Office Olympics Day
If you work in an office that won't participate in Office Olympics Day, you should take a break today to watch another office enjoying their Olympic Games, complete with and awards ceremony. Then you can pretend that you participated in office Olympics today. Oh yeah!
If you do participate in actual office Olympics today, be careful, I don't want to be indirectly responsible for any workers comp claims please!
But do check out this page for very creative ideas for events, like Cubicle Hurdles, and the Office Chair Chairiot Race. Good times for all.
Friday, September 29, 2006
Office Olympics Day
Thursday, September 28, 2006
Ask a Stupid Question Day
Fish Tank Floorshow Night
And there are just too many questions to ask.
Tuesday, September 26, 2006
Johnny Appleseed's Birthday
You know those pretty pink clouds at sunset? Those aren't clouds. They are trees, planted in heaven by Johnny Appleseed. (According to Disney.) So we should celebrate Johnny's birthday today, in honor of a man who made the American "West" more beautiful... and umm... fruitful.
To learn more about Johnny Appleseed (John Chapman) read this page, or this page. There are facts to be learned and games to be played to day!
And if you are not into that, there are apples to be eaten. I personally don't like cooked apples in general, but I do like this recipe a lot.
4 medium crisp tart apples pealed and sliced
place in 8X8 baking dish
2/3 cup butter
1 cup brown sugar
1 cup rolled oats
2/3 cup flour
2/3 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon ginger
Sprinkle over top of apples. Cook in 350 Degree oven for 35-40 minutes.
Yum! Yum! Yum!
Monday, September 25, 2006
National One-Hit Wonder Day
Today is a day to sit back and ponder on those songs that you liked for about a week and then drove you crazy for a year. Yeah. Like the Macarena, by Los Del Rio in 1993, remixed by the Bayside Boys in 1996. According to VH1's Top 100 Greatest One Hit Wonders, the Macarena is the number one One Hit Wonder. But, this list didn't go back very far...
This list, only has 50 songs on it, includes British songs like Monte Python's Always Look on the Bright Side of Life, and goes all the way back to Louie, Louie, by the Kingsmen, 1964.
Since it is Banned Books Week, it is interesting to note that Louie, Louie was under investigation by the F.B.I. and the F.C.C. for obscenity, and banned in the State of Indiana.
Check out this letter from an angry parent to the U.S. Attorney General, Robert F. Kennedy. It makes me wonder if there is an F.B.I. file on the Baha Men for their song.
Anyway, I hope that I didn't ruin your day by putting song lyrics in your head... and if I did just remember that "in every life we have some trouble, but when you worry you make it double, don't worry, be happy!
Sunday, September 24, 2006
International Rabbit Day
There seems to be some confusion about what day is International Rabbit Day. Some sources say it was yesterday, some say it is today.
Either way, everyone should read Edgy Killer Bunny's blog to learn about Banned Book Week. You should also read his post about which books to read.
I, myself, am going to pick up The Chocolate War. It seems like a good choice since it is on both top ten challenged book lists, it quotes one of my favorite poems, and it was published the year that I was born.
But, if you are looking for a non-banned-bookish way to celebrate International Rabbit Day, and are still looking to celebrate Read-A-New-Book-Month, I would recommend reading The Runaway Bunny, by Margaret Wise Brown and Clement Hurd, or Bunnicula by Deborah and James Howe. Both are very good books for all age groups. Unless animals talking and having human-like thoughts are scary to you... then I wouldn't recommend either book.
Anyway, have a Happy Rabbit-Reading Day!
Friday, September 22, 2006
Elephant Appreciation Day
Elephants are not my favorite animals. Well, mostly because I never liked zoos, because I hate monkeys. I did sort of like elephants because of the Kipling Story, but was always turned off by the smell. But after reading this web story which shows that elephants love to eat pumpkins, I now have a new love for elephants. Elephants love pumpkins; I love pumpkin food stuffs. It's almost like we are the same being! I must now say that I love elephants because they love pumpkins.
My favorite pumpkin recipes are:
Pumpkin Melt in Your Mouth Biscuits
1-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
3 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. salt
1/4 cup sugar
1 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1/4 tsp. allspice
1/3 cup butter, cold
3/4 cup pureed pumpkin (cooked or canned)
3/4 cup milk
Preheat oven to 450 degrees F. Sift flour into mixing bowl. Stir in remaining dry ingredients. Cut in butter with a pastry blender until mixture is crumbly. Stir in pumpkin and milk to form a soft dough. Roll out on floured surface to 1/2-inch thickness. Cut out biscuits with biscuit cutter. Place on greased baking sheet. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes. Makes 24 to 30 biscuits.
2 cups canned pumpkin
1/2 cup almond milk
1/2 cup vanilla yogurt
1 tablespoon pumpkin spice
1/2 lemon, juiced
1 dash vanilla extract, plus 2 dashes
1 1/2 cups crushed ice
Cinnamon for garnish
In a blender, combine pumpkin, soy milk, yogurt, pumpkin spice, juice of half a lemon, and 1 dash of vanilla extract. Blend together until smooth, and begin adding the ice while continuing to blend. When mixture is thick and creamy, stop and hold in refrigerator at least 30 minutes. Sprinkle with cinnamon
Pumpkin Cream Cheese Spread
This is absolutely the best with bagels or crackers! As good as Einstein's!
1 8-ounce package cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup canned pumpkin
1/4 cup sugar
3/4 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
Beat all ingredients in a medium mixing bowl with an electric mixer on medium speed until smooth. Cover and refrigerate for at least 1 hour or up to 24 hours. Makes 1-1/2 cups (24, 1-tablespoon servings).
And what would pumpkin recipes be without a pie?
Buttermilk Pumpkin Pie
This pie is lighter in texture and a little tangier than traditional pumpkin pie. The buttermilk flavor is wonderful. This pie is best served chilled.
1 disk, Pie Crust
1 egg yolk
3/4 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
2 teaspoon cinnamon., 2t ginger, 1 t nutmeg, ¼ t ground cloves
2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup canned pumpkin puree
3 tablespoons melted butter
1 1/4 cups milk + 2 Tablespoons lemon juice till curdled
Roll out dough on lightly floured surface to 12 inch round. Carefully transfer to 9-inch pie pan. Press into pan. Trim and decoratively crimp edges. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Bake crust until just golden, about 15 minutes. Reduce oven temperature to 350 degrees F.
Meanwhile, whisk eggs, egg yolk and sugar in large bowl until blended. Mix in flour, spices and vanilla. Stir in pumpkin and butter, then milk & lemon juice mixture. Pour filling into crust. Bake until set (center will puff slightly) about 45 minutes. Cool completely.
And with that we are almost ready to celebrate the Month O'Pumpkins! Woo Hoo!
If you have any bad rings laying around... please toss them into the nearest volcano, so that we don't have a dark lord and armies of orcs taking over the country... oh, wait... Who ever has the one ring, get rid if it now!
Egg Equinox Retraction
After further research, I have found that the eggs balancing on the Equinox is an urban legend. Sorry. Apparently, eggs can balance on any old day of the year. It has nothing to do with the tilt of the earth. This astronomy facts website helps answer some of these questions, and guides us to further egg balancing experiments, and blames the media for continuing to do news stories that promote these rumors. Check the site out, see if you want to do your own experiments. Can you balance an egg today? How about tomorrow- Equinox? And then the day after? Be your own myth-buster!
Wednesday, September 20, 2006
International Banana Festival
Okay, I don't wanna talk about it. Yes, there are no bananas on this website.
We are two days away from the Autumnal Equinox. Check this site for a countdown to all the upcoming Equinoxes, Solstices & Cross-Quarters. (And pay no attention to the fact that I missed blogging about Lughnasad.)
First, one might ask, what is an equinox? They are the half-way points between the solstices. They occur in the fall and spring. During an equinox the sun rises exactly in the east, travels through the sky for 12 hours, and sets exactly in the west and everywhere on earth experiences close to 12 hours of daylight, and 12 hours of nighttime.
So, what are we supposed to do for an equinox celebration?
- Some believe that during the spring and fall equinoxes one can balance an egg on one end
- As it is a time of balancing-- eggs, light--it is a good day to balance your accounts, renew leases, and for renewing and setting balancing life goals
- Also it is perfectly okay to burn a straw man in effigy-- Apparently, it's cleansing!
- Make a dream pillow in preparation of the long nights ahead. Fill the pillow with your favorite combination of herbs lavender, rosemary, catnip, sage, and vanilla beans, to encourage good dreams
- As it is the time of harvest, and the land is giving many gifts to us, remember also to give back to the land, plant a tree, de-litter a park, ride your bike to work instead of driving. Celebrate your own thanksgiving.
- Take a walk and listen to the leaves turn color... I promise, if you listen closely, you will hear them!
- Cuddle up with someone, its the perfect time of year for it.
- Or you can cuddle up with a book, if your someone is not cuddly, or if there is not a someone to cuddle with, because it's Read A New Book Month, and next week is Banned Books Week. I put my complete faith and trust that Edgy will blog about Banned Books Week, or all my hope for banned books will be lost.
Tuesday, September 19, 2006
International Talk Like A Pirate Day
Avast me mateys! 'Tis International Talk Like A Pirate Day! And what exactly arrre we supposed ta do with that information ye may ask? Why we talk like a pirate, 'n' spread the word ta other scurvey dogs out tharr who be just beggin' ta ha' an excitin' day today!
First, if ye want ta read the Almanac o' Merriment in pirate talk, click here. (It be quite funny in places. My new masthead states: "One seventh o' yer life be spent survivin' Mondays-- make the most o' it. ARR! ARR! I'm two pirates!")
If ye want ta find out yer true pirate name, click here. Arrgh! My Name be Lazy Eye Laura. Which be funny if ye knew me nickname were "Patch" me last year o' high school.
If ye want to read all about the history about International Talk Like A Pirate Day, click here. (All hope abandon, ye who enter thar!)
If ye want to translate yer own stuff into pirate click here! Ye can do yer own blog or any site with http, er just plain text ta translate if ye want ta sent an email ta all yer mateys. Yo ho ho and a bottle of rum! Er a memo ta yer co-workers might be nice in pirate. Ye know, somethin' like:
Staff: Tharr ha' been reports o' excessive use o' the copy machine fer personal use. If ye be one o' the staff who has been usin' office machines fer personal use 'n' not reinbusin' the petty cash, ye will be severely punished. This chair be high says I! Also, at noon today tharr will be a birthday parrty fer Glenda in the south lounge. Please come willin' ta sharre yer best grog fer the party. Yo ho ho and a bottle of rum!
All celebrators o' Talk Like A Pirate Day would surely appreciate a memo like tat!
I had fun translating me matey's blogs into pirate. Hardy har har har!
Have a Happy Talk Like a Pirate Day!!! And watch Goonies if you have time, it's the best pirate movie ever made in Oregon.
Monday, September 18, 2006
National Cheeseburger Day
Since we just experienced Chocolate Milkshake Day, I think the universe wants us to go out to eat good, old-fashioned, fattening, American food this month. To prepare for the holidays I guess.
When looking on the internet for cheeseburgers that I haven't tasted that I might want to taste, I was tempted by the menu at Cheeseburger In Paradise. And, I was also happy to see that they have a gluten-free menu, so I can visit there with my gluten-free friends. But, it looks like it I won't be able to visit there until they spread out a little west, or I go back a little east, as the closest restaurant to me is in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma.
Whenever I head up north to the Pacific Northwest, I eat a delightful cheeseburger at a chain called Burgerville. It is made with Tillamook Cheese (The best cheddar cheese ever- no bovine growth hormone added!) Burgerville also has a Black Bean Gardenburger and seasonal menus with Walla-Walla Sweet Onion Rings in the summer, and a to-die-for Hazelnut-Chocolate Shake at Christmas.
So, where does the Absent-minded Secretary eat a cheeseburger when she really wants one and she doesn't want to go eight hundred miles in one direction or another? Fuddruckers.
At Fuddruckers you can get your hamburger made with ostrich meat. Which sounds wild and crazy, but really mostly just tastes the same.
Being a control freak, I really like Fuddruckers because I can control exactly how my Cheeseburger turns out, and it doesn't seem like I am being too control-freaky about it. (Yea! I can be picky about sauce and not worry about bothering a waitress!)
And I have also had some pretty good memories at Fuddruckers. I have had at least three birthday parties there, and two of them were supposed to be surprises, but no-one has ever been able to throw a complete surprise party on me. So every time I walk into a Fuddruckers, I look around to see if there are people waiting to surprise me. It's quite nice, in a special way.
International Talk Like A Pirate Day Eve
Tomorrow is International Talk Like A Pirate Day. This is a very important day for... um... pirates.
To learn how to speak pirate properly from the thromborax, and with the proper conjugation of your verbs, check out this video. You will want to prepare now, so you won't be embarrassed when all your friends are saying stuff like avast, aye aye, and arrragh! all day tomorrow.
Friday, September 15, 2006
Thursday, September 14, 2006
National Cream Filled Donut Day
Hm. I'm just not feeling excited about cream filled donuts. Sorry. But, maybe if you bring in a bunch of cream filled donuts for your coworkers today, they will feel more excitement, and they will be able to write a better blog post about cream donuts.
Unless they have already read this WikiHow.
If they have already read that, then you will have to probably need to talk long and hard to convince them that the cream filled donuts that you brought to work were the best ever; that blogging about the donuts from an existential point of view will uncover new secrets about cream and donuts that will bend the reality of cream filled donuts in foodblogdom, and that single post about cream donuts will make your coworker famous.
Just make sure you forward me the link. Thanks!
Wednesday, September 13, 2006
Fortune Cookie Day
When I was eighteen years old, two weeks away from starting my sophomore year of college, on the second declared major of my college career, I opened a fortune cookie that stated that I would be married within the year.
Interestingly enough, I could have married someone that year. It would have been for the wrong reasons, but I often wonder had I made that choice, would now I be the mother of four kids, living the perfect suburban life.
And would I be happier?
And would I have stuck with my Environmental Geology major just to get through school quickly?
And how would my life be different without five myth, legend, and folklore-type classes under my thinking cap. Would I have my weird obsession with frogs?
Am I becoming the crazy frog lady?
Positive Thinking Day
I am not the crazy frog lady. I am not the crazy frog lady. I am not the crazy frog lady. I am not the crazy frog lady. I am not the crazy frog lady.
Defy Superstition Day
- The dried body of a frog worn in a silk bag around the neck will prevent fits. (Not sure how you are going to practically apply this defiance- but have fun!)
- A frog brings good luck to the house it enters by it's own will.
- A cure for thrush is to hold a live frog with its head in the patient's mouth. As it breaths, it draws the disease out of the throat of the patient and into itself.
- Frogs eyes hold the souls of dead children (Sounds like we need to dissect some frog eyes today!)
- Warts can be cured by rubbing a frog across them.
- Shiny skinned frogs predict fine weather.
- Dull skinned frogs predict rain.
- Frogspawn at the edge of a pond mean storm's a commin'.
- A woman of childbearing years should not touch a frog as it will cause her to be infertile
- To kill a frog is very, very bad luck (Are we all forever cursed from our high school Biology classes?)
- Cure a toothache by spitting into a frog's mouth and ask it to carry the pain away.
- Kiss a frog to find your prince.
- Or if that doesn't work, and your lover is untrue, stuck pins all over a living frog and then bury it. The young man will suffer extreme pains and eventually returned to you. Dig up the frog and remove the pins. The pain will cease. The man will then, (perhaps rather unwisely, you little manipulator) marry you.
- The first person to bite an apple while bobbing for apples will be the first to marry.
- It was said that if a girl put a spring of Rosemary and a sixpence under her pillow on Halloween, her future husband will reveal himself to her in a dream.
- If a young person eats a raw or roasted salt herring before going to bed, the future spouse will appear in a dream and offer a drink of water. (Presumably because you will be thirsty from eating salt herring.)
- Peel an apple in a continuous strip. When is falls to the floor, it will reveal the letter of a future husband.
- Sweep the stack around the base of a corn stack with a broom three times. On the third time around, your future partner will appear.
- Blindfolded girls go out in pairs to the fields to pull the first cabbage they can find. This will reveal things about their future husbands.
- If there is much earth attached to the root, they will have plenty of money.
- But if there is only a little earth, they will be poor.
- The taste of the heart of the cabbage will reveal whether the man will have a sweet or sour disposition.
Well, I hope that you all Powerfully Defy your Superstitions and Think Fortuitously Upon Cookies today!
Tuesday, September 12, 2006
Chocolate Milkshake Day
You can have a chocolate shake...
Or you can enjoy a really, really good chocolate shake...
Or, apparently, you can take one of these chocolate shakes...
What ever you choose... have a Happy Chocolate Shake Day!
Friday, September 8, 2006
International Literacy Day
The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) annual supports an International Literacy Day. This year's theme for International Literacy Day is: Literacy Sustains Development. According to UNESCO statistics there are 781 million illiterate adults in the world who cannot read. That may seem like an impossible statistic, that there is very little that we can do to help, but there are so many ways that anyone can help.
Many libraries have adult literacy programs where you can volunteer to be a tutor, and often it requires just a small amount of time each week. The Provo City library sponsors a program called Project Read, which is an excellent program. (And sometimes you can find cool writing tips on their website.) Or, you can simply support reading activities, like those posted here.
The next thing to celebrate, after International Literacy Day of course, is Roald Dahl Day. I do have to be honest and say that Dahl is not my favorite author (I just am really, really creeped out by Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, and that has tainted everything but Matilda for me.) but I can support any day that celebrates an author.
After Dahl Day, we have Tolkien Week (September 16th-23rd), and the week after that is the American Library Association's Banned Book Week (September 23rd-30th).
See, we all have lots of opportunities to support literacy this month, so let's just do it!
Thursday, September 7, 2006
National Feel The Love Day
I have a few things to say about this day. Mostly because I am not feeling the love at work. I hope that this doesn't get me dooced, but, I am going to share a bit of my Wednesday with you.
I am the person that is called up to the front desk to deal with difficult people. I have some ability in this area... not so much in my personal life... but at work, avec les belligérents.
This Wednesday I had to deal with a Army Vet who was out of control, way over the top angry. All he had to do was sign his name on a piece of paper, and then take it to his wife for her to sign it, and then turn it in, and then we could run his paperwork. We could not run the paperwork without his written permission to do so. Even though he was verbally telling me and the whole world that he was giving me permission, if we don't have his signature, how are we going to prove that he one time said it was okay to dig into his deep dark past.
According to him, this request was more bullshit than he had to deal with in the seven years he served in the Army. I think that opinion was a whole bunch of bullshit, because I am sure that the Army had him sign papers all the time.
He was so mad that I would not budge on the paper signing thing, he let off a string of swears that were quite long and derogatory. I stopped him. Not because I was really offended by the words so much, as the tone and the intent. I told him that until he could behave like an adult he could step outside the office. The way he looked at me I thought that he was going to reach over the countertop to kill me. All over a piece of paper, and two signatures. But, you know what? I was just stubborn enough to be willing to die over it because he was being such an ass. I was not feeling the love for him.
Later this afternoon came back and asked the receptionist if he could talk to me and to my boss. He told my boss that I was one of the bravest people he had ever met. (Okay, so maybe he gets a twinge of love.) My boss was confused over this exchange because he had missed the morning shoutfest. That's okay, because if he had understood what had happened, I would have received lecture about my tendencies to not call in for backup when threatening situations happen.
Which leads in to the next man with felonious eyes. Mr. Angry Number Two has been coming in for weeks trying to get confidential information from the staff. I got called up to deal with his request today. I handed him brochures of other agencies where he could receive help, but firmly told him that he would no longer be receiving assistance from our agency. This started a twenty minute rage where he waved his hands around, pulling papers out of his backpack, manically searching for some sort of new information to appear out of the pack that would allow him to force me to do his will. It didn't work.
When I told him that he needed to leave, he began shouting about how he has been a Professional Stage Hand in California and Utah for OVER 30 YEARS and I have the worst stage presence of anyone he has ever seen. Ever. (I have to say that this can't be true, because I did not laugh when he said it. I didn't even crack a smile.)
When he said that he was very proud of the fact that he hadn't yet hit me... I realized that there was never going to be any love for this man. I called in the backup. The backup came and circled around me and they soon realized that he was not going to leave on his own.
I wasn't going to ask him to leave any more. I knew that if I asked him to do anything it would push him over the edge, so my tactic was to just say no, say no, say no, say no, and say no. Finally he got it when there were three people nodding their heads every time I said no.
After he left, my coworkers asked me if he hurt my feelings because he told me that I haven't got any stage presence.
Umm, no. And, still no love for him.
But, ten minutes later, while we were still standing around talking about the craziness of the day a woman with the spawn of Satan came in. This child immediately went to the heating/cooling system (stupid engineers who designed the controls at five-year-old-level!) and turned the heat up to 80 degrees and then proceeded to knock over our ficus plant and start stripping the branches of their leaves. All the while the mother ignored him.
I had had enough today, and I could not handle anymore. I told the woman that she needed to discipline that child. And now! Or she would be responsible for the damages the the very (not) expensive plant.
I was quite surprised at her mode of discipline. She righted the plant, turned off the heat, and took off her son's shoes and put them in her purse and she never said a word to him. He sat in his chair, right as rain, until she finished her paperwork. Weird. What the heck does taking shoes off mean? And why didn't she do it before he knocked over the ficus. But, I have to feel twinges of love at the uniqueness of her disciplinary skills. No shoes=good behavior. Who knew?
Sigh. Now that is off my chest. I really hope I am never asked to feel the love with any of those people ever again. And I don't think that I need to celebrate the date. That's it folks! Please, no love for Absent-minded Secretary on National Feel the Love Day!
Celebrate amongst yourselves.
Wednesday, September 6, 2006
Tuesday, September 5, 2006
Be Late For Something Day
I guarantee that I will be late to something today, probably late for work, without even trying. But, it's good to know that my lateness will be sanctioned. However, I will not be late for the other celebration of the day. Absolutely not.
Cheese Pizza Day
What better way to celebrate the season premiere of House than with a cheese pizza party? And who better to have at the cheese pizza party than LL. And what better way to eat cheese pizza with LL than without gluten? Yes, yes, I think that we will be having gluten-free cheese pizza to eat by the light of the tv tonight!
Although, the rest of you do not have to eat gluten-free cheese pizza, please celebrate with cheese pizza. And if you would like to join us in our House groupie ness you are welcome to come to my place. The show starts at 7pm so be here earlier. We don't want to miss an eyelash. :)
Hmmm. Happiness to follow.
Friday, September 1, 2006
The weeks of September
National Tools of the Trade Week; Waffle Week; Self University Week; International Enthusiasm Week; Childhood Injury Prevention Week; Full Employment Week
National Full Employment Week; National Letters from Mom Week ;National Play Days (Perfect for the Shakespeare Festival!);
Suicide Prevention Week; No Bully Week; Invisible Chronic Illness Awareness; Minority Enterprise Development Week; Habitat for Humanity's International Building on Faith Week; Assisted Living Week; International Children's Week; International Housekeepers Week; National 5-A Day Week; Protecting Your Home Furnishings Week; Substitute Teacher Appreciation Week; Building on Faith Week; Improve Your Home Office; America Goes to School Week; Emergency Preparedness Week
Love Your Files Week; City Tripping Week; Clean Hands Week; Balance Awareness Week; Farm & Ranch Safety and Health Week; Build A Better Image Week; National Farm Animals Awareness Week (Let's just be aware of them, okay, especially since it's; National Singles Week; National Constitution Week; National Rehabilitation Week; National Ovarian Cancer Awareness Week; National Prostrate Cancer Awareness Week; National Love a Mensch Week; Lunch Prowl Week; Substitute Teacher Appreciation Week; but probably the most important week is Tolkien Week
Banned Books Week; Chimney Safety Week; Adult Immunization Awareness Week; Religious Freedom Week; National Deaf Awareness Week; Go Wild During California Wild Rice Week; National Dog Week; National Angel Week; National Take Charge of Your TV Week; National Nuclear Medicine Week; Teller Appreciation Week; Snack a Pickle Time Week
Posted by Erin aka- absent-minded secretary at Friday, September 01, 2006