Sunday, December 31, 2017

New Year's Eve with Old People

It's pitiful, really.  Miss Lake's first New Year's Eve as a prestigious award does not find her in the Little Apple of Manhattan, Kansas, awaiting the drop of a giant apple (No shit.  That's really a thing in Manhattan.  Apple drops 24 feet.  People go crazy.  Isn't a long trip for most of them.).  Nor is she out on the town in Wamego (We have two liquor stores, a bar, and 3 stop lights so it's possible).  

Nope, she's holed up with 2 old people who seem to think that 9:00 p.m. on NEW YEAR'S EVE is time to go to bed (and not "go to bed" if you know what I mean, and I think you do).

A contributing factor could be that it is ONE DEGREE outside which is pretty cold even for a solid gold award.  Miss Lake is, after all, wearing only a bikini.

Because I know you are curious, those are 5k race numbers on the bulletin board.  Sorry that I couldn't figure out a way to do a 5k AND carry Miss Lake along.  Frankly, it was all I could do to keep myself upright most of the time.

On behalf of Miss Lake and the Geriatric Unit of 901 Lilac Lane, happy new year - at whatever time you celebrate!

Christmas Greetings

Merry Christmas from Miss Lake Mexia, currently of Wamego, Kansas. While she could make some half-assed argument that she was a good girl this year, photos of her in close proximity to police cars on at least 4 occasions would tell a different story.

Hopefully, the year will end without Miss Lake having to pay a bondsman or waking up in a stranger's refrigerator.  Again.  (Don't ask.  It was an embarrassing situation for everyone involved.)

As near as anyone can tell, she is looking forward to her upcoming trip to Las Vegas.  No one should mention that she will be making the journey in a suitcase.  Some things are better left unsaid until the last minute.

Saturday, November 11, 2017

The Men of Alpha Gamma Rho

 Miss Lake had the pleasure of having dinner with the AGR men of Kansas State.
They thought she was a hoot (imagine that) and some suggestion was made about her being part of their float in the homecoming parade.   As it turned out, the sorority women who were actually in charge of the float were jealous of Miss Lake's physique and reported that she "wouldn't fit in" with their float theme.  

Another Trip. Another State.

In late August, Miss Lake, her caretaker, and her caretaker's son all headed to Colorado.  Because they could, their route took them to Colorado Springs by way of Dodge City (home of the best Mexican food restaurant in all the land).  It was hard to find very much colorful about Colorado at the state line; however, there were grasshoppers as big as Miss Lake, so that was something.

Several long hours later, from her spot on the dashboard, Miss Lake got her first glimpse of the mountains.  Actually, you could see the mountains way before this, but she just wasn't paying attention.  Or it could have been because she was facing the wrong way.  

The long weekend was spent in Green Mountain Falls, Colorado, a quaint mountain village which has seen many visits from Miss Lake's human caretakers.  

There was an interesting light display in one of the city parks.  Hundreds of light bulbs, powered by the sun, covered the park.  Not much to look at during the day, but it was spectacular once the sun went down.  

Miss Lake made an appearance at Cave of the Winds.  She didn't join along on all the mountain hikes, though.  Word on the street is that Miss Lake is basically lazy and only goes where someone will carry her golden spoiled ass.

At Garden of the Gods, Miss Lake posed for a picture.  This was right before she told a racist bigot to shut his mouth.  (True story, except that it wasn't Miss Lake who was doing the talking.  There really was a mouthy racist who was lucky Sarah didn't take his head off.  Sarah's son was glad he always travels with bond money.)

On a clear day, the view of Pikes Peak from Woodland Park, Colorado.  On a cloudy day, it's not quite so grand, but by Kansas standards, still pretty good.

Half past dawn o'clock and ready to head home.

Is this Miss Lake's 2nd or 3rd run in with The Man?  Apparently trying to get through eastern Colorado as fast as possible is frowned upon.  Miss Lake exercised her right to remain silent.

Sunday, October 1, 2017

She Was There, I Promise

In June, my son and I participated in the Finish on the 50 5k at Arrowhead Stadium.  

Before we went to the starting line, I asked my son to take our photo.  A photo in which I was holding Miss Lake.  Luke took the shot, shut off the phone and off we went to walk/run 3.4 miles.  The best part of the race is getting on the field by way of the player's tunnel and having our picture on the Jumbo-Tron.  

The worst part?  At the finish line, the bastards ran out. of. water.  How does that even happen?  I lost about 20 gallons of sweat and there was no water at the finish line.  The organizers are lucky I didn't drop dead upon hearing the news.  Had I though, Luke might have gotten a free ticket or two to a Chiefs game.  He might have thought it was all worth it.

It was only later that we realized in Luke's effort to make sure both he and I were in the frame, he cut Miss Lake out!   He promised to work on his selfie skills.

Headed Home - February 23, 2017

Every February for the last 12 years, Curtis and I go to Port Aransas, Texas, for a quasi-family reunion.  It began when Dubya was president and the purpose of gathering was to impeach him.  (The group that meets thinks we are WAY more important than we really are.)   Politically, there is always something to bitch discuss, so even without a president to impeach (Thanks, Obama!), we decided to meet every February to drink, talk politics, surround ourselves with other liberals (and for those of us from Kansas and Texas, this is a wonderful benefit), and watch a basketball game on TV.

This morning way before dawn, we headed south.  Miss Lake Mexia was along for the ride.  The trip this year was going to include a special detour.  

We were stopping at Lake Mexia.
That's right....THE Lake Mexia.  
I was hoping to find out why Miss Lake Mexia was riding again.

Miss Lake arrives in the state of her birth.  Or at least the state of her purchase.

Located in east Texas,  Mexia was the home of Anna Nicole Smith.  (If I were making this up, honestly, would I pick Anna Nicole Smith for the celebrity born there?)  

Mexia doesn't have much, but it does have a lake.  And a recreational area.

Doesn't she look happy to be home?

I'm smiling because I'm ready to get back to civilization.  My "Love Trumps Hate" bumper sticker is likely to get me killed.  The people living around this lake did not get the memo that the South lost the Civil War.

Miss Lake was sad about leaving Lake Mexia until I explained that we were on our way to Victoria, Texas, for amazing barbecue.  
*As I write this on October 1, Victoria had some major damage due to Hurricane Harvey.  My fingers are crossed that by the time we return to Port Aransas (which may be a very long time), our favorite BBQ will be open again.

This kid didn't even blink when I asked if I could take his photo with Miss Lake.  
 Guess a crazy woman carrying a statue happens more often than we think.

Miss Lake loves the beach life!  

It's true - - life is better on the beach.

Except for the rattlesnakes.  I shit you not.

We stopped in Denton on the way home.  This police car was at our hotel long enough for Miss Lake to have her photo taken with it.  

Miss Lake is a wonderful traveling companion who fits nicely in a purse or backpack.  Or on the dashboard of my car.  

Clearly this girl is going to get around.

First Official Appearance - February 1, 2017

Miss Lake has been on the staff of Kansas State University for one month and it was time for her to earn her keep.  (You would be surprised to know how much alcohol this plastic woman consumes.  She and Sarah Palin are no doubt related.)  

To ease her into the high pressure world of student legal services, she was on the job at a rental information fair in the Student Union today.  Miss Lake supervised the Off-Campus Housing Support director as he advised students on the finer points of tenants rights.

Although Miss Lake is reasonably quiet (until she gets wound up due to the aforementioned alcohol), she made it clear in her own special way that she's not crazy about the temperature in Kansas in February.   She's a real Texas girl, this one.

Saturday, January 21, 2017

Women's March in Topeka

Today, Miss Lake joined me (and 4,000 of my closest friends - - not bad for Kansas) in the Women's March at the State Capitol in Topeka.

I had the perfect shirt to wear.  I don't wear it very often as there is a definite danger of being run over by a truck when I have it on (again, I'm in Kansas).  I figured today I would be safe.

Becca and Sarah, newlyweds and new friends of Miss Lake!

Kansas State alumni and Miss Lake.

I still haven't quite mastered holding Miss Lake AND taking a picture.  Just think, but next January, I'll be really good at this!

I used my elevator speech with this guy and he not only agreed to have his picture taken with Miss Lake, he suggested he turn around so the capitol would be in the background.

 Are you wondering if the governor was around?  Yeah, he wasn't.  
If you watched the inauguration of he who will not be named and saw a goofy looking guy a couple of rows back in an ugly orange tie, THAT was our governor.  

All Rise

Miss Lake dropped by Riley County District Court and snuck up on the bench for a quick photo.  
The bailiff was out of the courtroom and didn't know that mischief was afoot.

I've been working on my 15 second elevator speech to explain why I am where I probably shouldn't be with a statue of a female body builder and a camera.  
I start with "I got an award for being funny" and go from there.  

What with my mad ninja skills, I haven't had to try it out yet.

Until Next Year, Miss Lake is a Chiefs Fan

Who could pass up an opportunity for Miss Lake to have her picture taken with the biggest Chief's fan in 6 states?  Not me, that's for sure.

My son, Luke, who is used to his mother's half baked idea of fun, says he's on board with Miss Lake's year of adventures and has promised to do what he can to stop traffic, sneak into locked buildings, approach strangers, drive the get away car, whatever it takes to get That Picture.

However, he did inquire about who would pay his bond.  
I told him I probably would, but it was dependent on whether or not we got the photo.

Having me for a mom.  A. Laugh. A. Minute.

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Miss Lake Arrives on Campus

After what seems like a very long break (only because I was in a car with my husband driving halfway across the country), I was back in the office today.  

Ahhh, the first day back in the office.  What's a better than that?  Forgetting you just had a root canal and drinking a frozen margarita?  Thinking you are texting your best friend about your dumbass sister and you are actually texting your mom?  Dressing up as a KU fan on Halloween, forgetting it's K State's homecoming, running into the Vice President for Student Affairs and trying to pretend there is not a Jayhawk tattoo on your cheek?  (And yes, it was every bit as awful as it sounds.  I told him that it was either dress as a Jayhawk fan or an attorney and I chose the one that wouldn't get me beat up on the playground.  I'm not sure he bought it, but I do still have a job.)

This is Holton Hall, the home of Student Legal Services.  I took this picture early in the Fall when the sun used to shine.

This picture I took today.  The sun is on holiday (but not in Santa Barbara....) and the ice is coming.  (Game of Thrones, anyone?)

There, you see her?  Sitting on the top left side of the sign?  Lean in, squint a little.  No?  Lean back then and go get your glasses.  She's there, I promise.

A whole year of this.  Won't it be fun?

While I'm here, I'd like to call your attention to the bushes which surround this sign and which I had to crawl into in order to get this damn picture.  I dodge traffic in Winslow, I climb in bushes in Manhattan; what won't I do for a picture of Miss Lake? 

I shared my award with my colleagues in the Office of Student Life and they were appropriately impressed.  Maybe "impressed" is overstating their reaction a bit.  Now that I think about it, I might have mistaken "what the hell is she talking about" with "impressed".  

It's easy to do.  Happens to me all the time in court.

Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Kansas is NOT Texas. Kansas is NOT Southern California.

Three thousand four hundred and seven miles.
Miss Lake was there for half of them.

Every mile driven without incident.

60 miles from home, I hit 2 deer.  Yep.  TWO deer.
Miss Lake was in the back seat longing for the warmth of Texas and the relative calmness of Ray's  custody.

The deer were small and the damage was minor.  Both animals got up and ran away, but I am sure they were looking for a deer chiropractor.  After being cleared by the Kansas Highway Patrol, I drove the rest of the way home.  The only evidence of the incident being 2 small dents in my hood and a bit of deer hair (hair? fur? fuzz?) stuck in my grill.

The silver lining?  I had a sort of rattling noise under my car that has disappeared.  

We're Driving How Far?

Good morning, Miss Lake!  Time to get in the car and head east.

And, yes.  This IS 4:21 A.M.  
What an ungodly hour.  
Unless it's at a Krispy Kreme.

First stop: California Welcome Center


Some of these photos are a bit "Where's Waldo"-like.  I promise Miss Lake is in all of them.  

Who could pass by the exit for Winslow, Arizona without stopping?  Not me, that's who.  The Eagles and "Takin' It Easy" are from the soundtrack of my early college years.

Miss Lake standin' on the head of someone standin' on the corner in Winslow, Arizona.

You now understand that I will risk life and limb (and Miss Lake herself) to get a photo.  This is in an intersection in Winslow, Arizona, and took a couple of attempts.  I was trying not to get killed by drivers who, for some reason, were not watching for someone running in and out of the intersection carrying a trophy.  
My long suffering husband was hoping I wouldn't end up as a hood ornament on a passing Chevy.  He doesn't know the PIN for the debit card.

That's marriage security.

Ocean View

 Before leaving Santa Barbara, Miss Lake checked out the view from Room 333.  Little does she know that in less than 24 hours she is headed to a place that is as far away from any body of water as anyone can be.  
 I figured I'd let her enjoy the warm sun and the beautiful view for as long as she could.  Shit is about to get real.

The Morning After

 Oh my goodness.  Is this how the entire year is going to be with Miss Lake?
We can only hope.

Later in the day, however, she did attend one of the CLE sessions and by doing attempted to dispel the rumors that she drinks too much
I'm not sure she was successful.  

And So It Begins

USLSA - Western Region 23rd Annual Legal Education Conference
Santa Barbara, California
January 3-6, 2017

So many awards, so many deserving attorneys.
Office of the Year.
Special Project of Excellence.
Outstanding people in general.

And then there's the Miss Lake Mexia Rides Again award.  Sounds impressive, doesn't it?
Yeah.  It's not.

USLSA Patriarch, Ray Schiflett, III, found a trophy of a female body builder flexing her muscles in a bargain bin at the local Trophies R Us store in central Texas.  The plate on the front read "Miss Lake Mexia Rides Again".  Even though he had absolutely no idea what that meant, he couldn't resist paying the $3 asking price and breathing life back into Miss Lake Mexia, whoever she might have been.

It seems only right at this point to get everyone on the same page about Mexia, a city 40 miles east of Waco.  It's pronounced "Mex-ee-uh".  

No, I'm kidding.  While that's how we would pronounce it in Kansas (Canz-Ass), let's go with "Muh-hay-uh", shall we?  

Lake Mexia is a fishing lake that seems to be mediocre at best and prone to flooding if the interwebs can be believed (and the interwebs CAN be believed right?  I mean, it got donald trump elected president).

Back to the award, Ray paced the floor, lost sleep, chose a ditch to die in, and decided to give this award (and I use the term loosely) to someone with a good sense of humor who would keep it for a year and then, at next year's conference, pass the torch to another funny person.  

That's it.  Nothing else required.  Only laughter.

I've can do that.  

After all the "real" awards were handed out, photos were taken and everyone (me) insisted that the winner of the Miss Lake Mexia Rides Again award be included.   

Here's my plan for Miss Lake Mexia (thanks to Jon Carlos Senor):  she and I will travel the globe and I will take her picture at various places and with random people.  I'll post here and keep you updated on our adventures.  An added benefit is that she fits nicely in my purse so I'll rarely be without her.  This is going to be quite a year!

Because it's on my mind, why do you suppose Miss Lake Mexia is riding again?  Where did she ride the first time?  Why is she a body builder?  Did she get those muscles reeling in fish from the lake?  Why was the trophy never picked up?  Did Ray pay too much for it?  Perhaps these questions and many others will be answered over the next 12 months.  Perhaps not.

But, the quest will be a hoot.