"Some calls it madness...I calls it HiDeeHo." - Cab Calloway
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Friday, April 04, 2003


...iterate how fascinated I am with RPGs and the people who play/write them? I just spent a good hour so cruising around and reading old posts at The Forge (see button link in the side bar), and the degree to which these guys (yeah, mostly guys) dissect and nail down and discuss and generally ADORE their pasttime is astounding. I think the cliche of loving something to death applies here.

Oh, and I mention this because I was in a bleak, despairing, trapped, depressed and ill-feeling mood this morning. Reading the posts on The Forge and adding a few of my own lifted my spirits considerably. So thanks, guys. It was real.

posted by Julie Neff  # 4/04/2003 01:41:00 PM

Wednesday, April 02, 2003


This afternoon, while waiting for my conference call, I dropped Morgan off at her friend Hannah's house, and went for a little drive. I passed this sign at 55 mph - Beulah Bog State Natural Area. Oooooh, intriguing. I am fascinated by bogs, and wetlands in general. Happy accident to pass by there. Rrrrrrr.... turn around, head back...

I pull in and park in a small, gravelly lot which contained the following:

My car
A dead splayed half-eaten 25-pound possum with its tail about 10 feet away (weight is a guesstimate)
An assortment of dead birds, including two crows and a flattened robin
A turkey vulture, sitting hunched in a tree (watching to see if I was going to steal any of this dead bounty)
A stray tabby cat, miraculously still alive but weatherbeaten and climbing a tree
A pile of cigarette butts and two condoms

Okay. This cast a weird Stephen King air over the place, but I wanted to go down to the bog.

The trail was narrow, rutted, muddy and had dog tracks. No boot tracks. No people tracks.

There was a light breeze rattling the bare brambles and branches. The message in the breeze was, "Go...come back another day...and make sure you carry your staff."

I haven't been so caught off guard in the great outdoors in years. It was really unnerving. I wanted to go the third of a mile down to the boardwalk and into the bog, see a piece of my beloved northwoods down here in the southeast corner but something didn't want me to go. I'll be back, armed with my trusty mountain ash staff. Hopefully by the time I come back, they will have cleaned up the parking lot.

posted by Julie Neff  # 4/02/2003 02:16:00 PM

Tuesday, April 01, 2003


I've had it up to here (holds hand at eye level) with a sedentary job that makes me get up early in the morning. I'm quitting Amphion and going to apply at the Hooter's down the road from Borders in Greendale. Maybe I'll go in and audition at Heartbreaker's or the Airport Lounge...

I drank the rest of that gallon of milk and never felt better in my life
I'm converting to Christianity.
I hate the color black.
I think nature is stupid.
I hate chocolate.
I hate roleplaying games and I'm only going along to keep my man quiet.
I'm going to let Morgan spend the weekend with Denver.
I'm going to watch American Idol and enjoy it.
I'm cashing in my State Parks sticker and never going hiking again.
Go Pack!
I'm pregnant.
I think Vin Diesel is the sexiest man alive.
I think Nigella Lawson is a frumpy cow and her cooking sucks.
I wish I looked more like supermodel Jodie Kidd.
I hate British comedy, and I especially despise Black Adder in all his incarnations.
I'm going to buy a minivan.
I love McDonald's.
I can't swim worth a damn.
I'm going to have enough plastic surgeries to turn me into a Barbie doll.
I love Michael Bolton's music. For my money, when he sings, "When a Man Loves a Woman," it doesn't get any better.
I'm going in to register as a Republican when I vote on local referendums this morning.
I curse the day I met Josh and I spit at the ground upon which he walks. Ptui.

(wait for it...)

Mo got me this morning..."Mom, you have 20 reports waiting, look!" Damn the girl. Although...I did get her by setting her alarm waaaay earlier than it needed to be set. I'm going to do the "I'm pregnant" one on my mom and see what happens. I'm doing the "I lost my job" one on my dad. Heehee...bad bad bad. Heehee.

posted by Julie Neff  # 4/01/2003 07:07:00 AM

Monday, March 31, 2003


There have been lots of thoughts passing through my head of late, and there have been lots of things that, if properly articulated, would make excellent thought-provoking posts; however, since that lack of articulation persists, I'll resort to list-making to clear my head.

1. Morgan is an extremely well-behaved child. I won't even put in the disclaimer "compared to some." She just is.
2. When I allow my thinking to go all fluffy-daydream and whimsical again, I'm a Rusalka or a Nixie or a Selkie, and that's why I always have to be in the bathtub or taking a shower or drinking or swimming or in humidity or near water (Josh had better make sure he never goes swimming with me in a natural body of water, or my Vodyany will get him and eat him all up).
3. We don't have a Christian household, so celebrating Easter seems like a bit of a stretch. It is thereby a holiday of cuteness, youth, and burgeoning proof of fertility. And sweets. Oh very definitely yes, the sweets. Easter candy, how do I love thee? Peeps and jelly beans, cherry cream eggs and chocolate bunnies, Fudgie bear bunnies and Cadbury mini eggs. The homemade desserts, the cotton candy chicks and coconut bunny cakes, and my personal favorite traditional springtime dessert, lemon cheesecake with berries. Narf. Lactose intolerance be damned. A box of Lactaid and I'm all set to chow.
4. Having said that, I actually very much enjoy attending Easter Sunday/Monday (orthodox) masses. Maybe it's the lilies and stained glass and icons.
5. I'm very skittish about flying. As previously stated, Josh and Mo and I will be flying out east in a couple of weeks. Implore the Ennobled Power of Mechanics to keep everything a-running aright.
6. Josh and I are working on nine months now. If this is possible, I think I am even more enamored of him now than I was last summer. The sun to my moon and the caster of my shadows, indeed.


My dad had this April Fool's gag he'd pull on me every single year since 1979, when I was 5. He had an early first-shift job, and would wake up around 5:00 in the morning. When he was ready to leave, he'd wake me up. On the mornings of April 1, he'd wake me up with, "Julie...Julie, guess what? We got 6 inches of snow overnight!" Or, "We had an ice storm last night." Or just, "It's snowing." I'd wake up, thinking "Oh no! It's supposed to be spring, it's supposed to be warm and nice, winter's supposed to be over..." I'd run to the window almost in tears. Lo and behold, no snow. Maybe a light hoarfrost. "April Fool's!!!" he'd say.

To my memory, despite Wisconsin's notoriously capricious weather, I can't think back to a single April 1 morning with snow, or even ice.

My dad decided to tell Morgan about this prank, so as to pass down the tradition of teasing me about my sensitivity to weather. She made the mistake of telling me. I'm not falling for it.

Guess what? I have one to pull on MY dad now.

In the intervening years, both he and I (as well as my mom) have gone though many phases of employment. There is no worse announcement you could make in the Foat household than, "I lost my job." Guess who's getting a call tomorrow afternoon? "Dad...um, I have some bad news..." Heh heh. I am a bad daughter. Get him back for all those years he made my girlish heart sink in despair by telling me it's snowing.

posted by Julie Neff  # 3/31/2003 02:37:00 PM


On this date in 1930, the Motion Picture Producers of Ameica adopted a code of ethics to govern filmmaking that included the following provisions:

"No picture shall be produced which will lower the moral standards of those who see it. Hence, the sympathy of the audience shall never be thrown to crime, wrongdoing, evil, or sin. Correct standards of life shall be presented on the screen, subject only to necessary contrasts. Law, natural or human, should not be ridiculed, nor sympathy created for its violation...the technique of murder should be presented in a way that does not inspire imitation...complete nudity is never permitted; this includes nudity in fact or silhouette, or any lecherous or licentious notice thereof by any other characters in the picture."

Class, can any of you give me examples of movies that do not adhere to this code of ethics?

posted by Julie Neff  # 3/31/2003 02:02:00 PM


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