Monday, March 20, 2006


I have a very keen sense of olfaction. I'm serious, it's amazing. I can smell things a mile away. I'm sure right now you're thinking, we must tap into this ability, Amanda must use her powers for good not evil, but hold your horses, like any superhero, I too have my weakness. Superman's weakness is Kryptonite, mine is hot nuts. No, not those kind of nuts. The kind they sell in the that little kiosk.(*see footnote) Those nuts kill me. To some they may indicate a sweet treat awaits them in the center of the aisle, but they attack my nose and immediately send convulsions to my stomach. I literally had to throw up after I left the mall one time because of those nuts, and a stomach bug too probably, but those nuts definitely sent me over the edge and they never touched my lips.
I can smell things from miles away. Sometimes I'll be walking to my car and I'll find myself paralyzed by a particular odor. I heard on NPR recently that women associate more memories with smell than men. So many times I'll smell the air and think it smells like Indiana, I'm not sure what it is, but it does. Last weekend, I was walking to my car from my mom's house and the beginning smells of spring reminded me of a day when I was twelve years old (this was a really nice thing because usually the smell of crape myrtle's and freesia will just about put me in bed for the rest of the day.)
For some reason, right now the computer lab in the library smells like lasagne, and I'm starving. Every so often, outside of the library, it smells like a hair salon. I still haven't figured that out, I hope they're not testing my aveda products on some monkey downstairs, but it did remind me that I'm 5 months overdue to get my hair cut. (My appointment is on Thursday.)
My mom went to a wedding for one of her clients at work that must have had the same problem as me as the invitation indicated that odors were prohibited from the wedding. The poor girl had to turn away her perfumed guests and she had to use fake flowers--unfortunately no one told her that you can actually find them in colors other than orange. Don't make me have to do this for my wedding too. Just so you know...I can't handle perfume either, however, if you are a fine smelling black man, come on in. I hope this doesn't sound racist, but I cannot resist the smell of a black man in cool water.
My college roommate and I were very generous about sharing our microwave, unless you wanted to cook popcorn, then you better take your butt down to the basement. You know that smell does not go away. Last week, one of my colleagues was making popcorn in our office in the Chapel Basement. It made the entire chapel narthex smell like popcorn. I think the grieving folks appreciated that. It's much more fun to feel like you're going to the circus than a funeral.
(*Why has every mall in America taken so kindly to the kiosk by the way, it's just like in middle school when they built a new school and immediately needed trailers, why can't we anticipate our shopping needs from the very beginning. I have a system to maintain, up one side down the other, I can't be bopping back and forth from store to kiosk, I am bound to miss something that way)

Thursday, March 16, 2006

The Magic of TV

I really like TV. I like it so much that it inspired me to work out in high school when my mom cancelled our cable and my friend told me that the bikes at the Y in Charlotte had their own TVs attached. So, for a few months I pretended to be a young man named Charles (I used her brother's pass) and reacquainted myself The Real World. (Oh, yeah, I also worked out too...kind of.)
The other day I broke down and tried on a pair of gaucho pants. (Big flowy cotton shot/capris like things-who would have guessed we'd think they were cute?) I could not have looked more disgusting if I tried. The way those pants hung on my thighs made them look like to freshly stuffed quielbasa sausages. I quickly ripped those suckers off and vowed that I would once again find a gym. Weight Watchers is not enough. All of this madness was accentuated by my purchase of not one but 3 vacation packages yesterday. (It came across the fax machine at work as if it were destined for my vacationing pleasure alone, and I'm a sucker.)
Joy told me that I could go to Salem to work out for free, and understanding the magic of tv herself, enticed me with stories of cable tvs loaded with HBO-and MTV. So, I geared up around 9:30 last night to give it a shot. I only had to try the code lock for about 17 minutes before I was on my way. The new gym is very nice...not like the scary torture machine we had when I was a lass and had to walk 12 miles in the snow to work out. There were two girls on the treadmills when I arrived both fashionably decked out in their yoga pants. I cannot work out in pants-for some reason I have a serious sweating disorder in the glands on the backs of my knees and my calves-besides I needed to regularly eye those sausages so as to motivate me.
I hopped on the RFD (you may know this machine as the elliptical trainer, but Nathan calls it the RFD-robot feet of doom-and I think this is much more appropriate). I don't actually like this machine because I cannot regulate it. I hop on and instantly my legs are spinning like the Roadrunner, but my lungs can't keep up and before you know it I've passed out hitting my head on the machine on my way down. I've got to go to the ED and get my head sewn up, it's not a pretty picture. However, I DID NOT want to actually stand next to these girls, so the treadmills were out. Joy warned me about some folk's tendency to hog the tv, and although I wanted to be one of these people, I did not want to call more attention than necessary to my presence, so I watched what they watched. One TV was tuned to the gauntlet, the middle tv to basketball, and the third to American Idol. So, I plugged my ear buds into the machine and switched between two stations---can you guess???--of course! Not basketball! The girl in front of me (in the too tight yoga pants), I soon learned was a clapper. I don't know what she was cheering for, but I'm pretty sure she has Tourette's Syndrome and I know this because I watch Miracle Workers (once again, television has improved my life). Every now and then she would just bust out with 5 rapid claps this was particularly odd because you can't hear the tvs unless you use headphones, so except for her clapping the room was silent. I finally figured out her claps were in relation to the programming and after a bit of shrewd observation, I learned that she was not cheering for the game, but was in fact clapping for American Idol. She was not happy with the final results btw.
I only did the rfd for 10 minutes. That's about all I can handle. I watched the rest of my shows from the comfort of a variety of exciting machines and contraptions. Near the end of my time, two girls came in and kindly reminded me that I am not in college anymore. They pedaled away on the rfd for an hour. I kept wanting to shout at them-you won't look like that forever!!! Take advantage of it now...put on a thong and parade across campus because in five years you'll want to hang yourself in the Old Navy dressing room after you realize that Bob Evans could feed a nation on those sausages you call your thighs. But, I restrained myself. I did, however, hop back on the RFD for 30 minutes. I AM AMAZING. I am strong. I'm invincible. I AM WOMAN! The girls got off the RFD and stretched for a bit-I don't stretch...too boring-then hopped on the treadmill for a little run. I HATE THEM. Oh, I did have to take a quick break from the machine. I got thirsty and though I could hop off for a water break. But, the water was hot and caught me off guard, which choked me, and made me cough, and the water came shooting out of my mouth and splashed on the rubber/tile floor. I'm sure the girls must have thought that the old lady was vomitting in the back corner from the workout, but they trusted I could handle it on my own and did not come to my rescue...thank God. Once I gave myself the heimlich on the water fountain and returned to regular breathing pattern I was off and I finished the whole program! Hooray for me!
I rolled out at about 11 and made my way home...but first I stopped at Harris Teeter and bought 15 packages of light yogurt. I can't resist a sale!

Harassing the homeless

So, I promised in my first official blog that I would tell some intersting chaplain stories. This is not particularly related to being a chaplain, but it did happen at work.
A bag of BBQ baked lays is 3 Weight Watcher's points. When I was on-call the other night, I only at 2/3 of the bag, so I had roughly 1 point of chips remaining. As I made my exit at noon the next day after working 27 hours on-call I remembered the remaining chips and got so excited. I pulled them out to eat as I was walking out the chapel door and headed to the overpass to get to my car. From behind me I heard someone say, mmmm those chips sure look good. (I should tell you know that I have quite the relationship with the housekeeping staff at this hospital, particularly the male members of the team. We do quite a bit of flirting during the day, or rather they do and I try to figure out if I'm being sexually harassed--this is the beauty that is Amanda, my extreme naivete because I'm pretty sure that 92% of the time, I am.) So, I thought this was just a prelude to another of our romantic exchanges and seeing as how I hoard each and every one of those delicious points for myself, I was not going to turn around for fear I might be asked to share, so I just said in a very perky voice, YEP!!! They sure are tasty! and shook all of the crumbs into my mouth! Then I turned around and smiled and walked away. It was about 1.5 seconds after I turned around that I realized...that guy was homeless! I just chirped away about how tasty my potato chips are then walked off. Clearly, I've learned nothing from Arrested Development. And, so I just want to say sorry to that man. I'm sorry I didn't share my chips with you...Go 'head Mr. Wendal.
I saw a man with no clothes, no money, no plateMr.Wendal, that's his name,no one ever knew his name cause he's a no-oneNever thought twice about spending on a ol' bum,

It's hard out here for a pimp

Random thoughts I'm having today
-I need more e-mail. I often find myself obsessively checking my e-mail. I keep it logged on, so that I can keep clicking over to see if I have some. I get more and more frustrated everytime I check it and there are NO NEW MESSAGES! I realize that a lot of this problem could be solved by actually replying to the ones I have already been sent, but alas I am to lazy for this. So, instead I check my bank balance again, see what's coming on tv tonight, look up random things on the internet and wait... Please don't make me wait anymore.
-Some people think this picture is of me hugging a large penis. It's not. It's actually a large snowman that I had no part in building, but Greg says he did. I just wanted it to look like I had built it, so I got my picture taken with him. Plus, I thought he was pretty cool. There were no snowmen in my life this year.
-Someone in this computer lab keeps sneaking out heinous SBD farts. It's really awful. I thought it was the doctor sitting next to me, but they've continued since his departure, so he probably thought it was me. The first one caught me so off guard that I almost puked up my lunch. Since then I've been holding my breath. I could leave, but then how would I check my e-mail? So, instead, I'm just being slowly poisoned by noxious gas...and ingesting someone else's ass air.
-I've recently become obsessed with reading blogs. I kind of like them because they feel like spying. I found two girls from Salem online with blogs and liked reading them so much that I felt guilty, and realized I felt like I knew them more than I actually did, so I outed myself. Now they're my computer friends. You can find them with my other friends and read their blogs too. I just finished reading all of Emily's past posts and now I'm sad that she doesn't post 30 at a time, because that's how I like to read them. I'm almost finished with Joy's and then I don't know what I'll do. I did however find that I enjoy reading this one lady's blog, you may have heard of her, she was in glamour recently, and she's been writing forever, so that's got me set for a while. You should read her recent story about working out. Especially if you enjoyed my blip about the sbds in the computer lab. You can find it here:
-My car is finally fixed. I like having four windows!
-I'm really happy for 36 mafia and their Oscar win. I think it's exciting when something unexpected and unconventional breaks up an old white guy's party, but I don't like that song. I like rap, but I don't like that song...well, at least I didn't like it when they performe it on the show. I like 36 mafia too...I really like that song I gotta stay fly y y y y y y y y till I die ie ie ie ie ie ie ie ie

I got robbed!

I accidentally parked in the wrong lot yesterday morning. Well, not so much accidentally, but not exactly on purpose either. If you don't know the rat maze that is baptist employee parking it won't make sense, but I'll tell anyway. I tried to park in this one lot thinking I'd really enjoy the walk back to the car because it's very springy outside these days, but it turns out that the space I saw was a handicapped space, and seeing as I'm not handicapped, I couldn't park there. I couldn't exactly get out of that lot and didn't really have time to climb to the top of it...lots of speed bumps, it's a slow drive...I saw a secret entrance to my usual lot and not sure if I was really allowed to go through that gate, but knowing I was short on time, I tailed a lady through the gate (meaning, I didn't swipe my card, but followed her closely so the gate wouldn't smash my car). I did see a sign on my way in that said 2nd shift parking only-all others will be towed. Oops this wasn't a secret entrance to my lot, but a secret floor. Well, I'm not really second shift, but sometimes I do have to work 27 hours, so the second shift is surely during some of that time, so I figured what the hell, I'm running late. I parked right by the steps and hightailed it into the office for morning report.
At the end of the day, I was kind of worried I'd have a ticket and was actually talking about the lack of security in my lot, so I figured I was safe. (can you see where this is going?)
So I walk out to my car...a little early because I was trying to stop by Hallmark to get Freddie a card for our 5 year anniversary of dating..and when I got to my door I noticed that the bottom left corner of my backseat window was shattered. Somebody cracked my window and didn't leave a note...then I realized I was standing on glass and that that bottom shattered portion was actually all that was left of the window!!!! Somebody broke into my car!!! Now, here is the really weird part. There was a lot of crap in my car--it was a real mess--Freddie had actually suggested we clean it out that weekend, and if you've ever seen his car, you'll know how bad it must have been. But, none of the stuff had been touched, except for a 2 liter bottle of Diet 7-Up that I had seatbelted into the backseat (long story that involves puking and other gross things). They had the nerve to bust up my window and only steal a 2-Liter of diet drink. WTF?!?!


So, I woke up on Tuesday morning with ear pain. Sounds weird, but the pain was worse when I yawned and since I'd also had a nightmare the night before, I was particularly sleepy, so I was yawning a lot. Anyway, I yawned all day and kept feeling this sharp pain in my ear. It was also making this weird squishy noise when I would touch it, kind of like water in your ear, but not exactly. One of the best parts of working in the hospital is Employee Health. Coming from someone who averages one sinus infection a month, it's really a perk to be able to run over and see a PA for free and get some meds. I had just been there last week, so I was a little embarrassed, but I headed that way fearing an infection.
The PA who saw me said everything looked really good, something was appropriately shiny, but he did say, I bet you have a black dog, don't you? No, I said, but my boyfriend's roommate has one. Why? Well, he said, because there is a black hair in your ear. (GROSS!) He was encouraged that it wasn't on my eardrum, but was perhaps rubbing up against it when I yawned or pressed on my ear, so we would need to remove it (yes, please!) So, the PA proceeded to wet a q-tip and shove it very deep into my ear (in my head I'm hearing my allergist who was very firm when she told me I should not stick anything larger than my elbow in my ear-of course something that size wouldn't help at all-but I have been trying to be careful). It took everything I had not to elbow him in the gut as he probed deep into my ear a few times unable to remove the pesky hair. Finally, he got it out enough to get the forceps and remove it fully and sure enough there was a hair just like the thousands that cover Gus the big black dog's body. My ear is still a little sore from the probing, but the yawning problem is gone. He told me about one man who had a cough for three months until they removed a hair from his ear. Can you say, eeewwww!

Chaplain's Blog

So, this is really my first attempt at blogging. I think I could be pretty good at it, because I have a tendency to spill my guts out on e-mail to people I really don't know that well. The first time I ever read a blog was when a friend of mine (more of a casual friend from church) had hers linked to her IM and I read it. Well, she apparently has the same problem I do and really poured her heart out for all to see. My other problem is that I'm really quite nosy, so I, of course, read the entire thing. I found myself in a weird predicament where I knew all about how she fell in love with this guy and their relationship struggles, etc....mostly things she probably wouldn't actually tell me herself, but I discovered legally. I felt like she and I had this really deep connection because she'd told me all of her personal secrets, but I realized later, she really didn't...she didn't even know that I knew them.
So, this attempt at a blog really isn't going to be that kind of a thing. It would just be too uncomfortable for all of us, don't you think? But, I do find that a number of funny things happen to me...or at least I think they're funny---well, maybe not so much funny as evidence that I have very few social skills, but still stories that I think deserve sharing none the less. So, now rather than me subjecting you to them against your will, you can read them at your leisure...of course, I probably will still subject you to them anyway, so now you'll just have to hear them twice...they really are funnier straight from the horse's mouth anyway.