though (or really anywhere for that matter), there are some things you can do to avoid looking like a complete ass (or at least, slightly less of an ass than you already look like for engaging in this kind of behavior in the first place):

1. Attack the post, not the poster. Being outright mean to people just isn't nice. Also, responses like "Oh yeah? Well, you're ugly!" make you look really fucking stupid. (Thanks to Fish for articulating this point much more eloquently 3 months ago)

2. Be able to back up what you say. This doesn't mean be willing to punch someone in the face if they don't agree with you. It means that you need to have a solid argument before you start. For example, if you say "My cat is HUGE compared to yours" I shouldn't find that your cat is a quarter inch longer than mine when I measure them.

In case you are still unclear of the rules, I offer this example from MySpace bulletins posted today. The first, our "wrong way" example, is from Vicodin Jim, who fancies himself some sort of baseball fan:

My Friars took the NL West Division title.
What about the Cubs? Oh yeah. The Cubs suck. The Cubs suck a lot.
Padres baby, eat it Cubs fans.

While this is all true (the Padres DID win the NL West and the Cubs DO (sadly) suck), it implies in it's comparison that the Padres are a far better ballclub than the Cubs. As you will see from my well researched "right way" post, this implication is somewhat misleading:

Hmm, DO the Cubs suck?

Honestly, yes. Yes they do. They suck exactly two games more than the Padres suck.

As of this writing, the Cubs 4th place record is 77-81, while the Padres division clinching record is 79-79. It's not the Cubs fault that they don't play in the hands down worst division in all of baseball.

Speaking of a 79-79 record, when I do the math on that I come up with a division winner that is only a .500 ballclub. Wow, congratulations. That means all they have to do is win ALL FOUR of their remaining games in order to NOT earn the record for fewest wins for a division champion, set by the New York Mets way back in 1973.

Oh and what's this? Oh, they'll be playing the Cardinals in the first round of the playoffs? The St. Louis Cardinals with the best record in baseball, currently three games shy of having a 100 win season? Wow, I bet they're worried. *shiver*

That, my friends, is how it's done. Now if you'll excuse me, the bell is about to ring and I need to go to my locker and get my backpack.

Introducing Fred

Friends, there is someone I'd like you all to meet. Everyone say hi to Fred.

Did I mention that Fish is the bestest guy EVER? He showed up at my house last night with Ghostbusters II, Stripes, pizza money and Fred. Because he rules like that.

First of all can I say Apple's packaging rocks hard core? Because it does. That photo on the front of the box is life size. I know because Fred is sitting directly on top of the picture on his box now. Also I got iPod and iTunes software, a USB cable, ear buds, two sets of ear bud covers, instructions, warranty information, apple stickers and a little dock adapter for a regular dock (sold separately). Fred himself was wrapped in a plastic wrapper that advised me not to steal music. Oh and that Fish guy? Had Fred engraved for me: 'To My Ish: Let The Pending Cease"*. Aww.

When we unwrapped him, we found that Fred was powerful hungry, so we fed him a bunch of songs. Fish, being that he's one of "those", runs around town with an iBook (which I have nicknamed "The Breather" because of that LED light that dims and brightens rhythmically and freaks me right the fuck out), so when we plugged Fred into it, the Breather automatically formatted Fred for Mac. This was ok until I plugged him in at work today and he was wiped clean and reformatted for Windows. I'll be able to put the songs back next time I see Fish, but in the short term, it means I don't get to rock the N.E.R.D. or Jay-Z/Linkin Park remixes on my way home tonight. It also means I have to be careful about how much I play him this weekend on Golf Trip 2 since I won't have a USB port to plug him into for go juice.

I love Fred.

*Yes, we do realize that this makes no sense. We know this girl who is dumb, but thinks she's smart. She tries to prove this by using words that are just slightly too big for her. Such as pending. She grasps that it means you are waiting for something, but not what kind of waiting. So when she asked her ex if they could get back together and he didn't answer right away, she ended up sending him a message telling him she needed an answer which read "I can't take the pending". It's hilarious because she talks/writes like that all the time. Fish calls it "Faux Eloquence". I call it priceless. Stay tuned for more faux eloquence as it occurs.

Monday, September 26, 2005

My Friends Are Nerds

I have a ring with my birthstone in it. It was a gift from my cousin. It's my favorite ring. I wore it this weekend.

Laying in bed last night, I realized it was not on my finger. I called Fish.

Me: "Hey Fish? Can you look around your house and see if I left my garnet ring there?"

Fish: "You think you left your garnet ring here?"

Me: "Yes."

Fish: "A garnet ring from Final Fantasy 9?!?"


A Monday Poem

My boss
Drives me crazy
Comes to my desk
Looks around and says “excellent”
Then just walks away
What the fuck?
I’m confused

Weekend Football Wrap Up

Buckeyes 31 - Iowa 6

The Buckeye defense continues to impress me, sacking Drew Tate 5 times, and shutting down the run entirely (Iowa had 18 rushes for -9 yards).

Troy Smith completed 13 of 19 passes and didn't get intercepted at all. He had a little trouble holding onto the ball a couple of times, but overall I think he's looking better.

Wisconsin 23 - Michigan 14

Michigan losing is always a happy day for me. Michigan losing their Big Ten opener is even better. But most importantly, Michigan dropping from 14 all the way out of the rankings (for the first time since 1998) has me bouncing around the office doing a "Fuck yeah! In your face!" happy dance, complete with "rock on" fingers, exposed tongue and variations on the chicken dance.

Colts 13 - Browns 6

You'd think I'd be upset by the Browns loss, but you'd be wrong. The Browns were getting 13.5 in this game, and managed to only lose by 7. Since I had money on them, I consider this a victory. Go Browns.

Bengals 24 - Bears 7

Kyle Orton may be "The Answer", but with 5 interceptions on Sunday, I'm not entirely sure I understand the question.

In other news, what's up with the Bengals? I knew they were supposed to be better this year, but 3-0 and first place in the division? I simply was not prepared. And I know I shouldn't be rooting for them being that they're in the same division as my Browns, but really, if the Browns can't win it (and I assure you, they can't) I'd rather have it be my Ohio brethren than the Steelers or those fuck-sticks the Ravens (in last place right now by the way. Boo-yah.)

Amber's Monday Football Mood Is: GOOD

You Can Dress Me Up But You Can't Take Me Out

I believe I've mentioned before my debilitating fear of any stranger who asks me a question. Especially if it is their job. Wanna freak me out? Walk up to me in a store and say, "Can I help you?" as if you work there.

Alternatively, you can just be my waitress. Saturday evening, while waiting for the Glorious Fish Man to come home from a LAN party, Thugglife Chris and I decided to take in some Italian food. Out. At a restaurant. A restaurant I've only been to once before, which means I'm still somewhat ignorant of the ordering procedure. Being ignorant of the ordering procedure has the effect of making me nervous, public nervousness tends to cause me to act silly, and acting silly in a nice restaurant frequently causes me to look like an ASS. It is not helpful that Chris can't decide what to eat, and is asking me what different things are on the menu (since I obviously will know, being Italian and all) while I'm trying to construct a complete sentence around what I want to order.

"What's Gnocchi?"

"Huh? Gnocchi? Um, I don't know. I think it has cheese on it."

We manage to order some Cokes without incident, and Chris asks for more time to decide what he wants, causing me to sweat profusely at the thought of our waitress actually coming BACK to the table to talk to me AGAIN. When she does come back, Chris is still not ready and starts asking her about the chicken special.

"It's two pieces of chicken breast, lightly breaded and served with a white wine, lemon sauce and a side of pasta."

Nervous Amber, impatient to get the ordering ordeal over with, puts her hand to her mouth conspiratorially and whispers to Chris, "That sounds good!" - at full whispering volume.

The waitress thinks this is funny, and also whispers to Chris, "It is!" Great, now she's laughing at me.

So Chris orders the chicken and now it's my turn. "I'llhavethecheesestuffedraviolibecausethat'swhatIwant," I blurt. "and can I get a salad with that?"

"Yes, well, all of our entrees come with a salad." See what happens when you don't know the procedure? I'm mortified by not knowing about the "comes with a salad" rule. So my mouth starts running again.

"Really? It comes with a salad? Wow, that's AWESOME! It's like you guys knew I was coming!"

"Um. OK. And I'll bring you guys two more cokes." Because, you see, Chris drinks really fast, and I sucked mine down in one gulp trying to cure my cotton mouth. By the time she brings the (free with entree!) salads, I've sucked the second one down too.

"Wow. I should have just brought you guys a carafe. In fact, I think I will bring you guys a carafe."

"Heh heh, you said carafe." The waitress looked at me like I had three heads and walked away. Chris burst into hysterical laughter.

"Oh my God! What the fuck was that?"

"Listen. I told you. I'm scared of her. She makes me nervous. I just...I can't talk to strange people. It freaks me out."

"Right. So retail is probably not for you then, huh?"

In the meantime, we had eaten all the bread. Our waitress notices this when she shows up with our carafe. "Would you like some more bread?"

Chris, a veteran of restaurant ordering, answered with a simple but effective "No." I, on the other hand, in a frenzied panic (DO I want more bread? It's hard to say. How do I know? What if I don't want bread right now but I'm hungry for it later? What do I do?) manage to articulately spout, "Uuuhhh. Uuummm. Nnnnoo? No. I'm pretty sure I don't require any more bread."

The waitress smiled at Chris and made fun of me like I wasn't even there. " 'I don't require'...I like the way she talks." Great.

Most of the rest of dinner passed without incident, until I discovered that of my six GIANT raviolis, I was only able to consume three. But they were good and I wanted the rest for later. This however, would involve my having to ask for a box, not a small feat.

Her Scariness came over to check on us. "How was everything? Can I wrap that up for you?"

My brain: Yes. Say yes. Or even yes please. Just answer the question and shut up. She already thinks you're a moron.

My mouth: "That would be great, you see, because I want these little guys to come home with me and I want them to be my friends!"

Yeah. People, it is obvious there is no hope for me.

Monday, September 19, 2005

Weekend Visitation

I finally got to see my little one this weekend. I was really nervous about it, so Fish went along with me for support. Thank heaven he was there too; at first I couldn't find anything to say and Fish had to hold up the whole conversation for a while.

It was everything I could have hoped for. Finally getting to spend time with my little one, getting to hold him, listen to him, look on his beautiful was a dream come true.

It got me thinking about the possibility of bringing him home with me to live. I talked to Fish about it and he says he's willing to help me do whatever it takes to get my little one and me together at last. I am so excited I can hardly contain myself. I may even have him in my custody by Christmas!

Thursday, September 15, 2005

Bartenderism: Fatter Than You

One thing that I love about people who have been drinking is their accidental honesty, which is when they tell you things about you they would never say to your face under the influence of sobriety.

Such as a couple of nights ago when the bartender rang me about his latest evening out. He had apparently been in a conversation with a girl who turned out later to be a hooker (well, I mean, she was a hooker the whole time I guess, he just didn't know she was a hooker when he started talking to her. Not that he doesn't talk to hookers all the time: he frequently comes home from Vegas with a whole variety pack of "So this hooker comes up to me and says..." stories. But I am rambling now and none of this is really the point. Carrying on:) He's having a conversation with this girl and her rarefied employment is brought up, whereupon he mentions that in Vegas he has conversed with many a hooker because they seem to enjoy talking with him. And her response is that no, they don't really want to talk to him, they are working. And he argues that in fact they specifically pointed out in the conversations that they were indeed not working and just looking for someone to talk to. And again she tells him that this is incorrect since all working girls are always working.

At which point, the bartender abruptly gets up and walks away from her, answering her cry of "Hey, where are you going?" with "You just said working girls are always working, and since you are one, and I would never pay you for sex because I don't find you at all attractive, I'm going to go talk to someone who actually wants to have a conversation with me."

When he got home he relayed this story to me in his deadly serious but always hilarious "I'm so insulted" voice.

"She wasn't even attractive, like at all. She was one of your ugly redheads* and she was fat. Well, not like Orca or anything, just, you know, big. And she was talking about how good she is a blow jobs, and you know how I am, I REALLY like blow jobs. But not from her. And definitely not if I have to PAY her."

"Mmm hmm. So 'not Orca'? I really don't know what that means exactly."

"It means she's fat but not super-fat, you know?"

"No. Like chunky? I don't know what you mean. Can I get a height to weight ratio?"

"She's 5'8". And probably, I would say, like 150 to 165."

At this point I perk up because, at risk of losing my audience who may be picturing me as a rail-thin demi-goddess, in real life I am 5'7" and 145 pounds. Which is not materially smaller than the redheaded prostitute he has just described. And while I find flaws all over my body and wish I could magically drop 10 pounds (and by magically I mean without exercising or changing any of my eating habits), I would hardly describe myself as fat. Also, being that I'm a girl, which we've previously established makes me crazy by nature, I in my infinite insanity decide to use this opening (and his ever so slight intoxication) to get him to admit that he thinks I'm fat. Just so I can wallow in it. Because it's what we do. And so I say, "So she's my size."


"Um, no, she's not really your size. Like for instance, her legs are fatter than yours. And her waist? It has rolls all the time, when she's sitting and standing. Not just when she's sitting. And her ass is the kind of ass that has no real, you know, form to it. Not like it's big but still has a shape. It has no shape. So I wouldn't say she's your size. She's a little bigger than you."

Right. Her legs are fatter than mine? Fatter than mine? And she has rolls all the time, not just when she's sitting. Presumably, as opposed to me, who only has rolls when I'm sitting? What's great is that the trap worked so perfectly I couldn't even get mad. Really, that was way too easy. Anyway, since I was so pleased with the success of my ruse, I decided not to do the typical girl thing and get all indignant on him, but to save the "are you calling me fat?" card to play during a later hand.

Man, I love alcohol.

*He was referencing the Amberance Redhead Theory: that there is no such thing as an average redhead. This is based on 27 years of observation, from which I have concluded that all redheads fall into one of two categories, drop dead gorgeous, or butt fucking ugly. If you are redhead and someone has said you are "ok" looking, it's a lie. They are either trying to protect your feelings, or trying to play it off that they don't want to tear your clothes off and make sweet sweet love to you for 6 days.

Thursday, September 08, 2005

In Case You Live Under A Rock

NFL football regular season opens tonight. Patriots versus the Raiders. 9 pm Eastern on ABC.

I think I might be having an orgasm right now.

Tuesday, September 06, 2005

Congratulations Simone and Russell!

The Bizzybiz Wedding Awards
brought to you by: The Runaway Bride (with apologies to those of you who don't know any of these people)
Most Adorable Couple: Simone and Russell
runner up: Simone's Grandparents, Syd and Dolly
Best Wedding Feature: Simone and Russell, hiring a live band instead of a dj.

Best Speech: Kelly, sister of the bride, for saying "Simone's birthday" instead of "Simone's wedding"

Best Sense of Humor: The Midpark Alumni for interrupting the rest of Kelly's speech by singing "Happy Birthday"
runner up: Brandon, after the reception ended, for shouting "To the bar!"

Best Kept Secret: Simone, for successfully pulling off fake hair

Best Wedding Dress: Simone, as the bride

Furthest Distance Traveled to Attend: Simone's family, "The Brits", St. Albans, Hertfordshire, United Kingdom
runner up: Kelly, Los Angeles California

Most Successful at Making Amber Cry: Simone, for thanking her "American family", by name, during her speech
runner up: rum and coke
Most Hoity-Toity Feature: Small dish of raspberry sorbet, served in between the salad and the main course, to "cleanse the palette"

Most Frequently Mistaken for the Groom: Eric, Russell's identical twin brother
runner up: Sisler
Best Use of the Union Jack at an American Wedding: The Brits, for busting in during "We Are Family" wearing Union Jack plastic hats

Best Performance of an Irish Drinking Song: Brandon, for "We drink and drink and drink and drink and drink and drink and FIGHT!"

Most Asinine Display: The Midpark Alumni, for drunkenly singing the Alma Mater and the fight song while hugging each other and swaying back and forth on the dance floor

Best Accidental Flashing: Amber, for her boobs popping out of her strapless dress no less than three times while swing dancing with Doug to "Jump, Jive and Wail" *

Worst Job of Denying Having Hooked Up: Vinny, for "Diana had an extra bed..."

Best Wedding Ever: Simone and Russell.

Congratulations guys!

* I'd like to thank God, my family, the GAP, my partner Doug for swinging me around like a ragdoll and making this all possible, and the fans. Without you guys I could never embarrass myself this frequently.