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June 5, 2010 / merlisser

101 update and finishing the list… or something

Apparently, I inspired one of my friends to start her own 101 list. so I figured I would update mine. At one point, I was going to update once a month in the first place so here goes.

1001 days from the day I started my list is Wednesday, April 11, 2012. So I got a little less than two years to get going.

My first problem. I can’t think of 101 things to do. So I guess #1 is to figure out 101 things. And yes I still haven’t completed the freaking list. Of course, I am also realizing that some of my goals just might be mutually exclusive which means there is no way I can achieve all of them. Yeah, I’m complicated.

Let’s see.


  1. Go to a Little Rock Tweet up
  2. Go to Memphis in May
  3. Get a Smart phone
  4. Go to National Association for Criminal Defense lawyers annual meeting. (Okay to be fair, I went to the Spring Meeting instead of the annual meeting but dammit, I’m going to count it.
  5. Get Linked In profile updated
  6. Get certified for conflicts list in Arkansas State court
  7. Get practice management software/system set up
  8. Go to my 15 year college reunion (It was held on April 17, 2010 and I was there)
  9. Go see Conan O’Brien (okay I’m aware that this is slightly cheating but if at the time of the inception of this list if there was a chance in hell of Conan touring, I would have put it on here. So yeah. WHEEE)
  10. I got a professional massage after the Little Rock half marathon. AWOO HOO

Things that I am definitely on track to complete

  1. To complete two half marathons (I completed the Little Rock Marathon half so one down and one to go
  2. Get my passport renewed (as of today, I have an application)
  3. Go back to Africa (I met this law professor who is going to Africa with grant money to do research and I’ve been picking his brain on ways to get to go back. This one just might happen.)
  4. Read 100 books (well I am reading. Strangely, I forgot I had this and wasn’t keeping up with it. So far, the number I have is 4.)
  5. Go to Washington DC (the place where I interned is having their 50 year anniversary party around Thanksgiving this year)
  6. Clear out 101 items for yardsale, recycling, or trash. (This will be done really really soon. LIke in the next couple of weeks)
  7. I’ve picked the dates for the Arkansas Governor’s School reunion and now it’s just a matter of picking venues. (oh lord please let me get some venues down before July 30….)

The Health things are slowly but surely. I’ve fallen off the track with those. I hurt my arm at a party and so the push ups are out. I’m letting it heal. I’m getting back to running. i am doing the Couch to 5K to do it right and not hurt myself. It’s good though. The food stuff will come. I’ve actually gained weight but I am out of several of the stressful positions that I was in that were causing me to stress eat.

The piano stuff. oh lord I haven’t even played one note since I wrote this list. Oh and my wrist hurts so this should be interesting.

The entire list so far.

  1. To complete a marathon
  2. To complete two half marathons (I completed the Little Rock Marathon half so one down and one to go
  3. To complete the 100 push up challenge (I haven’t even done the initial fitness test on these. I need to get started)
  4. To complete the 200 sit up challenge
  5. To complete the 200 squat challenge
  6. Try drinking green monsters for a week.
  7. Drink 64 ounces of water a day.
  8. Run 3 times a week (2/143 (there are 143 weeks in 1001 days) Subgoal is for 3 months. If I can do it straight for then I will cross it off the list.
  9. Yoga twice a week X/143 with subgoal of 2 times a week for three months. Hopefully it will be a habit by then.
  10. Get a bike
  11. Try a triathalon
  12. Get my passport renewed (as of today, I have an application)
  13. Go back to Africa
  14. Go to Washington DC
  15. Go to a Little Rock Tweet up
  16. Go to the Little Rock Film Festival
  17. Go to Memphis in May
  18. Go to Voodoo Music festival in New Orleans
  19. Build a Habitat for Humanity house
  20. See the William Faulkner things in Oxford, Mississippi
  21. See the Hemingway things in Piggott, Arkansas
  22. Lose 100 pounds (what? one pound every 10 days)
  23. Read 100 books
  24. Read all Faulkner novels
  25. Get a Smart phone (blackberry or iphone) I got a BlackBerry Storm around Christmas time.
  26. Get Linked In profile up date
  27. Grow linked in Network (working on it)
  28. Go to National Association for Criminal Defense lawyers annual meeting (Spring Meeting in Memphis May 2010. Okay I said annual but I’m counting this one).
  29. Try a jury trial
  30. Win a jury trial
  31. Get certified for conflicts list in Arkansas State court
  32. Get certified for CJA list in federal court
  33. Get practice management software/system set up
  34. Get time management system set up (probably something like Randy Pausch’s system)
  35. Clean office (big clean)
  36. After big clean, pick once a week to clean office X/143
  37. See all Harry Potter movies as they come out saw Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince on 7/17/2009)
  38. Get professional site up and running (already bought domain)
  39. Blog on my legal site once a week (starting from completion of set up)
  40. Be living in a different city or town than the one I am in by the end date of this list. (Wednesday, April 11, 2012)
  41. Get over fear of dentist and get all my dental work done
  42. Get a pair of black Manolo pumps. (I never said they couldn’t be shallow things)
  43. Get a Vespa.
  44. Keep brows groomed with once a month waxing appointments1/34
  45. get a professional massage
  46. get a facial
  47. Try sushi (no I’ve never tried it)
  48. See Nine Inch Nails or the Dandy Warhols in Concert. (I figure one or the other will tour in the next three-ish years) Okay guys Nine INch Nails has already done their last concert EVER and I missed it. EPIC FAIL!
  49. Learn ballroom or salsa dancing.
  50. Figure out the perfect margarita recipe.
  51. Finish learning Hungarian Rhapsody #2. (yeah I dream big. I might be closer to this than you think)
  52. Learn Un Sospiro by Liszt
  53. give blood
  54. put $5000 in savings. (hopefully more)
  55. Try acupuncture
  56. Send a letter or other type of non business/ non holiday related snail mail once a month 0/34
  57. Participate in the 365 day photo challenge
  58. Identify 101 things that make me happy
  59. Put my attorney profile on Law Link
  60. Try the 21 day challenge
  61. Clear out 101 items for yardsale, recycling, or trash. (I’m a clutter bug, this is actually a low number)
  62. Advertise my business on MonticelloLive
  63. mail a secret to Post Secret
  64. See my grandmother in person at least once every two months. (seriously it’s been so long since I’ve seen my grandma and she only lives 50 miles away)
  65. Go to my 10 year law school reunion
  66. Go to my 15 year college reunion April 17, 2010
  67. Go to my 20 year high school reunion (yes they all fall within the 1001 days)
  68. Organize and attend Arkansas Governor’s School class of 1990 reunion. (apparently no one else is going to organize it so it might as well be me)
  69. Try a pomegranite margarita
  70. Make the roast chicken from Julia Child’s Mastering the Art of French cooking
  71. Plan a 5K for charity. (I have this for work and am in the process of doing it)
  72. Try a mojito.
  73. Try the homemade Moon pie from Capital Bar and Grill.
  74. Cook a souffle
  75. Try one new recipe a month. (Yes I’m really up on the cooking)
  76. Run in 6 5ks
  77. Have molefest with Tom
  78. Get a budget set up either via Quicken or mint or something else.
  79. See Fellini’s 8 1/2
  80. Eat more ice cream (Thanks LRtweetup)
  81. Go see Conan O’Brien (okay I’m aware that this is slightly cheating but if at the time of the inception of this list if there was a chance in hell of Conan touring, I would have put it on here. So yeah. WHEEE) May 15, 2010
  82. Get the T-Anthony all purpose tote in black with white trim. Yes it is expensive but I have been lusting over this WASPy stylish bag for over 3 years. It’s so chic, man. I never said I didn’t have a shallow bone in my body.
  83. Vote in every election
  84. Volunteer or donate to at least one political campaign for each election
  85. don’t beat myself up if I don’t meet my goals (stole this one from my friend. bwahahahah. I’m a goal stealer.)
  86. Finish the rest of the list (July 15, 2009)
  87. Keep monthly blog updates on my progress (bwahahahahahhahahah yeah that has sooo happened)
  88. Finish list
June 2, 2010 / merlisser

“Come Have a Ball at Mike’s”

It’s the 11th Annual Testicle Festival in Foreman, Arkansas.

I think that speaks for itself.

May 27, 2010 / merlisser

You had me at “LaBamba”

After what can only be described as two crazy weeks, I had almost forgotten that I was had a ticket to see Conan O’Brien. I know, I almost forgot about Conan O’Brien. But really it was crazy.

  • CLE in Memphis (CLE stands for Continuing Legal Education. It’s a fancy way to say I went back to school for two days)
  • Memphis in May was also around that time so i saw the B-52s again. Also, other bands until during the Middle of Hall and Oates (don’t judge me), there was a tornado warning and we all had to leave.
  • Fortunately, i did not die but it was scary
  • I also found out that day that one of my really good friends was in a coma
  • Two days later, she died
  • Tons of crying and a funeral

See I told you it was a lot going on and in the midst of all that mourning, I didn’t realize that Conan was on Saturday until my friend Tiffany sent me a message about three days before the event. See, she lives in Muskogee and was going to let me crash at her place after the show. Aren’t friends great?

Someone asked me “what was the appeal of Conan O’Brien” and I had to pause because while I know theoretically there are people who don’t like him, I couldn’t conceive of why. I guess I just assumed they had brain damage. For me, I guess I relate to his willingness to be silly and his intelligence. He is that smart, dorky guy in school who grew up to be one of the “cool kids” and yet he still sees himself as that dorky guy in school. Maybe I relate to that a little too well. (shut up, I am awesome!) ahem… Triumph the Insult Comic dog. Crap. That mutt is funny.

I make no claims to be “objective” in my fandom of that show. It’s on the short list with Veronica Mars and Dexter. Sorry love it. Due to being so busy I didn’t read any of the reviews or hype regarding the show. The only thing I had even heard was at some point, Conan uses the word “douchebag.” So I went into it with about as open of a mind as I possibly could.

They had me at LaBamba. See when Conan said he was taking his show on the road, he meant “his show” so as much of it as he could take without violating NBC intellectual property laws. Hence the “not legally allowed to be funny on TV” being the title.

The band.

See, its’ the Band. See its’ LaBamba. The band came out and sang a song before Conan ever took the stage. LaBamba and ran through the aisles. Since I had an aisle seat really close to the stage, I got in on that running action.

LaBamba's back.

Unfortunately, my camera was slow and I got his back but it’s LABAMBA!!! LABAMBA!!!

I was a jumping up and down giggly as a school girl fool. And I had a giggly school girl grin throughout the entire show.


There’s a lot of overlap between the TV show and this show. One of the biggest differences is that Conan does a lot of singing and playing his guitar in this show. Many of you might remember he got a whole bunch of musician friends and Will Ferrell to do Freebird as a final song on his show.

Apparently, each spot has a special guest that has some tie to the location. Our special guest was Hanson. Here they are singing “Never Been to Spain”

and at the end, Conan sang a song and ran through the aisles. I touched his arm. *sniff* *silly schoolgirl gush*

Conan runs through the aisle

I think it’s always a good thing to meet your heroes for the simple reason to remind yourself that they are just as human as you are.

May 26, 2010 / merlisser



Originally uploaded by melissathegoofy

You know you love this picture.

May 14, 2010 / merlisser

A story

An old man and his son in the frontier West awoke to find a section of their fence had broken and all their horses had escaped. The son said, “Well isn’t that rotten luck!’ The old man replied,”Maybe. Maybe not.”

The next morning they awoke to find their horses had returned and had brought with them 10 wild horses that had followed them home. The son said,”Well isn’t that wonderful!” The old man replied,”Maybe. Maybe not.”

That afternoon, while trying to break the new horses, the son was thrown and broke his leg. The son said, “This is terrible!” The old man replied,”Maybe. Maybe not.”
The next day, while the son lay recuperating, a group of soldiers came by the homestead rounding… See More up all able-bodied young men to go and fight in the war. They passed the young man by because of his broken leg.

Things happen to us all that at the time may seem tragic, at other times wonderful. We don’t always understand God’s plan for us. Sometimes we can see it in retrospect, but often we remain in the dark. Learn to trust that everything happens for a reason, and that even when we don’t “get it”, God does.

(this was one of my Facebook friend’s status messages)

May 10, 2010 / merlisser

Happy Mother’s Day..

I saw this video over at Damn You Little Rock

May 6, 2010 / merlisser

Goodnight sweet friend

Do not go gentle into that good night,
Old age should burn and rave at close of day;
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

Though wise men at their end know dark is right,
Because their words had forked no lightning they
Do not go gentle into that good night.

Good men, the last wave by, crying how bright
Their frail deeds might have danced in a green bay,
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

Wild men who caught and sang the sun in flight,
And learn, too late, they grieved it on its way,
Do not go gentle into that good night.

Grave men, near death, who see with blinding sight
Blind eyes could blaze like meteors and be gay,
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

And you, my father, there on the sad height,
Curse, bless, me now with your fierce tears, I pray.
Do not go gentle into that good night.
Rage, rage against the dying of the light

_ Do Not Go Gentle into That Good Night– Dylan Thomas.

Dear Angela,

I didn’t hear you were sick until Louise sent me a Twitter direct message on Saturday and I was in Memphis due to a conference and Memphis in May. Well she just said you were in the hospital and she didn’t say intensive care or anything like that. She said you were at UAMS. So I drove to Little Rock from Memphis instead of coming straight home to see you but you weren’t at that hospital. I didn’t have your Dad’s number on my phone and I never had his cell. Well you know that. So I didn’t have any way to find you so I went home. I called your Dad on Monday but I had to work. He told me that you were in a coma and that was only a matter of time. And so I was going to see you Tuesday around noon but you were dead by then. Were you wondering where I was? I keep asking myself that. I didn’t know you had been in the hospital since last Monday. I didn’t know. Nobody told me. I would have been there. Did you spend your last week wondering where I was? I’m sorry. I’m so sorry.

Since I didn’t see you lying in that hospital bed, it hasn’t hit me yet but I can see the light in the distance and it’s getting closer and closer. I know when it finally hits, its’ going to crush me and it’s going to hurt real bad but I know I can’t run from it. I’m just standing there waiting for some impending flash of pain that hasn’t gotten here yet.

I can’t believe you don’t remember the coat incident. We were both in Ms. Judkins’s morning kindergarten class. Back then, kindergarten was only half a day and I was in the morning half. We had the same coat. One day, I put on my coat and started to leave and this girl said “you have my coat.” I told you I didn’t. Crying ensued. I went home to discover my coat was sitting in my closet. So my Mom had to drive me and your coat back to your house I can’t believe you don’t remember this if for no other reason than it was the first of what would become a whole hell of a lot of times that you would say, “See Melissa. I TOLD YOU . . . ”

You know what else? Those were the ugliest ass coats in the history of outerwear. My Mama managed to avoid taking a picture of me in that thing. She was smart. She knew better than to document her baby looking tacky on purpose. Of course, she did have the bad judgment to buy that ugly coat in the first place.

Of course, we didn’t get back under the same radar until we both got put on the “smart kid track” at school. If you are considered a smart kid, you get to take “Advanced Placement” classes. Of course, those are only offered one period a day and as a result, you end up having the same classes with the same 15 or 20 people for the rest of your high school career. We were both in band. We both went to Governor’s School. You ended up going to Girl’s State and subsequently Girl’s Nation.

Oh my God, there was that one time that Sam (my governor’s School boyfriend) came to visit and we went to pick up your boyfriend Charles from Prattsville. We drove to Prattsville. oh man. Crap, that was like 100 miles from our town. That was high school. And we ended up cruising PINE BLUFF of all places. oh crap.

Somehow we lost after high school. I had gone to Hendrix and moved to DC and went to law school. You had gone to UAPB and got a job with the Department of AG and ended up in IOWA and then DC. You got an MBA in DC around the same time I was in law school. Somehow we both managed to move back to this teeny tiny small ass town and like all chance meetings in this teeny tiny small ass town, I ran into you at Wal-Mart.

And well, we became fast friends all over again. I met your kids and somehow even when our schedules got crazy busy, I always ended up chaperoning your kids’ birthday parties. Hell, I even went to Chuck E. Cheese even though I don’t have kids of my own. That’s love. You compared us to that Any Day Now show. We would commiserate over small town syndrome and rage against not being able to find any gorganzola within the town limits. We would talk about all our nerdy pursuits. And somehow we got this crazy tradition where we would watch political debates and give our running commentary about them over the phone. I have no idea why I didn’t just drive to your house and watch them with you.

I knew you had MS. You told me. I’d have to drive you to Little Rock because your nerves couldn’t make the round trip by yourself. Your feet would get numb. Or the next day you would be wiped out. You had to take so much medicine. Yet, your schedule always managed to be busier than mine.

You were a force of nature. You loved attention. . . and football . . . and men. Oh you were such an optimist in matters of the heart.

And fearless, that one time those guys were leaving Sticky Fingers and you said “Why are you leaving? I”m here” One of them said, “What?” “I’m here!” “Who are you?” “The woman you’ve been waiting for all night.” You were always trying to set me up and pimp me out.

Crap there’s so much I could say on here. You loved attention. I think the only reason you didn’t have a blog of your own is that you worked for the federal government with this amazing Americans with Disability Act telecommuting from home position with uber secret security clearance. You’d be all tickled that I’m telling these tales.

There was so much left to do and so much that is now undone. You aren’t going to get to gussy up your daughter for prom or watch your kids graduate from high school. You aren’t going to get to meet all those fellows and girls that your kids are going to date.

I can hear you clearly yelling at them to get ready for bed. I guess because we were such good friends, you wouldn’t hang up the phone to scold them so our conversations would have you saying this like this. “Yes, Walmart is creating a false demand with their .. I TOLD YOU TO GET IN THE TUB SO YOU CAN GET READY FOR BED! . . . beverages.”

I’m so sad that you’re going to get to miss out on all that. You were your days were numbered. You knew that at some point you weren’t going to be able to work and that you were probably going to be in a wheelchair. Hell, we both knew. I just thought that well you could go from us having these intellectual conversations and running around town to me pushing your wheelchair and you occasionally forgetting stuff. I thought there was going to be some sort of weening process, not this quick brutish bam like an invisible bolt of lightning that somehow struck your head and knocked you into unconsciousness.

I saw your Dad yesterday and he was telling me that your last words to him were “You can deduct your job search expenses on your taxes.” I got to thinking what your last words to me were. I think the last I actually saw you was when I drove you to Little Rock to pick up your kids from the Airport. They had gone to visit their father in St. Louis. You took me out to Chi’s as a “thank you/birthday dinner” We even took a picture of all that food.


I just realized what your last words were to me. It was a FB message dated April 25 7:02 p.m.: “He’s attractive”

For some reason, the idea that our last conversation was about boys er… men (We’re not high school teachers, people) makes me smile.

And as for the identity of said man, well, that’s a secret I’m taking to my grave.