Saturday, July 30, 2005

Interviewed again

I figured I would have someone ask me five random questions who didn't know me as well as Os does. Since Jason answered some on his site I have asked him to line me up with a few. Here they are.

~JaSoN~ said...
K, Moose. Here goes!

1.) You've been given the power to do really life changing thing. What would you change, and why?

That's a tough one. With everything going on with my mom right now, I think the first thing that I would say off the top of my head would be to end cancer. But, there are people who have had cancer and have cancer that do amazing things. Look at Lance Armstrong, he's as arrogant as hell but damn, he beat cancer with brain metatasis and won 7 tours!

I'm really passionate about sick kids. Not kids with colds and such, but kids that were born sick or developed illness or deformities as a child. I use to work a great deal with athletes. Big strong, massive football players to be exact. They whined and complained worse than anyone I have ever heard. And they weren't even elite level athletes. On the flip side I have worked with kids with skeletal deformities who with all of their 2.5 foot tall crooked self argued with the doctors about whether or not they needed yet another surgery because as far as they knew they were "perfect". Because they were very young, most of these kids believe they are the normal ones and that all those kids that can run, jump, or have hair are abnormal. These kids have amazing personalities and personal strength that is immeasurable.

If I had life changing powers, I wouldn't take away their disease. I would pass on their strength and will to those that whine and complain about inconsequential things in their lives, giving them the insight to see what is truly important...smiling, laughing, being an individual.

2.) Where would be your ideal place to live if you had to pick one place to stay forever?

I would live in Glacier National Park. There are a few old outstations that use to be chalets back in the early days of the park. You can ride a horse back in there, some of them even still have plumbing. I would stay year round. If not one of the chalets, than somewhere along the avalanche gorge area or up the creek at The Loop in the park. Imagine the greenest green you have ever seen, icy cold clear waters, grizzly bears, moose, mountain goats and sheep, the freshest air imaginable, and the view....breathtaking!

3.) You've just robbed a bank, and are in no danger of ever getting caught. What would you do with all $1.5 million you just stole?

Give most of it away. I would take a bit and invest, live off the interest and go to places like New Zealand for a hiking trip, build my house in Glacier Park. Donate the majority to places like the Shriner's, Make A Wish, Habitat for Humanity, and Carroll College (my almater). Build my parents a house, keep going to school. That's a lot of dough, just the interest in the right accounts would make myself and lots of organizations comfortable.

4.) How would you describe peace to someone that had never experienced it before?

I'm going to go with the angle of inner peace, personal peace, not sure if I could even touch something like world peace because if you look through history I don't think such a thing has ever existed. True peace is something you don't expect to find, you can't go looking for it. It is also a process, it doesn't happen at once. Peace comes from a multifactorial individual. One has to be confidant with one's self, one's surroundings, and the choice's one makes. I wouldn't call it a clear conscience because I think there are unpeaceful things that occur in one's life that can have a strong influence on one finding peace. Peace often comes from times of extreme trouble, emotional pain but also from triumph, accomplishment. It is a comfort level which comes from within. You know you have found it because there is a "click", it just becomes.

5.) If you had to go without one of your senses for a week, which one would you choose? What if it were for longer than a week?

I think I would have to say sight for both...if only for a week, or forever. I'm a very "hearing" and "tasting" person. Sounds can trigger a lot of emotions for me. Music, the sound of my favorite stream, a thunderstorm...all can cause very powerful physical reactions to me. If I lost my sense of smell or taste I would be very miserable. I take great pleasure in food and in the smell of being. The smell of the house I grew up in, the taste of grandma's beef barley stew. I wouldn't want to not be able to experience that again. The smell of my boyfriend or the smell of my work, those are all important things to me. As an individual that already has sight and has many many wonderful life experiences, I think I could rely on my mind's eye to create imagine in my head. Does that make sense?

Friday, July 29, 2005

I hate cancer

With all the talk of writing about something "important" in bloggerworld, I'll write about my current tears as I type this. It isn't a social issue, won't make world headlines and sure is a far way from political but it's important. I just found out my mom is going to have to start chemo for the third time since February of 01. Third time her hair will fall out, third time she will have to drive 120 miles one way to have the poison pumped into her system, third time we will keep the nasty never ending replicating cancer cells at bay. For what keep her alive.

I work in the medical field. It was my choice. Only thing I ever wanted to do. I work at the world's premier medical center. Big fat fucking deal! I can't keep my mom from slowly being killed by a cancer that should have been diagnosed years before it was. I have no control over the inferior doctor who ignored every one of her complaints for a year, did less than adequate exams and then documented "normal findings" prior to her being admitted five days later into the hospital in Feb of 2001 only to have half of her insides cut out two days later with late stage ovarian cancer growing in all these nooks and crannies. I have no control over the slow painful consequences of the disease. I can't make it go away, I couldn't have prevented it. I could bring her here to Mayo to the best doctor's in the world (or so they say). Would it make a difference? Who knows, she wants to stay at home.

Now, the kicker. She is one strong woman. Three rounds of chemo, excruciating back and shoulder pain from the chemo only accelerating arthritis, kidney stents that repeating get blocked, never ending fatigue. You know what she does for a living? She's a farmer. Technically, she is schooled as a nurse. She said the hell with that not long after she started working as a nurse and now does the one thing she always wanted to do. Have a farm. So after 4.5 years of battling this always fatal cancer, she spends her days out on the tractor stacking bales, swathing hay, checking the calves in the winter. In between she cooks/cater for local events, makes amazing wedding cakes. Why? Because if she sits on her keester and does nothing she hurts everywhere. If she is busy and does what she loves, she hurts everywhere but at least she is doing something. God Damn the fucking cancer! I'm a left wing catholic to the core and I talk to God in one way or the other multiple times a day but nothing can stop me from hating what this disease is doing to one amazing, strong, much too young to be facing what she is facing woman that I call Mom.

Yes, we are all dying. We could all be hit by a bus or have the earth implode and the entire human race disappear. Death is inevitable. There is even what people call "natural death". We get old, our bodies wear out, and we die. There is also "unnatural death". A death which is still inevitable but follows a path of sickness and pain. It strikes the young, the middle age, and the old. that is a death I would never wish upon my worst enemy. But, that is what is happening to my mom. And to think there are people who shrug their shoulders at that and say, "well, every one dies". That doesn't make the emotional and physical pain of an unnatural death easier.

So, I'm going home in 10 days or so to spend five days at home. I had planned to eat homemade molasses cookies, mom's potato salad and buns and vegg. I'm still going to do that. Only now mom will be two days out from starting her third round of chemo therapy. if you believe in prayer, say one please. I'm going to try to enjoy my time back in SD with my family, ignoring the little black cloud that wants to just hover over a farm in the middle of nowhere.

Thursday, July 28, 2005

Half Nekkid---Post Hottub

I'm house sitting for the week. Long story to that but there is a perk, the owners have a hottub which Dave and I are taking advantage of. last night after volleyball we soaked for about 40 minutes and I had him shoot this picture when we got out. This is the most flesh I've showed thus far for this event, we will see how it goes and see how the rest of the week house sitting goes as I'm sure we will be out in the tub a few times this weekend yet too. Enjoy!

Sunday, July 24, 2005

White trash, red neck street fest

Now, with that heading one would think I had headed back to Montana. Nope. I found the stereotypical street debauchery of the white trash, red neck world in the striving metropolis of Hayfield, Minnesota last night. Of course, I felt pretty much right at home. The guys, on the other hand, were quite entertained. I think by night's end, they were digressing to some level of white trashiness themselves :)

Hayfield has it's own high school but I wouldn't call it big at all. It sits in the middle of a few cornfields. They block off a couple of blocks of street between the Legion Bar and another bar across the street. Buy a button and you can come and go throughout the night. Buy an arm's length of beer tickets for $20. Feast on pulled pork sandwiches, deep fat fried cheese curds, nachos, and really cheap nasty Budweiser. Add too the mix a line of port-o-potties, every cop in the country, and a country band (whose sound guy was from Missoula, MT and their bass player from Odessa, TX, home of the Friday Night Lights football story). You have all the makings for a truly hot summer night (nevermind, the 100 degree heat index due to the high temps and high humidity).

We have video of some guy in scary boxers and a tank dancing to his own tune in his head, even when no one else was dancing. The cowboy with the cutting-the-circulation-off-in-my-balls-tight jeans and the walmart white wife-beater tank with an 18 inch waist "cuddling" with a 250 lb woman with rolls all over and not enough clothes to cover them. There was the biker chic clad in head to toe leather that with one glance was dancing with her equally leather clad biker boy with his huge knife sheathed on his back hip, and at another glance the same leather clad biker chic was grinding with another gal rigged out in plain jean shorts and a tank. The band played all the top country songs, and yes, I knew the words to every one to the amazement of my male companions. They threw in a few of their originals too. They wouldn't be anything to write home about, if you didn't know the lyrics you couldn't understand all of them, but they did the job.

By the time the night was over, Dave and I had danced to a few. Got Tim to dance a jig or two as well. All of us consumed a fine amount of beer, with the exception of our driver. We laughed a ton at those around us. Met a really really tall man whose shirt read "screw me, I'm german", tried to recruit him for ultimate frisbee but he said volleyball was his game. Drove home with the windows and sunroof wide open to air out the smell of BO emanating from us so freely. got home and crashed around 2 am!

No offense to anyone with this post. It is just the way it is. I grew up with it, I still revel in returning to it, and last night had a blast watching the guys revel at the crowd with me. And to let loose and know that not one single person there cares what they look like, let alone what you look like makes it so much easier to have a great time. Yee-haw!

Wednesday, July 20, 2005

It's NEKKID Time!

This picture was specifically taken on my Montana trip in anticipation of today. What more would you expect in Montana than a denim skirt (hiked for the picture), a blanket, and rodeo arena dirt? If you look closely my right knee looks shiny. That's the cellophane like dressing keeping my roadrashed knee from getting all nasty. Two and a half weeks later and it's still oozing.

Tuesday, July 19, 2005

Questions from Os

Os hooked me up with this little game. Here are the rules and my answers to his five questions.

1. If you want to participate, leave a comment below saying "interview me."
2. I will respond by asking you five questions -- each person's will be different.
3. You will update your blog with the answers to the questions.
4. You will include this explanation and an offer to interview others in the same post.
5. When others comment asking to be interviewed, you will ask them five questions.

1) What's up with the whole "moose" thing?

My grandmother is from Maine. When I was a kid I got to travel everywhere with Grandma and Grandpa during the summer. I would go to Aunt Brenda's with them, to Nebraska, their doctor's appts, you name it. The only trip I never got to take with them was to Grandma's home state of Maine because they always went in the fall and Mom and Dad wouldn't let me skip school. So I always asked grandma to bring me something with a moose on it.

Then I moved to Montana where there are real moose. (South Dakota doesn't have them!) My college friends found out I liked moose and started giving me more and more stuff. I also created my first email account then and used my maiden name which was pronounced "call" so my email read "moose call". My roommate had a thing for collecting cows and had a cow related nickname. our next door neighbor roared through the outlet between our rooms one night when we were watching "Ghost in the Darkness" scaring the shit out of us and she got stuck with a lion nickname. The names stuck and my moose collection has grown. My boyfriend in college came up with the Moosekiss. Added that to my license plates.

That's pretty much the story. I like it. They are sort of awkward looking creatures with those spindly legs and huge heads but can be very graceful when on the move. Sort of like me. I have awkward days often but when I try I can pull it off pretty well.

2) Thongs. Yes or no? Why? No, really. Why?

Yes, not as often as I use to though. And believe it or not, they are actually fairly comfortable. No real reason why, more of a just because. Also with all the dress pants I wear to work, thongs eliminate the panty line issue. Nothing worse than looking like you have four butt cheeks because of ill placed panty lines.

3) Your unknown weird uncle Jerome has died and left you a fortune in his will. You have the option of, a) receiving, tax-free, $500K per year, as well as $50M being donated to the American Cancer Society every year, but you will never be allowed to cross the border into Montana ever again, OR b) the same $50M will be given to Muslim terrorist groups, you'll receive a modest, but comfortable allowance, but you will be forced to never LEAVE Montana. What would you do?

If Uncle Jerome wasreally as weird as I'm assuming you are suggesting, not quite sure he is really family anyway, never bothered to talk to me when he was alive, I would thumb my nose at his money and tell his lawyers to keep it.

4) You're about to be executed for some really nasty crimes. What would you order for your final meal?

Cool, did I do something fun at least? Seriously...I would want a York burger with mushrooms and swiss, my mom's buns and potato salad, a lb of king crab legs, bread pudding made my the old cooks from when I was a kid smeared with peanut butter, mom's molasses cookies and a mint mocha from the Morning Light. Probably a keg of Beltian White to wash it all down and numb the anxiety of that whole needle bit to follow.

5) Have you had sex in every room of your home (incl. garage and kitties' bathroom!)?

Not yet (wink, wink)

Monday, July 18, 2005

Montana Friends

Those big blue eyes on that little girl with all the thick hair belong to 6 month old Kalley. She is the first daughter of my friends Chris and Kayme from college. Little Kalley is currently going through a touch of stranger anxiety but we hung out over breakfast at the Bagel Company on Tuesday morning.

This is Tyler, Alyssa's little brother. He was a complete cuddle bug during the night. Poor little guy had just gotten over the chicken pox so he was a bit spotty and the bugs seemed to like nibbling on his soft skin too. I was happy with lots of slobbery kisses from him

This little cutey is Alyssa. I babysat her while I was waiting to hear about PA jobs. She was just little than. Now she is a very grown-up 2 year old, who is quite fiesty! After eating her York Bar Grilled Cheese she got to have a nice purple sucker!

This is Os and Just.A.Girl at the Brewhouse in Helena the night we went to the Mission Mountain Wood Band concert. They were drinking 24 oz quaffs of beer, that is my very small 10 oz. I had beer nearly every day that I was in MT so I felt the need to take it easy. Beltian White (made by Harvest Moon Brewery in Belt, MT) comes with an orange slice in it and is super smooth!

This would be Todd (blonde) and Nolan (the other one). I've known them since '93. Great guys that would do anything in the world for anyone that was deserving. They met us at Heather's house to join us for Alive @ 5.

Heather and I blissfully happy after a 1/3rd lb. York Bar hamburger. Super good. You get the burger, potato chips and a York Peppermint Pattie. Doesn't sound like a lot but the burger is massive and super good. I washed mine down with a Caesar. Never had one as good as at York, the lady makes homemade Clamato for it. Perfection!

Sunday, July 17, 2005

Why the "Big Sky"?

Well, I'm back in Minnesota. Flew out of the Big Sky State this morning. Thought I would bid my farewell by posting a few pictures from the trip. I was blessed to spend my last two nights in Montana underneath the beautiful sky...first at the Mission Mountain Wood Band Concert and then floating on the Missouri River celebrating the 200th anniversary of when Lewis and Clark passed through the canyon. Can't really find words to describe it, gaze at the pictures for a while and you will know what I mean.

Saturday, July 16, 2005

They were back...

Last night Os, Just.A.Girl,and I attended one kick ass bluegrass reunion concert! The Mission Mountain Wood Band took over the Helena Fairground arena bringing out a large crowd of 40 and older individuals that were reminiscing of the last time they rocked out with these guys. The long story short is for a long time these guys took a big break from playing together, all staying in music though. They are 5 guys from Montana who were pretty darn big in the 70's. Now Just.A.Girl and I weren't even born! Didn't matter last night!

These guys rocked the stage for over 2 hours with some individual songs lasting 20 minutes. I told Just.A.Girl that bluegrass music always makes me horny and these guys did not disappoint. There is something about that build-up to a feverish frenzy that drives me wild. I can honestly say I got my 60 minutes of cardio in dancing along with the rest of the crowd! Os was adorable...with the opening chord of "Take a Whiff Off Me", his eyes glazed over and he was back in the hay-day! I'm pretty sure he had a great time!

I was able to get a few shots that might work for HNT next week, good ole' MT rodeo area dirt, denim skirt, bare feet. The sky was beautiful last night, big wispy clouds, tons of blue...and people wonder why I miss Montana! Duh...they don't call it the Big Sky State for nothin'. Add a great group of native Montanan bluegrass 70's rockers, great company, and you have a mystic Montana night! Thanks Os!

Thursday, July 14, 2005


I'm up and posted this week but because I don't have my own computer hooked up out here in MT I'm having to host on Osbasso's site. I would also direct link from this post to his site but I have the code to do that saved on my own computer as well. So, check out Views from the Back Row on the Moose Kin list.

Tuesday, July 12, 2005

Silly names

It is 10:30 on Tuesday night in Helena MT and hotter than hades! Still 85 degrees. Just ran to DQ for a blizzard and now are contemplating the ways to stay cool tonight to get some sleep...any suggestions. I was floating around blogger world and borrowed the below from a site a found. Silly names, but wasted a few minutes....

Nic's Aliases

Your movie star name: Pudding Keith
Your fashion designer name is Nicolle Venice
Your socialite name is Pumpkin Lacrosse
Your fly girl / guy name is N Hen
Your detective name is Moose Isabel High School
Your barfly name is Blizzard Brandy 7
Your soap opera name is Kahl HCR
Your rock star name is Nibs Horse
Your star wars name is Nicreg Hendav
Your punk rock band name is The Content Mixer

The Amazing Meganame Generator

Monday, July 11, 2005

Montana made

Okay, so I wasn't really made in Montana but as most of my friends here have told me, I'm pretty much an adopted native. I made it in on Friday night about 20 minutes early and I have been awake and drinking Montana brews since then. Got to bed at 3:30 am on Friday night after sipping brews at Heather's house until then, then went to the East Helena rodeo dance (not a lot of dancing, mostly lots of drinking). Had to drink bud light there and i nearly puked. Not because I drank that much of it because after the microbrews, domestic lights just taste like piss. I'm sure Liz can understand! Got home that night and to bed around 4:30 in the morning. Had to take care of Heather's brother and his friends. Oh to be that young again! They bounced back like troopers just in time to trim hedge the next morning. More than I could even imagine doing if I had consumed the alcohol they had. Priot to that I survived watching ALL THREE of the original star wars movies with Rachel and Os. Okay, I slept through half of the second one but so did Rachel :) Made it to a movie and dinner with Uncle Ray yesterday. heather and I were nearly asleep by 7:30 after I had another fine beer...Miner's Gold hefeweisen from Lewis and Clark Brewery. My friend Todd showed up though and we had to chat for a while. Went to dairy queen for ice cream and called it a night early. Was asleep by 11:30!

I'm so happy to be home! The rest of the week continues to be filled with microbrews, food from all my favorite places, all done with great friends! Haven't taken a single picture yet but I will and will get them up. Os has taken plenty though, I'm sure he will post a few. Yippeee...I'm home!

Wednesday, July 06, 2005

Half nekkid...Not for the faint of heart

There is the right palm...never broke the skin, just turned that nasty maroon color and stayed tender. The second day the right knee kept oozing so now it has a nice cellophane like dressing over it. The prickly looking area on my leg is the inner right shin with a nasty bruise forming.
The top of my left hand looks pretty minor but actually hurts more than the others somewhat every time I use my hand. The nasty bloody shoot is within 10 minutes of finishing the ride. You can't see it but there is a gnat stuck in there! There is a handle shaped bruise on the left knee but the pictures didn't turn out all that well but just imagine the outside of my knee scraped with a bruise long and oblong like the handbar. I'll live and darn, they make such awesome pictures!

Monday, July 04, 2005

I AM Warrior

If all of the above is true, I am She-Ra! Okay, so I know there are a cyclists out there that are much more hard core and serious about this than I, but I want to tell my story. I'm making a serious effort at this fitness thing and actually starting to enjoy it. Yesterday Dave and I headed out for a late afternoon bike ride once the rain and wind went away. We decided to go for a round trip of 20 miles. Farther than I have gone up to this point in time. I was fine with it. Doing great, keeping it between 13 and 16 mph the whole trip. I don't know if that is fast or not but it was a good pace.

We are coming up on the 14 mile mark and are nearing a little town where we have to stop to cross a two lane town highway. I hadn't quite geared down yet but had stopped peddling. somehow I drifted off the trail onto the grass. No big deal, I think. I'll just turn my bike back onto the trail. That is where it fell apart. i was going fast enough and at enough of an angle that my front wheel caught on the edge of the pavement, causing my back wheel to come up and me to go ass end over tea kettle onto the pavement. I wailed, Dave turned around (he was about 20 feet ahead of me), came to make sure I was still moving. Everything moved, lots of throbbing, blood, pavement pieces, it was all good. Dave offered to ride back the last 6 miles, get the car and come back and get me. I'm too proud for that, so I picked myself up and got back on the horse...uhm, bike.

Damage total...major chunk missing from my right knee. It has been about 16 hours and it is still oozing. When we got back to town there was even a gnat stuck in it. I have a raised, bruised area with a bit of a scrape on the side of my left knee that looks oddly like my handlebar. The top of my left hand has two scrapes, one over the knuckles at the base of the second and third finger, one at the end of the wrist on the pinky side of my hand. I landed on the palm of my right hand, didn't break the skin but it is an odd maroonish color this morning. The scrapes on the back of my left hand are hurting the most. The knee won't stop oozing, but is getting tight. All in all, I'll live. I just feel like I fell off my bike. The good news is that I was wearing my helmet, I left a small part of the visor on the pavement as well. Glad it wasn't my forehead!

The worst part of the whole thing was the clean-up. Kudos to Dave for being a trooper. I do this weird hysterical laughing, tears down my face, swearing thing when I'm in severe pain. Washing the pavement and bugs out of the right knee was HORRIBLE! I had lidocaine at my house and needles but no syringes to pull it out of the bottle. So I mixed my normal saline and peroxide and started the soaking. Dave held me down to the bathtub edge by my shoulders, trying to distract me with a backrub. it mostly helped, I only came close to hyperventilating a couple times. I'm sure I was beyond gorgeous! Once the major pieces were cleaned up he even helped get the last few pieces out with q-tips. Afterwards, he grilled me hot dogs and brought me a drink.

This morning, I feel like I crashed my bike. From what we can tell, the bike is okay. No cracks in the helmet. The scrapes and scratches and bruises will go away. There WILL be pictures coming but I have to save them for Half Nekkid Thursday. They should be good!