Feb. 16th, 2012 03:43 pm
melaniesuzanne: (I'm on a bike on OBX 10/5/11)
Every now and then I talk Hubbyfink into meeting me along the trail as I ride home from work. On Wednesday he decided he didn't want to deal with the gym and said he'd meet me for the ride home. I warned him that I needed to do a little shopping as well, but those stops would be mostly surgical strikes.

I wound up leaving the office later than planned thanks to a last minute IM from the Bossman and met Hubbyfink just before the blind curve on Smiths Switch. He turned around and fell in line behind me before a FedEx truck rumbled up behind us and then passed us with a WIDE berth. Heh heh heh.

Shopping and banking happened. The test run of my Avenir Softside shopping pannier happened (successfully). Not running down pedestrians happened. Seeing another cyclist in the shopping center happened ("He just left Eastern Mountain Sports so that doesn't count," said Hubbyfink). We headed for home and something new and exciting-to-me happened.

We rode up the blasted incline to the Route 28 overpass and I stayed in front of Hubbyfink the entire freaking time. I not only stayed ahead of him, I pulled away from him. Dude! Plus, I was loaded down with shopping bags, a tote, and my purse. I didn't need to gear down: I was in my middle gears the whole way up. I was breathing heavily when we got to the bridge, but I wasn't wheezing or jelly-legged.

There was a small amount of gloating and smugness when we got home. Hee!
melaniesuzanne: (I'm on a bike on OBX 10/5/11)
Not much in the way of bikeyness this coming weekend, I'm afraid. Tomorrow, I have to be in Spotsylvania at 8:30am for an SCA event. I'm sure it'll be a fun time once I get there, but dressing-up-in-funny-clothes-and-spending-the-day-on-two-wheels has replaced dressing-up-in-funny-clothes-and-spending-the-day-in-a-field-or-fellowship-hall-with-my-friends as my hobby of choice.

On Sunday, I hope to go out with a girlfriend or two to see "The Woman in Black". I'm sure there will be shopping and sushi and decadent desserts at Amphora Diner afterwards.

There has been a bit of bikeyness this past week. Scott still hasn't ridden to work yet, but he's getting closer. He'd ordered a new handlebar which was supposed to accommodate a bar-end mirror. The new bar arrived this week and no dice. It was the same inner diameter as the handlebar he already had. SpokesPerson Adam proceeded to widen the inner diameter of Scott's handlebar and was able to attach the mirror. Hooray! Now I don't have to worry about my nearly-deaf honey bunches of oats being run down from behind. Well, I can still worry, but at least he'll see it coming and it won't be a total surprise to him.

As we waited for the widening and attachment (is it just me or does that sound kind of... rude?), Scott took a TriCross Sport Disc out for a spin.

Specialized TriCross Sport Disc
Specialized TriCross Sport Disc a.k.a. buttah (but in a manly way)

He was just as smitten over this bike as I am about the Dolce. Unlike me, though, he has to weigh new bike versus new hearing aids. Insurance won't cover the hearing aids; maybe he should see if they'll cover the bike as "preventative care"...
melaniesuzanne: (Default)
My husband wants spiky pedals like mine and I suggested last night that if it wasn't raining this morning, I would ride to work and meet him at the Ashburn Spokes, Etc., and then we could drive home together. We need to put the bike rack on the back of the truck for tomorrow's Bike Me DC ride in Arlington anyway, so it might as well go on when he gets home from work this afternoon.

So. This morning, we discovered that it was raining. I glumly decided to give riding a pass. Scott chided me for losing "hardcore points". I said that I was worried about wiping out on the steep downhill coming off the Rte 28 bridge.

"Bridge, nothing!" he replied. "If I were you, I'd be worried about making it out of the front yard."

I might start speaking to him again next month. And, for what it's worth, I did NOT wipe out on either the bridge NOR in the front yard when I biked in AFTER the rainstorm.
melaniesuzanne: (I'm on a bike on OBX 10/5/11)
Dude. We mid-Atlantic dwellers are going to pay so much for this mild winter. We're either going to get slammed in a couple of weeks or the bugs next summer will be horrific. Either way, I'm going to take advantage of getting in as many bike rides as possible (and enjoy the lack of stink bugs invading my home to escape winter's chill).

Scott and I still need to work out a mutually agreeable definition of a "short" ride. We rode around Sterling doing Saturday morning errands such as fetching prescriptions, mailing packages, dropping off recyclables, and grocery shopping. After a quick lunch, I talked him into accompanying me on a ride to Herndon. The W&OD was full of bikers, joggers, and families. We made it up to Elden Street where I asked if he wanted to ride around Herndon or continue up the trail. He voted to continue on the trail. I then had an idea and suggested we take the Fairfax County Parkway trail up to Route 7 and ride through Sterling to home. He was game and we sped up and down the hills (max downhill speed 30.6 mph!). The ride home was mostly uneventful but the steep, steep uphills were rough.

On one of our rest breaks -- I'm getting over a cold and am not pushing myself as hard as I could -- Scott mentioned that he was getting annoyed with slipping off his pedals and wants a spiky pair like mine. I asked if he wanted to ride to the Ashburn Spokes, Etc. He looked at me like I'd lost my mind and nixed the idea.

Scott threw his chain (first time!) midway up a hill and I was grateful for the imposed break. He was kind of grateful, too. Heh. At that point, I told him I no longer wanted to ride to Spokes. His response was a gaspy, "Good."

We got back home and Scott draped himself on the floor while I bounced around, jazzed from all the fresh air and exercise but also hungry. I called the local Chinese place and ordered for pickup rather than my standard delivery. Again Scott looked at me like I'd lost my mind. Pshaw. The place is only a two mile round trip and just off the trail! He suggested a bike intervention. I laughed as I rode off into the sunset. Okay, perpendicular to the sunset.
melaniesuzanne: (I'm on a bike on OBX 10/5/11)
When I first upgraded to my Specialized Ariel, I was hesitant to add anything personal beyond the standard black rack and black trunk bag. Shortly after that, I added white and red blinky lights for safety and legality, a stem-mounted cell phone holder, and a mirror on the left handlebar. I eventually added a few reflective stickers, a front basket, and a right hand mirror (because I needed to see over both left AND right on that last big curve before entering the campus).

I then lamented to Hubbyfink that my bike looked too silly and it wouldn't be taken seriously. Hubbyfink said that my bike simply looked like a useful commuter bike and there was nothing to worry about. I continued to mull and finally asked myself who I was trying to impress. The guys at the bike shop don't hassle me about what I've done to my bike; in fact, Hubbyfink says that the personalization (and the fact that I don't look like the typical bike racer type) is part of why the guys remember who I am even when I don't have the bike in tow. The other commuters are pretty friendly and we nod and smile at each other as we pass on the trail. Nobody in the BikeMeDC meetup group has ever said anything derogatory. I've even gotten a few compliments on my bike (and apparel) during group ride events such as the Backroads Century and the Great Pumpkin Ride.

I say that I'm not happy unless I'm fretting about something but personalizing my bike is definitely NOT something I should worry about. So I'll keep adding bits and bobs and trade out pieces of equipment (black trunk bag for colorful Basil pannier, for example) as I see fit. If, to paraphrase the song, they see me rolling and they be hating, I don't need 'em.
melaniesuzanne: (Default)
I enjoy my Highlander but the exterior color hasn't pleased me from day one. I miss having a red vehicle but the pamphlet the dealership gave me showed that Highlanders came in silver, white, grey, black, gold (*retch*), mossy green, and a silvery blue. No red, alas and alack.

HOWEVER, on the ride home from Memphis, we were passed by a red Highlander on I-81. RED! Much to Hubbyfink's chagrin, I started hollering, "RED! THEY MAKE RED HIGHLANDERS!!" There were some curse words thrown in for effect as well. I then tried mollifying myself with some sour grapes along the lines of "Well, maybe that's a 2009 color... It wasn't in the pamphlet."

Well, I finally checked the Toyota website this afternoon and there it is: SALSA RED.

Hubbyfink won't trade in his Prius so that I can have a red Highlander.
melaniesuzanne: (Love)
So. I've been going nuts for nearly a week trying to figure out what the third piece of music in Miki Ando's Cleopatra-themed free skate program was. (That link takes you to the NBC Olympics page with a video of her program after a short commercial.) I knew the first piece was the theme to "Rome" and I didn't care about the second piece. The third piece, though, I KNEW I'd heard it before. Google searches turned up results that said her music was from "Rome" (yes, yes, I know that part), "Marco Polo" by Ennio Morricone (neat), and "Asterix and Obelix: Mission Cleopatra" (say what?). NOTHING in Asterix and Obelix soundtrack came close to that piece of music.

After a week of searching iTunes and Youtube for hints, I confided my conundrum with Hubbyfink. When I mentioned "Marco Polo", he said, "You know, Loreena McKennitt has a song called 'Marco Polo'." I said, no no... that's not it. Our CDs are packed away (as part of the prep for basement remodel) so he kindly copied his ripped version of "Cairo to Casablanca" for me because I KNEW that song was on that compilation.


More internet searching ensued and I finally stumbled upon the NBC site and was able to play Ando's performance. He suggested a "Rome" theme remix. No... I decided it must be Dead Can Dance, and I could practically hear Lisa Gerard ululating along. Luckily, I already had "Toward the Within" and "Into the Labyrinth" on my computer and I sifted through songs on those albums. Parts of "Yulunga" are very close, but no proverbial cigar.

Then it hit me. My mind's ear wasn't hearing Lisa; it was hearing Loreena! I sheepishly asked him if he would pull up the albums he'd ripped. And there it was, just as he suggested an hour ago: Loreena McKennitt's "Marco Polo". Hubbyfink has a very happy, music-enabled wife who can now come up with something new with which to torment herself.
melaniesuzanne: (Stress!)
We're down to our last kitchen trash bag! I told Hubbyfink he would have to brave the damp streets and raving crowds at CVS to get more bags.

'Fink: We have super duper industrial bags in the basement.
Me: They're black and will clash with the kitchen decor. Plus, they're too big to fit in the trash can.
'Fink: Why do we have to put the bag in the trash can?
I point at Margie, who is transfixed at the storm door watching the snow fall.
'Fink: I'll duct tape her paws together and prop her in a corner somewhere.

In other news, strawberry daiquiri goodness is chilling in the freezer. =)
melaniesuzanne: (Grr argh)
The fun folks at Night of the Living Podcast say that mummies are not zombies. This is because mummies are golems and are animated by magic.

Of course, the potions used to turn people into zombies* could, technically, be considered magic. I mean, reanimating the dead sounds rather magical to me. So, does that mean that zombies could be golems as well? And mummies are zombies? Or are zombies simply fresher, unwrapped mummies?

I need a horror geek salon. Srsly.

*Traditional, voodoo-style zombies. Not these johnny-come-lately, brain-seeking zombies.


Dec. 15th, 2009 12:49 am
melaniesuzanne: (Default)
The last day of the semester is this coming Saturday and it can't come soon enough. I'm so thankful that I cut back my hours and am taking only two classes a semester; I'm sure I would've had more breakdowns by now. Hubbyfink's probably thankful too, even if he doesn't know it.

During the winter break, I'm going to tackle any and all outstanding Virginia exchequer issues and make sure that my ducks are in a row before the fourth quarter/year-end reporting panic starts in January. I'm also going to work up a class for Atlantia's February University (I'll have an email to you by the end of the week, [livejournal.com profile] pinkleader). And I'm going to get into the hard-core research for my new C15 Venetian ensemble.

Or maybe I'll just kick back with "Arkham Asylum", "Bioshock", and/or "Dead Space" and rot my brain with video games.

Work is being especially hellacious this week and it's only Monday. Bossman is taking the brunt of the ugliness, bless him. On the other paw, we're going to meet the 18 December deadline for getting orders in to a vendor and that's a tick mark in the positive column. One day at a time.

Hubbyfink and I are putting a plan into place so that we can spend our seventh anniversary (May 1, 2011) in Venice. I wanted so desperately to go to Venice this coming April and attend the Renaissance Society of America's yearly meeting but we simply can't swing the cost. With a year to prepare and save, though, we'll be able to do Venezia in style.

Aside from last week's unfortunate episode after filing a nail too thin, I haven't bitten my nails since November 13. I haven't had nails since senior prom (which I then bit off when I broke up with my boyfriend). I love my nails. Basilmonster LOVES my nails and constantly wants scritches. Alright, I've kicked the nail-biting habit. Now to get my weight under control, huh.

Geek alert

Dec. 1st, 2009 10:02 pm
melaniesuzanne: (Venetian: pink cioppa)
Hubbyfink's playing Assassin's Creed 2 which is set in 1480s Florence and Venice, and I'm critiquing the clothes of the NPCs in the background. There have been some decent outfits, but I've spotted an Elizabethan-era tall hat and the Florentine whores are wearing the 16th century pointy Venetian hairstyle (did they wear that style in Florence?). The street doctor is wearing a plague mask; that's a nice touch. Most of the women are in gamurre; I've seen a couple of giornee. Hubbyfink's spotted some chaperones and bag hats among the men.

I'm anxiously awaiting his character's arrival in Venice. Heh heh heh.

ETA: Neck ruffs?? In 1480 Florence?? Say it ain't so!
melaniesuzanne: (Homeowner mouse is home)
I frightened Hubbyfink with all sorts of wild ideas about home improvements yesterday. There were quick calls and voicemails throughout the day consisting of "Oh! We could do this!" and "Ooh. We need to check this first, though." His coworkers concluded that I must be very bored at work. Not really; I'm simply putting off the work I don't want to do.

I decided that I would pull the carpet off the stairs this weekend and install new treads. Hubbyfink was less than thrilled with this idea and suggested we paint the bedroom instead. I accepted his counter-offer but maintained that I still wanted to see what was under the carpet so I know what we'll be working with. I was hoping for hardwood, but suspected it would be plywood and subfloors. When Hubbyfink grudgingly pulled the carpet back on the top step, we were unsuprised to find plywood. Ah well. He's terrified that I'm going to rip up the carpet while he's at WAMW next week and has begged me to leave that project for another day when he's home. Fine.

Oh! I can paint and make some cosmetic changes to our bathroom while he's gone. That should insert a tiny icepick of fear in his heart.
melaniesuzanne: (Embarrassed / *facepalm*)
I am a bad wife and my laundry fu is exceeding poor this week. Not only did I shrink Hubbyfink's orangey-red wool Bockston tunic (it's been laundered how many times since I made it and it chose NOW to shrink??) and Hubbyfink's magenta hood from Historic Enterprises (which is just WRONG because my black HE hood of the same weight wool was in that wash load and DIDN'T shrink!), but now I've managed to color every white article of clothing he wore this week a dark shade of mauve because the duvet cover, which stopped bleeding before Pennsic, chose this week to bleed anew.


I owe Hubbyfink a LOT of new clothes. :(
melaniesuzanne: (Default)
I nixed painting the top of the pavilion valance this morning because I haven't decided what exactly I want to do with that space. I finished the top seam and called the tent done. Hubbyfink really likes the way the stripes on the ends of the roof look; I agree that it creates a neat, sort of sunburst pattern. Anyway, that project is done. Whoo hoo!

Eyelets on the yellow gamurra are done. I'll finish the hem during "True Blood". Whoo hoo!

Whipped up a gold-n-black giornea which fulfills Her Excellency [livejournal.com profile] azpapillion's request that everyone have a garment in Baronial colors for Pennsic. The outside is a strange and loose weave of black and yellow wool which I had for a few years. Thankfully, I had just enough black linen to line the giornea. One more garment on the completed list. Whoo hoo!

I feel slightly rejuvenated by having hibernated this weekend and not spoken with anyone except Hubbyfink. The poor dear hasn't had an easy time of it dealing with me lately. He never knows if he's going to encounter Jekyll or Hyde when our paths cross. I am very grateful for his support and unconditional love. I'm also thankful that he's finished repainting my trunk and will reattach the hardware this week. He made the mistake yesterday of saying that he wished I had more projects for him to work on. After giving him a wide smile and gleaming eyes -- which made him panic a bit -- I told him that I didn't have any other project for him. He looked a little relieved.
melaniesuzanne: (Default)
Hubbyfink is watching "Deep Sea Salvage" (which is so appropriate for the HISTORY CHANNEL) and one of the guys was using a cutting torch. The narrator mentioned the temperature of the torch and Hubbyfink said, "That's a mite bit warm."

"Yeah," I respond. "I bet you could make quick work of roasting a marshmallow with one of those."

Of course, Google has failed me because it's not returning any useful hits for how long it would take to melt a marshmallow over a cutting torch. Inquiring minds want to know!
melaniesuzanne: (Default)
It's t-minus 20 days until I'm camping (okay, technically, I'll be camping on Land Grab Saturday, but then I come back home for a day or two) and I've decided that I need even more clothes! The proverbial bee got into my bonnet last night and I yanked out the cocoa brown and hot pink wool gabardines which have been "ripening" nicely since last September. (You did know that you have to let fabric rest a bit after it's been shipped, didn't you?)

Anyway, those gabs are destined for a hot bath this evening so they can both become cioppa, a type of Italian overdress. I think my yellow linen will also get a hot bath so it can replace the pink gamurra. There's nothing wrong with the pink dress -- it's a perfectly acceptable soft baby pink -- but my stomach does lazy flip flops when I look at it. Weird. Ooh. I could totally dye it.

After Pennsic.

Of course, I still need want need to do all the handwork on the blue and green gamurre as well as hem all my underbritches and make cushion covers and finish painting stripes on the tent (wall #2 this Saturday and roof the following weekend). Oh! And make some cuffia (Italian coifs). And work with my false hair braids for fake hair taping (I played with that a bit last night when I couldn't sleep and it actually looked pretty good).

Thank goodness Hubbyfink has agreed to take on clothes rack and repainting my trunk duties. He's a good egg.
melaniesuzanne: (Love)
I thought that Hubbyfink needed more senseless violence after he finished playing his video game and I found Mav TV -- the male answer to Lifetime, I assume -- which was playing "Demolition Dynasty": a behind-the-scenes look at a demolition derby team. There was fire, there was bleeped-out cursing, there was crunching metal. When one of the guys who lost the derby got out of his car and threw his helmet angrily at the windshield and then slammed his fists on the hood of the car, I turned to Hubbyfink and said, "He's got anger management issues."

Hubbyfink gives me a look and explains, "It's demolition derby. What do you expect?"

"That they would do this just for the fun of it," I answered.

He howled with laughter for a good couple of minutes. Boys are weird.
melaniesuzanne: (Default)
Watching "TrueBlood" and then knocking oneself out with a shot of Nyquil.

My allergies went haywire this weekend and I felt awful yesterday. So awful that I came home early despite being in charge. (I still feel pretty bad today, but I can feel the allergy meds starting to kick in.) During one of my lucid points last night, Hubbyfink and I watched this week's "TrueBlood". It was awesome. It was then time to hit the sack with a pre-emptive strike of the afore-mentioned Nyquil.

Only rarely do I get trippy Nyquil-induced dreams. Last night was definitely the exception. I dreamed seasons three through five of "TrueBlood" plus a prequel to "Dark City" (or maybe it was "City of Lost Children"...) and... something else which has now drifted away from my memory. Of course, I couldn't remember any of the details of the cool stuff I dreamed so I can't send Alan Ball the next three seasons of his show. Ratfarts.
melaniesuzanne: (Oh my)
Thanks to a conversation with [livejournal.com profile] danabren I have discovered a new... well, not fear exactly... but something which induces a serious case of the willies: duck teeth.

Seriously. The chills and shivers keep going up and down my neck at the thought of those creepy little tooth barbs. I cannot put into letters the icked-out sound that keeps welling up in my throat, but it's something akin to waughuh.

Waughuh. *shudder*

ETA: And thanks to [livejournal.com profile] pirategirleee, I'm now terrified of duck tongues.

melaniesuzanne: (Mask by bugaboo_chamber)
It's been a rough week in MelanieSuzanneville. Spent much of Sunday and Monday on the verge of tears and spent much of Tuesday trying to be in a really foul mood. Coming home to a King Cake and sharing it with friends after Alle Psallite practice really improved my mood.

Hubbyfink, of course, has been an absolute saint. I apologized last night for being so flighty and inconstant. He said it was okay; after six years of togetherness he's just about gotten used to it. While he was technically correct, that wasn't the right answer. But I let him live.

Today I'm feeling fairly fierce in my black pleather (ahem) jacket, new fitted jeans, and faux-Victorian ankle boots. Fierce. The jeans actually make my tush look good. Hee!


melaniesuzanne: (Default)
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