Though I donâ€™t have adorable kitty pictures this week, (not that I couldnâ€™t have adorable kitty pictures at the drop of a hat, mind you) I do have a collection of random stuff thatâ€™s been floating in the ether at Casa Spector. (I know. I should really clean the freaking ether up here.)Â
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I had to give up drinking coffee a couple of years ago.Â For the most part, I was successful at this, though I have been known to poach coffee from The Dude at Saturday breakfast.Â (Saturday breakfast is a tradition Sven Knudson started about twenty years ago.Â A fluctuating group of malcontents show up at various restaurants to consume vast quantities of food â€“ and to bitch.)Â
Anyway, I met a friend at Starbucks the other day.Â I havenâ€™t been in Starbucks since I quit drinking coffee.Â Not unlike the alcoholic who should stay away from bars, I found just being in a place so redolent of brewing Sweet Nectar of the Gods was more of a temptation than I could stand for the first year or so.Â
My friend arrives and gets an iced coffee.Â Being the shameless mooch I am, I ask if I can have a sip ofÂ her enticing cold beverage.Â (Mmmmm, caffeine.)Â She graciously obliged.Â Â Â
I take a sip.Â And then I have that moment weâ€™ve all had, (girls more so than guys I suspect) the, â€œDo I spit or swallow?â€ dilemma.Â Because what I have in my mouth is not Sweet Nectar of the Gods, but rather Satanâ€™s Piss.Â Â
You know: The Devilâ€™s Urine.Â Beelzebubâ€™s tee tee.Â Luciferâ€™s pee.Â Mephistophelesâ€™s piddle.Â Â This stuff is so foul Iâ€™m pretty sure they must have an EPA permit to sell it.Â
And I realize why Starbucks sells all those Vente, Grande, Mocha Swirl with a Half-gainer concoctions.Â Because if anyone actually tasted the coffee in them, they would be convinced, as I am now, that Starbucks is actually in league with The Dark Lord (no, not Voldemort) to corrupt the taste buds of an entire generation.
And speaking of Voldemort, I finished the final Harry Potter book this week.Â If you havenâ€™t read the book â€“ stop reading now.Â There are â€œspoilersâ€ ahead.
I hadnâ€™t noticed it before reading this book, but Rowling cannot be called a feminist.Â It struck me as I was reading that all the female characters are either 1) a Mom/housewife (Hi, Mrs. Weasley!) 2) a Spinster (Hey there, Professor McGonagall!) or 3) a villainous bitch (Too many to be named here).Â (And, no, you donâ€™t get to count Hermione, who turns out be pretty much useless in the final book.Â Except for hooking up with . . . well, I wonâ€™t â€œspoilâ€ it.)Â
Take Fleur, for instance.Â In Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, Fleur is the representative from Beauxbatons to the Triwizard competition.Â So, sheâ€™s supposed to be no mean shakes in the wizarding department, right?Â And what does Rowling have Fleur doing in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows?Â Well, sheâ€™s married Bill Weasley and theyâ€™ve settled into a little cottage by the seaside where sheâ€™s . . . a housewife.Â Ye gods.Â Â (Oh yeah, she does get to be the flustered bride at her wedding to Bill in the first part of the book.)
Three years after competing in the Triwizard competition, I guess her ovaries have dropped and sheâ€™s now only good for magical sweeping and dishwashing.Â And Mrs. Weasley finally gets to use magic for a purpose not housefrau-ish, during the final battle at Hogwarts.Â But is she fighting Voldemort?Â No.Â She goes after Bellatrix Lestrange in a burst of motherly fury.Â Damn you, Estrogen!
Anyway, hereâ€™s a fun Potter link.Â Because I havenâ€™t geeked enough in this post already.Â
And the lovely image on this post is a shot of my brain. (Thanks for the scanning, Brad!) I had an MRI on Friday.Â Woo hoo!Â As tests go, MRIs are better than, say, having a needle biopsy of your spine.Â But for those of us with claustrophobia, itâ€™s really not a picnic.
I had a different kind of MRI this time â€˜round.Â Last time, they just put me on the sliding bed, and just popped me into the machine.Â This time, they lowered what looked like a cross between the muzzle for Hannibal Lector and the mask from The Man in the Iron Mask over my head. Â Â I spent about an hour trying not to move.Â This was so much more difficult than I remember it being last time.
The MRI machine is really noisy.Â Even when itâ€™s just idling, it sounds like the Tardis warming up.Â They took hundreds of images.Â When I was trying to pick out my favorite images for this blog post, I got to watch the images fly by starting from the top of my brain going down, sideways, and from the bottom up.Â Â Once youâ€™ve seen your own sinuses, itâ€™s really difficult to think youâ€™re all that and a big bowl of spicy guacamole anymore.Â
And finally, I saw this over at Best Week Ever and it was just so damn odd I had to post it here.