Thursday, May 22, 2008

Blog, Interrupted

Rob and I are taking our car (name yet to be determined as I just don't feel like we know each other well enough) and driving to Virginia to see Penny and Bill tomorrow. I'm looking forward to the road trip, even though I know it will be long, there will be major traffic, and Rob will begin employing various forms of profanity approximately 7 minutes after we leave. But there will be snacks.

I also have some work travel coming up and will likely not be posting very much, which is the real reason for the blog subject. I'm heading to LA next week for 7 days, followed by 5 days in San Francisco. So there might be some posting, and there might not, and if anyone wants to nominate themselves to do a guest blog, let me know. I am ready to judge your deepishness.

Hope everyone has a fantastic Memorial Day weekend!

I'd like to end this post with a short commercial:

The Furminator, which is a de-shedding tool I first learned about from Dooce, really works. It is easy to use and highly effective. Just be sure you have a vacuum around when it's over, because things get crazy with The Furminator.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Play fair or go home

Post primaries in Kentucky and Oregon, we still have two candidates for the Democratic Presidential nominee. While I don’t really have a strong position on whether Hillary Clinton stays in the race or bows out at this point, I think it’s clear that she cannot secure the nomination. I respect the Senator, I understand her strong desire to see this race to the finish, and I get that she wants to send a message to the people who have stood by her during the campaign. However, I do not accept the fact that she is trying to somehow get the Florida and Michigan votes counted in her favor.
According to the New York Times today:

Mrs. Clinton is also focused on some tangible goals by staying in the race: she believes that racking up more victories, delegates and votes will give her and her supporters more leverage this month at a Democratic National Committee rules meeting to advocate for seating the delegates from the unofficial primaries in Florida and Michigan.

The DNC should and will find a way to seat the delegates from those states, as Howard Dean has announced. But Clinton and her campaign don’t just get to rewrite the rules at this point, acting as though they did not agree to them from the start. It’s the stuff schoolyard fights are made of. Which is to say, it’s juvenile and we should be able to expect better.

Happy birthday, Mom!

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Almost there? I think he nailed it.

My advance apologies to the readers who don't think cat vomit is a form of artistic expression.

When I got home from work yesterday, I discovered that Smokey had left a message. Unsure of what exactly he was trying to convey, I looked closely for clues. He is commonly known to be a Barack Obama fan, so I believe this was not a statement against the Senator. Rather my theory is that this was a deliberate attack on The Economist or perhaps Rob's reading of The Economist, which tends to divert his attention from Smokey.

Message delivered. And immediately disposed of.

Monday, May 19, 2008

Diagnoses: Cooties

I spent Saturday almost completely unconscious due to the latest disgusting cold I've managed to pick up. It might have happened on one of the airplanes from Chicago or Toronto, or while I was talking on my bacteria-ridden cell phone, or biting my nails after typing on my grimy keyboard. Or--and this is my best guess--it is Rob's fault, because he was sick last week and even though we only spent about 12 hours together all week, he has that kind of infectious ability.

But we had planned to go to Long Island in our shiny new car to see his sister and her kids. Recognizing that this was not a good idea, I tried to gracefully bow out.

Rob: Please come with me.

Me: I'm sick. I don't want to get the kids sick.

Rob: You're not contagious anymore. They'll be fine.

Me: I think that's an old wives tale, the thing about not being contagious when you're sick. I'm all germy. I can tell.

Rob: You're germy because you live in New York. It's filthy.

[Silence as I considered this.]

Rob: And because you're a girl.

Thursday, May 15, 2008

All hail Jack Handey

It's not exactly like a guest blogger blogging on the blog. Nevertheless, from this week's New Yorker, I give you:

The Symbols on My Flag (And What They Mean)
by Jack Handey

The bra and panties stand for women’s rights.

Davy Crockett shaking hands with Daniel Boone symbolizes how we need to put aside our differences.

The skull and crossbones, in the lower right corner, stands for pirates, and all that they have given us.

The angel holding the sword represents how guns are nice but swords are more of a “heavenly” thing.

The plow with the four-leaf clover symbolizes the luck of the farmer.

The quicksand represents the travails of life. The hand sticking out of it is so you know it’s quicksand and not just a dirty spot on the flag.

The bat stands for eternal life, through our lord Dracula.

The sheaf of wheat symbolizes the bounty of the land, and the hope that soon more things will come in sheaves.

The parrot represents the need to communicate, even if it’s only squawks.

The tin of paprika stands for paprika, a spice I hope to learn more about.

The triskelion indicates that I know what a triskelion is.

The sun on the horizon makes you wonder, Is it rising or setting? And is it our sun or a weird invader sun? The five rays coming out of the sun symbolize the five times that I have had sex.

The big word “NO” refers to the boy running with the pair of scissors. If you look closer, you can see that he also has a pair of scissors sticking in his thigh and another in his belly. This symbolizes the need for kids not to run with scissors, especially if they’ve already been stuck by scissors.

The bulldozer pushing over the pine tree stands for progress. And the bluebird flying out of the tree symbolizes the way bluebirds fly off when you knock down their trees.

The rose stands for blood. So does the sparkling ruby. And so does the bucket with “Blood” written on the side. All hail Dracula!

The eagle, you will note, is the centerpiece of my flag. It symbolizes freedom. Also the ability to see far away, so you can spot somebody doing something fishy and get him locked up.

In his talon, the eagle is holding a clutch of arrows. This symbolizes the growing problem of Indian litterbugs. Wrapped around the eagle’s other talon is a big ball of fishing line, which represents my love of fishing.

The banner in the eagle’s beak, if you can’t read it, says “Courage, Valor, Dignity, ANTS!!”

It’s easy to tell what some of the symbols on my flag mean. The tweezers symbolize tweezing. The dog symbolizes doggies. Good boy! Good doggie! But the meaning of other symbols is not so clear, even to me. What does the T. rex stepping on the Martian mean? Perhaps scholars can figure it out.

My flag started out as nothing more than the word “NO” on a blank background and has evolved over the years. Recently, my friend Don told me that my flag had too many symbols, that it was “cluttered.” I wanted to punch him, but instead I ran out into the howling storm, fell on my knees, and railed against the night. “Why me, Lord?” I sobbed. “Why me?” Then I saw my flag, illuminated by my spotlight and my rotating Christmas color wheel, flying proudly above the tool shed. As the flag snapped in the wind, some of my symbols, which I guess I hadn’t sewn on too well, flew off like leaves. There were also some real leaves blowing by, but mostly it was symbols. And I thought, Maybe Don’s right. Maybe I do need to “thin out” my flag. So I wound up removing some of the symbols, leaving only the ones you see here today. If it’s still “cluttered,” then so be it. I would rather have a cluttered flag than one that has no meaning whatsoever.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Alvin? He sounds mischievious

Rob and I are going to pick up the newest member of our family today. This new addition is gray, born this year, and will live in a garage near our apartment.

A car!

I love driving, but have done it approximately 5 times since I moved to New York in 2005. I have a terrible vision of driving off the lot and directly into a cab or a parked car. Rob rents cars fairly often for work purposes. So I've decided he will be in charge of driving the car home and I will be in charge of naming it.

Which reminds me of a recent conversation I had with one of my many pregnant friends.

Friend: What names do you like for a boy?

Me: I like Simon.

Friend: Simon? He sounds smart.

Me: I think that's because he was the smart one on The Chipmunks.

Friend: Good point.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Whoa, free money

It's not like I didn't know this was coming, but I was thrilled to get my $600 check from the US Treasury today. Clearly they are unaware of the things I've been saying about them and their moms.

Sadly, I plan to be responsible (read: uncreative) with the money and use it towards paying off a credit card. But wait, now that I think about it, that's just like thumbing my nose* at the Fed and the Bush administration, right? I mean, this money is for the economic stimulus plan. I'm supposed to put it back into circulation by rushing out to get new pants or my 14th IPod.

But I can't be that easily fooled, government. I'll just get my credit card to a reasonable level and then I'll wander down to Soho. On my own terms.

*I know. Nose thumbing. Pretty extreme. I would bite my thumb at them, but it's not like I know them personally.

Monday, May 12, 2008

Air Curmudgeon

I spent the weekend in Chicago for a variety of reasons, and though none involved my upcoming wedding, many conversations with friends and family centered around the celebration and the general future. The following questions were posed by family members during the trip:

"Are you pregnant?" This, I think, was inspired by the fact that the main reason I was in town was Amanda's baby shower. Though by definition that makes Amanda pregnant. Not me.

"What is the point of getting married if you're keeping your name and not having a traditional wedding?" To which the only response is a smile and a lengthy sip of one's Bloody Mary.

"What do you want to name your kids?" What kids?

After a Mother's Day brunch involving said Bloody Marys, I passed out for an hour and then prepared to go to the airport. The 3:20pm flight was delayed, then it was delayed again, and again, and by the time we boarded the plane at 5pm and I discovered I had a middle seat, I was really ready to leave. The girl next to me tried to start a conversation, but I quickly shut her down, either with my blank stare or my chicken pesto sandwich breath. Not sure, don't care. She opened the airline magazine.

Two hours later, we found ourselves still in Chicago and being asked to deplane due to a mechanical problem with the aircraft. I handled this well, mostly because I would rather be inconvenienced on the ground than airborne in a defective plane. And another bonus of not dying in a potential plane crash, I was able to get my seat reassigned to an aisle.

I was making myself comfortable in my freedom seat on the new plane when the older woman assigned to the middle seat showed up. Her lips seemed puckered into permanent disapproval, all aimed at me. What had I done with the girl in 11D?

"They told us we couldn't switch seats," she said accusingly.

"Really. Well, I have a new boarding pass and everything," I told her, resisting the urge to wave it around as proof.

She settled in and looked at the young girl in the window seat. "Here we are again," she said amiably enough, though I could feel her staring at me, and then across the aisle at two empty seats.

"I'm going to move over there."

"You should," I said. "Be comfortable."

"I'll just ask first," she said pointedly.

The flight attendant confirmed that the seats were in fact available, and the woman began collecting her 97 small-to-midsize bags. She left a pink clutch on the seat, so I picked it up to hand it to her. She snatched it away, without a thank you, as I'm sure she thought that in addition to being a seat stealer, I was also after her collection of coins and her makeup from 1942. Because after waiting 5 hours to leave O'Hare, what I really want to do is rip off a little old lady so I can buy an airline snack pack with nickels.

*Catherine, do not take offense at this. You are, in heart and mind, much younger than this woman.

Friday, May 9, 2008

Happy Friday!

The blogosphere is a better place today, people.

Dan has arrived.

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Sarah by any other name

I have thought extensively about taking Rob's name when we get married. I have written it on napkins and post-its, said it out loud, carved it into wet cement late at night when no one was looking, scrambling away when I heard the police sirens rounding the corner, so fearful was I that they would find out where I had hidden the drug money...wait, movie. But I did recently write it several times on a post-it.

Here's the thing. It looks like someone else's name. And I guess that's the point. We're embarking on this new life together, a new family. But how come I have to change my entire name when all Rob has to change is his habits, his bedtime, and his diet?

Some time ago, shortly after we got engaged, I polled 5 of my unmarried girlfriends to get their take on the issue. I asked them if they would change their names and if it would be an easy decision, one requiring some thought, or one requiring a lot of thought.

Considering this obviously representative sample (of women between the ages of 25-31 with whom I have gotten drunk more than ten times), I was surprised by the unanimity of the responses.

Friend one: will change name, requires some thought
Friend two: will change name, easy decision
Friend three: will probably change name, amount of thought depends on what the name is (Friend three is still a bit traumatized after dating a guy with the last name Dworkbinder.)
Friend four: will change name, easy decision
Friend five: still owes me an answer and this was at least 7 months ago. Dude.

For me, it took a great deal of thought, but ultimately I have decided not to change my name. And Rob has decided not to change his habits. We're both happy.

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

They call me the Middle Man

Me: Hi, dad. What are you doing?

Joe: Watching the Cubs game.

Rob [enters living room]: Why are you calling your dad during the Cubs game?

Me: He doesn’t mind.

Me to Joe: Did you see Barack Obama on Meet The Press this weekend?

Joe: I did. He was very good.

Me: I thought so, too. Rob gave him an A+.

Rob: It was just an A. And stop speaking for me.

Me: Stop interrupting my phone call.

Rob: Ask your dad when they’re coming back to visit.

Me to Joe: Rob wants to know when you’re coming to visit.

Rob: They haven’t been here in more than a year. Tell him they get an F.

Me: Rob gives you an F.

Joe: I’ll look at the calendar.

Conversation continues. Joe teaches me a new word.

Me: Bye dad.

Joe: Bye. Have a good week. Tell Rob I miss him.

Monday, May 5, 2008

Cinco de Mayo!

If you think this is just a holiday that means go out, drink margaritas, and eat enchiladas, then you are wrong. Dead wrong.

You can also have tacos or a burrito.

But you should probably learn a little bit about the holiday since you are using it as a reason to imbibe instead of going to pilates class (yes, this means you.)

Take this quiz so that you can say you really earned those margaritas.

Friday, May 2, 2008

Happy Friday!

Grab some Clorox wipes, people. I have just learned that an office keyboard has more bacteria than a toilet seat. Since the study was done in 2002, I'm guessing some of you already know this...but it was horrifying news to me. I will now proceed to wrap my hands in plastic and continue my work.

This post was brought to you by Clorox and the word Ew.

Thursday, May 1, 2008

Foiled again

I went to the doctor yesterday. It was just for a check-up, so they took my blood pressure, monitored my heart beat, weighed me, was the potentially exciting part...measured my height. I know this is ridiculous, but whenever someone measures my height (because it happens so often), I get a sudden rush of hope like maybe, just maybe, I've grown. I will be 30 years old this year. If I've grown, up is not the direction. And although I am well aware of this, my ability to delude myself wins out every time.

"How tall am I?" I asked the possibly mute 14-year-old medical assistant. I think she was a little thrown off by my exuberance, but she gamely gave me the answer.

Alas. Still 5'4".