Monday, June 1, 2009

She Did It Again!

That Girl - I tell ya. We went to Austin for the All-State solo & ensemble competition Saturday and once again, she nailed her solo - Perilhou's Ballade - to rave reviews from the judge, Helen Blackburn, who is a pretty big name in flutes around here. After the performance, Helen clapped and said, "Brava! Excellent job! Do you take lessons?" The Girl said yes, and named her flute teacher, a friend of Helen's through their work with Texas Flute Society. Helen said, "Ohh! THAT explains it! Flute players from Fundietonfieldvilleview just don't get THAT good!" The feedback sheet was covered in lovely gushy praise as the icing on the cake. (That she has effectively written her own scholarship check to just about any music school she chooses is the candles on top.) Of course we're not proud of her at all...

This video is naturally not of The Girl's performance, because she never lets me into those performances with or without a camera, but it's the same music. The thing is our Girl performed it equally flawlessly and entirely from memory.

Next year, she's taking on Prokofiev's Sonata for Flute and Piano in D - a piece smuggled out of Soviet Russia during the 1940's that is so hard and so famous that it's known only as "The Prokofiev" in flute circles. It's also so hard that there's no memory requirement for the competitions. Her flute teacher, who has a doctorate in flute, is excited that The Girl is taking it on. She's had the music a week and already has the first page down. Here's a clip of the greatest living flute player Sir James Galway playing it:

Rock on, flutey girl, rock on...

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Dr. Tinyoffice Will See You Now

I promised pictures of the new office some time back. In November, my business partner & I leased 200 square feet of office space (2 adjoining 10'x10' rooms). Before I show you where we are, I want to show you where we came from, which will hopefully shed a little light on why 200 fabulously quiet and drama-free square feet is better than an overcrowded, poorly renovated old Jehovah's Witness Hall with paper thin walls and not enough office space to accomodate the number of people working there. These pictures are of the lobby only. My partner & I had to conduct psychological testing in the "play therapy room" which looked like a garage sale threw up in it (and was impossible in which to test children). Oh wait, the whole place looked like that...

We managed to slide out of that practice with no drama, unlike some of our predecessors. One of the owners had a penchant for drama and accusations of those trying to leave trying to put her out of business instead of being happy that the former supervisees in question were moving on to bigger and better opportunities than giving her half of what they earned (which was all she appeared to care about anyway). My partner was able to escape because she lives nearly an hour away and her internship was over, so due to the distance the owner didn't perceive her as a threat (although they tried to convince her to stick around so they'd have someone competent in pediatric assessment on staff). I managed to escape unscathed because at the time I was also working 3 other jobs, 2 in teaching and one for the neuropsychologist I'd been working for forever, so they didn't perceive me as a threat either.

Even though during my internship the non-crazy partner at the other site had asked me to consider joining their practice, and I was flattered by his offer, my plan has always been to establish my own practice. Continuing to work there was really a conflict of interest, albeit mostly financial. It just didn't make sense to work for a paranoid and delusional person for half of state evaluation rates when I'd worked out a much more lucrative deal with the neuropsychologist, even if I did have to generate my own business. I was in sales in a former career iteration, so generating business is no big deal for me. In the end, the rent we pay is far less than what we were paying the crazy lady with the garage sale furniture, and we don't have to jockey for space. Sorry, I'm just not willing to do testing on the open-air covered back porch, unlike some of the therapists there. Is that a privacy violation, or is it just me?

So without further ado, here are pictures of our two tiny 10 foot by 10 foot rooms...our 200 square feet of professional paradise...our own space to be the boss of ourselves...

These are pardner's side of the suite (note the phrenology head print and the "lucky tennis shoes" original drawing):

My side of the suite (btw, I'm there a lot more often so it's more homey, but she'd like to use it for storage of test equipment so I'm planning to move my stuff to a slightly larger space in the next office down the hall in the next few months):

My space looks a lot warmer because although I sold fluorescent lighting enclosures for some time, I abhor fluorescent lighting and refuse to use anything but incandescent or natural lighting. Too bad there are no windows in the room.

The little cabinet in the middle folds out to make the perfect sized table for testing.

There's also a comfy sofa in my office, and a cabinet to store my most used testing materials.

Yes it's small, but it's professional and not cluttered with nonessentials. The environment is quiet and soon I'll be able to spread out about 4 feet in each direction so it won't feel cramped even when assessing the largest patient driving a motorized scooter. Life is good and I'm proud to be where we are today.

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Gotta Get Me a Singin' Dawg...

Bwaaahahahaahahaha! *gaasp!* *snort!*

I wonder if my sister needs a backup singer for her band...

Monday, May 4, 2009

Breakin' Up Is Hard To Do...Well, Not Really - Custom comment codes for MySpace, Hi5, Friendster and more

After the last class I taught for GCUO, I decided I wouldn't teach for them anymore. The experience is best summarized by a phrase The Man uses in describing why he doesn't like to eat Cornish hens: "Too much work for not enough meat." The GCUO students seemed to be functioning in the borderline intellectual range and hadn't clue one about the rules of grammar, spelling, scholarly discourse, et cetera, and were deeply offended when I had the gall to point out their errors. Such flaws would have been more acceptable if the class was a freshman level course, but I was teaching seniors who were theoretically ready to graduate. When I received the email to teach for them again, this is what I replied to the class scheduler:

Hi Faceless Corporate Drone,

I tried to access the GCUO website to decline this invitation to teach, but was unable to do so because once again the server is not functioning properly. This email serves to notify you that I will not be accepting any further contracts from GCUO. I teach 3 sections of undergraduate psychology at the local community college (2 live and 1 online). Those 3 classes combined don't require as much effort on my part as 1 GCUO course. The compensation is also better and I have fewer students, far fewer restrictions and no micromanagement regarding the way I run my classes.

I did the math for the last GCUO class of 20 students. With each student paying $1685 per course, that generated $33,700 for the university. It seems a little unfair that the hardest working person in the loop - the faculty member - received only $1,150, including the $100 bonus for having more than 18 students in the class. That's less than one student's tuition for the class, and what I make in one day in my private practice - which incidentally also requires less effort than one days' work at UOP. I didn't work myself nearly to death to earn a doctorate for the privilege of working for less than minimum wage and while being micromanaged in the process. It's no wonder the university is constantly searching for faculty. Once instructors figure out the hoax, the logical choice can only be to cut one's losses and move on.

Have a great life,
Dr. Brainiac

All the faceless drone at corporate had to say was this:

Hi Nerdwina,
Thank you for your email. I manually declined the class for you and forwarded your email to payroll to inactivate your faculty status.
Please let me know if you have any questions.
Have a great day,
Faceless Drone

Her response just affirms my decision to work for myself and serves as a reminder that I don't have to settle for anything less than what I deserve in any area of my life. I worked too hard for far too long to accept anything less than every good thing the universe has in store for me.

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Narnia - Worst Band Trip Ever

I'm just not a cold-weather person. However, I agreed to chaperone The Girl's spring band trip to Winter Park Colorado. Everyone told me how much fun I'd have skiing and when I mentioned my complete distaste for the cold unless it involves a frozen cocktail they all said, "Oh, but it's a DRY cold. You won't even feel it!" What a load of overcooked horse shit! This poor tree was standing upright and looked like it belonged on a Christmas card when we arrived. By the time we left, it had snowed so much, the poor thing looked like it belonged in a Tim Burton movie.

We aren't even going to talk about the 18-hour charter bus ride with the old lady passing the most noxious gas across the aisle from me the whole way, and the failure for the driver to remember to stop for meals. It snowed the whole time we were there, but let me mention that Winter Park is 12,060 feet above sea level. That's more than 2 miles up, folks. Guess what! There's no fucking AIR up there! The first day I couldn't walk more than 10 feet without stopping to gasp for breath. I felt like I was hungover from a 3-day bender and ready to pass out any minute. I knew I wasn't going to be able to even attempt to ski that day because I couldn't get my breath and felt cognitively impaired from the lack of oxygen. Nevertheless, I was fitted for the hundred pounds of ski accoutrements (60-pound boots, 40-pound skis and the ski poles that kept flying everywhere in part because they were astonishingly light in comparison to the other equipment and in part because I don't know how to handle them), and lugged them back to the condo - stopping to hyperventilate every 5 feet because now I was loaded down like a pack mule. We went to the ski village, but I just ate lunch and went right back to the condo so I could make some attempt at adjusting to the altitude, although I never really did all 5 days we were there - and yes, I drank water constantly and it didn't help. I can't tell you how many times I thanked myself for quitting smoking 12 years ago.

While I was vainly attempting some semblance of recovery by wheezing on the condo sofa, and watching the snow fall, which left me even more out of breath, The Girl took the ski class and attempted the first bunny slope. It took her an hour to get down and she hated every minute of it. Immediately upon reaching the bottom, she went straight to the ski rental place and returned her equipment, telling the folks there, "Thanks, but this was NOT fun. I'm more of a margaritas on the beach kind of girl." That night, she got sick - as in riding the double-decker porcelain bus sick (<--concurrent diarrhea & vomiting which requires one to sit on the toilet and vomit in the trash can). The next morning was the competition, but she was still sick, so we called her band director to let him know. He sent up Pepto, which she took and promptly shat back out. Needless to say, she wasn't able to perform at the competition that morning. We spent the day in the condo. She slept and I read a couple of novels and watched the snow come down while practicing my new hobby of asphyxiation.

The next day we both felt a little better so we rode the shuttle bus into town for some shopping and Indian food. It was interesting to notice that the other passengers on the bus who were geared up to ski did not look like they were having fun. In fact, they all looked pissed off. I kept thinking, "Isn't skiing supposed to be fun? These folks don't look like they're having fun at all."

In town, I found a place that sold a tiny bottle of "rescue oxygen" but it was $40 and we were going home the next morning so I didn't buy it when I saw it, thinking that maybe another shop had it cheaper and if they didn't, I'd just come back later. I couldn't find another store that had it, and by the time I got back to the original store, they had closed for the day. By that time I was willing to pay triple that just to get a few moments' relief.

We went back to the condo so I could return my ski equipment, which had sat unused in the condo since I dropped it off (<--read: threw it in the floor) the first day. I thanked the rental guy for the room decorations and he seemed surprised that I never made it to the slopes for all that big fun everyone else was having. Nevermind that in addition to anoxia I was also freezing my ass off the whole time, despite wearing no less than 3 layers of clothing plus a jacket and a coat at any given moment. Later in the day, we attended the awards ceremony, which was fun, even though it was still snowing. There were kids from all over the country. One of our choir girls was selected to sing the national anthem for the opening of the ceremony. Both our band and choir received superior ratings and best in class awards. The event coordinators held a big street dance for the kids and I went to dinner at a little BBQ joint while the kids danced, mingled and made new friends. I drank a DrPepper, ate about 5 pieces of okra and half a rib and started to feel nauseous. I thought I was going to hurl on the walk back to the bus but managed not to. By the time we got back to the condo half an hour later, you guessed it - it was my turn to take a spin on the double-decker porcelain bus. Let me state that I just don't get sick other than a cold once every 18-months or so. On the even rarer occasions when I throw up, usually it's a very quick, small and quiet affair. Not this gig. No, I was throwing up with a volume and profusion I didn't even see during morning sickness. All. Night. Long. I was so weak and breathless that I didn't think I was going to be able to get my luggage downstairs to the bus but somehow I made it. So, trash bag in hand, I snagged the seat closest to the toilet on the bus just in case I needed to continue with the previous night's festivities. Oddly enough, no one wanted to sit by me once I explained my malady, so I had the luxury of having 2 seats to myself for the ride home, which lasted another 20 hours. The highlight of the trip was seeing one of my favorite actors, Billy Bob Thornton, at The Big Texan Steakhouse in Amarillo on the way home. That's him in the ballcap kneeling on the front row. Although there was much discussion of mustard, please be proud of me for not saying, "Fuck me Santa" in front of the kids, because I reeeealllly wanted to.

We didn't make it back to Fundietonfieldvilleview until 4am and didn't make it home until nearly 5 after unloading the bus and driving home. I had to be at work to teach at 8am & The Girl had to be at school at 8:30 - "or else." Fuuuuck. At least we could breathe and were through gagging, shitting, barfing and gasping. It took another 3 days for my lungs to not be sore anymore. I'm just glad to be back home, well, and able to breathe again.

Sunday, March 29, 2009

It's All Happening! - Custom comment codes for MySpace, Hi5, Friendster and more

Wow. Talk about goals coming to fruition... A few weeks ago I mentioned to The Man (who is still not formally employed in case you were wondering) that my ultimate goal - as in a couple of years from now - is to make a grand a day. Working 4 days a week that translates to a figure that's nothing to sneeze at. Granted, it's a little shy of what he was making when we got together, but not by much and I could surpass that if I wanted a 5 day work week - which I don't.

Tuesday morning I called the folks at the state agency where I've been getting referrals to let them know I'm ready to start doing work for them independently. They love my work and have been asking me when I'll be solo for over a year. The worker took my updated information and said she would be in touch in a couple of weeks. Friday she called to tell me that not only do I have a provider number but she scheduled 4 regular evals and 3 neuropsychological evals within a 4-day span. Even at state rates, that translates to astonishingly close to my goal.

It looks like I might actually be able to make a living at this gig. Now, I realize that this level of activity could be anomalous, especially in the beginning, but I didn't think I'd be coming close my goal so soon after hanging my shingle for all to see. Nevertheless, I'm so excited I could just pee.

Monday, March 23, 2009

Prove Yourself Brave, Truthful and Unselfish, and Someday...

After twelve years of concerted effort, slave labor, seemingly endless waiting and more money than I want to think about, my license for the independent practice of psychology, issued by The Great State of Texas arrived in the mail today. So the training wheels are off and now I'm finally a real boy.

More to come.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Don't Tell the Italians

Boy, are the Italians going to be pissed off when they find out they're actually being ruled by the French! Well, not really but apparently a lot of people, particularly young people, think the capital of Italy is France. How do I know this? Aside from teaching psychology, I also do psychological testing - a lot of psychological testing. One of the major IQ tests I use has a section that asks questions regarding general stuff about which people should have at least some vague idea. One of the "easier" questions deals with the capital of Italy. I can't count how many people say, without hesitation, that it's France, then appear to be proud of themselves for their vast knowledge of European systems of government.

I'm not sure what's worse though - the Franco/Italian fuckups or the no less than 75% of African Americans I've tested who have absolutely no clue who Martin Luther King or Abraham Lincoln were. I just want to smack them and yell at them, "SERIOUSLY!? You've got to be shitting me! You don't who know two of the most influential figures in the modern history of your people were? You know - the one who freed you from slavery and the one who made it possible for you to be integrated into American society? Really? Pull your head out of your ass so you can see the world, dipshit! - And while you're at it, pull up your pants. You look like a dumbass."

Please be proud of me for maintaining my poker face and not smacking them upside the head and telling them what idiots they are. Maybe a more fitting punishment would be for me to call their grandmas for the administration a proper and much-needed ass-whoopin'.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

They Still Make Slush Mugs!

We had Slush Mugs when I was a kid, so when I saw they are still being made and are marketed at, I couldn't resist buying some for our lazy poolside summer afternoons. So far it seems that they work great with soft drinks - DrPepper slushie - mmmmm --and beer - beeeeeeer slushie MMMMMMM! I tried to make margaritas in one, and it appears that the non-alcoholic part has to be slushed up before adding the liquor, or the liquid won't freeze. When the liquor is added, it melts much of the slush. That's okay though, because it works really well on beer! Woot!

Sunday, March 8, 2009


Looking back to when I started this blog in late 2006, its original focus was to give me a place to vent my frustrations about the dissertation process in the last leg of graduate school. At the time, this space was called, "Maunderings from Dissertation Hell," and the posts were composed of much wailing and gnashing of teeth, reflective of one under constant torture. Just the act of sitting down to write something - anything - helped grease the wheels of the writer within me, so I often used blogging as a cognitive warm up to the more intensive writing of dissertating.

Once the dissertation was finally complete and I was PHinisheD, I began the most unusual postdoctoral fellowship in the world. Since I was no longer dissertating, but treading water in postdoc, the blog was retitled, "Prattling in Postdoc Purgatory." I didn't blog much during that time because honestly I didn't want to bore my beloved readers with more whining, so there was precious little actual prattling done. I've also been juggling anywhere from 1 to 3 additional jobs during that time, so there's been precious little actual time for prattling to actually happen.

I finally passed the final hurdle in January. It's been a little over two weeks since I sent off the last pile of money and paperwork to the Great State of Texas for the license to practice what I've trained to do for over a decade without training wheels. Once the postman brings that precious piece of paper via certified mail in a couple of weeks, I'll have visible proof that I have been "brave, truthful and unselfish," and can finally be a "real" boy.

Since I'll finally be in private practice as a neuropsychologist, and will no longer have to keep proving myself worthy, the topics I blog about will also change with that very significant change in my life. In addition to my usual stuff - bragging about The Girl, discussing our famous gatherings, sharing recipes, I'm thinking of discussing neuropsychology-specific information & cases and sharing what's working/not working as I grow my practice.

The problem is, I don't know what to rename my little slice of blogdom. Here are a couple of ideas I've been mulling over, but nothing really "snaps" for me:

Nerdwina Brainiac's Practice Effects

Confessions of a NeuroNerd

...and the trees looked like neurons...

From the Backal Lobes

What do you think, dear readers? Do you have any ideas or suggestions? I'm open...

Friday, February 27, 2009

DonateWise Works! Here's how...

This just in from my sister Kate. Gotta love her ingenuity. Who would have thought of a matchmaking site for donors and charities!? Sign up. Charitable giving feels good.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

I Heard the News Today, Oh Boy...

Well, I heard last week anyway. The letter read something like, "Dear APPLICANT, The Great State of Texas is pleased to inform you that you have received a passing score on the oral examination for independent practice in psychology." After the ordeal I've been through, I made quite the ruckus screaming and crying and swearing and dancing and swearing down the driveway from the mailbox toward the house - until I read further:

"Now, if you will kindly fill out another 36-page pile of paperwork and send us yet another ridiculous pile of money we'll be happy to get that final piece of paper you need to work independently to you in - oh, say another six weeks or so."

*sigh* Talk about bittersweet. It's a neverending fuck-with situation, isn't it? Seriously the story of my life since 1997 has been "Hurry up and wait." Fuckers.

So that's what I've been doing - tracking down signatures and getting all my proverbial shit in one sock so I can send said piles to Austin - so I can wait some more.

oh joy.

Sunday, January 18, 2009


Last Saturday I re-took the oral exam for licensure. Texas is one of only a handful of states, including Georgia, Louisiana, Oklahoma, West Virginia, New Jersey, Colorado & California, that still engages in this outdated, highly subjective final hoop to private practice. I passed the national written exam (EPPP) and the state jurisprudence (ethics) exam over four years ago at the Doctoral level within a few months of receiving my Master's degree. Then I finished my internship, and that pesky dissertation thingy to earn my PhD (the highest possible degree) and the last year I've been in postdoc. In most states that would be sufficient. Instead, I got to sit in front of the Inquisition and give answers to questions about an imaginary case off the top of my head instead of being able to consider all the aspects of the case beforehand - like I do every other day of my professional existence, during which I typically have a minimum of a week to mentally prepare for the the person who will spend time under my care. Neuropsychology a specialization that usually requires a referral. It's not 7-11. We just don't get walk-in traffic.

This time, I was able to manage my anxiety up front a lot better. Knowing what to expect going in went a long way toward not elevating that anxiety to the point where I was having panic attacks or feeling like I was going to vomit on the examiners (okay there were a few minutes at the beginning that I thought I might release the contents of my stomach onto the examination table but once we got underway, it wasn't so bad). I was able to conceptualize the case and articulate my considerations in a cogent manner and nailed the diagnosis (multiple sclerosis) right off the bat even though I'd been studying TBI (traumatic brain injury) because it comprises well over half of all neuropsychological issues. Then they started asking me about psychotherapy, which I don't do and I told them I would refer the patient and her boyfriend to someone else if they wanted couples' counseling. Still they insisted that I assume I had agreed to see them - together - for counseling - which I don't do. Ever. Psychoeducation...maybe a little crisis management with an appropriate referral, yes - but ongoing psychotherapy? Fuggedaboutit. Ain't happenin', pal. So I did the best I could to talk about an area that does not lie within my area of expertise. yippee.

I was able to tell them what I've done to enhance my professional skills without any trouble. In addition to telling them about keeping up with my continuing education as required, I talked about all the major assessment standardizations I worked on (WAIS-IV, WMS-IV, NEPSY-2, WNV, et cetera - my name's even in the manuals), talked about the continuing education module I wrote for NAPPP on cognitive care of the elderly, and about the presentation I did at our state psych association's convention on cognition and affect in the elderly. The older of the two nodded his head and got a look of "aha" recognition on his face. I think "Aha" guy was there - and I did seriously kick ass on that talk.

So I have to say that, also unlike last time, the two examiners were genuinely nice, friendly guys. There wasn't a Blackberry in sight. Nobody checked the two-way mirror for stray hairs or boogers and they appeared to be interested in what I had to say. When I got stuck, they tried to guide without giving the answer away. There were even several times when they said, "Good." I appreciated the positive feedback. Once when my answer was very succinct but to the point, they were looking at me kind of weird so I asked if they wanted further elaboration, "Aha" guy said, "No. Actually, that was exactly what we were looking for." I could see his score sheet and noticed several 8-point scores, so all that was good. Granted, there were some weak answers in there too, but they can't all be winners, and I just need 64 points to pass. After being escorted back to the holding room, I was dismissed within a few minutes, meaning that once again, I either failed miserably or I passed. I'll know in another 3 weeks or so when I get my notification letter.

It's that wait time that's killing me. I have a constant nagging in the pit of my stomach and every time I think of opening my results letter on the day that it arrives in the mail, I feel my blood pressure go up along with a wave of nausea that I haven't experienced since the early days of my pregnancy with The Girl. I'm having nightmares, waking up sweaty and in a panic, and am on the verge of tears at any given moment. These folks have the key to my professional future and all these years later I'm still whining and scratching at the door like a dog wanting to come in from the cold and be fed.

I've said repeatedly that Psychology is a field that eats its young. Had I known going in how treacherous the path would be, I'd have become a physician and would already have my training wheels off. The licensing process in psychology seems to be more about keeping new practitioners in a one-down position for as long as possible than anything else, and I wonder if they're really concerned with ensuring that there are enough practitioners available to serve our communities, especially in a state that is as grossly underserved as Texas. I've been formally studying psychology with the intent of becoming a psychologist since returning to college in the spring of 1997 and I cranked out 4 degrees in the next ten years. My doctoral program began in the fall of 2000. My training with actual patients began a year later. I graduated with 96 credits more than I needed for the PhD, including a concentration in neuropsychology and a 3.76 gpa to boot. That said, how much is enough?

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

So Long Suck Ass Year

2008 Sucked great big fat green donkey dicks. So much went wrong (hence the lack of blogging - I didn't want to bore you with the whining), yet somehow we managed to keep our home and family together. I'm so happy it's over and am looking forward to a brighter 2009. I'll re-take the oral licensing exam Saturday in Austin. Hopefully by Valentine's Day I'll be able to remove my training wheels, fly solo, and not worry about having to work under someone else's license - particularly those someones who forget to pay me for months on end.

Don't get me wrong. 2008 wasn't all bad. There are a number of things for which I am grateful. We have been blessed with good health and it's pretty clear by looking at us that we aren't missing any meals. I can finally tell the Grandtwins apart by looking at them. The Girl kicked ass as drum major, made All-Area band again and will try out Saturday to get into the All-State gig (yes the same day I do my orals - just 1 hour south of home instead of 3). The Man has decided that since he can't get a job anywhere he and our son in law (super-awesome guy, BTW) are going to start their own business repairing Ford vehicles in our barn. I have my own office in the next town over and have already seen 2 patients there in the 2 months since we took possession. My business partner is about to finish her PhD but already has her LSSP so we'll be able to do whatever we want pretty soon.

Things are happening and I can see wonderful opportunities on the horizon. This time next year I'll be in a whole different place financially and emotionally and maybe by then our business will be doing so well that we can afford at least a part-time clerical person.

Remind me to post pictures of the new place...

Friday, January 2, 2009

I May Be In Trouble...

The Man & I aren't much for New Years' resolutions. We just try to live the best way we can each day and move on without guilt if we don't live up to our own standards. So far that approach has worked for us for a long time. Well, that is until yesterday.

We hold dear the superstition that says whatever you are doing New Year's Day is what you'll find yourself doing all year long, so among other luxuries and indulgences of the day, we make it a point to start the new year off with a "bang," so to speak. Now we're not one of those couples who reserve nookie for birthdays, anniversaries and high holidays. No, any old time is fine. I don't make him beg for sex, don't use it as a weapon, and we are still as active as we were 14 years ago when we decided we liked each other well enough to spend time together naked. Actually we're more active now because we didn't live together until 3 years later, to the tune of anywhere from 3-7 consistently mutually satisfactory copulations a week after living under the same roof for over a decade. Nothing to sneeze at by any standards.

So yesterday right after our annual tradition of starting the new year off right, he says, something like, "My resolution is more sex this year." Seriously? More? For his age bracket he already gets tenfold more than any of his friends and cronies, and for people together and married as long as we have been we're ahead of the curve. Honestly, I'm not sure where we'll fit it in.

Don't get me wrong: I'm not complaining. I just might need to call in reinforcements. What's your sister's number?