Friday, December 29, 2006

Anyone want to go watch The Holiday with me?

This is the first time in my whole life that I've had to work between Christmas and New Year's Day. I've always either worked for someone who was closed during that week, or I've taken the time off.

I don't like it one bit.

So this weekend we were planning on going out of town. I was very excited at the prospect of feeling like I had an actual vacation. And now for the big letdown.... due to Addie having a bad cold, we're not going anywhere this weekend. So we'll be here if anyone wants to get together. I'd really like to see The Holiday and I know Col won't want to so if you're interested, call me. We'll do lunch.

Thursday, December 28, 2006

A year of movie reviews

I really haven't been to very many movies this year. Rather than anxiously awaiting a movie's opening weekend, we usually end up going to the dollar theater on a whim and watching whatever is playing at 7:30. The following is a brief review of every movie I saw in a theater in 2006, beginning with the most recent.

Ratings Key:
1- Liked it - Would Recommend
2 - Liked it ok - Probably Wouldn't Recommend
3 - Didn't like it - Wouldn't Recommend

The Prestige - 3
The Illusionist - 1
Marie Antoinette - 2
Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest - 1
Click - 1
The Da Vinci Code - 2
Pride and Prejudice - 1
The Sentinel - 2
The Producers - 2
X-Men: The Last Stand - 2
Mission Impossible: III - 2

Most of these I waited to watch at the dollar movies, so take that for what it's worth. I saw a lot of movies on DVD of course, usually because we wanted to wait to watch them edited on Clearplay.

Friday, December 22, 2006

Breaking the pot luck mold.

Having grown up in a culture that promulgated pot luck meals, I am no stranger to them. Our official company party is always the first week in January and is a very formal affair. This year, we also had a Christmas gift exchange/pot luck lunch. As far as I was concerned, history dictated that there would be a plethora of jello salads, casseroles and homemade desserts. Such was not the case. Instead, there was an abundance of food from AJ's including pasta salad and cocktail shrimp as well as a honey baked ham and other non-homemade deluctables.

Though I will not sneer at the tried and true pot luck, I highly recommend planning them with people who have more money than time.

Thursday, December 21, 2006

A riddle

What row of numbers comes next?


Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Just in case the government owes me money...

I stole the idea from Brian Sack to look up my name and see if I happen to have any unclaimed funds floating out there.

I don't, but about 200 other Aubrey Carters do.

Monday, December 18, 2006

Can you count all the things wrong with this picture?

Besides the obvious racial issue, be sure to not miss the spelling of "Russian". Oh, and just TRY to do that with your left hand.

Friday, December 15, 2006

Thursday, December 14, 2006

Supporting the troops

All of us here at work chipped in and put together several large boxes to send to the troops in Iraq.

Waiting in line at the post office yesterday, we were a little nervous to find out how much postage would be. Little did we know - any packages sent to the troops only require postage to NYC, and then the military takes care of getting it overseas.

It turned out to be a great experience, especially since the lady at the post office was from Québec so we jabbered in Québecois (French... sort of) for awhile.

Hopefully the packages we sent will arrive in time for Christmas, and will bring a little Christmas cheer to those who will be away from their families this holiday season.

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Who's Who

Looks like I'm moving up in the world.

Monday, December 11, 2006

A Christmas music recommendation

I have been sampling online Christmas music streams and I have a couple to recommend for those of you who, like me, sit at a computer most the day.

This one is out of the Netherlands. You'll need to click on the orange link that says "Open de online RTL FM player". It plays pretty much the same music you'd hear on your average American Christmas station, but the commercials are in Dutch and therefore a lot less annoying.

This one is out of France. It plays the songs you're used to as well as music you probably wouldn't hear on your average American Christmas station - international Christmas carols in a variety of languages. Also, it will keep things interesting by throwing in random selections such as a song I just heard that was on The Muppet Christmas Carol.

And just as a side note, some interesting pictures come up when you search google images for pictures of Christmas carolers. Like this one. And this one. Oh, and this one. I chose the picture that looked like it was made on a Lite Brite.

Thursday, December 07, 2006

Now don't get any ideas...

Last night one of the local news channels featured a special report about a new way to steal gift cards. All you have to do is get the numbers off the card and then call in until it's activiated, at which time you can start spending it online.

I don't know about all of you, but I had never thought of that. Granted, even if I had thought of it I wouldn't have done it, but I hadn't even thought about the possibility of someone spending a gift card with only the number on it. Which made me think that a lot of people watching TV last night had never thought of it either. The difference between me and some of them, is that now they'll try it.

I went and told Col about it, as he was in the other room and had missed the report. He allayed my fears when he said, "People who would do that don't watch the news." He's probably right. They're busy watching CSI.

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

Overheard at AJ's Fine Foods

"Hey there Charles, how've you been?"

"Not so good. I was in the hospital all last week."

"Really? Why?"

"I had a gall bladder."

"That's too bad. It seems like you're always having health problems."

Monday, December 04, 2006

Cooking With Baby

I've submitted a pilot to The Food Network for a new cooking show called "Cooking With Baby".

I'd be like Rachel Ray, except that I wouldn't be able to see what I was doing.


Usually, when I open a fortune cookie, there's not really a fortune inside. Rather, it's full of advice, or ancient Chinese wisdom. Today Col and I went to lunch at Pei Wei. Addie was thoroughly amused by the paper-wrapped chopsticks that she amazingly never tried to put in her mouth. And for once, my fortune cookie actually contained a real live legitimate (though very odd) fortune.

"Hidden in a valley beside an open stream, This will be the type of place where you will find your dream." (Photograph provided)

Of course my first thought was "Which valley?! Which stream?!" I was complaining that it wasn't specific enough when Col opened his, which was thankfully much more detailed.

"Hidden five miles due east you will find a key which unlocks the door buried 6.5 feet below the ground on which you stand. The door will open, revealing 3 more doors. Choose wisely. One door leads to imminent destruction." (Not photographed)

His may not have rhymed, but at least he was given some specifics.

Saturday, December 02, 2006

Déjà vu

I know a lot of babies do the "army crawl". However, I never realized how much it resembles the "one-armed Terminator crawl".

Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Please call me Dr. Carter

I would really like to meet someone who claims to have a master's or doctorate from the University of Wexford. As we all know, you can buy a degree and immediately refer to yourself as "Doctor". However, until I started looking into it, I didn't realize just how many unaccredited universities are out there. Even though the University of Wexford at Zurich has been revealed as a fraud, surprisingly, there are still people out there claiming degrees.

This guy, this politician, this guy, and this new member are among them. The list goes on and on.

The greatest is this guy who not only claims "highest honors in International Business Management from University of Wexford, Zurich, Switzerland" which is a fraudulent degree, but he is also a member of the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners, USA.

Now that's irony.

Comments heard at last night's HOA meeting.

It has recently come to our attention that we, along with all the owners in our complex, will shortly be charged $600 to replace the irrigation system. We will then be charged another special assessment, the amount of which is as of yet undisclosed, to replace plants and repair landscaping torn up by the construction of the new irrigation system.

Last night I attended our HOA's monthly board meeting to find out some details. There were some real characters in attendance. Here are some highlights:

"What's your supervisor's name? Does he speak English?"

"Are you going to gouge us with this assessment right when we're paying Christmas bills?!"

"Shut up, Mona."

"Everyone should dig up their patios! I found this diamond necklace buried in mine. I warshed it up and it looks real nice."

"Can't we just get rid of all the grass and put in rocks and cactus?"

"Shut up, Betty."

"If we wanted to do it ourselves, we'd buy a house!"

The best moment came when one particularly outspoken woman yelled, "If I can't complain here, who can I complain to?!" and one of the board members responded, "Maybe a therapist?"

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

I am very good in business.

The other day Carl was reading us an email he received from a Nigerian businessman who generously wanted to donate large sums of money in any bank account Carl could provide.

Then today I stumbled across this. Great fun.

One thing Canada did right.

I don't really expect vents and grates to give way and send me plummeting into the sewer, but I still avoid walking on them. I'm not sure why. Maybe it stems from seeing cows with their legs stuck in cattle crossing grates when I was a little kid.

This picture was taken in Calgary, Canada, by a girl whose blog I read. This is one grate I wouldn't mind walking on. I think they should all be like this. And so, I will now be sending a petition around to all of you that we will forward on to the President's office. That should get results.

Monday, November 27, 2006

Saturday, November 25, 2006

She learned this from her dad.

A floor to ceiling mirror covers one wall of our dining room, which is more like a kitchen niche. Ever since we moved in, Col has been watching himself eat in the mirror. We placed Addie's booster seat so that her back is to the mirror, but it does no good.

This is yet another reason we feed her naked whenever possible. You try feeding someone seated in this position.

The down side of living in Arizona.

In Arizona a vehicle theft occurs every 9 minutes, 54 seconds.

Yesterday Col and I went to pick up my dad's SUV to deliver a couple of paintings. It wasn't there, for it had been stolen. We called the police to report it and they asked me about all of this. Layer #1 we had covered. We did all of that right. Layer #2 not so much. Layers #3 and #4, not at all. And to top it all off, we only had liability insurance which of course doesn't cover theft.

The girl at the police station pretty much said "Yeah, it's probably in Mexico by now. You better find yourself a new car." Thanks for the encouragement.

So the next time any of you head to Rocky Point, if you see a white Chevy Blazer with Idaho plates rolling around, let me know.

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Full Circle

It is getting quite difficult to change Addie. Tonight I was able to secure photographic evidence of the ordeal. It wasn't easy. It's hard enough to keep her from launching off the changing table, as you can see from my hand seen spotting her in a few of the pictures.

Right back to where we started.

Go to sleep, little baby.

Last night Col and I felt like going to a movie. It was kind of last minute, so we took Addie with us. We were hoping that if we went to a movie that started at her bedtime, she'd just sleep right through it. As always, we opted for the dollar movies. We were hoping she'd fall asleep on the drive there, but she didn't. We were then hoping she'd fall asleep in the dark, fairly quiet theater before the movie started, but she didn't.

Imagine my shock when the minute the very loud previews started, she zonked right out. She then slept through the entire movie (Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest). Good thing, too. I don't think she'd have liked that Cracken fellow.

Monday, November 20, 2006

Just married.

A friend of mine saw these cars the other day in the Cardinal stadium parking lot. The little voice on my right shoulder is appalled. The little voice on my left shoulder thinks I should go wander around the parking lot with a white grease pen.

Friday, November 17, 2006

The new Playstation 3 is to die for!

Or at least to get seriously injured for! If you're willing to get

pelted with BBs
a dislocated jaw

and THEN spend $600... by all means, knock yourself out.

Or you could save yourself the hospital bills and spend $15,000 to buy one on e-bay. Even better, you can get John Edwards to use his connections to get one for you.

So... I thought $15,000 was a lot until someone spent $44,000 for one. I'm in shock. You can buy a summer home in Idaho for that.

Thursday, November 16, 2006

I am Pam.

I never realized until today how much I have in common with Jenna Fisher's character Pam on The Office. Sure, maybe I don't live in Scranton, PA and I didn't just break up with my fiancé of 10 years, but there are definitely similarities. For example, we have the same stapler.

And everything she says about it is true.

Looks like I can only link to her myspace page, and not the actual post, so I will also post what she said about it here. You can read it on her blog of Thursday, Oct. 19.

"In other news… a new prop appeared on my desk the other day and it is REALLY AWESOME! What is it? The PaperPro One Finger stapler. You can staple a stack of up to 15 papers with just one finger! Now, I'm kind of a stapler snob. Having been a real secretary for many years I've done my share of stapling. There is nothing more frustrating than having a stapler jam when you are in the middle of a big collating project. I only like Swingline metal desk staplers. I HATE plastic staplers. I also hate hand-held staplers. So when I saw this little PaperPro number on my desk I was skeptical. I thought, "Whoa! I don't do plastic. I want my big fellow back." (That's what she said.) I think it was Brian who got me to try it. We spent 20 minutes stapling various stacks of paper. That may not seem like very long but try staying entertained for 20 minutes using the stapler on your desk. It's not easy. Anyway, this little number makes stapling fun. All hail the PaperPro!"

Well said, Pam. It will actually staple through 30 sheets if you use 2 fingers. It's fabulous.

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Choreography and karaoke go hand in hand

This video may be more entertaining for those of you who know Bryant and Aaron.

'Tis not the season yet.

My understanding is that it's generally accepted that "The Christmas Season" begins the day after Thanksgiving. The management company here at work is jumping the gun a little bit... This tree was assembled and lit up yesterday.

Merry Christmas! It's November 14.

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

I don't look like Donald Sutherland, do I?

This website has a face recognition program, where you upload a photo and then they scan through their databases to find which celebrities you look like.

When I uploaded this picture, they said I look like these celebrities:

Josie Maran
Alyson Hannigan
Jessica Alba
Jena Malone
Lynda Carter
Heather Graham
Alicia Silverstone
Sarah Michelle Gellar

Be careful which photo you choose, though, or you may have the fun experience I had. When I uploaded this photo, they told me I look like these celebrities:

Roberto Benigni
Jet Li
Sondre Lerche
Chester A. Arthur
Donald Sutherland
Jose Carreras

I think they threw Chester A. Arthur in there JUST to hurt my feelings.

To the person stealing our Arizona Republic:
Ye be warned.

For some time now, I've had to call to have the paper reissued whenever it isn't here, which lately is a few times each week. It was possible that someone was taking it in ignorance, so I've been working with our carrier and our management office to insure that this isn't the case. They've started putting our suite number on our copy, and sending threatening emails reminding the tenants that certain papers are paid subscriptions so they should keep their grubby hands off.

It's not working. Someone is still snatching it, either under the cover of darkness when the papers are still outside before the building is unlocked, or in broad daylight after they are brought inside. The management company refuses to deliver them to our actual front door, or to install any high security night vision infrared security cameras. (I don't know why - I thought it was a great idea.)

So I may have to take matters into my own hands. Maybe I'll watch this movie tonight.

Sunday, November 12, 2006

I will never get a speeding ticket again.

Just to set the record straight, I've never donated money to the Police Officers of Scottsdale Association. However, someone I work with does, and the other day when the check was picked up, they dropped off a sticker and a coffee mug, and another sticker for me - just for being the "middle man" I guess.

Now, clearly the POoSA appreciate any monetary donations. My question: Do they take it into consideration when they pull someone over and then notice this sticker on their back window? I guess we'll find out. This is the sticker on my car:

It will probably be removed as soon as Col drives it. He doesn't believe in sticking things to your car. Or in taking credit for something you didn't actually do. I really just put the sticker on so I could blog about it. Is that obsessive that sometimes I do things just so I can write about it on my blog?

Friday, November 10, 2006

Probably shouldn't quit my day job.

Awhile back when I was still great with child, some of our friends came over and brought clay and we all sculpted. I forgot all about it until it was mentioned here. I thought the figure I sculpted had been thrown away by the anti pack rat I live with, but to my surprise and joy it was still hidden out of sight in the kitchen where I'd seen it last.

As I was forming it I began to realize it was looking somewhat like the Willow Creek figurines, only not very accurate and much less well-formed. Regardless, if anyone wants this to be the Mary & baby Jesus of their Nativity scene, I would have no problem with that.

I wish I had a picture of the man-eating alligator David sculpted. Alas.

Happy 25th Anniversary Birthday!

When the company I work for had its 25th Anniversary, they ordered stickers. I wasn't yet with the company at that time, so I don't know exactly what they used them for, but I do know that they had a lot left over. I've come across full rolls of stickers stashed here and there, and at one point was asked to throw them all out. Unbeknownst to me, a very resourceful co-worker hid them away for a rainy day. Today it's my boss's birthday and it happened to be pouring out.

Does anyone else think my arm & hand look a little wierd in this picture?

A quandary.

The company I work for has 2 tickets plus parking for Sunday's Cardinals football game. In case you are worried about my eternal salvation, the quandary is not whether or not I should go to the game. I have, however, been put in charge of the tickets and was sent an email that stated:

"I will put them on your desk - distribute any way you want to - drawing, your favorite, etc."

A friend here at work said she would like them, so it was pretty cut and dry what I'd do. However, I then discovered that an email had been sent to all employees telling them to let me know if they're interested in the tickets. I have since received about 20 emails, one of which is from another good friend here at the office.

What to do, what to do....

The way I see it, I have 3 choices:

1. Use them myself

2. Have a drawing

3. Have an auction and give them to the highest bidder

*You really don't have reason to worry about my eternal salvation - #1 is a joke and #3 is at least 75% in jest