I'm taking a leave of absence from (most of) the Internet

Have not been on Rosenrot lately, or LJ for a couple of months. (Some of you might have noticed by now.) Have not done much of anything on Facebook for a while now, either. (Again, some of you might have noticed that.) Hell, I haven't even been on DeviantArt very much, and I just started checking them out so I can put up a little fan art I've done.
Why? I'm taking a leave of absence so I can do more for my offline life.

I'm still a regular fangirl--squealing over the pictures, playing the music, working on the next fan-fic piece. (Slowly.) It's just that now I'm not focused on that. I have career planning to do; there's a way for me to get help in getting into community college through a program run by my work, and while they do some career planning I want to work out more of a path for myself. Do I go for a basic program that would allow me to become an interpreter first and then a book translator (my other dream job, if I don't make it as a writer) only later on? Do I forget my love of anything publishing-related for now and go on to do something more potentially-exciting (teaching English abroad for a few years, for example) first? Do I want to dive whole-heartedly into my higher education and career stuff and then make a personal life happen, or do I want to go slower but do both more or less at the same time? What about getting remarried? Do I want to stay in the Northwest for life, or do I want to leave for a while (let's say I end up in a college in the Midwest or on the East Coast) and then come back?
I have a couple of personal things coming up on the horizon. My kid sister's graduating from high school in early June, and I'm going to drive down (though rumor has it that my name means "lousy driver" in some obscure language) to see that. I also want to visit my dad's grave while I'm in the state...again with the personal business. Once I'm back from that week or so, I'm going to focus on looking for an apartment in Seattle. (My trip itinerary is 10 days long, which can be cut somewhat if my work managers decide to be total pendejos about me wanting Memorial Day weekend off. I've already submitted the request, however.) I'm hell-bent on moving by October 1st at the very latest, though I should be able to afford it by about the end of August. I hate most of my neighbors, especially the ones who think it's perfectly okay to blare their rap music and scream at each other at one in the morning, and at least in Seatown the cops look like they want to do their jobs. I also hate being two bus rides away from anything exciting.

I will probably be online a little more frequently (say, once or twice a week) once I move; things should be a little more settled by then, at least until I actually get enrolled in community college. I should also have at least a little bit of fan art and/or fan-fic to show off, on Rosenrot and elsewhere. (Whether I also have R+ concert pics depends mainly on whether or not "our boys" bring the tour my way. Hopefully, they do, and I get to achieve my fangirl dream: being in a picture with Richard.) *squee*
Figured you guys might've been wondering about me: where I've gone, what's up, do I even do LJ anymore, and so on. I'm not being flaky on purpose--let's put it that way.

  • Current Music
    Rammstein, "B********"

recipe for "Mexican" meatballs a la SusanRenee

I made a batch of these babies yesterday, and while the meatballs came out kinda small (I had far more than 48...let's put it that way) I thought I'd pass on the recipe...my way. Note: this is a double batch, so if your crock pot is kinda on the small side feel free to cut it in half.

Ingredients: 2 lbs ground turkey, 42 saltine crackers (made into crumbs), 1 cup thawed corn, 1 cup chopped bell pepper (chopped, hell; I'd say dice 'em up for this), 1 cup finely chopped onion (ditto), 4 teaspoons chili seasoning, 3 and a half cups tomato sauce, 2 tablespoons Brown Sugar Twin (or, for non-diabetics, real brown sugar--I got this from a diabetics' cook book), and 2 teaspoons dried parsley flakes.

Directions: Chop up the peppers and onions; thaw the corn. Put crackers in a bag (Ziplock works for this) and smash until they're crumbs. (Eisbrecher's "This is Deutsch" works well for background music here--personal experience.) Get a big bowl and put in the meat, cracker crumbs, corn, peppers, onion, chili seasoning, and a half-cup of the tomato sauce. Mix it up by hand; don't be scared of getting dirty with it. You'll be making meatballs out of this stuff...mmm, Meat. Balls.
The recipe says that this makes 48 one-inch meatballs, but the cookbook is full of it on this one...at least, if you're not using a food processor. You can do what my roommate suggested and divide the mix 48 ways before rolling them up, or you can do what I did and make one 1-inch ball and use that as the model for the others. (My way makes smaller balls, but you get more.) I had fun with this part, making really big ones and calling them "Till's balls" and then making really small ones and calling them...never mind. *winks*
Once you've got your balls, the next step is to brown 'em in a skillet. The recipe calls for spraying it with olive-oil-flavored spray, but since not everyone can have or wants soy additives I used the real thing instead. In the meantime, the Brown Sugar Twin and the parsley flakes go into the other three cups of tomato sauce. I'd spray the crock pot with more olive oil and then, as they brown, put meatballs in a few at a time. Once they're all in there, coat them with the sauce, put the lid on, and cook on "low" for 3 to 4 hours.
Or so the recipe says. The one we've got cooks really fast, and they got done in about two hours. They're good over cooked quinoa pasta--or at least they were last night--but I think any fine pasta works fine to go with them.

Somehow, I don't think I'm going to be getting any invitations to appear on the Food Network anytime soon. Wonder what anyone else would say about that...?

  • Current Music
    Weezer, "Buddy Holly"

"Live Performance", part three (the funny part)

Here's the rest of it...

...and looked around, to find that he was on the touring plane with his cheek to the window. He glanced into his lap and saw the tell-tale bulge. Oh, shit. A peek over at Schneider, whose face was buried in a newspaper, only added to his irritation. How the hell did I get hard over him, of all people? I don't even swing that way in the first place.
"Hey, welcome back." Paul leaned in--too close to miss the bulge in his crotch, it turned out. "So...some dream girl, huh?"
"I don't know what you're talking about." Heat flared from his eyes, despite his best effort at holding it back.
"She must've been hot. You're harder than Chinese algebra, there."
Shut up! That had gone too far. His hand reached around and smacked the back of Paul's head.
"Ow! What'd you do that for?"
He refused to let any remorse show in his voice. "I'll tell you later, but if you ever, ever let another living soul know...we're gonna need a new guitarist."
Richard--oh, shit, another one who can't keep his mouth shut--turned around. "I think we're fine with two guitarists for the shows, but maybe we could discuss getting a guest player in..." A glare left his jaw slack. "Just a thought. By the way, what was that about Chinese algebra?"
"Nothing. Forget it."
Paul chimed in. "Yeah. It's nothing."
Nothing, my ass. Damn. Down, boy...yeah, I'm gonna have to take care of this... "Hey, I need to get up."
"Oh." Paul's eyes glowed. "You've gotta..."
"Piss. I've gotta piss. Get your mind outta the gutter." He added another glare and a sotto voce "Remember what I said?"
"Yeah." Paul scrambled out of his seat, and Flake followed him into the aisle. "Damn, you're cranky. Maybe you need more sleep."
Maybe I do...later. Who knows, maybe I'll get a woman the next time. He headed for the door at the back of the plane, but not before turning around for another peek at the drummer. He was pretty convincing as a woman in that video--I will give him that, though. He shook his head. I need to get laid again.

There, that's the end!

I'll put up the other two, probably once I figure out the HTML command thing...it's been a while. That way, I won't have to break everything up into tiny little bits.

  • Current Music
    "Vertigo", U2

"Live Performance", part two

Here's part two of the story...

The hand that had called him to the stage was in his hair, taking off his glasses (good riddance, he figured; he didn't need them for this anyway), sliding along his jaw. It roamed down, grazing his neck and pulling him head-first into lipstick and suction. He reached up, finding a five-o'-clock shadow under the makeup. The sandpaper sensation brought a question to mind: why didn't I do this ten years ago? He answered his own question by nipping at Schneider's collarbone, then diving in for the kill. The hell with it. He had other things to discover.
They ended up lying down on the stage, hands sliding under clothing. Flake looked over at the rows of empty seats, then down into Schneider's face. "There isn't anyone else here, is there?"
"No. We're alone. Zoran runs the club, but he only comes in on Tuesdays--to check up on things."
"What about the other...dancers?"
"Oh. No one's on the clock right now. They won't be until tonight." Even under the swirls of red light, the drummer's face seemed to relax. "Looks like I've got you all to myself."
"Good. I'd hate to be walked in on. So...how much extra does this cost?"
"This one's on me."
He found nothing to say in response. I've got you all to myself, however, echoed between his ears as he went back to his discoveries. There were just so many to consider--for example, he found that if he ran his tongue along certain spots in just the right way the body under him would tremble, and he focused on that for a while. His hands pushed away fabric--the better to get to the warmth underneath--until he found himself flat on his back.
"My turn." Schneider was straddling him now, reaching into his pants, and he gasped when a hand found exactly what he'd hoped it would find. He reached down to help get his briefs out of the way...

This is where it gets good, guys. I'll put up the rest of it right away; that way, you can all find out how it ends.
  • Current Music
    "Here Comes the Hot Stepper", Ini Kamoze

"Live Performance", part one

Here's the first part of that fic that ended up on Rosenrot instead of here...I probably need to put the usual introduction, so I'll go ahead and do that as well:

title: Live Performance
characters: Flake Lorenz, Christoph Schneider; also, Paul Landers and Richard Kruspe
genre: comedy
rating: PG-13, for language, non-explicit sexual situations, cross-dressing, and Flake smacking Paul in the back of the head in one part (what a tease I am...) :-)
summary: While the band's on tour, Flake and Schneider end up together on another stage...
disclaimer: This is fiction and (as far as I know) would never really happen. I neither know nor own any character in the story. I don't even own the song I quote from, which is "Kinda I Want To" by Nine Inch Nails.

The first thing that came to his mind was okay, they're doing the hot-mom show now. The second was that the figure in a blouse and skirt somehow looked...familiar. He took off his glasses, breathed on the lenses, and wiped them with a corner on his shirt. As he put them back on, his brain and mouth worked at the same time: "Schneider?"
He found himself unable to stop watching the stage. The drummer's skirt hiked up as legs wrapped around a pole, and Flake gulped. When had those legs become so fascinating?

I can't shake this feeling from my head...
He agreed with Trent Reznor's lyrics. Onstage, Schneider's hips were thrusting back and forth in a way that made Flake wish he were the pole and not the audience. He licked his lips and stared; his heart pounded, demanding release from its rib-cage prison. The dance continued, with the skirt around Schneider's waist and his legs fully exposed. They swirled around the pole as a hand reached out, index finger curled in a come-hither motion.
Flake pointed to his chest and looked up. His lips formed the answer: "Me?"
Schneider nodded, repeating the motion, and the keyboard player found himself on stage before he knew what had happened.
And I know it's not the right thing
and I know it's not the good thing
but kinda I want to...

Part two's coming up, by the way...
  • Current Music
    whatever the kids in the basketball court are playing

the saga of my missing wallet...

Last Thursday night, I lost my wallet on one of the buses I take to get home after work. I've been very busy lately, what with ordering a new driver's license and letting every necessary party know that my information could be used to rip me off. The IRS, the FTC, Social Security, my medical-insurance places (even though I still have these cards, some "genius" could still use my personal information to get free medical attention), the local sheriff's department, the bank I use, and basically everyone except my mother--and she's next--already knows about this. Hell, the more eyes I have looking for something fishy, the better.
It fucks up my direct deposit at work, something I've taken care of already--I had to close my existing bank accounts and get new ones, which meant that I had to reapply for direct deposit...and guess what. I have a check coming to me on the 12th. It'll probably be a paper one I'll have to take to the bank myself. I really don't appreciate the wise words of one of my work managers, who recommended that I wait until after I get back from my vacation (I'm off until the 16th) to take care of that little detail. *imagines smacking said manager* Besides, the other manager and the store manager agreed with me--I needed to take care of it ASAP.

I'm just in one of those bite-your-head-off moods right now, too contrary to keep putting on the brave face. So I've done everything I can...hooray. Right now I just want to go on with my other things, such as posting fan fiction here and looking for an apartment...and making sure that whoever took my wallet (provided that said person intended to rip me off) faces probation and/or jail time.
  • Current Music
    Die Puhdys with Till Lindemann, "Wut Will Nicht Sterben" (stuck in my head)

back in the saddle

Hi, guys. I know I've been away for a really long time--at least from LJ itself. And what a long and strange trip it's been...

First, updates. I'm working closer to home now; one of my former production managers got promoted to store manager at another place, and he requested that I think about transferring to his store. I accepted a little over two months ago. Good times--I get to run the book department there in my own right (no more having to work under an increasingly-negative co-worker), I don't have to spend 25 hours a week commuting to and from work, and there is no more distraction in the form of a particular drooly-hot married German-born job-training instructor. Believe me, that last one was more of a pain in the neck than I ever let on.
I also got a raise, after much agitation of store managers, so now I'm making a little *more* than minimum wage. My take-home is only about $20 more now, though, so I've still gotta nickle-and-dime everything.

Personal life is a lot more settled these days. I've passed the first anniversary of my breakup--and I'm still single. Mainly, I'm working on dropping the last 15 or so pounds (I've dropped 20+ already, earlier last year, and kept most of it off) and building a social life. I even told my mom what I've already admitted to myself: my offline social life as an adult's always been limited to my significant other and whoever he chose to associate with. This time around, I want friends of my own.
I have much clearer plans for the near future, too. In June I'm going to rent a car and drive down to California to see my kid sister graduate from high school--big step for me, as I've hardly driven at all since I got my license three years ago. There are also things in and around my home town I'd like to see and do while I'm down there. Later this summer, I plan to get my own apartment for the first time. Other things to do include a little dating and a lot of studying in community college.

You guys might be wondering how I've been doing with the R+ fanfic. I've written two newer pieces that I'll be putting up here fairly soon, along with another one I just never posted here for no particular reason. I'm also working on several ideas: a short het piece (yes, het) as a favor to one of my Rosenrot friends, a gen piece (it involves Till bench-pressing the singer from Tokio Hotel--figured someone might get a kick out of that idea), and a longer slash fic that started life as a kind of parody of chick lit. (My original working title was "Flake Lorenz's Diary" for a reason.) Fortunately, I'm going to be taking a few days off from work--along with doing some online research into low-income housing, I'll be working on at least one of these fics...looks like I won't be sitting on my ass eating bonbons after all. 
Forgot to mention that, due to the new R+ album, I've had to update my "things SusanRenee49 is NOT allowed to do in 'Harry Potter'" list a little. That's going up here too; I've gotta find my updated items first. (Example: I am not allowed to let Voldemort play "Ich Tu Dir Weh" while using the Cruciatus Curse.)  :-)

That should be about it for now. My thoughts and feelings about the new books I got on Buddhism and Taoism, one of which I just got done reading today...well, I'll save those for another post. Don't wanna bore anyone. Ditto for my rants about Men Are From Mars, Women Are From Venus and all those other manipulative "boys do this, girls do this" crap I get all the time at the store. I like to call the book I mentioned Women Are From Mars, Men Have a Penis...that's my little joke and, like I said, another post.

Signing off,

  • Current Music
    Rammstein, "Haifisch"

new Facebook page; the show must go on

1. If anyone's interested in finding me on Facebook, I'm now there. My profile info has my real name, along with my birth date (July 10, 1981), relationship status (single), and one very dorky two-year-old photo of me...I'm the one with my hands in my pockets, in the blue sweatshirt standing next to a parking lot. I've got long brown hair (in a ponytail) and glasses, and I'm also wearing blue jeans in that pic. I put up a blurb on my wall about wanting to tell the nice folks over on Rosenrot.ca and you guys ("my LJ friends list") that I'd made a page. I even joined the R+ group there, though I haven't posted anything to it yet. (Don't know how to introduce myself.)
Easiest way to find me, for anyone who doesn't have my e-mail address: I graduated from Nordhoff High School in 1999, and included that in the profile.

2. I realized that, on the whole, I've hated what my ordinary life has become...need to change that. Still have five more months until I move, though, and as Tom Petty once put it "the waiting is the hardest part". I figure things will at least feel like they're happening once February rolls around and I actually get the hell out of Auburn. Come June, I plan on taking my trip to my home town (as well as where my parents live now; my kid sister's graduating from high school), which should also be a turning point for me.
All I need to do now is get through the next five months without losing my mind. Meeting people--making friends, basically--should help with that. The drive I've had to hook up and get a boyfriend seems in large part to be really about doing what I love and having people to do it with. As for dealing with my family, I think I have ways to do that. Mom and my sister have been good to talk to; my stepdad pushed the religious angle, which really pissed me off, but I'm determined to not let even that get in the way of at least seeing what kind of a relationship I can have with him (if any).
Maybe I'm getting it together finally and doing what I'm beginning to call My Work--breaking out of the shell, basically. Going down to California to put the past behind me and visit my family is something I see as a prelude to more-exciting things like enrolling in community college and actually socializing with people.
  • Current Music
    "Supernova", Oomph!

loneliness and more (random little blurbs)

Have been meaning to post here more often, but I keep giving in to the ennui--and wondering what the hell I have to say that could run for whole paragraphs. So here are some mini-blurbs...

1. Regarding the new R+ album: wake me when it's over, the CD comes out, and I own a copy. The pics are nice; the news...a little inconsistent. I'm sure it's going to be great, or at least very good, but the flak about leakage of pics and unofficial stuff...so Pilgrim is a bunch of pricks. So they couldn't promote sliced bread, let alone a band's new album. I'm just waiting, which is all I can do. I do my part and keep up on the latest developments and generally stay out of the fray when it comes to what the mods and admin over on Rosenrot have to deal with. (BTW, Onyx Wolf, you're doin' great despite the bullshit you've had to handle lately.) Looking forward to the music, and the happy day when I can say, "Never mind the bollocks, here comes Rammstein!"

2. I am looking at men--co-workers, customers, random dudes on buses, at transit centers, and everywhere else--like I just got out of prison. I chalk it up to loneliness, the kind that comes from getting out of a long-term relationship and realizing that half of my social life is tied to a computer and the other half is tied to my job. Since I can't date co-workers (ethically), and there's no way I can afford online dating at this point, and even my own mother thinks I need to get out and do things I enjoy (but sorry, Mom; community theater costs money and time I don't yet have), I'm down to looking for a volunteer stint somewhere just to have a reason to get out of the apartment on at least one of my days off. I've also successfully used a sketch pad I got to start conversations with a couple of guys, though my drawings aren't exactly art-school quality and I never did get to see either of them again. (Yet.) For what it's worth, however, I dug up the e-mail addresses of a couple of people I knew before The Last Relationship and sent off "is this still a way to reach you?" letters.
Fears: that I'll let scary dudes into my life (again), that I'll be bored (again), that dating will get in the way of my plans to go to community college and maybe teach English overseas while I work on writing enough things to be able to submit something for publication.
Reality: I'm this close to hitting up the Jehovah's Witnesses at the transit center just to have someone to talk to. Also, the younger of the two in the pair is beginning to look cute.

3. Am really, really beginning to love Die Toten Hosen. Four songs on my computer so far, and more I'm still checking out on YouTube. OTHO, here I go again with also starting to crush out on a band's singer...*sigh* *heart* I haven't found a blond (even a non-natural one) attractive since, oh, tenth grade, but...gaah. *incoherent babbling* *feeling half my age, and not in a good way*
  • Current Music
    "The Pretender", Foo Fighters

lovin' it when plans come together

I sat down and figured out an estimate of how much it'll cost to move in Februrary, and it turns out that I've got just about all of it sitting in the bank now. As for continuing to save, I'm doing that so I can go see my family next spring/summer. (I'm thinking of making it next June, in time for my kid sister's graduation.)

Met a guy on one of my commuter buses on Sunday. We hit it off great, but the reason he had to get off at the airport was he had to be in Alaska the next morning for a temporary fishing job. If he calls or e-mails when he gets back, hey--I'll be all smiles. If he doesn't--at least I know I can attract a guy I actually want to get to know better.
Maybe I can take my time here a little. I've been meeting better and better people just in the last week--first the loser and then some guy I kinda slept with, whose number I still have (but don't really wanna call)...and now this guy. I'm not holding my breath, though. My life comes first.

I'm going to ask the store manager about my performance review. I was supposed to have one three months ago, but it seems that the company waits for people to request them. (There's also the matter of an annual raise once you've passed your first anniversary, which I'm very interested in. As I'm at the 9-month mark right now, however, I do have to wait some more.) What I'm really after, however, is a promotion--I want to be a production-department lead, and I believe there's not only the need for one but a possible opening coming up...but that's also something I'll have to ask the boss about.
  • Current Music
    Meredith Brooks, "Bitch"