Melissa Runs

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

Month: September 2009

I've become a lightweight.

I live in a dry county and for whatever reason have become friends with people who don’t drink. As a result, there isn’t the bar hopping of days past.

As a result, this list of Drinks to try before you expire. Well I don’t have that many bold items.

List of Drinks You Must Try Before You Expire

1. Manhattan Cocktail
2. Kopi Luwak (Cat-poo coffee…I plan to seek it out on my next trip to Vietnam…it’s crazy expensive…even there.)
3. French / Swiss Absinthe
4. Rootbeer
5. Gin Martini
6. Sauternes
7. Whole Milk
8. Tequila (100% Agave)
9. XO Cognac
10. Espresso
11. Spring Water (directly from the spring)
12. Gin & Tonic
13. Mead (Mead can be really tasty…)
14. Westvleteren 12 (Yellow Cap) Trappist Ale (N
15. Chateau d’Yquem
16. Budweiser
17. Maraschino Liqueur
18. Mojito
19. Orgeat
20. Grand Marnier
21. Mai Tai (original)
22. Ice Wine
23. Red Bull
24. Fresh Squeezed Orange Juice
25. Bubble Tea (nasty, nasty stuff)
26. Tokaji (want to try…)
27. Chicory
28. Islay Scotch
29. Pusser’s Navy Rum
30. Fernet Branca
31. Fresh Pressed Apple Cider
32. Bourbon

33. Australian Shiraz
34. Buckley’s Cough Syrup
35. Orange Bitters
36. Margarita (traditional recipe)
37. Molasses & Milk
38. Chimay Blue
39. Wine of Pines (Tepache)
40. Green Tea
41. Daiginjo Sake
42. Chai Tea
43. Vodka (chilled, straight)
44. Coca-Cola

45. Zombie (Beachcomber recipe)
46. Barley Wine
47. Brewed Choclate (Xocolatl)
48. Pisco Sour
49. Lemonade
50. Speyside Single Malt
51. Jamaican Blue Mountain Coffee
52. Champagne
53. Rosé
54. Bellini

55. Caipirinha
56. White Zinfandel
57. Coconut Water
58. Cerveza
59. Cafe au Lait
60. Ice Tea
61. Pedro Ximenez Sherry
62. Vintage Port
63. Hot Chocolate
64. German Riesling
65. Pina Colada
66. El Dorado 15 Year Rum
67. Chartreuse
68. Greek Wine
69. Negroni
70. Jägermeister
71. Chicha
72. Guiness
73. Rhum Agricole
74. Palm Wine
75. Soju
76. Ceylon Tea (High Grown)
77. Belgian Lambic
78. Mongolian Airag (kimus)
79. Doogh, Lassi or Ayran
80. Sugarcane Juice
81. Ramos Gin Fizz
82. Singapore Sling
83. Mint Julep
84. Old Fashioned
85. Perique (appears to be liquor distilled from tobacco!)
86. Jenever (Holland Gin)
87. Chocolate Milkshake
88. Traditional Italian Barolo (Have a bottle…unopened…need to open).
89. Pulque
90. Natural Sparkling Water
91. Cuban Rum
92. Asti Spumante
93. Irish Whiskey
94. Château Margaux
95. Two Buck Chuck (Would buy it if it were in AR)
96. Screech
97. Akvavit
98. Rye Whisky
99. German Weissbier
100. Daiquiri (classic)

See? Look. How did that happen?!?!?! How did that happen. I’m a do-gooder. I should go sell girlscout cookies and add
“GOLLY GEE WHIZ” to my vocabulary.

Totally awesome videos and pictures.

beer

It could be an actual Prohibition protest.

Insurance Company Executives need your help. Hilarious. Absolutely hilarious. And yeah everybody and their mama has already seen but that doesn’t make it any less awesome.

Fa la la la la busyness means no bloggyness

It’s that time again. I signed up for the Race for the Cure. with Team Fabulous. You can see the pictures from last year’s race here. This is one of the few events that I don’t actually run. Last year, Team Fabulous took a smoke break by the stripping firemen. Yeah I said stripping firemen. You might just have to join to figure out if I am serious.

I cooked something. It tasted good and no one got food poisoning. It’s the dawn of a new age, America. I made this Chicken a la Diable It’s french. Well bastardized french. I don’t think about.com got too authentic but its’ dijon mustard and cayenne pepper over chicken, then covered in bread crumbs and baked in a roasting pan that has melted butter in it. YUM to the TUM. I was rather pleased myself. It didn’t taste spicy though. IN fact, I didn’t taste much of the mustard or cayenne pepper at all. That was rather weird but the chicken wasn’t dry or bland so I can’t complain.

I attended our local high school football game and took tons of pictures. Yet I haven’t had time to download them and give the commentary. I also attended the tailgate but the camera crews had already left and most of the food was gone by the time I got there. I wasn’t that late people. It seems people descended on that food like vultures. One woman almost snatched something out of my hand. OUT OF MY HAND!!! I didn’t know anyone here was friends with Kanye West. What the hell?! See… great commentary is a coming. Oh yeah we won like 62 to 32 or some other crazy score that indicates that both teams have shitty defense but theirs is worse than ours.

Rush Limbaugh has lost his mind.

Limbaugh: “[I]n Obama’s America, the white kids now get beat up with the black kids cheering.” He takes one isolate incident and uses it to scare bigots everywhere.

Seriously? The only time I have heard any black person say “right on” is the kids on Good Times. No really, no kid on a bus in 2009 is saying “right on.” And why does Rush Limbaugh sound like Fat Albert when he says it? Oh my Bill Cosby is going to be pissed.

from MediaMatters.org

For people who say that race has nothing to do with it, explain this Limbaugh clip.

RIP Patrick Swayze

He died yesterday. aww man. *sniff*

I grew up on Patrick Swayze movies. I remember playing Dirty Dancing songs and trying to mimic the movements in my room when I was in the ninth grade. I saw Ghost with my boyfriend at the time my senior year of high school.

9/11

On this day eight years ago, I spent it looking for Pablo Gomez.

The President's school speech

So here is the speech to the schools that Barack Obama is supposed to give tomorrow.

Prepared Remarks of President Barack Obama
Back to School Event

Arlington, Virginia
September 8, 2009

The President: Hello everyone – how’s everybody doing today? I’m here with students at Wakefield High School in Arlington, Virginia. And we’ve got students tuning in from all across America, kindergarten through twelfth grade. I’m glad you all could join us today.

I know that for many of you, today is the first day of school. And for those of you in kindergarten, or starting middle or high school, it’s your first day in a new school, so it’s understandable if you’re a little nervous. I imagine there are some seniors out there who are feeling pretty good right now, with just one more year to go. And no matter what grade you’re in, some of you are probably wishing it were still summer, and you could’ve stayed in bed just a little longer this morning.
I know that feeling. When I was young, my family lived in Indonesia for a few years, and my mother didn’t have the money to send me where all the American kids went to school. So she decided to teach me extra lessons herself, Monday through Friday – at 4:30 in the morning.

Now I wasn’t too happy about getting up that early. A lot of times, I’d fall asleep right there at the kitchen table. But whenever I’d complain, my mother would just give me one of those looks and say, “This is no picnic for me either, buster.”
So I know some of you are still adjusting to being back at school. But I’m here today because I have something important to discuss with you. I’m here because I want to talk with you about your education and what’s expected of all of you in this new school year.

Now I’ve given a lot of speeches about education. And I’ve talked a lot about responsibility.
I’ve talked about your teachers’ responsibility for inspiring you, and pushing you to learn.
I’ve talked about your parents’ responsibility for making sure you stay on track, and get your homework done, and don’t spend every waking hour in front of the TV or with that Xbox.

I’ve talked a lot about your government’s responsibility for setting high standards, supporting teachers and principals, and turning around schools that aren’t working where students aren’t getting the opportunities they deserve.
But at the end of the day, we can have the most dedicated teachers, the most supportive parents, and the best schools in the world – and none of it will matter unless all of you fulfill your responsibilities. Unless you show up to those schools; pay attention to those teachers; listen to your parents, grandparents and other adults; and put in the hard work it takes to succeed.

And that’s what I want to focus on today: the responsibility each of you has for your education. I want to start with the responsibility you have to yourself.

Every single one of you has something you’re good at. Every single one of you has something to offer. And you have a responsibility to yourself to discover what that is. That’s the opportunity an education can provide.

Maybe you could be a good writer – maybe even good enough to write a book or articles in a newspaper – but you might not know it until you write a paper for your English class. Maybe you could be an innovator or an inventor – maybe even good enough to come up with the next iPhone or a new medicine or vaccine – but you might not know it until you do a project for your science class. Maybe you could be a mayor or a Senator or a Supreme Court Justice, but you might not know that until you join student government or the debate team.

And no matter what you want to do with your life – I guarantee that you’ll need an education to do it. You want to be a doctor, or a teacher, or a police officer? You want to be a nurse or an architect, a lawyer or a member of our military? You’re going to need a good education for every single one of those careers. You can’t drop out of school and just drop into a good job. You’ve got to work for it and train for it and learn for it.

And this isn’t just important for your own life and your own future. What you make of your education will decide nothing less than the future of this country. What you’re learning in school today will determine whether we as a nation can meet our greatest challenges in the future.

You’ll need the knowledge and problem-solving skills you learn in science and math to cure diseases like cancer and AIDS, and to develop new energy technologies and protect our environment. You’ll need the insights and critical thinking skills you gain in history and social studies to fight poverty and homelessness, crime and discrimination, and make our nation more fair and more free. You’ll need the creativity and ingenuity you develop in all your classes to build new companies that will create new jobs and boost our economy.

We need every single one of you to develop your talents, skills and intellect so you can help solve our most difficult problems. If you don’t do that – if you quit on school – you’re not just quitting on yourself, you’re quitting on your country.
Now I know it’s not always easy to do well in school. I know a lot of you have challenges in your lives right now that can make it hard to focus on your schoolwork.

I get it. I know what that’s like. My father left my family when I was two years old, and I was raised by a single mother who struggled at times to pay the bills and wasn’t always able to give us things the other kids had. There were times when I missed having a father in my life. There were times when I was lonely and felt like I didn’t fit in.
So I wasn’t always as focused as I should have been. I did some things I’m not proud of, and got in more trouble than I should have. And my life could have easily taken a turn for the worse.

But I was fortunate. I got a lot of second chances and had the opportunity to go to college, and law school, and follow my dreams. My wife, our First Lady Michelle Obama, has a similar story. Neither of her parents had gone to college, and they didn’t have much. But they worked hard, and she worked hard, so that she could go to the best schools in this country.
Some of you might not have those advantages. Maybe you don’t have adults in your life who give you the support that you need. Maybe someone in your family has lost their job, and there’s not enough money to go around. Maybe you live in a neighborhood where you don’t feel safe, or have friends who are pressuring you to do things you know aren’t right.

But at the end of the day, the circumstances of your life – what you look like, where you come from, how much money you have, what you’ve got going on at home – that’s no excuse for neglecting your homework or having a bad attitude. That’s no excuse for talking back to your teacher, or cutting class, or dropping out of school. That’s no excuse for not trying.
Where you are right now doesn’t have to determine where you’ll end up. No one’s written your destiny for you. Here in America, you write your own destiny. You make your own future.

That’s what young people like you are doing every day, all across America.

Young people like Jazmin Perez, from Roma, Texas. Jazmin didn’t speak English when she first started school. Hardly anyone in her hometown went to college, and neither of her parents had gone either. But she worked hard, earned good grades, got a scholarship to Brown University, and is now in graduate school, studying public health, on her way to being Dr. Jazmin Perez.

I’m thinking about Andoni Schultz, from Los Altos, California, who’s fought brain cancer since he was three. He’s endured all sorts of treatments and surgeries, one of which affected his memory, so it took him much longer – hundreds of extra hours – to do his schoolwork. But he never fell behind, and he’s headed to college this fall.

And then there’s Shantell Steve, from my hometown of Chicago, Illinois. Even when bouncing from foster home to foster home in the toughest neighborhoods, she managed to get a job at a local health center; start a program to keep young people out of gangs; and she’s on track to graduate high school with honors and go on to college.

Jazmin, Andoni and Shantell aren’t any different from any of you. They faced challenges in their lives just like you do. But they refused to give up. They chose to take responsibility for their education and set goals for themselves. And I expect all of you to do the same.

That’s why today, I’m calling on each of you to set your own goals for your education – and to do everything you can to meet them. Your goal can be something as simple as doing all your homework, paying attention in class, or spending time each day reading a book. Maybe you’ll decide to get involved in an extracurricular activity, or volunteer in your community.

Maybe you’ll decide to stand up for kids who are being teased or bullied because of who they are or how they look, because you believe, like I do, that all kids deserve a safe environment to study and learn. Maybe you’ll decide to take better care of yourself so you can be more ready to learn. And along those lines, I hope you’ll all wash your hands a lot, and stay home from school when you don’t feel well, so we can keep people from getting the flu this fall and winter.
Whatever you resolve to do, I want you to commit to it. I want you to really work at it.

I know that sometimes, you get the sense from TV that you can be rich and successful without any hard work — that your ticket to success is through rapping or basketball or being a reality TV star, when chances are, you’re not going to be any of those things.

But the truth is, being successful is hard. You won’t love every subject you study. You won’t click with every teacher. Not every homework assignment will seem completely relevant to your life right this minute. And you won’t necessarily succeed at everything the first time you try.

That’s OK. Some of the most successful people in the world are the ones who’ve had the most failures. JK Rowling’s first Harry Potter book was rejected twelve times before it was finally published. Michael Jordan was cut from his high school basketball team, and he lost hundreds of games and missed thousands of shots during his career. But he once said, “I have failed over and over and over again in my life. And that is why I succeed.”

These people succeeded because they understand that you can’t let your failures define you – you have to let them teach you. You have to let them show you what to do differently next time. If you get in trouble, that doesn’t mean you’re a troublemaker, it means you need to try harder to behave. If you get a bad grade, that doesn’t mean you’re stupid, it just means you need to spend more time studying.

No one’s born being good at things, you become good at things through hard work. You’re not a varsity athlete the first time you play a new sport. You don’t hit every note the first time you sing a song. You’ve got to practice. It’s the same with your schoolwork. You might have to do a math problem a few times before you get it right, or read something a few times before you understand it, or do a few drafts of a paper before it’s good enough to hand in.

Don’t be afraid to ask questions. Don’t be afraid to ask for help when you need it. I do that every day. Asking for help isn’t a sign of weakness, it’s a sign of strength. It shows you have the courage to admit when you don’t know something, and to learn something new. So find an adult you trust – a parent, grandparent or teacher; a coach or counselor – and ask them to help you stay on track to meet your goals.

And even when you’re struggling, even when you’re discouraged, and you feel like other people have given up on you – don’t ever give up on yourself. Because when you give up on yourself, you give up on your country.

The story of America isn’t about people who quit when things got tough. It’s about people who kept going, who tried harder, who loved their country too much to do anything less than their best.

It’s the story of students who sat where you sit 250 years ago, and went on to wage a revolution and found this nation. Students who sat where you sit 75 years ago who overcame a Depression and won a world war; who fought for civil rights and put a man on the moon. Students who sat where you sit 20 years ago who founded Google, Twitter and Facebook and changed the way we communicate with each other.

So today, I want to ask you, what’s your contribution going to be? What problems are you going to solve? What discoveries will you make? What will a president who comes here in twenty or fifty or one hundred years say about what all of you did for this country?

Your families, your teachers, and I are doing everything we can to make sure you have the education you need to answer these questions. I’m working hard to fix up your classrooms and get you the books, equipment and computers you need to learn. But you’ve got to do your part too. So I expect you to get serious this year. I expect you to put your best effort into everything you do. I expect great things from each of you. So don’t let us down – don’t let your family or your country or yourself down. Make us all proud. I know you can do it.

Thank you, God bless you, and God bless America.

So this is the socialist propaganda that has people about to pee all over themselves? really?

9 Songs

Michael Winterbottom noticed that there were works in classic literature that were extremely erotic and graphic. Yet, these books are still considered literature as opposed to porn. So Winterbottom makes a movie using unsimulated sex (that’s fancy words for the folks really are doing it).

It’s about an English guy who studies glaciers who meets an American girl at a rock concert. They have sex. They go to more concerts and have more sex. That’s pretty much the entire plot.

Winterbottom intentionally wanted to tell a story of a relationship solely through the partners sexual acts. And what we have is beautiful filmed erotica. Some critics have called it soft core porn. It doesn’t really feel like porn but it doesn’t feel like a good movie either.

It did get me to thinking. Winterbottom’s premise was to show a relationship solely through sex. That premise lends itself to the question: What exactly does sex reveal about a person? Most people would say that you learn things by having sex with someone that you wouldn’t learn any other way. Many religions say it is powerful and should only be done within the confines of marriage.

I really wanted to see the concert footage. The Dandy Warhols are one of my favorite bands. Alas, the concert footage in the trailer is much better than the movie. The movie footage feels like Winterbottom bought some bootlegs.

But like a relationship where you find that great chemistry is not enough to sustain it for the long term, this movie is not enough to well…. keep to me interested. I didn’t know enough about the characters to care if they broke up or not.

The Thomas Reed Affair part 2: the end

Well as I wrote here, there’s this Thomas Reed guy who friended me on facebook. His info said that he went to my college and graduated from my class. I thought he looked familiar and friended him. Someone wrote me and said they couldn’t remember him and checked the four yearbooks and couldn’t find him. As I thought about it, I couldn’t definitely remember him at all –not one single memory.

I wrote some other friends and they didn’t remember him either.

Well I finally wrote a blog entry about it and then put a status update on facebook that said this.

Who is Thomas Reed? Does anybody from Hendrix College circa 1995 remember him? I don’t and it’s bugging me. If you graduated Central High School around 1991 and remember him, let me know.

Well I got several comments from people who didn’t remember him. Another person made a joke that he was the “Hendrix stalker” because that person had also went around asking and no one could remember him either.

I did email him and the conversation went like this.

Me: Dude How do I know you. It’s bugging me.

Thomas Reed: How would we know each other…. Read More

About 30 seconds later, without me responding.

Thomas Reed: I was just online and looking at friends of friends

ME: I graduated from Hendrix College in 1995.

Thomas Reed: I didn’t finish until 98

ME: Then why did you list yourself as graduating in 1995. (look at your own info). And if it’s friends of friend, who is the original friend?

Thomas REED: Well.. I’m sorry. I had a friend of mine set up my account. I am not sure how I ended up with you in my friends list. Im sorry I bothered you.

And apparently after that message, he defriended me.

So even though his info says he graduated in 1995. He’s now claiming he finished in 1998 but it doesn’t appear that he’s friending anyone from the year 1998.

One of my friends commented that he was being sensitive but that my questions were very pointed. Well, I don’t know about that. The whole thing is weird. Hendrix was a fairly friendly place and most classmates would have no problem saying “I lived in such and such dorm and hung out with so and so most of the time. That’s how you would know me.” This isn’t New York where random questions like that are greeted with suspicion.

But he has proven himself on some point to be partially dishonest. Why did the friend who set up the account put 95 if he finished in 1998? Did he mislead that friend? Did that friend just have a brainfart and assume since he was 36?

Someone sent me a message privately asking if it was possible that this guy was just that gosh darn forgettable. That somehow he did indeed manage to slide under the radar for most students.

I don’t know.

The other weird thing is that his friends are mostly people from undergrad and hardly anyone else. For someone who is 36, that seems weird.

I do know that working as an investigator in criminal law for a while has warped my outlook or made me extremely cynical, depending on whom you ask. Based on my investigative background, I am aware of the information that can be gleened from someone’s facebook account.

Maybe I’m being cynical. I don’t know.

I am a woman who likes answers and I am coming to the conclusion that I am not going to get the ones I want from Thomas Reed.

So that’s all.

I still have no idea who he is,l He doesn’t seem that forthcoming and seems to resent questions.

Blogging for Books

Little Rock Tweetup has decided to give back to the community and will be having a Twestival on September 10th at the Clinton Library. This year’s “twetival” will be benefiting Reach Out and Read Arkansas. You can purchase tickets here. It’s 10 dollars and you are to bring a book for a child under the age of 5.

Today Friday September 4, 2009, we were to blog for books. Our assignment was to name a book we liked as a kid. I loved The Monster at the End of This Book . It’s a Sesame Street book and it’s the story of Grover who hears that there is a Monster at the end of this book. He is scared. He tries to get us to stop turning the pages by setting up barriers such as ropes and bricks. He’s all scared and freaked out. In the end . . . . well I won’t tell you the end. read it yourself.

For some reason, I loved this book. It was about fear and overcoming your fear. It is also about how sometimes people worry over nothing and make things scarier than they actually are. It’s a good lesson for everyone, not just kids.

A children’s book that I discovered as an adult is The Gas We Pass: The Story of Farts (My Body Science). It’s a Japanese Children’s book about… well you guessed it: Farts. It’s educational and amusing. I mean how can you now laugh at farts. Farts are funny.

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