Wednesday, December 30, 2009

You Can Never Go Home Again Oatman! But I Guess You Can Shop There.

Look, I don't mean to sit around trash talking my hometown, but Cleveland has a way of being a soul-crushing vortex of despair even when you are having a good time.

Saturday I embarked on a trip to Cleveland that I have not made in years, after a tag team attack from Mrs. Sizemore and my stepmother - apparently my father and brother continue to live in a magical fantasy land where I am not only a valuable member of the family but also fun to be around and therefore they miss me. I know right? Inexplicable. Regardless, Saturday I flew to Cleveland so they could see me.

The trip itself probably deserves its own story. I was up at the ass-crack of dawn so that I could catch an orange line train down to Midway in time for a pre 9:00 a.m. flight. The bartender, fresh off a Christmas night shift at the bar, tells me that this is ridiculous and as long as he's up he'll just give me a ride. Which seemed like a nice gesture until I realized that this meant a half an hour of driving through snow to the south side, all the while listening to him complain about how he fucking hates going to Midway and that it would take him forever to get back home in all that snow because every other driver on the road had turned stupid. So sorry to have inconvenienced him with my not asking him to take me anywhere at all. This has the added effect of getting me there fully three hours in advance of my 50 minute long flight.

The earliness of my arrival actually turned out to be a good thing, as I tried to go through security with red and white striped hair and a shirt that read "All Bets on Death" on the day after some douche tried to blow up a plane in Detroit (seriously Detroit? WHO DID HE THINK WOULD CARE?). On top of that I had one of Mrs. Sizemore's Christmas gifts in my bag - a Magic Cheezburger, which I unbelievably forgot had a tiny amount of liquid sealed inside it so the little phrase thingy could float around. I can't really blame them: it would have been obvious to anyone that I was a terrorist, what with my attention calling hair, fake sandwich/bomb that I didn't even try to hide and the announcing of my intention to die on my shirt. Besides, I'd be lying if I said the attentions of the TSA screener who felt me up didn't leave me feeling a bit frisky. You caught me. I liked it.

While waiting (and waiting and waiting) for it to be time for my flight, my attention was caught by the recently updated automated announcement system, which now includes instructions on basic hygiene such as: Cover you face with a tissue if you cough or sneeze! and Wash your hands...with soap! They actually said that "with soap". And I started having the thought that geez, do people REALLY need to be told to use so- ...and then cut myself off as I realized that yes, sadly, they really do.

The flight itself was pretty uneventful, except for my realization that despite knowing intellectually that I live next to a cluster of some of the largest fresh water lakes on the entire planet, I fail to grasp their vastness until I am in a plane flying over them and I still can't see the shore on any side. Fuckers are just absolutely massive.

Cleveland Hopkins International Airport smells like cinnamon rolls and mediocrity. It has been perpetually under construction since before I was born and despite this, looks exactly the same as it did 30 years ago. Oh, with the exception of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Store they have in there now. I laughed out loud like the crazy woman I am when I saw it. The concept is brilliant: buy souvenirs for your friends and relatives from the one and only interesting thing worth seeing in the entire city without ever having to actually go there and see it! It's fucking genius and underscores my longstanding argument that American ingenuity does not stem from the question "How can we make the world better?" but from the question "How can we make it so that we can be as lazy as possible and put no effort into anything, ever?" IMMD.

The triumphant return of the prodigal daughter was just as I expected. My dad cried, I ate pie, and mysteries were solved. Apparently Mrs. Sizemore and RLC didn't plan their ruse for getting me very well, and Cap was highly confused when Mrs. Sizemore started panicking that she and RLC were not ready at 11:00 to "go get doughnuts". Following that, as is traditional in my family, everyone settled into their own room doing their own activities by themselves, thereby negating the entire point of "getting together". It was quietly hilarious.

Later we drove out to visit Simmy and a very surprised and confused Kelly (I'd called and left her a message that Cap and I wanted to get together on Mrs. Sizemore's assertion that Kelly knew I was in town. She didn't). The highlight was my little niece who not only knows that a screwdriver will remove the panel on her cash register so the batteries can be changed, but can tell a Flathead screw from a Phillips-head and select the appropriate tool. She's two years old.

After a dinner out with my parents where I made a complete ass of myself trying to order a bowl of soup, we retired to the house where Cap, Mrs. Sizemore and my dad engaged me in several rounds of Smart Ass, one of which I won. This was a really huge deal: Mrs. Sizemore and her giant brain packed full of crap had apparently won every single round of Smart Ass that had been played since Thanksgiving. I was the hero of the day. They threw me a ticker tape parade and had my name written in the sky by an airplane (OK, really they just said "haha" and pointed at Mrs. Sizemore and I poured myself a glass of Amaretto).

The fun continued when us three kids met up with Kelly, her beau and some other graduates of our high school at a bar. Of this I have little memory, but the photos in my camera assure me that I had an excellent time. Per usual, I took notes that turned out to be mostly useless:
  • "R.T. Story" - I know what this one means. R.T. stands for "rubber twat" and is indeed a great story, however it is not my story so if you want to hear it, you'll have to pester Cap.
  • "White supremacist ass crack" - I also remember this one. While we were merrily drinking at the bar a short, fat man with a shaved head and white supremacist tattoos all over it walked in and bellied up to the bar. We noticed him and were afraid, but as we were all white and out of his line of sight we soon forgot he was there. Until someone (Kelly?) happened to glance over and notice that his pants were falling off. Like, a lot falling off. His jeans were nearly to his knees and his gray boxer briefs were just above balls level. I can't believe he wouldn't have noticed a breeze across such a large amount of exposed ham hock. Being very drunk by then, we fumbled conspicuously for cameras and may have been talking about it much louder than we intended, but we manged to get our shots without being shot by him or his friend.
  • "Tai's face (the photos that are the same)" - In my camera is a series of photos where various people are holding their hand out in front of their face and appear to be either angry or singing opera. I am assuming these are the photos this note refers to, but I fail to recall what the fuck I was talking about.
  • "Jenny, how do you make it happen?" and "cap & cow (ask Kelly)" - These are some of the last notes I wrote and I haven't got any idea what the could possibly mean, though I seemed to place a great deal of importance on remembering the second one because I've written it very carefully in even better handwriting than I have when I'm sober.
There is another separate set of notes from when I polled everyone at the table about what my next hair cut and/or color should be. Most of the suggestions are as would be expected for my head: "Jet black with platinum and Burgundy highlights cut to the chin", "Burgundy or eggplant", "Pink and black/ jagged", "Green and rich yellow", "Black with silver, jagged (not curly)", except for my brother's vote which says far more about the speaker than it does about me. I quoted him directly: "Put it back to the color it's supposed to be. I want you to look like Ann Coulter is your friend."

All in all, I had a really great time, including watching the Browns win their third game in a row (the hell?) before going to the airport on Sunday. Which is why I was so startled by the overwhelming sense of joy and relief I had upon landing back in Chicago. I can only conclude that it is the flat and colorless expanse of Cleveland itself that produces the feelings of hopelessness and despair I get every time I go there.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Christmas Jeer

Ok, ok, I get it now. I finally realize how it can be that not everyone shares my Christmas related glee. This is the saga of the tree.

I waited until the last minute to buy a Christmas tree, either because I am lazy or because I told myself I was poor so I wouldn't have to admit that I am lazy. Either way, on Sunday afternoon I found myself at the Home Depot pawing through picked over Douglas Firs looking for one that was taller than I am. The 7 footer I found was already baled and I bought it without bothering to unbale and look at it, either because I am lazy or because I told myself it was the only 7' Douglas left and I was buying it regardless so I wouldn't have to admit that I am lazy. It was actually a pretty painless transaction: the guy at the check out counter was unbelievably friendly for a Home Depot cashier standing outside in the cold all day (he volunteered that he was enjoying his work because so many people were leaving with trees and it made them happy). He even talked to the tree trimmer guy for me about cleaning up the bottom of it, which was one less stranger I had to talk to. Then two other remarkably chipper Depotists merrily bound my new tree to the top of Alistair whilst gushing about what an awesome car I have. This was the last good tree related thing to happen.

Later that evening, after carrying the tree up three flights of stairs unaided, I began the process of trying to get it erected. Usually this is an extremely easy endeavor due to the Magic Tree Stand. The Magic Tree Stand is a stand that has a long spike up the middle of it. The tree farmer I bought it from used to drill a hole in the bottom of the tree that had been purchased that would fit the spike, then when the customer got it home they would simply impale the tree on the spike through the hole and the tree would miraculously stand up straight without any screw tightening, arguing or swearing. The only thing different now that I live in Chicago is that the hole is not pre-drilled when I buy my tree. I have to get out my wood boring drill bit and make it myself. Up until Sunday that hadn't been a problem. True, I am a weakling and drilling into a tree is hard and makes my arm tired, but it only takes 10 minutes and then voila! Easy treesy. (heh.) So I got out my drill, lined it up straight with the trunk, drilled a 5 inch deep, 5/8 inch wide hole in the bottom of my tree, manhandled it through the back door and into my house, stuck it on the spike and let go.

It slumped over.

I stood looking at it, shocked, because this had never happened before. The bartender walked into the room behind me and helpfully told me "That's really crooked." The problem did not become apparent until I finally unbaled it: the trunk of the tree ran straight and true, right down to the bottom - except for the lowest 8 inches or so, which jutted off at 30 degree angle from the rest of the tree. Thus my carefully drilled hole was 30 degrees off center and my tree appeared to be drunk. There was nothing I could do to fix it. The hole needs to fit tight to the spike or the tree will wobble around with nothing to support it, so redrilling wasn't an option. Knowing that if I had just unbaled and looked at the tree when I bought it instead of being lazy, I could have avoided the problem entirely wasn't helpful. It was too late to come up with a solution, so I just filled the tree stand with water, leaned the tree on the wall and went to bed.

Monday morning dawned, and so did the realization that the only real solution was to go out and buy a normal tree stand and start over. So after work I set out to buy one. This was easier said than done. Home Depot was sold out of tree stands. Target apparently never carried them in the first place. Eventually I found myself at Menards where not only did they have a stack of tree stands that was taller than me, but allegedly I saved big money. After dinner I went about transferring my tree into the new tree stand.

Actually, it may be more accurate to say that after dinner I spent an hour and a half wrestling with a dead tree. After I'd assembled the new tree stand, I picked up the tree out of the old tree stand and laid it on the floor. I now had: one tree stand filled with water near the wall, one empty tree stand way too close the the coffee table, a 7 foot tall unbaled fir tree laying across most of the floor and cutting me off from the rest of the room and a one year old kitten slowly circling the tree like a land shark. It seemed best that I take apart the old tree stand and get rid of the water first since if I didn't I was certain to spill it, step in it, or both. I took it apart and picked up the tub of water, then realized that the only way to get rid of it was going to involve me climbing over an armchair. I somehow managed to do this without breaking my neck or dumping the water all over the bartender (who was very helpfully sitting two feet away and gambling at the computer as if nothing were going on behind him). This will be easier than I thought, I said to myself, ensuring that it was going to turn out to be way more difficult than I thought.

I picked up the tree and tried to put it in the new stand, which was still way too close to the coffee table because I hadn't thought to move it. Everything on the table tumbled to the floor. I sighed and put the tree down, fixed the coffee table and moved the tree stand. I went to pick up the tree to try again but this time, the cat, who had disappeared earlier, poked her head out from inside the tree and glared at me. I extracted her from the branches and tried again. Yay! The tree was finally in the stand. Oh but wait: Why was it wobbling around like that? It turns out that while the lower branches were perfectly high enough on the trunk for the old stand, on this one they were too low and would have to be sawed off before I could get it in the stand. I don't have a saw. I put the tree back down and sat on the floor glowering, thinking I was going to have to go back out AGAIN and buy a saw. Luckily, it dawned on me that Jose, our friendly but extremely drunk, English language challenged building engineer probably had a hand saw I could borrow. I went down the three flights of stairs to his apartment to check. "Hey Jose. Do you have a saw I could borrow?"

"A sword?"

"No, a saw. Like a hand saw? For my tree."

"Three sword?"

I mimed sawing and wondered why I just HAD to take Latin in high school instead of taking Spanish like everybody else*. But it worked, and after five minutes of him digging around in his massive collection of tools, I was trudging back up three flights of stairs with a hand saw.

There appeared to be only one branch that I would need to remove, which was a huge blessing because as I stated before I am weakling and sawing is hard. Mr. Scrooge the bartender continued with his fine assistance by turning around in his chair to watch and saying "That is not a good idea. You're going to cut your leg off." Angela was also watching from a position way too close to the saw and I had to keep stopping to shoo her away. Eventually, the branch was removed (my leg still attached) and I went to pick up the tree to try again. Once again there was a cat in it. Once again I fished around inside it until I pulled out an unhappy kitten.

By now my wimpy arms were exhausted and I closed my eyes and made a wish for the tree to please PLEASE fit in the stand without me having to saw anything else. When I heard the trunk hit the bottom of the stand my heart skipped a beat and I let out the breath I didn't realize I was holding. "Is this tree straight?" I asked the bartender.

"Hold on," he said, finishing his bet while I stood there holding up a 7 foot tree. A minute later he glanced over his shoulder for an 8th of a second. "Yeah, that looks good," he said and went back to gambling. It was obvious by now that I was not going to be offered any useful help from the roommate who had been asking me for weeks when I was going to get "our" tree. Oh, I should also mention here that this entire time I had been wearing long sleeves and gloves because as could only happen to me, I am allergic to the tree and I break out in a very painful rash if the sap gets on my skin. I now found myself kneeling on the floor, hot and sweaty from sawing and repeatedly lifting a tree whilst wearing a fucking snowsuit, trying to keep a tree standing up straight as I reached underneath the tree to tighten the screws with my other hand, my face breaking out in angry red dots because the low branches were all up in my face, praying that I wouldn't poke my fucking eye out with with one of them and begging my cat (who was now sitting on the arm of the chair staring at the tree and licking her lips) not to jump in the branches and knock the fucking tree over on top of me and for one moment, one brief moment while I was on the floor turning screws, I caught a glimpse of why everyone glares at me when I start singing Christmas carols and wearing Santa hats the day after Halloween. But then I stood up and saw my beautiful, full, fragrant Christmas tree and I remembered myself and realized it was all worth it.

The lights, however, I decided could wait for one more fucking day.

*BrownsFan pointed out that even if I had taken Spanish, I probably would not have learned the word for saw anyway.

Tuesday, December 08, 2009

Amberance At Christmas Time: *Face Palm*

Right people. Let's go over this one more time, as much to remind myself as to remind you. Currently it is:
  • The middle of The 40 Days of Christmas
  • Irresponsible Spending Month
  • Almost my birthday
  • Cold and snowing
and as such I am NOT TO BE LEFT ALONE in stores that sell anything that is green or red or tartan plaid, or shiny, or that is made of velvet, or fur, or has bows on it, or snowflakes, or depicts Santa, reindeer, elves or anything wearing a Santa hat, EVEN if I have a legitimate reason for being there.
Take, for example, my current need for winter boots due to the fourth bullet point in the above list. I don't own decent shoes for winter. All I have are my chucks, my loafers for work, several pairs of high heeled boots inappropriate for walking in snow (or, in fact, at all) and a few pairs of dress shoes that are not at all designed for traction. So I need some warm, weatherproof shoes with decent traction lest I fall down and break my ass (which I have been assured is not my job and best left to someone else). So I tried, I really, really tried, to find said footwear at Payless Shoes and also at Old Navy. What I didn't take into account on this mission was that the current fashion is such that all the "boots" are made out of sweaters and apparently designed to make everyone look like a cartoon Eskimo. This appears to be all anyone is selling this year. I don't want cartoon shoes that will leave me with wet feet, I want regular black boots like a normal person, one who is not singing and turning cartwheels in the latest Gap commercial on tv.
BrownsFan had helpfully suggested that I try going to Sears. Which was great - I did find black winter boots that don't get wet or turn my feet into Japanimation art. But, Sears is also a department store, one that specializes in cheap, cute, shiny things like socks with kitties wearing Santa hats, or Santa socks with little puffy balls, or panties that read "Naughty" across the front, or (and this is the coup de grace) matching bra and panty sets in red velvet with white ruffles and bows in the front. Given that I was all alone with no one to stop me, do you think that I bought every single one of those things? YES OF COURSE I DID because I am amberance, leader of the Christmas freaks, lord of the shiny baubles, keeper of the chalice of holiday cheer. And now, dry footed underpants spazz. You can't stop me. You can only hope to contain me.

Thursday, December 03, 2009


So this year, the thing I learned about NaBloPoMo was that I can't do it without a laptop*, particularly in a month that contains Thanksgiving weekend and two trips to St. Louis. I will try this again next year.

Coming soon to a Bizzybiz near you:

  • A night out in the suburbs with A Kangaroo Court and friends
  • photos of my most excellent of Christmas apparel creations EVER
  • holiday cheer
  • possibly a recap of my night in with the gorilla tomorrow night, if there is anything good to recount and i can remember it

*social life.

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Happy Fakesgiving!

Fakesgiving dinner* is always better when it follows that whore Ann Arbor taking it in the ass for the 6th year in a row.

In only slightly related news, given that Thanksgiving falls in the middle of the 40 Days I have decided to start calling it Practice Christmas.

*Fakesgiving is an invention of Mrs. Sizemore and Fancy. It is basically Thanksgiving with friends instead of family because friends are the family you choose.

Friday, November 20, 2009

M-I Crooked Letter Crooked Letter O-U-R-I

I will shortly be hopping a train back to the Lou in order to be at Cap and Mrs. Sizemore's place in time for Ohio State/Michigan football and Fakesgiving tomorrow. And then on Sunday there is Christmas decorating to be done. YYYEEEESSSSSSSS.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

In Which We All Live Inside A Kaleidoscope

me: motherboard=broken
insert frownyface here

fish: How much to fix?

me: $250ish

fish: Are you gonna do it?

me: what are my alternatives?

fish: Find $750 more and buy a mac

me: someday...someday in the distant future i will be able to afford you making me a mac convert

fish: I can't wait for the future. The problem is, when we reach the future and have nothing to look forward to, what will we call it? Can we still just call it the future? Like, "Gosh, I'm so glad we live in The Future"

me: i think that is the best solution. either that or we can look forward to an apocalyptic war and a return to an agrarian society

fish: I just want life to be like it was in those fruitopia commercials
Seemed colorful and tasty

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Stitchus Interruptus

Back before my angel kitty Kristen died, we used to spend the cold winter nights cuddled up on the couch together. There was usually some football on or something. I would be cross-stitching some dorky Christmas thing and Kristen would lay in my lap on top of a blanket and calmly watch either me or the television (depending on which way she was facing) and purr contentedly. These are some of my favorite memories of her.

Now I know, I KNOW that it's a bad idea to compare my new cat to my old one because they are two completely different cats, and I love Angela just as much as I loved Kristen. But I was really really hoping that, like Kristen, Angie would enjoy laying in mommy's nice warm lap at night while she was sewing. What I did not take into account is that my new cat is a minion of the devil. I can't sew at home anymore unless I wait for her to fall asleep. This is because if she sees me with thread, her reaction is to glare at me as if to say "WTF? All string in the house is MINE!" before launching herself at me and ferociously attacking my stitching. EVERY DAMN TIME. She's lucky it's the 40 Days of Christmas, otherwise the next thing I'd be sewing is a tiny kitty straight jacket.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Nothing Doing

I will not be talking about last night's Browns game today. Not today, and not ever. Because, I mean, there is disappointing and then there is jaw droppingly atrocious. And that game was worse than either of those things. I just, I have no words.

Monday, November 16, 2009

It's Time!

On the first day of the 40 Days of Christmas, my true love gave to me...

Nothing, because outside of the Liz crowd, everyone I know thinks the 40 Days of Christmas is a stupid idea. Not to mention an annoying one. So far today, BrownsFan and Coworker have both made fun of me for being dressed like a kindergarten teacher in my snowman overall dress, the comic called me an "xmas pisshead" and one of my trivia friends had the nerve to "dislike" my Facebook status. The nerve of some people.

The important thing is that I DO NOT CARE. Today is the first day of Christmas and it is going to be glorious.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

AFC North Musings

This just in: the Bengals, as in the CINCINNATI Bengals, have swept the Steelers this year as of this afternoon. (Suck it TupperDoug and Becca.) They have also swept the Ravens and might just pull out a division win. I know, right? It really couldn't happen to a better rival. If the Browns can't win it (and as far as I can tell they never ever EVER will) then the Bengals are obviously the next best choice.

Now if only the Browns wouldn't embarrass themselves on national television tomorrow. A girl can dream.

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Apparently I Could Get Museum Passes Too

BrownsFan points out that I could blog on the weekends with ease if I had a library card. Also that I could check books out of the library instead of buying them. Of course, this seems to involve speaking to a librarian and is therefore impossible to handle on my own. If anyone would like to volunteer to talk to the librarian on my behalf while I stand behind you cowering I'd be very grateful.

Friday, November 13, 2009

Airing Of The Grievances

One year at my birthday party (speaking of my birthday, which, as a reminder, is two months from yesterday)back when Cap, Kelly, Simmy and I were kids, we ran into a bit of a problem and being the bright and creative children that we were, set about trying to solve it with a ridiculous plan that only a group of crazy children could come up with.

The problem, you see, was that we wanted cake and ice cream and we were being made to wait what we felt was an outrageously lengthy amount of time. I think the issue was that we were waiting on a couple of relatives that were on their way, but hadn't shown up yet. We'd asked about it several times and kept being told, "Not yet, we have to wait for so-and-so to get here" and it was starting to get exasperating. As I recall, I don't think I'd opened presents yet either for the same reason, so we were all starting to get antsy on two accounts. The last time we asked, we were finally told no AND to stop asking. We retreated to my room to ponder another way to try and get our way.

What we came up with was that we would go on strike. I don't know what led us to the conclusion that this might work. For starters, we clearly had no idea what a strike even was. We weren't a union, after all. Hell, we weren't even responsible for any party time chores like dish washing that we could threaten to not do. We had absolutely nothing against which to leverage our demands. All we knew was it involved signs and marching, and that when the people on tv did it they seemed to eventually get their way.

We set about making our placards. We grabbed the markers and all of the poster board in the house that was meant for school projects and colorfully wrote on them things like "Presents NOW!" and "We want cake and ice cream!" Some of them we poked holes in the top and tied them together with yarn to make sandwich boards. When all was ready, we took our messages and marched down the stairs and into the dining room with them shouting "Kids on strike! Kids on strike!" certain that this was the answer.

It was not. The adults were not at all convinced that our efforts warranted dessert. What they were certain of was that we were fucking hilarious. They laughed at us until tears ran down their faces, and while normally we would have been pleased to have entertained everyone so well, on this occasion we were very put out by it because we were being absolutely serious. It was not the reaction we expected or wanted and when they stopped laughing long enough to say again "No, you're not getting cake" we turned and, defeated, trudged back up to my room. We didn't know what to do. We had no other plan. At some point we went downstairs and tried it again, hoping that they would give us cake because we were cute and hilarious, but we were told it was only funny the first time.

I don't remember much else from that day. We must have gotten the cake and ice cream eventually, otherwise I would REALLY remember that day as "the day I got fucked out of cake on my birthday". Oh and don't worry, on my birthday this year (in two months) you won't have to go on strike to avoid getting fucked out of birthday cake - I will have it ready and waiting when you show up with your pointy hats to sing to me.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

It's Coming! It's Coming!

I wanted to let everyone know that today marks two months until that most glorious of days - my birthday. I just wanted to make sure that everyone has plenty of time to prepare. With Thanksgiving upon us and Christmas right around the corner, I understand how easy it would be to forget and let it slip through the cracks, but have no fear! I will make sure to update you periodically as my birthday approaches so you can ready yourself for the festival of cake and ice cream and plan your outfit around the color of the party hats I'm going to make all of you wear. And Christmas caroling is a great warm up for all the "Happy Birthday" and "For She's a Jolly Good Fellow" you'll be singing (I need to find a way to combine "Happy Birthday" with "99 Bottles of Beer on the Wall" so it will last longer. Whose idea was it to have such a ridiculously short song at birthday celebrations? Asshat). So again, let me just reiterate: There are two months until my birthday. Get ready.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Veterans Day

Many, MANY thanks to Eric, Marcus, Erin, Machetti, my dad, John K., Uncle John, both my grandfathers and everyone else who has served their country in the military. You are remarkable. Thank you so much.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

For She Was A Jolly Good Fellow

Happy Birthday to my mom, who would have been 61 today and most likely cross-stitching or baking something. Thanks for not naming me Noel or something equally stupid.

Monday, November 09, 2009

I Am Writing. No, I Mean Actually Writing. Like With A Pen And A Sheet Of Paper.

Another thing that sucks about this particular NaBloPoMo is that while I was in St. Louis, my laptop became broken (the suspect list is limited - I live with one other human and one cat) meaning that until I have it repaired or (and I hope not) have to replace the whole thing, all weekend/holiday posts will have to be backdated. I promise* I will write them out on paper on the appropriate days just like a grown up responsible blogger (or rather, just like a grown up responsible blogger with grown up responsible roommates. Ahem).

*not really, but I'll try.

Sunday, November 08, 2009

Massive Boobies!

Great! Now that I have your attention...

After driving back from St. Louis this afternoon, I took the comic to Kuma's Corner per his request for a "huge fuck off burger the likes of which you can only get in the States." Because really where else was there to take him after a request like that? And I think that, while I may have met or exceeded his expectations for this meal he'd waited for all week, it's possible he will never recover from it as even now he is sprawled on my couch moaning about the hugeness of it. But that's not really what I want to tell you about. What I DO want to tell you about is this:

The Haunted World of El Superbeasto.

The Haunted World of El Superbeasto is the feature length cartoon the comic and I were watching with the sound off and subtitles whilst sitting at the bar trying to kill ourselves with meat. But even with no sound it was one of the funniest things I have ever seen. It is also the filthiest cartoon I've seen since The Down and Dirty Duck. I can only assume it gets better with the sound as a) it is a film by Rob Zombie and b) some kid in line for the bathroom told me it was even better with the sound. Kids in line for a piss don't make shit up, I assure you. I highly, HIGHLY recommend this film for anyone with a sense of humor and/or questionable morals.

And yes it does have massive, albeit cartoon boobies, so that wasn't entirely a ploy just to get you to read this post.

Saturday, November 07, 2009

Shut Down

Mrs. Sizemore: High five!

The comic: Are you a child?

Friday, November 06, 2009

Out Of Office Reply

I am in St. Louis and will likely be backdating posts to cover all the days I'm here when I get back. Yes, I know that is cheating. In the meantime, please enjoy this brilliant Win in preparation for the 40 Days of Christmas coming up in a few short weeks.

Thursday, November 05, 2009

Remember, Remember The 5th Of November

It's Guy Fawkes Day. Go make yourself a bonfire.

P.S. If you are an American and don't know any English people or haven't seen the movie or read the comic book "V for Vendetta", then look go look up Guy Fawkes Night on Wikipedia, THEN go make yourself a bonfire.

Wednesday, November 04, 2009

Rebirth of Slick (Beverages, That Is)

Last night I went to Tai's because the comic was in town and because we would be in St. Louis on Thursday and therefore not at Tai's. And I got some of the best news I've had in a long time.

Back in the day not so long ago, there was a Star Trek museum inside the Las Vegas Hilton. It was filled with trekness like model ships hanging from the ceiling, people dressed and in character as different species from the show (a borg once asked me if I required "photo-replication" before posing for a picture with me) and, most importantly, Quark's Bar. The reason why Quark's Bar was so important was because it was home to the greatest mixed drink of all time: the Warp Core Breach. It came in an orb as big as your head, bubbled and foamed from the dry ice in it, tasted like love and rainbows and the best sex you ever had and was notorious for getting the Tai's crew fucked up enough to dance in the taxi line and then threaten the life of the driver (ok, both of those were MrSteve, but really it could have been anyone). For many of us* it was half the point of going to Las Vegas in the first place. You can view a fuzzy video of a bunch of not very entertaining guys drinking the smaller sized one here.

But then tragedy struck - the Star Trek museum closed and it took Quark's Bar and our beloved Warp Core Breach with it. There was much rending of garments and gnashing of teeth. I feared one of the greatest chapters in my life was over and gone for good.

So what's my wonderful news? Big Charlie, a connoisseur of the Warp Core Breach and one who imbibed it in astonishing volumes, has spent the last year or so since the museum closed experimenting and has finally perfected the recipe for the Warp Core Breach. He doesn't have any dry ice, but I suspect I can provide my own for this momentous event: the Warp Core Breach Resurrection.

Thank you Charlie, thank you!


Tuesday, November 03, 2009

Just to Let You Know...

...NaBloPoMo sucks when you have out of town company and are on vacation.

Monday, November 02, 2009

Bits and Bobs

Having absolutely nothing to say for NaBloPoMo, I went into my trusty notebook (the one that if you know me in real life and not just internetland you have most likely seen me pull out of my purse to write something down at completely inappropriate times) looking for nuggets to expand on and what I found was that I still have absolutely nothing to say for NaBloPoMo.

What I DO have are my typical disjointed notes that I wrote down most likely when I was drunk and not containing nearly enough information to remind me of what I wanted to remember. And because I can't think of anything else to say, those notes are below:

-Will on sticking it in your ear: "Everyone wants to tickle your brain."

-slutty Mona Lisa

-rectums are amazing!

-shit jeff wants me to remember: Hand Me Down

-things you can buy out of a trench coat in Amsterdam

I must lead a very interesting life. I wish I could be sure.

Sunday, November 01, 2009

On Laziness And The Pursuit of Non-laziness

Right then, so, two things:

1. I have once again let slip by the anniversary of this blog. Happy belated 5th birthday Bizzybizzers. It's very kind of you to stick with me. Sorry I suck at posting. But speaking of not posting

2. It is NaBloPoMo and I will be BloPoing every day all month long. I know, I know, it's gimmicky and lame, but the thing is, it forces me to spend a part of every day writing and in the long run I end up posting more ofter during the rest of the year than I otherwise would. What I need to have is a National Blog Posting Year, however this wouldn't entirely fit in with the cutesy rhyming scheme as "Yo" is not and never has been short for year. Also, I have already failed at this much like I did last year and will be backdating the first two posts because I'm sneaky like that. And anyway the principle is still sound.

That is all. Please carry on with whatever far more entertaining thing you were doing before your sudden inexplicable urge to see if anything had been posted to Bizzybiz (this is exactly how it works in my mind).

Friday, October 16, 2009

MrSteve Totally Gets Me

Comments from MrSteve about yours truly:

"Just seen on TFLN (and it made me think of you) - "I love how my brain works. It's like being on drugs without the costly upkeep."

"Do you realize that the two most popular responses around you are the eye roll and the face palm?"

Thursday, October 08, 2009

In Which Amberance Has A "Meal" In Spite Of Herself

Eventually, most people who know me give up on trying to appeal to my rationality (which they will by then have discovered I don't possess) and instead will deal with me in the altered state of reality in which I live. I am grateful for these people. Without them I would likely starve.

Case in point: Last week I wandered into the office of BrownsFan because I was ravenously hungry but mentally incapable of purchasing food because all I had on me were $20s. Now, if you don't know me well, this will not seem like a problem, because if I have money, I can obviously buy food. The folks who DO know me have just collectively thought "Uh oh" because they all know the $20/$10 dilemma. The $20/$10 dilemma is this thing where I am a ridiculous asshat and won't break a $20 for anything that costs less than $10, and also will not pull out the plastic for anything that costs less than $10. Basically, if I want something that costs less than $10 and I don't already have a fistful of change and small bills, I'm screwed. And in this case hungry.

"I need you to convince me that not eating anything even though I'm hungry because I don't want to break a $20 is stupid," I informed BrowsFan. A rational appeal calls for a rational response doesn't it? No! No, it most certainly does not, and BrownsFan has known me long enough to realize that even if it seems like I want a logical answer, even if I specifically ask for one, I'm never going to buy into such hooey. And bless her, she didn't even try.

Instead she said, "It's Thursday today, which means you're going to the bar right? So since you're probably going to take a cab home, you're going to have to break that $20 later on tonight anyway. If you do it now, you won't have to ask the cab driver for change," which appealed to both my large bill asshattery AND my paralyzing fear of strangers. In the face of such a flawless argument, there was nothing for me to do but go to Walgreens and buy a bag of Chex Mix.

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Slutty Piety

The cake master: so what should i be for halloween?

Me: slutty something. the only costumes available for women are slut versions of other things

The cake master: i know, which is why i plan on making my own costume
i was thinking either nurse ratchet from from one flew over the cuckoos nest, or the pope, only with huge boobs

Me: the pope should always have huge boobs. i'd be more inclined to heed the pope if he had giant knockers

Thursday, September 24, 2009

That Should Just About Cover It

Chris G: I don't agree with what you do, but I approve of what you do because you do what you do.

Me: Yes, I do do what I do.

I'm Going Off The Rails On A Crazy Train

Once upon a time, when I was the frightened victim of a home invasion, I had this conversation with Fish:

Me: There's no spiders in the Loop.

Fish: I'm pretty sure that's not true.

For those keeping score at home, that makes it Fish and things that are trying to kill me 1, amberance nil.

I noticed the first one coming down the stairs at Quincy last Friday morning hanging from the overhead light. Not your standard yellowish brown house spider of run of the mill terrifyingness, but one of those big black ones with the huge fat asses that are clearly capable of devouring an infant in under two minutes or, more importantly, a grown woman in ten. Hanging from the light just waiting with patient malice for me to walk underneath it so it can jump on my head. Being that it is officially autumn now, I have prepared myself for spiders seeking a warmer environment, i.e. indoors or hanging off of a light, so the heart attack I had was relatively minor and I made a mental note to use the other stairs when I went home.

One of the things with me and the spiders is that these incidents do not leave me right away. When I encounter one I tend to relive it for hours and I am on heightened spider awareness for several days. I don't seem to be able to just shrug it off and forget about it. Because of this, when I went home that afternoon, my eyes were scanning every overhead light I would have to pass . I found another one on the other set of stairs. And another one on the walkway. And then, when I got on the platform, HOLY FUCKING SHIT THERE WERE DOZENS OF THEM. Every single light. I mean it, every one. And they were moving. Oh they were very busy spinning their evil death traps and plotting my demise. It was the longest wait for a train I have ever experienced.

Even when the train showed up the terror didn't stop. I was looking in the corners of the train, at the seat backs, the hand rails. I checked my jacket hood and my backpack. There was no way, I thought, no WAY with that many spiders and that many people for them to jump on, that they hadn't orchestrated a mass invasion of the transit system. I didn't see any more that day, but I didn't manage to stop thinking about it either. The situation was clear: I can't use the Quincy train station any longer. At least until mid winter.

"What are you going to do, walk to work?" asked the comic (who has thus far failed to grasp the depth of my fear) later that night when I told him.

"No, I'm going to start getting off at Washington/Wells."

"What if there are spiders there?" There are spiders there, I've checked. But there are far fewer of them, they are more spread out and the station is designed in such a way that I'm not forced to walk under the lights (a.k.a. gauntlet of terror). It is by no means a perfect solution. I still spend the ride home checking and rechecking all surface areas on myself and the train, and my nerves are still at Defcon 3 the entire time I'm standing on the platform, but I can handle it. So far. The comic has decided that he prefers sexy blonde ponytail Amber to the pile of crazy you all have just experienced. "I'll leave bananas Amber for someone else," he said. That, good people, would be you.

Monday, August 31, 2009

Re: Boobs

Conversations at Tai's frequently involve boobs. To wit:

The bartender (to Teacher Charlie): You like big boobs.

Me: That's why he doesn't hit on me.

Teacher Charlie: No, actually I'm more of an ass man than a boob man.

Me: Oh. Well then why DON'T you hit on me? My ass is cute.

Teacher Charlie: It is, but I can't hit on you, you already know I'm a sleaze.


Me (arguing about the relative attractiveness of myself and our friend who was asked to do Playboy): She has bigger boobs than me.

The Angry Scotsman: You have bigger boobs than me.

Me: I hope so.

The Angry Scotsman: But mine are hairier than yours.

Me: You hope so.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

I Can FEEL When Retail is Near. That's Why I Have to Go.

Fish: Where are we thinking for mattress shopping?

me: hell if i know, someplace known for their sale of mattresses i assume

Fish: Look, you have a vagina. Shopping is your expertise. I just bring my pocketbook

me: when, in the entire history of knowing each other, with the exception of going to ikea, have you ever known me to be all "omigod, let's go SHOPPING!"?

Fish: Never. I'm not arguing that YOU don't like shopping but your genes KNOW shopping. It's your bloodrite.
Imagine you are anakin
When you are born you don't know you have control over the force
But you do, because you have no father and George Lucas is terrible at drawing Jesus allegories
Hope this helps

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Bizzybiz Makes The Grade

There are three podcasts that I listen to which are each my favorite podcast assuming you are allowed to pick one per country, and they are also all somewhat related given that they are all friends with each other.

Punky! Radio you have heard of before because I simply cannot shut up about it. And if you thought I loved it before, you should see how much I love it now since going to England, where I got to be the mystery assistant on not one but two episodes during my visit. You could say I now have an intimate knowledge of the show.

Air Out My Shorts is a show by two loony Canadians (I am laughing at my own stupid joke there) where they read short stories sent in by listeners. The reading is usually butchered and the plot eviscerated by the two of them and it is really really funny.

Finally from right here in Chicago comes Total Talk Nonsense with Jon and Scott, a brilliant piece of talk show lunacy that is a great way to pass the hours at work, if you work at a company that is very very lenient about you listening to content that is not at all safe for work. It is both funny and intelligent, except for when it is hilariously stupid: I have convinced a dozen or so people to start listening to this show based on one infamous clip where Scott demonstrates his inability to read aloud (click on the clip called "Total Talk Nonsense Promo") and inadvertently invents a new word. Scott has also recently started a very well written blog that I have been enjoying for a few months.

These three podcasts are the gold standard by which I judge all other podcasts, including my own (assuming we ever do another one STEVE). So I was very surprised and happy when TTN's latest episode mentioned that I'd gone out to see their band at The Beacon Tap a couple of months ago. But even better than that was Jon's mention of this very blog and how much he likes it! Jon, thanks so much for the shout out and the compliment! And keep me in the loop because I would still love to Skype in to the show.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Amberance: Of Questionable Usefulness

me: oh so did i show you the new boots i bought?

H-town: no!

me: these

H-Town: holy schneikes
those are some sexy fishing waders
for the sexy fisherman in your life
can you come over and walk around on our front lawn to aerate it?

me: no problem
there's going to be a vinyl corset that goes with those when i find it

H-Town: yes
you'll be entirely waterproof

me: it's a dream of mine

H-town: don't sit on any old grandmother's vinyl couch, you'll be stuck forever

me: i can lay down on the grass and be a slip n slide

H-town: hahahaha
"honey, get the hose!"

me: hopefully no one will try to make me float on top of a pool all winter

H-town: hahaha
that'll be a skinny pool
hey, nice pool cover. oh that? that's actually amber
aaaaand scene

me: we're here all week

H-town: remove the vinyl cover before trying the veal, folks

Monday, August 17, 2009

Amberance: Fun and Social (No, I'm Serious)

It has taken me well over a week to sit down and write this post detailing the events of two Thursday nights ago. This is due as much to the fact that it took me nearly this long to recover from it as it is to my well documented laziness.

In the past several months, I have inexplicably developed a social life. My good friend MrTrivia is in large part responsible for this, having gotten me addicted to playing trivia at Witts and introducing me to some really cool people. Two weeks ago, our standing plans for Wednesday night trivia got canceled due to everyone but MrTrivia and me bailing. We decided that two people was not enough for trivia and decided to skip it for the week, leaving open the possibility of meeting up at Tai's the next day.

Thursday rolled around and it looked like it was going to be a typical Thursday with no MrTrivia due to this text message I received mid-afternoon: "I remember now why I got married. When my wife is here she makes me go to bed, but when she is out of town I stay up all night playing video games. Don't think I'll make it tonight." I had also gotten a text from MrSteve asking if I'd be around. MrSteve has gone and got himself a girlfriend and so understandably does not always show up for the Thursday ritual. I assumed he'd be showing for one and then heading off to visit his lady as per his recent custom. I was wrong on both accounts.

Shortly after I showed up for dinner, MrTrivia walked in. He had apparently texted everyone else we know as well, because they started showing up a few at a time. Notable amongst this group was Steve G. Steve G is one of Cap's fraternity brothers and is somewhat difficult to describe. He the kind of person where he shows up and you're excited to see him because you know the evening is going to be hilarious and then you regret it later when you've been thrown out of several bars due to his jackassery.

In the meantime, MrSteve had also showed and brought along his girlfriend, the actress. The significance of this cannot be overstated: MrSteve has done his very best to keep us from meeting for as long as possible because of some nebulous fear he has that Something Might Happen - at his expense. So his bringing her to Tai's on Thursday was a momentous occasion, which I marked by squealing and throwing my arms around her the second they walked through the door. Much as MrSteve had feared, the actress and I got on famously and spent most of the night talking while MrSteve made a David Byrne "My God, what have I done?" face.

By now there was so much activity that I had begun taking notes, despite knowing they were unlikely to make sense when I sobered up. Here are some:
  • "Shark guy: We just didn't know they would travel those kind of distances for sex. Me: What? Have you HAD sex?" It was shark week that week, and I was ODing on shark programming. I'd sucked the bartender in as well, and so we had it on in the bar. The show we were watching was about the mating habits of Great Whites, and the shark guy's comment led to me demanding that MrSteve look up the distance of how far I've been known to travel for a conquest on his iPhone. (I have traveled 1/7 of the total circumference of the earth. Eat that, sharks.)
  • "Paulblo!" I coined this term for our friend Pablo, who has recently discovered a discrepancy in his first name on several government documents. Some of them have him listed as Pablo, and others as Paul. He's been having a bit of a nightmare getting it sorted out. For the rest of us it's been really entertaining as we've all started treating him as if he were two separate people. Pablo declined to go out with us, so MrTrivia sent him a text: "Dear Paul, Pablo is being a douche. Meet us at Tai's."
  • "Steve G's phone: I have feelings for you! Fas. (e-mail [MrTrivia] and he'll explain)" I have no idea what this means. Neither does MrTrivia, I checked.
  • "[the actress]: It's an equation. A 39 cent kite times two engineers = you need to buy a more expensive kite. Me: Yeah, they need a kite like in The Kite Runner, but without the rape." MrSteve was telling us a story about how he and his brother struggled to get a cheap kite to fly. I was, naturally, looking for an opportunity to say something wholly inappropriate.
  • "Penis pancake!" MrTrivia cleared this one up the next day when I found a photo of a cock-shaped pancake in my e-mail.
Eventually, MrSteve and the actress went home, a bunch of girls Steve G. invited showed up, and MrTrivia and I stepped out so he could have a cigarette. We ended up having a very long conversation, during which Steve G. and the girls came outside. "Fuck it, let's go to Carol's," Steve said. By now I had run out of money, it was 1:30 a.m. and I just wanted to go home, but Mr "money is no object" Trivia was not having it so we said goodbye to the bartender and cabbed it over to Carol's. I had never been to Carol's before. It is a divey country bar with a 4 o'clock license, the worst beer selection in history and frightening looking barmaids and bouncers. They were having karaoke night and I had to spend 10 minutes explaining to MrTrivia that people who really sing do not do karaoke and I was not playing. Steve "G Money" was though and we suddenly remembered just how dangerous it is to let him have a microphone. He announced that he'd gotten divorced that morning (he hadn't), sang a horrible country song (badly) and then finished by telling everyone that what he said about the divorce wasn't true - his wife had fallen off a cliff and died (his wife was at home safe and sound and probably furious with him because she doesn't like him going to Tai's). Following this MrTrivia and I went outside where at some point I decided I really needed to be smoking. I immediately regretted that decision because there was no chocolate milk handy and I can't smoke without chocolate milk (it's my smokin' milk). While we were out there, Steve G. apparently decided he'd terrorized these people enough because he came outside and shouted "FUCK THIS! Let's go back to Tai's." We did.
It was now 3:00 a.m. I shocked, SHOCKED the entire staff with my entrance and the fact that I was still awake, let alone still out and still drinking. I don't remember much of what happened after that, except for a Steelers/Wolverines fan that wanted to take me to dinner (NO! A thousand times no!). At some point I wrote a note to myself which simply reads "titty fucking". I have no idea. The next thing I knew, the lights were up and everyone was being asked to leave. I stuck around, figuring at this point I might as well just catch a ride home with the bartender. Meanwhile out on the sidewalk, MrTrivia was trying to hail a cab so he and Steve G. could go out for breakfast, and Steve G. was putting his nipples on the window and waving at us. MrTrivia later told me this behavior continued at the diner where Steve G. offered the server a handjob for a free slinger. For my part I went home and left a bunch of insane comments on Facebook, then fell asleep for an hour in my clothes. The bartender had to wake me up for work, where I spent the day fueling my consciousness with Diet Coke and trying to will time to speed up so I could go home.
MrTrivia, thanks for a great night out and for not letting me give in to the temptation of being a responsible adult. It turns out I don't hate fun after all.

Friday, July 31, 2009

Snow Blows

Me: i hate this time of year, i really really do. why isn't it christmas?

Fish: Because it's august, duh. Why would they do christmas in august?

Me: because why not? i bet JoE would go to a christmas party in august

Fish: Nope. No snow. Snow is the holiday lubricant

Me: I thought booze was the holiday lubricant

Fish. No, snow is the lubricant that helps us slide into the moist crevasse of Christmas

Me: you're writing christmas porn

Fish: Or I'm just making holiday innuendos

Me: either way i disagree. snow is the lone drawback to the holiday season. it is cold and wet and makes me fall down

(it is in cahoots with alcohol)

Fish: I have no idea how you love Xmas and hate snow

Maybe you should move to the southern hemisphere

Me: oh, it's ok as long as i never have to go outside. but short of having groceries delivered and door to door laundry service, snow is just in my way and ruining my pants

Thursday, July 23, 2009

The Way To MrSteve's Heart Is Through His Lungs

MrSteve: I LOVE smoking! If smoking was a chick I'd be married by now!

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

The Perils of Knowing Very Funny People

Me: Know who else is clever? Heather. And guess what? She's coming to visit me next week!

Coworker: That's great!

Me: I know! She and Amy are going to stay with me on their way back home from visiting Amy's family. And we're going to Skype call [the comic] and it's going to be hilarious.

Coworker: Oh yeah, because she does improv, right? You're going to pee your pants.

Me: I always almost pee my pants when I talk to Heather. This is going to be like I'll pee my pants and have tears running out of my eyes and be vomiting all at the same time. I'll be a smoothie of secretions.

Wednesday, July 08, 2009

My Trip To The ER

Coming home from blighty, and for the last two days I was there, I found I was having a fair amount of back pain near the place where my right kidney resides. It got progressively worse and by Friday I could barely move. I was told repeatedly by many people to get my ass to the doctor, but I am stubborn and I was convinced all I needed was Tylenol, a heating pad and time. Until I realized I had started running a fever. Even then, I was sure it could wait til morning when the bartender would be home from work and I could drive myself there in the car. My neighbors Sugar and Spice were not having any of it. Spice called me from downstairs where they were watching the hockey game. "[Sugar] says she had a friend who died because of a kidney infection. She says if you don't come down here right now, [the Marine] is going to come up there and hog tie you and carry you to the car." Under those circumstances I allowed them to drive me to Northwestern (after the hockey game of course. Come on, it was Game 7 of the Stanley Cup!).
We arrived at Northwestern Emergency and checked me in. I got a fancy bracelet and was quickly called in to see the nurse. "I'm running a fever and I have a lot of pain in my right kidney," I told her.
"How do you know it's your kidney?" she asked.
This struck me as a trick question, but then again I had a fever. "Um, well, it's in the place where they taught me in biology class my kidney is supposed to be, so I just figured..." This seemed to be a satisfactory answer. She took my temperature (99.3), gave me a cup to pee in and told me to go to the desk if I suddenly got any worse.
I went and sat with Sugar and Spice. I didn't want to sit. I was in pain and had a fever and I wanted to lay down. But as all the seats in the waiting room have metal arms and it's not socially acceptable to lay on the floor in public I ended up curling myself into an upright fetal position and resting my head on my knees. And we waited.
And we waited.
The only good thing about having to go to the ER is that they are endlessly entertaining. There was a guy who worked there in some capacity (crowd control?) we named "Bernie Mac Guy" because he bore a resemblance to Bernie Mac and he was pimping out in a black suit of indeterminate material, a red shirt, a black tie and an incongruous pair of white latex gloves. I announced I wanted to marry him (fever). There was also a decrepit old man doing Sanford and Son impressions obnoxiously enough that Bernie Mac Guy told him if he didn't shut up he'd be put away in a room by himself. My favorite was a kid who may or may not have been in his mid twenties who I named Captain Vomit. Captain Vomit was so named because he was clearly going through severe withdrawal. He'd been issued a bed pan and every 15 minutes or so he would violently throw up into it and then button it with a pitiful moan of "Oooohh God, I want to die." God did not appear to be listening. But Captain Vomit is obviously much smarter than I, because as I was trying to get comfortable curled into a ball in a hard plastic chair, Captain Vomit took his bed pan and his blanket and lay down right in the middle of the waiting room floor. The staff yelled at him for some time to get up to no avail. Eventually they gave up and, get this people, wheeled a bed in for him to lay in so he would get off the floor. I was furious. "Is that it?" I complained to Spice. "All I had to do was lay on the fucking floor and they would have brought me a bed? Man, this is bullshit." And we waited.
While all this was going on, I was progressively getting worse. My legs were numb from my knees to my ass because of the way I was sitting, and the fever was making me too nauseous to hold my head up. Sugar and Spice were carrying on a conversation that I was listening to, but not much participating in because speaking (let alone thinking) was an effort. But apparently I tried. And apparently when I'm in a fever delirium I am fucking hilarious. It was related to me later (and mind you, I have almost no memory of any of this) that while they were talking I would appear to drift off to sleep, only to abruptly pop my head up every 20 minutes, make a completely inappropriate sexual comment, and immediately go back to sleep. Some of the things I allegedly said (anyone I'm related to would do well to stop reading right here and go to the next paragraph) are that "sperm is delicious!", that in fact I was a "come connoisseur" and therefore knew what I was talking about, and that a fun thing I found out I liked was being slapped in the face. I can't really argue with them - these are all things that I would definitely think, just not usually out loud.
At some point it became clear to the pair of them that I was in way worse shape than when I got there and Sugar talked the nurse into taking my temperature again, which had rocketed up to 102.2 over the two hours we'd been sitting there. The nurse gave me some Motrin and then I sat there and whined for the next 20 minutes about "when is it going to wooooooooork" until it kicked in. And we waited.
By this time it was past 1:30 in the morning and Sugar had taken a cab home. Spice and I sat discussing something (probably sex toys) for another hour or so until an enormous group of enormous people came in. They were all dressed like skanks, entirely in white, and every single one had blood on their clothes somewhere. It seemed they had been at a white party and several people had been stabbed, shot or both. One woman had poured herself into an outfit three sizes too small and made out of terrycloth with huge gold buttons down the front. "I want an outfit made out of a towel," I pouted to Spice, who pissed herself laughing. In the midst of this commotion my name was finally called.
The doctor, who was pleasantly surprised when we applauded her entrance to the room, told me I had a kidney infection and possibly a kidney stone, but that I would need a CT scan to find out about that last part. She then put me on a fluid drip and ran away with several vials of my blood. I was now very excited because 1) I love having an IV because it makes me feel important and 2) I had never had a CT scan before so I was curious and besides, how could a giant doughnut not be fun?
It turns out a CT scan is mostly just lonely because there's no one in there with you. The highlight was the contrast fluid. They ran it into my IV and a few seconds later everything from my neck to my vajay was really really hot for about 30 seconds. It was awesome. They did this twice. Boo-yah.
Anyway, long story even longer, I did not have a kidney stone so they gave me some antibiotics, an anti nausea and some Vicodin and sent me away. Total hospital time: 8 hours. Total hospital bill: just under $11,000. Hilarious moments I'm still giggling at a month later and that freak out the marine: Priceless.
Sugar and Spice: Thank you so much for out stubborning me and then sitting with me in the psych ward for the injured all night! You are both princesses among women.

Amberance: Victorious

H-town: be jealous, i get to work with a tortie all day today
me: be jealous, i polished a miniature toilet last night
H-town: wtf
ok, you win

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

My Trip To England

It took several days and a hospital visit, but I am now fully recovered from my trip to England.

I was graciously hosted by the comic who has a lovely flat and is a fucking ridiculous cook. RIDICULOUS I tell you. Also he has an absolutely enormous stereo, handy since music is why I know him in the first place. Also he watches Voyager, which is just flat out fucking awesome.

Speaking of Star Trek, I have a new best friend and her name is, for real, Sulu. I would have given her a blog name, but come on, the woman's name is Sulu! I met Sulu and her husband G on the first Wednesday I was there, at The Globe in Letchworth. Together we enjoyed an evening of acoustic music, and by enjoyed I mostly mean tolerated, with one notable exception. A slightly unhinged, attractive blond Iclandic woman took the stage with her band. She was quickly dubbed "Bjork Stefani". We were in awe of her. Not because she was any good, although Sulu did buy her CD, but because she was just so completely insane. She went off talking on these weird tangents about pictures of people holding up a fish in the newspaper vs. the murder rate in England, or her preference of vanilla over honey. She also yelled at one woman in the audience for talking because she couldn't hear her backup singers which was awesome.

The following day, Sulu and I attended a corset party together, thus cementing our bond as best friends as we have now seen each other topless. Trying on corsets is fun. Trying on waspies is funner (as explained by the corseter, a waspy holds in the bits you don't want to see and lets out the bits you do want to see. Or less britishly, it cinches your waist while your boobs hang out). I briefly had the waist of Scarlett O'Hara. This entire exercise led nicely into our Monday evening trip to the sex toy shop together. Sulu couldn't wait to get me there as there were huge walls filled with toys. The collection was indeed extensive, but I was more impressed with two other things: 1. The fact that Sulu is on a first name basis and received a hug from the proprietor of the establishment, and 2. That we were served cappuccino while we shopped. Clearly the best sex shop the entire world over. I bought things. Oh yes.

Apart from my time with Sulu I mostly drank a lot. Now, "a lot" by my usual standards is actually not all that much due to the fact that I am a wuss and apparently that I am an American, or as the comic calls us, "sipping losers" (to be fair, he has never been to Tai's on a Saturday night so he doesn't have all the information). But even by his standards it was excessive. This started with the discovery that Strongbow in England is twice as strong as it is here, but equally as delicious. It continued the next night with the fact that I never do shots being thrown straight out the window for four rounds of sambuca in 15 minutes. (As the fourth round was being poured I stubbornly refused to drink any more. This was shot down by the hairdresser: "You HAVE to drink it. You're in England now.") The next night, away went my habit of going to one bar and planting myself there, as my "official" night out in Hitchin (we'd been there the night before) took us to four or five pubs, including one in which we walked in, ordered a shot of sambuca, drank it, and immediately fucked off. The next night it was back at The Globe because one of my favorite bands from Punky! Radio, the New Town Centres was playing there. The New Town Centres make you dance. Dancing makes you need a drink. It was a vicious cycle that ended in me trying to walk home barefoot. The next night out in Luton where we stayed overnight in a bar was the final nail in the coffin. Operations in my liver came to a screeching halt and a moratorium on alcohol was called for the following day. (This did not work. We found a really cool pub when we were being touristy in London that was across the street from itself. It was obvious we needed a glass of wine.) The last night was the comic's new cabaret show in London so I took it easy with one cider and an amaretto graciously supplied by Nat the Evil Lesbian, who struck me as not evil at all, but then again I haven't known her very long.

The day in London was excellent. Aside from the pub that is across the street from itself, we also saw a man with a bright yellow ass and an assortment of odd street performers near the London Eye. I had started off intending to actually get on the Eye until I saw the line, which was clearly hours long. "Absolutely fuck off no way," I said. This being the first time the comic had heard me over-emphasize something for dramatic effect, he found it hilarious and retold the story a number of times. I also had a Flake 99. A Flake 99 is an ice cream cone with a Flake bar stuck in it. Some of you may be aware of my total obsession with this candy bar. It was like a dream come true.

The absolute top, number one highlight of the entire trip happened on the night out in Luton at The Black Horse and I have yet to shut up about it. The comic had played a few songs on the jukebox and we were sitting and listening to them before heading over to the California Inn (it has shiny, sparkly things, thumpy music and there was someone walking around in a giant bunny head - it is exactly like California). A song started that sounded oddly familiar but that I couldn't place. The comic said, "I played this for you," having no idea that I'd ever heard it before. The second I heard the first line "I've been going out with a gir-rl, her name is Julie" I freaked out. Jilted John is the cornerstone of the soundtrack to my childhood. Kelly and Simmy's dad had brought the single over with him when they moved here from England. The four of us were absolutely OBSESSED with this song. We listened to it constantly. We sang it ourselves when we didn't have the record handy. We included it on our fake radio station Power 8000. I was immediately overwhelmed with an urge to call Kelly, but couldn't because my phone doesn't work in England. I settled for leaving it as a Facebook status the next day and insisting that the three of them leave comments. It was fucking phenomenal.

I spent the flight home wishing I wasn't on it, both because I didn't want to go home and because of this weird back pain I'd started having the day before. As it turned out I came back from England with more than just a new corset, a new glass dildo and a bottle of Abbot Ale. But that's an entirely different story.

Picking on Sick People Makes You An Oily Cat Wank

Friday night, pre-hospital. I am running an approximately 100.1 degree fever.

Fish: Who is winning game 7? I could change over but I never change away from baseball to hockey. Personal rule.

Me: Pittsburgh, 1-nil.

Fish: Just because you went to England doesn't mean you say nil now. Welcome to's called zero.

Me: I also say mental. And knackered. And what's all this then?

Fish: The last is Eddie Izzard. The other two aren't words. It's're feverish.

Monday, June 15, 2009

Sex Kittens

I just renewed my subscription to Playboy by sending them a check with a picture of kittens on it. It may be the Vicodin, but this strikes me as hilarious.

I'll explain the Vicodin shortly. I'm not typing so well right now.

P.S. Also used a Yoda postage stamp. They may not send me the magazine anymore on principle.

Friday, June 05, 2009

Amberance: Automated Out Of Office Response

I have many funny thing to say. Many. Unfortunately I'm not going to write any of them at this time because I am too busy coming up with more of them while I'm in England. Oh by the way, I'm in England.

Details next week.

In the meantime, please amuse yourself by popping over to Fuck You, Penguin or your favorite (or favourite depending on your location) berating of cute things website.

Friday, May 29, 2009

Vague Descriptions From Amtrak

Mrs. Sizemore: i shall make cake when you visit
you are coming on which day? the 18th?

me: i think so, did i send you the train reservation e-mail?

Mrs. Sizemore: nopes

me: you can has now!

Mrs. Sizemore: yaaaays
Passenger 1: Amber [redacted] (Adult)

me: hahahahaha awesome

Mrs. Sizemore: amtrak tells lies

me: clearly

Mrs. Sizemore: unless they mean adult like, adult adult
x-rated and whatnot

me: right, i'll have to ask ;)

Mrs. Sizemore: Dear Train People,
Please clarify. Are you miscategorizing me, or do you know me all too well?
Thank you,

me: perfect

And Then A Velociraptorbyte.

Me: What's the next biggest unit after a terabyte?
The agent: A pterodactylbyte.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Amber and The Intern: Bad Wedding Guests

The intern: i had to give a speech at a wedding this weekend - terrifying stuff

Me: no doubt. did you mess up like my friend did? she said "Simone's birthday" instead of "Simone's wedding". We started singing "Happy Birthday" because we are assholes

The intern: haha; that's hysterical; luckily i didn't munson it; i figured if I started to freeze i would just start balling - but it went well so i was relieved

Me: balling like crying or balling like having sex with the nearest female? because that would have been hilarious
unless it was the bride, then not so much

The intern: haha, that might have been a bit awkward
in an awesome way

Friday, May 22, 2009

In Which Amberance Briefly Grows A Pair

You know it's going to be just a stellar night when you have to use the phrase "DO NOT FUCKING TOUCH ME" before 9 p.m.

The whole thing seemed routine enough. It was Thursday night and therefore I was at Tai's having dinner with my roommate watching the Cubs lose and the Penguins win. When a guy came in by himself, shook the bartender's hand and sat down a couple stools away from me I thought nothing of it, because why would I? Apart from the fact that he was wearing his blue tooth earpiece like a fashion accessory he appeared fairly normal. Since this is being posted on Bizzybiz, you already know otherwise.

It became clear pretty quickly that he was completely inebretarded. In the space of twenty minutes he tried to shake the bartender's hand at least a dozen times. He also started in on me, wanting to know if I would play pool with him (no) and if I thought he was attractive (no), and then announcing "Giiiirrrrlll, you are fine!" (I was.) My terse answers, refusal to look at him directly and outright ignoring him did not serve as much of a deterrent.

And then he came over and put his hand on my arm.

Here's the thing with that, and actually there are two: 1) If you don't cut off that behavior immediately in drunks it will escalate until you find yourself being mauled, but more importantly 2) I have a thing about strangers touching me. It is that strangers should not be touching me. At all. Ever. So when this asshat touched my arm I screamed at him. "DO NOT FUCKING TOUCH ME! I am not kidding you." which was followed somewhat anti-climatically by the bartender repeating more calmly "Don't touch her."* This was effective. Temporarily.

Moments later, in came Gene Honda and his dinner. And so the douchebaggery continued. "Dude!" bellowed the shithead. "Shake my hand bro!" By this time Gene had started eating rib tips. Gene explains that he can't shake his hand right then, and also that he is trying to enjoy his dinner. Cockwad ignored this, and continued to try and shake a hand, get a hug, lean on, breathe on and generally irritate the crap out of Gene. The bartender said, "Leave the man alone, he's trying to eat his dinner." I said, "Get the fuck away from him, he's having his dinner." Gene said, "Listen, I don't know who you are. I am not going to shake your hand. I would like to eat my dinner and if you don't leave me alone I'm going to throw a bone at you."

In the meantime, other people started showing up in the bar. A guy came in with his girlfriend and started to shoot pool and two girls appeared and were talking to the bartender. It is these distractions rather than our words that got him away from Gene so that he could eat. Unfortunately for them. From across the room I heard the girlfriend say, "Please don't touch me," and the guy say, "Are you serious? I'm standing right here!"

Gene finished his dinner and we went outside, him to smoke, me because Gene said he's not leaving me in there defenseless. (I love my friends.) While we were outside a small miracle occurred: One of our friends who happens to be a detective for the Chicago PD showed up with his wife. I was ecstatic and promptly glued myself to them. We went back inside and settled in to watch the show fucknuts was putting on. By this point he could barely stand and was speaking Spanish. Another woman walked in alone and someone immediately grabbed her and sat her down with a group of people, probably saving her life. Or at least her sanity.

Jackoff stood alone and surveyed the room, eyes settling on me. In a moment of clarity he appeared to recognized me as the bitch who yelled at him and started lurching toward us, yelling something at me in Spanish and knocking over other people's drinks all the way. People who know me well know that I rarely confront people and even more rarely raise my voice. I am not yelly, and hearing other people yell normally causes me to panic and try to hide in a corner. I don't know if it was the depth of my anger or the presence of the detective standing beside me, but all that went out the window and I snapped. "You have GOT to be kidding me. Are you fucking serious? STOP fucking talking to me." As he took another step toward me I continued, "And if you get any closer to me I SWEAR TO GOD I WILL FUCKING HIT YOU!" I'm pretty sure the people at the gas station across the street heard me. He stood there, grinning stupidly while I stared him down and waited, fully prepared to punch someone in the face for the first time ever in my life (along with the yelling, I also don't hit people). He stumbled backward and spilled a beer.

The bartender had had enough (right about now, or perhaps earlier, you're saying "Why didn't he just throw the shit eating prick out of the bar?" Because it was too early for the bouncers to be there, and the bartender wouldn't have been able to take him out on his own if he'd started fighting). "That's it," he said. "You're done. Get out of here right now." We all stood at the window and watched him leave, bobbing and weaving across four lanes of traffic, miraculously making it to the other side without collapsing or getting hit by a garbage truck...and getting into a truck. The detective and the bartender bolted out the door and across the street before I could finish saying, "No. Way. He is going to kill someone." Eventually, the detective got his keys, the bartender called him a cab, and we bribed the cab driver (who took one look at him and said "I don't want this guy in my cab") to take him to the address we found on his driver's license since he couldn't remember where he lived.

So, all in all, the night was bizarrely entertaining, the detective bought everyone a round, certain death was prevented and I was a total badass for about 12 seconds. Not a bad night. MrSteve lamented to me that he missed all the good stuff, and Fish wanted to know why I get to have all the fun. The answer comes to us from the detective, who broke the stunned silence by quipping "Only at Tai's." Indeed.

Post script: Several hours later, someone dropped off a woman outside who got in the truck and drove it away. His wife.

*It keeps reminding me of the scene in American Pie, with the lacrosse coach yelling at the team and the assistant coach standing behind him mumbling the last thing he said. "CulmiNAtion."