Showing posts from May, 2009

New Direction

My new RA doctor heeded my request and has switched my medications around so that I am taking far less prednisone and much more Imuran. We will see how the liver likes that and how the RA stands it over the next three months and adjust again, as needed.

This pleases me as I am the heaviest I've ever been after a year of predominantly using prednisone to help with the RA flares I was having almost constantly. Unfortunately, one of prednisone's biggest negatives is that it stimulates appetite. I was finding myself eating way more than I wanted or needed and would litterally catch myself at the refridgerator with the door open and not remember how I got there-- my hunger cravings having caused me to ease there and start looking for something to munch.

Each time I've been on prednisone for an extended time I have gained around 15-25 lbs. Back when I was grossly underweight at 115-120 lbs, this was a good thing. Getting me to the 155-165 lbs my doctors wanted me at made sense too…

Bundle of Joy

We have ourselves a new companion! We pulled the trigger on an adoption from the Animal Rescue League via the Pet Corral on the west side. We turned in the paperwork on Sunday midday, were called with the approval that evening, and then was called by the owner of the Pet Corral that we could pick him up on Monday (even though it was a national holiday). We got him Monday, and bought a ton of cat-related products to go with him (at 20% discount).This male, neutered tabby is about 10 lbs. He is around 2 years old, seems mostly well-behaved so far, and is an absolute attention whore. He loves sitting on a lap or sitting near to a person so he can be scratched and petted. He loves having his belly rubbed.He seems so petite and delicate after my 22 lbs cat, Calypso. He has a remarkably similar face, though, which M even commented on. Her words were, “He’s like a gray Caly.” We’re calling him “Romy” (roam-ee) for now. It is the name he seems to respond to the most of all our choices. However…

Going to Get a Rep

I had an appointment today with a dermatologist to see about some skin issues I’ve been experiencing. Nothing too big or bad, just want each checked to make sure it is, as I suspect, nothing and maybe have a few troublesome moles removed from places that get irritated easily (like my neck).My appointment was at 2:30 pm, so I got there about 2:20 pm. Good thing, too, because the location was inside a store, which was not readily apparent. I walked the entire length of the little outdoor mall twice before realizing where it was. They need much better external signage.I filled out the paperwork, which took about 3 minutes, and then waited about 15 before being called back. So, let’s call it 2:50 pm before I am called into the back room. I am told to strip to my underwear and “the doctor will be with you shortly.”At 3:30 pm, cold and irritated, I put my clothes back on and left. I stopped at the receptionist and in a not-impolite voice said, “Please tell the doctor I’ve left.”She said, “H…

Cameron's Wedding

M and I watched the House episode from this week last night. During the wedding shots of Cameron and Chase, I whispered in M's ear, "You looked better than her" about our wedding. I was NOT trying to score bonus Husband points-- it was an honest statement.

I am frequently surprised at how actresses look in the wedding dresses picked for them for TV and movies. While Cameron looked nice, I didn't think the particular ensemble was right for her body or coloring. Whereas my wife picked a dress that was right for her and looked beautiful in it with her tiara and flowers.

Just goes to show that you can have millions of dollars and personal shoppers, but still get the wrong dress. Or you can be a frugal woman on a budget and get the right dress.

Baby Steps, Cat's Paws

M and I went down to the Pet Corral last evening and looked at the 7 cats they had. One was in an open cage at the front of the store, was cute, but not overly responsive to either of us. In the back of the store there were three in the upper windowed viewing room and three in the lower.

In the upper area was a black with some white highlights (reminded me a lot of my buddy Chris' cat Sam) short-hair, another was a sleek grey with black stripes short-hair with an evil look (no, seriously-- looked like it just wanted to rip our throats out), and the third was a large grey and white short-hair cat.

In the lower area was another grey and black striped short-hair, a white and gray/black short-hair, and a medium-hair black/orange mixed cat.

As we cooed and watched them, the black/orange was definitely interested in me. It came whenever I put my hand by the glass, rolled over on its back, and was generally very interested. The black cat had some interest in M, but not enough to really get …

Miss California

Any beauty queen's job is to be a public figure, a leader, and a representative of whatever or whomever elected her. In the case of a state, the woman is supposed to represent the many varied people and lifestyles and to encourage people to go to that state. As many in other types of public positions of leadership and celebrity can attest, these positions require tact and the ability to comport oneself with decorum and sensitivity at all times, even when the cameras are "off." In this, Miss California Carrie Prejean failed miserably, both in the Miss America pageant and since. If she doesn't have the forethought and comportment to answer questions during the pageant in a politically appropriate and sensitive way, what must she say when she thinks no one is listening?

California has enough gay people and those believing in gay marriage to pass a bill in the state to approve homosexual marriages. Many have argued that the only way the opponents of gay marriage could ge…

Star Trek

I managed to convince M to leave work and go see the new Star Trek movie last night.

Once there, we asked for Julie, the manager I spoke with about the poor quality of our last few experiences at this theatre. She was willing to give us the free tickets to get in, so we have resolved that issue. We also noted that the food lines were running more smoothly. Ironically, they had some projection issues to start with, but had them resolved before the previews.

Star Trek is a great science fiction action adventure movie. It has a solid story, good acting, very good effects, and dependable direction. I think that most fans of any of the before-mentioned genre subtopics would enjoy the movie, would be strongly entertained, and would leave the theater happy/satisfied.

Trekkers (aka Trekkies) may see it otherwise, however.

Time travel is one of my least liked plot devices because it is rarely done well and rarely answers the questions it raises. It fills the screen with plot holes the size of semi…

Fire, Fire Burning Bright

It is not looking good for my Uncle's house (formerly my grandmother's house) in Santa Barbara. Got word from my mother that the fire was burning on the two streets on which the house was built.

This is sad for a number of reasons:
It is the only home my Uncle has known, and he has a large family and it will take time to rebuild.That house was one of the original built on that hill over 60 years ago, before it became a posh place to live. It had a view of pretty much all of Santa Barbara, the main city beach, the channel, and on a clear day, the channel islands. We actually once saw a pod of whales swimming down the channel from the deck of the house (they were tiny from that distance, but we still could make them out).
I have many fond memories of summer and Christmas visits to that house.I've always like Santa Barbara.The Mission and Botanical Gardens are both just down the hill from that house; they may be threatened or destroyed.Luckily, my Uncle and his family evacuated …

Oh, Canada!

I'm feeling a little like I'm being punished for moving to Canada. There are a few things that make little sense that are affecting my ability to get things done here. One of which involves financial situations.

M doesn't like dealing with the financial side of things. She wants me to take that over because she knows I care about it and will watch it. However, because I haven't been in Canada for very long, I'm a bit stymied in certain things.

For example, in order to earn more interest in a savings account, and because I have been a long-time member of ING Direct, we decided to open an ING Direct Canada account. Although it is the same company, the American and Canadian side do not have ANYTHING to do with each other in the slightest-- to the point of not even checking my credit history and account status on one side to prove I'm an okay risk on the other side. Our joint account is now on hold because I have no credit history at all (which, frankly should be a g…

Life Ends

Life, one of the best shows on TV you weren't watching, was canceled yesterday by NBC. Yet another of that network's best, most inventive shows is axed so they can put another hour of mediocre "reality" type programming on.

I've checked a few entertainment sites that have commented on the loss of Life. On each, there are dozens to hundreds of positive comments about that show. What should worry NBC is the fact that the vast majority of people say that Life was the last show on that network they watched; by canceling it, NBC has done the opposite of what they wanted to do -- they have lost viewers.

The other thing I note, and have been noting on a lot of entertainment sites, is the fact that there is a very strong anti-reality programming backlash brewing. People are getting fed up with the Survivors, Dancers, Idols, and the rest and are seeking good, quality dramas wherever they can find them. Yet another reason why the off-networks like TNT, Spike, and FX are gain…

Flagrant Fouls

Moreso than usual, this year's NBA playoffs has shown some woefully inept refereeing. While the NBA is somewhat known for bad officiating, these playoffs have really sunk to new depths.

The most egregious of which is the handling of Rajon Rondo's foul against Brad Miller in game 5 with 2 seconds left in the game. Here is a copy of the rules concerning a Flagrant Foul in the NBA:
Section IV--Flagrant Foul
a. If contact committed against a player, with or without the ball, is interpreted to be unnecessary, a flagrant foul--penalty (1) will be assessed. A personal foul is charged to the offender and a team foul is charged to the team.

(1) Two free throws shall be attempted and the ball awarded to the offended team on either side of the court at the free throw line extended.
(2) If the offended player is injured and unable to attempt his free throws, the opposing coach will select any player from the bench to attempt the free throws.
(3) This substitute may not be replaced until…

It All Makes Sense Now

I rarely renew my CostCo card on time. Prior to having my wife in my life, I went about once a year, sometimes twice, and filled up on goods and then didn't go again for months at a time. I often complained to my mother and friends that it seemed like I was constantly renewing my CostCo card and only getting a short amount of use out of it before needing to renew again.

Well, today I got an email about a class-action lawsuit filled against CostCo for all those who renewed their membership between March 1, 2001 and March 31, 2009. It seems that CostCo always made your renewal retroactive to the original renewal date, regardless of when you renewed it. So, for example, let's say your renewal date was April 1. You went in and paid for a twelve month renewal on June 1 (two months after your renewal date). Although you paid for 12 months, your next renewal would come up on April 1 again... 10 months later.

The person who brought the class-action sued because she felt she had paid for…