February 6, 1998

Dress Up

I felt particularly animesque as I walked across the parking lot after buying tickets to Replacement Killers for myJohn and I. This was mostly because the sea-green hair was loose, my trenchcoat was blowing, and most surprising of all, I was wearing a black dress. A flowing black dress with no sleeves and a mock turtleneck and really soft knit material. And my feet were clad with Doc Martins. All I needed was a Big Ass Gun and I would have been in an anime.

That was pretty keen.

Last night was restful and busy at the same time, which was an odd but interesting combination. Raven was already at the house by the time John and I got in, as we were staying a bit late for a few more things to be done and John's soccer game wasn't until late.

So I hugged him and then I made macaroni and cheese. I put on a pot of water to boil, grated about 2/3 of a pound of Tillamook cheddar, plopped a cup of sour cream into a two cup measure, added a heaping tablespoon of mustard and an egg when the water came to a boil. Normally I put in eight ounces by weight of elbow macaroni, but with no elbow mac in the house, I just dumped a lucky double handful of spiral macaroni into the boiling water. I also found out that it wasn't nearly enough water, so I stirred it frantically while putting on a kettle of water to heat. Eventually ended up dumping the extra hot water in and the mac was fine with another good stir.

Went back to the sour cream stuff and stirred that all together first, and then gradually added a half a cup of milk in small increments to thin the stuff just a bit. The luck came from the fact that the mac I put in was exactly enough to fill the bowl I wanted to use for baking it all, so I poured half the mac into the bowl, topped it with half the cream stuff, and then a third of the cheese and did that all again. Stirred things together for a bit, and then topped it with the last of the cheese and then stuck it in a 350 degree oven to bake until the cheese was just a bit browned around the edges.

There, Raven, is the recipe.

While it was baking, I climbed back onto the exercise bicycle and Raven was quite capable of amusing himself with the Simpsons. Which was good.

I swore a lot for the first fifty rounds as, again, the darned thing wasn't terribly flexible, but as it went again, it started to flex again, and it gradually, very gradually got better. Okay, it hurt like hell and when both John and Raven asked me if I was okay I thought, for just a moment about just giving it all up and just not doing this and almost crying at the stupid pain and having to be still, but my own innate stubborness kicked in and I went just another ten rounds and it really did get better. Until it felt pretty good and I was pedaling happily and even smoothly. The motion got better, so I was going faster and with just a bit more resistance with all the wind. Did twenty minutes of that and it felt very good. Cooled off, showered, and had Raven rescue the Mac and Cheese when a timer went off, something John taught me well, which is that it's easiest to just set a timer and ask him to take it out then rather than telling him to just take it out when it's done.

Then Raven and I sat around and listened to a Sarah McLaughlin disc that he'd brought, it turned out, for me... that was great. And he gave me another backrub and leg rub that turned me into jelly. Yum. So I slept deeply and well.

Today has been full of testing and work and I took a small break to get new contact lenses and tickets for Replacement Killers and then went back to work. Around 5:30 my phone rang and the nurse that I'd contacted yesterday was on the other end, and gave me the report from the radiologist. The inside ligament to the knee is badly strained, the mediscus is undamaged, which is very good, and the ACL is, indeed, torn.

Even half expecting it, it's a bit of a shock.

It also turns out that the bones are pretty badly bruised, which, along with the inside ligament, accounts for why I can't bend my knee completely or straighten it completely. But since the cartilage isn't damaged, it accounts for why the exercise bike feels good and why my knee feels better when I do it and not worse, as it's not damaging anything, just working with what's there.

So... anyway. John and I are going to our Valentine's dinner tonight and then the uhm... romantic movie with a thousand bullets. It should be fun.

Oh right... why I picked the title. *grin* Both John and I dressed up today. He even wore a tie and had people dropping dead in astonishment all over the plant. That was cool. Folks were really, really surprised to see me in a dress, too. A nice dress even. So that was fun.

Sitting here listening to Sarah McLachlan's Surfacing. Really listening and feeling it quietly through my mind and body and enjoying it deeply. Reminds me of Markleford, but then most music does, and especially Sarah. But it's beautiful for it's own reasons, and Raven was clever enough by giving it to me to also give me other associations, other thoughts, other connections, other people to tie her music with. Regis also gave me another tie by suggesting that I just sit and listen to Fumbling Towards Ecstacy until I was sick of it and couldn't cry anymore, and that worked well.

It amuses me to be listening it to it on the little scrappy speakers that I have here at work, as John's doing stuff to the next build and it's about 11pm.

Dinner was excellent. We had reservations at the Country Bistro, a tiny French restaurant in downtown Redmond that has excellent food. John had a filet with oyster mushrooms and a rich brown sauce, and I had duck breast with a lonely orange and ginger sauce. Both dinners came with scalloped potatoes and tender zucchini and another pile of mashed sweet potato. Desserts were a slender slab of chocolate mousse in raspberry and cream sauces and an assortment of creme brule in raspberry, coffee, and vanilla flavors. One excellent thing they did was have an assortment of fine teas, and I asked for the Moraccan Mint on ice, and they did it fairly okay, bringing me a tea pot with boiling water, with a side glass filled with ice but they put the tea in a tea ball. I guess so it was easier to clean up after. The iced tea was clear and lovely.

The movie was good. Not as excellent as I'd hoped, but also not nearly as bad as I'd feared, and I now have to get the sound track.

Amusingly enough Anita and her Jason were at the movie theater as well, and Jason recognized me from the picture that was on my web page. *laughter* It was amusing for someone to come up to me and tell me that they recognized me from my web page in a theater full of Microsoft folks... as the guys behind John and I commented on it after Anita had walked away.

One of the things that I've been thinking of lately is that for an introvert I sure have made myself noticeable, lately. That I'm no longer a stealth runner, a hider in the shadows and listener extraordinare. From a girl that used to hide behind her long hair, I'm now a person that gets impatient when my hair is anywhere in my face. After a few years with my hair shorter than most guys, it has become something I'm accustomed to, after years of having no hair to hide behind, the length of hair I have now sometimes just feels like it's in the way. After years of just not being particularly notable, I'm now spottable from across a half-lit theater. That amuses me to think about.

So John's done now and we get to go home and sleep. Yay!

© 1998 by Liralen Li.

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