Melissa Runs

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

Category: tests and memes (page 1 of 2)

I moustache you some questions


So I found this via Running and Reading and thought I would play along.

1. Four names that people call me, other than my real name:


2. Four jobs I have had:

Hostess at the old school Brownings
Criminal Investigator
Music Department Clerk

3. Four movies I’ve watched more than once:

The Shawshank Redemption (hell I’ve probably watched it once a month for years)
Who’s Afraid of Virginia Wolf?
Splendor in the Grass
Dead Poet’s Society

4. Two books I recommend:

Lolita by Vladimir Nabakov

On Writing by Stephen King

5. Four places I have lived:

My parents house
Washington DC
New York
Couch Hall

6. Four places I have been:

The White House
Cummins Prison
Samburu National Game Park
Katz’s Delicatessen

7. Four places I would rather be right now

Bed (I am sleepy)
Waffle House (yet i am hungry and craving some scattered and covered hash browns)
Washington DC

8. Four things I don’t eat:

Deer (venison)
Boiled okra
Iceberg lettuce
Green peppers

9. Four of my favorite foods:

Chicken tikka masala
Black bean quesadillas
cheese dip
Chocolate cupcakes

10. Four TV shows I watch:

Assuming this is shows that are currently on the air

House of Cards
American Horror Story
Big Bang Theory

11. Four things I’m looking forward to next year:

Little Rock half marathon
Finish a marathon
Getting AGS Alumni off the ground

12. Four things I am always saying:

That sucks donkey balls
Where are my keys?


Wordless Wednesday: It is so on

The local gym has Kettlebell classes for 2 dollars a classes provided you bring your own kettlebell. Wobbly arms, you are gone.

Holidailies 2011

The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo

I am not going to lie. Ever since I saw the trailer for this particular movie, I have been waiting to see this movie.

Yes this trailer.

I devoured the first two books about a month before the final book came out and read the final one pretty much around the time it went on sale. I haven’t read them since. Yes, I have sweet the entire Swedish trilogy released about two years ago. As a result, I didn’t go into this movie completely blind or without some expectations.

I was afraid that Hollywood was going to fetishize the violence towards women in this movie and turn it into torture porn. Considering that Fincher is also responsible for the movie Se7en, this concern isn’t hysterical. The original title of the book in Sweden (it is a Swedish book that was translated to English) is, when translated to English, “Men who Hate Women” and it is very clear that the violence towards female characters in the book is not something to be glorified. This is a hard line to do when the basis of your movie is entertainment. It’s not as stark as it was in the Swedish movies and there are fancy tricks with camera angles but Fincher managed to not over do it.

Okay, this is Rooney Mara’s movie. She managed to get the slightness of Lisbeth Salander as well as the “weirdness.” Lisbeth Salander may or may not have Asperger’s. She managed to capture the “offness” while still conveying emotion at the appropriate times. She managed to be weird when needed and fierce when also needed. The viewer needs to believe that she can be crazy violent when pushed too far and Mara managed it.

The opening credits are a slick music video utilizing animation and Trent Reznor and Karen O’s cover of the Immigrant Song. It’s an over the top visual extravaganza that only a Hollywood film can pull off.

The movie manages to follow the book fairly closely although there is a big change in plot point at the very, very end. Both the Swedish version as well as this version manage to gloss over the fact that women keep throwing themselves at Blomkvist, streamlining the plot point with Blomkvist only being involved with Salander and the editor of the magazine.

I liked it. Go see it.

Proof that I am a nerd

I bought this book for fun. I am not a grad student. I am not a psychologist by trade. I am not a literature professor or English teacher. I just bought this book because it sounded cool. Okay I was a psychology major in undergrad but that was YEARS AGO!


Holidailies 2011

It’s the little differences

Think about what makes you different and what you do that lights people up. Reflect on all the things that make you different – you’ll find they’re what make you beautiful.

(Author: Karen Walrond)

I’m always a little flummoxed by this types of posts because while I can guestimate on what makes me different, I’m not sure what makes me beautiful or beloved by other people. “Lights people up” I’m not a mind reader but here we go.

According to my friend Angela (RIP), I was different because I “really don’t care about race” when it comes to judging people. Surely that isn’t that special but since it was mentioned by someone else.

I’m pretty tall — Statuesque even.

I’m really curious about other cultures and ways of doing things. It’s part of the reason I have a travel bug.

I’ve lived in a wide variety of places and types of housing and had some pretty awesome jobs in my time.

I feel things from the top of my skull to the tips of my toes. I’m very passionate in that regard. Over the years, I’ve tried to keep a reign on that because sometimes it will get me in trouble.

I am a very loyal friend.

I used to be able to play piano beautifully. I’ve even made people cry before (in a good way, I was told). I haven’t played in a while so I’m not sure what I can do RIGHT NOW.

I have really thick hair with just the right amount of body to hold a curl. My stylists always get really happy about it. Then they end up thinning the hell out of it with thinning shears.

I’m not afraid of being silly.

But really, people are more alike than they are different. They want to be loved and respected. They want to feel useful and that they are not wasting their time. They want to have their existence validated.

Holidailies 2010 Badge

Hello, it’s Holidailies time and things I’ve made

It’s that time of the year. It’s Holidailies time. A time when tons of busy people agree to post an entry a day during the busiest time of the year. (December 6-January 6). I’ve done this before and it’s quite difficult to do it in a way where it’s not completely vapid navel gazing crap. That hasn’t stopped me before.

The first prompt says “introduce yourself” and so here goes, I’m Melissa. I’m thirty something. I’m an attorney. I live in Arkansas. I am attempting to get fit and I like running and yoga. I am quite broad in my emotional states which is probably more fun to watch than to live.

Oh and I’m also doing Reverb 10 this year too. Here’s the prompt.

What was the last thing you made? What materials did you use? Is there something you want to make, but you need to clear some time for it?

(Author: Gretchen Rubin)

The last thing I made was a slight variation on The Pioneer Woman’s Pasta with Tomato Cream Sauce. IN my version, I used penne pasta. I also added more garlic than listed and added red pepper flakes. I was attempting to recreate the pink sauce from Damgoode pies out of Little Rock. I used fresh garlic and a fresh onion. I used tomato sauce out of a can and some organic heavy cream. There you go.

I really want to make a clutch out of a book, like the one Natalie Portman is holding in this picture.

Holidailies 2010 Badge

Letting Go

What (or whom) did you let go of this year? Why?

(Author: Alice Bradley)

This year will be the year that my first close friend died. All of the people who died before this year were grandparents, cousins that I didn’t see very often, parents of friends from college or high school, or people I barely knew. This was the year that one of my confidants, a person on the “bail you out of jail no questions asked/will help you bury the body” list, died.

She was my age. I met her in kindergarten. That’s right. I knew her when I was five. We both got tracked into the gifted and talented track in school but we didn’t become friends until high school. Then we went to college on our separate ways and got back in touch again.

I attended her kids birthday parties. I usually dropped by during the holidays.

She had MS but most days she was doing really well. She was walking and talking fine. She didn’t have any visible symptoms of the disease. Then one day, I got a text message from a mutual friend that she was real sick. I was out of town and by the time I called, she was in a coma. She died the next day.

I still remember how cold her hand was when I touched it when she was in the coffin. I know it’s morbid but for some reason I just reached out and her hand was so cold. I’m guessing that the funeral home keeps the bodies in some sort of refridgerated room. It was creepy.

The kids are now the center of a crazy custody dispute between the biological father and my friend’s parents. I have no control over that. There’s no way in hell that I am far enough away to be objective enough to actually represent anyone in the scenario, In fact, since I witnessed the last conversation between Baby daddy and my friend ever, I was a fact witness and couldn’t do it because the rules of professional conduct forbid that sort of thing. Yet watching the case unfold from a distance was incredibly hard. Since it was my friend, of course, every single thing that was differently than the way I would have done it was the thing that was going to make the case go straight to hell. It’s called a lack of professional distance.

I kept having nightmares that the kids were going to get hurt and that I would go to Heaven and have to explain everything to my friend. I could hear her asking, “why didn’t you get her to do this? Why did this happen? Why didn’t you explain . . . ”

Attorneys, by their very nature, are stubborn and will do pretty much what they want to do. But since I am also attorney, people kept wanting to talk to me about the case. Now that is an even more awkward position. I can’t actually represent them according to the laws of professional conduct. I’m not actually part of the case and so confiding in me seems like such a bad idea. I know that attorney client privilege can be waived by talking to third parties and there I am, a third party but because I am a friend who is also an attorney.

I had to keep my distance. If I got a subpoena, what would I do? I’m not part of the office so there’s no work product or any other privilege that keeps anybody from asking me who the hell knows what. Right now, I don’t even feel comfortable being around certain mutual friends and acquaintances due to the possibility that I get dragged into the case even more than I already am. I don’t want to make anything worse.

I miss the kids. I miss talking to them and yet I feel like every little thing they tell me is going to be subject to some sort of attorney scrutiny from one or the other side. So I feel like I can’t really talk to them. They are out of state so it isn’t as awkward as it could be but it is still awkward.

One time, I went to her grave and all of these emotions came flying out and I started crying and telling her that I was sorry. I didn’t even realize that I felt responsible for anything until I had these lung heavy loud sobs that had me lying on the ground. I finally got myself together when I saw an SUV stopped in front of the cemetery near where I lay.

I got up and wiped my tears and realized I couldn’t do this to myself. I have no control over any of it. I was the best friend I could be. I had to let the rest of it go. The worry regarding the kids and what my friend would say was pulling me under to a very dark place. I had to let go to live.

The Wonder year

How did you cultivate a sense of wonder in your life this year?

(Author: Jeffrey Davis)

As a person prone to depression, I try very hard to do this because it keeps me sane. Or more content with life. I know as a single woman of a certain age that I am going to get all sorts of hell for this but I really do enjoy watching my cat.

It’s so fascinating to watch his mind at work. One day, I came home and watched him drag my pink net shower scrubby into the living room and tear it into a billion pieces. Okay the part where I had to clean it up was not wonderful by the list.

Over the years, he’s managed to unplug the dryer. He knows how to open doors. He can open the cabinets if they don’t have the special locks on them. During the summer when I had those huge “palmetto bugs,” he would hunt and kill those. Okay, when I discovered that he was eating them, I was grossed out.

I named him Buddha Butt because when he was a kitten he was always finding ways to stick his butt in my face. The longer I have him, I realize it’s a fitting name because he is always in the moment, whatever moment he is in. He is passionately biting himself or sleeping with enthusiasm.

There’s something full of wonder about that.

One moment in time (A Reverb10 prompt)

December 3 – Moment. Pick one moment during which you felt most alive this year. Describe it in vivid detail (texture, smells, voices, noises, colors). (Author: Ali Edwards)

Moments. One particularly moment. First, it was hard for me to categorize moments and second, this was a year that it seemed I was going through the motions for so much of the year. This was a year about the realization that things needed to change and that I was the one who was going to have to change them.

I still remember the last couple of miles of the half marathon I walked this year. I had intended to run the thing but due to a lack of training and very odd weather. I haven’t mastered running in the rain. As a result, I didn’t train much due to the craptastically wet winter we had. So I ended up walking most of it with a tight lower back. See kids, training is important. Strangely enough, even though my back was killing me, I was smiling so long and so broad that my cheeks hurt. I remember the sun shining on my face and the gentle breeze. I remember walking by the Designing Women house and the Governor’s mansion. I remember all the volunteers at the water stations cheering me on. By the end, I was one of the last people and so I was the sign that they could pack up and leave. They were happy. I was happy. The jeep was following me as a signal to the police to open up the traffic. I imagined that I was a dictator that had closed the street for her own personal walk. I remember the two people in front of me who at one point turned around and waved to me, “Come on. We’re almost done”

I did end up last. Freaking last but I will remember it as the year that I pretty much on some level wanted to quit at about mile 5 and just kept on going.

Holidailies 2010 Badge

Reverb10 catch up (December 2nd)

Another Reverb10 prompt

What do you do each day that doesn’t contribute to your writing — and can you eliminate it?
(Author: Leo Babauta)

My self conscious perfectionism. Sometimes I will write something and then get antsy and not press publish. Sometimes, it is for the best: it’s too self revealing or some topic that in retrospect, I don’t want out there for the world to see. Other times, it’s due to my sense that I am writing something completely vapid and silly or that my grammar or sentence structure is just heinous.

Now most blogs are not known for their fabulous writing. In fact, the Dooces of the world are the exceptions that prove the rule. Also, life is a combination of the deep and the shallow. Anyone who tells you differently is being a pretentious little shit and you have my permission to slap them. Okay not really, if you are an adult, you could get an assault charge. So don’t slap people!!!

Holidailies 2010 Badge

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