Tuesday, October 28, 2008
I've been on a Belinda Carlisle kick lately. This song was one of three new songs on a European best-of collection that was released 10 years ago. I'm not a religious person but I like the message this song delivers.
Bye bye, Cloris!
Cloris danced her last dance last night. Actually her last two dances...she was part of the group dance train wreck. Kudos to her, she's 82 years old and she got out there and did moves that I wouldn't even attempt and I'm half her age. I think she served as an inspiration to seniors, proving that you can be lively and you can kick up your heels and dance. Last night, Carianne had harsh words for her but she meant it to inspire Cloris to try harder.
Susan and Tony were the other couple in the bottom two. Here's hoping Susan does better next week. I don't think she'll make the top 3 but I enjoy watching her dance.
Monday, October 27, 2008
Welcome to week 6 of my Dancing With The Stars recap. Lots of medical issues this week and a guest judge.
1st shake-up of the week is the announcement of guest judge Michael Flatley (Lord of the Dance). Seems odd to have a guest judge at this point, scoring the dancers when he hasn’t been a part of their competition up ‘til now. Then again, fresh eyes may be good.
Maurice and Cheryl – Viennese Waltz: He looks like he’s flat-footing it and some of his motions seem forced. She’s lovely as always. Boring. Judges were polite but no glowing reviews. 21/30
Lance and Lacey – Jive: YAY…lots of energy. Quick footwork, smiles, fun. Oh this is too cute. Nicely done. Will the judges like it? Yes, they liked it! 27/30
Susan and Tony – Mambo: Hmm…not a great start, her timing seems off. Oh good…it improved. She’s not bad, but she’s not great. I want her to be better. Carrianne loved it, Bruno not so much, Michael was very complementary. Susan can’t talk without shaking her head. 23/30
Brooke and Derek – Rumba: So elegant and pretty. She’s got amazing posture and flexibility. Even with a foot injury she did a remarkable job. At the end it looks like she just kind of stopped though. Michael LOVED it, Carrianne was not thrilled, but said it was a result of her injury. Bruno said the same thing. 26/30
Cloris and Corky – Cha-Cha-Cha: Oh dear, I’m scared. Okay, she really didn’t get to the steps until about 40 seconds in. Meh…she’s trying I guess but she just doesn’t have the energy to pull this dance off. The crowd loves it though and bless her for trying. She cracks me up. The judges were not thrilled. Carianne told her that she finds it sad that a great dancer like Toni Braxton had to go home and they’re stuck with her dancing. She was rough on her but it’s true, unfortunately. 15/30
Cody and Julianne – Samba: Julianne actually has endometriosis and after tonight’s show she’s having her appendix removed. So far though, she seems to be feeling fine. They’re doing a nice job. A couple of his steps look a bit off but overall it was great. Carianne loved it, Bruno didn’t like it, Michael was Sweden. 23/30
Warren and Kym – Rumba: Warren moves nicely for a larger statured guy. He impresses me. He seems a bit flat-footed to me tonight. But, together they are an adorable couple. Apparenly there were a couple mistakes that the judges caught. 25/30
The group dance is a hip-hop number. I’ve never been thrilled with the group dance. Cloris walks in to rehearsal with a HUGE boom box on her shoulder. The rehearsal clips were cute, let’s see how this unfolds. At least it’s unscored. Lance and Lacey are excellent, Warren is awesome and cracks me up. Brooke and Derek are doing nicely, even Susan is holding her own. Good for her! Cloris is up on stage with Corky, id of out of the way. Probably a good thing. Okay, it’s over. It could have been worse. That was cute.
Early prediction, I think it’s going to be Cloris going home this week, if not her, it’ll be Maurice. Results tomorrow.
Sunday, October 26, 2008
So it's been a while since I've had the occasion to have a sleepover with someone. I've gone home with guys but usually that involves some hot and heavy play, then I towel off, get dressed, and go home. It's been a good 4 years since I've spent the night in bed with someone. That dry spell ended Friday night.
Matthew suggested that we cook dinner together on Friday and then I would spend the night. I got to his place at about 5:30 and we got busy in the kitchen. Cooking. By 7:30 we had a delicious meal on the table. The evening progressed with us both looking at pictures. In this modern age it's easy to just throw your laptop in your bag and have all of your photography in one spot. I showed him trip pictures and pointed out the friends that he will eventually meet. He did the same. We had some drinks, listened to music and eventually it was time for bed.
No details about what went on, you can figure that out for yourself. One thing I will confess is that I was never instructed on the protocol of sharing a bed with someone. I love to snuggle, Matthew enjoys it too, so that was nice. To this day, what still alludes me is where to put my arms. One was draped over Matthew, the other was either over my head (where it fell asleep) beside me (which hurt after a while) or under either my pillow or under Matthew (again, causing it to fall asleep. At one point, I repositioned my arm and proceeded to elbow Matthew in the back of the head. He said "OW!" I said "I'm sorry." And then I realized that there were just too many arms.
During the post (no details provided) chat, Matthew said "so would you say we're dating now?" I replied "yup, I think we are." He said "okay, good."
Eventually, I'll figure out where the arms go.
Thursday, October 23, 2008
Tuesday was my split workday, I have days where I go from one facility to another. I stopped at home to use the bathroom because nothing beats the comfort of your own bathroom. Upon arriving home, I found my mom in bed, which is unusual. She said that she had a rash in her mouth and had some swelling which prevented her from wearing her dentures. This prevented her from eating. She blended her breakfast and planned on blending her lunch but was feeling pretty miserable. I found some things in the house that could be blended for a "meal." Lunch was going to be cottage cheese, milk and peanut butter. I went to Target and got her some Glucerna (basically a nutritionally balanced liquid meal, without sugar) and I brought home some cream soups that would puree nicely.
By Wednesday, she was feeling better. I got a call during the day and she sounded happy. "Guess what? I have teeth again!" is what she said. As I had dinner plans out that evening, she was excited to have a liver sausage sandwich.
As for me, I went over to Matthew's house to help him prepare for some home repair scheduled to take place in his apartment. Turns out that an outer wall leaked and caused the insulation between the wall to become saturated which has caused a wall to buckle. I got there, we got busy moving furniture and got a couple of doorways encased in plastic. Pizza arrived and luckily we were about finished so we ate and watched TV. We discussed our menu for Friday's dinner, and then he invited me to spend the night on Friday. :) We then said goodnight and I came home.
In other news, $150,000 for Palin's wardrobe, makeup and hair, huh? Seriously? Did you see that red leather jacket she wore the other day?
It came as a surprise to a lot of people, including me, that Cloris Leachman survived another week of DWTS. That left a field of performers, none of whom had never been in the bottom two. When all was said and done, Toni Braxton was sent home. This came as a bit of a shock as I think the judges saw great potential in her, unfortunately she didn't have the support from the voting public.
Next week, the group dance. The Stars not only learn an individual dance, they all will participate in a group dance which, if I'm not mistaken, is some sort of hip-hop number.
Monday, October 20, 2008
I met someone.
Flash back to August 31. Dan was whooshed back to Chicago from New Orleans, a couple days earlier than planned, thanks to Hurricane Gustav. Home and not fully partied-out, I met him, Luis and Polo at Jackhammer. I had been on a date. I went home, changed and went to the bar.
Typical night out with the guys. It was a holiday weekend so things were busy for a Sunday. They played pool, I watched and enjoyed a refreshing beverage. I made eye contact with a guy who looked a bit grumpy but I smiled and so did he. We exchanged a couple smiles, then the boys and I went downstairs. Somehow we ended up shirtless. A few minutes later I realized that the guy I had been smiling at was downstairs seated in the corner not too far from us. We exchanged smiles again. He seemed amused by Luis and Polo's antics (think 3 Stooges minus 1). I commented and he asked "How long have they been a couple?" Dan laughed, I explained that Luis belonged to Dan, that Polo was Luis' best friend, and I was Dan's best friend. We introduced ourselves, chatted a bit, then he left.
Three weeks later, I was at Jackhammer on a Saturday. I kept exchanging glances with a guy who I knew looked familiar but couldn't place the face. He came over, we chatted, he introduced himself as Matthew and said that we met downstairs with my drunk friends (wait 'til he realizes that's just how they act, even sober!). More important, he remembered my name. We chatted and laughed about the night we met and then he boldly asked "if I give you my number, would you call me so we can go for a drink or even dinner sometime?" I said "absolutely!" We exchanged numbers and then both went our ways.
We talked a couple days later, then made dinner plans for the following Friday. It went great.
We've chatted many times since, either by text or phone. We had dinner last Saturday. I made dessert and took it over to his place last night and we watched Desperate Housewives. We've got plans to cook dinner together on Friday.
I'm nervous. I'm excited. I'm happy.
Tonight's round of Dancing introduce 4 entirely new dances to the competition. The West Coast Swing, The Hustle, The Salsa, and The Jitterbug. I LOVE the Jitterbug!! So here we go...
Lance and Lacey – West Coast Swing: Nice…lots of body language and cool steps. This is Lacey’s best dance so she’s exuding lots of confidence. Uh oh…Lance fell. But he got up and kept going. Nicely done!!! The judges showed disappointment in the fact that Lacey seemed to dance around Lance and didn’t teach him enough steps. They see potential in him but want her to push him more. 21/30.
Toni and Alec – West Coast Swing: So far, Toni looks like she’s being careful…okay she’s being swung around now. Nicely done I guess…not crazy about the dance. Judges are picking it apart. 22/30.
Susan and Tony – Hustle: Okay, she’s dancing with 2 broken toes. She looks pretty. Nice dance, really looks like she’s being careful. Nice spins, little kicks. Lifts are allowed so they’ve done two of them. Len pointed out that Tony is treating Susan like she’s a delicate flower. 22/30
Warren and Kym – Hustle: Warren can really move for a big guy! In some regards though, his moves look clumsy because he’s a larger statured guy. He’s having fun though. This is a hustle!! Judges better love that one! Oh…Bruno with his euphemisms. 25/30
Cloris and Corky – Salsa: OH! MY! GOD! They were great! She really did a nice job. It was fun and she had some good moves. Good for her! Carianne said nothing about her dancing skills. Len enjoyed it! Cloris said that Corky told her to act like a “skanky ho.” 21/30
Maurice and Cheryl – Salsa: Very powerful, Cheryl looks great considering this isn’t her forte. Maurice is holding his own, too. The judges are very pleased with the performance. 27/30
Brooke and Derek – Jitterbug: CUTE! Lots of flips and shimmies and high leg kicks. Derek has never done this dance before so they were both learning it. Nicely done. Bruno called it glorious. Carianne can’t find any reason to nitpick. Len loved it. 29/30 (Len gave them a 9)
Cody and Julianne – Jitterbug: Nice…he looks a touch awkward, but is doing nicely. They did great. Like her brother, Julianne has never done a jitterbug so this was new for both of them. Carianne pointed out that his limbs are meant for this dance and she’s right, he’s tall and slim so his arms and legs move well for this dance. 28/30. (10 from Carianne, 9’s from Len and Bruno)
Wow…interesting week. The ones I thought would be great this week faltered a bit. I hate to think of someone like Lance or Susan going home but scores alone would mean they were the in trouble. Last week Cloris had the lowest scores and was in the bottom, tonight her scores from the judges had her at the bottom with Lance. Tomorrow we find out. Stay tuned…
My friends know that I have a roommate, my 77 year old mother. Long story short, she lives with me so that I can just keep a watchful eye on her and make sure she takes her meds, eating and taking care of herself. She's self-sufficient for the most part, she still drives and cooks and goes for walks in the neighborhood, but she's slow and hard of hearing and has health issues. She's diabetic, non-insulin dependent. She's got high blood pressure, and has high cholesterol.
Dan can attest to my mom's spirit. He's met her and will agree that she's a feisty old woman.
Last week she visited her doctor to discuss some bloodwork she had done. The doctor is concerned about her blood sugar, and was surprised to see that her cholesterol was high. Turns out she stopped taking her medication because she figured she had changed her diet to control it, and it was too expensive. She's back on it, she's in a lower-cost medication so now we'll see how she does on it.
One thing that it going to take some time to manage is her blood sugar. Apparently it's been higher but the doctor doesn't want to change her meds until he sees how she does with her cholesterol. In the mean time, the doctor didn't believe she was checking her sugar properly so he has arranged for a nurse to visit. The first visit was today and she'll be here twice a week to check on mom and follow along with her blood sugar levels.
In other mom news, I bought her a winter coat over the weekend. Her previous coat was huge on her. I didn't realize it until late last winter when she came in from outdoors and was wearing it. She has been saving for a new coat, I figured I would beat her to the punch. She was thrilled and she loves the new coat.
I guess every once in a while, it's okay to be the parent.
Sunday, October 19, 2008
Monday, October 13, 2008
During a previous Indiana visit, Vahona and I went to a county fair. Give us a venue where we can eat food on a stick, people watch and hopefully see a midget or two and we're giddy. We played some games and both won prizes. I chose a small, stuffed Burt. Burt found a home in the back window of my car. When asked why I had a Burt doll in my window, I would tell people that I'm a Burt without an Ernie. It got some laughs. It was a metaphor for my life.
As luck would have it, a year later, I had an encounter with an "Ernie." I was an interesting ride and I learned some important lessons about myself during it. After the dust settled, Burt was moved to the trunk of my car and that's where he was...until Saturday.
Vahona and I walked to my car to put our apples away so that we could continue our adventure without being weighed down by produce. I looked in the trunk, my laundry bin had shifted and there, in front was Burt. The timing seemed right, something moved me to take Burt out, say goodbye and sit him on the post in front of my parking spot. I looked at Vahona and said "it's time to move on." We walked away.
I remarked, as we were heading back towards the orchard, that if Burt was still there, I would take him and put him back in the trunk. If he was gone, that's what was meant to be.
As we left, I forgot to look. I think that's the way it was intended.
I hope he wasn't there. I hope some child came along, saw it and his or her parent decided it was safe to give their kid and he's making some child smile. Thinking about that makes me smile.
Last weekend was one of those rare autumn weekend when the weather is like a summer day. I took full advantage of this. On Saturday, I went apple picking with my dear friend Vahona. She lives about an hour away, in Portage, Indiana. Close to her home is the County Line Orchard. We visited the orchard 2 years ago at this time and it was a completely different experience. It was cooler outside, kind of rainy, and the place was ours to wander at our leisure. Last Saturday the place was packed. Regardless, we had fun. Heck, Vahona and I would have fun in gridlock traffic.
I ended up with about 10 pounds of apples. I will probably bake cakes for work. Maybe I'll eat a couple as-is.
(photos of me courtesy of Vahona)
After our adventure in the Orchard, we wandered through the gift shop and then got out of there with our sanity barely in tact. It was so crowded, we even decided to avoid the bakery section, including the apple cinnamon donuts. Instead, we opted for gas station broasted chicken! YUM!
Sunday, I celebrated Polo's birthday with Dan, Denise, Luis and Tina. The six of us met for brunch at Deleece, a long-established restaurant in the Wrigleyville neighborhood of Chicago. I had never been there, it was quite a treat! The six of us had a delightful time. Afterwards, everybody went their separate way, except for Denise and I who did some shopping, both of us leaving the stores with Chirstmas gifts! Now the challenge is to remember that I bought them and where I put them. :)
If I were to score this weekend, I'd hold up the 10 paddle. :)
Okay, I could have tried to be creative and come up with a title that was different than the one that my "Dancing" partner Joy used but I didn't so there.
Dances this week were the Samba and the Tango. Here are my notes:
Maurice and Cheryl – Samba…Maurice’s footwork was messy, otherwise good energy. The judges didn’t see progress this week so their score for this week was 20. 2-week score is 44/60
Cody and Julianne - Tango…some nice moves but Cody looks awkward. Nicely done though. Ooh, he ended up on top of her! Bruno loved it. So did Carianne and Len, too! Wow. T.W. = 23. 2w = 44/60.
Toni and Alec – Samba…They’re attempting a samba roll. And they did it…but leading up to it she looked so out of step. But we’ll see what the judges say about it. Carianne called it sensual. Yes…Len pointed out that she did miss a step and it threw her off. T.W. = 22. 2w = 44/60.
Cloris and Corky – Tango…a LOVELY tango. She did GREAT! She doesn’t have quite the “pop” that the younger ones have but for her age it was so nice! T.W. = 22. 2w = 38/60
Rocco and Karina – Samba…it was cute and fun. He looks good in black tight pants. Judges are disappointed. :( T.W. = 18. 2w = 38/60.
Susan and Tony – Tango…She looks great but seems without emotion. Hmm… Okay…Carianne loved it! Len loved it. Bruno did too. Shows what I know. LOL. T.W. = 24. 2w = 45.
Brooke and Derek – Samba…OH MY GOD! HOT! Jiggles and hips and legs and wow. Len was offended, Bruno needs a smoke. Carianne was very pleased. T.W. = 26. 2w = 54.
Lance and Lacey – Tango…a goth tango. Hmmm…Nicely done. His kicks aren’t as high as someof the others did. Okay, they looked good. Bruno was happy. Carianne loved it! Apparently so did Len. T.W. = 26. 2w = 48.
Warren and Kim – Samba…He oozes cool. He’s got the entertainment value and the footwork down. I think I may have a bit of a crush on him! LOL TOO CUTE!! Judges cited them for lack of content. Oh well. T.W = 22. 2w = 47.
Looks like Rocco will be going home. :(
Next week…hustle, jitterbug, west coast swing or salsa! 4 new dances for the competition! YAY! Should be fun, I absolutely LOVE the jitterbug!!!
Results tomorrow night. I'll say a prayer and light a candle for Rocco but I don't think it'll help.
Tuesday, October 7, 2008
The twist is, that the scores and votes earned this week will carry forward to next week and get added to the scores earned next week so Rocco and Karina will need to earn high marks and get a lot of votes in order to stay.
I was surprised to see that Cloris was saved and it was announced early on. I think she was surprised too.
The competition continues next Monday.
Pictured below are Kim and Melissa. Today is their wedding day.
I met Kim a few years ago, she's one of my Go-Go's friends. She and her friend Glenn live in San Francisco. We all became friends thanks to a message board. The Go-Go's played a couple shows in Vegas so a bunch of us went to the shows. I met a lot of people but there were a few people with whom I bonded with. Kim is one of those people. She's got the same twisted sense of humor, she's smart, she's fun to be around and she's gorgeous.
This morning on our QTS message board, Kim posted an announcement. She and Melissa decided to get married today. I'm guessing there was a bit of planning on their part, I'm sure there are things that need to be done before you can just walk in and get married but we found out about it today. They decided to do it before the November 4 election because they understand that it can't be made retroactively illegal if the law is repealed. They will have a big party later at their leisure.
So, on this important day, I wish my dear friend Kim and her beautiful partner Melissa all the best. I congratulate them on being a part of history and wish them a lifetime of love and happiness and laughter.
Monday, October 6, 2008
Apparently a lot of drama and heartbreak took place since the stars began learning their next dances. There were injuries, there were disagreements, and one star’s dancing days were over long before they should have been. This week’s dances were the Jive and the Viennese Waltz. In order, here are my notes as I watched the performances.
Susan and Tony – Jive. Lively and cute. She’s still not great on her feet but is executing some nice kicks. Looks like she’s being cautious. Apparently she’s twisted her ankle, she’s wearing a bandage. Wow she’s got big teeth! And wow, her boobs are out there, too! Judges were kind, had some pointers but they liked it. Score – 21/30
Lance and Lacey – Viennese Waltz. Traditional, very in character. They looked great. Nice posture and footwork. Carrie Ann LOVED it. Len and Bruno weren’t won over but they said nice things. 22/30
Maurice and Cheryl – Jive. Very busy, he seems a bit rushed but seems to have the steps down and the routine is cute. 24/30. Not sure I agree with that score but perhaps the judges are being generous tonight.
Rocco and Karina – Viennese Waltz. Sweet, but not great. He’s just not so great on his feet. I give him credit for trying. He sure looks good in his white pants. Bruno isn’t a fan, Len and Carianne liked it! 20/30.
Warren and Kim – Viennese Waltz – Very nice! He moves so nicely. His feet look good, seems to be keeping in step with her, light on his feet! 25/30
Cody and Julianne – Jive. Cute and energetic but it had a weird bridge and then it started over again. Seemed a bit awkward. Judges weren’t thrilled with it. 21/30
Toni and Alec – Viennese Waltz. She’s in a period dress and it looks like they’re going to do some sort of flip. Hmm…Uh oh, I think I saw a lift. Okay, no flip. Good. Carrianne loved it, Bruno and Len did not. Carianne didn’t see a lift. Toni looks pretty though. 22/30
Cloris and Corky – Jive. OH. MY. GOD! Wow. She tried…she did better than I ever could. 16/30
Brooke and Derek – Viennese Waltz. Ooh, tension. Aww…she kissed her daughter at the end of their number. Sweet. It was a great dance, I thought. She looks so pretty. Judges LOVED it. 28/30
Misty is out, she ruptured her Achilles tendon. In showing the rehearsal tape, the sound of it pop. Aww…I’m so sad for her and sad that I won’t get to see Maks on a weekly basis.
Who will go home? Well, as much as I adore Cloris, I think it would be a blessing for her to hang up her dancing shoes. You can’t beat the entertainment she brings but it’s becoming uncomfortable watching her attempt the moves. I get nervous that she’s going to get hurt. I have a feeling she’ll last one more week, it could be Rocco’s last dance. I’ll be sorry if he goes because I love looking at him. He’s a cutie.
Stay tuned…results tomorrow!
Luis' birthday was last Thursday. Dan took him to NYC for the weekend. Meanwhile, Denise, Tina, Polo and I were planning a little lunch for him when they returned on Sunday. Everybody cooked something. I baked cupcakes for dessert.
The plan was, I baked on Saturday and was going to wake up Sunday morning, have a bit of breakfast and some coffee, make some frosting and frost the cupcakes. Alarm was set for 8 am.
The first text message arrived at 7:51. It was Dan sending a frantic message. "We're on and earlier flight! Land at 10:30!"
The second and third text messages came from Polo, relaying Dan's message and saying "it's okay, get here at 10:45, they arrive at 11:15. No worries. The last message woke me up, it was 7:59. No sooner than I said the words "Shit! What the FUCK?!" my alarm went off.
I jumped out of bed and ran into the kitchen and began pulling ingredients out of the refrigerator and cabinets. Mesauring cups were flying, I had the mixer but couldn't find the beaters. We have 2 sets, I kept finding both "left" beaters. Finally I found the left and right. Had I been making one kind of icing it would have been fine but I was making two kinds.
They got done, the cupcakes got frosted, I did my best not to lock my mom in a closet because she decided she wanted to make breakfast. Okay I get it, you need to eat...low blood sugar, yada yada. Fine. ;-)
Still I had less time to do things. That meant no coffee and no time to shave. I was clean, my teeth were brushed, I had on matching shoes and socks, I call that success.
We were a hasty little bunch at the house, getting stuff in the ovens, setting up dessert. Tina, bless her heart, she made coffee.
Dan and Luis arrived home, we had a fantastic lunch of ribs, chipotle mashed potatoes, butternut squash, a baked tomato dish, and loaded corn bread. Oh, and cupcakes.
Luis was surprised and happy and as usual it was another fantastic day with my wonderful friends.
No pictures of us, there are enough pictures of us in previous posts, but check out the cupcakes! :-)
The cupcake tree - coconut cupcakes and chocolate cupcakes.
The coconut cupcakes - Ina Garten's "Barefoot Contessa" boxed mix. I could have done them from scratch but decided to try the box. Delicious!!
Chocolate cupcakes with Luis' favorite chocolate frosting - Cake recipe courtesy of Martha Stewart's baking handbook, frosting recipe couretsy of Hershey's cocoa - it's on the back of the canister! So easy, and so yummy!
Tiny gold Buddha with intentions of maintaining his waistline, decides to try to sneak off with a cupcake.