Almost Never Boring…

and often easily amused

Some Nerdy Fun… 19 March 2008

Filed under: Nerdiness,Randomness — laughinglaura @ 21:49

So… I found this on Chelf’s blog…   I did pretty well, but I think I could have done better if I were typing actual sentences instead of typing random words strung together in no particular order.  That made it a lot harder to read ahead b/c it didn’t make much sense and was therefore harder to remember.   I’m sure that laying down on the couch with my laptop propped up against my legs probably didn’t help my score, either.  Maybe I’ll give it a shot at work tomorrow when I’m using proper typing posture…

 Camille has been trying to convince me to learn DVORAK…  This would definitely be a useful tool if I ever decide to give it a shot. 

DRAT – it’s not showing the pretty graphic it’s supposed to… But anyway, 

I type 93 words per minute.



A prayer request… 14 March 2008

Filed under: Prayer Requests — laughinglaura @ 22:25

I want to apologize for not finishing up my series…  Some stuff – good and bad – has been going on at work and I haven’t had the time/gumption.  I’ll try to get finished up by the end of the weekend, but I’m not making any promises.  I’m absolutely NOT in a storytelling mood…

I don’t really want to say much else about it at the moment…  Please just pray that I’ll have peace about the whole situation and for me to trust God to work everything out in His time.  Thanks.


The Truth Revealed, Part V… 13 March 2008

Filed under: fact or fiction,Funny Stuff,People Watching,Randomness,Travel — laughinglaura @ 11:03

Another day, another reveal… In case you’re just joining this program…  A couple weeks ago I posted seven items, three were true, four were lies, and challenged my readers to guess which was which.  This week, I’ve been posting one answer/story for five days (Sun – today) and will post the final two answers/stories on tomorrow. You can find the original post here, I’ve also included links to Parts III, III, & IV

5. A friend and I once drove around the “ghetto” of Montgomery, AL, on a Saturday night in a purple PT cruiser with lavender and fuchsia flames painted on the side.

Status:  TRUE

In August 3, 2002, my friend Leigh Ann got married, and I was in the wedding.  LeighAnn had picked me up at the airport in Montgomery on the Wednesday before the wedding, but she, of course, wasn’t able to take me back to the airport.  Instead, that job fell to our friend Mark who had flown in from Tennessee for the shindig. 

Mark was supposed to have arrived on Friday night, but his first flight was delayed due to some bad weather, so he missed his connecting flight which, of course, was the last flight to Montgomery for the evening.  The airline was able to get Mark on the first flight out on Saturday morning, but when he arrived in Montgomery, the car rental agency had no record of his reservation AND no available cars.  Nice, eh?  Well, Mark went to a couple other rental counters and finally found an available car.  But this wasn’t just a normal ‘ol rental car…  No siree…  This was a metallic purple PT Cruiser (remember – this was in 2002 just after they came out) with lavender and fuchsia flames stenciled on the sides.  Check out the pictures below…

The PT Cruiser – I wish I’d been able to get a better shot of the flames painted on the sides, but you get the general idea…

Mark with the PT Cruiser
mark with ptcruiser

Me with the PT Cruiser – notice I’m holding the keys in my right hand…
laura with ptcruiser

So…  Now that I’ve explained how we wound up in such an ostentatious car, you’re probably wondering what we were doing driving around the ghetto of Montgomery, AL, late on a Saturday night…

Well…  Mark and I had pre-arranged our flights so that they left within something like 45 min of each other on Sunday afternoon.  We had initially planned to stay in Opp (Leigh Ann’s hometown) on Saturday night and then head back to Montgomery on Sunday morning, but Mark decided that he’d rather go to Montgomery on Saturday night so we’d already be in town for our flights, and so we’d be able to attend worship services on Sunday morning.  We stuck around after the wedding helping wrap up loose ends, then had to change clothes, pack up (well, I had to pack – Mark had never had a chance to unpack), and say our goodbyes…  It was probably 9pm before we even got on the road, and it was a two-ish hour drive back to Montgomery. 

 Having not seen each other in close to two years, Mark and I had plenty of catching up to do, and the two hour drive back to Montgomery passed quickly.  So quickly, in fact, that when we reached town and the road that we were supposed to take to get to the part of town we were planning to stay in, we didn’t realize that we were there until it was too late to turn.  So, we had to continue on the road we were already on until we found a place to turn around.  And, well, it turned out that the part of town we were in had seen its better days.  Luckily, we found a gas station to turn around in pretty quickly so we didn’t drive very deep into the ghetto.

However, the gas station where we turned around just happened to be the local, Saturday night hang-out for folks who liked to show off their “pimped rides.”  You know what I mean…  Fancy paint jobs, gold rims, names stenciled on the windows, low Low LOW riders…  Yeah…  *those* kinds of cars.  And here we were two “preppy” white folk, from out of town, semi-lost, driving through the gas station parking lot in a metallic purple PT Cruiser with lavender and fuchsia flames stenciled on the sides.  You should’ve seen the looks we were getting…  I just had to laugh at the absurdity of it all – it makes me laugh, even now, to think about it… 

Mark, ever the attentive driver, was focused on getting us back to where we needed to be and was oblivious to the looks we were getting.  So when I started laughing, he was confused and asked what was so funny, so I had to explain…

“Think about it, Mark…  You’re a white boy…  We’re in the *ghetto* of Montgomery, AL…  And we’re driving past all these souped up, pimped out rides in a *metallic purple* PT Cruiser with *lavender and fuchsia flames* stenciled on the sides…  You should see the looks we’re getting…”

As I finished my explanation you could see the light bulb turn on in Mark’s head as he realized the absurdity of the situation and joined in my laughter…  FUN times!  

Congratulations to Stephanie, Boone, David, and Megan for correctly predicting that item five was true.  😀


The Truth Revealed, Part IV… 12 March 2008

Filed under: fact or fiction,Funny Stuff,Randomness,Travel — laughinglaura @ 13:55

Fourth in this week’s “fact or fiction” series… I am posting one answer/story for five days (Sun – Thurs) and will post the final two answers/stories on Friday. One whole week of blogging from me – don’t you feel special? You can find the original post here, I’ve also included links to Part I and Part II, and Part III

4. While driving through Kansas late one night (I know I have a lot of “late one night” stories, but I’m a night owl, what do you expect?), I happened through a speed trap operated by the county sheriff’s department, was stopped for absolutely no reason, and received a ticket for “failure to monitor.”

Status: FALSE

Though almost true…  One night about 9pm, I was driving through Kansas on I-70, somewhere between Salina and Topeka, on my way home to Missouri to visit the family.  As I was driving, I noticed red and blue flashing lights ahead, and slowed down to the speed limit (I had been going eight over).  As I passed the first officer who had someone stopped, I signaled and pulled into the left lane.  I remained in the left lane as I passed a second, third, and then fourth police cruiser…  All with lights flashing…  All with someone stopped…

 “Self,” I said, “the local sheriff’s deputies seem to be awfully bored tonight, you’d better be on your best behavior…”

A few moments later, I noticed red and blue flashing lights in my rear-view mirror.  I signaled, slowed, and pulled to the shoulder of the interstate.  While waiting for the officer to approach, I readied my license, proof of insurance, and registration.  A couple minutes after I was stopped, the officer approached my car, and asked me the usual questions…  How I was doing, where I was headed, etc.  Then he took the paraphernalia I had gathered, and went back to do his “thing.” 

I knew I hadn’t done anything wrong, because I had been on my best driving behavior once I realized I was passing through a routine traffic stop area, but getting stopped is always a bit nerve wracking.  Especially the waiting… 

 After what seemed like a good ten minutes, though it was probably closer to two, the officer returned holding the dreaded slip of paper…  “I’m going to let you go with a warning (note: not a ticket), he said.”  Even though he never told me why I’d been stopped in the first place…  I thanked him, playing Ms. Polite Driver, and began to ready myself to pull back onto the interstate from the shoulder.  The officer was ready before I was and pulled back onto the highway just in time to stop the next car that passed him (I promise – he didn’t even get up to the speed limit before he stopped that car). 

When I finally got to MO, I told the family about how I was stopped in KS for no reason, and we had a good laugh about it.  They asked what I had been warned for, and I said I didn’t know b/c I wasn’t told…  So, we pulled out the dreaded slip of paper, and noticed that in the comments section the officer had written “failure to monitor.” 

Monitor what?  Your guess is as good as mine… 

Congratulations to Boone, David, and Megan for correctly identifying item four as false. 😀


The Truth Revealed, Part III… 11 March 2008

Filed under: fact or fiction,Funny Stuff,Randomness — laughinglaura @ 14:00

Third in this week’s “fact or fiction” series…  I am posting one answer/story for five days (Sun – Thurs) and will post the final two answers/stories on Friday.  One whole week of blogging from me – don’t you feel special?  You can find the original post here, I’ve also included links to Part I and Part II

3. I tried out for American Idol, and made it through the first couple rounds, but wasn’t good (or bad) enough to audition for Randy, Paula, and Simon.

Status:  FALSE

 Unfortunately, I don’t have a really good story to go with this one.  I posted it because most folks know I sing pretty well, and was even blessed with the opportunity to participate in a couple of international chorus tours while in college.  I figured that I might be able to trick a few folks into picking this fiction as truth based on their knowledge of my singing abilities…  Of course, that’s what I was trying to do with all seven of my scenarios, and I did so quite well, if I do say so myself, since no one correctly classified all seven items.

Of course, y’all know that I wouldn’t post something that I didn’t have at least a a little something to share about, so here is my AI non-audition anecdote…

My youngest sister is 15, and back when Idol first came out, she was a HUGE fan.  She wanted to audition for the show, but she was obviously too young.  Approximately four or five years ago, just after the maximum age limit for Idol hopefuls was raised from 23 (or whatever it was) to 29, my sis and I had a conversation similar to the following…  NOTE: Sis would have been 10-11 at the time

Sis:  They raised the audition age limit, I think you should audition for American Idol.

Me: It’s really not my thing, plus I don’t think I’m good enough to audition

Sis:  Sure you are…  You’re better than pretty much everyone on there.

Me: no comment, just a very skeptical expression

Sis:  If you audition, you’d definitely make to Hollywood, and you’d probably make the top ten, but you wouldn’t win…

Siblings…  Gotta love ’em…  😛

Congratulations to Char, Stephanie, David, Camille, Megan, and Laura (six of my eight voters) for correctly guessing item three was untrue.  😀 


The Truth Revealed, Part II… 10 March 2008

Filed under: fact or fiction,Funny Stuff,People Watching,Randomness,Travel — laughinglaura @ 14:00

Second in this week’s “fact or fiction” series…  I am posting one answer/story for five days (Sun – Thurs) and will post the final two answers/stories on Friday.  One whole week of blogging from me – don’t you feel special?  You can find the original post here, and the answer to part I here.  And without further ado, Part II is revealed…

2. When traveling late one night, I stopped for gas, then got confused when I tried to get back onto the interstate and wound up driving the wrong direction for an entire hour before I realized I was going the wrong way.

Status:  FALSE

As most people know, I’m pretty good with maps and directions.  My mom prefers to sleep on trips, so I was the “navigator” from the time I was about seven or eight and could read maps. 

That being said, the inspiration for this particular choice was a story from my friend Alison.  Several years ago, Alison met a young Naval officer on a christian singles website and after they talked for a week or two, they decided to meet in person.  They chose a location approximately halfway in between their locations (and where Alison was familiar with the area and what there was to do).  Alison arrived at the destination with plenty of time to spare, checked into the hotel for the both of them since the young seaman was running behind, and paid for both rooms for the first night of their two night stay, having agreed with the gentleman that he would pay for both rooms for the second night upon his arrival. 

Alison’s young friend finally arrived several hours later than planned (so much for military promptness), and the two enjoyed a late dinner and retired to their separate rooms.  The next morning they got up and spent the day exploring the town where they had met.  When they returned to their hotel to freshen up before dinner, Alison discovered that the key card to her room did not work.  She went down to the front desk to discover that the supposed “upstanding” officer had not paid for the second night at the hotel as they had agreed, and all of Alison’s belongings had been removed from her room and were sitting in the hotel manager’s office. 

Alison was able to retrieve her belongings, and went ahead and paid for HER second night’s stay.  Why did she have to pay for her room when her “friend” was supposed to have paid for it?  Remember, Alison had paid for both rooms for first night, so he was supposed to cover the second.

Well…  When Alison found out what happened, and approached this “gentleman” about it, she discovered that he hadn’t paid for the rooms because he was broke.  Apparently, the young seaman had stopped at several rest-stops along the way and purchased a variety of “gifts” for Alison…  Kitschy, interstate rest-stop type gifts…  Gifts that can only be politely described as “crap.”  And while at one of these stops, this young man somehow wound up getting mixed up and drove for something like an hour and a half in the wrong direction on I-10 before he realized that he was going the wrong way…  Which is made all the more funny by the fact that this young man being a Naval officer, we can only presume that he sat through countless hours of classes where he learned to navigate by the stars. 

Well, he should have learned…  But having heard the entire story from Alison (this is just one small episode of a much longer and exponentially more hilarious tale) the fact that he got lost on I-10 is not incredibly surprising.  Perhaps someday Alison will return to the world of blogging and post the entire story.  It’s definitely a worthwhile read.  😀 

 Congratulations to Camille and Chelf for getting this second part of the challenge correct.  😀


The Truth Revealed, Part I… 9 March 2008

Filed under: fact or fiction,Funny Stuff,Randomness,Travel — laughinglaura @ 23:27

So…  A couple weeks ago I posted a list of seven items, three truths and four lies, and asked for y’all to vote on which ones you thought were/weren’t true.  My intention was to leave the post up for a week and then post an answer a day starting last Sunday.  However, the weather (which kept me in MO an extra day) and the flu bug (take two) had other ideas…  Camille has been kind enough to continue bugging me about posting the answers, so here goes…  I will post one answer/story for five days (today – Thurs) and will post the final two answers/stories on Friday.  One whole week of blogging from me – don’t you feel special?

1. Ten friends and I were kicked out of McDonald’s because our straw-flicking contest was frightening the other patrons.

Status: TRUE

My freshman year at Harding, the marching band was invited to Dallas, TX, to perform at the dedication ceremony for a new gymnasium at Dallas Christian Schools.  Early Friday morning (Halloween), we loaded into two chartered busses and set out for the six to seven-ish hour trip from Searcy to Dallas.  We were especially excited to discover that the chartered busses we were taking were equipped with VHS/video sysems and we would be able to watch movies, etc. during our trip.  I wound up on the bus led by our fearless director, Mr. Chance…  Mr. Chance’s idea of a great way to make use of the on-board video system was to watch recordings of old drum corp competitions.  Needless to say, by the time we reached Texarkana, AR/TX, our scheduled lunch stop, several of us were in an interesting mood… 

 The Mall in Texarkana has several restaurants, which made it an ideal stop for two bus-loads of college students to grab lunch fairly quickly.  The group I wound up eating with chose to eat at McDonald’s.  One thing that I should note.  The McD’s at this particular mall wasn’t a food court-type McD’s, but an actual restaurant attached to the mall.  Anyway…  The bunch of us who chose to eat at McD’s (I’m estimating there were about ten of us) got our food and sat down in one section of the restaurant.  Most of us had finished eating, and were just sitting around killing some time while the others finished, when someone got the bright idea that we should have a straw popping contest to see who could make the loudest pop. 

Most of you likely know what straw popping is, but I feel the need to include an explanation for the few who are unfamiliar with the process.  Straw-popping is a team sport.  One person pinches each end of a straw, then rolls the straw up – end over end – trapping air inside the straw.  Once the straw is rolled tightly, the second person flicks the middle of the straw, causng the plastic to burst, and the escaping air causes a loud pop. 

Well, when you have a group of ten folks, that breaks down to five “teams” of straw poppers.  And when you’ve got five sets of straws being popped at once, well, that makes for quite a racket.  So much of a racket, that only a few minutes into our little contest, the manager of that partcular McDonald’s restaurant approached our group, and informed us that we needed to leave the restaurant as our game was frightening the other patrons, who thought the straw popping sounded like gunfire.

Congratulations to Char, David, Camille, Megan, Laura, and Chelf, for getting this answer correct.  😀