Newspaper Outsourcing Editing to India

Now here's a fabulous idea.

Because outsourcing customer service call centers have been such a great success...

I know *I'm* always thrilled beyond measure after hanging up from a 3 hour conversation with an overseas, non-English-speaking CSR.

Good call.


I Can't Wait.


It's official...

I'm 6 months pregnant today.

That's very exciting.

I want a cracker.


I hate Windows Vista.

Windows Vista BITES.

I have three computers at work that are cursed with the dreaded Vista OS, and NONE of them ever work...

They especially love to crash just before a church service, sending me scrambling up long flights of stairs to the balcony (lemme tell ya, THAT'S fun when one is 6 months pregnant!) to rescue the computer operator and contol-alt-delete my way through a panic attack...

I HATE Vista. I hate it more than I hate the devil.

Bill Gates should be ashamed of himself for releasing such a shoddy product. It's worse than Windows ME, and that's saying something. I really want to sue him for pain and suffering... Vista constantly interferes with my JOB, makes ME look bad to my superiors, and never works when I need it to. My job performance suffers constantly because of this piece of crap.

I HATE Vista. I hate Windows. I hate Microsoft. Make a product that works, and I'll reconsider.

It's reason 7834212 why I'm a Mac girl.

/end rant.


Snails are faster than Kerrville residents...

I'm learning to navigate through life in Kerrville, slowly but surely. Really, more slowly than surely, because I'm learning that EVERYTHING in this town is done slowly. Like, death-crawl-slowly. Like, I-want-to-tear-my-eyeballs-out-slowly.

Today, I grabbed Punky from VBS and we were going to take my lunch hour to go to Wendy's and then to Wal-Mart. I'm pretty much already over the whole old people driving in slow motion thing, so getting there wasn't bad. We decided to eat inside Wendy's, something I rarely do, but I didn't want to sit in the Walmart parking lot and eat in the car. We went inside, stood in line, and after literally 10 minutes (and I was only third in line), I finally got up to the front.

Now, during my tenure in line, I noticed people ordering from both registers (I couldn't understand why the line was moving so slow with both registers open, but I did notice the staff behind the counter, numerous though they were, all leisurely strolling through the kitchen. Keep in mind that it was noon, the peak of the lunch hour). I stepped up to the open register, and watched as the staff continued their slow-motion pace. The family who was behind me in line stepped up to the other available register, and a girl immediately walked up to their register and took their order. She looked at me from her register and said, "Hi," and then went back to her order-taking. I stood there, still waiting for someone to come back to the register and take *my* order, since I was there first, but continued to be ignored. After the other family ordered, I said, "Umm, is this register still open?" The girl said, "No," and began to take another order. Umm, okay. So you *saw* me standing there, waiting to order, and you didn't bother to mention that the register... o...k. Sigh.

I stepped behind the people who were ordering at rude girl's register, ordered my food, and then stepped to the side to wait for my order. Most of my order was filled in a miraculous two minutes, but Punky wanted a shake, so we waited. I stood there with my food and watched as an elderly Wendy's employee with very brightly dyed red hair, God love her, slowly began to add the ingredients in his shake, and then she shuffled over to the shake machine and mixed it... slowly (keep in mind that I've now been in line for about 15 minutes. With the drive over to Wendy's, 30 minutes of my lunch hour have now been taken). Then, she slowly put his shake down on the counter next to her, picked up a rag, and began THOROUGHLY cleaning the shake machine. Yeah. From top to bottom. Inside and out. And she was wiping it SLOWLY...savoring every swipe of the rag, probably humming a little tune while she did it. The shake was sitting there next to her on the counter, I was standing there waiting for it, all she had to do was turn around and hand it to me, but no, she decided to pull a Heloise and scour not only the shake machine, but the entire counter surrounding it. Slowly.

At this point, I could feel my chest getting tight, and my breathing becoming shallow, and my blood pressure rising... I toyed with the idea of calling to her and saying, "Ma'am. Ma'am... yes, you, hi. Can I have my shake SO WE CAN EAT OUR FRICKIN' FOOD?!" My eyeballs almost began to shoot blood. But she was old. She was like 70, and she was working at Wendy's. I felt bad. I couldn't berate her for being tidy...

But oh my GOSH!!!! She *finally* turned (slowly) and picked up the shake in her little gnarled hands... and then shuffled SLOWLY over to the other counter, where she gingerly picked up a pair of tongs, got a cherry out of a container, DROPPED IT (I'm about to hyperventilate at this point), got another cherry, put it in the cup, put the lid on (which took another hour), and then shuffled to the counter, where she finally handed me my shake. With a smile. And I resisted the urge to snatch it and run, because I looked into her eyes, and they were kind, and I wanted to cry. She was sweet. She was working at Wendy's. Dangit.

I literally almost collapsed by the time I had the thing in my hands... my nerves were shot. Seriously. 20 minutes after I walked in and stood THIRD PLACE in line, I finally had my food.

We ate and then went to Walmart, which took another 45 minutes to get through... this Walmart here was designed by kindergarteners, apparently, and then I drove back to work, frazzled, my lunch hour over long ago.

I thought Bandera was bad when I lived there... but Kerrville operates on Retired Standard Time. No one is in any hurry to do ANYTHING. I guess I wouldn't be, either, if I had moved to Kerrville to RETIRE... but alas, I live among them, and I will be forced to either slow down and chill out, or I will have a nervous breakdown in about a month.

Just had to share.



I'm resigning myself to the fact:

...that sleeping is going to be merely a nice concept for the next year.

...that no matter how hard I try, I will not be able to resist breads and ice cream during this pregnancy.

...that some people just aren't going to keep in touch, and "busyness" is just an excuse for their lack of interest. However, rekindling old friendships is amazingly easy, and incredibly rewarding, thanks to technology.

...that sleeping in one's contacts is probably not the best idea.

...that someday I will want to write again. Also, I will have time.

...that I really should be playing my cello, and I must get off my duff and practice.

...that both candidates for president have wives that scare the living daylights out of me.

...that, no matter what, I will always crave the wrong things.

...that, in church work, there will always be some who will make it very hard for me to "be Jesus" to them. However, I must constantly remind myself that the three or four who make me cynical do not represent the body of Christ as a whole, and that most people are lovely, beautiful, and caring.


An Open Letter To Aslan

Found this on McSweeney's... thanks, Ed, for the heads-up. Hilarious for those of us Narnia geeks.


- - - -

To His Imperial Majesty, Aslan, the Great Lion, he who rises from uncomfortable and broken stone tables, son of the Emperor-Over-Sea, with extreme respect:

In the course of talking-animal events, it may become necessary for one animal—or human—or divine being—to come and rescue Narnia from its deepest, darkest hours. We're cool with that. We're just saying ...

Why does it have to be kids?

No offense to your wisdom and such, but, frankly, things don't go so well when they show up. Consider the results so far:

Visit 1

1. The illegal immigration of a dangerous terrorist responsible for annihilating the entire population of her previous world, thanks to the direct assistance of these kids.

2. Criminal disruption of a process critical to national security—namely, you, quietly and then gloriously, singing our magical world into existence, and us, quietly and a lot less gloriously, rising up from the mud, which we consider kind of important, if leading to very puzzling questions about our later biology and ecology.

3. And—oh, yeah—the first entrance of evil into Narnia, which transformed it from a place filled with merry singing to a sometimes dark and scary place filled with kidnappings, sacrifice, and war. (However, some of the signers of this letter wish to note that with evil often comes excellent beer, and they like the beer part, so: not entirely a bad thing.)

Visit 2

1. The sudden and terrible arrests of multiple Narnia residents, stemming entirely from the unauthorized visits of a small child to the forest area.

2. The sudden release of multiple dangerous creatures, who, until then, had been safely imprisoned as stone animals.

3. Your own bloody and demoralizing assassination.

4. The destruction of a valuable ancient stone table.

5. A major battle resulting in the injury and death of several Narnian citizens.

6. Restoration of a nonparticipatory monarchy, headed up by four children with limited education and absolutely no civil governing experience.

Visit 3

1. Eruption of war within days.

2. Major destruction of infrastructure, including a valuable bridge.

3. Multiple incidents of public drunkenness.

Visit 4

1. One kid turned into a dragon. Enough said.

Visit 5

1. Complete destruction of a vast and valuable underground city and mining complex.

Seeing the pattern here?

Frankly, we'd be less concerned were it not for our understanding that your true intentions are less to help us and more to help these children understand their own religion, which, we admit, sounds pretty confusing. End result: the kids get a deeply transforming religious experience, and we get left with shit. Excuse our language, but we're basically animals here.

(As a side note, did your foresight ever suggest recording that creation song? Because, from what we've heard from these kids, you could have made enough money from that recording to completely compensate us for the damages, at least financially. We're just saying.)

So, anyway, here's what we're getting at: Send us a hero. Send us a grownup. Send us someone capable of understanding the complex economic structure underlying Narnia, of understanding why destroying our mines is not exactly a major plus. Just stop sending us kids. And consider this message urgent. We understand that something called a last battle might be coming up soon, and we're a bit afraid that if you send us any more helpful kids they'll end up destroying our entire world. Sure, we could end up in some perfect magical mirror of it, but what are the chances of that?

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