Friday, May 30, 2008

Rainy days and Mondays Always Get Me Down...

It is neither rainy, or Monday, but I like that song. But when I do have down days I turn to things like this. Try it, it will work.
When I wander across something that makes me smile on this vast ocean we call the Internet, I tend to save it to my computer. Then, whenever I feel like I need a smile, I open my folder of random pictures and I will be laughing within minutes. And I am all about laughing. That puppy cracks me up. I tried to get Jaco to do this. He bit my hand and walked off in a huff. What a diva.

I have a thing for penguins. Just look at the little dears!
Are they holding flippers? I think they are! And did they make that dirty snow trail? I guess I just assumed that penguin feet were clean? Did you know penguins mate for life? Well, they do. Therefore...Matt is my penguin. I like to tell him that on a regular basis. At first he just looked at me funny. He is getting used to it though. I think he secretly likes it. But romantic are these little birds? And have you seen the movie Happy Feet? If a tap-dancing penguin doesn't make your skirt fly up I don't know how to help you.

Then there is this.

I love it. The "superhero" never fails to make me smile. I mean, look at the little stick legs. Too cute I tell ya!

I like this seal too.

His eyes are HUGE!

But this one...

This one I keep for days when I am really down.

This one can change the outlook of my entire day.

This one...I love.

Hahahaha I can't get over it. I just can't. It's just too much.

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Birth Order

I remember hearing that birth order has something to do personality development for the first time from my mother when I was about 10. She had read an article about it and based on her children, it was pretty close.

A few days after she told us about this Emily (oldest), Everett (youngest) and I(middle) were playing in the living room. True to personality Emily was making all the rules, I was going along with said rules, and Everett was whining.

"Everett" My mom said, "Your birth order is showing."

He immediately checked his zipper.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

It's just not fair

It is impossible. I can't do it. I am incapable of getting anything done when my dog is doing things like this.

First of all, what is with the eyebrows? I didn't know dogs could have expressive eyebrows.

Secondly, the one floppy ear on top of his head is enough to make me stare for hours.

You can almost hear him asking why you aren't playing with him, can't you?

How am I supposed to do anything with this dog? It's just not fair I tell ya!

I need to formulate some sort of strategy here. 'Cause I can't go on this way.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Humiliation, circa 1986

I think my parents wanted a boy. Why else would I have been given this bowl cut? Or dressed in those blue overalls?

Or holding a baseball? It's hard to see, but trust me, it's there.

I mean, just look at my sister, beautiful long blonde hair, adorable pink outfit, angelic smile.

Then look at me, bowl cut, blue overalls, baseball, sideways smile, it's a shame really.

The only slightly redeeming quality is that my shirt does have a faint floral pattern, but seriously, if you saw this picture would you think it is a boy and a girl, or two little girls?

Be honest!

*Disclaimer - my parents gave me the bowl cut because I was a holy terror when it came to brushing my hair. Standing on the front porch screaming while my poor mother tried to brush my hair is actually one of my earliest memories. The overalls on the other hand, have no excuse.

Friday, May 23, 2008

Have a nice weekend!

Have a fun and safe long weekend y'all!

Oh, I don't really say y'all on a regular basis, nor am I southern. I just felt like it fit. It is also one of the first words I learned in sign language.

Okay, anyway...have a nice weekend!

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Walk like an Egyptian

Right before I started the 6th grade, we moved from the farm I had grown up on to a new house in a new school district. I was (and still am) pretty shy, so it was tough for me to make friends right off the bat.

Eventually I started to find my niche, I even joined the 5th and 6th grade choir. For our spring concert I was chosen, along with about 10 other girls, to perform a dance routine while the rest of the choir sang "Walk like an Egyptian." We practiced for weeks, and we even designed our own set.

For some reason in our warped little 12 year-old minds, we felt that the best backdrop for the song would be a life-sized dinosaur.

You know, cause there were a whole lot of dinosaurs in ancient Egypt. What, you didn't know that? Yeah, it's one of the best kept secrets of history. So anyway, we cut it our of brown paper, stuffed it with crumpled newspaper, and painted it to look like an Egyptian dinosaur...whatever that might look like.

The night of the big concert arrived, I had butterflies like you wouldn't believe. Everything was going fine, and we were just about to perform our final(and greatest) number. As the music teacher introduced the song, we stood nervously backstage. Suddenly I noticed the dinosaur starting to fall. The ropes holding it up weren't attached properly, or it could be the fact that it was made of paper. Whatever the reason it wasn't holding.

I watched in horror as it fell to the stage. The curtains were still closed, and I knew that we would not be able to do our dance if a 15 foot paper dinosaur was dominating the stage. I ran out and tried to drag it off the stage.

That sucker was heavy! I looked to the other girls for never came.

The curtains opened and there I was, a skinny 12 year-old in the spotlight, tugging frantically at a giant paper dinosaur. I looked up with my eyes wide. The crowd laughed, the music teacher laughed, the choir laughed. Oh, the shame.

I remember nothing from that point.

I chalk it up to Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Ahh memories

This is one of my favorite pictures. It got a tad stretched and now we look thick and beefy(I mean...check out my arms! whoa), I still like it though. It is my older sister and I.

The reason I like it is for what you can't see. You cant see that we are sitting on top of a round hay bale. You can't see that we giggled like we were 4 years old when we were trying to climb said hay bale. In short, this picture revives a memory, and that memory makes me smile.

Isn't it funny how memories can change your mood? For instance, I heard a story once that there was a woman who had survived the sinking of the Titanic. Some years later she was dining with a friend when she suddenly relived the fear of that night, she started to shake and cry. She realized later that it was because the restaurant was playing one of the songs that had been played while the ship went down. Brains are weird.

Here is another picture that changes my mood. This one is of...some little farm second grade. She had licked her lips until the were so chapped that her bottom lip looked like something reminiscent of Bubba from Forrest Gump.

I can almost hear her talking about "Srimpin."

*Oh, and on a side note, the photographer told me, I mean told that farm kid, that she looked like a "fruit basket." Wow, thanks guy, that's nice.*

And another thing...why do my bangs start halfway back my scalp? Half of my hair was involved in the making of those bangs.

My brother keeps this picture in his wallet, because when he is having a bad day he likes to look at it. And laugh. Hysterically.

On my birthday he sent me a text message with a picture of this picture, just in case I was letting my special day go to my head. That'll bring you down real quick. Thanks Ev.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008


My sister has lovingly dubbed my dear dog Jockstrap. And, to my horror, it has stuck. I have tried to change it back to the original name of Jaco, but even I slip and call him other names now.

Jockstrap, Jocolate, Jerko, Barack O'Jaco, you see how it builds?

Poor little fella is going to have a serious identity problem.
He is doing well other than that though...still loves to jump. I risked my face to get this picture, but it was worth it!
He isn't having much luck with the ladies, though. Here he is trying to give Noel a kiss. Noel does not seem to want a kiss, but he is persistent. Poor little guy. Someday Jaco. Someday.

Look at that smile! I challenge you to spend five minutes with my dog and not feel a little bit better about the state of the world.

Unless of course, he demolishes your favorite shoes in those five minutes. That is when the aforementioned "Jerko" name came into the picture.

Monday, May 19, 2008

Camp Pamadeva

Every summer my older sister and I spent one week at Camp Pamadeva. Weird name huh? I'll break it down for you. Pennsylvania, Maryland, Delaware, Virginia. Creative huh?

It is no longer a camp, I am not actually sure what it is anymore, but it haunts my dreams.

I remember just bits and pieces of it. The scary meatloaf. The daily line-up to see if our shorts were long enough. The six inches of sand in the bottom of the swimming pool(?). Bible drills -- which I bombed fantastically. Falling asleep during chapel, once I even fell off the bench...I tried to play it off as tying my shoe, but I have never been good at acting and I was totally busted. I had to sit out of the soccer game.

The bright spot though, and this I remember in vivid detail, was the zip-line.

We would climb up a ladder to the platform, grip the handles and for a full 20 seconds we could fly. We would drop gracefully into a pile of spongy foam mattresses, then run to get in line to do it again.

That all ended the year one silly boy broke both his legs doing it. Something about a liability problem...hmm what is the harm in letting 150 kids have a free for all on a zip-line??

I see nothing wrong with that.

It was fun though.

But anyway. Boys and girls were not allowed and interaction at Camp Pamadeva. This rule was enforced to the point that one time we were on our way to the pool, when some boys ran by. Our counselors made us hide behind trees so they wouldn't see us in our bathing suits.

Better safe than sorry...I guess. Although I think that the fear of boys was instilled in me at a young age, because I avoided them like the plague until my first year of college.

Well, it didn't help that I had my first traumatic boy experience in 2nd grade. I was standing at the front of the classroom during indoor recess when Stephen, a boy I thought was my friend, yelled out "Hey Rebekah, you're pretty..."

I blushed, he continued.

"Pretty Ugly!"

The horror.

Friday, May 16, 2008

Playing the Blues

Last night my second youngest sister, Smashley, brought her new boyfriend, Brett, over for his first family dinner. Due to circumstances, both my older sister and my youngest sister couldn't make it, but my brother and I both did.

We have known this guy for years, so it was only slightly strained, as all first dinners with the new boyfriend tend to be. My mom politely asked questions and honestly, after about 15 minutes, everyone was pretty comfortable.

Brett do I put this...every mothers dream? He is polite, pretty much a genius, an engineer, oh and in three days he is going to go do volunteer work in Africa. All I'm saying is that if boyfriend/girlfriends were chosen based on their resumes, Brett would be a shoe-in.

Thankfully they aren't, because I would have definitely not made the first screening. I would, without a doubt, have been doomed to life as the crazy single lady with 32 cats.

But let's get back on back on track, shall we? Somehow the subject of playing guitar came up, and my mom asked Brett if he plays the guitar. He does.

And the cello.

And the piano.

And the drums.

"Is that all?" My mom asked. I just started to laugh. "What Mom? That's not enough to compete with the musical prodigies your children turned out to be?" I asked her.

She said laughed and said "no, all five of you were failures!". Its true. We even went through a brief checklist of the lessons to which she had to cart us back and forth.

There was Emily and the piano, Ashley with the clarinet and the violin, Bethany with the violin and french horn, Everett with the trumpet and the bass guitar, and then there was me.

Me vs. the alto saxophone.

My nemesis. I despised practicing. I just wanted to pick it up and play. I knew it was in me somewhere. I knew that if I could just tap into my inner self, my deeply emotional inner self(what?), the music would flow out of me.

But after about two months of lessons, I refused to practice. I would go to lessons, lie and say "Oh yes Mr. Sipe, I practice for 30 minutes every single day."

He must have believed me, because one day he took my mom aside to ask her some questions, about why I was struggling to master the simplest things even though I practiced so much. Eventually he came to the root of his question.

"Does Rebekah have a learning disability that I should know about?"

And that, my friends, was the end of my musical career. If you have been reading these inane little rambling of mine, you may remember this one, where I confessed my secret fear. Mr. Sipe pushed me one step closer to believing it might be true.

Needles to say, I'm pretty sure Brett wasn't feeling too nervous anymore.

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Working Retail

Who hasn't worked a few cruddy retail jobs in their younger years? I honestly think it is an integral part of life development. And for that reason when/if I have children, I am going to cart them off to work in a department store.

At the age of two.

Because I hear diapers and pacifiers and blankets all cost money, and I don't want to spend money on rug rats.

*Actually I do, just not yet*

I worked retail for several different clothing stores, and at the last one I worked for I was an assistant manager. Please understand that I don't tell you this in the hopes that you would be impressed..I know you aren't. It's okay, neither am I. I tell you this so that you will understand why I was baffled by the situation I am about to describe. I was supposed to be in charge that day. I was the only supervisor all day long.

It was a Sunday, and therefore a pretty slow day at the store. I was over on one side of the store helping a woman pick out some shirts. She was a pretty woman, probably in her thirties, petite with brown hair.

The other girl that was on that day was Lacey. I loved Lacey. One of the funniest people I have met, and she never tried it. For example, one time I ran to the bathroom and told Lacey to "hold down the fort." When I got back she looked at me "What is a fort? I didn't know what you wanted me to hold."

Oh. Dear. Lord.

So anyway, back to that fateful Sunday. Lacey came over to my customer and said "Ummm, Ma'am, that man at the counter would like your phone number."

The woman just looked at me. "I don't want to give it to him" she said.

Okay, not that bad.

She grabbed my arm "He is coming over here, I don't want to talk to him, I'm scared."

Well lady, I'm scared too! I stood in front of her like I was going to be able to do a darned thing. He tried to reach around me to grab her but I pushed his hand away.

"I'm sorry sir, she isn't interested, and you need to move away before I call security." It was all I could manage to get that much out.

"Oh, come on" he said, "I'm really not that bad." He tried to reach over my shoulder again. Did I mention he was at least 5 or 6 inches taller than me? Well, he was.

Even Lacey knew this wasn't a good thing. He tried to reach past me again.

Then he started to laugh.

Then she(my customer) started to laugh.

She walked around me and kissed the man, they both turned to me and said "Oh it's okay, we are actually together. It was a joke...haha like candid camera."

Excuse me? A joke? What?

Lacey looked at me, I looked at them, they giggled and walked out of the store.

A joke? Dude better watch out, I could have seriously injured him!

I know tae-bo dammit!

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Fable Confusion

Last night I went to my nephews choral recital thinger. That is the technical term I believe. To be honest, I was almost dreading it. I love the kid to death, but it just didn't appeal to me.

But being that good aunt that I am(Matthew, stop laughing, I can hear you!), I went, and I took my camera.

As soon as I saw the program I knew this would be different than most children's concerts I have attended.

Bebop with Aesop?!

Branson turned out to be a member of the Greek choir, hence the "toga". Oh he is he one with the bright red hair. If I ever have children I think I will dye their hair this color, makes them so easy to spot!

They performed a few fables, here is one with a group of frogs! They didn't look before they leapt and they all fell in a well and died. Hey life is harsh, apparently the school felt there was so need to cushion it for 1st, 2nd, and 3rd graders.
Do you see the little guy in the background? The one with the antennas? The one with the arrow over his head? Subtle I know. He is an ant, and his performance really spoke to me. Well maybe not, but I thought he was darn cute anyway.

They also had some dance moves. Look at Branson gettin' his groove on!

Oh look! It's Aesop himself! This is the part where he is telling us that some of the fables have been modified. Good thing he warned us, because the next one involved a milkmaid that laid an egg. I'm still trying to work out the moral of that story.

Next year they are putting on part two!

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Another Walk Down Memory Lane

But this time it is Matt's childhood we're walkin' through.

He took me on a drive through his hometown a couple of weekends ago. It was cute seeing where he played baseball, his high school, his old house, he even pointed out where his dog got hit by a car...not so cute. We ate at the little Italian place he used to go to, which was surprisingly delicious. Even he seemed impressed with the food, and he had obviously been there before.

Then we hit up the park where he and his brothers played. He tried to get me to traipse through the woods to his old friends Ryan's mom's house.

Not going to happen.

(And for the life of me, I cannot figure out the punctuation there..Ryans mom's? Ryans' moms'? Stupid apostrophes!)

How about that for an awkward introduction. Umm hi, my name is Bekah, I am engaged to a friend of your son's from years ago, and now I'm in your backyard.

We had another situation similar to that at his friends wedding. We were going through the receiving line, Matt suddenly skips over the bride to hug the groom, and I left face to face with a beautiful girl in a stunning dress that I have never seen before in my life...not only that but she had never met Matt either. Umm hi Cindy, you look pretty. I am Matt's fiance, I think he knows your husband from school.

Yeah...smooth. Once again me and my people skills.

So anyway.

At the park. We played. We like to play, and are both surprisingly okay with goofing off in public. So we did this

Which wasn't so embarrassing.

But that progressed to thisWhich I found hilarious. His little car kept flopping back onto the ground behind him. He had to work pretty hard to get it to bounce. No wonder little kids are so fit!

I had to try as well, but the frog I am riding didn't really bounce at all.

Matt tells me I look a little like Stevie Wonder in the picture.

And then...

..the highlight of our trip...

...and it took a whole lot of me convincing Matt no one would ever see this...

...uh, oops... little wood sprite...

I love that he laughs with me.

Oh, and sorry honey! But really, you knew this would happen.

Monday, May 12, 2008

It's all coming back, all coming back to me now...

That was my brother's favorite song when we were little. Well, it made him cry and he would listen to it over and over. Do you know it? Here is a clue: Celine Dion.


After I wrote that post about the silkworm a few days ago, more and more memories from that trip are coming back to me.

Before I tell you this, I should tell you something else. I am by no means a conversationalist. When I get put on the spot I freeze. Classic deer-in-the-headlights syndrome. If the other person can carry on a conversation (read: if the other person is normal, unlike myself) I can talk to them just fine.

Keep that in mind.

In Thailand, we were going into schools and teaching English lessons. Another thing to keep in mind, I get stage fright like no one's business. I could never, ever, ever be a real teacher. Standing in front of 25+ small people does not appeal to me. I would probably pass out daily.

I digress. Where was I?

Oh yes, Thailand, English, little people. Got it.

So we were teaching English. We partnered up with one other person from our group, and a small group of about 10 Thai kids. These kids were supposed to be in their third year of English lessons. The idea is that they would ask us questions about our culture in English, and we would ask them about theirs.

My group, collectively, knew one word.


It sounded like Noo-duh, and it took me a few odd hand motions and several repetitions to understand the word was noodle.

Noodle does not get you very far in a 30 minute English conversation. Not far at all! I mean really, it went something like this...

Noodle? (They raised their eyebrows so I assumed it was a question..who knows...maybe they were calling me a noodle.)

Um, yeah I like noodles, do you?


Uhh...Katie? Do you like noodles?

Katie is a girl I have been friends with since I was 5, and she is pretty darn shy too, she didn't say ONE WORD.


By this point I felt nauseous and was sweating up a storm. I tried just smiling and nodding. This has helped me before.


I think I went into some nonsensical ramble about macaroni at this point. It's not like my use of the Thai language could get me far.


By this point they were all looking at me quizzically, expecting something...I still don't know what.

After 30 excruciating minutes of the noodle debacle was over, but I will never look at pasta the same.

I feel like its judging me...waiting for my discourse on noodles of all sorts.

Friday, May 9, 2008

Shrimp make me gag

I can't help it. I just can't handle them. I don't even like to be in the same room with them.

And I think I know why...
Ugh. Sea Monkeys. My brother had them..and let me tell ya folks, they aren't monkeys! No, they aren't.
They are SHRIMP! Ugh, just look at their little pear shaped bodies, and that one has hair! And a baby!

Wednesday, May 7, 2008


I have none.

Well, some. But still.

Last summer I was house-sitting for my dad and step mom while they were out of the country. My little brother was staying there as well, and the youth group from the church my dad pastors came over to swim in the pool. I was inside when this kid Matt (not my fiance) came in.

Matt: Bekah, I think you need to come outside.

Me: Why? Is everyone okay?

Matt: The cat is in the pool.

Me: Well who put the cat in the pool!? Cats don't like to swim! Get him out!

Matt: Umm, Bekah, he is at the bottom.

At that point I just rushed outside. True enough, Hugs (the cat) was at the bottom of the pool. And must have been there over night at least.

We got him out, but it was very obviously too late.

Now, I realize this is NOT funny, but it was kind of funny in the Oh-my-gosh, what-the-heck happened and what do I do way. Here I am, the only "adult" with about 25 teenagers all standing around staring at my dads dead cat. And with the invention of camera phones there were even more people witnessing Hug's demise.

How does one even dispose of a dead cat?

One of the kids, Justin, volunteered to burn (cremate if you will) it on the driveway.

Absolutely not.

So Everett helped me dig a hole and bury him. I was busy trying to think how I was going to break the news to my dad.

"That okay?" he asked.

I looked down and he had buried the cat, but left his tail sticking up out of the dirt.

"Everett!" I shrieked, "Bury him all the way!!"

Eventually Hugs was laid to rest and I set about contacting my dad to explain.

They just don't make a hallmark card for that sort of thing. "Sorry Dad, your cat drowned and the whole youth group saw it." At least not that I could find.

R.I.P. Hugs. You will be missed, and you can bet your little soggy bottom you will be remembered!

Tuesday, May 6, 2008


My post yesterday about Matt made me remember some of the less appetizing meal I have eaten...and cooked but that is irrelevant.

My first thought was of when we were in Thailand, smack dab in the middle of city of Chiang Mai. We had just gotten off of an 18 hour flight, so we were pretty much exhausted. Ricky picked us up at the airport and assumed we must all be famished, so he took us to a street vendor who gave us a noodle dish. It was delicious. He then gave us each of glass of some funky soy milk that tasted suspiciously like grass. There was no way we could turn this down, so we all drank it and thanked him profusely...he thought we liked it so much he bought us more. Very generous.
That is me standing in the back of the picture, once again not paying attention. My dad made our entire group, chaperones included, wear that hideous green so "no one gets lost in the airport." Nevermind that we were all adults. It just does nothing for my skin.

I also ate a worm on that trip. Yeah, you read that right. A silkworm to be exact. We went to an night bazaar, and I have this idea that if I am in a culture, I should at least try what they do. And they, apparently, eat silkworms.

Not good my friends. Not good. Did you know, that when a worm is fried, all those little segments get flaky? Said flakes WILL get stuck in your teeth, and you WILL be tasting silkworm all night.

It was worth it though. How many people can say they have been to Thailand and eaten a worm? Three that I know of. Me, Joe, and Sarah.

Monday, May 5, 2008

Happy Cinco de Mayo

In honor of Cinco de Mayo, I am posting a picture of Matt eating in Peru.
Don't mind the look on his face, in a few seconds you will know why.

You might ask how posting a picture of Matt eating in Peru is honoring a Mexican holiday.'s not. But still, I had to show you this!

Because what he is eating, while not Cinco de Mayo related, is interesting none the less. That, my friends, is a guinea pig. With the foot attached.

I am convinced that he took this picture to horrify me. The foot is in his mouth, ugh.

*I have no idea why it is so bad on here, blogger does some weird things!*

You see I had a pet guinea pig. Her name was Squeaks. Creative I know. And when I heard that they eat guinea pigs in Peru, I automatically had the mental image of a herd of stampeding guinea pigs. Just picture it. Hundreds of Guinea Pigs running together, tossing their manes ( umm...make that tossing their fur), squeaking with freedom!

Just breaks my heart.

Oh, and Happy Cinco de Mayo!

Friday, May 2, 2008

Jumping Dogs

My little dog is growing up so fast. Seems like just yesterday he was leaping headfirst off the couch. Oh no wait, that was yesterday. Jaco loves to jump, and honestly, I think he might be part rabbit. The little guy can get some air. He flies through the air and his ears fly in the wind. He looks so happy when he is running around and leaping. Pure joy.

Unless of course, I do this.

For some reason he doesn't like being on the trampoline. He didn't hate it, but he certainly didn't like it. Or me. Can't you just see the betrayal in his face?

Are you kidding me? Who does that? C'mon (wo)man!

Then Branson got on, he was also a little scared, but he warmed to the idea much faster than Jaco.

I like that picture.

Thursday, May 1, 2008

Country Mouse does a wedding

I have no business planning a wedding. Seriously. What was I thinking?

I really have no intention of letting this blog turn into a wedding blog..mostly because I have come to the realization that every bride should come to. No one cares about your wedding as much as you do.

No, not even your groom. It's not that they don't care at all, it is just that they can see what you are having trouble seeing...the wedding doesn't change the marriage.

Sorry, no, it doesn't.

But I came to realize this. The wedding is in two months, so Invitations went out yesterday (well, most of them did, there are still several, and by several i mean a lot, without addresses. Because that is how organized I am.) And being young and poor, I decided to do them myself. I scored a great deal on the invitations, they totaled around $30 for about 200 of the little suckers.

And I wrote them myself, sans a template. How hard can it be right?

Harder than I thought, that's how hard! It wasn't until I had them all assembled and sealed that I realized I didn't put a space on the RSVP cards or a return address to identify who was RSVPing.

So now, every single invitation has my sloppy handwriting on the back that says "Oops! Please write your name on the RSVP card, thanks!"

That was sooo not what I had in mind. It just wasn't the elegant classy invitations I meant to make. But, it does have "bekah" written ALL over it.

That is something I would do, ask anybody. Ask Mosiacroro, ask Matt...I AM A MESS. I tried to tell you before. I am okay with that though. Usually. I get over it pretty quickly and move on to the next thing.

Which in this case is ceremony programs. Haha oh boy.

Wish me luck, or just send white-out!! No really, send white-out.

You might also like:

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...