production maven

pro•duc'tion n. 1, act of bringing forward. 2, a product of physical or mental labor; esp., a theatrical presentation. ma'ven n. an expert. Also, ma'vin.

Tuesday, April 27, 2004

ain't too proud to beg....

Ok, maybe sometimes I am too proud, but in this case I'm not.

People, the company that my husband and I run is sucking the proverbial pond water. It's not terrible, dire straits... not yet, anyway. But it sure as hell isn't getting much better... No one in our area wants to spend money on promoting themselves. I know it's been a slow time, but according to the ding-dong in office (oops, that should be Ding-Dong, capitalized because he's POTUS and all) we're in an economic revival. Not sure where you're living, Mr. I'm-in-office-for-a-month-or-two-and-give-myself-a-200%-pay-increase, but that "revivial" isn't hitting Vermont or, as far as I can tell, the rest of New England, unless you're a big business or pharmaceutical company.
Sorry about the rant.

But really the economy still sucks, gasoline prices are still unnaturally high, and bills still have to get paid. Plus my two car incidents didn't help the ole' checkbook.

If you have some work for a creative type (and yes, it hasn't escaped my notice that many of YOU are creative types but I'm hoping that you need help because you have so much work to do), be it logos, brochures, book design & layout, production work, WHATEVER. Please give us a shot at bidding on it. You can reach me through the link over to the left, or by clicking here. We will freelance, do contract work, anything that needs doing.

And, most humbly, without pride,
Thank you.


Friday, April 23, 2004

Spring has sprung, the grass is riz...

Now it's time to get the lawnmower and the rototiller tuned up and get started on the jillions of projects that need to get done outside of the house. *Sigh.* I love being a homeowner, but sometimes it takes over. And I do love my home. And it's still a little cool to get flowers and things that I LIKE to get and take care of in the summer. It's the raking and weeding season. Bleh.

Had a good, accident free week this week. Well, I did at least. Unfortunately one of Mr. G's childhood friends, one of the only ones that he keeps in touch with, died on Sunday in a car accident. Very sad. He was a person who loved life, and drove like a bat out of hell. So, really, sadly, it's no wonder. We heard about the accident from The Crazy, who we haven't talked to since before Christmas. She never read Mr. G's e-mail that he wrote to her, telling her how he thought she needed help because she had a personality disorder. We thought that was why we never heard from her. Guess it was just her being passive aggressive and waiting for him to call her, after she hung up on him before Christmas. Oh well. Same old story. Same old pattern.

Some exciting news is.... I have found the GREATEST dress to wear for my friend's wedding next week, it's here. Now, I won't look as great as this little sample dress, as I am a little larger than the sample, but it is still ultra cute. It has a red crinoline. That makes it extra special.

And something hillariously funny is here. Oh my god. I haven't laughed like that in a while. I wish I knew where my old college roommate Celeste Federico was... we used to laugh our heads off at camel toe. We called it camel paw though. Whatever. Same thing.

This weekend my aunt was going to come for a visit, but now they're not. So I have some projects to work on, for work and home. Fun fun! It never ends. I feel like, lately, the harder I work, the less money I have. Does that mean that if I quit my job, I'll become a millionaire? Because you know I'll try it. Just watch me.

Thanks to the comments from my lovely readers regarding my car incident. The Forester is fixed up and back on the road. Now I need new tires. And new front brakes. Endless. And the Outback (Mr. G's car) is in the shop, getting fixed from the garage episode. We're going to pick that up tonight, and then take ourselves to The Black Sheep Bistro, a restaurant that we've been hearing a lot about and have been meaning to get to for a couple of years.

Have a great weekend, all!


Friday, April 16, 2004

spinning my wheels

I have a LOT of work to do this morning, and so I'm going to have to keep this quick. But maybe not so quick. Am having one of those days where my fingers hit the wrong key when I type. I hate that.

OK, remember a couple of weeks ago when I was complaining about feeling like nothing was happening? Well, that's been continuing along, much to my chagrin. Mr. G. and I are pretty busy, but we're doing work that we can't get paid for, i.e. making corrections to a job that the printer screwed up so we have to reprint (thank god we don't have to pay for rerunning the job), working on a book that has been in the making since mid-2002 and that we've pretty much billed what we can for it, sending out estimates, etc. Things are still pretty blah, our billing record is sucking ass right now, and we're hoping this changes soon. Hence the title to this entry. I told Mr. G. that as an incentive, he could always remember that if our business fails he'll have to get a real job. He didn't like that.

So.... Wednesday when I was coming home from Boston, as soon as I got out of the tunnel on 93 north, my car started to make a very weird noise. Not a good weird, like sonic boom sound. Sound almost like a flat tire. So as I'm sitting in traffic, I stick my head out the window to see what's what. I don't see anything, so I'm talking to Mr. G. and going along, trying to figure out the noise. It's not consistant with anything, and it gets worse when I push in the clutch. It slows down when I break, and gets horrendously loud when I accelerate. The fastest I can stand to go is 60 mph, otherwise I may be rendered deaf. The car handles fine. The engine, when I'm in traffice and I rev it a couple of times, doesn't sputter or make any unusual noise. I pull over at one point and look under the car for foreign objects. Nothing seems odd; everything is in place. So back in I go, I stay in the right lane with my flashers flashing, and I set the cruise control to 60. I get off 93 north in Concord, and get onto 89 north. Everything seems fine, accept for the horrible noise. I get about 6 miles up the road. Then, wonder of wonders, I figure out what on earth that noise is!!

My TIRE falls off!!
Yes, that's right, the rear driver's side tire falls off the car, and as I'm getting over to the side of the highway, during rush hour, just outside of Concord, I see, out of my peripheral vision, a tire, crossing into the passing lane, spinning up the embankment, then jumping back on the highway, for a solo journey of about 500 feet up the road, before coming to a standstill on the other side of the highway (in the median area).

Here is what I'm grateful for:
1) That I am alive.
2) That I didn't kill anyone.
3) That my car is only going to cost a couple hundred bucks to fix (she's still in NH, I pick her up next week).
4) That I was in cell-phone range.
5) The nice man who pulled up right behind me, made sure I was ok, and went and got my tire. Thank you, wonderful good samaritin with the New York tags. You helped me greatly. I wish I had gotten your name and address, so that I could do something nice for you.
6) That it wasn't dark / cold / rainy / snowy.
7) That my AAA membership is active.
8) That the nice state trooper pulled up behind me and hung out with me until the tow truck got there (I know it's his job, but it's reassuring to know that you're not going to get tail-ended by someone going 80 miles per hour.
9) That the tow-truck guy was able to get the car on the lift and not do any damage to it. And that he dropped me at a great restaurant where I could hang out and the staff were so accommodating.
10) That my extra-wonderful husband got in his car and drove to get me, 250 miles round trip.

Also that it didn't happen in the middle of the highway in Massachusetts. The drivers there would have tarred and feathered me for causing an accident up there.

I don't believe in God per se, but I do believe in a higher power and I thank that higher power for protecting me. That was some scary stuff.

So that's my spinning my wheels story. I am happy to report that things seem to be turning around business-wise, too. Yesterday Mr. G. won a $50 savings bond (ha ha, I typed bong first - a savings bong.... "you put your weed in it" - anyone remember that SNL skit?) at a Chamber mixer... and we were awarded a big job from the Chamber, so yay! And all kinds of other good things. The huge "Wheel" (of Fortune, and not the TV crap either) is turning around for me/us. And I am very, very, humbly grateful.


Monday, April 12, 2004

Meme et fertility

Mr. G. and I have decided to call Easter (which we do not celebrate) "Fertility Sunday". It's based on older pagan celebrations (as are Groundhog Day, Christmas, Halloween, and some other bastardized holidays that we celebrate in America. And when I say celebrate, I mean decorate the hell out of your lawns with ugly blow-up life-sized decorations and lights). We're not pagan per se, we just identify more with the traditions and celebrations and meanings behind the pagan rituals, rather than the Christian crap. We're not religious. I go to church once a year, max, for my mom, with my mom, because it means something to her and if I can make her happy, then I'll do it, because she has done so much for me. But I don't pray that way, and I don't kneel, and I don't take communion. I pray in other ways, and it makes me happier.

Anyway. So we went to my parents house for dinner yesterday and had a great meal, oh man was it good. Ham (which I have just started eating; for a long time I had issues with swine—I just didn't dig on them), macaroni & cheese, brocolli salad, bread, asparagus, and strawberry shortcake. You must know that in my family, strawberry shortcake is something akin to paradise. It's our favorite dessert. Tragically, you absolutely can not get a decent one when you eat out. And, it's really only something that you can enjoy in early summer, because of the strawberry season. My mom's shortcake is the best. Hands down. It's not a sponge cake (eewwww! gooshy!), and it's not a biscuit (the horror!!!). It's a mildly sweet cake that is extremely delicious, and it's only good on the day that it's baked. It doesn't overnight well—this has never been a problem in our family because we eat it all. The strawberries must be fresh. They are mashed. Real maple syrup is added. The cream is real cream, lightly whipped, with a little sugar and vanilla extract added. Take a slice of the shortcake, slice in half horizonally. Place in bowl. Spoon some strawberries and juice over the cake. Place a blop of whipped cream on. Enjoy. When I was a kid, one day a year, in the summer, we would have strawberry shortcake for every meal of the day. This was usually at my dad's behest, but we all enjoyed it. Breakfast, lunch, dinner. Delicious.

Then we watched the Masters (don't ask) and then we had a couple of roustingly good dominos games. Mr. G. and I are really into dominos now, because of my parents. It's really fun. It's harder with two people, which is how things end up in this house, at least for now.

And, to finish up today, please try these memes:

[Grab the book nearest to you, turn to page 18, find line 4. Write down what it says] "in use when Currier and Ives poplularized lithography in the" (Pocket Pal, 17th edition, 1997 - sorely out of date- [it's not what you think, it's a graphic design reference tool])

[Stretch your left arm out as far as you can. What do you touch first?] Nothing. Almost my bulletin board.

[What is the last thing you watched on TV?] The Masters golf tourney. Not something I usually watch, but it was nice to see the guy win. He was psyched. Also some story about the DaVinci code research, when we were leaving my parent's house yesterday.

[With the exception of the computer, what can you hear?] KEXP Seattle, being live-streamed on Mr. G.'s computer.

[When did you last step outside?] Yesterday.

[Before you came to this website, what did you look at?] The other blogs that I check almost daily.

[What are you wearing?] My faded City Sports t-shirt, inside out. And my yoga pants. And socks. In the hopes that I get motivated to work out today.

[Did you dream last night?] Yes, I dreamed that Mr. G. and my brother were drinking beer out of our very delicate wine glasses and I got so mad that I was going to leave him and he wouldn't let me go, which is a good thing.

[When did you last laugh?] I'm not sure. I think it was last night when Mr. G. was laughing at something that I was saying.

[What is on the walls of the room you are in?] Some posters with typefaces on them, a Happy Lite (tm), a mirror, a picture of the Dalai Lama, a poster about this being a print office, a bulletin board, a calendar, one of Mr. G.'s paintings, and the phone charger thing.

[Seen anything weird lately?] Define weird.

[What do you think of this quiz?] I love these things

[What is the last movie you saw?] Men in Black, it was on TV the other night.

[If you became a multi-millionaire overnight, what would you buy first?] One hundred acres on Lake Champlain and build my dream house on it, so that I don't have to see everyone else's houses.

[If you could change one thing about the world, regardless of guilt or politics, what would you do?] I would make me the Queen and Supreme Ruler, and I would routinely kick the ass of everyone who annoyed me. Ditto that (from, and make sure everyone got an equal education and just level the field a little more.

[Do you like to dance?] When I'm by myself or goofing off with Mr. G. I'm not very good at it.

[George Bush.] Hate him as a political leader. He's such a damn puppet! I'm sure he's a nice enough person, he's just an ass as a President. Although I suspect that his father is the one pulling the strings here.

[Imagine your first child is a girl, what do you call her?] Quinn. Or Astrud Wednesday Bernal B.

[Imagine your first child is a boy, what do you call him?] This is a hard one. We like the name Addison. We liked Maxwell Griffin, but those have both become mucho trendy.

[Would you ever consider living abroad?] Yes, yes, and yes! Get me out of here!


Monday, April 05, 2004

in absentia

I've been horribly, hideously absent as of late. And I do apologize to the three people who read this blog on a regular basis. And I have to keep this short because I'm still up to my eyelids (the bottom ones) in much to do.

*my parents are now back and safely in their new home. to celebrate their return from three months in Florida, mother nature threw them a party complete with snow. it's fucking freezing again. with extra special ice!

*we helped them move last weekend. it was fun.

*work is piling up, yet, we're incredibly broke. I don't understand this phenomenon. I really don't. we're balls to the wall busy, and there is NO money! what the F? and i had to pay some taxes. i hate that.

*we had the floors in our office done this weekend. well, most of the floors. the flooring guys ran out of material. there is about 10 feet left to go. typical. so that meant that on Friday we had to take the entire office apart. Mr. G. had a fun time with the snake-pit of wires yesterday. we're back up and running, and the flooring guys come back some time this week, if the damn flooring material lady would get back from their warehouse in South Dakota and tell me if they have more of the same stuff so that I can buy it.

*i have been getting silly amounts of spam. seriously. I didn't check my e-mail for about 36 hours, and i had 80 spams. Come on. Stop it.

*i am waiting to hear from a client about how they want me to proceed on a job, and once i hear from them, i'll get to work until 11 or so tonight, in order to finish their project. this is what i call not-so-much-fun fun.

*gravity is especially strong lately. i've been knocking things over and dropping stuff like my hands are lard-covered paddles.

*last night was our book club meeting. I didn't read the book. I started it and hated it. It was Everything is Illuminated. So I didn't have much to say.

*I am going for a well-deserved haircut, eyebrow waxing and massage this Friday. I can't fucking wait.

*I cracked Mr. G's car yesterday when I was moving it out of the garage. I was pretending I was a hot shit and turned too fast and smooshed the wheel well into the garage. Oops. He's forgiven me, though. He's good like that. He was pretty mad at first, and I don't blame him.

that's about it in my fun-filled life.

Oh, by the way. I can't believe it's been 10 years since Kurt took himself away. Play a little Nirvana and light a candle today, to remember that depressed genius.

I'll try and get better about writing.