Monday, August 24, 2009

The ONE thing I love about Monday hearings

I know my life shouldn't revolve around food,
but the one thing that makes hearing days tolerable is that
every single Monday is
Oso Nacho day.
The corn chips,
two kinds of cheese,
grilled pork,
chipotle sour cream,
pico de gallo,
green sauce covered
make my hearing days
(which consist of me sitting in a stuffy
room at the federal building ALL DAY LONG)
absolutely delightful.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009


Delphinium. Larkspur. My father was flabbergasted that I wanted to plant such a noxious weed in my front yard.

"They kill cows, you know."

"I know Dad, but I live in the city."

"It's a weed."

"It is, but it's a pretty weed."

"I thought I taught you better than to plan noxious weeds."

"You did, but these. . . they remind me of home."

That's all it took for my father to consent to my planting larkspur in my front yard. I'm so glad I did. I can look at my small patch of dirt and every time be reminded of home. Be reminded of going to the mountain and of the smells of rich, black mountain dirt, smoke from the wood stove, and wet grass. I'm reminded of endless summers spent with my family working and exploring. Eating and laughing. Building cabins and playing rummy cube. And family. Cousins, siblings, Aunts and Uncles. One little flower in my small front yard conjures up so many familiar memories. One little flower, in the middle of the city, instantly transports me to my beloved mountain. I think that in itself is well worth the planting of a few noxious weeds.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Taxes. . .As unavoidable as death

Another rant is about proceed from my brain
to my fingertips and onto the screen.
Reader beware.

"And he laid a tax of one fifth part of all they possessed, a fifth part of their gold and of their silver, and a fifth part of their ziff and of their copper, and of their brass and their iron; and a fifth part of their fatlings; and also a fifth part of all their grain."
Mosiah 3:11

I came across that passage in the Book of Mormon awhile ago and have been thinking about it for quite some time. Mosiah chapter 11 introduces us to King Noah and his wicked priests. They taught all sorts of falsities, distorted the word of God, and led the people to do all sorts of abominations. This wicked King and his cabinet priests lived off the backs of the hardworking citizens of the country kingdom. The taxes to support this wicked king and his cronies were burdensome to the people. The king built all sorts of social programs lavish buildings and hacked away at the constitution his father’s righteous teachings.

What’s had me thinking about this is my paycheck stubs. The quoted passage describes one fifth as a burdensome tax and describes the government that took that much in taxes as wicked. One fifth. Twenty cents on the dollar. One twentieth. That number has set me musing. When I do the math on my paycheck stub, I find that I’m being taxed at almost 40%. That number comes even after I deduct my 401(k) from the withholdings. 40%. 40 cents on the dollar. Two fifths. Four tenths. Almost half of my paycheck is being withheld for taxes. Now I know, I’ll get a refund in the spring (or at least I’d better), but James and I have no deductions to speak of (last year I qualified for a $12.00 deduction for interest paid to student loans, wooo whoo). We don’t have a mortgage, kids, or medical expenses, so all the big deductions are, well-unavailable. We’re going to be taxed out the nose, but lets say I do get a refund. Based on last year’s taxes, I will still be paying approximately 30% to local and federal governments. That number makes me sick and frankly, it makes me wish our government were at least as righteous as that of King Noah's.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009


For the last few years I've had a plantar wart. Ewww, gross (how dare someone admit that on a public blog). I've tried all the over the counter remedies and they just pissed the wart off, so it fought back and got bigger, not to mention the fact that they painful as all get out. I tried putting fresh garlic on it. I even tried the duct tape remedy. All duct tape did was to make my big toe look really funny and keep the wart from splitting and being painful. It did not make the wart better.

I finally decided it was time to do something about my wart. I'm sick of finding excuses not to have a girls' day at the spa complete with pedicures. I hate walking around with a big silver toe or choosing closed toe shoes over sandals. So, armed with good insurance, I made an appointment with a local dermatologist.

The dermatologist was took a look at the wart and decided that because of the size and location, I probably didn't want to freeze, cut, or burn it off. Rather we would take it off chemically. I was all sorts of excited for the chemical solution. I had expected to have a huge blister and pain and no shoes for a week, but, as the doctor explained, the chemical removal is PAINLESS. I'm a huge fan of painless and love to disprove the "no pain, no gain" theory. The doctor wrote a prescription for me and I almost skipped (pain free) from his office. What a wonderful day--I could get rid of a wart and suffer no painful side effects. Or so I thought.

My euphoria over the pain free removal lasted as long as it took to get to the Target pharmacy. I gave the pharmacist my prescription and did a little shopping while they filled it. As I was shopping I began to look at the sandals and think how wonderful it will be once I get to wear them wart and pain free. Aaahh, the daydreams.

My daydreams were interrupted when I went to pick up the prescription. The girl that gave it to me said something to the effect of "humm, this prescription is normally five ninety six, but with your insurance it's only one thirty seven." Great! I love insurance that pays for most of a prescription and I only have to pay $1.37 for it. HA was I wrong. The girl behind the counter scanned in the prescription and lo and behold $137.00 shone in bright green numbers.

Standing there in the check out line, I had a mini heart attack. All my dreams of open toed shoes and pedicures almost shattered. For $137.00 I could almost wear duct tape for the rest of my life. But no--maybe I'm too vain. Or maybe I'm too stubborn to say "never mind" I don't need that prescription. Or maybe for a second, I just didn't care about the cost. I numbly handed over my debit card and paid $137.00 for 24 little packets of Aldara.

My drive home was riddled with questions. Should I take it back? Should I tell the doctor to just burn it off and be done with it? Should I succumb to a life time of duct tape and/or garlic? No, I decided I'd use the prescription and hope it worked quickly enough that I didn't need a refill. I also learned a lesson. Something may not require physical pain, but it can be far from painless.

Monday, August 3, 2009

I found it--the egg scene

You really have to watch this. Mormon or not, it will make you laugh.