Wednesday, May 31, 2006
Right now I just feel tired. But excited. Last night was Open Improv at Bucketworks and tonight is a 102 class. Brand new, and I'm going to it. Actually, I'm really looking forward to it. One of the best things about doing all this improv is that members of my sketch group, BroadMinded, are doing this too. We're really getting to know each other so much better, and that builds trust, which translates to better work on stage.
I'll have to finish packing tonight too. So much to prepare for. Two nights (one in a hotel, one at my brother's house) with regular clothes, then one night camping when we're doing the Avon Breast Cancer Walk. Tomorrow will be a super day with my sisters. I'll pick them up at the Naperville train station and we're just going to have a fun day, ending at Jim and Karen's house--where we always have a great time. It's become a tradition, before we go into Chicago to prepare for the walk, we stay at their house one night.
Then Friday we go into Chicago for "Event Eve." Registration and meetings for me. Registration and relaxation for Jane and Jan, since they are walking. Forty miles. Wow. This is Jan's fifth year walking. I walked with her the first year (when it was three days and 60 miles). Since then I've been working on the Incident Response crew and am the Operations team leader. Jane joined us the second year and has been working on the Medical Crew. This is her first time walking. I'm so proud of both of them. (In the picture Jan, in the middle, looks a little like a drowned rat. That's because she walked the 40 miles, and the last of it was in rain. We're wearing our Victory Shirts.)
This is our special weekend, and always provides so many memories. Knowing you are really making a difference in the lives of many underserved women and men--it makes the "no sleep" and tired feet seem insignificant. (Yes, even though I'm not walking, I'm on my feet most of the weekend.)
Our goal is to kick breast cancer's ass. (I'm probably mixing my metaphors, but you get my drift.)
Tuesday, May 30, 2006
Mom would have been 81 today. Sadly she died when she was younger than I am--at 55. Still miss her.
Never thought I'd say this, but I stole something from my brother Joe's blog. A picture of eight of us with Mom and Dad at Jay's wedding. Anyone (who is NOT a relative) want to guess which one is me? Yes, it's one of the standing females. No jokes, Joe.
Monday, May 29, 2006
She's one of the people who taught me I can change the world. Read an entry from a past blog, about Jill's favorite bedtime story. The story of how I met Jill and immediately fell in love with her.
Today, my darling Jill is 32. Legally at least. Because of her adventures getting out of Vietnam as an infant, we know she's actually a few months younger. We didn't want to make waves and get her birth certificate changed, so she kept May 29th as her birthday.
Betty Tisdale remains my hero. My daughter, Jill Hong, remains my dearest, sweetest, precious one. Happy birthday, darling. What a gift you are!
Sunday, May 28, 2006
And Brangelina's baby is talked about before the tragedy.
Our priorities are screwed up.
Saturday, May 27, 2006
It's a no-fault break up. We just weren't meant for each other. I'll continue to say what a great guy he is, and I'll mean it every time I say it. I'm sure Russ will say kind things about me as well.
This isn't easy. But it's right.
Friday, May 26, 2006
There are two things going on that are helping me to feel a little better. One is that on the CSz forum I posted a topic called--I'm Sad. And I asked people to amuse me. I'll tell you, these people are professional comedians for a reason. They made me laugh out loud. One sent an extreme close up of her face. Others posted pictures of their pets. Still others told me horribly "punny" jokes that made me chortle. I'm very lucky.
Two is that a friend just walked by my office and said that since there aren't many people at work today we're going to have pizza from Eduardo's. I knew there was a reason (besides sadness) that I didn't bring lunch with me today. So that will be something to look forward to. I told her I wanted a whole cheese pizza to myself. Hey, am I the only one who eats when she's depressed? Come on, be honest.
Thursday, May 25, 2006
The above makes me happy.
The reason she had to defend me makes me unhappy.
That's life. Ya takes da good wit da bad.
(The last sentence was me practicing a New York accent. Last night's dialect workshop was awesome. I'm finally confident enough to do a Scottish accent and an upper-crust British one. Definitely worth the money.)
Wednesday, May 24, 2006
Snip: Last night at Bucketworks was so much fun. There were about 20 people there. Sometimes there are only six or seven, so this was quite exciting. I really had a good time.
Snip: Several people went out for a beer afterward. I went for one. A nice group of folks, and I had a good time. Too bad I have to get up early or I would have stayed longer.
Snip: Again there were four of us from BroadMinded there. It's great to work together more and more. It helps to build the group cohesiveness and also to help us be able to predict how the other person will perform, and what works well with her. One of the objects is to make the other person look good. If you know them well, you can do that even better.
Snip: My family is getting together this weekend at a nephew's house. I love Milwaukee, but would love it more if it were closer to Quincy. Six hours is a bit much to drive one way for a picnic. Another sigh.
Snip: Since Russ is working nights in California for several weeks, it's like we're living in parallel universes. Hard to communicate, but we're doing our best.
Snip: Am working on Memorial Day because I need to take an extra day off during the week. Will take off Thursday and Friday, because next weekend is the Avon Breast Cancer Walk. Am picking up my sisters at the train station in Naperville on Thursday and we're just going to have a sisters' day. I'm thrilled at the prospect. I love them so much and we have a great time together. Then we'll spend the night at my brother and sister-in-law's home in Aurora. Friday we'll go into Chicago for Event Eve. As a team leader I have a few separate meetings to go to that day.
Snip: Talked to Jill and the kids yesterday morning. Technology makes communication so much easier. I can not only talk to my daughter and grandkids but I can see them on my computer screen.
Snip: Haven't said it yet today--I'm a lucky bug. Indeed I am.
Tuesday, May 23, 2006
I'm still a little shocked about how much my kids love me. I know you're supposed to love your Mom, but I'm not an ad for Betty Crocker, and it's wonderful to be surprised at the depth of my children's love. I'm such a lucky bug.
That's another reason I want to do something really meaningful. My life is so good, and I'm extremely grateful. People like me should give back. And there's no way to rest on my laurels. The fact that I blah blah blah a few years ago or whatever doesn't enter into the equation. There's no set of scales measuring if one person has given enough in his/her life.
And there's no comparison to another person--Horatio does this much, but Cricket only does this much. None of that matters. We each give what we give. Some of us feel called to work behind the scenes and never get recognition, some of us feel called to work within our family or community, some of us are Don Quixote types and do grand gestures that may or may not make a difference in the world. I don't know why I'm the way I am. Too much introspection is the territory of the young. It gives me headaches.
My faults are very evident. I like that a few of my virtues are too. Too bad the faults greatly outnumber them. Guess that makes me human. And very quixotic.
Looking for windmills.
(My real blog for today will be published a little later.)
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NOODLES AND COMPANY
Go to their website and sign up for their birthday program. You'll not only get free food on your birthday (which you'd also get if you signed up in the restaurant), you'll also get a coupon via email for free food right away. Our receptionist here at work just told me about this. She was eating her food. And I'd just eaten at the restaurant. I love their pastas and soups and salads. In other words--everything. So go to noodles.com and sign up. (Unless you're my relatives in Quincy IL, where they don't have this restaurant. Sorry 'bout that.)
Monday, May 22, 2006
I've always done volunteer work. Lots of it. Right now, my sisters and I are preparing for a full weekend of the Avon Breast Cancer Walk in Chicago. It'll be here in less than two weeks. Certainly that's volunteer work, but it's not a huge commitment for me. As a team leader I do a tiny bit of work ahead of time, and lots during the weekend itself. Then it's over until next year. (I raised over a thousand dollars again this year, which is pretty cool, since as a crew member I'm not required to fundraise.)
Memories can flood me when I think of the many volunteer activities throughout the years, with some requiring weekly commitments over several years. But the one that felt so "right," was when I worked with individuals impacted by Hurricane Wilma last year. I was there for 17 days, but could have stayed much longer if I could have afforded it. Sure there's the adrenaline rush when you work in the aftermath of a disaster. But the adrenaline doesn't carry you through long periods, when the work becomes just plain work, rather than an exciting adventure. Yet, there's such a feeling of satisfaction, and even contentment, when you're doing work that you believe you are made to do. This kind of work is where my education, certifications, and experience has led me.
With Médecins Sans Frontières/Doctors without Borders (MSF), the shortest amount of time to volunteer is six months. After being gone that amount of time, I know I wouldn't be able to return to my job. While there, I couldn't make my condo payments. So to do this would mean giving up my home and my job. Is it worth all that to pursue a dream? ("Yes," she whispered.)
My original plan was to do this when I retired, after quitting my job, but before returning to Quincy to live. Now I know that I can't count on my good health to last. Life is fragile. I need to do this while I am healthy, and physically able. Perhaps I'll be this healthy and able until the day I die (knock on wood), but there are no guarantees.
Okay, just dreaming out loud today...
Sunday, May 21, 2006
Today CSz Milwaukee had their banquet. Food was good, everyone was dressed up, people were funny, that's about it. I had a good time.
Now I have to pick up my place because the cleaners are coming tomorrow. If I don't put things away they won't have anything to dust, because all the surfaces are covered.
And here is a picture from Russ's and my trip to Southern California.
Saturday, May 20, 2006
Last night was another fun night. I was supposed to learn about running music in the tech booth but Dick was the one doing it for the show and he really didn't know a lot about it himself. So I'm going to ask AJ or Mike to teach me instead. I watched the 7:30 show with Lupe and really enjoyed myself. The 10:00 show was a special sketch comedy show by The Gentlemen's Hour. I know two guys in that group--the aforementioned Mike, and Patrick who is involved in the Bucketworks open improv. They were so funny. Everything went smoothly and was hysterical. I know that BroadMinded has a long way to go. But Dick said to let him know when we're ready to play at 10 on a Friday at CSz. Something to look forward to, that's for sure. I'm afraid we'll have to cut our group down a bit since some folks can never come to practice, and haven't written any material either. I personally don't mind if people don't write--I love doing that, and adjusting the script based upon edits from everyone. Seems to work well.
Watched the show with Melissa and Michele. Michele had just flown in from NYC, so was tired, but she seemed to enjoy the show. Megan was there too, but was with another group of friends, so we waved from afar. :)
So many fun evenings this week, but I'm glad I don't have to go anywhere today. Yay. Lots of work to do here, though.
Tomorrow is the CSz banquet for staff. Should be fun.
Friday, May 19, 2006
On the way home I talked to Russ a little while. He was at an Irish pub and the karaoke was just going to start.
After I got home I watched the finals of American Inventor. The right guy won. Janusz, a Polish immigrant. Beata, I should have told you about the show so you could watch.
Tonight is The Gentlemen's Hour at 10 at CSz. Many of us from BroadMinded are attending, to see how it's done. :) But when Dick told me he's doing sound for the 7:30 show (and he usually only does stuff like that when there's no one else available), I told him that I'd love to learn any of the skills for the tech booth. It would be something new for me. So he said he'd teach me tonight, since that would help him learn more. Apparently he's pretty new at it too. So I'm going in early so the instruction can begin. Should be fun. And interesting.
Thursday, May 18, 2006
1. He laughs at us. That's super because we're fledgling comics and need a "guru" to think we're funny.
2. He stops us when he thinks we could do better. Not as a punishment, but in order to give us a "do over."
A good use of my time last night. Megan was the only other BroadMinded member there. She arrived with a bowl of soup--a HUGE bowl, and she'd driven while eating soup. Gotta love a multi-tasker.
It was fun. Can't wait for the one next Wednesday.
Tonight I work in the box office at CSz, and Megan is bartending. I told her we're seeing each other every night this week, and I'm going to get used to that.
I'm a Chevrolet Corvette!
You're a classic - powerful, athletic, and competitive. You're all about winning the race and getting the job done. While you have a practical everyday side, you get wild when anyone pushes your pedal. You hate to lose, but you hardly ever do.
Take the Which Sports Car Are You? quiz.
Wednesday, May 17, 2006
There were six or seven other people there so we had a nice improv workout. Didn't go out for a beer afterward because Mary Jo was sick, Melissa had to get up early to teach, and Megan was getting sick too, I think. Didn't talk to Maria about it. But I was fine with getting home by 10:30. After all, I had to watch American Idol that I'd taped. :)
Tonight some of us will attend Eric Price's workshop at CSz. He is probably the best improviser there. Such a talented guy. But also nice as hell. He's been in several commercials, Reno 911, and the movie Godfather of Green Bay. More too, but those are what I remember. He's a really good teacher too, so I'm looking forward to the class.
While I was doing improv last night Russ was singing karaoke. Wish I could have seen/heard that!
Tuesday, May 16, 2006
Tonight I have rehearsal with BroadMinded from 7-8 and then Open Improv at Bucketworks from 8-10. It will be a fun night. Maybe we'll go out for a beer again afterward.
Tomorrow night is a comedy class I'm really looking forward to.
Talked to Russ a few times yesterday. He's bored with being in a hotel for so long. Another six weeks or so before he'll be able to go home.
Spoke to Beata and IMd with Jill. I'm so lucky to have such loving people in my family.
Monday, May 15, 2006
Rob and Beata called a little while later. Rob was getting ready to leave for the field for two months, but they called before he left, which really touched me. (Thanks, Beata!) Then when I got home I found a package from them. They sent a gorgeous card, two fun T-shirts that I'd only wear to work out in (lol), and some lovely mango fragrances from Bath and Body Shop. Smells so good I'll probably be tempted to eat it. Thanks so much you guys for remembering me.
Oh, and my godson, Jordan, gave me some beautiful earrings that I can't wait to wear. (Thanks, Jane.)
PS--on an entirely different subject, I just downloaded new ringtones for the first time. Now my phone plays "You're Beautiful" by James Blunt. When Russ called a few minutes ago, it played and happily surprised me. What a nice tune to hear if you're feeling down (I'm not though). Also downloaded Bad Day. Makes me think of American Idol. I'll use it as a ringtone when I'm in a bad mood.
For my iPod I downloaded Black Horse and the Cherry Tree by KT Tunstall. Love it. Ever since I heard Katherine sing it on AI, I've wanted to have it on my iPod.
John and I were in a heated discussion. He said Folgers was so much better than Starbucks. Of course I had to disagree with that. Then he said, "You know why Starbucks tastes that good? They have an additive."
Gullible Me: "What is it?"
John: "Beef broth."
Now that's what I get for having so many brothers. They all remember how sad I was many years ago when we found out that MacDonalds put beef tallow on their french fries, and when people complained they said, "We never advertised our french fries as vegetarian."
Sunday, May 14, 2006
I bought one of Adam's art works. It's called The Artist Distracted, and it is so neat. I had to leave it at Jan's until I visit with my car, because I was scared to take it on the train. Didn't want to damage it. What's cool is that so many of us in the family have an original "Adam Bozarth."
Then we played "jer games," and I laughed my ass off. Those of us who played the most were Adam, Cody, Eric, Jay, Jeff, and me. Every now and then someone else would jump in like John and Jane. We "performed" for the rest of the family. Aunt Bonnie and Uncle Al seemed to enjoy themselves and they stayed pretty late. (I was so happy to hear from Aunt Bon that she reads my blog every day--Hi, Aunt Bonnie!)
We played games until about quarter to 12. I had to get up this morning at 4:30, so I didn't get much sleep. When we got back to Jan and Tim's I spoke to Russ until almost 1 AM. 3 1/2 hours sleep isn't enough for me, and I felt rough all day.
Jan and Tim are so sweet to let me stay at their lovely home. I had fun even though the visit was so short. Looking forward to returning. Will write more about the trip tomorrow. Right now I'm still tired. But I'm so very happy.
Saturday, May 13, 2006
We got to Jan and Tim's close to midnight, so it was right to bed. Well, except I talked to Russ on the phone first. It's difficult, because there is very bad reception in that rural area. Beautiful home on beautiful acreage, but lousy cell phone reception.
Got up around 8 and had coffee and rolls with Jan and Tim. The rolls were from Underbrink's Bakery, a Quincy staple since 1929. 17th and College has our grade school, church, and Underbrink's. There was a convent on the corner as well, but it was torn down. Anyway, Underbrink's has been in our lives forever. And their nut cups and nut rolls are beyond belief. Yum.
We left for town about 11 and met at Kris's. (Jan and Tim's daughter. Her house is across the street from Joe and Cindy's. Yes, we all get along just fine.) Then Jan, Jane and I walked to the mall to buy Ryka shoes on sale. They are the best walking/running shoes for women, made on a women's last rather than men's. And they are one of the major sponsors of the Avon Breast Cancer Walk. Then we walked to Kelly's for lunch. That's a restaurant that does a great business at both lunch and dinner--cheese soup is a favorite. I was devestated years ago when I found out there was chicken broth in it, and had to stop eating it. Why in the hell did I even ask?
Lunch was great though. Jan, Tim and Kris; Jane, Pete, and Sarah; Aunt Bonnie and Uncle Al; and yours truly. The only one with a single person on her check. Sigh.
After lunch Jan, Jane and I walked to Walgreens, Ben Franklin (to get some things for the cemetary), and then back to Kris's. J and J are walking to the cemetary now.
When Jan and Jane get back, we'll go back to Jan's house to get cleaned up for the celebration. Should be fun. Always is. And I officially vote Joe as the funniest Bozarth. Check out his blog, full of inside jokes that you won't get.
Friday, May 12, 2006
The train leaves at 3, I have a layover in Chicago and leave there close to 6, and arrive in Quincy about 10:15 or so tonight.
I'll only have Saturday to really visit with my family, but I'm going to cram in as much fun as possible. I only hope my nephews are interested in playing "Jer games." (Ooh, that sounds like I'm a perv. Promise that I'm not.)
Thursday, May 11, 2006
Today I broke my phone. My expensive phone. The one I bought six months ago. The one I didn't have insurance on.
Must have a phone by tomorrow because I'm taking the train to Quincy, and my company needs to be able to contact me. So I had to stop and buy another one.
Maybe this time I'll take out the insurance when the 90 day warranty runs out.
Wednesday, May 10, 2006
Talked to Russ for about five minutes this morning, but will talk longer later. My job has been hella busy this week. job security job security job security job security job security
Last night was fun. Four of us from BroadMinded were at Open Improv at Bucketworks. Had a good time. We're going to perform there in August. Ironing out details now. We also hope to perform at CSz.
Afterward MJ and I went out for a beer. It was lovely, even when a really drunk 20-something guy came to our table. He was a little cutie with huge dimples. But when his 40-something drunker than a skunk boss came over, it was a little too much so we took off.
Still it's all fodder for my writing, I guess.
Am going to Quincy this weekend for nephew Adam's college graduation party. Can't wait. Should be fun. Plus I'm taking the train so will have no stress.
Tuesday, May 09, 2006
R and I will talk again late tonight when I'm driving home from downtown. I've got BroadMinded rehearsal from 6-8 and Open Improv from 8-10 and promised Megan and MJ I'd go out for beer and/or food afterward. So it's going to be a really long day, but a fun one.
"Talked" to Jill a bit on IM this morning. She's not starting gymnastics coaching today after all, but Thursday instead. Am looking forward to hearing how much she loves it--or not.
Monday, May 08, 2006
Saturday night we went to ComedySportz LA. It was Russ's first exposure to the genre and he loved it. Sunday we went to Santa Monica pier and one of my best memories will be of the Zydeco band--the ZydeCats. We sat and listened to them for quite a while, and I remember thinking, "This is just perfect."
Maybe more later...
Thursday, May 04, 2006
Mine are still at home in my camera. I need to download them big time, but haven't made the time yet. Will try to do so tonight as I finish packing for L.A.
Here's a picture of Bruce and me at the Bluebird Cafe in Nashville, right before he performed. I ran his video camera and had a perfect seat.
Here's part of our gang in front of the NashTrash bus. It was such fun.
Wednesday, May 03, 2006
We met on March 10 kind of by accident. It was on a website similar to myspace.com but for baby boomers. I read his description, which said he was retired military and some other things. I commented that my son was a career soldier in the Special Forces. He replied and we just kept communicating. Within a few days we were talking on the phone, and have kept it up. Luckily we both have the same cell phone provider and our calls are free. That's super because we talk for hours every day.
We really fell for each other. So after a few months of phone calls, text messages, and emails, we are finally going to meet. Am I nervous? A little. I'm more excited than anything else.
Yes, it's a bit of a risk. But anything worth anything involves risk. This risk is minimal, because I know Russ. He is kind, compassionate, smart, funny, and sexy as hell. (I know my brothers and son are gagging right now.)
So I'm happy. All we need to do is make sure the sparks are the same in person as they are on the phone.
I'm crazy about the guy.
Tuesday, May 02, 2006
Here's what she wants for her birthday (among other things):
A Barbie (this would probably be Barbie #300)
Dress that is good for spinning around
A plastic lizard
And it goes on...
This is a girl of complexity. Make up and a plastic lizard. She does indeed love lizards ever since she met a Komodo dragon (I think that's what it was) in Cancun. She loves snakes too.
And I love her beyond words.
Happy birthday, Kayla. Love, Grandma
Monday, May 01, 2006
Sunday was a superb day. I bought a few new clothes at Coldwater Creek. Had never seen the store, only used the catalog prior to this. It was awesome. And I didn't overspend, so I'm proud of that. Got something nice.
On the way back to the hotel Suzanne and I stopped at another micro-brewery (they're everywhere). This one was Bosco's and the beer was superb. (So was their calzone.)
Then on to the Bluebird Cafe. This venue is for songwriters. And it's difficult to get booked there. But Bruce did it. And he rocked. The place was packed. I ran the video recorder, so had an awesome seat. Drank coke and ate sweet potato fries. A slice of heaven.
It was a delightful evening. Bruce just keeps getting better and better. Some of the gang stayed on for a showcase, and some of us went back to the hotel. I was just getting ready to leave the suite to go to bed when the others arrived, so I stayed for about an hour longer. Then hugs and kisses for all, and I went to my room. Had to pack, then talked to Russ for a while. Didn't really sleep much because I had to get up at 5 to get to the airport.
I'm so knackered that I'm not going to BroadMinded rehearsal tonight. I have to be nearly dead to miss that because I really enjoy it.
Friday Russ and I are meeting in LA. I'm so looking forward to it. Sigh.