Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Time Well Spent

Motherhood Maternity?  Oh, Come On!
After Aeify and I left Liz and the museum, we headed over to the Tucson Mall.  The mall wasn't anything special ~ it had the usual chains with the usual stuff.  We didn't really look at clothes, which is definitely the first thing I look for at a mall, especially when dressed.  Second is probably jewelry, followed by shoes and cosmetics.

Instead we just... walked and talked.  We looked at some things, we went into a couple of stores but it was a walking-talking day.

I did my other favourite dressed thing: I forgot I was dressed.  I was Meg, hanging with her new girlfriend.  I didn't even think to ask Aeify to take a picture until we were ready to leave and would you look at the choice of store in the background!  That's one store I'll never shop at!

I was at peace.  I think Aeify was having a pretty good time too.

I thought it was... I'm missing a word here.  Not "odd" or "strange."  "Unexpected," yes, but that's not the word I want.  I'll try to explain.

When I said I was going out to Arizona and I'd get to spend one "Meg" day, Aeify said she wanted to come out too.  I could not imagine why.  She lost Penny less than two months earlier.  She wanted to go to Tucson, of all places, and spend a bit of treasure for a one-day trip.

But as we chatted I learned that the furthest she had been from home was Orlando, and that was the only time she had ever flown.  She wanted to do what I do as Meg: step outside her comfort zone.

The same way I always have "firsts" as Meg, she wanted some "firsts" as an adult on her own.

Then I understood.

Monday, January 30, 2012

I Just Have to Share

These are a few pictures from the raptor free flight at the Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum, as I wrote about yesterday.  There's no t-content except the photographer (me) was wearing a skirt and scoop-neck top and mid-heels.  Remember to click to enlarge!  My day in Tucson continues tomorrow.

I forgot to mention that last week's picture was taken in the Hummingbird aviary, another spectacular exhibit.  Most of us have rarely or never seen a hummingbird.  Here you can take a pleasant walk around while a dozen or more fly around you.

My favourite, the great horned owl

Sunday, January 29, 2012

Monty by Jim Meddick

The poll's still open but I think You Have Spoken.  Scroll back a few days to see the dresses.

The strip Monty was originally known as Robotman.  I didn't know the early history; I think I want to find some of those earlier strips and catch up.  I've been reading it for at least ten years ~ I started when it was called "Robotman and Monty."  In that time, they added a time traveler named "Doc" (the old man) and a robot called "EB-3" (the robot), who's the focus of this little sequence.   Monty's the other guy.  You can catch up with them right here.  Click to make each easy-to-read.  And it might help to know that EB is in love with Monty's vacuum cleaner and apparently has quite a thing for them.

I LOVE This One!

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Me! I'm Herman!

(Please vote in yesterday's poll, if you haven't yet.  I noticed you don't like the print dress, but I wonder if that's because of the poor picture.  A better one is here.)

Posted without comment. Click or it's wasted.

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Won't You Please, Please Help Me

I just found out that I'll be taking a quick trip to AZ again next week.  I hope to meet someone for dinner, and I want to visit Alice Rae's (and I bet Stana will love the picture on their home page!) if I can get there early enough.  I'm losing a day to training, so I may not be able to.

I will try to get to services again.  That was pleasant.

Earlier today, I had a chance to try on three possible dresses.  Please let me know which you like the best.  My apologies for the cel phone pictures.  I hate them, but time was limited.  It gave me two choices: grainy or a flash in the middle of the photo.  I took the best of a poor few.

Please vote for your favourite in the little poll to the right.

The Black-and-white and block print are both poly with a bit of spandex so they're light and stretchy.  The purple is heavier, and has a short zip in the back.  It's all solid except for the sleeve detail.

I'll wrap up my last trip to AZ next week, just in time for my next trip!

Update: Ten votes in.  I don't want to influence anyone, but last time I wore a different black-and-white to the same place.  If y'all think that's cool, keep on voting for it!

I'm Stunned

The Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum is stunning.  Even the drive is spectacular.  Aeify, who has never been to this part of the country, was suitably impressed.  When she came to DC, she told me about every plant in front of every house and on every street.  Here, she couldn't identify a single one and it really threw her.

Liz led us into the museum and we wandered a bit, looking at big cats and other native specimens as we walked towards the raptor free-flight which would begin at 10.

I had the same shoes I wore last time when we went to the Pima air museum.  They're amazingly comfortable, but walking over stones and such they were a bit less so.  I felt comfortable in my top and skirt, and enjoyed the tour and the company.
Aeify, Liz, and some guy in a skirt

When I was here in June, I praised the museum and it turns out I had missed the best exhibit.

(Keep in mind, when I say "exhibit" I don't mean a stuffed animal in a setting.  This is a living museum.  The big cats, the bears, the prarie dogs and so on are all live exhibits.  Believe it or not, the most fake thing about the museum is the rocks.  They make them themselves.)

(While I'm doing asides, you know how authors will say someone "squealed with delight" but no-one ever really does that?  When the prarie dog hills popped into view, Aeify literally squealed with delight.)

At 10 and 2 each day ~ Liz will correct me if it's not ~ they have a trainer talk to the crowd as they allow some of the birds of prey to fly free for a little bit.  The trainers have done their job: the birds do return.

While out, they fly back and forth practically touching the heads of the visitors.  One thing I've always found sad about zoos is, no matter how big the enclosures are the raptors can't really fly, and they need to.  Even my little cockatiel will beat his wings furiously a couple of times a day if she isn't let out of her cage.

They bill it as a raptor free-flight, but the first birds out were ravens ~ predators but not raptors.  It didn't matter.  It was spectacular, and I saw an owl in flight for the very first time.  It was worth the trip.  In fact, if you ever find yourself within a few hundred miles of Tucson, go out of your way to see this!

Liz spoke to Larisa, the trainer, after the flight was over.  She introduced us and asked if we could go and see the back room where they have some of the other birds.  She readily agreed, and we met a scarlet macaw, and several other raptors.  We each got to pet the barn owl (named Ty) and chat with some of the people working there.  Larisa and Ty are in the picture from last Friday.

We saw incredible plants, amazing animals, and chatted together all morning.  Alas, I didn't see anything jump out at me in the gift shop, but shopping without buying is nice too.

Liz would meet us for dinner later, but we let her go salvage some of her Saturday and Aeify and I went to do a little window shopping at a mall.

Just the one picture of the ladies I was with and some random stranger.  Apparently, utilikilts are big in Tucson.  Click to see the big picture.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

I Like Breakfast at Todd's

The half-hour or so drive to Todd's was unevenful and scenic.  Aeify enjoyed seeing new plants, architecture, roads.  I did too.  I wondered if one cactus evolved spikes and the other plants said "hey!  We better do that too or we're gonna get et!"

We pulled into the parking lot just ahead of Liz and we all had a nice breakfast.  The restaurant wasn't crowded.  Some small planes landed at the tiny airport right outside and the passengers and crew came in to eat.  (Pssst... order some bread so you can try the prickly pear jelly.)

The meal was totally uneventful, which is a good thing.  We were just three ladies having breakfast and I wasn't sure which made my smile broader: that the people around us treated us as three women, or that my two companions accepted me as one of them.  It doesn't matter ~ if they enjoyed breakfast, I savored every second.  Time spent with the ladies is heaven.  And Liz and Aeify are wonderful company.

My order was taken, I was served, I was asked if I wanted more coffee.  I paid the bill.  I was accepted as what I appeared, what I wanted to be that day.  It's an incomparable feeling, and readers who've been out know what I mean.  I hope the rest of you get to know it some day soon.

The drive to the Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum (Liz corrected me on the name) is pretty straight-forward.  Go down one street, turn left, go down that street.  Liz wanted to take the more scenic route so we followed her.  We followed her past rows of fifteen foot Saguaro cactus: some were straight stalks, some had two or four or more arms, looking like a Vishnu or Kali or Shiva turned to vegetation.  There were clumps of prickly pear cactus near the side of the road, and countless barrel cactus scattered among various tough-skinned desert plants.  Other than a hawk or two we didn't see any animal life, but we saw plenty of that later in the day.

It was already a great day, and it was just starting.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Making Up

Saturday morning, I planned to take Aeify to Liz's favourite breakfast place where we'd all meet up and then head to the Sonora Desert Museum, my favourite place in Tucson.

After I showered and put on my cover stick and foundation (and clothes!), I called Aeify and asked her to come down and do my eyes.

I've had a few women do my makeup before, and there's always a problem.  The same problem.  They want to do something "subtle," like most women would like.  I need a plasterer.  Many of us do.  I'd love to learn how to do more contouring with blush and bronzer and powder.  I'd like to try to minimise my nose and change the shape of my face somewhat.  Teddy, who did my makeup twice, was a whiz at this.  I'd look in the mirror after she did my makeup and I'd see an almost-pretty stranger looking back.

Aeify has some experience with girls like me.  She had a little heavier hand, and she knew what she was doing.  She had a palette for blue eyes which she left for me as a gift.  My eyes looked great when she was done.  She used a lighter eyeliner than I do, and used less.  The shadow colours looked superb.  And, idiot that I am, I didn't think to get a closeup of my eyes.  As I said, I hardly have any pictures from Saturday.

She did my blush as well, and used a light hand because she said she usually uses too much.

Shhh....  Don't tell her, but I added a coat of mascara and a little more blush, because, well, I like a bit more colour (since I put powder over my face) and I love mascara.

I did my lips in the same combinaation of colour and gloss as the night before, put on my wig and shoes and we were off with about fifteen minutes to spare.

Monday, January 23, 2012

What Was I Thinking?

The drive back to the hotel was much better than the drive to the synagogue.  The road does some funky things, but it was pretty easy.  Although I'm starting to know my way around Tucson a bit, I did follow the GPS when it told me to turn off of Valencia, even though I knew it's only one more turn to the hotel.  The GPS way would mean I end up on the right side of the road, instead of a weird sort of u-turn, which I prefer.

Instead it put me onto two unfamiliar and completely unlit roads.  I think the lady in the GPS is jealous because I look so fine and she's just a little square box. :D

I stopped in my room for a moment, and made sure Aeify was in the hotel and ready to go.

She was overdressed for dinner as well ~ she did that deliberately, knowing that t-girls often overdress.  That was a pleasant surprise.

We had a nice chat on the way to the restaurant.  Actually we had a long chat ~ I was sure I knew which street the restaurant was on, but I was wrong.  We had to drive around a bit until I finally found it.

I had been to this steakhouse once before, and had a good meal (in drab).

Aeify and I were treated like girlfriends.  Someone was asked to show "these ladies" to their table, and "ladies" was the word of the night when they were addressing us.

The second pleasant surprise was when a random waitress came over to our table.  She looked at us and said how nice we looked and asked if we were going out. I gave her an expansive hand motion and said "we're here."  Then she said we should definitely go out.

I don't know if she was trying to see if we were what we appeared to be.  I really don't care.  What I DO care about is, I didn't think to pick up my camera at the room and ask this nice waitress if she'd take a picture of us.  In fact, I kind of forgot about pictures this trip.  I took a lot of animal shots at the museum, but I didn't get many of Meg or Aeify or Liz or Andrea or Dorothy or all of us together, except for some posed restaurant shots.  I think I was just enjoying being a girl too much to think about it.

I also think it's too soon to be too relaxed.  I need to pay more attention to how I move and how I speak and how I react and I think I'm letting that go somewhat.  I have to remember not to do that!  And I have to remember to bring my camera and ask for pictures.

Dinner was uneventful.  Families and couples sat nearby and I looked at them more than they looked at us.  Aeify had the country fried steak, I had the fish and chips (at a steakhouse?  What was I thinking?).  The dinner portions were huge, and we both left most of our dinner.  I'm not sure if I left mine because I was in "girl mode" (I did eat my salad!) or because I was too busy chatting with Aeify.  The waitress never slipped; there was no difference between Aeify and me as far as she was concerned.  ("Did you ladies leave room for dessert?")

It was late when we got back to the hotel and we went to our respective rooms, but Aeify promised to help me with my makeup the next morning.  Saturday was to be breakfast, the Sonora Desert Museum, a little shopping, and dinner with the girls and I could hardly wait!

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Altogether Ooky

There might be some people out there who don't know Charles Addams.  He used to do cartoons for The New Yorker, and the old 60s show "The Addams Family" was based on his characters.  The tv family looked remarkably like the family he drew.

The writers were clearly fans.  There was a single cartoon of a disembodied hand ~ I think it was delivering mail to the Morticia character who was saying "Thank you, Thing."  That became a recurring character in the show.

Another had her introducing a hairy midget with a hat and glasses with "This is my cousin Itt."

These are a few cartoons I picked off the internet ~ I didn't have time to scan anything from the many books I own.  Fortunately, there are a few choice cartoons out there.

The first is the quintessential Addams.  The second is one of my favourites; he also did an opposite cartoon with everyone laughing and one man crying.  He liked crowds: one cartoon featured a horse race and a crowd of kings watching it.

I had a Christmas card with number three on it.  I also had one with the family sitting around and Morticia saying "suddenly, I have a dreadful urge to be merry."

The last cartoon always makes me laugh.  I hope they make you laugh too.  Buy a book and laugh some more.  There are lots of used editions out there.

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Don't Forget the Bra!

Sorry McPherson.  You've been in The Post for a long time and I have yet to see one funny strip.  The only reason you made the blog is the little t-connection.

I hate it when a newspaper wastes valuable comic page real estate with something like this.

Friday, January 20, 2012

OK, I Screwed Up

This post was supposed to appear yesterday, and this one today.  I haven't blogged the rest of my weekend so right now... I got nothin'.

Please read both in order.  I'll leave you with a picture of Aeify petting a barn owl (honest!).  That's me, looking on.

Thursday, January 19, 2012

"Gee, You Have Lovely Eyes"

Note: this was supposed to post tomorrow, and I put in the wrong date.  Oh well....
I followed the sound of singing until I found the sanctuary. By the door a man was handing out spiral bound books that were the synagogue's own prayer book. I took one, thanked him, and looked inside the room. There were a couple of hundred people in folding chairs, a small dais for the clergy, and a choir at the far left (that's another difference ~ reform may have a choir; the other flavours of Judaism do not). I peered around and saw a few scattered empty seats but there were two mostly empty rows in the back at the far side of the sanctuary. I asked the man if there was another entrance there; he said yes and I walked out and across the building so I wouldn't disturb the people inside. The penultimate row had a gentleman of about 70 sitting alone near the end of the row. I sat in the last (empty) row right behind him.

I arrived right before V'Shamru, a prayer I like. The tune was the same as back home, and I joined in (quietly).

I noticed a couple of women in the choir looking at me and smiling. My first thought was: "read. I was right. Something's off."

But I also looked around the room. Unexpectedly, I was overdressed. There were lots of women in pants; the men mostly wore open collars; ties were rare, jackets rarer. Plus, as the service went on I realised the members knew each other, for the most part. I was unfamiliar and overdressed. My confidence level went up.

The first big surprise was the healing prayer. The tune was familiar; there was an extra bit but it was all in the prayer book. That was good. But the rabbi said we should all hold hands. This was new and unexpected.

I stepped forward so I was standing next to the man in front of me and took his hand. I dropped my prayer book into an empty seat in front of me so I could see the words, which was good because of that extra bit. I was now standing pretty close to the choir and as I looked up, two women who were holding hands raised their joined hands toward me and I put my free hand on theirs.

This was nice. This was very nice. Yes, I'd prefer to hold women's hands only, but even if I was in drab I'd be holding the gentleman's hand, so... so what. And here I was, dressed, and just another congregant. I was in heaven, if I can use that phrase in this setting. :)

After the prayer the man turned to me and said "your hands are awfully cold." I smiled and said "it's pretty cold out there." It was getting colder, and the door behind me was open.  Actually, my hands and feet are always cold but I wasn't going to get into that. I need to embrace my role more. If I was my male self and a female friend commented on my cold hands I probably would take the coldest side of my coldest hand and touch it to her face or neck or arm or some other exposed sensitive spot. Here, roles were reversed ~ I should have done the same thing to him. The worst that could happen is he'd pull back, but I guess I was passing so why not?

The sermon convinced me I was there for the wrong week. He was pushing an upcoming congregational meeting and asking members what they liked best, or didn't like, or what should be done differently. I yawned through his talk.

At the end they threw two more curves: the rabbi asked first time visitors to stand up and introduce themselves. I did not.  Three other people did. Maybe next time, I will raise my voice.

One more final prayer and we were done ~ almost. Another tradition with a twist.  They say a prayer over bread.  That's normal but here while someone says the prayer over the bread one person touches the bread and everyone one else has to be touching someone who's touching someone who's... eventually touching the bread person.

As I stood up, my new friend turned to me and said, "gee. You have lovely eyes."

If the holding hands was nice, this was wonderful. I never felt more like a woman than I did at that moment. I was glad I didn't raise my voice earlier; I might have spoiled the illusion and lost that moment.

I gave him a huge smile, and I thanked him. I almost felt like I was blushing. I realised that, while I was looking at the dais and my book, he was looking at me!

I think he was embarrassed by his comment. As I was trying to figure out what to do next he turned to me again and said, "I'm sorry. My wife had blue eyes and..." I smiled and cut him off and said "it's all right. Thank you." and I continued heading for the door. I should have done something more ~ maybe put my hand on his arm as I spoke ~ but I didn't. Again, I need to embrace the role.

I walked along the back until I was close to someone touching someone touching someone touching... you get the idea. I was part of the chain now. I put my hand on the shoulder of the woman in front of me and she gave me a big smile. I smiled back, but I didn't speak to anyone except to say "excuse me" and make my way towards the doors.

I was one of the first people out; I didn't want to explain why I was skipping the oneg, even though I had a ready and honest response. I didn't want to get into a "come in for just a minute" because I'd find it rude to refuse and Aeify would be waiting.

I walked back to my car. There was an older couple in front of me; it turned out their car was parked right by mine and they weren't sticking around for nosh either. They were talking but at one point they turned around to see who's heels were clacking along behind them. We didn't exchange words and it was pretty dark. I pass best in the dark.

That man in front of me doesn't know it, but he made this my best solo outing ever!

Or What?

So it's Friday night and I'm in a strange town and I'm looking for a dressy Meg activity.

I can dress like I just got off work and stop at the mall ~ that's always a possibility, but I don't really need to mingle with the teens who are hanging at the mall.

I could do dinner, but my plans were for a later dinner with Aeify (her blog is here) when she arrives.

So I checked the local synagogues.  I go to services occasionally, more often when my boys were younger than now; this year, I haven't been since October.

For those unfamiliar, there are three main branches of Judaism:

* Orthodox, where men and women sit separately and there are three services a day.  I wasn't sure where I'd sit so that's out.
* Conservative, which is more egalitarian but they usually focus on the Saturday morning service.  This is where I grew up.
* Reform, which I usually attend.  There's more of a Hebrew/English mix and the tunes would be more familiar to me.  Friday night is the big service of the week, with Saturday morning a close second.
* (and Reconstructionist, which is more fringe and I've never been)

So I looked for reform synagogues and found Or Chadash, which billed itself as "A warm and welcoming community where all can experience God."  I looked at their calendar and found a discrepancy so I sent an e-mail asking which time was right.  The woman who wrote back said I'd be "welcome at any service" and told me the main service starts at 6:30.

It was also the closest to my hotel, a plus for me.  Google maps said it was about 20 minutes away.  It looked pretty straightforward: turn right, turn left and that's the road it's on.

I got out of work a bit later than I wanted and people were still trying to get last minute advice.  My 2:00 leave turned into 2:25 and I headed for Tucson.

Andrea was off; there were a couple of guys behind the desk.  I checked in, carrying three bags: computer, suitcase, and a smaller bag with Meg stuff.  Not all of Meg's stuff, but the bag was crammed,

Earlier in the week I did a dry run.  I tried my makeup and decided I didn't like either mascara so I bought a new one.  I tried an eyeshadow that looked too dark so I switched to a lighter blue for my lids.  I tried each of the lipsticks and glosses and found a combination I liked (but didn't love).  I tried different jewelry combinations until I found the one I like best.  I wanted to video chat with a friend or two, but the wifi at this hotel is pathetic.  Regular web pages would time out.  I passed on that potential frustration.

So I had sorted everything I was going to wear and put the makeup and jewelry together with undergarments and such in that bulging bag.

I was at the hotel with plenty of time for a leisurely shower and thorough shave and to correct any mistakes I might make while doing my face.  I didn't do anything that needed repair, but I wasn't really thrilled with the final product.  Something didn't look quite right to my eyes.

I wanted to leave at 6.  Any earlier and I'd have too much time before the service started.  The time before Jewish services is a social time, and although meeting people is bothering me less, I didn't want to be the only person who knew no-one and I'd be staring at my hands.  I didn't want to be late, but if I had to sit in the car for a couple of minutes to be just about on time, that would be OK.  Since the ride was straightforward and google said 20 minutes, I figure a couple of minutes after six would be fine.

As I said, google said it was a straightforward trip.  My GPS had other ideas.

It said it was a 30 minute drive, not 20, said the GPS.  OK, I did leave at 6 and I'd be about on time, even if google was wrong.  No worries.

As I drove down Alvernon, the long street that the synagogue was on, my GPS decided I needed to turn, that Alvernon did not continue.  I dutifully (stupidly) turned.

It had me make a couple of more turns, then wanted me to go onto a street clearly labelled "No Outlet."  I declined, and turned in what I thought was the right direction to rejoin Alvernon.

When I finally caught up with it, I ignored the lady's voice and just kept driving.  The GPS started showing no road, only green fields and she was silent.

Eventually, I was back on what the device thought was a road.  It told me to turn and I did not ~ no fooling me again!  Alas, now I was on a different road: Alvernon made a right turn and continued.  I went back past the turn and back again before I did make that turn.  Alvernon fooled me once more with another left and I went past it, turned around and went back.

I considered taking this as a sign and giving up... that's the funny thing about signs.  I was very late, but was it a sign that I should go home, or maybe I was supposed to avoid a problem at the start of the service, or maybe it was a test to see how committed I was to going to services that night.  Or maybe no-one was paying attention and I just went on aimlessly.  Or everyone was paying attention and they had bets on how late I'd be.

By the way, driving an hour in high-heels isn't bad at all.  Getting up is, since it puts more strain on your calf muscles as you're pressing the pedals and your foot has to straighten more.  I had an uncomfortable few steps until my legs settled down.

Or Chadash is a campus of several connected or nearly connected buildings.  I parked at the closest spot to the entrance where I saw cars, which meant it was furthest from where I wanted to be.

It was dark, but not yet cold.  I didn't have a coat but I felt fine.  My heels seemed to make a LOT of noise on the sidewalk and I walked past the office which was well lit and occupied and I'm sure people inside were wondering why some woman (hey, I was far away and it was dark) was walking to the services a half-hour late.

Oh... typical Friday night services are 60-90 minutes with an "oneg" afterwards: wine, bread, other assorted fruits, cake, cookies, coffee.  So I missed somewhere between a third and a half of the service.  And I planned to skip the Oneg ~ Aeify would be waiting.

This is getting kind of long, so I'll finish this up tomorrow.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Picture Only

I'll have time to write today, but for now a shot of temple-ready Meg.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

I Know What You Did Last Weekend

This is just a "Oh My God! I ran out of time unpacking, running around, getting my expense report ready" preview of Tucson.

Friday night, I put on the dress I packed and went to services at a local reform synagogue. I then went back to the hotel where I went dinner with Aeify, who flew in from Memphis to get away from the place for a tiny bit.

Saturday morning, I put on a more casual top and skirt and went to breakfast with Aeify and Liz. Liz (Sonora Sage) showed us around the Sonora Desert Museum, including the raptor free flight, which was incredible, but hopefully not indescribable.

Aeify and I headed over to the Tucson mall to do a little window shopping before going to a Chinese restaurant with Liz, Andrea, and Dorothy.

All of the players were mentioned in previous posts, but I'll point you at them or remind you as I write about a wonderful weekend over the next few days.

There Will Be Pictures.

Monday, January 16, 2012

100% Truthful

This is an actual restroom conversation at work.

We had just come back from a meeting at the customer.  B, a customer-related contractor was being a major pain; this is normal but only peripheral to the topic.

Unexpectedly, J said "do you know what I hate?"  I said "B."  He said "besides that.  I hate it when I get dressed in the dark and put on my boxers backwards and don't realise it until I go to the bathroom at work."

I thought of a hundred things to say.  "I have to be careful with my panties because the back is always roomier than the front and it would be really uncomfortable."  Or "I just go over the top anyway."  Or "boxers?  I've never worn boxers.  Briefs, hipsters, bikini..."

But instead I said "I can honestly say that's never happened to me."

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Don't Watch!

Don't wear a watch when you're in drab.  You're going to have an untan mark where you used to wear your watch and no woman's watch is going to cover that.  You're going to need to wear one of those big wide clunky bracelets or long sleeves and often neither are appropriate.

Saturday, January 14, 2012

I Think I Know His Dad

This is from the strip One Big Happy.  It's a pretty funny strip and one that got a lot funnier once it was no longer in the Washington Post.  Lots of mediocre strips become funnier after the Post drops them.

The joke is old, but done well.  Remember to click to enlarge.

Friday, January 13, 2012

Friday and Saturday OUT

I'll be leaving Sierra Vista today around 2pm.  From there I'll drive up to Tucson and if all goes well, Meg will be out at 6pm.

I'm just going to tease this morning.

If all goes well, Friday I'll be doing something I've never done before and then going to dinner with someone very special.  She'll be with me until we head to our respective homes Sunday morning.

This requires me to get out of my office on time.  So far this week, that has not happened once.  Not even close.

Saturday, I'll be meeting a local lady for breakfast and some sightseeing.  I hope to have dinner with a crowd of ladies ~ I'm still trying to work out the details.

And please read next week....  I hope I'll have a lot to write about!

Since Sunday is a travel day, there may not be a Sunday morning post.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

I Brought WHAT?

I opened my little cosmetics bag last night, hoping to do a "dry run" for the weekend, or at least organise my choices.  Instead, big things are happening at work and the entire project is being thrown into chaos.  So I had homework.

But I did, as I said, open my little cosmetics bag to see what my choices were.

Did I ever mention that I overpack?

I have some bandaids for my li'l toes, which sometimes get blisters and really keep me from enjoying my Megtime.

I have a cover stick, and an eyeshadow primer, and some blush.

I have an eyelash curler and eyelash/eyebrow brush.  I don't see my other brushes!  Dam!  I may pick something up, or I may just make do.

I have a small scissor and special brush to help trim brows.  I also have a brow pencil and a lip liner and a sharpener and a lipstick brush.  I have an eyeliner pencil ~ two actually, because the one I usually use is getting short.

I have foundation and powder (both Clinique.  I think they're the best variety and value in any department store!).

I have makeup remover, and three different lip balms (I didn't notice!  Honest!)

I have two mascaras, by design.  I never know when one is going to be a bit old and cake or clump or be dry or run out so I take a second.  I also checked my foundation to make sure I had enough or I would have taken a second bottle.

(By the way, I tried both mascaras to see which I prefer ~ both have problems.  The top looks OK but not great and they both seem to clump on the bottom.  Back to the CVS or Dillards.)

Now it gets weird.

I have three lipsticks and five (!) lip glosses.

I have a purple eye shadow.  I have a buttercream eyeshadow.  I have a palette of four, two palettes of three, and a matched pair of palettes (3 colours).

Apparently, I don't make decisions as much as I defer them.

And while I'm at it....  Why the heck did I bring NINE pairs of earrings, a watch, a black bead necklace and FIVE matching bracelets, a "pearl" necklace and bracelet, a lapus necklace and bracelet, two other necklaces and two other bracelets, and exactly ONE RING (a fairly plain band)?

Part of the problem is, even though I take my time, I pack in haste.  I have to grab things while the family is otherwise occupied and I don't have time to see what I'm bringing, or to just lay everything out like I did just now to decide what goes with which outfits.  I'm tired of carrying excess items.  I'll try to use this as a "lesson learned" and next time put out each outfit and one, maybe two sets of jewelry that I think will complement it.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Tights or Pantyhose?

Can someone tell me what women are wearing?  I see a LOT of black-clad legs and I'm not sure if they're hose or tights.

I know if there are patterns, they're pretty much tights.  If they're odd colours, they're tights.

I'm guessing tights are "in" this season.

I need to know soon.  I'll be out and about Friday night and Saturday and I don't want to make a fashion faux pas.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Travel Day!

Yesterday, I flew out to Tucson again for a few days at Sierra Vista, AZ.  Before returning home, I'll spend a day in Tucson, yes, as Meg.  I have a couple of ideas, but I'm going to keep them to myself right now.

As usual, I not only overpacked for Meg, but I added some last-minute things as well.  To make room, I didn't bring regular camisoles for work, and I skipped one regular shirt.  I'll have to double up or buy a polo (women's?) shirt before I go home.  I also skipped on contact solution, shaving gel, and Nair.  I picked those things up in Arizona, and they'll stay here when I go home, unless I miraculously find room.

The last-minute extras included another lipgloss, some new eyeshadows, an eyeliner pencil (my old one was getting small), and my watch (yay!  I thought I misplaced it!)  This is on top of jewelry for at least three outings, lipsticks for at least four sets of lips, too much gloss, a variety of eye shadows, two pairs of shoes....  I think I need to have a locker here with an extra set of my clothes and stuff.  Maybe I can leave some things with a Tucson friend and pick everything up when I arrive here.

For one evening and one day, I have two skirts, two tops, and a dress.  Friday night, if all goes as planned, will be a dress event.  And I may check out the thrift and inexpensive clothing shops, looking for alternatives.  And maybe I'll check out Dillard's too.

I was a little nervous yesterday.  Not because I wore flowery socks, which I always do on travel days (hey, if I'm taking my shoes off I want my socks to look good!).  Not because I wore a lacy camisole under my (women's denim) shirt.

I've been wearing clear lip gloss.  Before I left the house, I put on a non-clear lip gloss.  MAC "Viva Glam V," which is close to my natural lip colour but definitely glossy.  Glossy glossy.  More glossy than what I've been wearing.  I figured, I'm on a plane with strangers.  I'm in an office I haven't been to in three months.  People will not even notice.  I checked in at my hotel before going to the office and touched up the gloss.  And I got nervous again.  I think I was nervous because I wasn't ready for what I was going to say:

major story: "It's a new chapstick thing.  I don't think I'll use THAT again!"
minor story: "Really?  Glossy?  Really?"
no story: "It's lipgloss.  I think it looks good."

I think I have to go with no story.  It's the only way I can look at myself in the mirror.  And admire my glossy lips.

By the way, nobody noticed.  So far.

I'm afraid I'm going to escalate this to the point where I'm coming to the office wearing fishnets under my pants, an unpadded bra, and lipstick, blush, and mascara.

That's a lie.  I'm not really afraid.  I'm just wondering where it's going to go from here.

Monday, January 9, 2012

Underdressing: Bad for the Environment!

I've been pushing the limit on underdressing for the past few weeks.  I think the poll results have inspired me.

As I've mentioned before, I always wear panties.  I've been wearing a camisole every day now, in a variety of styles.  Instead of the plain tank type I've been wearing more feminine styles, or "slimming" ones.

I've also tossed my women's socks, which is one of my visible-yet-underdressing items.  But instead, I've been wearing tights.  I had to purchase a couple of more pairs so I can have a week's worth.

Tights cause a little problem.

When I'm wearing tights and the camisole it's kind of imperative that I use a stall.  I really need to organise everything after I'm done with the bathroom.  I have to pull up my cami, so I can adjust the tights, which usually have a control top feature so they have to be just right or they're quite uncomfortable.  And I hate when the waistband rolls up!

And here's the problem: I get in the stall, get rid of my last cup of coffee, and the automatic toilet we have at work flushes.  And no matter how I stand, it decides it needs to acknowledge my feminine underwear by flushing again.  And then it flushes again when I'm ready to leave the stall!  I feel like I'm going to lose my conservation creds if I keep wasting water like that, but I don't want to give up my cd activities.

I can only think of one solution.

I need to figure out how to disable the auto feature.

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Warning! Rated R

This was published yesterday and I just had to share.

By the way, I'll be in Arizona next week which means some Meg time.  Stay tuned!

Saturday, January 7, 2012

There's Something About Ralph

Pulitzer prize winning artist Mike Peters has been producing Mother Goose and Grimm since 1984.  Peter's editorial cartoons are outstanding, and Grimm never gets old.  Yes there are books (and if you follow the magic link and buy anything on Amazon, I get a rupee).  And yes, I have a couple of badly dogeared (sorry) books.  I always mark the best cartoons.

Ralph, the pooch featured in these cartoons has done the dress-up bit before; he was in my blog once before.

This time, it looks like an excuse.  Which reminds me... I need to try to catch the bouquet at the next wedding.

I apologise for the captions.  My muse made me.

See?  He knew.  It was a plan to get into the dress.

Reminds me of my own wedding.

And he still fits into the dress!

Duh.  You look too eager.

There's Something About Mark Trail, Too!

Friday, January 6, 2012

And Another Tactcial Error

(update to yesterday: I didn't beep)

(dact [don't ask, can't tell] note: in the bathroom, one of my coworkers said "do you know what I hate?  I hate when I dress in the dark and I put on my boxers backwards and don't realise it until I go to the bathroom later."  All I could say was "that's never happened to me" instead of "I wear panties.  I know when they're on backwards because the roomy side is on the wrong side.  And I never worry about the fly.")

At night, I get my clothes for the next day and I hang them in the spare bedroom.  I used to hang them in the bathroom, but I share that with the boys and with the camisoles and tights I've been wearing....  Let's say it's better to keep everything out of sight.

Last night, I put aside a silky (well, polyester, the poor girl's silk) camisole with lace trim around the neck.  I put that on the hanger with my shirt.  I also pulled out plain black tights, which I stuff into my shirt sleeve.

I used to change in the bathroom but it's more comfortable to change on the bed in the guest room ~ it's easier to put on the hose.

Today, well, it's hard to tell, but I think I'm wearing black pantyhose instead of tights.  I have a hard time telling them apart sometimes, but they don't seem as opaque or heavy, and the panty part seems thinner.

Standing up in my hose, they definitely look more like hose than tights but I noticed something: the part around the ankle and bottom of the leg is more opaque than the rest of the leg or the foot itself.

It seems to me that that's the way it stretches and that works out great.  I don't expect a problem today and now I have more choices.  I do have to experiment though ~ I have some pretty sheer black hose.

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Tactical Error

I have to go to the customer today.  I don't like going partly because of traffic, partly because of security.  For a fifteen minute drive we need to allow 45 minutes so we can go through metal detectors and x-rays and sign in.  Computers have to be signed in separately.

Three facts:
1. If you set off the metal detector, they don't send you back through.  They wand you and check you head-to-toe, including having men pull their pants legs up to above the top of their socks.
2. I rarely set off metal detectors.  There's a trick, which I'm not at liberty to share.
3. Recently I've been wearing tights.

If I set of that alarm they're going to need me to raise my pants legs over my head.  I'll be with four or five co-workers.

I sure hope this doesn't make us late for the meeting!

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Stuff Happens...

...but whether it bothers one or not depends on how far you are on the "don't care" spectrum.

I've been wearing nice camisoles under my shirt for the past few weeks.  Normally, I wear a tank top under my shirt, or maybe something silky but in tank-top style so if it shows, it looks mostly normal.
But lately, I've been wearing newer, more opaque shirts and camisoles with thin adjustable straps in a variety of materials and colours and lacy flourishes.

A couple of Fridays ago, I was wearing a blue denim (women's) shirt with a pink lace camisole underneath.  One of the women in the office was behind me and she said "I think there's a hole in your shirt."  And she decided to manually check it out, trying to grab the material so she could see if it was, in fact, a hole.  It was actually a 7-shape cut, about 3/4 inch on each side and I was wondering if she'd see the cami underneath as I was saying "I believe you!  I'll check it later!"  It was low enough that, if my shirt was tucked in, it would have been hidden.  I prefer to leave casual shirts out.

If she did see it, she said nothing.

A few days later, I was walking out of the office, past the kitchen area.  My manager was talking to another techie and he was trying to make a point.  As I walked by, he said to me "isn't that right?"  Going along, I said "Absolutely.  I couldn't have said it better myself."  He laughed and put his hand on my back as I walked past.  Right on the adjuster on my camisole strap.

Again, if he felt something odd, he said nothing.  I almost hope there's some undercurrent about my underdressing.  I'd welcome coming out.

I think.

And in the self-immolation category, a friend started a political blog.  He's not getting a lot of eyes but he is getting a lot of spam comments.  I showed him how to limit that, and he did.

Then I posted a comment as "Meg."  He hasn't approved it, because he's not 100% sure it's legit.  He thinks there's some sort of spam comment he's still letting through.

I'm tempted to mention to my wife that he's being a dope, that I posted a comment under my "girl name" but this all falls under the Don't Ask, Can't Tell category.

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

What I Didn't Do

Blues for Challah.  As Meg.  It's a weekend Jewish workshop with a Grateful Dead twist.

I went to a Jewish meditation and Kabbalah-oriented workshop a number of years ago and had a good time and learned a lot.  I did not attend that weekend as Meg.

I seriously considered it.  I worked out the expenses so I could get a private room with a bath, and how to get up there via train or car.

I'm not a religious person; I'm more spiritual and this seemed to combine two things that would interest me:

- spirituality
- The Grateful Dead

I think I'm ready for a weekend.  I think I'd be OK talking to people and interacting as needed and I might even enjoy it more as Meg.  Plus, everyone I talk to would have two things in common: the religion and the music.

But in the end, there were too many problems.  My work responsibilities have changed and I need to get some reports out now ~ reports that are due at the end of the week and must contain up-to-the-minute information.  Taking off Friday would be difficult.

Plus, it's a long trip.  I thought it was in the Pennsylvania Berkshires, but it's in Connecticut.  It would be about a six hour drive, or a long DC-to-New York train, plus another train to CT, plus an hour or so cab ride.

And it would be cold.  Meg's wardrobe isn't very cold-weather friendly.  I don't even own a coat, and I don't want one.  My closet it quite full already and coats take a LOT of room.

So, in the end, there were too many excuses.

Yes, I know I changed a word.  No, I'm not sure which word is correct.