Tuesday, August 29, 2006


I just got word my friend was caught sending personal emails (to me) while at work. Her boss told her, "I see you and Karen are very good friends. I've been reading your emails."

To which my friend said she turned beet red.

So I went back to my inbox to review today’s exchange.

The last email I sent before her boss pulled her aside included the phrases, "Maybe if you stop sniffing my socks, these dreams will cease" and "Whatever, you were totally making out with my severed head, don't lie!”

Those sentences seemed so innocuous when private and so entirely creepy now that they've been exposed.

Friday, August 25, 2006

What is this "waitlist" you speak of?

Since my return to academia, I've experienced fewer instances of workplace tomfoolery and inefficiency than when I was employed at large corporations. But I had a meeting the other day that had me feeling nostalgic for the good old days.

I've recently been assigned as the go-to member of the Processing staff for Admissions Event Registration. Whenever a recruit goes online or calls in to register for an on-campus event, I'm the lady maintaining that data.

Okay, now that we all understand each other, I attended my first Event Registration meeting this week. On the agenda? Waitlists.

An hour later, we'd decided to handle waitlists as follows:

Set a number of maximum registrants per event.
When the max is met, provide a waitlist option for the interested parties.
As registrants cancel, move members of the waitlist onto the registry in the order they were waitlisted.
Inform the lucky waitlisters that they are waitlisters no longer.

Funny, see, I thought that was the definition of a waitlist. I'm really glad we all had a sit down to figure that one out.

Thursday, August 24, 2006

Perhaps I fit in afterall...

So I've had some mixed feelings about working on the campus of a Catholic University. I was brought up a heathen United Methodist and strayed from that flock long ago. Plus, there is the whole lesbian feminist thing that doesn't quite jive with the Pope. But I needed a job and I was qualified for this position. Luckily, it turns out my coworkers are pretty progressive and I enjoy academia over corporate America, even at a school where theology is a core requirement. Yet my guard has remained slightly up given my surroundings. This is the only job I've ever had where I regularly received emails asking me to keep people in my prayers.

But then I went into the doctor today for a physical, complete with the dreaded OB-GYN exam. Hey, I've worked in two "women's clinics" (If you know what I mean... and I ended up working for a Catholic school, how, you ask?). I am all for women being diligent and proactive when it comes to their health, but then there's the reality of a metal speculum up your cooch and my take on the pap smear is like most women: necessary, but not fun.

With such an exam brings the usual pre-exam questions and the always awkward dyke responses:

Nurse: Are you sexually active?
Me: (Hell) Yes!
Nurse: Are you on the pill?
Me: No.
Nurse: Well then, any chance you're pregnant?
Me: (Yes, I did say this) I'm a lesbian so that would be a miracle. *

Which got me thinking about Mary and the whole Immaculate Conception thing. I felt a certain kinship with her, our foremother in having to answer awkward questions regarding the status of her uterus. Poor Mary, did Joseph ever really believe her? So that was my first religious experience today.

That nurse had it easy by the way. When it came to the birth control issue, she'd asked a yes or no question. Usually they ask what form of birth control you're on:

"Well, you see, when women like me have sex, there isn't any penis involved. Well, sometimes a synthetic penis is used, if you are into that kind of thing. But either way, there's no sperm."

Luckily, my doctor came in shortly there after, a woman who knows me well enough to know my sexual preferences and practices. I suggested to her that she stamp my medical files with LESBIAN in big red block letters. The last time I was there a different nurse asked me about stress and when I mentioned a recent break-up and she proceeded to pat me on the shoulder and patronizingly tell me that I'd find a new, better boyfriend. Yes, I did correct her.

I put up with the nurses at this clinic because of my awesome lady doctor that I can joke about these things with when my feet are in the stirrups. And because she told me I only need to get a pap smear every three years because I don't have sex with men and I'm young and healthy and the risks are so low. Bless this woman (see, here I go getting all religious again) for not making her lesbian patients adhere to the same regimen as her straight female patients. Why have I never been told this before? Well, I know why. The short answer being "patriarchy" and the long one involving the history of medicine and medical schools coming from the male perspective, women only being viewed as vessels for carrying children, our tender bits only having to do with reproduction and not pleasure, any women who has sex with no possibility of pregnancy are not worth research dollars, etc. etc. etc.

So what was my 2nd religious experience you ask? When it came time to draw blood, I warned the lab technician that historically, my veins don't like to show themselves. Sure enough, she tried both arms before she surrendered to another nurse who also tried both arms before giving up and moving on to the back of my hands. She tried both hands before she finally found a gusher.

So as I was driving home, my hands at 10 and 2, looking at the bandages dead center on the backs of my hands, I just started laughing out loud by myself in the car. What if I walked on to the campus and held my arms up, yelling, "Behold! I have the Wounds of Christ! Bow down before me and worship the Virgin (yeah right) Lesbian of Uptown Minneapolis and her Stigmata."

The only difference between me and Jesus being the Bugs Bunny band-aids on my wounds. Well, not the only difference.

*I just want to acknowledge that while this conversation truly did take place, there is a lesbian comedian (her name is escaping me at the moment) who has a whole bit about this very thing. My diatribe might sound similar and I wanted to acknowledge any pseudo-plagiarism up front.

Monday, August 14, 2006

DMB tools

It is official: Boys that wear Dave Matthews Band baseball caps look like complete and utter weenies.

Thursday, August 03, 2006

I just wanna be your teddy bear

Here is what I wrote in an email recently to attempt to explain my cat's unusual sexual predilections:

"Ivan has only been in my life for a couple years and he came with some unique habits. As a kitten, Ivan had a stuffed bone (I think it was meant to be a doggie chew toy) that he cuddled with and ultimately began using to um, satisfy himself sexually. Well, the kitten grew in size, but alas the bone did not. Ivan's previous owner discovered that Ivan had graduated to his mother's stuffed animal collection (creepy, I know, not so much the humping as the existance of a grown woman's stuffed animal collection). That wouldn't do, so a special trip to goodwill was made and that is how Ivan came to have his very own hump bear. But here's the interesting part. Ivan holds the stuffed bone in his mouth while he humps the teddy bear. He also carries around the disgusting, threadbare, crusty-with-god-knows-what bone in his mouth such that I find it in random places in my apartment. But when he leaves the bone on top of the bear, you know what he's been up to when you weren't looking.

So Kelsey is correct, Ivan doesn't hump other cats. However, I've never seen him around another cat. Chances are, the bone and bear are simply poor substitutes for the really thing. So probably best for your cat to steer clear. In fact, I advise most creatures to steer clear of Ivan because he really only gets along with his bear and himself (no, not even me most of the time). So while flattered that you want to meet him, don't say I didn't warn you if he tries to bite you."

In related news, a
guard dog at a children's museum did what dogs do and chewed up a teddy bear collection (Ivan's nightmare really- so many hump bears laid to waste by, of course, a dog). The difference being that this was a rare and valuable collection of teddy bears. The photos taken in the museum after the massacre are hilarious. The dog is standing there with a look on his face like, "What? You mean that $75,000 teddy bear that was once owned by Elvis wasn't meant to be a chew toy to help me pass time on the graveyard shift?". The King's bear, by the way, was on loan from a collector. Yikes.