Wednesday, June 29, 2005

Salty, Sweet, Savory, Spicy

Ok, so I'm not hungry anymore, and will no longer be speaking in 3rd person caveman. I'll wait while you finish cheering.

All right, then.

I e-mailed that salad recipe posted below in "Food Addendum" to a co-worker friend, and lo and behold, she came in with it for the office today! She made a few changes, which I'll post below, and kept the jalapenos separate for those who wanted them.

Let me tell you, this stuff is food of the gods. Unbelievably good.

Drop everything right now, go to the store and buy the ingredients and then, in your car or on the bus on your way home, MAKE IT. I suppose you could wait until you got home to make it, but that's just lazy and uncommitted and I expect more from you, honestly.

Ok, here's the version she made:

Sweet, Spicy, Salty and Savory Salad

Dried organic figs
Dried organic apricots
Kalamata olives
Feta cheese
Orange zest
Jalapenos (she put these on the side for those who wanted them)
Toasted pistachios (she used toasted pine nuts instead)
Mesclun greens (the mix she bought had just a bit of cilantro in it, which just added to my euphoria)

Toss all ingredients in a vinaigrette of:
Sherry vinegar (she used red wine vinegar)
Extra virgin olive oil (first person who giggles, tosses their hair and says, "EVOO" gets a fork stuffed up their nose)
Dijon mustard
Lemon juice

That's it folks! Make it and bring it to your 4th of July parties and picnics, or enjoy it at home in the cool, cool air conditioning with a smile and a fork.

P.S. I tried that Walden Farms fat/sugar/calorie free chocolate sauce and marshmallow sauce. While I agree with my dearest Otter that it does indeed taste a little like poison, it's good enough (especially when you're desperate) and the chocolate stuff is actually pretty tasty on a banana.


Zigkvetch so hungry she posted the same entry twice!

ZigKvetch Hungry

ZigKvetch Hungry

Zigkvetch no eat breakfast. Zigkvetch hungry. Zigkvetch very hungry. RARR!

Monday, June 27, 2005

CNN Breaking News & CNN Breaking News 2, Electric Boogaloo

Breaking News #1: U.S. Supreme Court rules Ten Commandments displays are not allowed at courthouses.

Me: Hurrah! Separation of church and state does exist!

Breaking News #2: Following ruling barring Ten Commandments displays in courthouses, Supreme Court rules such displays are allowed at state capitols.

Me: The hell? Constitution what?

Here's the thing. I'm a big fan of the Ten Commandments. I don't mind seeing, reading or hearing the Ten Commandments. This is because I think they make sense, they're clear and concise, and they're a strong part of my belief system and born-religion. But what about those who do not share my belief system, born-religion, or even a religion based in Judeo-Christian beliefs or liturgy?

See, I'm also a big fan of religious freedom. And I thought the U.S.'s big claim to fame was religious freedom. And I thought that the Constitution spelled things out so that things made sense and were pretty clear and concise about the whole separation of church and state thing.

Religious freedom means more to me than just being able to safely practice your chosen religion without persecution. It means living in an environment where your beliefs are free from public displays of another religion being forced down your throat (even passively, i.e. a monument in front of a capitol building) in government or educational venues.

These two reports look like a compromise was made. I don't think religious freedom in any form should be compromised. I'm frustrated and trying to understand, as I am with so many things in this confusing world...

Saturday, June 25, 2005

Random, Random, Who's Got the Random?

  • I just tasted the strongest Mai Tai I've ever had. Mr. ZigKvetch had to drink it.
  • Fanta commercials make me die a little inside.
  • During the opera I just performed, one of the characters angrily calls another character a "cockalorum." I don't know what it means, but I love it and plan to call my enemies that from now on.
  • I love people who are all crusty and cranky on the outside with a heart of gold on the inside, and we got to know someone fitting that exact description, tonight. Funny as hell, too.
  • I am the turtle-whisperer. I recently stopped traffic in both directions on a street near my house twice in the same week to ensure the safe crossing of a couple of turtleacular (word of the day!) friends. The first one was rather wee, and I just picked him up and moved him over to a grassy knoll (no book depository folks- not to worry). The other one was freaking huge. Basketball-sized. I clapped my hands and stomped my feet behind him. The little buggers can actually move surprisingly fast when there's a big, goonie person behind them, holding up traffic and acting like a loon.
  • I love it when you're watching a movie or tv series and the bad guy makes that "Curses, foiled again!" fist of rage.
  • Dear Leanne, a sweet, wonderful friend of mine has a sweet, wonderful grandma who is very, very sick. I am keeping them both in my strongest prayers.
  • I am thrilled that my friend Pamela just had her baby and that after months and months of "knowing" that it was a girl, the baby showed his, um, assets at the 13th hour and, surprise, she now has a beautiful little boy! Mazel tov, and if anyone can appreciate the humor of this situation, it's Pamela and her husband. What a lucky little boy!
  • I would do just about anything for an It's-It ice cream cookie sandwich right now.
  • Nope, not pregnant, just overly-tired and emotional, and the food cravings are just as much a part of my day-to-day life as, say, my right arm.
  • Ben, I would be honored if you would use "waaaahmbulance."
  • The ZigKvetches might get a visit from MizzMozz and family, and Miss Sugarcookie over Labor Day weekend, and we couldn't be more excited! Huzzah!
  • One of the sweetest things I've heard in ages is that my tough, firefighter friend's little boy calls him "honey." And that it just melts dad's heart. I guess the little guy kept hearing mom refer to dad as "honey," and he decided that's what he'd call dad too.
  • One of the funniest things I've heard in ages is that my tough, firefighter friend's little boy accidentally hit dad in the groin with his first T-Ball swing (atta boy, Slugger!) and then went over to him and worriedly asked in his little voice, "Honey, are your balls ok?"
  • I really dig this blog-writing stuff.
  • Online communities are never drama-free.
  • I will sign off with this really cool picture of a Costa Rican volcano that my uncle, Larry sent me. His wife, my aunt, Noreen went to Costa Rica last year:

Wednesday, June 22, 2005


So, for no reason at all, I burst into tears last night right before bed. Mr. Zigkvetch let me soggify his arm. And then he said, "you don't even know why you're crying right now, do you?" And you know what? I didn't. It was nothing and everything. But I found it comforting that he knows me so well. And then he started snoring. But I love him anyway.

Monday, June 20, 2005

Food Addendum

I found this recipe on Leenkblog, an interesting blog by an interesting someone named Andrea who posts interesting links. Anyway, I'm not sure how I stumbled across it, but when I saw this recipe, I wept tears of joy. Sweet, spicy, salty savory in one dish? I'm in!

Dried organic figs and apricots, Kalamata olives, French feta cheese, capers, mint, orange zest, jalapenos, toasted pistachios and mesclun greens, tossed in a vinaigrette of honey, sherry vinegar, extra virgin olive oil, Dijon mustard and lemon juice.

Food, Glorious Food! (apologies to Oliver! fans)

So, we've been watching the Next Food Network Star challenge to find a new cooking show host. I hate the chick who cut her finger (Suzannah). I hate her with the ampage of a thousand souped-up blenders. If they pick her I'm going to sue the Food Network for creating a hostile work environment or something. A hostile tv-viewing environment? Anyway...

I love Dan & Steve, a gay couple with mad cooking skills and tons of charm and wit.

Dear Eric, they already have an Al Roker.

Hans is adorable and he's been such a good boy, taking everything the judges have given him as feedback and improving more and more each week. Bravo.

The rest can pretty much kiss my ass. (I'm such a lovely, sweet girl, aren't I?)

So I went a-trolling through Blogland tonight and found some wonderful food blogs:

Alton Brown, although he needs to get on the ball and post more. He writes just like he talks, which for me, is bliss.

Foodage, because who wouldn't love a gal who posts a recipe called "Crazy-Ass Salad?"

Jamie Oliver, again, he writes like talks, minus the charming/obnoxious (depending on your tastes) lispy-wet-lips thing he has going on.

And you know I dig Esurientes, whose current picture of a fruit tart makes me cry out with longing. And, like a good neighbor, she shares her excellent foodblog finds with a humongous list of foodblogs of every kind, including Is My Blog Burning, a recipe-ical (made up word of the day!) library of congress, if you will!

So, there you have it. Some food rambling from ZigKvetch. In blog form. Which is a lot neater than in person, because I tend to drool.

Saturday, June 18, 2005

Poor Bigfoot (Dedicated to the Big Man/Ape himself and also Nataliedee who obviously understands him like I do.)

Poor Bigfoot. What did he ever do to the people of Oklahoma? You never hear about Bigfoot eating people or dogs or menacing small children, or even TP-ing houses. Every encounter you hear about, he's running away or trying to frigging hide. He is obviously neat, tidy and private, as he seems to clean up after himself rather fastidiously (they never seem to find anything belonging to him-- no poo, stray hair, dirty dishes- nothing.).

So why are people so mean, going into the lake beds deep in the woods of Oklahoma? These Bigfoot hunters go out in the middle of the night to where poor Bigfoot was last seen, and shine their laser lights, tromp through what is probably his living room, and fire shots (I think they were tranquilizers or blanks, but STILL!). How would those Bigfootologists like it if Bigfoot came into their house in the middle of the night, making noise and shooting guns off and beaming laser beam lights at them? They'd probably do the human equivalent of what poor Bigfoot did in the TravelChannel special I saw tonight did: throw rocks at the intruders. Bigfoot is such a gentle guy, he didn't even hurt them with the rocks; he just tried to scare the big jerks off by throwing rocks in their general direction.

One guy was all, "until someone drags a body in, I won't believe it." Here's an idea... if you want to meet Bigfoot and you know he's shy, why not go into his alleged habitat and talk softly to him? Perhaps sing some soothing, comforting songs or play some inviting acoustic guitar? Maybe bring some fresh baked cookies, a casserole, a pie? Why go in all hostile and mean? I'd hide from you too, even if I was 9-feet tall, covered in wild hair and strong as 10 men. Seems we humans do this type of thing a lot.

Bigfoot is obviously a sensitive soul, and just wants to be left alone in Bigfootville doing his Bigfoot tasks in Bigfoot peace. I say we leave him alone. Poor Bigfoot.

Wednesday, June 15, 2005

Tired Like They Talk About

I am so tired. Work, teach, rehearse until 11/11:30. Lather, rinse, repeat.

It wouldn't be so bad if the opera was going well. But it's not. Of course it's going better than one would imagine if one takes into consideration that it's led by a hostile, egotistical, 88 year old crazy woman (more about her later).

Each rehearsal my good humor and mild manner (ok, I may be pushing it a little far with that) are sucked out of me by the petulant diva tantrums, the cast continually forgetting the lines they've had for months, the revolving door of pianists who take their own tempos and step all over the nice, supposed-to-be-solo wind lines, and the endless shouting, shrieking by the blame-throwing (not to be confused with flame-throwing) conductor. It's like a variation on a theme of "Waiting for Guffman."

I try not to let it bother me, but it does. It, in turn, frustrates, amuses to the point of giddiness, and angers me. I try to not care, but it's impossible. I don't want to see the group die, and I hate watching it be run into the ground. You know that saying, if you love something, set it free, yadda, yadda, yadda, free, free, set them free? How do you get that general concept across to an octogenarian whose life has been dedicated to this little opera company, who I am convinced doesn't see herself as a day over 40, and whose stubborness and unwillingness to listen to reason (probably the very things that got her through life so successfully) are pushing the group she loves closer and closer to ruin?

Why do I do it? Why not just leave? Why put up with the verbal abuse, headaches, stress, and exhaustion? Why put myself out there, going above and beyond the call of duty to help organize things, recruit musicians, even work on the program and create a master list of performers?

I don't know. I just don't know. And *yawns like a baby hippo* I'm too tired to think about it right now.

Oh, bullshit. I do know. I admire the woman. I admire her tenacity, her energy, cherry-brown hair dyed within inches of its life, and all of her other meshiggas. I admire that she's taken this on (no matter how ill-advisedly) while her husband is in the hospital sick. I love that there's such an old-fashioned little musical company out here in the sticks doing real opera. I love the music. I love the strange little group of "regulars": professional musicians (with far bigger fish to perform with) choosing to be in the same boat as me, continually showing up year after insane year to put up with the endless rehearsals (both in number and in length), crappy pay, and stress. And if we don't do it, who will? Honestly? No one. When she asks us to jump, as much as we'd like to answer with a hearty "go fuck yourself!" we can't. We say "how high?" and go on to the next act.

Friday, June 10, 2005

I Want a Divorce

Not from my dear Mr. Zigkvetch, though. (Perish the thought!)

No, I wish to divorce my fat.

I wish then to sue it for alimony, as I have been supporting its lazy ass for years by supplying free room and board in my belly. I figure it owes me, big time. Not to mention that even if this works and I get it to leave for good, the place is going to be a shambles and need some serious redecorating which isn't cheap, my friends!

I want it to gather its things and leave peacefully and end this stupid fighting. I'm tired of arguing with it, pleading with it, trying to just put up and live with it, accommodating it, and making sacrifices for it.

My fat has been an abusive cad, damaging my self-esteem and it even crossed the line and hurt me physically. Which is why I want to cut it out of my life for good. There will be no visitations, no reconciliation, no couple's therapy.

Fat, if you read this, I'm kicking you to the curb, you lowlife. Hit the road, Jack, and don't you come back no more.

Scenes from a Day at Jury Duty

In my tiny golf ball of a car, speeding to New Bedford's Superior Courthouse. Mr. Zigkvetch's strange mix cd blasting away: Wagner's Ride of the Valkyires, James Taylor, Eminem, Frank Zappa, Benny Goodman, Schumann played on a tuba, Cool & the Gang, Tower of Power and Elton John. The window is open because the AC barely works. Life is good.

In my tiny golf ball of a car, stuck in traffic, eyes terrified, staring at the minutes ticking away toward 8:30 am. Life is stressful.

In my tiny golf ball of a car, looking desperately for non-existent parking. There's a spot the size of a hot dog cart between two SUV behemoths- perfect! Life is good.

Into the courthouse I go, bemusedly looking at what others consider dressing appropriately for court: cutoffs, hoochie-mama tops and shorts, flip flops, stained, holey jeans. Through the metal detector, down the hall, up the stairs.

A surly woman tosses a form in my direction and mumbles that I need to fill it out. I don't blame her for being surly- like most New England courthouses, this one is old and there is no air-conditioning, not to mention the poor thing doesn't even have a real office- just a desk and some file cabinets at the end of a hallway.

Upon returning the form, I'm told to go wait in any room down the hall. I pass room after room, all filled with bleary-eyed jurors-to-be and take a seat on a bench in front of the last room. I open my Marie Claire and start to thumb through it. This is short-lived because there is one hyperactive moronic woman who decides to verbally throw herself at the poor woman next to her.

"And I had to get up early this morning to drop of the kids at school and my ex-husband once served on a jury and was on it for a week and hated it but it was interesting, but my current husband blah, blah, blah, snort, giggle, blah, blahity, blah blah, blah..."

The chorus of thought in that hallway was nearly deafening:

"Jesus lady, shut the hell up."

Next, we're herded downstairs and into the courtroom for a chat with Her Honor who seems really cool and like someone I'd enjoy working with. This is followed by a lame video explanation of jury duty presented by a judge, a female lawyer and a male lawyer who thinks he's Perry freaking Mason. And, back we're herded upstairs. Moo.

This time I get a seat at the table in the last room. The seat is padded and far more comfortable than the bench. The table has a variety of magazines for our reading pleasure, and I'm actually pretty impressed to see up-to-date editions of USWeekly, Star, People, Sports Illustrated, and that perennial favorite, Field and Stream. People lunge at the mags while I take out my book, "Hypocrite in a White Pouffy Dress." Susan Gilman is a riot, and I have to stifle my laughter several times so as not to scare the other jurors, as the only sound in this room full of people is the breeze rattling the blinds on the windows. Actually, that's not true. There was also the occasional sound of the attached bathroom door slamming (it was inevitable the way it was built), and the constant sound of people within and outside the room powering their cell phones up and then off again. Doodle-oodle-oo! Doodle-oodle-daaah. Over and over again.

Oh, and there was also some occasional snoring, which grew in number as people dropped off to slumber in the silence of the hours we were waiting. Finally, even Susie Gilman couldn't save me, and I plopped my head down on my purse and snoozed along with the crowd. When I awoke, people were chatting a little. I sat up and smiled at the people around me and told them that I hoped I hadn't snored, and if I had, that I was sorry. They laughed. Christ, I hope I didn't snore. Oh man, what if I accidentally pooted a little poot while I was sleeping? GAH! Oh well, nothing I could do about it now. I offered my Marie Claire to a thankful woman who had finished off all the tabloids and was looking fearfully at the ignored Field and Stream on the table. Hey, is it chauvanistic of me to be surprised that so many men went grabbing at the tabloids?

JURORS, FOLLOW ME. We were being bellowed at again. Back down the stairs again. Moo, I say!

This time, there was a young assistant DA, a fishy-looking (ok, I'll even say he looked like a shyster) lawyer in a typically ill-fitting suit, a maybe 20 year old kid in a suit, tattoo peaking out over his collar, looking nervous as hell, and an impeccably dressed stenographer, along with security. The judge introduced the players and the lawyers introduced themselves- DA-guy short, to-the-point, professional, and the other lawyer slimy and weaselly. A slimeweasel (there's a new word for you Paul!), if you will. The kid had allegedly been caught with a controlled substance (Oxy-codeine? I've heard of oxy-contin and I know what codeine is, but I'm clueless as to what oxy-codeine is all about.) with intent to sell. He was pleading not-guilty.

And then began the excrutiating process to pick the jury.

First came the group questions. If your answer was yes to any of the questions, you had to raise your little card and one of the security people (bailffs?) would read your number off. Do you know this defendant or his family? Did you work at the convenience store where this took place? Do you know either of these lawyers? Would you take anything a police officer says as the truth, no matter what? A few hands would go up here and there until, have you, an immediate family member or a close friend ever been addicted to a controlled substance that was either legal or illegal? It seemed as though half the room raised their hands.

Then came the calling of people's numbers, in order, from 1-1 on up. Some people were given a seat in the jury box, and some were conferred with by the judge and lawyers and then either sent to the jury box or dismissed. It went on and on. People of every color, size, shape and dress code marched by me. I would've liked to have been on a jury, except that this one wasn't going to finish in a day-- they would be doing this through at least next Monday. No thanks. Hyperactive-moron-woman from earlier was selected, and no lie, acted as if Bob Barker had just yelled for her to come on down on The Price is Right. Her hands clasped over her mouth, giggling and giddy. Did I say no thanks before? Really, REALLY no thanks now. After selecting, dismissing, selecting, dismissing, they finally had their jury and the judge asked the remaining 14 (12 + 2 alternates) if there was anything else they could think of that would prohibit their service. And one jerk raised his hand.

Everyone had to convene back on the other side of the desk to listen to him whine about hotel reservations and family coming in to town. The judge was annoyed and kept saying, hey, you'll be out of here by 4:30 each day and this really isn't relevant. Prior to the selection process, the judge had given us a spiel about the history of jury duty and how this was one of the only ways to affect democracy directly. And then she laid the guilt on extra thick and chunky, talking about 9/11 and our soldiers fighting in Iraq. Basically telling us they were asking for a few days in a courthouse from us while others had given or were risking their lives. I rolled my eyes at this. Surely people understood that this was their basic civic duty, and although a pain, nothing too impacting! Surely we didn't need to be guilted into participation! The one jerk changed my mind- obviously the judge knew what she was doing with that spiel.

In the end, he was set free, with a disgusted look and a dissmissive wave of the judge's hand. The process had to reconvene, and they finally had a jury when the guy 8-1 was called to the juror box. I was 10-1 and relieved.

Back in my tiny golf ball of a car, speeding down the highway with the window open, on my way home again. Life is good.

Wednesday, June 08, 2005

Why my dad is the coolest dad ever.

With Father's Day coming up, and since I kvetch, er, talk about my mom so much in here, I thought I'd tell you why my dad is the coolest dad ever.

He used to drive me to and from flute lessons in Oakland, CA, wicked early (that's right, wicked), every Saturday morning. He would put his CB (children of the 70s, you'll know what I'm talking about) in the car, and we would talk to each other and to big rig truckers all over the place. My handle was "SuperZiggy" (imagine!) and Dad's was "Big Bear." We used to have the best conversations on those drives. I used to call him my buddy.

He and I were in the Indian Princesses program through the YMCA (ok, it wasn't the most PC thing in the world, but it meant well at the time). It was so cool- it was a father/daughter organization, and we had our own "tribe." We were the Blackfoot tribe, and we'd meet once a month at a different father/daughter house to work on art/nature projects and learn about Native American culture, and especially that of our tribe. And then we'd eat those pink and white frosted circus animal cookies with the round sprinkles, and drink juice. Sometimes we'd go camping. We would sing "On Top of Spaghetti" until our lungs hurt. Once we caught a whole bunch of frogs and tried to smuggle them home in dixie cups. 15 minutes into the ride home, the dads found out and pulled over next to a lake so we could release them (well, the ones we could find). Poor Lisa's dad was picking dead frogs out of their station wagon for years. We went to real pow-wows and performed skits. I was always the start of a little play called, "I Threw Peanuts in the Mud Puddle." The punchline was that I was a kid... named "Peanuts."

My dad built me a doll house. I "helped," but let's be honest. I bitched and whined and wondered when I could go watch TV. What a dorky kid- I would spank myself if I could. Or at the very least send myself to my room with no dessert. I don't know if my dad knows how much I appreciated that doll house. And how much I ache with regret when I think about how I let it fall apart. Even now, at 35, my throat closes to think about it.

We built or made lots of things. Our first project was a red bird house when I was about 2. I thought it was really cool that the shiny little can of red paint bounced a little when you threw it down on the linoleum at Gemco. Imagine my amazement when it didn't bounce, but instead opened and splashed everywhere. I have a picture of the bath that came after that one- oy. We made model cars, a crystal radio, and landscaping for those cool electric trains that weren't quite mine. We polished rocks and always thought they were way too cool to put in the crappy vermeil jewelry settings the rock polisher came with. I helped him (and mom) put in the cement borders in our backyard (he even let me write my name in the cement!!), and we had a vegetable garden every year- everything from beans to corn to tons of tomatoes and zucchini.

My poor dad struggled like crazy to teach me math. The man is an electrical engineer and was given a daughter who still occasionally counts on her fingers. I don't know where he found the patience. I wanted so badly to be good at it for him. He always helped me with school work. Even while yelling at me, like the time I left a muy grande Spanish project until the last night of Winter vacation. The damn thing needed a 3-d cover, and I didn't have a clue what to do. Off dad went to the store. He came back with a bag of Skittles and some cotton. I made a map of whichever South American country I hurriedly had done the report on, and he and mom helped me (while admonishing me with wilting glares) glue on different colored Skittles for different exports. The cotton stood in for textiles. My dad taught me lots of stuff without actually sitting down and teaching me, too. Through his day to day actions I learned: ethics, morals, supportiveness, kindness, compassion, humor, work ethic, and generosity. Then there was the practical stuff like, how to drive a car, ride a bike, use tools, mow a lawn, balance my checkbook... ok, so I didn't pay enough attention to that last one.

Several years ago, my dad was travelling back and forth to Switzerland for work. We had a blast e-mailing each other, keeping each other company (Mr. ZigKvetch was often on tour) and cracking each other up. I have all the e-mails saved (I don't think he knows this), and want to put them together in a book for us someday.

In junior high, I got it into my head one February 13th, that I simply *HAD* to have a bunch of jaw breakers for each of my Valentine friends. And then my OCD kicked in and I started having a meltdown-- what if someone gave me a Valentine, and I didn't have something for them?! I'd need extra! And if I give one to all these people, I'm going to have to give one to so-and-so too or they'll feel left out. I cried out of sheer panic (I swear this wasn't a spoiled brat thing-- I was/am such a freakazoid). The man bought $30 worth of watermelon jaw breakers and helped me wrap each one in a little baggie with ribbon. He also let me cry on his shoulder when no one gave me a darned thing the next day. (Ok, that was a spoiled brat thing, but I was young and foolish.) This guy deserves some kind of award. A major award, even.

Dad was the one who accompanied me to NYC to audition for music schools. He was the lucky one who got to catch me when I burst into angry tears after the sham of an audition they put me through at one of the schools. He was also the one to take me out to dinner and then a concert at the 92nd Street Y that night so I could see a friend who was already attending that very school. On the plane coming home, I made my dad a friendship bracelet (huge in the mid-late 80s). I think he still carries it in his wallet.

If I may brag a little, I have to say that I take after him in a lot of ways. We both love Chinese food and could eat it everyday for every meal, without balking. We'll both try anything, food-wise. (Pigs feet? Check. Tripe? Check. Strange looking fungus thing we found at an Asian market? Check.) We both yell at stupid drivers inside our cars, although we know not to act on anything. We're both expert soup makers. Soup whisperers, if you will. We tend to walk the same way, and I notice that the older I get, the more I watch my temper suddenly flare up when I see an injustice. The nut doesn't fall far from the tree, I guess, but, I also have his compassion and his goofy sense of humor.

I could go on and on, but alas, I have to leave to go teach.

Let me just end by saying that my dad has always been bigger than life to me. Tall, broad shouldered, large build, deep laugh, twinkles in both eyes, strong like an ox, and the man knows at least a little something about everything in the universe. Health issues are inevitable the older you get, but no matter, my dad is exactly the same Daddy (actually I used to call him "Datty") on the inside as he always has been. Mushy? Yeah, I know. But it's my dad! And he's the coolest ever.

Monday, June 06, 2005

Strange Day

What an odd day. Yesterday I (and I'm really, really proud of this, so work with me here) planted a tiny vegetable and herb garden. And I did it all by myself, although Mr. ZigKvetch checked on me every few minutes, offering water and help. I planted a ton of tomatoes, bell peppers, hot peppers, cilantro, thyme, oregano and basil. It was quite an effort, but totally worth it, even if it only ends up being bunny food. And, no mosquito bites! I bought the an Off mosquito-be-gone-lantern and it worked like a charm. Who would've guessed that I had to go to an opera rehearsal to get re-eaten alive by the buzzing, blood-sucking little fuckers?

But that wasn't the weird day.

Even though rehearsal sucked and the 87-year-old conductor (you read me right) was even kookier than our last rehearsal. I came home frustrated and wired. I fell asleep around 2:30.

And so begins the weird day.

I awoke at 5:30, alert and ready to get up. For those of you who don't know me, this is an act of G-d. A miracle. Cue the singing glory of the angels. So of course, I tried to roll over and go back to sleep. No go. I got up and went downstairs and worked for awhile. Then, I went upstairs and crawled back into bed to read. I took a quick nap and I was up again and out of the house by 7:40.

Into work I go, with a spring in my step. I was in a good mood. On a Monday morning. On 3.5 hours of sleep. After a brutal rehearsal the night before. On the first day strictly back on my eating plan. On the first day of, well, a segment of the month when I'm not normally so chipper (reporting to you live from TMI Fest 2005).

And the first thing I did when I got in was clean my office. A co-worker checked on me several times to make sure I was ok. She was worried, as this was about as unlike me as it gets. Are you hearing the seraphim yet? They're yodeling.

And I stayed in a pretty good mood all day. With no caffeine in my system, just love in my heart, a clear mind (a clear mind, I say!) and plenty of energy. Seriously, what the hell is up with this? Did I mention the no caffeine thing? No. Caffeine.

At about 10 tonight I got home after teaching, brought in all the groceries and, although tired, was still in a good mood... until I listened to the answering machine and the crazed octogenarian conductor's infuriating message which filled my every pore with rage. But even then, I ate dinner, and Mr. ZigKvetch was especially understanding and kind, and here I am back in this... this... good mood.

Will wonders never cease? Hallelujah and amen. (yodel-ay-ee-hoo!)

Wednesday, June 01, 2005

Oh goody! A meme from MeganMegan!

Megan the wise and wonderful tagged me, so here goes nothing... more layers of Zig than you ever thought possible or wanted:

Name: Zig
Birth date: March 14, 1970
Current Location: My couch, under an olive and gold afghan (the blanket, not the hound)
Eye Color: Hazel with speckles. Please refrain from singing Kelly Clarkson.
Hair Color: Dark brown with remnants of blond highlights that are taking forever to grow out
Righty or Lefty: Righty although I "mouse" with my left hand.
Zodiac Sign: Pisces

Your heritage: German, Russian, Romanian, and according to my parents, Martian
Shoes you wore today: Black slide-on sandals
3 things I did today: Went to the dentist to get my new night guard, bought a ton of candy for my office, taught an awesome lesson on leadership.
Your fears: Spiders, losing people I love
Your perfect pizza: pepperoni and mushroom or pesto with roma tomatoes

Your most overused phrase: "Freaking____," and "you're a zoo."
Your thoughts first waking up: No! Shh!! No! Please! More sleep! Please! So tired!
Your best physical feature: My smile
Your best time: Nighttime
Your most missed memory: Being in better shape.

Pepsi or Coke: Can I pick Diet Cherry Vanilla Dr. Pepper aka "Nectar of the Gods?" If not, either will do.
McDonald's or Burger King: McDonald's fries, and Burger King's burgers, oh heck, let's just go to Taco Bell.
Single or group dates: Date? What is this "date" you speak of?
Adidas or Nike: Nike, I guess, but to be honest, I was thinking Payless Shoe Source
Silver or Gold: Silver.
Lipton Tea or Nestea: I'd prefer a bag, thanks. (No teabagging jokes, please)
Chocolate or vanilla: Vanilla topped with cold fudge (right, Mom?)

Smoke: No freaking way. It's hard to play the flute when you can't breathe.
Take showers: Yes.
Have a crush(es): Yes. And his name is Mr. ZigKvetch, although Jason Varitek ain't bad.
Think you've been in love: See question above. Stop before "although."
Like(d) high school?: Yep. It was stressful and awful and painful, but I wouldn't trade it for the world.
Want to get married: Again? No, never. I'm all set with the husband I've got. I was DYING to get married before I married Mr. ZigKvetch though.
Get motion sickness: Yes. I discovered this on a deep-sea fishing trip forever dubbed "Puke Fest '99." I remember trying to figure out a way to get a helicopter to come out and pick me up.
Think you're a health freak: AHAHAHAHA! I'm sorry, I mean, um, no. I'm trying to be healthier though.
Get along with your parents: Yes. They drive me to drink (ok, so it's tomato juice), but I love them and am extremely close to them.
Like thunderstorms: I did until lightning hit the house next door to mine in the early, early morning. I seriously believed we were under a nuclear attack. No lie- my period stopped for 3 months due to the trauma.
Play an instrument: Here's a shocker-- yes! Flute, piccolo, penny whistle. Yes, please, ask me about band camp.

Drank alcohol: Yes. You know what's really embarrassing but good? A Mike's Hard Lemonade with grenadine! Shh!
Gone on a date: Date? What is this "date" you speak of?
Gone to the mall: Yes, to get Mr. Zigkvetch and I new duds to wear to the drag show we went to with Paul.
Been on stage: Constantly.
Eaten an entire box of Oreos: No, but in the past I've held my own when challenged. (And by "challenged" I clearly mean that the oreos were just sitting on the counter.)
Eaten sushi: Yes, I live on sushi.
Gone skating: No. I'd love to go roller skating though.
Had a tan: Surely you jest. I go from pink to red to purple to peel. SPF 45 is my best friend.
Dyed your hair: Nope.

Been trashed or extremely intoxicated: Um, no never. Hey Mom, could you cover your eyes for a minute? Thanks. Yes I have. Both trashed and extremely intoxicated.
Changed who you were to fit in: Yes. I do it just about every day at work.
Thought about what age you hope to get married: Yes. I was going to be married by 25, and have a kid by 28. Isn't that cute?
Had children? Not yet.
Describe your dream wedding: Basically exactly the one we had. My students played our processional. My Dad walked me down the aisle and danced with me. Mom and friends read cool readings. Colleen (and her wee daughter at the time, Meghan) sang us all to tears. Our friends stood at our sides under the chuppah. The rabbi was really funny and fun. We did what we wanted to do, not what was the correct or expected thing to do. For example, we played a duet on our flute and tuba in place of writing our own vows. The rabbi taught people Jewish customs as we went along. I married my best friend (barf now if you must) and the love of my life. We had good food, drink and a kickass swing band. We danced the hora to Hava Nagila, and I've never had so much fun.
How do you want to die?: In my sleep at a grand old age and with a smile on my face.
What do you want to be when you grow up?: A full time musician and flute teacher along with being a kick-ass mom and partner.

Best eye color?: Blue
Best hair color?: Dirty blond.
Short or long hair: Short.
Height: Taller than me in heels.
Best first date location: Symphony concert.
Articles of clothing: Tight pleather pants with the cheek-holes cut out, spikes, cheetah-patterned, flowy, button-down silk shirts, unbuttoned to navel, tube socks and a festive chapeau. Um, either that or just clothes that fit and aren't stained.

Number of sexual partners: About 40. AHAHAHAHA! I totally couldn't even type that with a straight face. (Mom? Why aren't you laughing? Mom? MOM?)
Number of pairs of shoes: A million. And almost all of them are black.
Number of bags: A million. And almost all of them are black.
Number of CD's I own: Two million.
Number of piercings: 3 in each ear, but I only use one in each.
Number of tattoos: None.