30 April 2006

Here's A Heads Up

Well it's just about May and just so you're aware, we have a few hot button issues coming up here on Pique A Boo. The first of which will likely be immigration. I have lots (and lots) to say about that, even before the May Day Protests. The immigration debate has turned into a real "issue" but it seems pretty cut and dry to me. We'll get into that this week.

And also church, not necessarily religion, but church. Namely if I should keep going to a church that seems to be trying to line me up as part of an agenda with which I don't agree. The obvious answer is no, but it's really not that simple.

So in summary: immigration debate = really simple but overly hyped while going to church = seemingly simple but overly complex.

As you can see, we have lots to discuss.

27 April 2006

Now Emmy Nominated

I am so excited I don't even know what to tell you. I have been nominated for an Emmy. A real Emmy. They have them for newscasts you know. The place where I work (which shall remain nameless) requires all producers to enter at least one show for Emmy Nominations. I only had one to enter. And do you know what? It was nominated for an Emmy!

The now Emmy Nominated show was produced on August 31, 2005, just two months after I left Fargo. The focus for most of the hour was Hurricane Katrina. It's a show I kept because I was proud of it. And now it's gotten me an Emmy Nomination.

Scroll down to page 2 and you'll see it. I'm up for Evening Newscast Las Vegas. I'm so excited, I just don't even know what to do! I could win an EMMY. Unbelievable.

18 April 2006

Jason & Nora Came to Town

Every 6 months, the National Hot Rod Association comes to Vegas. For me, that translates to a good time. Slap yourself for thinking I'm a racing fan, because that is most certainly not the case. But my friend Jason (IC '02) works for ESPN and travels with the NHRA. When it's time for him to come to Vegas, he brings fiance Nora (IC '02) and his brother Brian comes in from LA. This time Nora's sister Rita came too (she turned 21 just in time). The last time they came it was pre-blog. Thank goodness I got my act together. Anyway, in this picture starting from me and heading to your right (my left in the picture) are Rita, Nora, Brian, Jesse, and Jason.

This is a picture of Jason & Nora in October 2005, followed by a picture of them in April 2006. The difference? Some hair dye and an engagement ring. The first picture is at the I-Bar at the Rio. We went there after some drinks at the Palms and before Rain and Mist at Treasure Island and food at the 27 Seven Cafe.

The next picture is from dinner at the
Orleans, after drinks at the Orleans, The Bar at Time Square, Mist, and a really quick stop at the I-Bar. Basically we got to the I-Bar, realized we were all either drunk or hungry, and headed over to the Orleans. And if you're worried: we took cabs all night. And if you're interested: they will not let you take 6 people, not even in a van. Some county code or some such nonsense. We argued it at taxi stand after taxi stand. They seemed to be pretty intent on obeying the law.

We spent the most time at Mist and even though the peanut butter and jelly sandwiches cost $8, I thought the drink prices were reasonable. Which could show you that I've been here for too long because the Captain Cokes were $7. I know that's reasonable in a lot of places. But I turned 21 in Fargo. So I got used to a lot of drinks for a little bit of money. Now I'm assimilating. And Jesse would rather not go out at all. Anyone who knows Jesse knows that's a HUGE deal. Oh, and I have no idea what's so funny.

While we were at Mist, Rita made a drunk friend who wanted to dance with us. I remember she was 26 but here for her cousin's 21st birthday. But the cousin wasn't nearly as drunk as the older cousin. I think there's something backwards about that. Once we started dancing, I started taking pictures. They started to posing constantly, just in case.
I ended up with some good pictures.

So that was their trip here. Jason worked and Nora & Rita saw the sites and drank the booze. A good time was had by all. I leave you with two pictures of me & Jason. The first is from October 2005 and the second from April 2006. Ready? Here we are:

16 April 2006

Walking For Healthy Breasts

Did that get your attention? Good! Now let's see if I can hold on to it long enough to get some money out of you. On May 6, I will be walking in the Susan G. Komen Las Vegas Race for the Cure. If you know me, you know boobies are near and dear to my heart (mostly near). While I do not know anyone who has had breast cancer, the foundation says one in seven women will get it. According to my calculations, I know more than 5 women, so I should help out.

I'm walking with a group from my job. Technically the group has already reached it's goal but I just signed up last week. So I'm asking for $5 from you. You can donate anonymously if you'd like and of course you are free to donate more than $5. My theory is that if I get $5 from everyone, I'll raise more than if I get three or four big donations. So please please please donate. Breasts across the country will thank you.

14 April 2006

I've Joined the Dark Side

If you haven't heard, I joined myspace.com. I had been resisting it for a really long time. More than a few of my friends have myspace accounts, but I always thought it was too unsophisticated. So what changed? Nothing, in fact I'm less of a fan after joining that I was when I thought it was for teens and child predators. But there were reasons for joining, for example:
  • A lot of people I used to know use myspace.com. Now I can reconnect with them and chat with them whenever I want.
  • I can also refer those people to Pique A Boo, which will remain my priority. Those people with whom I have lost contact will now be able to follow my adventures.
  • A lot of people I currently know use myspace.com. Actually, that's not really a good reason to join, since I talk to them already.
  • But Anyone who knew me and wants to find me would likely use myspace.com. That (plus friendster) has worked for Angie and Katrina. I'm standing firm against friendster too. We'll see how long that lasts.
  • Also, at my job I hear about lots of criminals who use myspace.com. We have (in the past) needed myspace.com accounts in order to look at these pages. Now I have one to offer the next time some local weirdo commits some heinous act.

But I do not recommend myspace.com. It's not at all user friendly. You can design the look of your blog page, but not for your main page. There just isn't the option. And the Frequently Asked Questions page offers fantastic advice. Basically, if you want to spruce up your profile page, reach out and ask a stranger, because we won't help you here.

Once you spend hours finding a profile background that isn't pink and purple sparkles, and pick a song, and design your blog, you have to go to one spot to leave comments. You have to go somewhere else to view your blog. There's another place to view friend requests, which is near the place you go to get your messages and search for other people.

The whole thing is too much clutter. And it's ugly. And it had ads. But I added a pet fish. Plus Dane Cook accepted my friend request and I've found a lot of people I'd forgotten that I liked. So if you are a member, here's my page. If you're not, don't worry about it. It just refers people back here.

13 April 2006

Lots of Family Pictures

Well at this point, I think I've said all I can say about the fun I had with my family. Still, there are some who have not yet been seen. So I'll give you some quick introductions and a few more pictures to "button up the coverage" as we say at my job.

This is my oldest cousin, Junior. That's not his real name, but it's one of the two names family members call him. The cousins call him Junior. Grandma and the Aunts call him Papa. There's a story behind that from when he was like 2, or before I was born. Therefore it's not that important.

Junior is the oldest cousin and comes from the oldest aunt, Aunt Mary Ann. Yes, I have an Aunt Mary Ann and an Aunt Marion. They are not at all alike. Anyway, Junior now has a son, he's the second of the great grandchildren. His name is Gabe. If this picture were a painting, it would be called "Three Generations Eating At A Buffet." You may notice Junior winking and Gabe about to wink, it's something they do. In fact, this is the only picture where Gabe posed and didn't have his eye completely closed.

This is another of my favorite pictures. This my mommy and Dayana in the buffet line. Aren't they precious?

Next is Dayana and her uncle (my cousin) Glenn Jr. Oh yeah, that's another thing we have a lot of: juniors. There's Junior (so called because he's named after his father), Derek Jr. (my brother), Glenn Jr., and Jerry Jr. Jordan is not a junior (but his middle name is his father's). For some reason, the boys in my family are mostly copycats. Then again, so am I. I'm Danielle from my father's Donnell (middle name) but I'm not a junior.

These are Tonekia's children, Jahkheim and Dayana. Like I said, my cousin Tonekia couldn't come. So we tried to get them to pose together. But they hardly know each other.

Okay, now I think you've met everyone. But I doubt you can remember anyone without looking. In attendance at our impromptu reunion was one grandma, 4 aunts, 8 grandchildren, and three great grandchildren. Plus Vicki and my Aunt Mary Ann's boyfriend Sam. We took lots of group pictures. Here are a few:

11 April 2006

Time to Meet the Family: II

When last we met, we were reuniting my family. We had met my brother, four cousins, and two aunts. The reuniting was fun, but we were soon hungry. Aunt Marion took us to the greatest buffet off the strip: the Golden Corral. I think going to a buffet was a genius idea. I showed my appreciation by eating until I was close to vomiting. Delicious.

Now to the rest of my family. That's my grandma in the middle with the gray hair. To the left of Grandma Mary Lou, is my cousin Jerry Jr., then my brother, Derek Jr., cousin Jordan, cousin Ray, and my cousin Charmaine.

Charmaine has quite the story. Two years ago she was in a really bad car accident. She was in a coma for months and the doctors said she would be in a vegetative state for the rest of her life. As you can see, doctors are liars. She's not the same: her speech, memory, and walking are all worse. But she's alive, she recognizes all of us, and we're really happy about that.

My little grandma now has three great grandchildren. I know, it's unbelievable. There's Dayana (9 months) and her older brother Jahkheim (4). He's the one with the big smile. Their mother is my cousin Tonekia. She couldn't come because she's spending some quality time with the state of Georgia. Then there's Gabe (2). Gabe is Junior's son. Junior. Is my oldest cousin.

After we ate, we went for a drive. This is Dayana in the car, happily breaking the law outside of her car seat. We were supposed to be meeting the mother of my second cousin to come. But the mission was deliberately sabotaged. We ended up back at the hotel for more monopoly. It started with Derek getting Boardwalk and Park Place right away. Meanwhile I was sent to jail three or four consecutive times without passing go. I ended up being pulled away from the game by my Aunt Mary Ann. I ruined (or so I was told) but my chances of winning were slim anyway.

On Friday, my crew was the last one ready. For my mother, that's unheard of. She's always first but on that day, much of the group showered the night before or didn't shower at all. Here are my Aunts Shelia and Marion waiting for us. So my mother didn't mind that we were last, because we were clean. We had missed breakfast and were waiting for the Golden Corral to open for lunch. So it was prime time for pictures.

And again, I high recommend the Golden Corral. The Iced Tea was sweetened, which is something I miss.

Here are Ray & Dayana. Don't ask me how Ray got her to give the same smile. The next picture is Aunt Shelia with Jerry Jr., Ray, and Jordan. That's followed by a picture of just Ray (I told you she liked to pose), Jordan, Gabe, and Jahkheim.

Jordan is wearing Jeans with boots on them. The boots have laces that were just hanging there. Three dimensional clothes are all the rage you know. Gabe started pulling on the laces. Jordan asked him what he was doing and Gabe said "I'm tying your shoes." Does it get any cuter? Nope.

As you can tell by the size of our press corps, Some are more photogenic than others. So I'll do my best to make sure everyone gets included. On the left side of this picture is my Aunt Mary Ann. At this point I don't remember if you've ever seen her before. But if you have, there she is again. Next to her is Charmaine, Vicki, my mother (Adrean), and Derek holding Dayana.

As you can see, we don't need a reason to take pictures. This group is happy to take pictures. We're all smiles. Grandma is a tougher cookie. But she's got plenty of jokes. A word to the wise: she keeps an iron bar under the front seat in her car and she is not afraid to use it. In fact, I think she's looking for a fight. She said to my mother: "I need to pray harder."

Yikes. I have a lot more pictures and not a whole lot left to say. So until next time.

09 April 2006

Time to Meet the Family: I

Eventually, we all arrived at the hotel. In the time in takes to organize 16 people in 4 rooms (and wait f or 2 more to arrive), you can take a lot of pictures, including pictures of people taking pictures. And that's exactly what I did. Vicki and Dayana were happy to stretch their legs. That's right, Vicki is wearing purple boots to match her purple shirt. I left mine in... Okay I've never bought purple boots. But Vicki has at least two pairs, so I might. But then I'd need a purple shirt, so nevermind.

This is my Aunt Shelia and her daughter (my cousin) Sharabia (Ray). The little blue head belongs to Jahkeim. He's Dayana's older brother and was my first second cousin. He lives with my Aunt Shelia in Florida. Ray's younger brother is Jerry Jr. He likes to take pictures. Ray prefers to pose.

This is my Aunt Marion. Growing up, I remember her laughing at us a lot. And it looks like she's still at it. She's Jordan's mother. They used to live in Durham, so she knew the best place to eat, being a buffet. More on that later. But for now, this is my Aunt Marion.

While I'm trying to fill some space, I'd like to raise a cultural question. Jesse calls his aunts and uncles by their first names. As far as I know, no black person has ever done that and escaped a swift slap to the mouth. Is that one of those white people things? Or one of those Jensen things?

There's much more family to meet, but in order to maintain my chronological storytelling I have to take us to the food.