Wednesday, November 30, 2011 1 comments

Try To Remember

I said I would blog and I meant it damn it. You'll actually get two of these this week. Starting a new class tomorrow. Pretty sure it will be the same group of people from the last one...oh joy.

So yesterday it was my birthday. I'll wait a minute or two while you all tell me Happy Birthday and how young I look for 27 and how I would pass for 19.....anyway, 27th birthday. It was nice. Got a Kindle Touch (the bad ass case is on back order :() and a Starbucks gift card and lots of hugs and kisses from my Bug. Hubby even ordered me the most epic cake ever. Half Green Bay Packers,  half Texas Longhorns, yellow cake, butter cream frosting...yum in a box. Not to mention purple (my fave!) flowers!

It really was a lovely touch. Too bad the cake was filled with strawberries. This may not seem like a big deal to many of you, but I am allergic to strawberries (amongst other things). Like, I carry an epi-pen so I won't die. I jokingly told hubby that the bakery either messed up or he was trying to kill me. He replied that he didn't have motive, but had he motive, he would have been more discreet. Super, I won't see it coming when he

So I call the bakery at Albertsons and ask to speak to a manager. I get Norma (real name, she should be shamed) and after explaining the situation she puts me on hold to ask the bakery staff. Unfortunately for her, I wasn't actually on hold and could hear her asking the mostly Spanish speaking crew. After many "Oh it's cause he asked for it like thats", "is she sure it's her allergy", "Did you say the name was Stephanie?", "the could just eat around it" and a few absolute denials that we bought the cake there, Norma informs me that they can't find the invoice. Seriously?! I informed her that we would be bringing the cake back momentarily and that I would like to speak to the store manager. She said "Yes, that's me?" I'm sorry, you don't know if you're the manager? Wow.

We were headed to a UTEP vs NMSU ladies basketball game shortly, so Hubby and Mom took the cake in the store while I waited in the car with the Bug. On of the bakers kept calling him Gary. They also informed him that Norma had just left, even though five minutes before she had said she'd be waiting for us. After the fear of God (it should have been immigration) was put into them, Hubby told them he wanted his money refunded and a second cake made for free. He picked it up this morning and it was only okay. Still looked cool and was Tiffany Poison free, but now I remember why Costco has the best cakes. It was the thought that counts in the end though.

On to the slaughter....I mean game. UTEP annihilated NMSU 63-27. The NMSU girls looked more like Barbie Dolls than basketball players. Clearly they should have spent less time on hair and makeup, and more on fundamentals. One girl, number 4, had a fucking Bump-it in her hair. I kid you not, The Jersey Shore was alive and well in the Don Haskins Center. Number 33 had this thick and long Heidi braid that she kept using to smack the UTEP players in the face with. Apparently, if you can't win, assault. The coach was even more awesome. He looked like Jack off of Just Shoot Me, a lot shorter and more Hispanic, but he never sat down and yelled the entire time. Obviously he was unaware that his coaching strategy wasn't working.

The UTEP ladies were polar opposites. Our team consists of mostly black girls who look like they could fuck you up with their pinkies. They are mostly under six feet and scrappy, fierce, loud and quite frankly, fearless. We have a few Eastern European chicks, but the black girls rock. Is it possible to call them "some nappy headed hos" like Don Imus did and mean it in a good way? Controversial descriptions aside, go see a Lady Miner basketball game if you have an opportunity. Such heart and skill. Worth it (even thought the tickets range from free to 10 bucks...mostly free).

Well, gotta finish up y homework and then gets my knitting ons. More tomorrow!
Monday, November 14, 2011 1 comments

(It's Not Me) Talking

Last Thursday's class was all about interpersonal communication and listening barriers. Well, after each group presented with a PowerPoint about their assigned topic. We'll knock out the presentations and then get to the good stuff.

I, as always, crafted a wonderful presentation about interrogations and the legalities of certain techniques used and a very informative section on false confessions with some alarming statistics. Had I been presenting this myself, there would have been a standing ovation given that lasted anywhere from 3 to 9 min, followed by requests for me to teach the class. This thing was choice. I even included the "Good Cop, Baby Cop" video spoofing an interrogation from It was brilliant. Unfortunately, my team is not. Right before class, Tejas Mo tells me he has a video he wants to play instead of us presenting our presentation. He says it is a video that HE MADE and it sums up our whole topic. I politely tell him that we have already submitted the presentation to be graded and that we cannot add anything else. He says "NOooooo, not to add it mira. Insteeeeed." I tell him that this is simply not an option, but he tries to convince Joe Cool that we should do it. Joe Cool sort of looks at the video and I glance over to see that it is NOT a video he made, but a segment from a documentary on the border patrol that I recently watched on the History channel. Nothing to do with interrogation tactics and nothing at all to do with our assigned topic.

So our instructor starts class and Tejas Mo interrupts her to inform her that he wants to play a video for the class instead of us doing our presentation. I am emphatically shaking my head no and as she is trying to hold in her laughter, she winks at me and tells him "Well, I think you should discuss that with your group and then your team leader can let me know". He says "Oh, well they said no but I made it and it's really good." I couldn't hold it in. I look at him and say "Oh, you produced and directed a documentary on the border patrol for the History Channel? Wow, what are you doing here then". He quickly backed down, but not before mumbling in Spanish that I was something. I wanna say he said sucia but he not only has an accent, he has a gay lisp so it;s hard to tell.

We presented and I swear to Bob, this had to have been Tejas Mo's first time looking at the presentation. He tried to to my part, he tried to talk over the video and he kept interrupting Joe Cool and I saying that his video HE MADE would have covered it. Our instructor, who needs a name since she'll be my teacher again soon, finally closed her grading book and asked him to sit down so Joe Cool and I could do it right. I think I'll call her Dark Phoenix. She's kind of a bad ass in law enforcement and teaches at fictitious bird university so it'll have to do. the other two groups followed and no surprise, even with our Tejas Mo fucking it up, we were still better. Just a word of advice, if you are not a native/fluent English speaker, please take note that RAPPORT and REPORT are not the same thing.

We then took this little quiz to determine our communication style. No surprise, I am an Assertor. What was a surprise was that 4 other people were as well....well, until Dark Phoenix read the traits and they all realized they didn't add their totals correctly. I was then the only Assertor. Tejas Mo's total said he was a Demonstrator. Here are some traits that were listed: somewhat disorganized, have trouble being on time and keeping track of details, wear bright colors, and sits in an open posture. Tejas Mo looks at these and says "Well, I do like bright colors". Really, that's all you see? REALLY?

After that, we had to list our PERSONAL listening barriers and interpersonal barriers. I put that my need to be right was a listening barrier. Well, not so much that I have to be right, but I want others to admit that they are wrong. If I am talking with someone who is unable to see reason, I tend to tune them out. I had a long list of interpersonal barriers, all of which Tejas Mo fit into. I put down that people who are unmotivated, smelly, liars, and needy are people that I am unable and unwilling to communicate with. We had to discuss these as a group and come up with solutions to these barriers. Joe Cool listed similar barriers to mine and we both said that the only solution was to not be around these types of people. Tejas Mo apparently didn't get this task either because he said his listening barrier was finishing peoples sentences. I said "Okay, but do you think that maybe you also have selective hearing? Because when you had to introduce me to the class, you just made up a bunch of stuff about me that wasn't true and I had already told you what to say". He replied with "Oh, I think that's like finishing sentences". *Slaps hand across own forehead*

Dark Phoenix went around the room and asked each person to say what there barriers were and the solution. TejasMo said his was "like when people gossip about me". How he got that from finishing people's sentences and selective hearing, I guess we'll never know. Tejas Mo also interrupted me and says "And you have to be minded like a window." What. The. Fuck.

Me: Oh, do you mean open minded?
TM: No. Because a window closes.
Me: Okay, but it opens as well, so you're saying that MY personal barrier is that I need to be minded like a closed window?
TM: Yes. Of course.
Me: Perhaps you mean that I need to be minded like a screen door, because that still allows some things to flow through.
TM: No, that's astupid.

Rico Suave joined in by telling Tejas Mo that he is by far the stupidest mother fucker he has ever met. Tejas Mo said "You just don't get it because your minded like a door". I pretty much lost all faith in humanity after that.

Some memorable moments:
I had to explain what the word "frugal" meant, as well as what "quick-witted" meant to the four people surrounding me. I actually had to give a second definition for quick-witted because the first time I replied with "Something you will never be".

Dark Phoenix said that if we learned to control our interpersonal barriers, we would be golden (my last name) and then she looked at me and said "Pun not intended", to which Tejas Mo said "what's that? Pun? Like an ass?"

Organizing is now OrGANzing. The not native English speaking kid in the other group told me that I was saying it wrong because it is OrGANzing. This is also the same kid that thinks RAPPORT and REPORT are the same thing and that Tiffany is pronounced with some rolled R's in it. Don't ask me where he added them, I cannot for the life of me figure out how to pronounce my name with rolled R's.

Sunday, November 13, 2011 1 comments

Who Do You Think You Are?

This blog is TWO weeks in the making. Actually, ten years in the making, but I meant to write this one two weeks ago. I would tell you what happened in school two Thursdays ago, but it's what happened when I got home from school two Thursdays ago that is really the spotlight.

Class was actually pretty blog worthy too. My fucking filthy, fat and lazy teammate Tejas Mo didn't do his portion of our assignment and gave me 14 different conflicting excuses why which culminated in me telling him how fucking lazy and stupid he is and our instructor giving him zero credit. I had a whole blog written on it in my head to type out when I got home (our instructor has a no comp policy when others are presenting) but something magical happened when I pulled in the driveway.

Let me back it up a bit. The scum of the earth live across the street from us. They have since we moved to Texas 10 years ago. Every neighbor on the block came over and warned us of all there crazy experiences with this family and told us to be careful. The six children used to have knock down drag out fights in the front yard, screaming matches between the mom and ex-husband, and one time the oldest daughter ran away once to our house and told us all about how all of the children had been molested and sodomized by the step-dad and his friend (aged 60+ at the time) and how she hated her crazy mom so much. My mother called the cops, like you're supposed to, but the girl recanted and said we made the whole thing up. One time, no shit, I witnessed the oldest daughter giving the old man step dad a lap dance in the drive way. Granted, it took home an average of ten min to get from his car to the front door so maybe she was providing motivation.

Anyway, before I had left for the Air Force, the cops had been to that house probably 100+ times on anything from curfew violations, noise, fighting, restraining orders (the girl had a crazy bf who is now the father of her child...and the three she aborted before that) and abuse charges. While I was away, my parents said it was even worse. They built a second story to their home ad moved even more people in. On any given night, there are 6-11 cars parked out front. Almost every night, they blast music until the wee hours and her now 15 year old youngest daughter gets drunk and high in the front yard with her siblings and friends.

We've called the cops a million times. So has most of the neighborhood. However, no one ever leaves a name out of fear of retaliation. They actually called the health department on our cats, saying that we were feeding strays. Our chipped, fixed, vaccinated and registered cats. I was tempted to cut them myself for one, using the law to attempt revenge, and two, for fucking with my animals, but I didn't. I told myself that no scheme I could dream up would do to them what karma would. Boy oh boy was I right.

The Saturday before Halloween they threw a party. No surprise. These are the same people that put a bouncy castle in their driveway on a Tuesday for no reason. So 11pm hit and I got everyone in our house plus some neighbors to call in the noise violation, curfew violations and to also mention the strong smell of pot. About 1230 am or 1 am the cops show up. I meet them outside before they go over there and I lay it on thick. I mean truly Oscar worthy if I do say so myself. I tell them that these people are just so scary and that they have made every ones life hell. I tell them the music keeps everyone up (they actually turned it up more while I was talking to the cops). I told them that my poor 3 year old baby girl couldn't sleep because her window faces them (all while looking at the female cop...she was sooo on my side after that). I told them how we were sick of living in fear that our cars would be vandalized or that beer bottles would be smashed in the street. I look the male cop straight in his eyes and said "I'm just so grateful that EPPD has officers like you that truly care". It was amazing.

They told me to go inside so the Douchbag family wouldn't see me and the male said "Ma'am, you shouldn't have to live in fear. We'll handle this." So what if it was said to my breasts....whatever works. So they went over. It took almost 10 min for someone to come to the door. I couldn't hear anything, but the crazy mom tried to slam the door in the male officers face. He kept it open with a stiff arm and it looked pretty heated. The female officer put her hand on her weapon a few times. I was hoping for a shoot out, but it ended in a citation. The Douchebags went back inside, but the officers stuck around and took down the plate of every car there....

One plate in particular was important. The Old Man step dad's. Little did we know, Paul H. Flynn, 78, of El Paso, Texas, had a warrant out for his arrest. We learned of this two Wednesdays ago when EP County Sheriff's, EPPD SWAT and ICE agents raided their house. I mean kickin' down doors, scaling walls and the whole nine yards. Evidence was seized, weapons removed and a kindly SWAT guy let us know to BOLO for Mr. Flynn. The warrant was for Felony Theft less than 100,000 but greater than 20,000....but three agencies don't kick in your damn door for theft. Apparently he was wanted for some other stuff they haven't been able to prove yet.

So the following night, I get home from class and I am flabbergasted to see his Lincoln with it's handicapped plate (he uses a cane and has a mean hunchback) sitting boldly in their driveway. I call 911 as instructed by the police to do so and tell them that he is there. How fucking stupid are you to go back there? I mean shit, they raided your house, you don't think they'll come back????

EPPD sorta kinda fucked this one up. Four units descended on the house in a staggered formation, but the oldest daughter was going to her car as they did. She ran back inside (to warn everyone) and then came back out with her bat shit mother and they told the cops that he escaped out the back door and hopped a rock wall into the storm ditch behind their house. Really. A 78-year-old man with a cane hopped a 8 foot high rock wall and escaped. I thought "Surely they can't believe this, they're gonna check the house" but no. Didn't happen. 3 of the 4 officers went into the gas line, under the fence, and into the storm ditch to search. They came back out 15 min later and took off. We saw them driving in the subdivision behind ours with spotlights. Every 5 to 10 min we would see a patrol car drive down our street. Finally, after an hour or two the old man slowly....and I mean with steps that seemed eternally slow...hobbles out to his car with his 32 year junior wife following.

We called 911 to inform them that not only had the officers been duped, he was trying to flee again. Oh, did I fail to mention we were sitting in our neighbors driveway with hot cocoa and popcorn? No joke. Nothing is better than witnessing Karma at work first hand. Anyway, the cops finally apprehended him at his OTHER house a few blocks away. He was booked and released on a bond that they put their house up as collateral for.

I had a brief, yet very entertaining verbal altercation with one of the sons that he raped the next day as well. Yes, I am going to hell, but as he told me to go suck off my father, I had no choice but to reply "Oh sorry, I'm not into that. I hear you really liked getting ass raped by the felon though. Your sister told us all about it. Did he make you call him daddy?" Even Hubby informed me I was gonna burn for that one. Worth it I think. All he could reply with was that I was a whore and a bitch and fucking stupid. He drove off spastically while flipping me off and making cock sucking motions to which I said "I hear you are good at that!" and then a "God Bless" for good measure.

It's been all quiet on the western front since then. Well, someone broke a beer bottle in front of our car that was parked on the street last night. The glass was politely swept up and placed in their driveway. I'm hoping they are actually stupid enough to try something. I would love for him to get his bail revoked or for him to flee and they lose the house. I am tempted to stage Operation Hip Replacement where I kidnap the old man and prevent him from making his court date. Too much?

Anyway, stand by for blog #2 of the night. It's back to school.