Tuesday, July 29, 2008

My heart belongs to Heart

Holy wow.

That sums up my concert experience on Friday. We arrived at the concert venue right about 7:30, traffic was HORRIBLE, so we missed half of Cheap Trick's set. We walked to our seats to "I want you to want me", which is one of my favorite songs that they sing. The only "bad" thing about Friday (besides the awful traffic and stale humidity) was having it follow Cruefest. Let's see if I can conjure up a mental image for you...

Cruefest - The crowd is about our age, but there are young (talking like 12-16yos - hey, I'm not the parent here) and then there are old (yep, the old ladies I was describing and their counter parts) people. All there, screaming, out of their seats, jumping up and down in the mosh pit area (where I happen to be). Then there are the artists...heavy metal bands tend to dominate the entire stage, they have props, they have pyro, they have cool lighting going on and they have...energy.

Cheap Trick, Heart and Journey - Well...the crowd is an AVERAGE of 58yo. The crowd stays seated the ENTIRE concert and if you get up in excitement they stare you down until you're seated once again. The artist dominate their one spot on the stage, if they move at all it's just a little circle area where the other band members are. Energy? I suppose through their voices, but not their actions.

The highlight of my night was seeing Heart. I love seeing the classics. As I've said previously, I've had the honor of seeing KISS and Aerosmith, and whether you like them or not they are legends. These bands have been around FOR-EVER.

Sorry, back to Heart...they toned down their 80s hits to sound more modern (less cheesy), they did most of them acoustically. They played for about an hour and every time Ann Wilson hit the sweet spot it made me want to weep. She has the power to make every hair on your body stand at attention. Nancy Wilson was awesome too, of course, playing the guitar, hitting the duet right on the money, and dancing around the stage like a little pixie. Truly amazing. Journey was the headlining band, but Heart stole the show.

Friday, July 25, 2008

More music please!!!

Short one for today. I'm leaving early...again...to go to a concert in San Antonio...again. This time it will be Cheap Trick, Journey and Heart. I'm DYING to see Heart, classic rock rules. I'm thinking that the crowd for this concert may be a little different than the one for Motley Crue, I don't know...call me crazy. But I will report my findings this weekend.

Legs is coming into town today for the weekend - YIPPEE! I'll get to see her, her husband and her fabulous little bundle of energy. Also on the agenda for the weekend is a training session with Trainer. He booted me from his schedule because he was 'too busy' but I maneuvered my way back in at the new facility. Hopefully I'll get my tight abs back along with some confidence. :)

Since this is so short today I'll leave you with a little game:

SCATTERGORIES - Using the first letter of your name
BOY NAME : Rusty
BEVERAGE: Rum Runner
FOOD: Rigatoni
FRUIT: Raspberries

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Boobfest....I mean Cruefest

Let me start off by saying, Motely Crue rocks. I've seen some pretty amazing concerts in the past decade, but this made it into the top 5.

Trainer and I haven't really been fighting, but we haven't been peaches and cream lately either. The stress of the new business is taking a little bit of a toll, mostly on me. I'm trying to be supportive, but I think I'm being a little overbearing and possibly a little needy. I feel like I NEED to be in control, but it's not my business. I feel like I NEED him to want to spend more time with me because he has more time on his hands, but that time happens to be when I'm working. It's a no win situation for him. And yet, I can't stop myself from this behavior. What is that?? It's similar to those times when you start to say something and it's coming out wrong, but you just can't stop yourself! Have you ever had one (or many) of those moments? The chick on your shoulder is saying "Shut the F- up!" and you just keep rambling. Ugh, yeah...

Anyway, Trainer was late getting home from his meeting and then he wasn't rushing to get ready. We were picking up our friends and so I finally asked, "Did you at least call them?" He says, "Yeah." That's it. No more words came from his mouth. Fine. I just read until he was ready to go. Then on the way over we didn't talk at all, it was that uncomfortable silence. So, when we get to New Orleans' apartment I say, "Is it going to be weird like this all night?" And he says, "What are you talking about??" I say, "These one word answers? I'm trying to communicate with you and all I get is a one word answer!" He says, "Whatever." UGH! So, fake it til you make it comes into play and we act like the happy couple that we are. ;) Haha. Trainer was supposed to drive down and I was staying sober and driving back so they could get their drink on at the concert. Well, as soon as we go to pick up the devilish duo New Orleans opens a beer for Trainer. So, I drove both ways. Terrific, that helped my mood.

We get to the venue and Trainer say, "Sorry." But in a way that you know that he's just saying it and not really meaning it. I say, "For what?" and just shrug my shoulders. We go to find our seats and it turns out that we are in the orchestra section...which is the mosh pit area...and there are no chairs. Now, for the true blue concert goer you're thinking, 'Uh, yeah, you stand up the entire concert anyway, what's the big deal?' However with my leg 'issue' I like to sit down every once in a while, but I'll make due. Brassy didn't realize that we didn't have actual seats, but I wasn't mad. Everyone always thinks I'm mad?? What is up with that? Anyway, the music was already going when we got there.

There were five bands in all - Trapt, Sixx: A.M., Papa Roach, Buckcherry and of course the Crue. My favorite was Crue of course, but I have to say that I may start listening to more Papa Roach. He was so good on stage and actually jumped into the mosh pit. Buckcherry...I could leave 'em, not a big fan of their concert, Trapt was new, but good and Sixx: A.M. has some real potential. Their lead guitarist is this crazy kid who resembles Nikki Sixx and looked like he was 17. Tropical storm Dolly blew through so it was nice and cool with a little bit of rain. We were under the covered area so it wasn't bad at all. The boobs were pretty much under "control" until the Tit E. Cam came out with Tommy Lee of Motley Crue. I mean, there were plenty on display...and some amazing feats of defying gravity. We had the trashy 50 year olds trying to look 20 that pulled their tiger striped hooker boots out of the closet and on the other side of the age spectrum we had the 20 year olds that were trying to look just old enough to drink legally.

When Motley Crue took the stage I was amazed, more amazed at how excited I was. I don't even know all the words to all of their songs, but I could sing the chorus with the best of them! I was probably 20 feet away from Nikki, Vince, Tommy and Mick. And let me tell you, Mick Mars can still play a mean guitar, he was amazing, although he really just stood in one spot. Tommy is still sexy in that really, really bad boy way, Nikki still has that I f-ing rock because I came back from the dead...more than once...thing going on and Vince still has the lungs to make you smile and want to take off your clothes.

The three kids drank, but didn't get wasted, that was a relief. I drove us home after stopping off for breakfast/dinner at 1am. I was exhausted and woke up at 8:30am because Fifi just HAD to be fed. Things seem to be better with Trainer and I this morning. But, I'm sure it's all me. I'M better, which makes US better. Who knows. I just hope this all passes soon. I'm not even PMS-ing...WTF. Now it's time for me to stop wasting time...haha...and get ready to go into work. It's going to be a late night tonight...and then tomorrow...Heart, Journey and Cheap Trick. Concert-o-rama baby!

I'll leave you with this question - What do you do to get out of that cycle of self-defeating behavior?

Wednesday, July 23, 2008


This is the week that Trainer has been waiting almost three months for...Motley Crue is coming to town for CrueFest and we have tickets. I'm a Metal Head by marriage. Any of you who know my background know that I studied classical music, and I grew up listening to the oldies station as far as rock n' roll goes. I was never much of a concert goer, we didn't have the money for it growing up and my musical taste was so non-committal that I didn't want to go see someone just to see them.

Since I started my relationship with Trainer I've been to six (possibly seven) KISS concerts, three Sammy Hagar concerts, an Aerosmith concert (which was f-ing COOL), a Velvet Revolver concert, and a smattering of other hair band concerts. I've also been privileged enough to see some of my favorite acts, but we're just talking about Metal here. Tonight we'll be driving to San Antonio (about an hour and a half or more) to see five heavy metal bands. I'm looking forward to the people watching. If ever I have doubts about how I look, these people always make me feel better. I know, that's a horrible thing to say, but really...these kinds of concerts are where they get those pictures that everyone sends around the Internet such as "white trash tank top." You know the one, where the woman is wearing men's underwear as a tank top?? Yeah, well, I'm looking forward to watching those and the slutty girls at the concert. Maybe I should keep a tally of the number of breasts that I see tonight.

The only bad part, if there is one, is that I'm the designated driver. We're going with Brassy and her beau New Orleans. They are a riot, very sweet and can be LOUD. They also can put down the booze...and then Trainer, being a competitive person with everything, will try and keep up. Good times. Then comes the end of the night where I have to corral them up, get them into the Tahoe and drive back home. I'm hoping that they'll all be good little ones and pass out so I have a quiet trip home...despite the ringing in my ears from being in the seventh row from the stage in the center.

I'll post tomorrow to let you know how it all went down.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008


What is fear. Fear is an individual thing. There is rational fear and irrational fear.

Rational fear - You're walking down a street in a foreign city and you see a lone man coming your way and he's armed. He asks for your purse...that is rational fear.

Irrational fear - I have so many examples of this that I could write a book that no one would read because they all KNOW what irrational fear is. However I had a bout of this on Friday, the 18th.

In 1992 I had a blood clot, I had been on birth control pills for five months and so that was the reasoning. There were no more tests done, we didn't look at family history. I was put in the hospital, lucky for me it was a private room, for eight long days. Hooked up to an IV of Heparin, a blood thinner, and not moving except side to side when they changed my sheets. When I cried at night because I was scared and alone I was told that I was lucky, that I was walking out of the hospital eventually. The only room open at the time that I arrived was on the cancer floor. So at the age of 18, almost 19 I was told that my feelings were irrational. I had nothing to fear, despite my doctor telling me that I was lucky to be alive after flying for 4 hours with a blood clot, and a large one at that. My clot started in my groin and went down to mid-calf. But, I was going to be lucky and walk out of the hospital.

In 2003 I was having leg pain. My co-worker and I were implementing a new software system for work and we were working 12-14 hour days with no break and drinking very little water. It was January and cold. I was wearing boots, mid-calf, which never fit really well because my left calf was always a little swollen. It never did go all the way down from 1992. However, on this day I could barely zip up the boot, at all, only a little past my ankle so that it would stay on. I brushed off the pain. I didn't want to seem like a hypochondriac. It kept hurting and the next day, when I could barely get my jeans on I called the doctor. My doctor was out but another one in their office got me into her schedule. She tried to pull up the leg on my jeans, but couldn't so I had to take them off...she had to help me get them off because the leg was so swollen. "Well," she said, "it's either a dvt or it could be a burst cyst over the muscle." Oh, how I was praying for a burst cyst, which is really sick if you think about it. The thought of having another dvt (deep vein thrombosis) was unnerving to say the least.

I went to the ultrasound place to get my leg looked at. I was in the middle of training on this new software packaged and almost more panicked that I would be gone from work for too long. I waited in the lobby for my name to be called, sweating and cold with my leg bouncing up and down from nerves. They called me back and I undressed from the waist down and I laid on the table. It was a woman tech and she started at the usual place, right at the groin. She went down just a little bit, about halfway down my thigh, and then back up. "Well, there it is." And then the tears started falling. I have no idea why I was crying. I didn't want it to be true. She had the doctor on site confirm and I wasn't allowed to move until they talked to my doctor. It was decided that I was too young just to do injections and hope that it would go away. The clot was too big. They decided that I was to go into ICU, to do this new treatment for dvt's. Okay, great. But it turned out okay, for a couple of months. I couldn't feel sorry for myself or be scared because I had to reassure everyone else that I was going to be okay.

Later in 2003, just a couple of months later in fact, I was having leg pain again. Same routine, Doppler, more clot, back to the hospital. More ICU and more surgery. But, I'm supposed to feel lucky, again, because I'm going to walk out of this place. I'm still reassuring everyone, reassuring them that the medicine that they are using isn't going to take my blood pressure too low or that when I go unconscious that I'll wake up again. Assuring them that 'I'm fine' and the stents that they placed inside of me don't hurt too much. Assure them that when they ripped the tube out of my leg that it only hurt for a little bit, don't worry...'I'm fine.'

Current day. I go for an annual Doppler every year to check the status of my stents and veins. I have a tremendous amount of scar tissue, tissue that no one can see except for the dr and me when I look at the screen. Apparently I take good pictures, on the inside, too bad that won't get me the cover of Elle. On this day I have a new tech, as I usually do because it's a big facility and the chances of having the same person are slim. My case is unusual, I'm in my early 30s and have stents in my illiac vein. They don't see it often so the test takes up to 2 hours.

Every second of this test I'm in a cold sweat and trying to make jokes to get the tech to communicate with me. He says that it's amazing that I have no valve left in my knee, "I know," I say, "but there are worse fates." He says I have a good attitude. Only because he doesn't know what is going on inside my head. The entire time I'm just waiting for him to say, "Yep, there it is..." but he doesn't say that. My test is done, he checks with the radiologist to make sure that what he is seeing is scar tissue and not a new clot. I wait to get dressed, hugging my knees to my chest, sweating, but with a smile on my face. He comes back in and says I'm good to go and closes the door so I can get dressed. I wipe off the substance that they use for ultrasounds with a towel and with shaking hands I get dressed and leave the facility, smiling.

Once I arrive home I sit on the couch. I'm by myself, Trainer has clients, and it's for the best. I cry. I'm exhausted. I faced my irrational fear again, as I'll do next year, and the year after that. I know that one time in the future my stents will close, that's a medical fact. Until that happens I'll smile on the outside and pretend that I'm okay, I'm fine.

Monday, July 21, 2008

10 days of Parenting...

Now, don't get the wrong idea here...I wasn't parenting, my parents were in town for 10 days. I'm going to see if I can remember the "highlights" of their trip up to this point.

"My mother...the travel agent for all my guilt trips."

Day 1 - Monday of last week. I was very excited at this point, my parents only come to visit once a year since they drive down...and that is why they stay for so long. I mean, who wants to drive 20 hours just to go back again in a couple of days? They arrive and everything is okay for like 10 minutes. She starts...yes, I'm talking about my mother...everything that comes out of her mouth is negative, or even if it is something good it comes out sounding negative. 'No worries', I think, 'it was just a long drive, she's just irritated.' Tomorrow will be great!

Day 2 - Tuesday. We decided to go up to the outlets. I needed to get Trainer new work clothes and a new stop watch since his stopped working. Shopping with my mom is a marathon event. Wine is opened early.

Day 3 - Wednesday. Today we went to the "big box" stores. Costco, Sams and the MEGA Whole Foods that we have here in Austin. (Which is a fabulous store, come check it out...hint, hint.) My legs were aching after Costco...then we had to go to Sams to see if they had the right kind of oatmeal (quick oats) that Costco didn't have. Although I could have just gone to the store...but no, I needed the year supply apparently. My friend the Democrat came over for an after work HHH, that is Happy Hour at Home, so I had some relief from entertaining alone. Poor thing had to listen to my mother talk about her home town as if she knew it better than the Democrat. I just sat there...drinking.

Day 4 - Thursday. We went visiting wineries in Hill Country, which is just an hour away from Austin. Beautiful scenery. The first place that we went was an olive farm, very cool, but small...and of course mom had to make some remark about it...dad just rolled his eyes. A good start to the day. Mom wanted to start wine tasting at 10:30...hmmm...I think not. I drove on the way up (our destination was Fredricksburg) and dad drove on the way back so I could drink. On the way home mom asked about what we should do for dinner and I asked what they wanted. Mom says, "I don't know...something light...like a salad." So, I think about all of the places that we're going to pass and she says, "How about we pick up some Rudy's?" Rudy's is bbq, and not light...at all. Trainer was home early so we picked him up and went to Rudy's...where you order meat by the pound.

Day 5 - Friday. Four days is usually my limit. Going on day five and it happens to be a holiday. What to do on a holiday?? Well, we went to the liquor store (do you see a theme here?) and bought stuff to make Mojito's, and beer for dad/Trainer. Then we went downtown to my favorite hamburger place, Hut's, and then we went to check out Trainer's new training facility up in Lakeway. After we arrived home my mom and I read books and the boys watched baseball. Trainer made Mojito's and they turned out pretty good. All was quiet until about 9pm...that's when we hear this 'tap, tap, tap,tap...' It sounded like someone was tapping their fingernail on the front door. Fifi and Fido went NUTS! They stood there in attack mode, barking at the front door. It was the fireworks of course and I had to let them poke their heads through the door to let them see that there was no intruder on the porch. Boy, I wouldn't want to break into my house and face those two...

Day 6 - Saturday. Yep...day six. Trainer had to work in the morning so we chilled out at home and waited for him. This is the day that we were heading down to Houston to see my dad's cousins. They're a riot, I've talked about them before...pretty redneck, but they're family and my dad LOVES seeing them and I love seeing my dad happy. We made the 3 hour trek down there and they were ready for us with beer and wine. They'd been cooking dinner for 48 hours, slow cooked bbq, no one does it better. We ate and drank, and drank...and drank. Luckily we were spending the night.

Day 7 - Sunday. The next morning we had a really fattening breakfast and just after noon we headed back to A-town. Stopping at a couple of places on the way back we didn't get back home until 5 and just had leftovers for dinner. The pups were glad to see us and I was glad to be home. No wine was opened. Trainer had work to do on the computer and the three of us just read.

Day 8 - Monday. Seriously. This was my last official day off from work. Got up early and walked the pups and I drug my mom along with me. After the pups were walked I asked if she wanted to go for another couple of miles, she agreed and we went on a loop around the neighborhood. I was hoping that she would get her "talk" on and out of her system. Boy did she, and that was fine until she started complaining about my dad. THAT was difficult and I think my silence was enough for her to know that it wasn't okay to talk about him. I mean, he's my DAD. I want a friendship with my mom...but not like that. Anywhoo...we got back and had breakfast out with both of them and then we got dad ready to meet with Trainer. My dad wants to get into shape so I thought it would be good if he got a session in with a real trainer. We dropped dad off and then mom and I went here and there. All in all it was a 'eh' day.

Day 9 - Tuesday. Back at work. I don't know what is worse at this point. I had a crap load of emails to catch up on and so much had been happening at work. I was glad that I had the week prior off...crazy c-level people were just that...crazy. I worked a full day and while I was there my dad was a busy baker at home. He was making banana bread, lemon bars and brownies for the office. How cute is that? The Democrat came by to pick up something that she had left the week prior so of course I had to open a bottle of wine. ;)

Day 10 - Wednesday. Back at work again, but only for a half day. My mom wanted to get her hair cut and colored and had me make an appointment with my stylist. I asked her, "Do you know what you want her to do?" Mom, "No, that is what she gets paid for." Oh boy. Maybe I should have picked a random stylist so when I go back I won't be mortified. It turned out okay, though it was touch and go for a minute there. After my stylist was done she asked if mom liked it...and here was her reply, "Well, I like the color...I'll have to wait and do the hair myself to see if I like that." O.M.G. Trainer had to work that night so we went to a restaurant that was close by, then came home and the parents packed up the car. They were getting up at o'dark thirty to beat traffic in the morning. No wine this night.

Day 11 - Thursday. That's right...o'dark thirty arrived and they were ready to go. It was 4:30 on the dot when they pulled out of the driveway. I made them some strong coffee and wished them a safe travel back home. I was exhausted, and not just from getting up at 4 in the morning.

I love my mom, I love my dad, I love that they came all the way down to Austin to see me.

But, I love my house, my freedom, my lifestyle that allows me to walk naked throughout the house...yeah, until next year. I'll drink to that.