Friday, March 31, 2006

I Hate it When Dad is Right

Study finds cell-phone use raises risk of brain tumor

STOCKHOLM, Sweden — The use of cell phones over a long period of time can raise the risk for brain tumors, a new Swedish study concluded on Friday, contradicting the conclusions of other researchers.

The Dutch Health Council, in an overview of research from around the world, last year found no evidence that radiation from cell phones and TV towers was harmful. A four-year British survey released in January showed no link between regular, long-term use of cell phones and the most common type of tumor.

However, researchers at the Swedish National Institute for Working Life said they looked at the cell phone use of 905 people between the age of 20 and 80 who had been diagnosed with a malignant brain tumor and found a link.
"A total 85 of these 905 cases were so-called high users of mobile phones; that is, they began early to use mobile and or wireless telephones and used them a lot," the study said.

"The study also shows that the rise in risk is noticeable for tumors on the side of the head where the phone was said to be used," it added.

Kjell Mild, who led the study, said the figures meant that heavy users of cell phones, for instance, or who make cell phone calls for 2,000 hours or more in their lives, had a 240 percent increased risk for a malignant tumor on the side of the head where the phone is used.

"The way to get the risk down is to use hands-free," Mild told Reuters.

He said his study was the biggest yet to look at long-term users of the wireless phone, which has been around in Sweden in a portable form since 1984, longer than in many other countries.

Deeper thoughts.

Originally uploaded by littledevilworks.
Why does deodorant have an expiration date?

Deep thoughts.

Sometimes I think I could run my office.

Then sometimes I wonder why I would want to.

Horoscope Heaven

Recently I have been asked to take on the Summer Intern project at work. This means coordinating all the summer interns (30+) and ensuring that they're ready to go this summer (HR paperwork, computers, building space, etc.)

I had a meeting this morning with HR to go over everything and make sure I have all my ducks in a row. When I got back to my desk I found this in my daily horoscope:

Some VIPs have taken notice of how indispensable you are, so keep up the good work, no matter how tempting it is to coast on your current momentum. They'll definitely appreciate your redoubled efforts.

Now let's just hope this translates to a promotion!

Thursday, March 30, 2006

Another Mantra

I'm about to make a sign at my desk that says:

I'd rather be knitting.

Any questions?

Bad Kitty. Very Bad Kitty.

Crazy Cat Terrorizes Connecticut Town

FAIRFIELD, Conn. - Residents of the neighborhood of Sunset Circle say they have been terrorized by a crazy cat named Lewis. Lewis for his part has been uniquely cited, personally issued a restraining order by the town's animal control officer.

"He looks like Felix the Cat and has six toes on each foot, each with a long claw," Janet Kettman, a neighbor said Monday. "They are formidable weapons."

The neighbors said those weapons, along with catlike stealth, have allowed Lewis to attack at least a half dozen people and ambush the Avon lady as she was getting out of her car.

Some of those who were bitten and scratched ended up seeking treatment at area hospitals.

Animal Control Officer Rachel Solveira placed a restraining order on him. It was the first time such an action was taken against a cat in Fairfield.

In effect, Lewis is under house arrest, forbidden to leave his home.

Solveira also arrested the cat's owner, Ruth Cisero, charging her with failing to comply with the restraining order and reckless endangerment.

P.S. Is this kind of like that movie "The Birds"?
P.P.S. To adopt a slightly more loveable creature check out Pinky.

Wednesday, March 29, 2006

Funny funny woman.

In the past 24 hours I have:

* Contemplated adding more school to the future by exploring what it would take to get an M.S. in Statistics in addition to my MBA.

* Bought more yarn for more projects.

To combat the insanity I have:

* Had to eat birthday cake twice in a row (Chocolate calms all women!)

* Chattered on endlessly to the fiance.

I hope you will all join me in wishing him luck in dealing with this crazy woman forevermore.

P.S. But I did do half an hour and 1.5 miles on the treadmill today.

My new Mantra.

You can't judge a book by its cover, but you can judge a yarn by its color.

There's an anonymous for EVERYTHING!

Workaholics struggle to say 'No' to work

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Sam used to sneak into his office before dawn so no one would know how many extra hours he worked. Charles goes on all-night work binges to meet deadlines, and Susan can't say no to volunteer projects, social clubs, bridge games, choral singing, lectures and classes.

Each one is a member of Workaholics Anonymous, a 12-step recovery program for compulsive workers based upon the structure of Alcoholics Anonymous. Each one opted to keep their identity secret.

"It's been called the addiction that society applauds," said Mike, a physician and member of the group known as WA.

"People brag about it and say, 'I'm a workaholic,'" he said. "But workaholics burn out and then you've lost them or they become very dysfunctional and bitter and cynical in the organization and corrosive."

Workaholics Anonymous keeps no central count of members, but organizers estimate dozens of weekly meetings are held in the United States as well as in Germany, Switzerland, Austria and Britain. The group also sells about 100 books about WA a month via its Web site, according to organizers.

Tuesday, March 28, 2006

Overheard at work.

"She may be a moron by she's MY moron!"

Things that make me happy.

* Chocolate birthday cake with sugary icing.
* Vanilla ice cream.
* Fresh Strawberries
* Getting to go home in 1 hour and 30 minutes.
* Getting to watch tv, knit, do graphic design projects and chat with my fiance tonight.

Email at Work

Me: Mr. Boss has asked me to reschedule your lunch appointment with him tomorrow (for the 12th time).

Lunch Appointment: Aw Poopers.

Me: Eloquently put and exactly how I felt when he told me. Thanks for being understanding.

Question of the day.

Does a nap count as an AAR (After Action Review) to lunch?

Monday, March 27, 2006

I think I'm on the wrong list.

Originally uploaded by littledevilworks.
You know you've done it. Bought that one item you shouldn't have. Spent a little too much. Gone out of your price range/usual shopping area/comfort zone. And you've landed on a mailing list you shouldn't have.

I read the fashionistas - Amazing Amy and Amalah. I stop by Sephora every now and then. And I keep up with my celebrity gossip - I know what's hot and what's not according to Trent.

But let's face it. I'm more of a Nine West girl, an Express girl. I'm a bought-it-on-sale-at-a-bebe-store-at-an-outlet-mall kind of girl. I'm not a french parfum kind of girl, I'm really more of a Charlie by Revlon girl. I'm not a MAC girl, I'm a whatever-looks-good-at-the-drug-store kind of girl. I'm a get-my-hair-highlighted-at-a-fancy-salon-followed-by-6-months-of-Supercuts-trims kind of girl. I'm a get-my-nails-done-at-the-cheapest-place-that-looks-remotely-hygienic-and-fixes-her-nails-with-Elmer's-glue type of girl. (Yes I really did.) You get the point.

Today the Barneys New York catalogue arrived. Filled with shoes. Nothing. But. The. Shoes. And not a single pair under $400. Most ranging between $700 to $1500.

PEOPLE: I sat on a COUCH this weekend at Macy*s Furniture Gallery that was $699. And I would sit my ass on that every day for the next 5-10 years.

Dear Barneys -

You've got the wrong girl. Save yourself the glossy brochure and the postage. I'm too low class for you.

Love and kisses and cute little DSW shoes,


Me: You sleep well and we'll talk tomorrow. I love you.

Wes: Love you too sweety. And I DO miss you already. Just in case you were wondering.

Me: I figured you were a little too tired to notice yet. I figured tomorrow would be PRIME missing day. It's hard to miss the girl when you're concentrating on holding your eyes open with soup spoons.

Wes: No. I didn't sleep well for the few hours I got last night... I realized why this morning. I was so tired I didn't stay awake long each time, but I kept waking up every 20 to 30 minutes with the feeling I had lost something.

USC in the News!

Professor charged with swindling students

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - A business professor at the University of Southern California was arrested on Friday by the FBI on charges of swindling students and others in a real estate fraud, the U.S. Attorney's Office said.

Barry Landreth, who had taught real estate finance and development at the university, stole at least $1.5 million (860,000 pounds) in the first 10 months of 2005, telling students and other investors he would buy land in Chicago and Las Vegas and then sell it for large profits, an FBI affidavit said.

Instead, he transferred all the money into his personal account without buying the land, the FBI said.

Landreth was arrested at his home, where he kept a stable of show horses.

The university said in a statement Landreth had worked part-time at the school. Most recently, he taught a course in the Marshall School of Business and was currently on administrative leave.

Good phone.

Dial N for naked.

LONDON (Reuters) - Up to a third of telephone users in Britain make calls in the nude, with men more prone to do it without clothes than women, a survey revealed on Thursday.

Research commissioned by Britain's Post Office, which offers a fledgling home phone service, revealed that 40 percent of men admitted to nattering naked compared with 27 percent of women. The results were based on a survey of 1,500 telephone users.

The research also showed that people were so busy that one in 10 people admitted to wandering off and leaving the caller talking to themselves.

Things like this don't happen in California.

"I don't know what happened here. The screen is missing from the dormer window and the BB gun is on the floor in the alcove."

Now I love Wes' family, but what the hell was his mom's boyfriend doing?

Sunday, March 26, 2006

Leavin' on a jet plane.

Originally uploaded by littledevilworks.
This morning, I reluctantly took Wes back to the airport. There's nothing I hate more than sending him back to Kansas again and having to come home to an empty apartment knowing that tonight I have to go to bed alone. The only bright spot is that we booked a return ticket for him for mid-May, so this separation will at least be fairly short.

We had a good time this past week, even though we mostly laid low and relaxed. Yesterday we slept late and he made me french toast with strawberries and scrambled eggs for breakfast. (and let me sleep in while he cooked!) Then we curled up and watched Hotel Rwanda. Then we went out and wandered the mall for a few hours, windowshopping for everything from clothes and shoes to couches for our future home. Then we had some dinner and came home and curled up together for the night. Nothing special or exciting, but wonderful time to just be with each other and ingore the outside world.

But I digress. Time to get back to all those things I've been putting off since before my trip, and time to focus for the rest of the semester. And tomorrow is another Monday - what's up with that?

Friday, March 24, 2006


Hooah Bar
Originally uploaded by littledevilworks.
A while back I posted this article. I also sent it around on company email since we're an army-funded research center. Well our facilities guy thought it would be cool to stock them. The first case arrived today and I got to sample the wares. The chocolate crispy ones are quite tasty.

One Shot Devil


People Iced:Eighteen
Car Bombs Planted:Four
Favorite WeaponShank
Arms Broken:Three
Eyes Gouged:Thirty
Tongues Cut Off:Ten
Biggest Enemy:Joey Big-Lips

Get Your HITMAN Name

Of midgets or little people.

Watching an incredibly bad movie last night, the fiance and I were reminded of our younger days when strange films with midgets found their way into our cinematic lives.

Mine was a film out of Zaire about life in the Congo. For some French midget loving, check out La Vie Et Belle.

If I could find my own dipstick...

Are you a jobernowl? Dictionary has answer.

LONDON, England (Reuters) -- Ian Brookes is trying to rescue the zoozoo from extinction.

Brookes is not an environmentalist partial to the wood pigeon, but instead editor of the Chambers Dictionary, and is seeking to keep words from disappearing in the publisher's next edition which is slated for release in August.

"We've resisted the temptation for tossing words out," he said Monday at the London Book Fair.

Also on the save list are: jobernowl (blockhead), logodaedalus (someone skilled in the manipulative use of words), incompossible (incapable of co-existing) and supernaculum (to the last drop), the kinds of words typically omitted by one-volume dictionaries once they fall out of usage.

The Chambers Dictionary, published in Scotland, is favored by puzzlers, writers and language-lovers for its pithy approach, such as defining "eclair" as a cake long in shape but short in duration.

Brookes also sees a market for its antiquarian approach in a culture taken with yesteryear, evidenced by widespread enthusiasm for old buildings and genealogy.

"We've decided to provide a kind of museum of language," Brookes said.

Thursday, March 23, 2006

Back to Normal

In the spirit of getting back to normal (whatever "normal" is), here are the movies I have seen recently:

(Just remember there are 16+ hours on the flights to and from Singapore)

* Shopgirl - This was, without a doubt, my favorite movie of the whole trip. I've never been a huge Claire Danes fan (and the celebrity gossip in me hates her for stealing Billy Crudup from Mary Louise Parker when she was 7 months pregnant with their child, but I digress....) but she and Steve Martin were amazing together in this film. A quirky, sometimes happy sometimes sad film about how confusing it is to live life and find love.

* Capote - Phillip Seymour Hoffman deserved all the accolades he received for this incredible movie. Catherine Keener was a beautiful and excellent Harper Lee and I really enjoyed learning more about the lives of both authors. I'm jonesing for some Capote literature now.

* Good Night and Good Luck - This was really a fascinating movie, extremely well acted and directed. I really enjoyed George Clooney, Robert Downey, Jr., Patricia Richardson and of course David Strathairn.

* Pride & Prejudice - While this movie was well done, I have to say that I really prefer the Colin Firth BBC version or the 1940 version starring Greer Garson as Elizabeth Bennett and Laurence Olivier as Mr. Darcy. Regardless, it was a pretty good version of a timeless classic.

* Rent - I'm sure I drove my seatmate nuts bopping along to the music. I thought the movie was ok, but I think I liked the stage version a lot better. Some parts are better left to the imagination, rather than illustrated on the screen.

* Elizabethtown - I wasn't expecting too much, so I wasn't disappointed. This had a few humorous parts, but mostly I discovered yet again that I really don't think much of Kirsten Dunst. (Even if she does have the same last name as The King I know.)

* The Incredibles - Fun fun! The perfect plane movie.

* The Wedding Crashers - Wes and I Netflixed this one last night and I have to say it was hysterical, and sick, and wrong. Definitely good solid entertainment!

Wednesday, March 22, 2006

25 Things you would like to say out loud at work (but can't!)

1. "I can see your point, but I still think you're full of crap."

2. "I don't know what your problem is, but I'll bet it's hard to pronounce."

3. "How about never? Is never good for you?"

4. "I see you've set aside this special time to humiliate yourself in public"

5. "I'm out of my mind, but feel free to leave a message."

6. "I don't work here. I'm a consultant."

7. "It sounds like English, but I can't understand a damn word you're saying"

8. "Ahhh... I see the screw-up fairy has visited us again."

9. "I'm already visualizing the duct tape over your mouth."

10. "Thank you. We're all refreshed and challenged by your unique point of view."

11. "The fact that no one understands you doesn't mean you're an artist."

12. "Any connection between your reality and mine is purely coincidental."

13. "What am I? Flypaper for freaks?"

14. "Yes, I am an agent of Satan, but my duties are largely ceremonial."

15. "This isn't an office. It's Hell with fluorescent lighting."

16. "Sarcasm is just one more service we offer."

17. "If I throw a stick, will you leave?"

18. "Errors have been made. Others will be blamed."

19. "Whatever kind of look you were going for, you missed."

20. "A cubicle is just a padded cell without a door."

21. "Can I trade this job for what's behind door #1?"

22. "Too many freaks, not enough circuses."

23. "Chaos, panic, and disorder - my work here is done."

24. "How do I set a laser printer to stun?"

25. "Oh I get it... like humor... but different."

Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Culture Shock, Jet Lag and other Assorted Thoughts

I was only out of the country 10 days, and yet when I arrived back at LAX on Sunday I felt like I had been gone a good long time.

While abroad I barely kept up with the news. When I did, I watched local Asian feeds. I knew about the cyclone in Australia. I heard many sides to the debate over Prime Minister Thaksin's running of Thailand and whether or not he should continue after he dissolved Parliament two weeks ago. I heard about Bird Flu in Asia. And I heard a totally different take on the Iraqi war. But I never heard anything American.

While abroad we relied exclusively on public transportation. Mostly we were on buses and subways, occasionally a taxi. I didn't drive for 10 days.

While abroad we visited countries that are more tolerant than our own. There was no racism, only people working side by side. We saw so many different cultures mesh together in ways that America, that great "melting pot", doesn't.

Arriving home everything feels different. I've woken up many times in the last two nights where my bed feels softer and the comforter warmer. After sweating in tropical heat, I am shivering in 40 degree temperatures and rain. I'm surrounded by my cell phones and email and cars and people speaking in English and what felt so normal to me only 10 days ago feels slightly foreign to me now.

Yesterday I was sluggish all day, yet at midnight I was wide awake. Only upon lying in bed and trying to sleep did it occur to me that I was jetlagged - of course I was wide awake and hungry at midnight, it was 3pm in Thailand.

Before I left, I was very anxious about the trip. I was worried that I wasn't travelling with friends, and as always, I was afraid of the unknown. Now all I can think about are the phrases that I learned while there, the history and culture that I enjoyed so much, and how soon I might be able to grab Wes and go back. I miss the food, I miss the exploring on the streets, and I miss the sense of freedom I got away from every day life. Who knew?

Monday, March 20, 2006


Originally uploaded by littledevilworks.
On Tuesday night we left Singapore headed for Bangkok, Thailand. Once there, we checked into the Intercontinental Hotel. This hotel was excellent - orchids on the pillows at turndown, amazing buffets for breakfast and lunch, and fabulous service. The dragon here adorns the roof top pool and overlooks the entire city.

Thailand was a completely different experience from Singapore. Whereas Singapore was very Westernized, Thailand was in many respects a melding of modern and the more traditional. There was very little English spoken, and everything was written in Thai script which is beautiful, but wholly undecipherable to a non-speaker (with 26 vowels alone, the language is very complex!) The city boasted extremely modern areas filled with skyscrapers, but on the outskirts still uses working elephants to accomplish many tasks.

The country is also a mix of liberalism and conservatism - you can make reference to some of the sexual activities and reputations for which Thailand is most commonly known, but you cannot discuss anything relating to the beloved King. Thailand is known as the Land of the Smile, and its people are unfailingly gracious and hard-working. Racial tensions don't exist, primarily because the main religion, Buddhism, is very open and tolerant. Thus you see Moslems and Hindus and Buddhists (Arabs and Indians and Thais) living and working side by side as brothers.

Thai Script
Originally uploaded by littledevilworks.
We didn't have a lot of free time in the city until Saturday, as much of our time was spent visiting companies in the city. Many time we had occasion to avoid the gridlocked traffic (worse than LA!) and use the BRT, a clean, quick and effective subway. Here are a few of the billboards with Thai script that we saw everywhere.

Spirit House
Originally uploaded by littledevilworks.
Another thing we noticed wandering the city were the spirit houses everywhere. The Thai people believe in ghosts and spirits. Whenever you build on property in Thailand, you must erect a spirit house on the property where the spirits that dwell there can live. Even in the poorest areas, properties and homes have spirit houses in the front yards, decorated with ribbons and gold leave, and the Thais leave offerings of fruit, incense, candles and flowers at the houses.

Decorated Trees
Originally uploaded by littledevilworks.
The Thai also love to decorate nature areas with ribbons and flowers as can be seen in this tree.

Saturday was our main touring day in Bangkok. Our wonderful tour guides arranged a day of walking and bussing around the city to see all the sights.

We began in Bangkok's Chinatown by seeing the Golden Budhha.

Flower Market
Originally uploaded by littledevilworks.
After the Golden Buddha, our tour guide led us through the flower and fruit markets. Because Thailand is in such a tropical area, the flowers there are amazingly gorgeous. Everywhere you looked, street upon street, there were fresh flowers and women making garlands and boquets for homes or offerings.

Amazing colors.
Originally uploaded by littledevilworks.
The whole market was fragrant with so many different kinds of flowers and fresh fruits. Here you could buy strawberries and guavas and mangos by the pound, and people cooked satay and fish and noodles on open grills.

The Grand Palace
Originally uploaded by littledevilworks.
Next stop on our tour was the Grand Palace of the King. The Grand Palace sits on the Chao Praya River, and is comprised of many, many buildings encrusted with gold and jewels. The red and green and blue rooves dot the 60 acre property, and statues and ornaments fill every nook and cranny.

The Grand Palace
Originally uploaded by littledevilworks.
The Grand Palace is also home to the Emerald Buddha which is located within the larger building in the background. Inside you can sit on the floor and medidate with the monks, or just enjoy the peace and quiet.

The Grand Palace is the summer home of the King of Thailand, but today mostly serves to house foreign dignitaries and visitors.

Canal Life
Originally uploaded by littledevilworks.
After the Grand Palace, we walked over to the Chao Praya to take a river and canal cruise.

Life on the canal varies from the very rich to the very poor. We saw numerous rickety shacks that looked like they would barely hold together, as well as richly developed properties that the guides informed us were worth millions of dollars. It was a sad contrast between the rich and the poor in Thailand, where the national average income is approximately equal to 100 American dollars per month.

The Floating Market
Originally uploaded by littledevilworks.
On the canal cruise we also had the opportunity to see a floating market. This is where the locals meet to purchase food and chat. Many dock their boats and climb aboard the floating platform; still others pull their boat along side the market and eat there.

My photographs don't do it's immense size justice, but this is just a part of the Grand Palace from the Chao Praya River.

All in all, Thailand was amazing. I loved being immersed in the culture, even though at times it was scary being in a place where I couldn't even understand the simplest parts of language. I had gone to Thailand with some fear for my safety and where I would be able to eat, but what I learned is that it was a beautiful country, rich in history and kindness, and I would definitely return to enjoy more massages, amazing food and fun shopping.

My first socks!
Originally uploaded by littledevilworks.
P.S. No trip is complete without a little knitting. For this trip I opted for something small and light - socks! Not bad for my first attempt, I give you the Thailand Sock (on the left) and the Singapore Sock (on the right).


Originally uploaded by littledevilworks.
I've decided to break my trip entries into two parts, one for each place we stayed.

We arrived in Singapore on Saturday, March 11 at 6:20am after an 18.5 hour flight. We checked into the Pan Pacific hotel. The accomodations were nice, but I wouldn't recommend the hotel for the food, which was only so-so. Then we were free to explore the city for the weekend.

The thing that left me a little disappointed about Singapore was how Westernized it truly was. Singapore was colonized by the British and is a relatively young nation state. Everything is in English as it is the spoken language, even though the population is approximately 80% Chinese. The Singaporeans also have a fondness for shopping malls - everywhere you go is a metro station that lets out into a mall. The prices are expensive, the brands are the big labels you find in places like Beverly Hills.

So the first day we started off in Chinatown. We arrived about 10am in 80 degree heat and humidity. Gotta love the tropics.

Clark Quay
Originally uploaded by littledevilworks.
After Chinatown, we hopped on the Metro and headed down to Clark Quay on the Singapore River.

Singapore is a small island, approximately 27 miles east to west, and 15 miles north to south. It is bisected roughly east to west by the Singapore River.

Clark Quay is a neat area full of restaurants, bars and clubs. By day it is a quiet place to sit on the river, or take a river cruise. By night it becomes a big part of the city's nightlife.

Originally uploaded by littledevilworks.
While at Clark Quay we took a river cruise to see the sights. The biggest attraction on this trip was getting to see the Merlion. The Merlion stands at the entrance to Singapore's harbor. Traditionally lions are placed in Asia's gates as a symbol of protection. Singapore also stems from the word Singapura which means Lion.

After the River Cruise we went to Orchard Street, the site of the biggest and best shopping malls. We wandered Orchard Street for quite a while, and then headed back to the hotel to change and get ready for dinner. Dinner was at the hotel's Italian restaurant and then we all fell into bed by 11pm after over 24 hours of travel and awake time.

Elephant in Little India
Originally uploaded by littledevilworks.
Sunday we slept in a little bit and had a quick breakfast and then headed down to Little India. Though I was somewhat disappointed in Chinatown, I loved Little India. We walked for several hours through streets upon streets of shops, flower markets and restaurants. The streets were filled with interesting smells of incense, spices and foreign foods.

Originally uploaded by littledevilworks.
We also wandered Little India until we found one of the larger Indian temples. Out front there were flowers and offerings, and the intricate work on the temple was amazing.

After Little India we wandered back towards the hotel. We found an Indonesian restaurant near the hotel and enjoyed a pretty good meal. Then we opted to try foot massage and reflexology. Though some found it painful, I found it a really good remedy for my sore feet and legs.

The Raffles Hotel
Originally uploaded by littledevilworks.
Sunday night, a big group of us headed to the famous Raffles Hotel. This hotel is an amazing example of British colonial architecture highlighted by Indian influences. It boasts dark wood and a sort of safari feel.

The Raffles is by far the most expensive hotel in Singapore, and locals and mere visitors can't get a room there. The hotel is reserved for visiting dignitaries and guests of the government.

The other reason the hotel is famous is for the Long Bar which serves the famous Singapore Sling. We all had to have our Singapore Slings. I have to tell you - it was the most expensive spiked Koolaid I've ever drunk!

The rest of our time in Singapore was spent visiting and touring companies and exploring the city. Though we had a good time, we all looked forward to having fun in Thailand.

Home Again!

And exhausted. For those of you that can't wait I have posted a set of my photos here. Unfortunately, I'm cheap enough that I can only upload so many photos per month on Flickr, so I'll either have to upgrade or add more next month, but there are a bunch of my favorites and should give you a taste of the trip.

Narrative to accompany the pictures will be forthcoming, but after over 24 hours of travel and still finding myself on the same damn day (gosh darn that date line!) I'm off to bed.

Night night!

Friday, March 17, 2006

One Night in Bangkok

Intercontinental Bangkok
Originally uploaded by littledevilworks.
Sa-wat dee ka! (Hello from Thailand!)

Just wanted to blog and say I am still alive and LOVING my travels through Asia, particularly Thailand. I just got back from an evening at a local Thai restaurant (off the beaten path). There was curry and Pad Thai and many other delectables, as well as some Tiger beer (the only beer I have ever enjoyed drinking!)

I just decided to venture the business center and was seated immediately and brought ice cold bottled water and some little pastries. I could get used to this.

Anyway, I hope this little message finds you all well and enjoying your week. I have a few more days here and then will spend some time writing many entries and posting many photos.

Today's horoscope seemed oddly appropriate:

Branch out and try some exotic delicacies. Attend art exhibits, book signings and out-of-the-way cultural events. Enjoy and indulge in the new and the sublime, and you'll enjoy each day to its fullest.

Thursday, March 09, 2006

Off to see the Wizard.

SE Asia
Originally uploaded by littledevilworks.
That's it folks. I'm off to Singapore and Thailand for 10 days. I doubt I'll be posting while I'm gone, but I promise to take lots of pictures to post upon my return.

Enjoy the next few weeks and try not to miss me too much!

Hollywood and All That Jazz

Grey's Anatomy
Originally uploaded by littledevilworks.
So last night was the one night a year where I become a bumbling idiot and wander among the stars in Beverly Hills.

My mom currently works for the Alzheimer's Association of Los Angeles, and that gets me entry into their annual fundraiser, "Night At Sardi's" at the famous Beverly Hills Hotel.

Some of the stars I saw last night? William H. Macy, Chandra Wilson (Bailey on Grey's Anatomy), Kate Burton (Ellis Grey on Grey's Anatomy), Leah Thompson and Amy Pietz (Caroline in the City), Lanie Kazan, Loretta Devine (Grey's Anatomy and Crash), Peter Gallagher (the OC), and many, many others.

The evening not only celebrates the amazing work that the Alzheimer's Association does in both caring for those who are afflicted with this horrible disease and fundraising more than any other private source to fund research to find a cure.

The Alzheimer's Association also honors people for their work with Alzheimers. Last night, they honored Elan Pharmaceuticals for their Research and Development of medications to aid those stricken with neurological diseases like Alzheimers and Parkinson's, The Judy Fund for the difference that one family has made (and over $2 million raised), a local Care Giver who raises money and awareness each year and continues to care for his sweetheart who has the disease, and finally the writers and producers and cast of Grey's Anatomy for their compassionate portrayal of the disease (Meredith's mother, Ellis Grey played by Kate Burton).

It was a wonderful evening - both for the star gazer in me and for an important cause that touches us all in one way or another.

Wednesday, March 08, 2006

The Loving Cup

Absence makes the glass glow fondly

LONDON (Reuters) - Researchers have come up with a novel way to keep long-distance lovers in touch -- high-tech wine glasses that glow warmly however far apart the pining couple are.

When either person picks up a glass, red light-emitting diodes glow on their partner's glass. When one puts a glass to their lips, the other glass glows brightly.

Distance is not a problem as liquid sensors and wireless links have been built in to the glasses.

Jackie Lee and Hyemin Chung, researchers at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology's media lab in Boston, said communal drinking is a vital part of social interaction that lovebirds miss out on when separated.

Lee, whose findings were reported in New Scientist magazine Wednesday, said the wireless glasses really do "help people feel as if they were sharing a drinking experience together."

The loving cups are to be unveiled next month at a conference in Montreal on computer-human interaction.

Vanity and Other Such Nonsense.

I just got trapped in the stairwell without my ID card. We have card key access to all of our floors and I was clearly without access.

Now we've all forgotten our badges here before and had to knock until someone came and rescued us. But I wonder how many times have people been stuck in the stairwell because they purposely didn't wear the ID badge because it didn't go with their outfits?

I guess you know how I ended up there today.

In my defense, I'm dressed up to go to a charity event today. On the other hand, my outfit doesn't have any pockets so I better suck it up and wear the damn badge.

Here Comes the Bride

Bride n Groom
Originally uploaded by littledevilworks.
My best friend just emailed me saying she got engaged on Sunday and they're going to get married in Berlin in a few months before the return to the US (they're studying there for their PhDs)! I'm so excited for her. Congrats!!!

(P.S. I can't help but be a bit jealous though. Still have 884 days to go till our chosen date according to The Knot.)

Tuesday, March 07, 2006

The Glory that is the Internet.

Originally uploaded by littledevilworks.

The Money Man

Since I saw the movie a few weeks ago, I have been grooving to Johnny Cash. My officemate got the Folsom Prison and San Quentin albums and that had me hankering for more. Today the soundtrack to Walk the Line arrived at work and now I'm really bopping along. Joaquin Phoenix and Reese Witherspoon are SO good. They don't sound like Johnny and June, and yet they totally remind me of them.

So apparently I'm not the only one that digs Johnny Cash...check this out.

"Some people call me prolific....

I think I'm just bored."

-Little Devil Works, 2006

Yeah so I posted a few times yesterday. Whatcha gonna do about it?

To continue with the quotes (and y'all know I'm not religious but I just got a kick out of this one!)

"You can safely assume that you've created God in your own image when it turns out that God hates all the same people you do."

-Anne Lamott, writer

Monday, March 06, 2006

Dr. Seuss Taught Me Everything Worth Knowing

"Be who you are and say what you want, because those who mind don't matter and those who matter don't mind."

"Think left and think right and think low and think high. Oh, the thinks you can think up if only you try."

"You have brains in your head.
You have feet in your shoes.
You can steer yourself in any direction you choose.
You're on your own.
And you know what you know.
You are the guy who'll decide where to go."

"Adults are obsolete children."

The Sad State of our Nation

S. Dakota Legislation to Ban Most Abortions

PIERRE, S.D. - Gov. Mike Rounds signed legislation Monday that would ban most abortions in South Dakota, a law he acknowledged would be tied up in court for years while the state challenges the 1973 U.S. Supreme Court decision that legalized abortion.

The bill would make it a crime for doctors to perform an abortion unless the procedure was necessary to save the woman's life. It would make no exception for cases of rape or incest.

The Legislature passed the bill last month after supporters argued that the recent appointment of conservative justices John Roberts and Samuel Alito have made the U.S. Supreme Court more likely to overturn Roe v. Wade.

Under the new law, doctors could get up to five years in prison for performing an illegal abortion.

Kate Looby, state director of Planned Parenthood, said the organization has not yet decided whether to challenge the measure in court or to seek a statewide public vote in November. A referendum would either repeal the abortion ban or delay a court challenge to the legislation.

"Obviously, we're very disappointed that Governor Rounds has sided on the side of politics rather than on the side of the women of South Dakota to protect their health and safety," Looby said.

Look Ma, It's Science!

Study Shows Why We Can't Tickle Ourselves

March 6, 2006 — Healthy humans cannot tickle themselves or attribute their own voices to those of other people, according to a new study that determined that individuals anticipate their own actions, which can beneficially alter their sense of perception.

Since it is now believed that a breakdown in this anticipation process may underlie the delusions of schizophrenics, the finding may lead to a better understanding of this mental disorder. According to the National Institute of Mental Health, around 51 million people worldwide suffer from schizophrenia.

The study also solves the long-standing mystery as to why most humans and animals cannot tickle themselves.

"It's well known that you can't tickle yourself," said Randy Flanagan, one of the study's authors. "One explanation is that since all the sensations are completely predictable, we do 'sensory attenuation,' which reduces our touch perception."

Oh no they didn't. OH YES THEY DID!

Originally uploaded by littledevilworks.
Runaway Bride Bobblehead Dolls Go Quickly

DULUTH, Ga. - Like the woman who inspired their creation, Runaway Bride bobblehead dolls disappeared quickly during a sports promotion in her home town.

The dolls, given to the first 1,000 people through the doors at the Gwinnett Gladiators hockey game Sunday afternoon, were gone in about 10 minutes.

"If it wasn't the quickest (giveaway), it's pretty close to it," Doug Augis, the team's ticket sales director, told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

The 5-inch doll caused a "huge spike" in ticket sales, Augis said. Fans of hockey, kitsch and profit lined up more than three hours before the gates opened.

The team wryly advised that any similarity to an actual person, such as Duluth resident Jennifer Wilbanks, was "purely coincidental."

Quote of the Night

"Bjork couldn't be here tonight. ... She was trying on her Oscar dress and Dick Cheney shot her."

--Jon Stewart

Sunday, March 05, 2006

Weekend Accomplishments

Originally uploaded by littledevilworks.
To Do:

  • Take home midterm - CHECK!
  • Felt another bag - CHECK!
  • Clean apartment - 3/4 Check, need to finish the kitchen, vacuum and mop!
  • Pack for trip - 1/2 Check.
  • Celebrate Mom's birthday - CHECK! Happy Birthday Mommy!
  • Watch Academy Awards - CHECK! Yea for Reese Witherspoon and Crash!
  • Get ready to go back to work - NEVAH. Nope, Not at all. No way. No how. Can my mommy write me a note?

Crashing parties with the best of 'em.

Originally uploaded by littledevilworks.
Want to party crash the Oscars? Take a lobster

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - If you want to crash the glitziest party of all, the Oscars, here's a tip from a professional: Show up at the theatre, dressed as a chef carrying a live lobster, looking really concerned.

So says Alex Mamlet, one of America's self-professed top party crashers, who turned his exploits into an award-winning short film "Kid Protocol."

"A never-fail technique is showing up in a chef outfit with a food item, looking really concerned. Security will always let you in," Mamlet said in an interview. "The more outrageous the food item, the more likely they are to let you in."

Mamlet, who has hobnobbed with everyone from director Stephen Spielberg to actor Tom Cruise, says he has used the chef routine with plates of bananas and exotic fruits and, on more than one occasion, a live lobster.

It's not easy being green.

littledevilworks --

A brand of soylent green breakfast cereal

'How will you be defined in the dictionary?'

Saturday, March 04, 2006

Camels, Flags and Lots and Lots of Sand.

That would be the summary of this evening's movie date. I haven't reported in a while so here goes:

Lawrence of Arabia - This one isn't for the faint of heart. Coming in at just under 4 hours this classic was fairly enjoyable for the first couple of hours, but seemed to switch courses approximately halfway through, as it explored the tale of one Englishman in Arabia. The most interesting part of the movie is that it's based on a true story. I would check it out if you never have. (Yes classics are things that everyone talks about and no one actually watches, but educate yourself!) (And just in case you're wondering - the movie is long enough to complete a knitting project!)

Ladies in Lavender - This was a really touching movie starring Dame Judi Dench and Maggie Smith. It's definitely a chick flick, but it's a bittersweet tale of a man who barely surives a shipwreck and lands on the coast of England. Two elderly women take him into their home, and one takes him into her heart. I really enjoyed the movie, even though the ending was bittersweet. I'd reccomend this one.

Remains of the Day - One of those movies with an excellent cast and something I'd always heard talked about. Now I understand why my father came home and said "what the heck was the point?" Really, an interesting movie and great acting, but absolutely no discernible point to justify the few hours you spent watching it. Feel free to chime in and tell me what I missed. (And no I didn't fall sleep, honey.)

Intimate Games - I just don't have words for this one. Somehow or another the fiance and I ended up on an odd recommendation string. If you enjoy weird 70's sexual (vaguely porn, a la Deepthroat) with out of whack soundtracks, then go for it. Otherwise, spare yourself. It was a decent laugh though.

Friday, March 03, 2006

Girls in White Dresses with Blue Satin Sashes

These are a few of my favorite search terms:

How do tamagotchis get married? - I just don't have a snappy comeback for this. I'm anti-pet, and weird beepy fake pets count in that.

Singapore cats - Is this like "them swinging Singapore cats?" I'm off to Singapore next week but I'm not into cats. See above. Besides, I'm more looking forward to them Singapore Slings.

Naked pizza - Hmmm two of my favorite things, but I'm not sure about combining them. I'm not much for sex with food, and pizza that is naked is probably without the cheese. What's the point?

Garrison Keilor Hollywood Bowl - Cool. Not sure how I drew that, but I'll go see him if he's playing there.

devil ducky madonna gorillaz - I know where each of those terms came from individually. Who was looking for them all together and why?

***I HATE HATE HATE the Sound of Music. Why it popped into my head I really don't know, but I don't plan on letting it happen again.


Originally uploaded by littledevilworks.
This is been sort of a rough week. Work has been pretty stressful and not altogether happy, and I'm a little panicked in my preparations to leave town. I'm also finding all sorts of knitting blogs and projects I want to undertake and am frustrated I can't just retire now and knit all day. :)

Regardless, it's weekend and I've got some relaxing planned. And the Oscars are Sunday night! Let the fashion gossipping begin.

P.S. It's actually raining here today so I think this is pretty appropriate.

An American Institution.

There are many times in life to avoid the Post Office. Mother's Day, the Christmas Season and Tax Season are a few that come to mind. But this was just this morning, a plain and slightly rainy day in the middle of March.

  • 9:15am - Arrive at the Post Office with package slip.
  • 9:23am - After waiting in line for a few minutes, step out of line to the package pickup window.
  • 9:30am - Get informed that the package pickup window isn't operating today. Get back into line.
  • 9:45am - Man 12 people behind me proceeds to package pickup window, kibitzes with postal worker and picks up package. Same postal worker disappears into back room - the black hole of the post office.
  • 10:00am - Ooo finally my turn. Postal worker takes my ID and package slip in search of package.
  • 10:10am - No sign of my friend the postal worker, or my driver's license.
  • 10:15am - No sign of my friend. Decide to fill out a vacation hold application since I can't leave.
  • 10:25am - Still no sign of my friend or my driver's license. Wonder if it's his lunch break already or if I should commit hari kari in the post office.
  • 10:31am - Emerges with my package. These Thin Mints from my soon to be niece better be damn good!

Thursday, March 02, 2006

A little bit of me.

Word Cloud
Originally uploaded by littledevilworks.

Some People's Kids

Bubble Gum
Originally uploaded by littledevilworks.
Boy sticks gum on valuable painting

DETROIT (Reuters) - Painter Helen Frankenthaler's landmark abstract work "The Bay" just got a little more abstract -- to the dismay of Detroit museum officials.

A 12-year-old boy visiting the Detroit Institute of Arts with his school group on Friday stuck a wad of chewing gum on the painting, which is worth an estimated $1.5 million, the Detroit Free Press said.

The barely chewed Wrigley's Extra Polar Ice gum left a residue stain about the size of a quarter in the lower left-hand corner of the painting, the newspaper said.

Wednesday, March 01, 2006

Spank the Monkey

Words just cannot express how incredibly bizarre and wrong this is. Your office will never be the same again.

Darwin Awards - Part the Umpteenth

Problems with his pasport...

NICOSIA (Reuters) - You might have the best forgery skills in the world, but it is not much use if you cannot spell.

A Cyprus court jailed Pakistani national Fazal Ur Rehman for eight months for forgery after police spotted spelling mistakes on stamps on an Afghan passport he was carrying -- otherwise it was a near-perfect copy, the Cyprus Mail said Wednesday.

"Ministry" was spelled "Menistry" and the first "n" was missing from government, the newspaper said.

"The passport looked perfect and professionally made ... almost deemed original by forensics," a police officer told a magistrate in the Cypriot capital Nicosia.

Overheard/Typed at Work

Friend: Good day so far?
Me: Not really. You can check my blog. It's like checking the weather to see what it will be like outside before you step in it.

You know it's time for a new job when...

Your boss makes you go out and get him lunch.

This is what a college education and 2 years of graduate school seems to earn you folks....