Melissa Runs

Sometimes, Melissa runs her legs. Sometimes, she runs her mouth.

Month: November 2008 (page 1 of 2)

Food, family, and gifts

When I was a child, the tradition was to spend Thanksgiving with my father’s parents at the family farm. It was a potluck style Thanksgiving dinner (served at lunch time) due to the fact that my father is one of six kids. Of course, one of Dad’s sisters had five kids of her own. The meal had at least twenty people. The farm was completely rustic with a wood stove,
stove;
a well since there was no running water thewell; and an outhouse the OUTHOUSE. It was decorated in this rustic farm house style that decorators try to mimic. kitchen.

Then my Mamaw died and my Pappaw got Altzheimer’s and the tradition died along with her. Years of sibling rivalry and unspoken grudges came to light during the settling of my Pappaw’s “estate” and the tradition is definitely dead since the likelihood for people to sit in the same room isn’t happening anymore. Maybe later but not now. So our small nuclear family has our own Thanksgiving dinner and invites my Mother’s mother and we have a grand old time.

This year my grandma had a cold and stayed home. We still had a grand old time. My brother invited the evil one (let’s just say she and I don’t get along) which caused some bad feelings but I took a nap and woke up refreshed and happy. Also, I was pleasantly relieved that the evil one had eaten and left already. This wasn’t intentional but some surprisingly good fortune. I am surprised that no one in the family woke me up. Apparently, they didn’t want the drama of good versus evil ruining their turkey and dressing.

And so it goes.

The dinner itself was a traditional southern Thanksgiving dinner with turkey, cornbread dressing, pinto beans, greens, Lemon Ice Box pie, pecan pie, sweet potatoes, and this dish my Mama calls Dorito turkey.

Dorito turkey usually has chicken in it but this is how we get rid of the leftovers. It’s a “southern” delicacy.

  • One can of rotel,
  • a bag of Doritos (nacho cheese but it originally used the now discontinued taco flavored chips),
  • cream of mushroom soup,
  • cream of chicken soup, Velveeta,
  • a bunch of shredded chicken/turkey.
  • Mix up all the can goods until it looks like vomit.

Cut the velveeta into cubes. Layer chips, chicken and velveeta in a pan. Pour liquid mixture over it all. Bake in oven until bubbly. (I think its’ 350 degrees but honestly I don’t know) Good times.

My Mama hasn’t learned that we don’t need the huge turkey anymore so we have pounds and pounds of cooked turkey leftover. It was nice to hang out with the fam and talk trash. They are funny. My Dad then went outside and toyed with tools in that stereotypically “real man” way.

That evening my brother and I had some quality time by going to see Twilight. I didn’t hate it but I didn’t like it either. I forgot how much of the story was from Bella’s point of view and was the equivalent of a “voiceover.” This movie didn’t have any voice overs so a lot was lost in translation.

I did see Quantum of Solace earlier this month and it was more like a Bourne movie than anything else. There were no sex scenes or snazzy gadgets. How can you have a Bond movie without sex scenes and snazzy gadgets? But Daniel Craig is great eye candy so I’m not screaming a rant about wanting my money back.

I also made a deal with my Mother that if I woke up and stood in line at WalMart, I would get the Garmin GPS for Christmas. I wanted one anyway but it was half price. I promised that she could wrap it and put it under the tree. I also promised that I would jump up and down and do a happy dance when I saw it. So I got some cash from her and set my alarm.

Now people around here in this small town, or even this relatively small state for that matter, mention that places are crowded all the time even when they’re not. Maybe this is where my New York/DC experience gives me a different perspective on the ideal. I will say that the local Walmart at 5:30a.m. was bona fide crowded. The parking lot was full to the gas station in the back. It was a constant dodging of other people in the aisles. I went to the food portion of the store (which was empty because very few people were interested in groceries) and made it to electronics. OH the line of people wanting Playstations, Wiis, and whatnot was huge but in line I stood. I got a paperback from the nearby book station and waited. [NOTE: carrying a book in your bag and reading it when you wait in line or anywhere else is how “city folk” handle crowds. Most people who have a subway commute are reading the paper or a book. Try it. It will give you something to do rather than be impatient.]

So I got my Garmin and got out of dodge. I did run into an old friend and chatted away. I got back home around 6:30 and went back to sleep. I am not a morning person by any stretch of the imagination.

As I was eating, My mother says, “Missy I got to tell you something.”
“What”
“[my Aunt] was in line this morning too. She was getting one of those Garmins for Grandma so she could give it to you for Christmas.”
“Oh. So this means there are two Garmins. You want one. You can have this one.”
“No I don’t need one.”
“but . . . but… I got up at 5!”
“I know but it would be easier for your to take yours back rather than [your Aunt] to take hers back.”
“okay.”

So a phone call was made and I’m back to Walmart to take my Garmin back.

The plan is not to tell my Grandmother about any of these shenanigans and when I open my present, I am to do a happy dance, hug and kiss my Grandma, and tell her it was something I always wanted. She will be all happy that she made my day and that is really what Christmas gift giving is all about: making other people happy.

Thanksgiving thanks.

Bellesouth decided to send out some Thanks for Thanksgiving and I’m copying her because it sure seems like a good idea. Bellesouth is smart. Also, I am a little intense and bitch a lot so I need to let people know that I am grateful for stuff. I mean I did win a book that retails for 60 bucks. Hey 40 bucks of free money from an ebay buyers is still SWEET!

  • I’m thankful for my family. Sometimes I want to slap them upside the head for being stubborn or passive aggressive but they are ultimately very supportive, kind, considerate people. I love them very much.
  • I am thankful for my friends. While I don’t think I have that many of them, I am grateful for the ones that I have. They are gold, just like Ponyboy.
  • I’m thankful for running. It keeps me fit. It gives me focus and considering that my quadraplegic cousin Rick couldn’t walk for the last thirty years of his life, it’s something that I shouldn’t take for granted. (I’m thinking about the Duck 10K and the Jingle Bell 5K)
  • I’m thankful that African Americans who were alive to be beaten by the police for wanting to go to school or eat at a lunch counter are still alive to see the United States of America elect the first African American President. (and one with a funny sounding ethnic name, no less).

    No one can ever take this away from you or me. This might just be the most historic moment that I have been able to witness. I am glad that I was a tiny part of it by volunteering for the campaign.

  • I’m thankful for facebook and myspace which lets me get back in touch with people I haven’t seen in years. It’s interesting to go back to your roots and see how far you’ve come. Also, I got to go to a fabulous Halloween party out of the deal.
  • I’m thankful for the opportunity to be in a profession that looks at the things wrong with the world and makes efforts to change them. Every day is a challenge and is an opportunity.
  • Lastly, I love my pets. No matter how bad things get, it reminds me that there is a world out there and that some things out there in the world need my attention. The cats need food and a changed litterbox no matter how crappy my day went. There’s something in there that inspires me to keep on trucking.
  • Oh and these turkeys

    Thankful turkeys

    are thankful that they are not being eaten.

I am a greedy wench

In addition to my usual comings and goings, I attended a “young lawyers” reception with DOOR PRIZES. I got lured in by “MEET PEOPLE . . . . . WIN AN IPOD”

FREE IPOD! oh and food and booze and attorneys I might actually like. Count me in!

IPOD IPOD IPOD!

Now don’t be fooled, I already own a 4 GB Ipod nano (2nd generation) which more than adequately fulfills my running background noise needs. I am also able to use the super cool Nike + iPod pack to keep track of my pace and distance. So for all practical purposes, I don’t NEED a new iPod.

But gosh darn to WIN ONE!

So away I go.

I’m wearing my snazzy dress/business slacks with my red shirt and my brand spanking new red coat. I adore this coat. It’s chic. There aren’t that many truly chic clothes out there but this coat is truly chic. It seems more retro in person than it does in the link. I’m ready to meet people, eat some grub, and win an iPod.

This is one of those events where you get a card and you have to talk to all the volunteer agencies that put a sticker on your card and when you fill your card up with stickers. I meet some people. I make some jokes. I hope some of them were funny and I eat some food. They had mini cheesecake! Hey now, an evening can’t completely suck when there are mini cheesecakes in the house.

So the drawing begins. oooh oooh ahhhh.

AND I WIN!

A copy of Foonberg’s How to Start your own Law Practice.

Yayee I win. I walk up smiling and all appreciative for my good fortune.

But in actuality, I was thinking, “Shit this means I don’t get the iPod!”

(FYI, I already own the book)

The running log

While I was in capital city, I went to the running store last week and bought some new running shoes while I still had the money to do so and restocked by Body Glide. Body Glide is the BOMB. It’s one of the best inventions known to man. Body Glide protects against blisters and other friction related injuries. You can see Paulie Bleeker using some in Juno. (about 30 seconds into this trailer)

See?!!! Okay I love Juno but LIBERTY BELL? Are you serious?!!

I ran 4 miles on two separate days this week. The first 4 miles was the fastest pace I have run in years and definitely the fastest pace since I’ve been using the Nike/iPod tracker. The second run, which was the next day, was a lot slower. I intended it to be an easy run and while it was slower,
the first half mile felt like death.

Some runners are purist who don’t think you should run with music but I am a music fan. SO What by Pink is a great running song. Some of my other favorites are “Right Here, Right Now” by Fat Boy Slim, Firestarter by Prodigy, Disarm by Smashing Pumpkins, Hey Ya by Outkast…. hrmm…

Maybe I need to make a running mix later.

The Election edition and comments

I admit it. I was originally a Hillary supporter. One of the factors in my decision to support Hillary Clinton in the primaries was whether I thought that Americans were ready for an African American president. While I thought that America, in general, probably was ready, I had serious doubts about the electoral votes from Southern states and other potentially racist communities blocking Obama from the opportunity to be President. It seems that I was wrong and right. Obama became President and racism is still ugly.

When Obama got the nomination, I went to Kennett to campaign because Obama didn’t even open a campaign office in Arkansas until after the Democratic convention. If you signed up to volunteer as an Arkansan, the Obama campaign sent you to Missouri. That’s how I got there. Missouri was considered a battleground state and Arkansas, with its six electoral votes, was not. The Obama campaign was correct in this estimation.

I, as a lawyer, also signed up to be a poll watcher. I have been a poll watcher for quite a few elections and it’s fun. It’s also fascinating to watch all these people coming into the polls to vote. I said I was available to send to Missouri and so I was selected to go to Sikeston, Missouri.

Sikeston, Missouri is a town of about 12,000 in the south east corner of Missouri. It’s known for being the home of the original Lambert’s Cafe (a famous restaurant known for throwing its rolls) and the last lynching of an African American in Missouri.

I was trained and got a really cool t-shirt.

Voting Rights team represent.

See I told you it was cool. I was told to be at the polls at 5:30. The polls were to open at 6:00 a.m. The polls closed at at 6 or 7. Is it wrong that I don’t even remember right now? Then again I was sitting out in the sun for a long, long time. Since I wasn’t registered to vote in Missouri and Missouri law requires you to be registered in the county in which you watch the polls, I was considered a “monitor” as opposed to a poll watcher. I watched the craziness that occurred outside the polls. If there was I line, I was the one to monitor the line and make sure people weren’t harassing voters in the parking lots. If there was problems, I was to call a group of attorneys located somewhere unknown to me (they didn’t even tell it at training) called the “boiler room.” My polling location was at a firestation.

I get there and was greeted by a campaign volunteer named Genesis. Genesis is the first book in the Christian Bible. (as well as the Jewish Bible since they like the Old Testament). Also, the word genesis means “The coming into being of something; the origin”

This particular polling location wasn’t one that would have long lines although there was a steady stream of people that came in and out all day. Around 10:00, a police officer came out and said that he was closing half of the parking lot for a training exercise. They became putting up police barricades and rolled out a fire truck. They managed to block one entrance to the parking lot entirely and blocked another one partially. The sidewalk was now harder to reach and some people would be forced to walk around the building. Parking on the street was not possible in this part of town.

November2008 011

Oh no they're blocking off the parking lot

OH NO!

Other facts that put this into perspective.

  1. There are at least two other fire stations in this town
  2. The police and the African American community have a tense relationship
  3. This polling place was the place for the “black part” of town
  4. Until this year or “before Obama,” the polling place for this precinct was at a church more centrally located for the area.

So yeah this was some weird crap. I called the boiler room. The pollwatcher from inside the polling place came outside and called the boiler room. A sheriff’s deputy who was stumping for the current sheriff called the Sheriff. Something was rotten in the state of Missouri and we were looking at it.

The then County clerk came. She came quickly. She must have already been in town.

The whoopass is being dispensed right about now

There was yelling. She opened the can of whoop ass and the training exercise was over. The whole incident from start to finish was thirty minutes.

Best Picture celebrating Obama's win EVER

Okay maybe not ever.

But how do I love thee, let me count the ways.

The Great Breezy-nator

Yeah I told you I was puppysitting Breezy. There she is courtesy of my camera phone. Look at her. She is a happy dog. if she had her way, she would be outside all the time, looking at the neighbors. I had no idea she was such a nosy busy body.

My life in list form

  1. Thursday, Breezy, the best dog in the word ™, came to my house for me to puppysit while my grandmother is living it up in Vegas. She will be here all week. Let the good times roll.
  2. I keep drafting this magnum, literary opus about my volunteer work on election day complete with voter intimidation and watching the historic event of the first African American man being elected president in the town known for being the last lynching in Missouri. There’s something surreal about that.
  3. My Aunt Reba died Thursday night. My Mother and she were very close. It’s a little off that she’s not here. Then again, Reba loved to have fun and would probably won’t my Mother who is the person who is always there when someone needs her to cut loose every once in a while.
  4. We heard rumors that they were going to a male strip club. The next day, they told us it was just rumors. I’m disappointed. The mental picture of my mother and grandmother in a Chippendale’s has provided MUCHO GUSTO LAUGH— errro??? Laughing my ass clean off. Yes I am.
  5. According to my Mama, My Dad told her she couldn’t go see men stripping. Uh huh, old school husbandry. And people wonder why I’m not married.
  6. Of course, then my Mama immediately said that if she really wanted to go to a strip club, she would have gone anyway. Ah yeah quiet rebellion, that’s my MAMA.
  7. Voting Rights team represent.

    This is the front of my “voter protection team” t-shirt provided by the Obama campaign.

  8. Yeah the voter protection team got their own shirts

    This is the back of the “Voter Protection Team” shirt. IT says “Voting Questions? Ask me!” yeah I’m the shiznit.

  9. Of course, Obama wants to know about this blog if I have any chance of working in his administration. Oops maybe I shouldn’t have written that open letter to the ex boyfriend from Hades… NAH! It was worth it. bwahahahahahhaha.
  10. The polling place was a combination police and fire station. They decided to have a training exercise and close half the parking lot. Of course, they decided to do this on election day. Of course, this particular polling place was the “black part” of town. Of course, there are two other fire/police stations in this town. And Of course, there were police barricades.
  11. NO really. I am serious. Here’s a picture!

    THE POLICE!

  12. The county clerk came and opened the industrial strength can of whoop ass and that training exercise was closed down and the parking lot was opened up in less than 30 minutes. Democracy in action people
  13. My dinner from Lambert's Cafe.

    This is the chicken fried round steak platter from Lambert’s Cafe. Since it was world famous, I figured I had better go. I mean if you go to Orlando and not step foot in Disneyworld . . . it seems sort of wrong.

  14. Today was Aunt Reba’s funeral. It was a small and cute funeral. It was also about a month from the day that her son, Rick died. It’s weird how that works out.
  15. It’s also weird that my Aunt Janice, who lives in Florida and calls me maybe twice a year called me the day before she died. My Mom told her about Reba and that she was in awful shape and she was able to make the funeral. How weird is that?
  16. I bought some new running shoes and a reflecting vest. Oh and body glide. I can’t forget the body glide. It’s the best stuff ever. Prevents fat lady thigh rubbing friction burn. (if you’re fat enough, you know what I”m talking about) I am training for the Little Rock Marathon in earnest. I’m scared, though.
  17. I am embarrassed at some of the provincial, racist attitudes that have gushed forth from some of my friends, family, and neighbors since Barack Obama has been elected president. Completely embarrassed. And no, he has never said he was going to take your guns away.
  18. I met a writer at Reba’s funeral. Well she has a day job as an English teacher but she writes novels. She’s trying to find an agent. Her favorite author is Earnest Hemingway. Sometimes it feels good to be able to talk somebody who likes to read books.

Movie meme (procrastination nation)

Why yes I should be working. No I’m not. Here we go. This came from jennybee

THE RULES

1. Pick your favorite film to represent each letter of the alphabet.
2. The letter “A” and the word “The” do not count as the beginning of the film’s title, unless the film is simply titled A or The. No legitimate films are named A or The, so don’t try it.
3. Movies go by whatever name they were known by for their theatrical release. For example, Return of the Jedi belongs under “R” not “S” as in Star Wars Episode IV: Return of the Jedi. This rule applies to all films in the original Star Wars trilogy. Same thing with Raiders of the Lost Ark–it goes under “R,” not “I” for Indiana Jones and the Raiders of the Lost Ark. Conversely, all the Lord of the Rings films belong under “L” and all films in the Chronicles of Narnia series belong under “C,” as that’s what those filmmakers called their films from the start. Confused yet? Don’t worry about it; it’s not like you’re going to get fined.
4. Films that start with a number are filed under the first letter of their number’s word. Thus, 12 Monkeys would be filed under “T.”
5. These don’t have to be what you think are the best movies ever made, just the movies that if you had to watch a movie that started with that letter, you’d never mind watching. Thinking of it as Movies I Could Watch At Any Given Moment, Regardless of Mood or as Movies I Always Get Sucked Into Watching When They Are On TV is a good rule of thumb.
6. Any feature film counts, as long as it’s on imdb.com. Docs, dramas, comedies, horror, whatever. TV and mini-series and made-for-tv movies don’t.
7. You have to have actually seen the movies and be able to recommend them.
8. Select more people to play along.
9. Change the rules if you don’t like them.

Amelie
Bring It On
Chasing Amy
Donnie Darko
English Patient, The
Fargo
Gone with the Wind
Heathers
It’s a Wonderful Life
Juno
Kill Bill Volume I
Lost in Translation
Monsters, Inc.
Notebook, The (shut up you know when they’re kissing in the rain you’re a crying fool, too!)
On the Waterfront
Pan’s Labyrinth
Quest for Fire
Requiem for a Dream
Shawshank Redemption/Sixth Sense/Secretary (yes it’s a three way tie)
Thelma and Louise
Usual Suspects, The
Vertigo
Wizard of Oz
X-men, The
Yearling, The
Zentropa

I love this

Obama Pictures and McCain Pictures
see Sarah Palin pictures

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