Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Love, loyalty and the ice luge

Summer wedding number 3 (of 5) was this weekend in Long Island. Obviously I forgot a camera because let’s look at who we’re dealing with here. On the average morning of getting ready for work, I can find neither my keys nor my sunglasses and am usually wearing two different shoes. Sometimes I sit down with my cereal and a magazine and after a while realize it’s not the weekend and I really need to stop reading about the most recent attempt at a Guns n Roses reunion tour and go to work.
The wedding was on a Sunday and, though it was beautiful, I have to say that the reality of having to go to work the next day somewhat curbed the potential madness. Not enough for me to say no to the ice luge and a couple of tequila shots, but enough to leave by 11pm and be home in the city by midnight. Sunday weddings are tough for a lot of people, apparently, because some of the chairs emptied before dinner was even served.
We didn't know a lot of people there, but quickly made the kind of friends one can only make around an ice luge. At one point I offered to switch dates with this big guy named Al because his seat didn’t have freezing air blowing directly on it. The wedding people were trying to cool the entire room of 300 by turning one table--mine--into another ice sculpture. Something in my desperation must have appealed to Al, because on his way out he grabbed Rob and said "marry her" and I'm pretty certain he was talking about me. Do you see how this happens, people? It's bizarre.

Sunday, July 29, 2007

They had me at "wine bar"

Last weekend after dinner with friends, Rob and I discovered a little wine bar called Pasita in the West Village. We went in for a drink and met the owner, a guy named Joel from Venezuela, who opened the bar with his wife. It was fun--the kind of place where the bartender pours you a random sample of a wine he thinks you'll like (apparently not noticing that you probably don't need any more wine, considering the before-dinner drinks, the during-dinner drinks, and the glass you just pounded a lot faster than you meant to.) So on Tuesday, when I was thinking about a place to meet my friend Matt, Pasita seemed like a nice choice. And on Thursday, when a friend/coworker Keith was in town, Pasita again was the obvious way to go. The bartender gave me a smile of recognition and then a slightly confused look when I walked in the third time, with the third guy. He either thinks I'm a call girl or a wino with nowhere else to go. I'm not sure which is worse. The only negative about Pasita is that you end up smelling like garlic and herbed meat and your boyfriend (if he wasn't there with you) won't go near you when you get home. Plus the thing about them thinking you're a call girl.

Friday, July 27, 2007

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

You better cry, chicken boys

The Tour de France is stunning. It's stunning how beautiful the route is, through adorable small towns and past lush green hills, with amazing views from rocky cliffs. It's stunning how difficult it is and how the athletes can push their way through it, especially when they each weigh 3 1/2 lbs. And it's stunning how these guys are such huge cheaters and think they can get away with it.
Basically, if you're watching it for anything but the view, I'm not really sure what you're getting out of it. Michael Rasmussen (who is called Skeletor in my house), aside from being one of the most disturbing looking men alive, blatantly flouted the rules of testing and disappeared during training. He's been kicked out of the race and fired from his team. Good. I hope he goes somewhere and eats a sandwich or something and thinks about what a loser he is. Alexander Vinokourov was found with someone else's blood in his system. What? First of all, that's apparently the easiest thing to test for and second of all, gross. The extra blood, by the way, increases the amount of red blood cells in the body, which means more oxygen and better athletic performance. Because of this, his entire team had to bow out of the race. If I was one of the guys who wasn't doping, I would kick his ass. Several times.
But I'm guessing most of them are doping, because it seems to be the norm for the sport. At least some of them aren't getting away with it.
More on Vinokourov
More on Skeletor

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

He's watching The Incredible Hulk

This pic is an edible little boy in the Guatemalan orphanage my mom visited last week. He’s clearly riveted by the show he's watching on tv and doesn't seem to care that a camera is pointed at him. I think this is the third time I’ve blogged about my mom, which definitely makes me kind of lame, but also awesome. It’s all about how you look at it and whether or not you know my mom.
Anyway, she wanted to bring this kid home with her, but that’s not an option, so in a brilliant leap of parental pressure, she’s decided that she no longer cares if I get married as long as I start having kids. She says she can handle the untraditional relationship, so bring on the babies! In response, I went to the pharmacy and ordered more birth control.

There are no stupid questions

What is it that makes a complete stranger dive into an icy river to save a solid gold baby? Maybe we'll never know.

Monday, July 23, 2007

Harry Potter and the Obstacles to Reading

I bought Harry Potter 7 yesterday. It was kind of a hassle to get. On Saturday morning I went to the bookstore across the street and was told “We didn’t order any advance copies. We might get some in next week. We don’t do well with that kind of book.” Um. What kind of book is that? A bestseller?
On Sunday I went to a very high-traffic area of the city to another independent bookstore (I was really trying not to buy this book from Barnes & Noble) and the women at the counter informed me that all of their copies were reserved for people who had pre-ordered and they hadn’t ordered any for the potential walk-in customers. I feel this was a major missed opportunity on their part. Finally I went to a small bookstore on a relatively quiet street and found stacks of the book up at the register. The store manager told me she doesn’t read the books, but she had peeked at the ending of this one to see what all the fuss was about. I tried not to look directly into her eyes, lest any unwanted information pass between us. When I got home, I read 80 pages and then had to go to the roof to explore my alcoholic tendencies. I considered staying home today to read, but it seemed unprofessional.
Jay finished the book in 7 hours on Saturday. See what he had to say about his experience.

Thursday, July 19, 2007

That dream...you know the one

Where you're back in college and you're late for a test, or you're walking down the street and you suddenly realize you're naked. The other night I had the one where Bon Jovi, Kevin Bacon, and Kiefer Sutherland are scuba diving, but at the same time commentating an NFL game. And I'm on the boat with my college boyfriend, who I am somehow dating again, which is absolutely horrifying. And I know this will surprise you, but there were no helpful websites to explain my dream to me. As though that's a dream that most people don't have or something. Analysis welcome. In the meantime, I did find out what some other common dreams mean:

Falling: As with most common dream themes, falling is an indication of insecurities, instabilities, and anxieties. According to Freudian theory, dreams of falling indicate that you are contemplating giving into a sexual urge or impulse. You may be lacking indiscretion.

Failing a test: These dreams usually have to do with your self-esteem and confidence or your lack of. You are worried that you are not making the grade and measuring up to other people's expectations of you. You have probably been drinking too much.

Raisins: To dream that you are eating raisins signifies that negative forces and discouraging comments will seek to diminish your hopes when they are about to be realized. (Interesting. I would have guessed iron deficiency.)

Where Babies Come From

My mom is in Guatemala right now with her friend Rachel. They're visiting the 3-month-old baby Rachel is going to adopt. At the end of the week they have to come home without the baby, which I'm sure will be hard. With all of the adoption laws, I think the baby will be almost a year old when Rachel gets to take her home.
Why do I keep calling her "the baby"? Because her given name is Brenda--very Latin America, no? Rachel is going to rename her Isabella or Grace.
My mom says there are guards everywhere carrying guns, but she just smiles at them. They're probably like "Who is this crazy woman and why is she smiling at us?"
I love the first pic of Rachel and the baby. So sweet. Plus, awesome cleavage.

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Cover your ass

I'm not sure if this has been widely disseminated, but Kenyans are pissed off because the government is making them put diapers on their donkeys to keep the roads clean. I'm not kidding. This strikes me as an excellent solution to the NYC dog issue, but it has not been a popular decision so far. Here is my favorite quote regarding the situation:

"If we have to put nappies on our donkeys, soon they will say our cows need them too," one donkey owner said.

Nappies on cows? Now that's just silly.

Monday, July 16, 2007

True Story

Me: Do you think Jack Handey is funny?

Rob: Jack Handey?

Me: Yeah. You know, Jack Handey.

Me: If trees could scream, would we be so cavalier about cutting them down? We might, if they screamed all the time, for no good reason.

Me: As the sky turned from a salmon to a flint gray, I thought about the salmon I had caught that morning, and how gray he was, and how I named him Flint.

Me: If I was being put to death by injection, I'd clean up my cell real neat. Then, when they came to get me, I'd say "Injection? I thought you said inspection." They'd probably feel pretty bad and maybe I could get out of it.

Me: You're getting less and less attracted to me, aren't you?

Rob: Oh, you can sense that?

End Scene

Sunday, July 15, 2007

I am recommending a book

It has stripes and a pink cover with a chicken on it. It's called A Complicated Kindness and is narrated by a 16-year-old Mennonite girl in a small Canadian town. She smokes and drinks and worships Lou Reed, and her commentary on life in a cultish religious community where everyone is related in several ways (her parents are also first cousins) is hilarious and sometimes very sad. There are parts of this book I really wish I had written.

That's sad, I said. No parents. And he laughed and said I've got something else and then he held up his cigarette in one hand and his bottle of Old Stock in the other hand and said: Mom. And Dad. When he dropped me off my own parents were playing badminton in the front yard. My mom was wearing white canvas Keds that she'd gotten in the States, and pedal pushers. And my dad was in his suit, of course. They waved to Bert and I told him to hide his mom and dad or I'd never get to go driving with him again.

If anyone wants to borrow this book, let me know. I'm almost done and I have access to a few other copies.

Friday, July 13, 2007

Thursday, July 12, 2007

A triathlon is not in my near future

My big plan is to start working out in the mornings, since I can’t find the time or energy to do it at the end of the day. I also decided that in order to motivate myself to get up early, I would try a new and exciting exercise: swimming. I don’t know how to swim. I mean, I wouldn’t drown if I was thrown into a lake, but I probably would drown if I had to swim across it freestyle. So I bought myself a black silicone swim cap and pink goggles, packed my swimsuit into my gym bag and headed out the door at 6am. I felt minor trepidation approaching the pool, but no one was there except for a lifeguard and two other people standing around talking. I got into the slow lane and did not start off well. I know you’re supposed to put your head in the water when you’re swimming, but I just couldn’t do it. When my new goggles broke after 3 laps, I figured that was my reprieve. Um, no. The lifeguard came over and among his choice lines was “You don’t look good.” First of all, no one wants to hear that. Ever. Especially at 6:30 in the morning when they’ve shoved their hair into a hideous bathing cap and are flailing around desperately in the shallow end of a pool. But then he fixed my goggles, told me how to breathe under water: blow bubbles out of your nose and breathe in through your mouth. This is probably ridiculously obvious for those of you who know how to swim, but it made me feel very skeptical of the swim lessons I took every year as a kid. I don’t know how to breathe while swimming and I never learned to dive. I am, however, a master of the kickboard. So there.
I practiced what the lifeguard had taught me for another 15 minutes before feeling like I might be sick to my stomach, which seemed like a good stopping point. On my way out, he mentioned that the next thing I needed to learn to do was kick (I swear to god, I thought I was kicking) and that I might want to take a lesson. “See how the good swimmers are doing it?” he gestured to three people in the fast lane. Still, I am not mad at this guy. He gives swim lessons and I might take one. It should be a great exercise in humility, if nothing else.

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Relax, I'm on a lunch break

I wish that someone would pay me to sit here and blog. Obviously, that would suck for you guys, since I’m not that interesting, but sometimes it seems like I might be better suited to anonymous judgment as opposed to what I really get paid for which is Client Services (yes, I know, it sounds like I work in an illicit massage parlor.) Other things I think I could do well for money:

-read books (this could be a viable option, if I was also interested in reviewing them. I’m not. See Book Cannibal for your review needs.)
-charm your parents (but of course I would do this for free)
-delete spam and stare at the wall (not that this would be fun, but we can’t run away from our inherent skills)
-shop (kind of defeats the purpose, no?)

Anyway. For now, I will sit here eating pretzels and attempt to get closer to my real dream job: sleeping in and then grabbing a book and going for coffee. If my parents' lives are any indication, what I am truly striving for is retirement.

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

At the risk of encouraging your curiosity

Yet another trip without a camera has gone by. Although this time, it may have been a subconscious move on my part, since everyone in Rob’s family is incredibly tall (13-year-old niece: 5’9”) and I always end up feeling like that short, stout teapot. His niece was very curious about our relationship and said things like “Why won’t he just ASK you?” and “Maybe he’ll ask you tonight.” It was actually very cute, until the rest of the family and their friends and their friends’ pets joined in. During these conversations I am constantly looking around the room for my mother, the possible ventriloquist.

Wednesday, July 4, 2007

Amanda and Dan should move here

Dan grows a tree during drinks.

Amanda is a bunny.

Dan, against a delicious backdrop of gay pride.

Happy Independence Day!

4th of July is one of my favorite holidays because you don't typically have to travel anywhere, there's usually a fun barbecue, the weather is nice, no gifts are given, and there are fireworks.
So I'm heading out of the house in a while to buy cupcakes to bring to San Diego, where I'm going tonight to see Rob's family for an extra-long weekend. I'll be missing the bbq and fireworks because the only Delta flight to San Diego gets in at 9. If it rains, I'm going to punch someone.