Friday, July 05, 2002

Beer Review

Black Hawk Stout - Brewed & Bottled Mendocino Brewing Co., Ukiah, CA

I didn't know if it was beer or tar I was pouring out of the bottle. The head is tan, but doesn't last very long because the fizziness of the beer makes it go away real quick. The first thing I thought of when I inhaled the aroma was "hickory barbeque." Fortunately, this is one of those beers that gets better as it warms up. There's a little caramel in there to help balance out the barbeque. A little bitter, too. Pleasantly so. Surprisingly, it's not as filling as other stouts. I think I could drink one of these and still have room for a piece of chicken and a bit of salad. Not much more, though.

Not as good as Amstel Light for burping contests ... even though it is a little fizzy.
I remember in the late 70's and through the 80's when I was growing up, when we would play with action figures or in any role-playing game where there was an enemy, the bad guy always had a really bad Russian accent. Even in movies of the time or tv shows all of the bad guys had Russian accents.

I think this was still true through the 90's and the early 00's - right before 9-11.

Have you noticed that things have changed? Now when I listen to kids role-playing they are putting on really bad middle eastern accents for the enemy. Now, even radio and tv are picking up on it, too. I heard a guy on the radio pretending to be a bad guy and he adopted a middle eastern accent for his character.

I wonder which language or cultural stereotype is going to be next.

Thursday, July 04, 2002

... on why I'm still single ...

You could say I work in a male-dominant environment. I'm one of two females in our office and the only one in a management position. Everyone else is at least 20 years older than me - except one of my co-workers. He's only 10 years older than me. I love my job. Everyone is retired military or retired civil service. It's very relaxed. The people are *real.*

It wasn't until this last Tuesday that I realized why I'm still single. We had a meeting with some government-employed engineers about doing some work for them. These guys were all around my age. Everyone in my company was trying to keep things light, cutting up a little now and then, yet still being professional and conducting business. The government weenies (around my age) looked scared to death, took themselves way too seriously, never laughed, became defensive easily, and seemed a little too tunnel-visioned about the project. In plain English, they were a bunch of sticks in the mud!

This made me ponder the last few dates I've had with various individuals. Hmmm. Yep, the last guy took himself so seriously he couldn't have any fun. He wouldn't build a sandcastle with me at the beach - refused outright! All he wanted to do was sit in *my* chair and drink beer. You can do that at HOME, dude! No wonder I ditched him.

The guy before that was an engineer who thought my career choices and hobbies were "unfeminine." So I like to build little robots! So what? So I used to wrench on airplanes for a living. It helped me get the job I have now! Maybe he was threatened by that. I don't know. I sent him packing, too.

I've dated a few 40-somethings. They're alright, but a lot of them are bitter from paying alimony and child support for so long. One was kind enough to give me the starring role of "Bimbo" is his mid-life crisis. That sucked. Actually, it's pretty funny, but I'll spare you the gory details.

So, what's my solution? I don't have one. I guess I'll just keep plugging along, doing what I love to do, laughing at myself and the dumb mistakes I make, and hope I eventually run into someone who's around my age that is secure enough with himself to have a sense of humor and a little fun once in a while.

Hey, I can dream, can't I?

Tuesday, July 02, 2002

I dreamed I was meeting a group of people for a business meeting in the upstairs of the Mattel Design Center where I used to work. The meeting was for my current job, however. I greeted the customer we were meeting with in the lobby. I told him I used to work in the Design Center and asked him if he wanted to look around. He agreed. I asked Shirley at the desk for a pass to visit my former coworker Jeannie Sanchez.

When the pass door opened, the inside of the Design Center had changed significantly. They were apparently doing some testing on some new arcade games, so the first part of the center was covered in darkened tents and people were inside the tents playing the games. We looked around. I got a little lost and confused in the tents. I saw a former coworker, Michael. I asked him how to get to the Sound Design Studio from where we were and he told us.

When I got out of the tent I looked at the clock on the wall and realized that we had missed our meeting and that I was already late for my second meeting that day. The second meeting was to start at 1:00 pm and it already was 1:00 pm. I figured I was fired. We met up with the other people from the meeting in the hallway and they were making copies of the presentation I was supposed to give. I accepted the fact that I was probably fired. I decided to hop in the elevator and go to the meeting room and see who was left up there from the meeting.

The dream morphed into one of those elevator dreams again where I keep taking the elevator but am never able to get to where I want to go. I then decided to get this guy to come up with me to the top floor and mess around. He kept getting distracted on the way, so I decided to leave him and go do something more interesting.

I was wearing my sarong and decided to go jump in the pool at the top floor where they were giving a show. I knew I didn't belong there. It was really high class and I really didn't fit in. And, my sarong kept opening up and exposing me, which made me double uncomfortable. That, and the people surrounding me kept looking at me weird because I was making repairs to my seat (changing out the light bulbs and things), when normally "service people" would have been doing the repairs. (Why we were sitting on chairs that lit up with light bulbs in the shallow end of the pool is another issue altogether. It was a pretty effect, though.)

Sunday, June 30, 2002

Speech Dream

I dreamed I had to make a convincing speech to an audience of military people for work. Because it was such a large crowd, I used a stage and auditorium for my presentation. I was all over the place and delivered a great presentation; I saw nothing but smiling faces in the crowd. Then, at risk of my job, I decided to make a point. I went to far stage right and had them spotlight me and yelled, "Praise the Lord." As the crowd was going wild, I moved a little more toward stage center and was spotlighted again. I yelled, "Praise Muhammud!" A few in the crowd yelled. I moved to stage center and was spotlighted again. "Hail Buddah," I yelled. I continued on with just about every deity name I knew and then exited the stage. Much to my surprise, I didn't get fired.

Under Bob

I have always thought that the prayers we said in school and the "under god" statement in the Pledge were inappropriate. Even as a young child in grade school I knew that not all people in this country believe in god, and this is supposed to be a country for ALL people. I personally have my own brand of spirituality, and I'm extremely patriotic - having been raised by a Marine and served in the Air Force myself.

It always made me uncomfortable at graduations and other events when prayers would be said. They were always Christian prayers that referred to god as HIM and Our Father. I always thought it was unfair to inflict one's beliefs on another at an important event such as graduation. This is probably why I've avoided most traditional graduations and public events.

When I voiced this uncomfort to peers, I was often ridiculed. People always told me that this nation was founded on Christianity, so I had better suck it up and shut up. I did a little research on this and found it to be untrue. The Christians did not found this country. The Free Masons did. That makes me feel a little better; they're closer to being pagans (like me) than Christians.

I am all for people keeping their religion in their own way. I'm equally supportive of those who have no religious beliefs. I will be very glad of the day when we evolve to the point where we realize that such phrases like "under god" or prayers at graduation really do alienate people. People like me. Like athiests. Like other pagans. Like anyone who has a spirituality other than Judeo/Christianity.

As our "minority" numbers grow, things will change. We just need to have courage and a voice.