Wednesday, June 29, 2011

"You can't fight country" Part 2

So we left off last time with the story about TC and TT driving The General Lee across the street to see Teh Dad and getting pulled over on the way home..  That was last summer.  1 year ago.

Map and Key in case you forgot:

Red Diamond = where all the action takes place.  It is actually the end of the road I grew up on.  When Teh Dad bought a house, he bought a house literally across the street.  
Red Circle = VERY bad place to pull out into traffic.  You can't really tell from the image, but its actually halfway down a small hill, meaning when you turn out onto the street, you have to gun it and hope that no one is coming.  Have I/we pulled out in front of people before?  Yes, often.  Its a REALLY bad place to have a driveway.
Orange Arrow = Teh Dad's house
Yellow Arrow = TC/TT house
Green Line = Directions from Teh Dad's to TC/TT's house.

My family (apparently)...  Bo, Luke, and Rosco...  /siiigh (image)

Part 2...
Let me back up and say that both part 1 and part 2 were relayed to me on Father's Day 2011 over Skype.  So this is just me retelling the story...  for your entertainment, to show you the wounds that haven't become scars yet on my psyche.

Teh Dad is a pretty good handy man when it comes to getting things done around the house.  But, because he's been in NC for so long and started to assimilate to the redneck ways, he's become more... "imaginative" in ways to get things done.  This hurts my soul a bit.

So, The Day Before Father's Day 2011 (TDBFD11)....  Teh Dad decided that it was the day for the dead/dying tree to be removed from the yard.  "It only had about 20 green leaves this year," was his proof that it had kicked the bucket.  I didn't fight it.  It isn't my yard and the 2 times that I've visited in the past 2 years, I didn't really notice the dead/dying tree.  His prerogative.     

Teh Dad:
I had to decide how I was going to get rid of this tree.  I could just saw it down and then cut it up, but then I would have to deal with the stump.  And this is a big tree.  I couldn't pull that stump out on my own.  So, I decided that I'd just get the truck and pull the whole tree over.  So that's what I did.  I put a chain around the tree and hooked it to the truck.  I started spinning a little bit, but finally the wheels caught and the whole tree, stump and all were leaning over.  I was glad the the stump had come out.  But now I was stuck again.  I had to figure out how to get this tree out of the yard.  I could cut it up and bring it to the neighbor's (meaning across the street to the relatives), but that still left me with the stump and it wasn't a one man job.  So, I thought about calling TC to see if he could come help me with it.  Then I had a better idea...
At this point, Teh Dad burst into giggles and was laughing so hard he was crying.
Me, laughing at Teh Dad laughing: Oh no.  This isn't good..
tD: Since the tree was already hooked up to the truck, I figured I'd just drag it to the neighbor's.
Me, not laughing: You WHAT?!  (I get that "WHAT" straight from Teh Dad, so its only fair I get to use it on him)
tD: I was going to drag the whole tree to the dump.  (Which is located on the neighbor's (by neighbor he means his uncle and cousins) property)
Me:  Behind the truck?
tD:  Well, yeah, how else?  Let me finish!
Me:  I'm scared.  
tD, chuckling the entire time:  Since the tree was already halfway tipped over and out of the ground, I figured I'd just drag it across the street.  I figured by the time I got it up our road, that it would have a flat place on the bottom, so it would drag just right.  
Me: Riiiight.
tD:  So, I decided I was just gonna do it.  The truck's tires squealed, but I got started up the hill.  Then I realized that if I stopped at the top of the hill for the stop sign, I was going to have some trouble getting started again, so I checked to make sure there wasn't anything coming from the right.  There was a car at the top of the hill, but I knew I'd be ok.  And since you can't see the other way, I figured if I gunned it, hopefully they'd have time to notice and stop..
Me, giggling:  Before they hit a tree?
tD:  Well.. yes.  Anyways, I gunned it and made the turn and I guess I underestimated how flat the tree should have been on the stump from dragging it up the road, because that tree just kept rolling across the road.  The car was still coming down the road, but they had slowed down.  Which was good, because at this point the tree was blocking the entire road.  
Me:  Apparently, that wasn't supposed to happen.
tD:  Well, no, the flat place wasn't very flat.  So I straightened out and finally got the tree behind me, but by this point the car had stopped.  I turned on my signal and turned onto the neighbor's driveway.  Then I looked up and realized that the car that had been stopped was turning around on our road and put blue lights on and was headed for me.  
Me: /face palm.  
tD: It was the sheriff's deputy (SD).  I just stopped at the end of the driveway, because I knew there was no point in trying to keep going.  He got out of his car, inspected the tree on his way to the truck, and said, 'You wouldn't happen to be related to Bo and Luke would ya?'  I responded, Well, sir, my last name is Roscoe.

At which point, he paused and began laughing till he cried again..  and simultaneously, I realized he had made his own Dukes of Hazzard reference.. to get out of a ticket... by purposely pronouncing our name wrong.  /face palm #2 with attempted suppressed laughter to not encourage Teh Dad, and to mask the slight irritation that he's purposely said our last name wrong just so he could make a Dukes of Hazzard reference to get out of the ticket.
    SD:  Excuse me?  
    tD:  One second, I'll show you my license.
    SD:  Well, I'll be damned.  What the hell are you doing dragging a tree down the road?
    Teh Dad then recounted the story of pulling the tree out of the yard, and added in how it was just easier to pull it across the street than have to cut it up, struggle with the stump, which was not a one-man job, and then haul it all across the street.  But he did offer to stop dragging it if the officer wanted to wait for him to unhook the tree, go across the street to get the chainsaw, he'd cut it up...  If the officer would help him put the stump in the bed of the truck.  

At this point, my mouth is hanging open.  These people are my relatives?  NO WAI!
    SD:  I'm going to have to stop coming this way.  You and your cousins, Bo and Luke, are gonna get me killed one day.  Just get rid of this tree, and don't do this again, Mr. Roscoe.
    tD:  Yes, sir.

Cue mouth hanging open even more.  Same officer, 2 ridiculous acts, neither of them got a ticket.. WTF?  Teh Dad did mention that dragging the tree down the dirt road had really smoothed it out.  And he considered dragging it up and down a few times to  "get it really smooth."  When we lived there, it was always an adventure to dodge the potholes, because there were ALWAYS potholes in the driveway.
Me:  Tell me you didn't.
tD:  No, but I seriously considered it.  Just going up and down the driveway once or twice, turning around at the top of the driveway.  But I didn't want the sheriff's deputy to see me and think I was playing around, so I just took it too the dump.
Me:  What a good idea.

Or he'll kick a tree's ass.. But still, so redneck hardcore.... (image)
I retold this story to Teh Bear a day or so after Teh Dad told me.  I don't tell it as funny as Teh Dad does, but then again, I wasn't crying when I retold the story.  Apparently, teh Stepmom did NOT approve of Teh Dad's antics.  She immediately asked if any of their neighbors had seen him and said she couldn't believe he would do that.  Which of course, made me laugh, because, being the older child, I revel in things that aren't approved of by parental figures.

I really wish I had an audio recording of Teh Dad telling this story because it was hilarious, one of those stories I could listen to and it would always be funny.  His reactions to his telling of the story and the ridiculousness that was part 1 and part 2, the fact that part 1 directly related to part 2, even though it was a year later.  The fact that even though I didn't want his redneck ways to be funny, they really were, which was even more funny when teh Stepmom didn't approve.  

The entire time Teh Dad was telling his story, I kept thinking about a conversation Teh Bear and I had a few months prior where he made a sign that said, "You can't fight country" because I was trying to prove to him that just because I'm from NC doesn't mean I'm a redneck.  Apparently, you can't argue with a sign.  What kind of yankee logic is that?

The final thing about the story was that it made me further embrace when people say my last name wrong, which has been a difficult thing for me over the last 25 years.  

Side story:
Since I joined the Navy, I have pretty much given up on correcting people when they say my last name wrong, sad but true.  When I was in boot camp, I was chosen to help with an inspection and was given a bravo zulu for doing a good job.  The Chief I had assisted asked me what my name was and I told her.  My RDC (drill instructor) was standing there, and said, I've been pronouncing your name wrong this entire time?!?!  
Me: Yes, Petty Officer.
RDC:  Why didn't you correct me?
Me:  Well...  
RDC:  Nevermind.  Go away, (correct last name).
Me, with a smile:  Yes, Petty Officer.
She never pronounced it wrong again after that.  :)

PS.  You can definitely fight country.. Just not if you have relatives like mine..  /face palm #3.


Monday, June 27, 2011

"You can't fight country" Part 1

Ok, let me start this off by saying a few things.
1.  Teh Dad is from UPstate, New York.. And by UPstate, I mean like, "hello, Canadian Border, how are you today," close.  
2.  Since Teh Dad is from UPstate, NY, he is a Yankee.
3.  Teh Dad moved to North Carolina in the early 80s.  I wasn't here yet, so I don't know the year.
4.  Most of Teh Dad's relatives that are now in NC are displaced Yankees.  They all came from UPstate, NY.
5.  Apparently, being in the South for too long means that you're Yankee disposition starts to fade.
6.  When your Yankeeness goes away, it must be replaced with something.
7.  Usually the "something" is redneckness.  
8.  :(

**I purposely made it UPstate, to empahize just how NORTHERN Teh Dad is could be was.

There is a lot of set up involved in this story, so be patient, I promise its worth it.


Red Diamond = where all the action takes place.  It is actually the end of the road I grew up on.  When Teh Dad bought a house, he bought a house literally across the street.  
Red Circle = VERY bad place to pull out into traffic.  You can't really tell from the image, but its actually halfway down a small hill, meaning when you turn out onto the street, you have to gun it and hope that no one is coming.  Have I/we pulled out in front of people before?  Yes, often.  Its a REALLY bad place to have a driveway.
Orange Arrow = Teh Dad's house
Yellow Arrow = TC/TT house
Green Line = Directions from Teh Dad's to TC/TT's house.

Ok.. so part 1.

TC is my cousin.  His son is TT.  My Yankee NC family likes to raise their sons to be "hell raisers", simple explanation.  Most of my Yankee NC family is VERY into racing, be it NASCAR or local races.  When I was growing up, Teh Dad was on a different cousin's racing crew.  Teh Dad drilled a hole through his finger once while working on the car, no jk.  

Things haven't changed since I was little.  People have moved (like Teh Dad moving across the street), but as much as things are different, they are still the same.

TC apparently participates in demolition derbys.  He has a hollowed out car, called The General (Lee).  Some of you have already got a picture of this car in your head, because you recognize the name.  But let me show you.
The General Lee from Dukes of Hazzard (photo)
This is the car from Dukes of Hazzard.  A show that I have NEVER EVER SEEN IN MY ENTIRE LIFE, but I know ALL about it because my last name, which will become more important in part 2.

Because The General is for demolition derby, the car is hollowed out on the inside, with the appropriate steel piping laid down, there is only 1 seat, no seat belt, no lights...  NOT street legal.  But because I'm from Podunk, and there's plenty of places to drive around where I grew up, TC often puts TT on his lap and they take The General for a spin.  They always say on the dirt road, because cops don't go there.

One day last summer, TC and TT decided to go visit Teh Dad.  They decided that since it was such a short drive, they'd just take The General, no big deal, right across the street, easy day.  From TT/TC's house to the red diamond, the road is dirt.  From that intersection, you can see what is coming from both directions, so they arrived at Teh Dad's with no issue.  They were there for a while, then it was time to return home.

Because the red circle intersection is so tricky, TC decided to just gun it out of the drive way, spinning tires and fish tailing into the opposite lane.  There was a car coming, but he was out of the way in time.  And it about 8 seconds from Teh Dad's road to the dirt road... Then TC realized the car that was passing him was the sheriff's deputy as he then fishtailed into the dirt driveway.  Immediately, the blue lights turned on and the deputy turned his car around on Teh Dad's road.  TC was smart enough to just stop at the Red Diamond, realizing that there was no getting out of this one.  The deputy pulled in behind him.

Summarized convo:
Deputy: I don't even want to get started.  Who are you supposed to be, Bo and Luke?
TC: I don't really want you to get started.  But I know there's many problems with this situation.  And I know there's no seat belts, and only one seat, and no windows, and no lights and no signals..  But let me explain.  My cousin lives right across the street (he pointed for emphasis) and we went to visit him.  This has never happened before and it will never happen again.  I know this is wrong.

I'm not really sure how or why, but he told TC it better never happen again, and let him go.  As the deputy was walking away, TT (who is under the age of 10) said in true son of a NC Yankee fashion, "Damn pig."  Reminder: there were no windows in the car.  Before the deputy could reconsider, TC started the car and went home.

Oddly enough, this is a normal adventure for my family members.  But, usually, I expect my yankee relatives to uphold a higher standard.  Apparently, they've assimilated and adapted to NC culture (very well) and the redneck is now undeniable...

Which leads us to part 2....


Saturday, June 25, 2011

going bald..

14.. 17.. 28.. 32.. 47.. 68.. 79.. 91.. 101! (Google search)
Teh Mom always used to say this thing about brushing your hair for 100 strokes a day.  It makes it grow or some craziness.  I got bored after however many it would take to just brush my hair regularly, so I never really did the test.  But I've decided that its probably a bad idea for me to experiment with this now.

1.  When I brush my hair in the morning, I have to clean out my brush at least once because of all the hair that has fallen out.  This doesn't include what landed on the floor/in the sink/what will come out when I put my hair up for work.
and because I'm a hair freak I have to clean out my brush EVERY TIME... (image)
2.  When I wash my hair in the shower (daily, hello oily hair), after every shampoo AND condition, HANDFULS of hair fall out.
icky.  (google search)
3.  So much hair falls out when I'm in the shower that every 4-5 days I have to clean out the drain because the water doesn't drain fast enough for me (I really don't like standing in water that doesn't drain, especially if it can cover my little toes, when its up to my ankles, we're in serious trouble)
Oh hair catcher.. how you hold no candle to me..  (google search)
4.  I'm trying to be nicer to my hair.  Instead of just pulling it down after work, I've started untwisting the hair ties instead of dragging them all the way down my hair (which causes breakage and even more hair to fall out)...  this doesn't mean hair doesn't still fall out or isn't broken all the way down (</3 having to wear my hair up for work).

This doesn't necessarily seem to be related to anything really.  I know that sometimes stress can cause hair loss, but it doesn't seem like on the days that I really notice all the hair falling out are days that I'm stressed.  Exactly the opposite, its days that I've been lazy that my hair also feels like "unwinding" and decides to clog my shower drain.. 


PS.  Hair clogs are VERY high on the list of grossest things EVARRRRR.  Just sayin'.  /gag.


Friday, June 24, 2011

Some random thoughts...

1.  When people confirm how much being in the Middle East sucks, I feel justified in all the whining I've done.

2.  I heard all about desert heat in the summer.  No one warned me about the stupid wind, that kicks up the stupid dust.  The dust "storm", which now I'm doubting is actually a real dust storm, but more just the wind "driving too fast" (story related to childhood) which is stirring up the dust that never actually gets blown away, just around.  My body isn't handling this well.  The doc said it was a virus, but I'm dubious about this instead just being my body not responding well to the dust, and they can't say, well, you aren't dealing well with the local environment, but enjoy your remaining 5 months here.

3.  Did I just say 5 months?  Not 4/5, not 3/4.. a definitive 5?  Yes, I did.  I got hard copy orders this week and the only other time I've been more excited, while in Bahrain, was when I got my verbal orders a few months ago.

4.  The only times I'll be more excited than anything orders related, while in Bahrain, is when Teh Bear arrives in 13 days (under 2 weeks!?!?!) and when I leave this dust-forsaken island.

5.  This weekend is Teh ZepZep's birthday.  I wasn't really there for the first one, obviously.  I was there for the 2nd one, but now I've missed 3 and 4.  That's what my life has come to, a series of missed out events like birthdays (and my dog's isn't the most important that I've missed), weddings, funerals, fun get togethers.. all because I chose the military life.  Sometimes I definitely have to use the scale to see the pros vs the cons.

6.  Sometimes when I read FB and see someone post "at least we have netflix on our phones" because the internet is out...  I kinda want to freak out on them.  Something to the effect of, "what would you do if this was 1892 and there was no internet and all you had was a wooden wheel and a stick to entertain you?!?!?!  You ungrateful....."  Then I realize, I've been that person before, but I did also give myself the 1892 argument, then I sighed and checked to see if the internet was working yet before decided I was "hungry" (aka bored eating) and prayed to the internet gods that after I finished eating the internet would be revived.

7.  This has been a difficult week.

8.  Next week will be less difficult, but more anxious, because Teh Bear will be almost on his way.

9.  I really should be productive about Teh Bear's visit.  Maybe change the sheets or something?  Make sure the lamp on the other side of the bed works.  Make some space for him to hang up clothes (I don't have dressers so hanging is the only option unless he wants to stack his clothes in the chair).  I only spend a consistent 72 hours at home during the week, this doesn't include sleeping while I'm on my working shifts.  There isn't really much to clean.

10.  Teh Bear said that I'd do cleaning of some sort before he gets here, because that's what I do when people come to visit.  I blame that on Teh Mom.  But honestly, I just rather not have a pile of dirty socks and undershirts sitting beside my dining room table when people arrive.

11.  Someone on FB spelled uber: "oober".  This makes me cringe and also further proves why using the word "uber" isn't ok.  Additionally, it rhymes with goober, and no one likes to be called a goober, its just awkward.

12.  I miss going to yoga.  Particularly, GTMO yoga.  I hope Pax River has yoga classes.

13.  When I was in GTMO, I started going to Mass, again.  I liked it.  I miss it.  Because I'm in Bahrain and the weekends are Fri/Sat instead of Sat/Sun, church services are offered on Friday, and there is also a daily mass at noon each day (except for Fri).  Working my ridiculous schedule doesn't work with other scheduled activities.  And church being on Friday is weird in my head.  I'm ready to be in 'Merica again.

14.  What do doctors see when they look in your ears with their special tools?  Getting my ears looked at used to be is still my favorite part of going to the doctor.  Don't know why, I think I'm just a freak.  Its all good until the light starts making the plastic warm which starts to burn the inside of my ear..

14a. (story)  Usually, when you go to medical, they finally call you to your room, after waiting at least 10-15 minutes past your appointment time, which you arrived 15 minutes early for, and they get your vitals.  To include your temp and your blood pressure.  Yesterday, when I went to medical (for the 2nd time in 2 days), they finally called my name, and the HM3 took my blood pressure, and left.  I was confused, normally they take my temp, but maybe since I was here yesterday?  Eh, whatever.  I laid back and waited on the doc to come in.  He came in and said he'd be back.  Uhhh, ok, I'll be here, all day, like always.  Siiiigh.  Then the HM3 came back with a temp machine.  While I held the thingy under my tongue he said something about how the Chief was gonna kill him because he found a machine first.  The Chief came back with a temp machine in his hand.  Then told the HM3 to open up, because he wasn't gonna go find something and not use it.  So I got my temp taken and so did the HM3.  Then the Chief came back after the HM3 left.  I pointed out to the Chief that there had been a temp thing on the wall the entire time that neither of them had seen, he kinda looked at me, like well then, who's the idiot..  Go, go 3910 skillz, I mean I am practically an HM anyways... lol.

15.  I'm trying to come up with some playlist ideas, and I'm not really good at them.  I'm a pro at all music, shuffle though.. But apparently, thats not so good for setting a mood.  Hrm.

16.  I've come up with a pretty extensive list of things to do while Teh Bear is in Bahrain.  He's most excited about the Mini GP race at the Formula 1 track.  I'm really hoping I can pull together a group of people willing to spend 25BD for an hour and a half of racing after 1030pm..  There's a lot of tricky variables in that.

17.  Sometimes, I lack professionalism at work.  But I know there's always at least one other person who can hands down, always win the unprofessional award when in competition with me.  This person makes me want to be more professional, and makes me want to punch them in their face sometimes because of how embarrassing they can be.  Yet, sometimes, when their farts run people out of our shop, it is high amusing.  This doesn't mean I want to hear about their poop stories.

18.  Today my Warcraft acct expires.  I haven't played since June 1st.  I miss it very little.  I miss socializing with the Wow peeps much more.

19.  I'm not allowed to PT for 2 weeks because my snot won't drain.  No jk.  Hate this place.  No jk.

20.  I think after sleeping for 12 hours, 4 hours of awakeness, is long enough time to deserve food, drugs, then naptime.

****This blog will not take the place of tomorrow's regularly scheduled "I will post a blog at least every other day" blog.  Yer welcome.  :)
****Sorry there were no pics.  It was just way too much effort today.


Wednesday, June 22, 2011

23. My Worst Kiss

Kissing has the potential to be very awkward.  I mean obviously, you usually kiss people you're close to which is very personal.  So bad kisses are taboo.  Do you tell someone they are a bad kisser?  or do you just try to lead them differently and hope they figure out that you're purposely tryin to change things up?

Until recently, I wasn't a cheek kisser, so for me, when I talk about kissin, its lips to lips, usually romantic in association.  My family doesn't really kiss, we hug, which is alright with me.

My embarrasing admittance/story.
I once saw people kissing on tv with their mouths open, tongues playing around and I learned that this was called French Kissing.. I tried to do it to Teh Mom.  She was slightly freaked out, so was I, so it never happened again.  Oops, my bad, blame the child.  I was really young, so if she asked me why, I probably told her I saw it on TV and she said that wasn't how kids kissed their parents.  I'm sure it was probably a funny story for Teh Dad when he came home though.  Hey, your daughter french kissed me today... awkwarrrd.

So my worst kiss evar?  Make it plural, worst kisses ever?

(not really sure what this site is about)
There was one guy that liked to examine my tonsils with his tongue.  And I couldn't say anything, literally and figuratively.  I mean, how do you nicely say, hey if you could not put your ENTIRE tongue in my mouth, that'd be greatttt.. kthx?   Cause I'm not really sure how.  So instead, I tried to lead by example.  Mostly, by NOT putting my tongue in his mouth..  And when he started to get to "tonsil-y", I'd need a "breather".  This definitely didn't put a stop on the habit.

I started to worry this guy was gonna hit my gag reflex one day..  That leads to a pretty bad image in my head, but still amusing nonetheless.  The thought of kissing this guy wasn't appealing to me.  Especially after my attempts to change the kissing style were fails.  It definitely didn't work out, not just because the kissing problem, which makes me feel less shallow while writing this.  :)

And can I just say for the record that talking about the technicalities of kissing is only semi-awkward.  Especially knowing that sometimes Teh Parents read Teh Blog.. hehe (nervous laughter).


Monday, June 20, 2011

Smart-assery... undetected.

(Google search)
Ya know how sometimes in life you have to deal with idiots?  Well, I try not to purposely have this happen to me, because idiots annoy me, piss me off, and generally can invigorate such a rage in me that I fear having to speak to them because of things I might say.  Unlucky for me, pretty sure that most people that I have to work with (not necessarily face to face, or officer vs enlisted, etc etc) are idiots.

Granted, there are times that I'm an idiot too.  I'll ask stupid questions or read something incorrectly, and I'm sure the other person is thinking "what a fucking moron."  So I mean, its fair to call someone else(s) an idiot if you recognize that you can also be an idiot.  Right?  Right.

Part of my job here is to monitor chat rooms.  Technology is an amazing thing.  Pretty sure Admiral Fox was briefing NAVCENT from one of the carriers the other day.  Our shop couldn't figure out what the BOOMING voice was that we kept hearing, so we peered into neighboring room and plastered across the VTC screens (which took up most of a wall and there were smaller screens around the room) was Adm. Fox, who was hanging out in a conference room with some other (probable) big wigs talkin to us from a boat.  Magical.

Chat is tricky.  Because there isn't a special sarcastic font.  And often, you don't actually know, know the person you're chatting with.  You don't know that they think anything that could be misconstrued as perverted breaks them out into a case of the giggles (that's me) or if they have a super dry sense of humor and they are attempting to be funny, because they've asked you to do a task that they could do themselves, but they're too lazy, and you both know it.

When I get a chat that pisses me off, it usually ensures either 2 things for my coworkers.  Worrying or entertainment.  Worrying that I might fly off the handle and just start pounding (louder than normal, because apparently I'm a speedy typer) on the keyboard and say something out of line or extremely unprofessional to mirror what I'm actually saying outloud.. or that I'll just say those things outloud and NOT type them in the chat box which is just entertaining..  Pretty sure there have been sighs of relief after my outbursts when there was a significant pause in angry keyboard pounding.

(google search)
On the other hand.  I try to often compose my text in ways to include hints of "you are an idiot" with "here is the information you need" with smart-assery.  What makes me sad is that often the "you are an idiot" part doesn't come across as well as I intended.  I've reread chats that I've had with someone (lower ranking) that was tasking me with something that had been done, and that could be redone by their own imagery shop, but they didn't want to deal with their own guys, so they were telling me, NOT asking me, to do it over.  My rage wasn't quite getting through.  I was disappointed.  I hope that asshole enjoys all the spam mails he gets from our shop because I insisted on adding him to our distro so he wouldn't have to bother ANYONE ELSE in our shop, since he'd caught several of us already.

Yesterday, someone was reading my chat with someone who had made me yell, and they said, "You say things in your chat that are just lost on anyone not hearing you say them."  I was VERY disappointed.  Crushed actually.  I guess what this really means is that I either have a very angry way of typing that is only experienced IRL (in real life) (which is true) or I have an extremely emotional voice when I say things (which is also true).

"We aren't currently on that type of mission, so we aren't using that website right now," isn't nearly as "you are an idiot" in text as it was in speech.  Which went something like: Wtf are they asking about that for?  Will you check the calendar and see if there's a mission going on right now?  No, then wtf are they talking about?  What a fucking idiot.  I have better things to do with my time than deal with retards.  *commence having to chat with idiot with angry typing while still maintaining professionalism.

I'm sure its a good thing my rage doesn't come out in chat.  Although, I am sure that I often appear as stubborn and a pain in the ass.  Which kinda works out in my favor because that means that people don't like coming to me for stupid shit.

Important person: I never received an image from blah blah blah, can you send it to me?
Me: Sir/Ma'am, do you receive our reports?
IP: Yes.
Me: All our products are in our reports.
IP: OHHH, well, I didn't know that.
Me, muttering quietly: they never do.
Then, they magically pull up the report that contains the graphic they are asking for... Whodathunk?  I usually walk away feeling validated for calling someone an idiot in my head.

Buttttt.. sometimes, I'm the asshole.  That's not nearly as often, because I try to do my job and do it well, but... sometimes people with good intentions piss me off too.  For instance, the girl who came to tell us that someone was trying to find us in chat about 45 minutes after they'd posted it in our public chat room for everyone else to see that IIII wasn't responding to them (who cares that there are other people that work with me that have similar names to represent we all work in the same place)...  I had returned to my desk to see my chat window blinking that idiot warning sign at me and I had ignored it... and responded.. and was greeted back with 100% pure idiot.  When the girl that came to tell us, she got most of my "you're an idiot" directed at her semi-accidentally.  Sometimes the cup just runneth splash-ith over.

(a new great site for super old photos I found)


Saturday, June 18, 2011

Changing modesty..

no jk (google search)
Because Bahrain is an Arabic nation, there are different rules that we (as military and as Americans) have to follow.  Don't flip off people who cut you off (but waving your full hand at them in a violent motion is ok), if you are honking your car horn rudely you can get a ticket, dress appropriately (unless your a hooker), etc.

Because its summer.. in the desert... the fashion police are out.  Literally.  There are military and non-military out policing American clothing.  Your skirt is too short?  You have on a sleeveless shirt?  You have on shorts after dusk?  You are wearing a spaghetti strap (aka Teh Dad doesn't approve) top?  You are wrong.

Teh Bear and I have discussed this often.  Most of the clothes that I wore in GTMO I can no longer wear in Bahrain, despite the temps being about the same.  The weird part is, my modesty level changes too.

The time that Teh Dad disapproved of my top was a very rare day.  I didn't usually wear shirts like that, and given his reaction, you could guess why.  No one approved of dressing like that in my house.  You'd think I was raised conservative Southern Baptist with the way I dressed (I'm not Southern Baptist btw, just conservative).  I was even self-conscious wearing shorts in public because of how short they were (even the popular Sofee gym shorts).  Btw, that is such a horrible fashion fad, daisy-dukes or booty shorts, are VERY unappealing.  Keep it covered, keep some mystery, plus your junk (literally) ain't my business.

I used to go for most of the summer with wearing pants and finally capris when I broke down and accepted that fashion crisis.  The only time I would don shorts would be if I was going swimming.

When it was almost time to leave for GTMO I realized that I was in trouble.  I was going to the Caribbean and all I owned was pants/capris and shirts with sleeves (most of them long sleeve).  I had to go shopping like I was going to be living at the beach all year, which is way more difficult than it sounds.  I didn't want booty shorts (trashy) and I did buy more spaghetti strap tops, but also bought a few sheer/light tops to go over them if I was feeling particularly self-conscious that day.  I was finally able to find shorts that were of a modest length, and despite having to pay full price, it was worth not being self-conscious about my butt cheeks hanging out.
Teh GTMO Megan, see those short shorts and that tank top?  SO MUCH SKIN! ZOMY! (pic from Miss Reflective)
While I was in GTMO I even broke down and bought some skirts (soooo girly of me) and had Teh BFF send me more spaghetti strap tops.

Beachwear was perfectly acceptable in GTMO (since we were kinda at the beach, all the time).  I mean, I prob wouldn't have wore what I wore to party on F Block to mass, but I didn't have any issues going to the NEX.  I became more accepting of this way of dressing.. And I'm not so sure Teh Parents were ready for that when I took leave in April.  Granted, it was a little chillier in NC than it had been in GTMO so wearing more clothes was ok, but I was a lot less worried about "everything all hanging out" than I had been before I left.

Now, I'm in Bahrain.  Anywhere you go on base there are signs that display acceptable dress styles.  Conservative.  Good thing I had so much practice for 20+ years.  Its back to at least short sleeves and even my modest shorts are pushing the limits.  Yet, now that I've been here for a while, I (again) feel self-conscious when I put on a cute/potentially sexy skirt with a spaghetti strap top with an overshirt.  Even if I know I'm in regs, that doesn't mean that people aren't still staring.
Teh Bahrain Megan, and this isn't acceptable after dark. (pic by Will the Marine)
I've seen the way Arabic men stare at women boobs women, and its uncomfortable, so displaying them for everyone to see would just invite even more stares.

So my modesty level has changed again.  I'm back to that semi-conservative look.  I don't need the fashion police out after me...  until I go back home..  then I'll just pull out my spaghetti strap tops when I'm around Teh Dad to rile him up.  Isn't that the job of the oldest daughter?  :D

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Running out of things to blog about.. zomy.

So usually, I’m full of rants. Shit to babble on about, things that don’t matter to anyone.. and I’m ok with that, because this blog is about me, Gentle Reader, not you. I mean I could make it about you, but what fun would that be? Its not like you’re telling me your rants, thus, its automatically more fun to hear me ramble.

Recently, I’ve felt all writers’ block-y, and I’ve had to refer to my list of potential blog subjects to come up with blog topics. I mean, I don’t fault myself for having a list, because I would have definitely forgot some pretty good topics if I didn’t have my list, like the toothpaste blog that I’ve yet to write, but will get to… eventually. 

But sometimes, a blog about toothpaste doesn’t feel appropriate for the day, so I come up with something different and save particular topics for another day (sometimes the title of this blog is just so convenient, one day I’ll thank Teh Ginger for encouraging me to go with my first choice). 
So I mean, really, I can’t actually run out of things to blog about unless I actually run out of items on my list, which so far isn’t the case.. BUTTTTTT… because I was feeling bored with the topics that were remaining on my list, I did a google search for blog topics. Yeah, I’m creative like that. 

I pulled up a whole bunch of tabs to see what people were saying. Apparently, Chris Brogan (this last name always makes me think of the word Bromance btw) wanted me to write about 100 things that were mostly social media related.. and damn if I don’t already have a media degree and a waning lack of interest in the facebook/internet/advertising linked world. He bored me, so I went to my next tab. Something about how to be interesting. Really, I didn’t meet many of those standards, so feeling like I was about to feel like a blogging failure, I moved to the next tab, which was 50 suggestions for things to write blogs about.. like the person I most admire or why I love my hometown. Much closer to what I was looking for. Things that normal people without an interest in the real world can write about, check. Copy pasted to the blog subjects draft email that lives in Gmail land. SCORE! 

One of the other tabs had a link on how to be funny. Pretty sure I didn’t really meet too many of those qualifications either. And it was suggested on another tab that you start out every blog by talking about your Gentle Reader and why the topic was important to them. My topics aren’t important to you (probably) which is why you read my bullshit-ary anyways… and maybe you think I’m funny, but probably not. The example was something like, you will spend $25 on parking because you’re rushed but you could be saving money and here’s how. Apparently, this creates a link to the reader and gives them cause to keep reading. Meh. I draw you in with stupid stories and pictures of me being silly on my webcam and having a Hitler ‘stache. WIN. 
(Google Search)

So in this blog, this is what happened. I drew you in because you were worried that I was already done blogging (didn’t I just start blogging?) because I ran out of things to talk about. Then I tricked you by actually saying that I wasn’t really out of things, but that I was searching for MORE things to talk about, which in turn for you means, YAY Teh Megan will continue blogging! Lucky you, Gentle Reader. 

Tea time! (Google Search)
Also, not sure why I’ve started using Gentle Reader, but it makes me feel all old school English (UK English, not USA English). Like, I should be drinking Earl Grey tea (which I’ve never had btw) and having crumpets. I’d probably also refer to my peeps as Dear Teh BFF, Dear Teh Bear, Dear Miss Reflective, Dear Shoulda Been a Cowgirl. Hehehehe, that was fun. 

So, be on the lookout for less rants and more storytime.. YAY! Teh Megan stories! Those always end up long and full of tangents.. BWAHAHHAHA, my blog, my way, suckas Gentle Readers.


Tuesday, June 14, 2011

I'm at that point..

Cute little flight attendant Sailor Girl

So I joined the Navy a few years ago, with no expectation of the way my life would go..  Where I'd end up, for how long... To a ship for 2-3 years?  To DC for a few years?  An IA billet to the Sandbox?  I had no expectations.  Seriously.  Hell, I planned to spend 3 months in bootcamp, which turned into 2.5 (that few weeks was a blessing) and I didn't plan on spending over 6 months in training.  (Side note for those of you thinking of joining the military, I hope you LOVEEEE training, because its the military's number one priority.)

The first time I picked orders, there were 2 location options for the job I wanted.  Miami, FL or GTMO.  My logic in choosing GTMO?  I didn't want to be in the US, I'd joined the Navy to do something different, and America wasn't different.  So GTMO it was, for 1 year.  It was PCS orders, meaning you are actually stationed there instead of being temporarily assigned (like most of the troops there).  What this means in layman's terms is you're stationed there so you don't get all the extra awesome pays of being temporarily assigned there.  Oh yeah, Navy screw-over-#-who's-counting?  1 year isn't a long time compared to being stationed somewhere for 2+ years.  At least, in my opinion.  But, when you know that something else is looming over the horizon so soon, because your time is limited, it definitely felt like it was a very long year sometimes.

Fast foward from Sept 09 to Apr 10.  Teh Megan got "needs of the Navy" orders..  meaning, I was the Navy's bitch, which isn't really different than normal, it just meant that I didn't really get to pick my choice of places that I wanted to be stationed at next.  The Navy needed me at COMUSNAVCENT, or Bahrain.  I took advantage of those 12 weeks of A school training and built a country brief for my family and friends so they would understand what was happening and where I was going..  to the Middle East, but not THE Middle East that was always in the news... until this year.

Ok, so I haven't had that much rum,
but the sign still holds true.
This was another set of PCS orders, and there are people stationed here IA (Teh Lumberjack) who, again, make more money than me.  Another Navy screw-over-#-who's-counting? event, its good that I don't keep an actual running record of these.  Actually, its not really a screw over.  Being in Bahrain (while it is a desert island, like GTMO was), hasn't been so bad.  I actually have a whole apartment to myself instead of 10x10 tin shed where I shared a bathroom with someone else, which really isn't bad until its 2am and they come home barfing from partying too hard.  I can go to dinner at a real restaurant, even though I still can't understand the waitstaff and they take just as long as the TCNs in GTMO did.. its civilization and there's people that I've never seen in my entire life at the same location...  its an ambiguous feeling, and soo very delightful, until I start missing Filipino bar at the Bayview...

Recently, I've started feeling like time has flown by, yet there is so much more time to go, but not really.  I hit this same "plateau" when I was in GTMO.  I was ready to get off the island, seeing the same faces over and over was making me feel like Groundhog's Day (the movie, not the national day in Feb, which only is important because it means my bday is one day away) was actually happening, which Teh DM (divemaster, who acquires his name because his gills) had said was going to happen.  He hit his 6 year mark in GTMO while I was there.. and that's a long damn time.  

For me, its almost like a depression.  Knowing that you've passed the halfway mark but you aren't done yet..  Its like when I'm doing situps and I tell myself, just 15 more.. after already doing 85..  Its the mentality of just getting through it.  So I set high points for myself.  Teh Bear's visit at month 9.  Ramadan month 10.  Month 11 will mark 1 year in Bahrain (I arrived about a month early to save on leave).  Month 12 will mark the closing of this deployment  (and yes I just called this a deployment).

Its very complicated knowing that 8 months have passed, and there are only 4/5ish more to go.  I feel like time has flown, and at the same time is moving very slowly.  Its the plight of 1 year orders to anywhere.  At the same time, it makes me very nervous for 2 year orders to VX-1 (where I'm headed next), because 2 years will be a VERY long time for me.  

I'm used to moving about every year.  I've been doing it since 2004 actually.. and almost 10 years later, I don't really have a lot of stuff to account for because of my life style (which kinda makes me sound gay, but its whatev).  I've joked said before that I'm a nomad.  And now that I look back for even longer, its true.  I've bitched about living out of suitcases several times.  And yet, I'm ready to do it again to start the next adventure... I think.

Random Tidbit.  
Today, I finished my Army Wives marathon that I've had going on since April.  On my days off, I've been catching up by watching seasons 1-4.  While there are parts of the show that are blatantly wrong (which I know now, because I'm in the military), it was entertaining and got me away from WoW, which was becoming more and more boring by the minute.  I was really only getting online to socialize with my "warcraft homies", because the game play (especially on this speed challenged internet) wasn't really entertaining anymore.

On the other hand, it makes me super depressed to watch the show, and I'm kinda glad I'm caught up so I can watch something else that doesn't make me as depressed.  It makes me sad to think of people that I'm not as close to now as I was because of my military life.  And there isn't really anything significant that goes on in my daily life (thus the plight of 12 hour days and purposely doing absolutely nothing on your days off), so I don't talk to people at home as much as I used to, because I don't really have anything great to talk about.  "Went to work for 12 hours, came home and had video time with Teh Bear, went to bed, woke up early, went back to work for 12 hours, wash, rinse, repeat."

So I'm kinda blaming watching too much Army Wives on the depressingness that is this post about being at the plateau of my deployment, waiting on time to pass, getting through the days to mark them off, and being glad that so many days are behind me and it doesn't seem like it took them that long to pass.


Sunday, June 12, 2011

Shameless plug for how awesome my new computer is..

So when I talk on Skype, the Dell Integrated Camera menu pops up now (which I told it not to do, otherwise I would talk to Teh Bear all the time in "googly eyes"... and he can't take me seriously when I have googly eyes up)..  It definitely made for a serious case of the giggles.

WTF am I talking about?  I come in pictures.. hehehe I'm so punny.
Golem/Googly eyes!  Most definitely my fav.

When I think about Teh Bear?

In my natural state...

Trying hard to be something I'm not...

Most ridiculous face I could make with this effect.

Why the long face?  You actually watch your face grow when using this one.

Another natural state...  

Prob looks like a baddie from WoW.

Looks like a 2 headed ogre from WoW, sans the board with the nail through it, but with a smile!

We are Siamese if you please.  We are Siamese if you don't please.

You're actually not supposed to hold your breath under water when you're diving....  But lets pretend I didn't know that.

Elementary, my dear, Watson.

Pretty sure I had this hair style and color not too many years ago.

Hitler 'stache..

Creeper 'stache

It's my tortured artist look, and I'm twisting my beard pieces!

crazy face! 
I was slimed!  Thats my most horrified face.

Tinnnnnnyyy bubbles, on my computer screen, MAKES ME HAPPY, MAKES ME SCREAM!

This is what happens when Tinker Bell flies in front of you while you're talking on Skype.

hEHEHEHEHEHEHEH.. this was so much fun.. I also have screenshots from Teh Bear discovering his addons...  But I'm saving that blog for a day when I need to blackmail him more.  ;)  But he's been warned.  :D


Friday, June 10, 2011

Sleeping Activities... that mean I prob should never get real sea duty.

And not because I'm not a real sailor.. But because my sleeping body has taken on a mind of its own.

Exhibit 1:
I sleep with earplugs in every night.  1.  I'm a light sleeper.  2.  I'm a light sleeper that lives beside a very popular road.  3.  I'm a light sleeper that lives beside a very popular road that loud motorcycles and vehicles like to race down and/or rev their engines to take off from the stop lights no matter the time of day or day of the week.  4.  Prayer call is after 8pm and as early as 4am.  Did I mention I'm a light sleeper?  Let me rephrase that.  I'm a SENSITIVE sleeper, because I also don't handle lights well either.  But back to the story.

Sleep made possible by:
Mack's Silicone Earplugs
One night, I woke myself up because I could hear vehicles going down the street due to the fact that I had taken out one of my earplugs.  How do I know I had taken it out?  I was still holding it.  I was purposely holding it so it didn't get lost in my bed, which I actually recall thinking in my sleeping/aware state.  Sleeping Megan didn't think that putting the earplug back in was a good idea, Aware Megan thought it was a good idea.  Aware Megan sent the command to headquarters.  HQ said, no go, because Sleeping Megan had staged a coup.  In a haze, I finally semi-came to, took out the other earplug, then put both of them back in.  Strange?  Yeah, I agree.

Next thing I remembered was waking up and remembering waking up in the middle of the night because of an earplug malfunction.

Exhibit 2:
I like going to bed and waking up in the morning, not having woken up at all in the middle of the night for anything.  I used to pride myself on this.  Now, I'm questioning if this ever actually happened at all.

Well I don't have a fever..  (source)
Another night, I was asleep, but was completely aware that I was kicking the covers off of my body.  I would cover myself back up, and then I'd kick the covers back off.  Sleeping Megan was apparently getting out of the bed for something.  Aware Megan send a message to HQ that said, hey, busy right now, that operation isn't valid.  HQ never even bothered to send a reply, because I kicked the covers off again.  Aware Megan was very annoyed at this point and thought, we'll fine I'll just get up and pee, even though I don't need to go.  I came-to at some point while I was peeing.  I don't even recall opening the door to get in the bathroom.  Awake Megan was annoyed at Sleeping Megan.  Awake Megan washed her hands and stumbled back to bed, shutting the bathroom door and hitting her shins on the bed frame.  Sleeping Megan was satisfied at having won the sleep-action war and didn't protest for the rest of the night.

Currently, these are my main two pieces of evidence.  I also have a history of talking in my sleep, but those might have expired because they were from when I was kid.  Apparently, I respond when questioned while I'm sleeping.

When I was sharing these exhibits at work, someone mentioned that sleepwalkers aren't allowed to go to ships.  I was miffed, but only slightly.  Never get to go to ship?  Bummer (NOT!).  I was more upset by the fact that someone had insinuated I was a sleep walker.

How do you go from normal sleeper to sleep walker?  And why does my body like to become aware in the middle of the process?  Why can't I be like a normal sleep walker and do shit and not remember it at all?  This seems like a much simpler option than having your semi-awareness fight your full-sleepingness... while you're trying to sleep.

   I just want to be normal...  bwaahahahahaha.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Allowed excitement.. gushy warning!

Teh Bear is COMING TO BAHRAIN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
I'm impressed with what I can do in paint sometimes.

The tickets have been purchased, Americans are still currently being allowed in the country (which was something we've been monitoring due to political climate issues), dates are set... AND WE ARE UNDER 30 DAYS!

It took a VERY long time to finally get to this point.  As in, when I left in September, it was like, well, see you in a year, deuces.  Maybe a lot sadder than that and we actually already knew that his vacation time was in July (standby for the reasons on why that was a bad decision), but not the point..

It has been over 250 days since I've been in Bahrain.  I mean, its not in the 300s yet, but damn if we aren't getting close!  Let me break down 250 days for you, in case you're bad at math like me..  Got here Sept 23rd, its now almost mid-June, so for estimation sake, we'll say June is 1/2 a month and the Sept time was 1/2 a month, so that equals 1 month.  Add the rest of the full months, which is Nov-May (7).  7+1=8.  By the time July gets here, add one more month... 8+1=9.

Side Note: I know I have spring fever when anytime anyone mentions 9 months, I immediately think, that is a human gestation period, exact inner monologue quote.

There was a lot of debate about vacation.  Mostly was the cost.  Lesson of the year: vacationing during the summer is EXPENSIVE.  Vacationing during the summer after bin Laden was killed, which caused gas prices to rise for some reason = even MORE expensive.  Good time to vacation?  Late Jan-April.  Hello birthday trips!  (that may or may not be a hint hint for Teh Bear.........)

Originally, I thought that this would be a perfect opportunity to finally get to the destination of my dreams..  ITALY!!!!  We looked at several package options, but it was very complicated to deal with one person needing airfare and one person not (if I hadn't flushed R&R down the toilet by taking leave in Feb/Mar if I were to use R&R).  It was also expensive, and we made the mistake of comparing the July price with prices at different times of the year.  It was quickly decided that we weren't ever taking vacation in the summer evar again.  The estimates were around $4k, then add food/touristy things/extra incurred vacation costs, and I had a feeling we were looking at more money than I was wanting to spend.. and by feeling I mean, deep depression over the fact that I was looking at the trip of my dreams and telling myself no because of the price tag.  Siiiiigh, one day, Italy, one day we will be together.

Then we looked at other places that could be potentially cheaper.  My 2nd choice?  Scotland.  Mmmmm, love those accents.  Again, July prices weren't giving me any warm and fuzzies, and any flight through the UK is ridiculously expensive, not really sure why the Heathrow airport has to rape people with their extra taxes, but I wasn't a fan.  And the same issues for price were coming up with all vacation costs not being nice to ze pocketbook.

At the time, my R&R was still available, and there was consideration of coming back stateside, but that would still include hotel costs if I was in FL for any period of time, along with food and etc costs (my ridiculous love of shopping in America?).  And that would have also included a flight to NC, and coordinating my flight back to Bahrain, because R&R flights are usually arrive and depart from the same place (yay for military inflexibility!).  And lastly, it would mean split time.

So then the thought occurred to Teh Bear, why not just fly him to Bahrain?  Well, thats so damn clever!  Why didn't I think of that?  Well, because its the Middle East in the middle of the freakin summer (which is why we shut down that idea of going to Egypt and doing a Nile River tour, and add political hot mess to that list).  And because Bahrain isn't a vacation for me, its the place I live (and it sure as hell ain't a vacation).  But it is 2 weeks of no work, and I mean, people take 2 weeks off of work and sit at home, right?  Right.  Good.

So now the cost is just the plane ticket (thank you Osama for getting killed and making the prices of tickets rise) and groceries and whatever Teh Bear decided to buy while he's here.  For a while, the biggest concern was the political situation in the Middle East, but particularly Bahrain.  The Saudi's rolled over the Causeway (very long bridge between Saudi Arabia and Bahrain) in March and they've been parked roadside the hot protest areas since they arrived.  Its a fun time to go to the mall and see the APCs and tanks just chillin beside the road, blocking the exit to what used to be the Pearl Roundabout (/tear).  We were quite worried about him actually being able to enter the country, cause to waste spend $2k on a plane ticket to arrive at your destination almost 20 hours later and be told, sorry you can't stay....  My reaction to that is probably something I shouldn't think about.

Its like Where's Bahrain instead of Waldo...
We projected that in May we would make the final decision on vacation.  May has passed.  Bahrain is currently letting Americans enter (and the base has even lifted the dependent ban).  Italy is still expensive.  My R&R is no longer available because I took leave with Teh Sister visited in Feb/Mar and taking leave makes you ineligible for R&R benefits (dumb rule, but I don't make them, and I'm a peon who's opinion doesn't matter).  I've also been talking about Teh Bear visiting to my Bahrain Peeps (since the idea of him visiting first was discussed) and they are interested in meeting him or in the case of a few, wanting to meet the person who puts up with me, harhar.

I made myself wait until the tickets were purchased and we had less than month to count down till I got excited (because honestly, I've been counting down since I knew Teh Bear's vacation dates almost a year ago, but I've been keeping it on the DL).  I know how crushed I get, and how easily it happens, so I knew that this painful delayed gratification would be worth it in the end, just in case something didn't work out... or in the case that everything worked out, I could be ridiculously excited and giddy and my "tail" could wag uncontrollably (don't judge me, I get really excited sometimes, people are lucky I don't pee a little on the floor).

Tangent:  Hello NAVCENT.
One of the only pics of a building on base that I've ever found on the internet.  Not even searching NSA Bahrain yielded good results to show my family where I work..  But this is it.  Being in the Navy has given me a deeper appreciation of windows...

YYYYAAAYYYYYY TEH BEAR IS COMING !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
was that amount of !'s excessive?  good.  I'm that excited.