Staring Down the Barrel of a (Hot Glue) Gun

Sometimes your mind can be so open that your brain falls out.

Saturday, June 28, 2008

Making Me Look and Feel Bad

A few years back, my cousing married a really sweet gal from Turkey, who's drive and desire had always been to become a fashion designer. They moved to NYC, ans while she was waiting for her citizenship to be finalized, she got a job working in a bridal boutique while continuing to do her own stuff on the side. Today my mom forwarded me an email that my cousin-in-law had sent. Apparently she'd doing some fashion show down in the Bahamas and has to come up with 50 pieces to display. She also included some photos of recent work she had done as well. Stunning stuff.

Not surprisingly, I started to feel bad about how little I feel like Ive accomplished, and how tiny my portfolio is compared to hers, all with being about 10 years older than she is. Didn't help that the aunt she'd been writing to in the first place is my Aunt Mags too. I may have mentioned I was supposed to make a dress for my A. Mags - fittings and everything from Cali, mind you - for her son's wedding. Eventually she freaked out that it wasn't done yet - still had 3 months until the wedding - and basically told me to forget it, and has not really spoken to me since. So yes, seeing her gush over the inlaw while giving me the cold shoulder stung. A lot.

Eventually I'd really like to find a place where I am ok with myself and my life and not worry about the fact that even at 34 years old I still seem to be a crushing disappointment to my family...

Oh, and not to dis my cousin-in-law, here are some of the fantastic things she's made.

Thursday, June 26, 2008


Not gonna be doing much LOL come October when I have my surgery. OMG.

The surgeon is going to be doing two things: Maxillomandibular Adjustment, or MMA.

The airway is, in essence, confined by the upper and lower jaws. By moving the upper jaw (maxilla) and lower jaw (mandible) forward, the entire airway can be enlarged.
Basically, they'll break both my upper and lower jaw, pull them both forward and reset them, thereby pulling my airway open to a more normal size.

They'll also be doing a Genioglossus Advancement, or a GA.
During genioglossus advancement surgery this small projection is moved forward and the tongue attachment is repositioned anteriorly so that it is less likely to collapse posteriorly and block the airway during sleep.
In English, this means they'll drill a hole in my chin, reach through, grab the tongue muscle, and literally pull it forward, again with the intent of further opening the airway.

Pros for this particular surgery:
* Less painful than alternative surgery
* Should lose about 20% of my body weight while jaw is healing
* Has a 90-95% succes rate, which means I should never require a CPAP again
* Should improve my fatigue, weight loss, clarity (depression?)

* Will not be able to chew anything real for 6 weeks minimum, although I will not be resticted to a liquid diet
* Will literally change the way my face looks

* Invasive, major surgery, and all that comes with that.
* May lose some jaw mobility post-surgery
* May have small numb spots on face (nerve damage)

But IMHO, I still think its worth it. Believe me, I wouldn't sign myself up for this if it wasn't. I'm definitely more nervous about my decision now that I have a date set, and of course I'm worrying about the numb spots and what I'll look like afterwards (oh please, let me not be any more 'unique' looking than I already am...) but again, I don't want to live like this for the next 60 years of my life. Let's git 'er done. **

Oh, and I am so hoping that this time next year I'll look back and be ROTFLMAO. Seriously.

**Surgery is scheduled for October so that I can complete my last quarter of school and graduate. (!!!!)

But Then What Will I Bitch About?

This sleep apnea thing? Not working for me. Two nights ago I started using my seventh style of mask, because I just cannot get one that either a) fits without leaking and being ineffective and just generally irritating, and b) works well at the high pressures I have to use on my CPAP machine. So far, the new mask seems to be working, and you'll never guess how I can tell. Go ahead, ask me! I know that enough of the pressure is getting into my chest to be effective not because I am less sleepy - oh, no, that would be too easy and helpful - but becaAnd sometimes, when I'm lucky, it'll give me acid reflux too! Hooray...I think....

Have I mentioned recently that I still have to tape my mouth shut every night to keep the air in my system as well? Yeah, I have a mostly permanent tape-residue goatee circling my mouth most of the time. That is, when the tape itsself isn't giving me a rash around my mouth. Oh, and I've not had to drink caffeine in the morning for a long time - when you put tape on your mouth, then you've got to rrrrip it off! Every! Fucking! Morning! Oh! My! God!

Yeah, its been swell, but the swellings gone down now. I want off. And off I am going to get starting October 27th. Why is this day so special, you ask? Well, gentle readers, on October 27th, I am going to have surgery to (ohdeargodfingerscrossed) correct/eliminate my sleep apnea so that I never have to use a CPAP or any of its evil cohorts again.

Yes, I have been seeing a facial reconstruction surgeon in secret to discuss what my options are. And I've thought about it and thought about it, and then one night I literally woke up with the CPAP hose wrapped around my neck. Let's I want to deal with this for the next 60 years of my life? Suddenly I didn't have to think about it any more.

Just for reference (and because I have a weird paranoia that people think I'm exaggerating when I have health issues) here is the xray of what my throat looks like when I'm sitting up.:

(Not my most attractive angle, and is anyone else silently humming 'Turning Japanese' to themselves right now?)

Of note:
1) That narrow part in my throat. Can you see that part where the front of my airway looks like it got smashed in by someone's thumb? Yeah, that's bad. Doc told me on average thats supposed to be a 10mm opening; mine is 3. And thats when I'm sitting up. That collapses when I sleep.

2) My tongue. Please not ethe lack of empty space in my mouth. That's because I stole Mick Jagger's toungue - twice - and jammed it in my mouth. My tongue is E-NOR-MOUS. Doesn't really leave room for anyting else, like, say, AIR. Also collapses to the back of the throat during sleep.

3) The soft palette. A little harder to make out in the xray if you don't know what you're looking for. Basically the roof of your mouth, and the back part where your tonsils and uvula are. Surprise, mine's too big, hangs too low, blah blah blah tumor blah. Oh, and you guessed it -- collapses during sleep.

**4) And as an aside, my nose is even bigger than normal becuse at the time I was wearing the evil mask that caused my nose to bruise and swell and, oh, ooze from an open sore, but those don't really relate to the problem. But my deviated septum does!! (Item sold seperately.)

Surgery it is, folks. Surgery it is.

Smo-oke on the Water (and Everywhere Else Too)

The state, the state, the state is on fire,

We don't have no water let the motherfucker burn
Burn motherfucker

Wheee! Fire season is starting early this year in Cali. As you can see, most of NorCal is engulfed in flames. And for those of us who aren't in immediate danger of self-emolation, the air is thick with smoke from fires hundreds of miles away. I recently heard someone describe it as 'stepping outside their house and feeling like they'd just stepped into a cigar bar'. Nice.

Pretty much everyone I know is walking around with their noses wrinkled all the time. The teachers at Mags' school has been explaining it to them as well, so they're not weirded out. Personally, I'm getting some large, crusty and bloody booger action going on. I'll admit, right now I'm actually looking forward to strapping on my mask at night, because then I get to breathe filtered and moist air. That's how nasty it is right now.

The air pollution did make for some stunning, if not slightly post-apocalyptic sun viewing yesterday evening. I'll see if I can grab a photo tonight to share.

And to end this post with yet another appropriate song clip:

She ran calling wiiiiiildfire,
She ran calling wiiiiiiIIIIIiiiild fire,

She ran calling wIIIIIiiiiiIIIIIiiiiiiIIIIIiiiiildfiiiiiiiire....

It Came to Me Like a Bolt of, Err...

There are many things one should not do while tired. Drive. Sign contracts. Juggle sharp things. Operate heavy machinery. Sew.

Yes, its true: sewing while tired is just a recipe for making incredibly stupid mistakes. All I had to do was sew two pieces of fabric together to make a long tube, and then fold over one edge to make a casing for some elastic. That's it. We are talking two rectangles and three seams.

Couldn't do it. Just. Too. Spacey.

While my boss snickered at me, I grumbled, "Goddamit, I'm smarter than a bolt of fabric." And then a little light bulb came on. Smarter than a bolt of fabric. Faster than a bolt of fabric! Stronger than a bolt of fabric!! Visions of Superman swooped through my head as the idea expanded. Eureka!

Wait, you look confused. Didn't you read my mind for the part of the story where I have been meaning to make business cards for myself and have been trying to come up with a catchy/crafty logo and image to stick on there? (Really, what kind of friend are you?)

So, I'm gonna play with this idea for a while; not sure which variation on that theme I'm gonna run with. (Frankly, today the most fitting one would be 'sleepier than a bolt of fabric'. But while true, that's not quite the message I'm trying to get across.) And also, would it be too strange to have something like that be my business card if I was handing it out for photography as well?

I'd love some feedback/suggestions/alternate ideas from any of you folks. No idea is too great to not be ignored!! :D

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

If Yer Bored

Mags sang her heart out in her preschool graduation a weekish ago (she didn't graduate, but all the kids participated.) I truly wish there was some was to capture 20-ish kids all bellowing --er, excuse me, 'projecting strongly' such classics as "Do Your Ears Hang Low" and two verses of "This Land is Your Land" (there are two verses?!? Who knew!)

Not surprisigly, it was all terribly cute, and the set of pix can be found here.

It *Is* Me, Isn't it?

Ok, so I've got someone in my life with whom I have a historically rocky relationship. And in the same thread, this person has told me that they are often uncomfortable talking with me on the phone. Well, ok, not what I really want to hear, but I figure its jsut the way our relationship goes, so oh well.

But today I had someone else show a lack of interest of talking to me and tell me that there's a tension when we speak speak on the phone. Now all I can think is, fuck, it *is* me. Can't just chalk that up to a particulular person's peculiarities anymore, can I?


Thursday, June 12, 2008

And In Totally Unrelated News

Interesting bit of Academy Awards/Oscar trivia. Who knew?

Thinking Outside of the (Cake) Box

Get ambitious and decide to make a cake for a friend's birthday party. Mix ingredients together, pour into pan. Throw pan into oven for 30 minutes. Lick bowl clean.

Place now spit-laden bowl in the sink to be cleaned.** Notice that a) there is an extremely gay reindeer in your kitchen and b) there's something funky going on behind your faucet.

Whoa! Well, *that's* not right. Oh-kay...first a good scrubbing with the sponge and then try filling that in with that Caulk Singles sample.

Hmm, seems simple enough....

Go on a rampage and do the entire perimeter of the sink and the splashboard too. Turned out pretty damned nice. Even have about half a pack of caulk left.

Went on pretty smoothly once you got the hang of it. Only took about 15 minutes, though. What to do until the cake is done?

Killing time. Oooh, frosting!

Cake's done and has cooled off. Time to decorate it.

Curses! Mysteriously I have run out of white frosting, and the guests will be here soon! What to do?!?

Leftovers, you say?

Anybody looking?

I've got an idea...

Caulk Singles -- for *all* your kitchen needs!***

** GE Caulk Singles do not protect against salmonella. Just sayin'. `
***No cakes were harmed in the making of this blog entry. (burp)

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Doing Time

In doing the math, it looks like I spent about 58 hours on Red's dress. Several of those hours were fittings, but several of those fittings involved having to do ruching on the dress by hand while she wore it. Gives me a good idea how long it might take to do another dress that's roughly the same (probably even a high end).

Wedding Pix Posted

I still have to figure out how to more efficiently shrink my pictures so I can post them on Flickr. Having to do them all manually is sucky.

Here they are:

Sunday, June 08, 2008

1...2...3:45, 6/7/8

Flash mob-ish thing performs Bjork's "Oh So Quiet" this past Saturday in Union Square. Tres amusant (good footage, good sound):

Made even more amusing by the fact that *I* was in there, shaking my child-bearing pudge all over the place. Oh yes, there's even proof:

A good reminder not to take yourself too seriously. :)

Oddly enough, we were almost upstaged when a Muni bus pulled up and 30 or so folks dressed as random superheros (spandex, capes, underwear on the outside) poured out to do their own impromptu thing in Union Square about 10 minutes before we were supposed to start. After about 8 minutes they all hopped on the next bus and left. Weirdos.

Also, biting my tongue to not 'apologize' to folks for having to see my big ole tummy popping out from underneath my shirt during the performance. Pretty damn proud of myself for putting my tummy (and the rest of me) out there in Union-Fucking-Square to begin with. :)

Offspring Stories of the Day

Mags has been pretty chatty lately. Here are some of the recent gems:

Mags: Hey mom, can we decorate these eggs? Then we'd have easter eggs!
Me: Well, we could, but its not easter. How about if we make, ummm (searching) ...graduation eggs?
Mags: Awww yeah! That's an excellent idea, mom!! Gimme a high five!


Mags: Teachers are mammals, mom.
Me: I...what?


Mags: Its really bad to get stoned. Being stoned is a bad thing.
Me: Pardon?!
Mags: See, you have to watch out for the asteroids so they don't crash into you because if they do you'll get stoned and getting stoned really hurts.
Me: Yes, yes that's true.


Mags: My brother is dead.
Me: Uhh, what do you mean?
Mags: Well, my brother went into a building full of knives and he got all cut up and then he died.
Me: (horrified, but trying to not make a big deal) Oh, well, uhh....
Mags: But its ok, because I just got another one.
Me: How did you do that?
Mags: I just went to a country far away and got another one.

Wednesday, June 04, 2008


I've really got to stop shooting myself in the foot. I'm running out of things to keep myself from falling over.

I was supposed to do a DJ set at the annual RS event in Willits last year, but do to an unfortunate brain tumor, could not attend, much less spin. I was tres tres disappointed. I even had an idea involving air cannons to make the set even more fun (idea girl!) In fact, I was so set on the idea, I've spent the last year waiting for the opportunity to roll around again so I could carry it out. I pinged the guy who's coordinating the whole thing this year months ago to start the ball rolling. He couldn't promise anything, but asks me to check back in mid-May.

So what do I do?

Get nervous and not only not ping him on my own, but wait until two weeks after he sends out an email asking for DJs to spin this year before responding. Surprise! He forgot I asked, all the slots are filled, he'd feel bad about bumping someone, but he'll keep me in mind if there are any cancellations. Totally fair on his part, far as I can tell. Doesn't mean I'm still not crushed.

Jesus, I'm such a fuck-up sometimes.

Tuesday, June 03, 2008

What Can I Say... I Like Bad Movies!

Saw this one with Zombiegrrrl back in the day. Am waiting for Netflix to ship it to me again as we speak. Pretty much exactly what it promises: Cannibal Women in the Avocado Jungle of Death. Oh yeah, you know you wanna come over and watch it with me. Did I mention it stars the Bill Maher?


I was swimming in boobies Saturday night. Porn star boobs! Teensy boobs! Fake boobs! Fake boobs dangling in decaying flesh, like grapefruit in greying, old gym socks! (Sadly, though, Minnie not only kept her shirt on but put a sweater on to boot. Probably for the best - gives me something to look forward to.)

Yes, I am referring to our hawt date to go see "Zombie Strippers!' this past Saturday. Really, if you have a free evening, some booze, and aren't looking for Sundance material, I'd actually recommend it. I'd even watch it again (avec booze.) It had everything: a political message (a la shots at Bush), a good make-up budget, high production values (for a B movie, anyhow,) and it was incredibly ridiculous. Did I mention the ping pong balls? Oh yeah. Classy flick.

One of my favorite parts of the evening - aside from having too much to drink and being snarky with Minnie - was standing outside and watching the people coming into the theater. Really, there were only two shows playing at that time of night: Zombies, and another Harold & Kumar movie. The well dressed professional couple? What are they going to see?!? The aging, salt and pepper couple? Really? Who knew?!? (But maybe they were just really, really early for the midnight showing of RHPS.)

Anyhow, for a B-movie, I'd give this two thumbs up. Three if you have a penis.

Happy For Them

Now, I'm not saying that giving back the kids is the right thing to do, or that I think their church isn't bat-shit nuts, or that the women aren't oppressed/brainwashed or anything like that, but I admit I totally feel for the mothers who got their kids back yesterday. The one thing I don't doubt is that those mothers love their children with all of their beings and have been miserable without them.

Hell, my kid was gone for 3 days this weekend, and I was breaking out in a rash by the time I got to see her again. These women went 2 months and had the threat of having them permanently removed from them the whole time. I can't imagine.

Yeah, Right.

RALEIGH, North Carolina (AP) -- Sen. Edward M. Kennedy enjoyed "a restful night's sleep" and was walking hospital hallways on Tuesday, one day after undergoing an aggressive brain surgery aimed at slicing away at a cancerous tumor to give chemotherapy and radiation treatments a chance to work.
For the record, if you have brain surgery of any sort, you will not - I repeat - you will not have "a restful night's sleep" whilst in the hospital, especially immediately following the surgery. You will be in some form of ICU, where someone will monitor every vital sign you have hourly, jab you with needles, machines are beeping and wheezing all around you, and you will be in a room full of moaning-in-agony, possibly-retching-loudly patients, who's least concern is whether or not they're keeping you up. Sleeping is the last thing you do in a hospital.

I'm so disappointed. I feel like I can't believe what the news reports anymore...