by apleau

The Elephant in the Room: Here’s Where I Unleash My Music

October 20, 2013 in Music by apleau

Note: I’m putting the music on top so you don’t have to read and be like, “just get on with it already!” But if you want some info and background, please read below the widget. BTW, the widget started to look chopped off in my browser – if you only see one song, scroll and the second one is there too. I have no idea why it’s doing that…Also? HELP! GAHH! I’m trying to figure out what I want to do in terms of offering these to download. I would like to start out simply offering to sell these as single downloads for a cheap price – just something to help me offset fees, save up for better gear, etc. I feel really presumptuous asking people to pay, but…I should, right? Should I? I’m new at this and I have no freaking clue what I should be doing. I’m researching things like CDBaby and ReverbNation’s services, and I’m not sure they fit what I’m looking for at this point. So…if any of you have experience with these services and are willing to offer advice, feel free to leave me a comment below or email me (submissions@themenacingkitten.com) Thanks! Email newsletters for
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by apleau

Sorry Everyone, I Suck

September 29, 2013 in Announcements by apleau

Hi everyone, It’s been too long since I posted, so consider this an update of sorts. Since my last post, I’ve probably written 5 posts I didn’t feel were good enough to publish, so I’m just going to wing this and get something out to you. So, a few of you know that I took part in the world’s longest layoff, which began well over a year ago when I suspected my position would be nixed. The end of last month was my final month at my former company, which was after receiving several extensions. My original end-date was supposed to be December 2012, so it’s been a long road. I can’t really complain; it’s the nature of the business – the bigger company took over our little company, saw redundancy and eliminated all of us. I worked hard up to the end and got a decent severance, so…I guess that’s fine. Here are 5 random things I’ve observed about the process of being laid off over a period of a year: 1. Brain feels mushy. Not having a career goal for a year is not good for anyone who is goal-oriented. 2. It really sucks laying people off who
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Menacing Kitten Services You Part II: The Everyone is Tacky Wedding Edition

June 20, 2013 in Advice by apleau

Hello, fair felines, to my second edition of The Menacing Kitten Services You. Through the thick storm clouds of writer’s block and moving stress, a beacon of inspiration has cracked through thanks to this lovely article appearing on Jezebel which involves the tackiest people ever to both give and receive a gift. To summarize if you aren’t up for reading the link: a former boss was invited to a wedding and gave the blushing brides a basket of grocery store items. Well, to be specific: “As a gift, my Girlfriend and I gave [the couple] a wicker box with a hinged lid, filled with food items, most of them PC Black Label, including: tri-color pasta, salsas, Balsamic vinegar and Olive, Gourmet croutons, Panko Breading, Pesto, some baking ingredients, Biscuits from Godiva and a few ‘Fun’ items like Marshmallow Fluff, Sour Patch Kids and Butterscotch sauce.” Bride #1 requested a receipt from the gift-giver, explaining she was gluten-intolerant. The former boss didn’t have a receipt to give, so Bride #2 told him that a basket of fluff and sourpatch kids isn’t a good gift for a $100-a-plate wedding. Well, to be specific: “Hey it’s [Bride 1's] wife Laura. I want to
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by apleau

Arrested Development 2013: 3 Things I Loved, 3 Things I Didn’t

May 29, 2013 in Entertainment Stuff by apleau

WARNING: Minor spoilers in the form of spoiling a couple of punchlines The most hyped television event of the year didn’t occur on a network or cable station. Netflix, a company that appeared to be going down faster than the Hindenburg two years ago, resurrected themselves through the revival of Arrested Development.  Their new-found approach to viewing television through on-demand original programming is revolutionary and somewhat exciting to watch unfold. While they’ve had original shows prior to Arrested Development such as the popular House of Cards, you can’t help but feel this was the Big Event to show off the New Netflix to the world and test the waters for this uncharted territory in programming. Of course, this uncharted territory is only revolutionary if the show is worth the purchase of a subscription. So, was it worth it? In my opinion, yes. Due to the scheduling conflicts of cast members, writing around said scheduling conflicts, dealing with a different model of television-viewing, and working with what I’m assuming was a much smaller budget, the long-awaited season of Arrested Development was sure to be a different experience from its network television days. To be certain, the show wasn’t free of problems,
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London Calling: The Religion of Nationalism

May 22, 2013 in Travel by apleau

For the past week and a half, I’ve been soaking up the sights in London. This is only my second trip overseas, and once again I find myself longing to do this more often. London is an amazing city teeming with excitement, diversity and history (and pubs). As someone who loves art history, it has been a feast for the eyes. I particularly enjoyed exploring both St. Paul’s Cathedral and Westminster Abbey – these two houses of worship are very different from one another, but have a common thread which runs between them. As I walked through them, I found myself thinking about politics and religion in the U.S., and how the concept behind the Anglican Church influences us today. My first stop was at Westminster Abbey. While it was built over multiple eras and has a variety of stylings to show for it, the Gothic signatures are the most dominant – flying buttresses, an enormous rose window, and my favorite – stunning, stretch-to-the-sky rib vaults. The nave is particularly breath-taking; I kept looking upward as I walked along it. The abbey is beautiful and at times seems to defy gravity. Unlike the churches in America or the cathedrals I’ve
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The Reach Out Project

May 5, 2013 in Virgin to Life by apleau

Death does strange things to a person. My father passed away right before the 4th of July in 2009. We were never close, but we didn’t have a strained relationship either. Years prior, I realized what our relationship was, and I was fine with that. Yet his death changed me. It came at a time when I was growing apathetic to my faith. It also came at a time when all of the walls I put up around me over the years left me with few people in my life. I had no problem moving on and not keeping in touch; it was easy. After he died, I went through what Chris and I jokingly called “The Existential Crisis.” It was the first time in my life I really confronted the idea that when we die, That’s It. Prior to my father’s death, the thought would briefly enter my mind in the darkest part of night and I’d quickly push it out. Ain’t nobody got time for that shit. After he died, the idea consumed every “quiet” moment of my life. I’d lie in bed at night and look outside the window, nearly panicking at the prospect of ceasing to
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Breast Cancer: The Divide Between Awareness and Progress

April 29, 2013 in Op-Ed by apleau

This past Sunday, New York Times Magazine had an insightful cover story entitled “Our Feel-Good War on Breast Cancer” by Peggy Orenstein. The title jumped out at me for very personal reasons: my best friend is an Inflammatory Breast Cancer (IBC) survivor. When she was first diagnosed in 2009 (at the age of 34), I saw the pink ribbon as a symbol of hope and solidarity. Times have changed a bit. From 2009 to the present, my friend had chemo, a double masectomy, some lymph nodes removed, radiation, reconstructive surgery where they used muscles from her back to create breasts, a part of her lung removed when her cancer metastasized, and then a hysterectomy because they found estrogen in the tumor in her lung and it confirmed to the doctors that she can’t have estrogen in her body if she wants to have any shot of keeping the cancer away. During all of this, Races for the Cure came and went, a local TV station threw annual telethons where they gave out pink canvas bags emblazoned with their station’s pinked-up logo to donors (costing $6 for shipping, by the way), and pink-infused football games trampled on in all their pink-cleated
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Haters Gonna Hate: East Bay Edition

April 22, 2013 in General Humor by apleau

When considering a move to the Bay, it quickly becomes obvious that people are very territorial and judgy with their city choices in the area. As we were doing research on where we wanted to live, Google searches kept on bringing us back to one particular website, where the two most common questions appear to be: “is x safe?” and “what’s it like living in y?” After perusing the forums on that web site for the past six months, I have compiled a summary of the every “pro” and “con” argument you will ever see for a number of cities in the East Bay:* Walnut Creek: PRO: “Great Schools! Safe! Near Mount Diabolo!” CON: “All white and snobby! It is the epitome of Blaffluence. What is Blaffluence, you ask? It’s when you have a bunch of rich people who only want to eat and shop at homogenous, overpriced chains where the staff only wears black – it’s like they built a society around The Keg. Also? It’s super hot. For two days in the summer, it get over 85 degrees…so yeah, it’s basically a smoldering hell that shits cash and Neiman Marcus cookies.” Oakland: PRO: “It’s like San Francisco, but
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The Other 90%

April 14, 2013 in Advice by apleau

So, I am now officially moved to the Bay Area – yay!  I am still temporarily tied to my job in Arizona, so there is only so much I can say about that experience for the time being, however I feel like things are finally getting better. It’s been a rough 6 months with new experiences I would be happy to never encounter again. I’m recovering, and part of that recovery is dusting off the Kitten. That does not quite sound right. Anyhooz, for today, I want to talk about assholes. I recently witnessed an exchange between two strangers where it was clear one of them made an honest mistake and apologized profusely for it, whereas the other person chose to be an asshole.  It got me thinking: what qualities make up an asshole, and what percentage of the world is made up of them, really? I conducted a highly scientific study where I hypothesized that the world is probably 20-30% Asshole. Recalling my experience as a waitress, I decided to round that down to 20% – it just seems there should be more because assholes take up a lot more time, space and energy than your average human. Then
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Menacing Kitten Headquarters Melts Down, Cries Glowing Chernobyl Tears

February 18, 2013 in General Humor by apleau

As you know, I am moving. What you may not know is my shit is moving out six weeks before I do, nothing is working the way it’s supposed to, nothing is happening on time, everything sucks and hatehatehatemeltdowncry. Allow me to back this up a little. So, we put a bid on a beautiful home. Here’s a picture of it: The walls, ceiling and crown molding are all plaster and I love it. Here is a picture of the crown molding: We were supposed to close on said house last Friday. Our mortgage is going through a large banking outfit we will simply call Bells Cargo. We’ve used Bells in the past and had zero problems with them; since our last dealing with them, they instituted a corporate policy of spiking the water cooler with Ambien.  Our initial documents were way, way off: misspellings, incorrect zip codes, years of employment that only make sense if you have been a companion on the TARDIS, and financial numbers that didn’t add up. After a few iterations of documents, a checklist of things to correct and finally a “fuck it, I’ll just scratch it out” resignation, we signed off on a bunch
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