Monday, June 29, 2009

My Favorite Things....

Rx Bambi at a Day in the Life....tagged me, waaay back in the day, to list some of my favorite things. If you guys haven't read her blog - you totally have to do so! She has this pharmacy Friday segment where she answers all our questions about drugs. Now although she doesn't explicitly SAY SO, and sometimes says exactly the opposite, I believe that by consulting her blog, it's just as good as if I actually saw a real doctor. I mean, I'm not STUPID, I totally consult WedMD and put in all my symptoms first -- DOOY -- Or, alternatively, I watch TV and find a commercial where people look smiling and happy. Obviously, I gots to get me some of that drug PRONTO!

Back to my task. Naturally, I didn't do my homework (because I'm lazy like that) and now am forced to throw something together half-assedly and the pretend like I've been working on it for WEEKS. As such, I would appreciate just a little bit of courtesy from you all wherein you do not bring up the fact that I totally made all this shit up on the fly.

That's just how I roll.

So here we go:

Favorite Films (or, films I could think of while I wrote this)
  • Anchorman
  • Elf
  • Mama Mia (you heard me...MAMA F'N MIA!)
  • Blazing Saddles
  • A Christmas Story
Favorite Songs
Rx Bambi didn't have to do this - so I'm not doing it either!!! Let me just tell you, however, I ADORE Abba (I think we established that above), Frank Sinatra, Neil Diamond, Billy Joel and Cheap Trick. I will also admit to loving teeny-bopper music: Brittney, Justin Timberlake, Hannah Montana... I gots a lotta crap on my iPod, a lot of which I should really be mocked for.....but don't you judge me! You don't have to listen to it!! It's Josh who actually deserves your pity here people.....

Favorite Music to Listen When...
  • I'm exercising: I don't exercise! What kinda crap is this!?! DID JOSH PUT YOU UP TO THIS!?!?
  • I'm cooking: Whatever is handy. I'm too lazy to go get something special
  • I'm lounging: Frank Sinatra or Neil Diamond
  • I'm by the pool: Whatever someone else puts on - there is NO WAY I am getting out of the pool in my suit! I'll suffer through whatever is on, but will probably bitch about it all the same.
Favorite Crushes
  • Husband - (there was peer pressure to put him first - tee hee) but I SUPPOSE it is accurate
  • Edward Cullen (Twilight) - He totally loves ME and not stupid Liz
  • Stephen Colbert
  • Bill Nye the Science Guy
  • Daniel Craig
Favorite Books
  • Twilight
  • Bright Lights, Big Ass
  • Pride and Prejudice
  • Marley and Me
  • The Caliph's House

Random Favorite Things
  • Two days off in a row where nobody calls you to ask you stupid questions
  • Scuba Diving
  • Little Debbie
  • Camping
  • Kernel & Poods (I really miss my babies!)
Now I'm supposed to tag some others - but I'm not going to do it!!! Because then I'd have to link their blogs, then tell them I tagged them (and then immediately run away in case they get all uppity that they were tagged) and then I'd have to lecture them about due dates and no cheating, and showing their know. It's just a lot more work for me.

Don't you think I've done enough here?!?! My GOD MAN!

I give, and I give, and I give!!!

Sunday, June 28, 2009

You Know What I Hate??

The 4th of July.

You heard me. I HATE IT!

Okay, so you guys all look forward to your upcoming long weekend, cookouts and beer followed by fireworks, right?? Know what I look forward to?? The Embassy's National Day Celebration that totally ruins the 4th of July weekend and a bunch of terrorists making threats so that even if we DID want to have a beer-fest cookout; we couldn't.

So now I'm debating what I'm going to wear to this stupid National Day. The event is outdoors and amazingly enough it is calling for sunny and hot in Sudan that day. So I need to find something that goes with sweat rings. I'm also in the market for some sort of mask to put over my face because any makeup I would put on just falls right off my face like some sort of sad, scary clown.

No wonder foreigners hate us: I'm f'n scaring them!

Anyway, I just thought you should all know - when you are eating your fluffy jello salad made with Sudan no-having whipped cream and fresh berries (also not found in F'n Sudan) that I will be standing in the 120 degree heat, chatting with foreigners, pretending to listen to what they say in return -- probably nodding when they tell me that America Sucks (um-hmm...) and here is why (indeed. Absolutely...what??) and then excusing myself to go get another non-alcoholic drink searching the crowd for any semblance of a non-foreigner, probably settling for a Brit and quickly realizing that they are also not American but at least they get my jokes - or are also in misery and are only pretending to get them - but that's just good enough at these kinds of functions!! You take what you can get!

So, enjoy your holiday weekend. I will be out there sweating in my dress, making aimless chit chat in order to make the world safe for democracy.

And then I'll go home and probably think about finishing my unpacking, but will likely just call Josh up to bitch at him because WHY THE HELL DID WE NEED CAMPING GEAR IN SUDAN!?

Saturday, June 27, 2009

Remember When I was Bitching Before??

Perhaps I should narrow it down just a bit.....When I was bitching about how I didn't have of my stuff and how I really wanted my HHE (household effects) to get here so that I could FINALLY move in? Remember that?

I was wrong. What the hell was I thinking?? I don't need this crap!

Today I spent the entire day unpacking stupid boxes. THE ENTIRE DAY! And THIS is what I STILL have left to unpack.

WTF?! As I unpack box after box of crap and try to find someplace to put stuff, I realize that I actually have not missed having any of this! In fact, for the last three months, I was doing just fine without any of it!

Also, Sudan? Not so big on closets. There literally is not one single closet in this place. NOT ONE! We have some armoires for clothes, but towels, crap, etc....NOTHING. Now I'm going to have to be creative. Maybe make some decorative art out of the medicines and lotions.

Josh, my neat freak, nothing can be out on the kitchen counters hubby, would totally blow a gasket if he were here right now. He'd be out looking for wood so he could build some cupboards so that we could put stuff away!!!

Seriously, not sure where I am going to put all this shit. Normally, I'd have a big ole yard sale, but I am guessing the fugees who live outside the compound in their carboard box-constructed houses aren't going to want my crap either. On the bright side, however, they are probably going to be able to add a second wing with all the boxes and packing materials I'm throwing out here! YOU ARE WELCOME FUGEES!

I wonder if they'll name their guest house the Michel Memorial Wing after they find my body amidst the boxes and packing paper!?

Oh, and as a little valuable lesson for you all - do not attempt to ship chocolate chips into Sudan with the rest of your consumables. Little known fact: Chocolate chips, when exposed to temperatures of upwards of 120 degrees, will melt into one large chocolate mess. Honestly, there really should be some sort of sign posted on the bag. How is anyone supposed to know this stuff?!?!!

Naturally, I have now frozen them into large chocolate blocks. Not so sure what to do with them now. Please, no suggestions to chip off little chips to make cookies. I think we all know I'm too lazy for that!

So, I will attempt to leave work a little early tomorrow so that I can continue my quest to unpack all these damn boxes and/or learn to live with them in the dining room. However, remember how you all commented on how the house looks all stark and hotel-like? Well, I hope you're happy now.

I wonder why I can't get the theme song of Sanford and Son out of my head??

Friday, June 26, 2009

All the Cool Kids are Doing it - And, They're Okay...

I shit you not, I totally used to say that to my mom. It never worked, but I still submit to you that it is a VALID argument. Goes hand in hand with my other mottos -- for problem solving: "ignore it and hope it goes away," for work: "Why the hell would you do your own work if you can (a) find someone else dumb enough to do it for you; and/or (b) find someone who has already done it before and just copy/paste and change happy to glad." which totally goes hand in hand with my other Life- lesson to live by: "if it ain't broke, don't fix it!"

THEREFORE, I clearly know what I am saying when I say that this might be fun - or could be hideously awkward and ruin everything -- could go either way.

So you know how I'm coming home to DC for a TDY (temporary duty - I've really been remiss in my acronym educational program lately) in July, right?? has been suggested (and I have agreed to this suggestion) that we try to meet up. (In DC of course because that is convenient to me and I'm waay to lazy to go anywhere else and (inherent in the TDY part of my trip) I have to work while I'm there. I KNOW, Outrage, right?)

As such, I was thinking we should meet up at the Cheesecake Factory in Tyson's Corner, VA (which is right outside of DC not too far from Dulles Airport) - because it has always been a dream of mine -- not to really meet you guys, but to go to Cheesecake Factory again!

I've already made plans to meet a few of the ones who live in DC, but thought I would open it up to others if they happen to be in the neighborhood at that time too. PLUS, this particular Cheesecake Factory happens to be located in the Galleria Mall (which I like to call the Gucci mall because it houses places like Needless Markup (Neiman Marcus) and some other stores that when I walk in, the sales lady hovers to make sure I don't try to touch any of the merchandise. HOWEVER, right across the street is Tysons I - for my people. The poor people on a government salary.

Minoy has already agreed to go as well - and even though she doesn't have her own blog - she does like to post her blogs in my comment section. What's not to love!?!

So come on! We'll have our own little blog-camp; a pre-BlogHer event. All the cool kids are doing it!!!

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Summary of Life...

I'm kinda not feeling it today - so I'm going to post what My Daddy sent me to help cheer me up. You might have already seen it as it was one of the MANY forwarded emails My Daddy sends me.

SERIOUSLY DAD! Would it kill you to actually WRITE me a letter?? FYI - and back me up here people - FWD's DO NOT COUNT as email contact. Believe me, if they did, I'd totally be all over that!

Mark my words, the day I get some kind of virus that brings my computer down - everyone can blame my father!! He is the great forwarder!! (I Shit you not! As I was typing the preceeding, my damn computer crashed. He totally did it to me. Now my skype doesn't work. He's soooo gonna hear about this!!!)


1) No matter how hard you try, you can't baptize cats...
2) When your Mum is mad at your Dad, don't let her brush your hair.
3) If your sister hits you, don't hit her back. They always catch the second person.
4) Never ask your 3-year old brother to hold a tomato.
5) You can't trust dogs to watch your food.
6) Don't sneeze when someone is cutting your hair.
7) Never hold a Dust-Buster and a cat at the same time.
8) You can't hide a piece of broccoli in a glass of milk.
9) Don't wear polka-dot underwear under white shorts.
10) The best place to be when you're sad is Grandpa's lap.


1) Raising teenagers is like nailing jelly to a tree...
2) Wrinkles don't hurt.
3) Families are like fudge...mostly sweet, with a few nuts
4) Today's mighty oak is just yesterday's nut that held its ground..
5) Laughing is good exercise. It's like jogging on the inside.
6) Middle age is when you choose your cereal for the fiber, not the toy.


1) Growing old is mandatory; growing up is optional..
2) Forget the health food I need all the preservatives I can get.
3) When you fall down, you wonder what else you can do while you're down there.
4) You're getting old when you get the same sensation from a rocking chair that you once got from a roller coaster.
5) It's frustrating when you know all the answers but nobody bothers to ask you the questions.
6) Time may be a great healer, but it's a lousy beautician
7) Wisdom comes with age, but sometimes age comes alone.


At age 4 success is . . .. . not piddling in your pants.
At age 12 success is . . . having friends.
At age 17 success is . . having a driver's license.
At age 35 success is . . .having money.
At age 50 success is . ... . having money.
At age 70 success is . .... . having a drivers license.
At age 75 success is . . .. having friends.
At age 80 success is . . . not piddling in your pants..

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

For Ken

Today a very dear friend of mine passed away. A man who taught me and so many others so much, and who continued to teach and to mentor until the end.

Ken was a wonderful man, a loving father and gave to his country every single day of his life.

I met Ken in Algiers. At that time, he was 76 years old and still loving every minute of every day.

Ken spoke fluent french and used to mock my inability to form coherent sentences. One day I had to call the market to place a large order for chicken for an upcoming pool party at the Embassy. After rehearsing my speech for the order, I heard Ken laughing behind me while I was on the phone. After what should have been a 2 minute call (but took like 10), Ken informed me that I just told that man that I commanded an army of chickens and breasts. (He called them back for me)

Ken talked me into dating my husband, telling me to stop caring about what other people would think and to start listening to what my heart thinks.

Ken would always be my doubles partner in tennis, even though I cannot play to save my life. He taught me how to serve and (almost) how to actually play the game. We (read he) beat the marines at doubles.

Ken helped me raise the orphaned kittens at the Embassy (we named them Cowboy and Indian). He was retired Special Forces, but would patiently feed the kittens baby formula out of a bottle with me.

Ken loved my biscuits and gravy, even though my gravy is not really up to par.

Ken worked until he was 82 years old in service to his country. He was a truly special man that actually believed that he could make a difference. He passed that belief on and touched the lives of everyone he encountered.

You will be missed. God rest your soul.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

So I've Been Thinking...

I kinda think I might wanna be a vegetarian. Okay, let me caveat that because I really seem to heart meat -- I think I might wanna be a vegetarian in the third world. Seriously. Because, ewweeeeee.

WTF is that? (Braja stop reading here....You've seen enough)

I have some basic (foundational) rules when it comes to food -- and believe me, I likes my food - but what I do not like is when my food looks like what it WAS previously, OR (and I never really considered this option before I got here) if it doesn't look like anything you recognize in nature!!

As it turns out, that is ALSO bad.

Sometimes I have a hard time with just plain roasted chicken, because it kinda looks like a little chicken sitting there - but then I remember back as a kid when I had to gather the eggs and those stupid ass chickens would always try to peck me, so I figured out that if I found an egg that was unattended in a nest and then threw it on the ground, all the other chickens would jump down to eat the egg. That place was all Silence of the Chickens up in there!!! Therefore, I don't really feel that sorry for them. Frankly, chickens got it coming.

However, remember that yucky paper sack of innards in the middle?? The one that either makes you gag because you can never get it out because its totally stuck up in there tight and/or the stupid damn paper thing rips and you're forced to go prospecting for shit you don't know why they even put it in there? DOES ANYONE USE THAT? (Anyone besides my dad??) Or, if you're like me - the paper sack of innards that you seem to always forget to take out and then just bake it in there for a tasty surprise of innardy goodness??

Well, here in Sudan, you would be thankful for that damn paper sack - because (and I truly never considered this) when it is not there, the innards are floating around up in that mother! *barf

AND (if you're not all vomitey by this point and still reading this informational post), there IS NO SUCH THING as a boneless chicken breast here. In fact, the part of the chicken that I think might by the breast - has some sort of midget leg (I call it the booblet) growing out of the side of it. So I thought to myself, you MUST be over-reacting, that must not be a boob; it's that other part and the chicken was just a midget - stop being so damn discriminatory! But then I see that there are two legs there.

So my conclusion is: Sudanese chickens have one boob, two legs and a booblet. Frankly, I shudder to think what the hell they look like running around. I will do some research via field work.

Stay tuned for more updates on this mystery.

Monday, June 22, 2009

Kindle Taught me a Valuable Lesson About Sucking Up Proactively

So, I'm going to tell about what I discovered on my Kindle because I know you are all DYING to know. Okay, so remember how I told you that Josh got me my Kindle for my birthday way back in the day?? (read May) -- And when I say "Josh got me" I mean, I informed Josh that I wanted, nay NEEDED a Kindle for my birthday and then when he hesitantly said "okay, I'll look into that" I informed him that because I loved him so very very much I wanted to ease his burden and therefore purchased it for him and it was on its way here to Khartoum and THANK YOU VERY MUCH JOSH! Best gift ever!! Seriously, sometimes I am such a good person it amazes me.

So naturally, I HAD to get one because all the cool kids had one and I was getting pretty sick and tired of being that girl here in Sudan who doesn't even have a stupid Blackberry (I KNOW! It's an unspeakable outrage, right?!?) and has to type in the stupid number three times to write a damn text message, but who does it anyway because I cannot stand talking to people on the phone and is humiliated when she realizes that the guy driving the donkey cart that is holding up traffic in Khartoum is also concurrently texting via his Blackberry! (he's probably also on Twitter) THEREFORE, it is only natural that I would want a KINDLE because there is no way in hell that Donkey Cart Man is going to get one of those before me (ha HA! donkey driver! What now, smarty!?)

Clearly, I NEEDED it.

Plus, the books are cheaper if you buy them in Kindle format; however, they also seem to be easier to read for some reason and I have been FLYING through them here. (It might also have something to do with the fact that I still don't have any TV hooked up here - JOSH your list of chores is really piling up here. HURRY UP!) So I seem to buy about 10 times as many books as I did when they were book-books, but I'm sure that has no bearing on this.

ANYWAY, (how'd I get so far off track??) so I'm reading one of the books I ordered that was recommended to me personally be Amazon (they're so thoughtful) and it is called, "The Wordy Shipmate" by Sara Vowell. It was HILARIOUS, but also learn-ey. Now normally I do not choose my books for their learneyness; I prefer to read for entertainment and to identify other possibilities of how I have been wronged by The Man. But I really liked this book - so I googled her.


She was does talk Radio shows, has written a number of books, was the voice of Violet in The Incredibles and she has been a guest on the Colbert Report MULTIPLE TIMES.

Why the hell didn't I go out of my way to be BFF's with her?? Do you know how badly I want to write her a letter and go, DUDE! Is Stephen Colbert as Nerdy Dreamy as I think he is?? How tall is he? Is he nice? Did he ask about me??

But no! I cannot. Why?? Because she'd get my letter and go, "Michel WHO?" What makes matters worse is that we both graduated from Bozeman Senior High School in Bozeman, Montana. It's not like we were in this HUGE class where you didn't know anybody! We knew each other, but we weren't BFF's - and its not like I can all go out to try to be her friend NOW -- She'll know its only for the Colbert Bump.

I'm an idiot.

Anyway, if you haven't read her stuff - she writes about history, but they are really funny and well written. If you gotta learn about stupid history, it might as well be entertaining too.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

My Daddy...

As you all know (and I recently found out courtesy of someone's blog!) today is Father's I thought you should all know a little bit about the man I still call "My Daddy."

Now, I realize this may come as a shock to many of you, but I was a TAD possessive as a child and my parents were known as My Daddy and My Mommy respectively. I would frequently inform my sister that these were MY parents and she could go get her own (GEEZ MEL! DOOY!!!)

My father was a PUSHOVER. I knew my mother would insist on proof of illness, so I would wait until mom had to leave for work and then run up to dad and say, "I don't feel so good" and he would immediately ask me what I needed. I would (of course) ask him what was available.....

"No, not that....No...Keep going....maybe, we'll come back to that later. YES! PUDDING! That is EXACTLY what I need for my - what did I say I had again?"

So I pretty much could have whatever I wanted from him. (And really, isn't that what good parenting is all about?? )

I kinda feel bad for my mom now....

However, a few discrepancies have come to light in recent years and now I question his parenting certification!

(a) I asked why gas was more expensive at Grandpa Harold's house than it was at our house; my daddy told me it was because the price of gas was determined by the distance from Kansas City. I believed this until I was circa 30 years old and found out (naturally) at work via public humiliation.

(b) When I got my driver's license I was so excited to drive the car. He told me that I needed to go change the summer air to winter air in the tires. He gave me $20 to do so. I kept that $20 for punitive damages. He probably still owes me $50 for that humiliation.

(c) When I was posted in Peshawar I was driving with a big-wig from Washington in the car showing him the sights and we came upon a line of camels going through town. The guy pointed out a dromedarie, and I was like, "WHAT!? That's a camel!" And then proceeded to spout off about how camels have two humps if they are going on a long journey across the dessert, because that is where they store their you can tell if a camel is going far if it has two humps of water for the journey...."

I trailed off as I saw the look on his face (which was familiar to (a) above's reaction) and I remembered the source of my info - MY DADDY! However, in my defense, WHY THE HELL WOULD YOU LIE ABOUT THAT!? And it's not like camels were going to come up living in Montana!


Now I'm not so sure if he's my daddy or my arch nemesis! However, as you can see from below, he fully accepted his granddog Kernel, therefore, I have to let it go.

To this day, I live in fear that I will find yet another big fat lie he told me as a child. Problem is, even HE doesn't remember all the nonsense he has spouted over the years! At least I now know why he always seemed to be laughing during my younger years. He was plotting his revenge!

Well played My Daddy....well played!

Happy Father's Day!

Saturday, June 20, 2009

I've Been Robbed!!!

So today I have the day off - the WHOLE day off (al-Hamdulilah!!) - and I head up to the roof to pursue my other favorite hobby besides my stupid blog and all your stupid blogs - reading and eating (preferably at the same time). So I walk out onto the roof and I immediately notice that something is different....its changed somehow.

I rush over to my favorite reading spot - kinda like a Flintstone's lounger built into my roof (see Exhibit A)

That's fine....So I walk around a bit more and then it hits me!!

Somebody Jacked my pile of bricks AND my sand dune !!!!

They're gone!! All traces of them are missing! WTF!?

Current photo sans crap....

The big mystery now is how the hell did they get those off the roof without me noticing and where did they put it. I can kinda see wanting the bricks (although they look a little shoddy-like) but is there really a market for the dirt?

May 2009 Photo of our Pile o'crap...

Plus, I'm a little sad because I had been working on that sand dune since mother's day! Now I gotta start all over again. You guys KNOW how lazy I am. It's probably never gonna happen.

My Dirt pile as of May 2009

So I stood there in outrage for at least twos of minutes and then went back to my hobby.

God Bless Kindle and Hit40 (for sending me the giant cheese balls)!

Friday, June 19, 2009

Dear God,

Hi there. It's me...Michel. No, Michel in SUDAN...yes, that's the one. Okay, so I know I haven't written in a while, but I just wanted to let you know that I would REALLY REALLY appreciate it if you could change women's fashion for the betterment of those of us who are anorexically challenged. Oh yeah, in case you weren't following what's hip now - that's the new PC term for Chubbie-Pudgies, because as it turns out, calling someone "Chubbie Pudgie" can be offensive to some people.

Oh, and while I'm thinking of it, I'm really sorry for throwing that hissy fit when I thought Josh called me a Chubbie Pudgie and then starting that huge rally in Asburn that ended with the Krispy Kreme being ransacked and burned to the ground. ESPECIALLY when it turns out Josh had said something totally different that didn't even really SOUND like Chubbie Pudgie, but I happened to be eating the "Love It" sized ice cream from Coldstone secretly in the kitchen and I was in a bit of a panic and just naturally assumed he was calling me fat. Which reminds me, Kitchen's should really have closets you know. It is difficult to be a closet eater if your kitchen is wide open like that. Can I get just a LITTLE help here??

Anyway, my point - yes. I just wanted to let you know that I think you should look into today's fashions for women. They are discriminatory. Not everyone can wear skinny jeans with that stupid ass low waist. (Oh sorry God. My goodness! I NEVER swear! ) (Shit! that was a lie. I'm sorry again.) Why hasn't anyone raised a stink about this?! (or for you Canadians, Why hasn't anyone raised a stink aboot this??)

I know for a fact that I am not the only woman that is faced with the muffin-top dilemma. Sure it was okay there for a while when those big flowey shirts were in style - however, I'm very distressed to report that shirts are getting more form fitting (God help us if they come back to that skin-tight fashion where the buttons appeared to be pooking...remember that? On skinny girls it looks all cute and sexy like you have breastesses, on me, it just looks like my clothes dont' fit. ) Anyway, God, if you have time, I would really appreciate it if you could look into this and make some sweeping changes.

And/or get on science's ass to make that damn fat pill. What have they been doing?


Oh yeah, God Bless Mom, Dad, other mom, Pops, Josh, Poods, Kernel, Riley, Marley, ReRun, Mommy Dog, Pippy and this stupid kitty here. Oh yeah, and all those other people who need it.

Best regards,

Thursday, June 18, 2009

I Totally Suck...and Here is Why...

However, I called Paul today at work in DC and ensured that he was FEELING MY PAIN. So that made a lot of the below much, MUCH better!! Because he knows that I suck and has now realized that he probably shouldn't have left me in charge! That was poor planning on your part, mister!

However, may I state right here for all you US cits out there - foreigners may go get a snack for this lecture - just because you are a US citizen does not mean you have the God given right to tour the closest US Embassy. I gotta tell you that I cannot recommend that you storm up to the local guards and start demanding to be let in because "You're a US Citizen damnitt! And you have your rights!!"

You just might get me for a POC....(and I think we all know what that means) Newsflash! You actually don't have any rights in Sudan...write that down...

But THIS is not why I suck - this is why my job sucks. (Two totally different things)

Reasons I suck:

(1) I totally promised to help out Hallie so that I could get (God)credit for being a better person by relying on YOU GUYS being the better people...and then I immediately forgot to post it! (because I'm obviously not a good person --DOOY! KEEP UP! Would you?!)

So anyway, Hallie is doing a fund raiser - And before I go on with this, PROMISE ME NOW!! Nobody tell Josh there is $600 worth of camping equipment up for grabs or he will enter the raffle 722 times and claim he won. Seriously, the man thinks he wins shit on eBay - no matter how many times I point out that he is just the idiot that was willing to pay the most for it...(methinks the guy who sold it won...)

ANYWAY, it's for a great cause - so if you CAN - and you have the TIME - and you are not a hollowed out shell of a human being, bitter, broken and dead inside, fit only to walk the streets at night when nobody else is around, you should go to and help her out. Her dad received a new heart and this is her way of giving back. PLUS, she claims (and I cannot verify these claims because I'm too lazy to do so) that prizes totaling over $3,000.00 are up for grabs!

Wait....on second thought - never mind... I'm sure someone more deserving who may or may not need to head over there and go win that shit -- and then promptly sell it on eBay to pay for their last shopping spree in Dubai -- will likely be a shoe-in for the prizes. It's probably not worth your time to join the raffle; You should just go donate to the cause and call it a day. I'm just saying, I'm here for you.....

Damnitt! I DO suck.

(2) Remember how my blinds were all freaking me out because they were moving? Well, I figured out what it was - and it is reason number 2 why I suck and why you should NEVER trust me with anything you cherish.

Okay, so I'm babysitting Papaya, right? He's the stray kitty of a guy here at the Embassy who went on leave, but Papaya is pretty much feral and runs away in terror whenever I would come near him. So basically, my duties are to (a) put out food; (b) give him water; (c) tell housekeeper we have a kitty for next three weeks, so clean that litter box biatch; and (d) try to pet said kitty.

I totally forgot I had a kitty!

It was the KITTY behind the blinds (they are vertical to the floor) chasing after them because the AC was moving them - then kitty starts them flapping. So of course I assume that Satan is in my house (WHICH I TOTALLY CONTEND IS A NATURAL ASSUMPTION) and grab my 'puter and lock myself into my bedroom.

It totally could have happened to anyone.

However, I now think that kitty might be a bit traumatized because he is acting all friendly now and making it known that he is in the house. Nobody panic and please stop googling the number for PETA - kitty did have food, water, and kitty box! Plus, I "found" him this morning before I went to work when he attacked me as I walked down the stairs (kitty's a little bit of an ass). And, we have a housekeeper whom I PAY to remember that I have a kitty...'s all good....right??

Right KITTY??

I gotta tell you, now that he is not running away in terror, kitty is kinda cute now - but he is SERIOUSLY a bad kitty!! He's into everything -- and I don't even HAVE anything! Honestly, he might be a little bit crazy and/or Satan's Little Helper:

This is not camera lighting - his eyes are glowing right now - okay, so he's napping in the chair now, but he WAS shredding it with his claws just a minute ago and I was kinda too scared (and guilty feeling) to stop him....there is that....

If you don't hear from me again, you'll know its because Kitty totally ate my computer connection. Seriously... I wouldn't put it past him.

Sheesh! Kitties hold such grudges! It's frankly unattractive.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009


Okay, so I'm sitting here commenting on everyone's blogs - You know, normally, I would say, Sitting here, minding my own business - but I think we all know THAT'S not true -- Anyway, so I'm sitting here and the stupid blinds are all flapping - and it is starting to annoy me. So after like 10 minutes of this, I get up to turn off the ceiling fan and IT IS NOT ON.


Damnitt! Now I'm really going to have to move!!! Again. This shit has asbestos and is apparently haunted!! (and/or has ginormous spiders that flutter the blinds - also a viable option) So since I have wireless in the house - I have moved into the bedroom and locked myself in for safety.

Seriously!?!? WTF!?!?

Where the hell is Josh? Where is poods!? I can't handle these types of situations alone! We don't even have any Marine Security Guards here I can react to come check out the house. I'm utterly alone!!!

When I was in Algiers, there was this HUGE spider in my kitchen drawer - you could seriously see each little hair on its legs, and it hadn't seen a razor in quite a while! So naturally, I did what any professional would do -- I called the marine at Post One and told him that I was in mortal danger and needed help.

The guy went through the requisite SOP they'd established for dealing with calls from Michel:

Marine: Hello Ma'am

Me: GASP! How DARE you!?!

Marine: I mean, Michel...Hello, "Miss."

Me: I can hear your air quotes! Do you have any idea how rude that is!?

Marine: Did you need something??

Me: I'm in imminent danger!!! You must send a battalion to my house. Oh, the danger is in my kitchen.

Marine: Michel, we've been over this. The marines are at post to protect the Embassy and classified material. Not the personnel.

Me: Oh really!? You don't care if I die then?

Marine: I'm sure someone would be sad. But I cannot react the marines to protect you from the danger in your kitchen.

Me: What if I told you I had wrapped myself in classified material I found laying around the Embassy and now the CLASSIFIED is in imminent danger.

Marine: I would have to write you up for a security violation for improper handling of classified material.

Me: JOSH! You suck so bad!

Marine: Sigh. I'll be over when I'm off duty. Just stay out of the kitchen.

Me: But I'm hungry!

Marine: (click)

Why the hell did I marry that man!?!?

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Note to Self:

Never, ever leave work unattended again!!! It is simply not worth it. I believe this has already been mentioned in a number of other blog posts - how work piles up because we all work with a bunch of lazy loser-asses who leave post-its in your office and call it a day -- Blognut had the latest one - and I laughed when I read it, because it was not about me and therefore, it was HILARIOUS.

I'm not laughing now.

I arrived at the office this am to find Paul with a suitcase in hand scurrying to and fro (Paul likes to scurry.) barking out orders to everyone who was walking by him....and then turns to me and says, "Oh, by the way, I'm headed out - be back in a few - things were fine-- well, kinda fine -- okay, so not really Fine, so much as fucked up -- but I'm sure it'll all just work itself out. You're in charge. See you in a few weeks or so. . . . [insert horrified silence here] . . . Good luck. Do you need anything from the States??"

I need a young priest, and an old priest -- because that man is going down!!! Did he not hear me say GOOD DAY!?

So my plan is to rearrange everything in the office -- to include his office - which will now be MY office - and make a few sweeping changes. I plan to institute the following: (1) Pancake breaklunch - where we eat pancakes from arrival until it is time for us to go to lunch; (2) Afterpanlunch Naptime; and (3) Daily Happy Hour(s) until it is time to leave.

We'll see who says good day next!!?

ANYWAY, I digress. Dubai.

Here is your official Dubai tour photos:

This was our bathroom in the hotel. Had a great view although no curtains and I was kinda freaked out to use the bathroom at night with the lights on because if someone were out on that beach and happened to look up - OH HOLY! There I would be - in all my glory - using the facilities! Trust me! Nobody wants to see that shit! (seriously, there was no pun intended there.)

This was the view from the bedroom - NICE, huh!? Also, I checked to ensure that was real grass - it was - but it's all kinda funky grass - the place kinda looks like a putting green there - the pool was great, but filled with women who have clearly never had kids, never eaten a piece of cake in their collective lives, and all wearing suits that are not meant to be in the water and likely cost more than my entire year's salary.

I was seriously worried that there was some sort of indicator the hotel gives the full fare paying guests so that they can readily identify when someone like me shows up for the super saver rate - so that they don't have to actually speak directly to me and can avert their eyes should I happen to be in the elevator at the same time -- because there never was anyone in the elevator with us at the same time and that made me suspicious, frankly....I suspect they all got to use the better elevator and there wasn't a special "block" of elevators for the tower guests -- maybe there was, if by "tower" you mean "poor people," then yes, I guess there WAS a special elevator - and thank you for saving it for me. Bright side? Always there for us!

This was the Dubai Mall - The Falls and the Aquarium. (my picture taking sucks - there were sharks in that thing, but I was too cheap to pay to stand close to it, so this is what you get. And before you bitch, remember, you get what you paid for - and YOU (bitcher) paid how much for this post?? That's what I thought!)

Seriously. I heart the Dubai Mall. However, you know what I do NOT heart?? BRITAIN -- that's right - you heard me - the U, F'n K! Oh, I went there. (and I'll go back again! Just watch me!) HOW DARE YOU! Do you guys have ANY idea the emotional trauma the UK has caused me on this trip?!?! ANY!?

Okay, so we're shopping right? of COURSE we were! (unless of course this is Josh reading this and then what I MEANT to say was, So we were helping orphans, right?) and I see all these signs saying, "SALE" and "70% off" naturally, I'm intrigued...I enter - I find all this cute stuff that is some price that can never truly be known - so it's like you're in Vegas - you never know what you're going to win!! (and you usually go home without any money - so it WAS like I was in Vegas!!)

So, I go to try on these adorable outfits -- and the f'n tops don't even remotely fit. the TOPS! (usually not my issue) Horrified that I had contracted some type of hideous and rare form of the dreaded Africa Expanding Disease (usually exacerbated by little Debbie) I yelled for a MEDIC - Or, Christina - who came running - then she explained to me that UK clothing sizes are smaller than US clothing sizes (so vanity sizing has obviously not caught on there - SAVAGES!) So now not only do I have to try on a size I swore to myself I would never wear - I have to do MATH to figure out what the hell to try on!!!

So, we finally just gave up and went to Banana Republic and Bloomingdales. Whatever! It's all good.

Monday, June 15, 2009


Okay, so I distinctly left a post noting that I was going to be going away for a few days for a mini-vacay in Dubai, right?? We had a social contract people!! A social contract that the blogging world will STOP until I return! And you guys SHAMELESSLY broke it.

What part of that was unclear????

I come back home thinking to myself, "Oh! I'm tired after that flight....but I have GOT to let everyone know that I am back because I'm sure they've been bored waiting for my return" (Do you SEE how selfless and giving I am?? It almost brings a tear to my eye!?)

Anyway, now you're just going to have to manage to find a way to go on without knowing what I think about what you wrote or how your opinions were "WRONG and here is why!" If you can all LIVE with that...then FINE!

Speaking of me....(and in case you haven't noticed, we always are)...just a few highlights for you:

I'm too tired to click that button that uploads photos - and I pretty much took like 4 of them. Let's face it...I was either drinking Vodka that I bought in the duty free area in my hotel room and/or I was at some mall or another

Which reminds me, if Josh asks, someone else charged up all that shit at the Dubai Malls....someone who wasn't really sure how much shit costs there because the UAE Dingo (which I believe is their official currency) had like 3.63 of them in each dollar (OR, it was the other way around, I can never be sure...but does that REALLY matter?? I mean, REALLY??) HOWEVER, it was the "off season" (hence the deal we got on the hotel room) so they had a BUNCH of sales at the whatever I bought - at whatever price it actually turned out to be - was 70% off!? Or, UP TO 70% off...same diff??? It was complicated.

Math is hard.

SOOOO anyway, other than that AWKWARD night where Christina and I apparently drank waay too much Vodka after a dinner with a lotta wine (you have no idea how exciting it is to actually drink a glass of wine out of a wine glass in public at a restaurant - you'd pay $90 for a cheap bottle too! TRUST ME) and then we got back to the hotel room and both agreed that YES, it WAS worth $30 to order Mama Mia! on pay per view and then proceeded to sing it at the top of our lungs until the Russian Mobsters and their respective hookers in the room next door pounded on the walls to let us know that Abba is NOT as popular in Russia - We had a GREAT time.

I will try to post pics later. Although, if you guys wanted a travel post - you're bound to be disappointed. However, I did take pics of the mall.

It's my way.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

I'm Outtie....

I'm headed to Dubai tonight for a well-deserved (in my opinion) mini-vacay! And before you ask, no, it is not on your tax dollar! (Selfish!) -- It is on Josh's dollar...

He would want me to have it....

There is probably a REALLY good chance this will be posted at the airport after my departure...

And the Smoting Stopped and God Smiled Upon Me....

So remember how I was bitching?? HAHAHA! Bitching.......wait! Of course you do. It's WHAT I DO! -- Of course you remember.

ANYWAY, So get this: I've been told I need to be back in the States in July - NO EXCUSES! YOU ARE COMING BACK!!

Ummm...HELLO!!!! I wasn't going to give an excuse - I was going to suggest I leave right now so that I am adequately prepared for any event you may host for me in the States.

I'm just saying - my brows??? They need work . (There should be two).


Home! Where ALL the AC works....HOME! Where the pizza is what is publicly accepted as "Pizza" ... not hot dog slices on a piece of flat bread with some kinda red sauce that was not made with any tomato product in it, and "cheese" that has nothing resembling what we would call "cheese" anywhere near it...


And so I'm all excited right? So I think - I should get hotel reservations - I mean I have like 30 days to make them, but it would be rude to delay for some silly reason, right? So I go online to look, and I think to myself, "You know what would be SOOO cool?? (and make my life totally complete right now) If the RITZ CARLTON had a USG rate...Now that would be fab!"

But that's totally an urban legend right??

I submit to you that it is NOT!

They totally accepted me!! At the same rate as if I were staying at the stupid Comfort Inn-- LESS ACTUALLY! All they need is a Federal Gov't ID...

Oh, I'll give you an ID!! Whatkinda ID do you want? I'll make what ever mother f'n ID you want if that's what it takes. Make no mistake about that!

What is your policy on IDs made with Crayon?

So I'm coming home - and I'm staying at the Ritz Carlton in VA. (I assume I have many, MANY more friends right now - I back that though, I'd totally be my friend right now if the situation were reversed! And yet, if I were staying at the Comfort Inn, I'd totally break up with myself -- unless of course it was adjacent to a Cheesecake Factory -- WHICH THIS RITZ CARLTON TOTALLY IS!!!)


God totally loves me right now.

SHUT UP! Don't say ANYTHING. I don't want to upset this fragile balance....

However, with any great high, there is also a great low. And here you have it:

We have figured out that I am currently referred to what is called "Khartoum Beautiful." Similar to "Baghdad Beautiful," in that in the sheer absence of women, what would normally be "Ehhh?! I guess she's okay," turns into "HOLY SHIT! She's HOT!" in Iraq -- Very similar situation here.

How do I know this, you ask??? Why! I was TOLD! That's how...(because no day is complete here without some sort of lasting humiliation for me)

Me: Holy Shit! Did you just take my picture?? Was it full body?! YOU KNOW the USG regulations State explicitly that pictures of women diplomats must ONLY be taken from the chest up - NO ASS-THIGH photos (of me) are allowed! This is clearly outlined in USG regulation 7.6.124(7) -- (Good rule of thumb - when in doubt and trying to make a point, it's always good to confuse others with numbers. Works every time!)

Sudanese Male: (thinking he has committed some horrid cultural faux pas - which he clearly has!) I'm SORRY! ? What? Why?

Me: Don't you know, the camera adds like 72 pounds??

Sudanese Male: What?!? You're not fat....

Sudanese Male: in Khartoum....

Sudanese Male: I mean, you MIGHT be in America.....I don't know about AMERICA...

Sudanese Male: but in're NOT fat...*per se* (implied)

Me: Good day Sir.

Sudanese Male: But... I mean....

Me: I SAID good day.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Dear GSO,

I am in receipt of your email informing me that you have received my work request for the AC to be repaired in my office. I am also in receipt of the small desk fan you have left on my desk for the interim time until this weekend when the electricians will arrive to repair said AC units in the office.

I do believe we have been through this drill already in my house, and I believe that my behavior at that time was described as "patient, understanding, and deserving of Sainthood." Yes, I realize that description was given by myself, however, I think we can all agree that it all ended well and nobody was killed (that they can prove). Eventually, you even solved the issue in my residence (by moving me into a residence with both AC AND Asbestos).

Please also be advised that the small desk fan you provided to "cool" my office space in the interim has also stopped working. Further, it should be noted that the concrete office in which I work approximately 10 hours per day, when not air conditioned, gets very hot. Your small desk fan only serves as a reminder of how much I totally hate you right this minute. As an illustration, this afternoon Anna and I left a pizza on the marble counter area before we went to our meeting. Upon our return circa 40 minutes later, we had a nice lunch prepared for everyone.

While I cannot deny that our impromptu pizza oven experiment was a huge crowd pleaser for those who have air conditioning in their offices, when Anna pointed out the jumbo bag of peanut M&Ms had melted through its protective candy coating, the other Embassy officials were no longer amused and there is talk of a coup.

Now I understand that you have plans set aside to fix this issue no later than Sunday, assuming that you have the appropriate materials. Please be advised that I intend to burn the Embassy down no later than Wednesday afternoon if you do not come up with an alternative plan.

I would be willing to accept that you move Paul out of his office and put myself in there. I believe that would be a workable solution for all involved. You should probably get Paul a new desk fan. He is a section head.

Thank you for your anticipated cooperation in this regard.


Monday, June 8, 2009

And Then the List was Ruined....

Okay, so my list revision has been the topic of much MUCH discussion around the Embassy here (yes, you can rest easy... We're here on the front lines of democracy here!) And we ended up in a HUGE debate (and luckily Josh was not here for this as I am sure we would be in a ginormous fight right now - I'm already mad at him for the things I IMAGINED he would say if he were there....AND IT WAS NOT GOOD PEOPLE! Not good at all!

HOW DARE HE!?! The people in my head have totally talking about this ALL DAY!

So, anyway - the debate was on...there were those in the Daniel Craig camp - pointing out that you can't just throw away 5 mos of him being your Plan B because of a really bad movie - I conceded that Layer Cake was still an AWESOME movie and I would totally turn to drug dealing if I thought I could work with Daniel Craig....

However, (as I mentioned to one or two of you guys in my email comments) I have been harboring a long-standing infatuation with nerdy republican appearing men. Men like Bill Nye the Science Guy and Stephen Colbert.

I do love nerdy guys who look like they can do math. However, let me be perfectly clear on this point -- I don't ever want them to TALK about math or do math in my presence...this stipulation is a deal breaker -- Just look like you can do math. No less, no more.

But I digress...

So the discussion went kinda like this:

Man #1: I don't understand this "list" concept. What is the point? Those people will never like you. Why are we talking about this? I have a meeting to prepare for...

Me: This is IMPORTANT! Will you focus Please!?!? My God Man!

Paul: Madelyn Khan is on my list. Kate Winslet is also on my list.

Me: Paul! Madelyn Khan is dead. She is using up valuable list space. You need to redo your list.

Man #1: This is a trap. Don't fall for it.

Man #1's wife: I think you should keep Daniel Craig and just add Stephen Colbert. Stephen is not coming to Sudan. He never leaves NYC.

Man #1: I have to go to a meeting.

Me: What if I put Edward Cullen down and didn't tell Liz?? Would she find out? PAUL!?!?!

Man #1's Wife: Come on! It's not a trap!! It's fun. You just make a list and we both agree and it's fine.

Me: Josh agreed to my list - although technically, he has not approved Stephen Colbert. I will raise that with him tonight.

Man #1's Wife: (annoyed) Just PICK someone - this is fun!

Man #1: It's dumb. It's a trap.

Me: What about Hugh Jackman. He's kinda hot?

Paul: I am keeping Madelyn! I might meet her in Heaven and don't want her to think I dumped her. This will pay off in the long run, you'll see.

Man #1's wife: JUST PICK SOMEONE!

Man #1: FINE! I'll pick Sara, John's wife; your sister's friend from college..what was her name? and the lady who works for USAID, the new one whose husband is kinda weird. There! Happy Now!?

Me: Excuse me, I got a meeting. I'm late.

Paul: Is that my phone!?

Sunday, June 7, 2009

The Problem with Laminating Your List...

Is that it is a LOTTA work when you have to change it....and I gotta tell you - I have to change my list.

So remember how I was telling you all about how much I heart Daniel Craig and how I put him on my list because I was sure that if he decided to show up in Sudan (becuase it seems to be every stupid celebrity's cause du jour) how I might actually be able to talk to him?? Remember that??

And remember how I made it my life's work to meet every manager of the five star hotels in Khartoum so that I would not miss it if/when he DID come to town?? Remember that??

Remember how I hadn't ever really watched Quantum of Solace (mostly because I didn't have access to TV here in Sudan and how the word Quantum kinda gives me the heebee-jeebies because it sounds too mathy??) Remember that??

Well, I was sick today (Sudan got me!) with a cold and in between the small coma I lapsed into over the whole damn weekend, I watched the Daniel Craig extravaganza, sure that I would love him even more.

I did not (what the hell was that?? What even happened there?? WHY were we watching that and WTF did he drink at the end? Shit! I swear I was paying attention, and I DO have at least an average IQ - Hey! I conned people into thinking I passed the foreign service exam AND that I read The Economist - when in reality there was a People magazine tucked down inside there --and I hated it. So now I'm contemplating my new choice for my list.

This choice is important. I bumped George Clooney for Daniel Craig when I saw George get all preachy and judgey about Sudan when he doesn't even really understand all the issues at play. (I really hate that. Do your homework man!) So now what??

No matter how obsessed I am, I can't put a 17 year old vampire from Forks, Washington on my list (a) because he's not real; (b) because I think my mom would totally disown me; (c) Liz and I would have a knock-down brawl over Edward; and (d) I think that might be illegal and I could potentially lose my job.

SO WHO SHOULD I CHOOSE TO REPLACE DANIEL. Now I realize some of you who still heart Daniel may try to dissuade me from dumping him - I mean, Daniel and I have been dating and he has been my Plan B for like 5 mos now - but after I saw the Daniel Craig Popsicle posted on Captain Dumbass' Us & Them, and then compounded by that movie - I knew he was not for me.

Welcome suggestions.

Saturday, June 6, 2009

True Confession!

We've been together since 2001; (before Josh and I even met) when you arrived at Post in Algiers, Algeria. I remember the first time we were in the same room. My infatuation was immediate. Our relationship began instantly, and we have never been apart.

We were together all through our posting in Algeria. We traveled back on the same flight to WDC in 2003 and then we again flew together to Iraq. We were even together at my wedding AND on my honeymoon. I simply couldn't leave you behind. You are simply that important to me.

Our relationship soon became a bone of contention between Josh and I (not as much as this blog, amazingly enough). He could not stand that I insisted on taking you everywhere --that I could not stand to be apart from you. He claimed you were an embarrassment and that I should be ashamed of myself. But I simply couldn't be without you.

I suspect Josh put Kernel up to the senseless attack in November 2005, but I cannot prove it. Kernel was clearly just a baby and he didn't know any better. It took time for me to repair my relationship with Kernel after that; however, I understood that he was just a baby and eventually, I learned to forgive. And to his credit, Kernel never tried to hurt you again. You were scarred and would never be the same, but our relationship remained strong.

I even brought you to Sudan.

Why can't I quit you??

I don't think you guys understand -- I SERIOUSLY love these slippers!!!! Yes, they are falling apart; Yes, there is a hole in the toe; and Yes, they leave little parts of slipper all over the house, but DAMNITT! These are the BEST SLIPPERS EVER!!!

When we went to Costa Rica (yes, they came with me) for our vacay, I was really upset because my toe started poking out of the top and I knew that it was only a matter of time before they totally fell apart. Josh sent me a new pair for Valentine's Day. They are a lighter grey and are similar, but are not the same. I cannot seem to part with these.

Every week, my Ethiopian housekeeper tries to hide them in the back of the closet and puts the shiny new pair up front for easy access -- even she hates them!

I get them out every week and wear them around.

Yesterday, Liz and I were chatting on the instant messenger. We were talking about how it sucks that we can't continue our monthly spa day hobby and Liz said, "Remember those damn slippers? The ones you used to wear out into public for our massage appointments?!"


"OMG! You are not still wearing those, are you!?"

I look down at my feet.


"Please tell me you don't wear them outside in Sudan. Please tell me at least that."



But I love them.

"But they're hideous!"

But I love them.

"Josh is a saint."

I think we've already established that.

Friday, June 5, 2009

New House....

So Josh was bitching the other day about how he hasn't seen any pics of the new house - only the previous pics of the hideous temporary house we were assigned (a temporary house that was not, by the way, built lovingly by USG contractors with asbestos).

Okay, so maybe he wasn't bitching so much as I was bitching at him that he hadn't even NOTICED that I haven't posted the pics of the house.

How can the man not focus on the importance of this issue?!?

So anyway, since he said, "Yeah, whatever," I take that to mean he is eagerly awaiting some photos of the new asbestos ridden death house in which I currently live... (I previously posted pics of the other house when I first got here back in March, but don't know how -- and am obviously too lazy even if I DID know how -- to link back to them. Do your own work.)

The Kitchen -- I know! Pretty bleak!! However, notice how the stove is no longer circa 1957! We have totally graduated to what I believe is fall, 1989. There is also no hideous puke green tile that is falling off the walls. Although downside is that Joe (the gecko) didn't bother to move to the new place. (I may go back and get him though - he's kinda creepy, but I hate spiders and bugs even more.)

Living Room and Dining Room -- I've yet to use either of these locations. Although there IS a TV, I haven't bothered to have it hooked up yet (that is clearly a boy job) and we don't have any household effects yet (I believe they are being held hostage in Port Sudan), so we're currently living off of welcome kit dishes. However, there is NO bar ware! I am being forced to drink any wine I can get my hands on out of plastic cups.

Also, notice the 1981 off white lamps with the spanking new sparkling white shades. Nicely done GSO.

The office where I spend MOST of my time when I am home (blogging and commenting -- my life's work).

Yes, I did choose that color, and yes, I do remember the treadmill room in our house back in DC that I thought would be this beautiful burnt pumpkin color and how I did all the internet research about how shades of orange allegedly give you energy and I figured that would make me run more, but when we actually painted the room, it was pretty much the color of a traffic cone. But this was yellow.

That's totally different.

This is our room; although it should be noted that those are my closets and I've pretty much filled up all the dresser space. However, I'm not a monster!! I saved you some room in the guest room!!!

SEE!? that dresser (the small one there) is totally yours. There is also one closet in there; although I have been putting my new shoes and some of my "winter" clothes in there. Turns out you were right babe. I don't actually need winter clothes in Sudan. However, it is obviously very important to be prepared.

Therefore, you should be prepared and probably plan on building yourself a new closet. I'm just saying, by November??? Shit happens.

And finally, these are the stairs that one would assume go up to the third floor, but in reality end in a door that pretty much goes out to the roof where we keep the pile of bricks and big sand dunes. I'm not sure why we are keeping those things, but clearly, they are necessary or GSO wouldn't have left them there, right?

All I'm saying is, I'm totally not sweeping that shit. I'm just going to save that for later.

And by "later," I mean when you get here.

See how considerate I am?? Love ya!

Thursday, June 4, 2009

I've Got it ALL Worked Out Now....

Okay, so Liz is moving to Naples soon. I'm thanking GOD right now (mostly so he won't smote me again, but also because then Liz can be on the same stupid timezone and I'll have someone else to harrass on the instant messenger when I am pretending to work. PLUS I won't be forced to actually DO work due to sheer boredom while I wait for 2:00 to roll around and you lazy asses in Washington to show up at work) because.... wait...where was I going with this..???


So you know I told you all that Liz is married to an orthopedic surgeon right?? Therefore, the way I figure, she pretty much doesn't care if she works or not (she's just like me, only she won't end up homeless in a cardboard box if she gets fired), SO by my calculations, she will have plenty of time on her hands, therefore, to figure out what it is I want to BE when I grow up!

So far I have narrowed it down to "Rich" and "Akin to Unemployed." I mean, I've pretty much done her work FOR her here.... How hard could this be??

The rich part is where I am getting stuck. I may have to engineer some kind of internet scam and/or turn to a life of crime....However, I've been considering my options:

(a) Walmart Greeter. I'm not sure they would actually hire me because I'm not so greetey or welcomey. I'm kinda more hatey. As such, this might not work...

(b) Pharmacist. I totally like to self medicate and I'm a whiz at Web MD...why I've dignosed myself with COUNTLESS maladies and diseases. Don't I just have to kinda stand at that raised podium thing with all the bottles and boxes in a white lab coat with my name embroidered on it? Also, is there a free sample section? Because I think I'd like to run the sample section. Will they accept an English degree in lieu of medical training if I have over 4,000 hours of web Md experience?? I figure I'm pretty much internet certified right now!

(c) Professional Blogger. Who are all these people that are ALLEGEDLY making money on this shit? How are they doing this and who on earth is paying them? And do they owe me money already??

(d) Little Debbie Professional Consultant. Does anyone even appreciate Little Debbie these days?? She obviously needs some help with her marketing strategy (and, frankly her hair-do)...If I were there, I would help her to target the diplomatic community. She's missing out on a cash cow here. Let's just say that little bitch wouldn't know what hit her. She obviously needs me....

(e) Crazy Pet Lady. Will someone pay me to be the crazy pet lady? Is this a job?? Because I like pets..and I am pretty much almost crazy right now - give me 2 more months here and my training will be complete.

(f) ColdStone Creamery Tester. Let's just say I'd test the shit outta that stuff.

(g) Business Class Travel Rater. United? You got some 'splaining to do!! Why the hell is it that the ladies on Emirates Air manage to be pleasant even to the people in coach (I KNOW! I didn't even think that was even a possiblity!) -and Royal Jordanian gives you lay flat seats, hot fudge sundae's AND a free gift when you leave?? -- Because I'm a USG employee (because no one else will hire me until liz figures out my new career) I am, therefore, required to fly US flagged carriers when I go back to the states -- so I will accept you guys simply not being openly hostile to me... OR

(h) Pirate. It's clearly trendy once again and I've always like those puffy shirts and would totally love a job where I am praised for my ability to swear and pillage. I'd make a seriously awesome pirate. Plus, I'd probably have a kick-ass tan. (and tan fat looks better than white fat -- it's well known).

Anyway, Liz should be there in a few weeks and I figure she'll get right to work on this. Soon the doors will be open for me. You guys can all say you knew me when I was in my starter job as a....what is it I say I do again?

Otherwise, Liz and Dan - by my calculations Sudan should throw me out of the country within the next 4 mos (tops); I'm going to need my new career settled by then. If not, you should probably plan for your new houseguest. I am goin to need my own guest house with private entrance and exit. You may also want to plan for room for Josh too - on the off chance he doesn't leave me when I'm homeless and unemployed....

You may call me Cato.

Wednesday, June 3, 2009


So, yeah... work kicked my ass today. I should have called in sick. Seriously...You guys have no idea!


I suspect God smoted me....but for WHAT!?! I was good. I pretended to be nice to ALL KINDS of people! For example,

(a) there is an ass-wipe guy who lives in our compound who is mean to the puppies; I did not have him killed and believe me, I totally wanted to do so -- WHO IS MEAN TO A PUPPY!?

(b) I answered 752 retarded emails from people asking idiotic questions about stuff I don't care about and/or was already answered in email #234; I did not send back a snotty assed response for them to do their own work and look it up you lazy ass....No, I simply forwarded email #234 to them with a "let me know if I can be of further assistance." Which, in diplomatic speak means, "I would totally leave a flaming bag of poop on your desk if I were closer to you."

(c) lunch arrived today and I ate approximately half of my "chicken" sandwich before I noticed that there was MAYO on it! As such, I probably have about 7 hours left to live;

(d) I listened patiently while people paraded into my office (i.e. my private napping place) to tell me why they couldn't do this or that -- OBVIOUSLY, that is MY LINE people...get your own F'in catch phrase! and

(e) There is a chronic shortage of tonic in Khartoum!! There is none to be bought in town; our embassy stores are out of it; and people are now hoarding it in their residences!! I, however, was not informed of the upcoming embargo on the sale of tonic and I didn't know that we were supposed to hoard it -- NOW WHAT THE HELL AM I SUPPOSED TO DO WITH THIS STUPID GIN!?! Gin is disgusting if you do not have tonic!!! Plus, I was pretending to use it to cure malaria!?! NOW WHAT!

THANKS SUDAN -- now I'm going to have to add malaria to the other assortment of diseases I am relatively sure I have.....

Dear God (and/or his administrative assistant Braja),

I think there has been a mistake. Now I understand that you never make mistakes, but I do believe that you may have been MISINFORMED by some administrative assistant concerning recent events here in Khartoum. Please be advised that was NOT MY GOAT and therefore, I should not be smoted. Please remove all smotee-related smite and set my people free.

Best regards,

PS at your earliest convenience I would appreciate some Adderall and Valium to help me make it through this tour.

PPS And maybe Daniel Craig

PPPS And some tonic water because I think Daniel Craig is British and I think it is required to serve British people (especially in their former colonies) tonic water when they visit

PPPPS And also, if it is not too much trouble, could you please break our computers at work and/or in DC. Either option is fine with me. I'm not picky.

PPPPPS nevermind, I'm done.....

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Battle of the Back Yard, 2009

Okay, so apparently it is not enough that I try to post every stinking day. That I do my best to spout my opinions on everyone else's blogs -- it is literally becoming a full time job these days (ESPECIALLY because people are now rating the top commenters and I noticed that I was not the top commenter - and that there, is fighting words. So let the record reflect that it is obviously YOUR fault if you post that comment judger thing if all my comments are left in one word increments. You know who you are damnitt!) just to stalk people and tell them why their opinions are wrong and why I am right.

Can't we all just get along?!?!

However, now apparently people are now posting dueling yard pics to try to one-up everyone else. And I was LEFT OUT!

Exhibit A: Darsden at Ramblings About Why takes pics of these beautiful flowers ALLEGEDLY growing in her garden (although I suspect they are internet airbrushed, but I cannot prove it)

Exhibit B: Hit 40 at Sane Without Drugs in retaliation took a bunch of pictures of what she alledges to be her yard (I'm not buying it) and then had to up the ante by claiming she recycled the grass. Hit40, recycling is soooo 2008....

Exhibit C: Mary at Holy Mackerel - not to be deterred, then posted some of her alledged yard greenery even though she just started a new job.....(although Mary, fyi, I'm busy trying NOT to work and you're trying TO work? You Canadians always get crap backwards --You hoser!)

and Finally, I've seen postings from Beth at What I Should Have Said, and even Poppy at The Opiate of the Masses have been lured into this world battle of the backyards.....

Oh and I know there are more, I am just too lazy to link anyone else...


Because take a look at this shit!

This is what I like to call my "vegetation" or "token tree" is also doubles as a holder upper for the wall that is all cracked and crumbly. We can't have our razor wire falling down -- my God! What would the neighbors think!? No constantina wire?? ANIMALS!

This is where we grow our buckets and plastic shit. Little known fact, plastic parts grow in large clumps in a colorful array in Sudan.

Amazingly enough, we live in the RITZY section of Khartoum. (Imagine it people....I'll wait....)

This is where Riley plants his goat hooves....

And then they all lay in a circle so that nobody jacks that shit.

And this is the garbage gnome that tends to our plastic pieces and bucket farm.

So there you have it. Top that shit!


And finally, Darsden tagged me to post a particular photo - the 6th photo in my 6th folder and I was probably the 6th person she chose....

NO F'IN WAY DARSDEN! (Or should I call you SATAN?? )

Therefore, you can have the 7th photo in THIS particular folder that I was in....PLUS, how freakin cute is Mommy dog!? Seriously! Look at her?!?

Plus, I converted her to Christianity after I started feeding her; therefore, I'm all covered on this one....

God-smoting averted for another day. (Insh'allah)