November 15, 2007

Construction Delays (Part One)

During the summer of 2002 I was scouting out the Sacramento area Peet’s Coffee locations in preparation for my move up from Los Angeles in August to finish school. After a four year hiatus from college I wanted an easy transition back to student life so I had decided to step down from my management position with Peet’s and transfer to a NorCal location as a regular barista to work fewer hours.

At the time I only knew my family who lived in Lincoln, so I began to look around Roseville for an apartment. Roseville was a 25 minute commute to school, but a brand new Peet’s was supposed to be opening there that summer across from the GREAT! BIG! MALL! I'm sure you can imagine my excitement. But as moving time grew closer, I kept getting the same update about the Roseville Peet’s.

Construction delays.

I realized that my only option was going to be to work at the one Sacramento Peet's location, which meant it would make more sense to move to Sacramento proper. I was bummed because this meant I would be farther from the only souls I knew(and of course that GREAT! BIG! MALL!) but I figured living closer to school and work would afford me the opportunity to meet more people -- and let me tell you, it was one of the best things I ever did. Those construction delays brought me to a major turning point in my life.

In November of 2003, a little over a year after settling into my new Peet’s and my new Sacramento life, a few new holiday hires joined our store. One of them happened to be a guy named Garrett and the first thing I ever noticed about him were his incredible eyes (fret not, his cute behind I would notice later). I was instantly attracted to him, but this is far from a love-at-first-sight story.

If you must know the truth, I can be a little judgmental. Snap judgments seem to be my biggest flaw, but trust me when I tell you this particular situation has certainly taught me a lesson in that. The thing about Garrett's arrival is that I wasn’t the only girl who had noticed. There was plenty of buzz surrounding him, and I thought to myself smugly, "Let the rest of these chicks swoon over him just because he's pretty. I'm so beyond that!" You see, I had just spent 4 years doing some soul searching in Los Angeles (remarkably enough you can find your soul down there if you know where to look) and I felt like I was discriminating, damnit! I had come to Sacramento with a fiercely independent attitude, and I certainly was not going to fall prey to another pretty boy with too much gel in his hair who used to work at The Gap. Been there, done that.

I decided just about instantly that Garrett and I had nothing in common and thus acted accordingly. In my book he was just another prepped out, spoiled douchebag and my independent, all knowing self just didn’t have the time for that.

To this day, that is something I regret.

I spent a good 6-8 months not being the friendliest to him, though I never could quite get those eyes out of my mind. I remember once we had a conversation standing behind the pastry case at Peet’s and the entire time I don’t think I heard a word he was saying. I was absolutely hypnotized by his eyes, and I managed in that conversation to unknowingly twist a button off the back pocket of the green Capri pants I was wearing. When I did, there was sort of an awkward pause in the conversation, I can still see it vividly. And it was in that moment I knew that I had feelings for him.

It was this giant tidal wave of emotion, and I immediately felt self conscious – sure that it was written all over my face. At the time I don't think Garrett even noticed it, but in hindsight I am surprised that I even kept myself speaking in coherent sentences. I don’t wear those pants at all anymore because they are covered in coffee stains and not to mention kind of out of style, but every time I clean out my closet I can’t bring myself to throw them out because they absolutely remind me of that moment when I knew. That moment of realization that all of my self righteous ignoring and immature behavior had really just boiled down to that elementary school style of showing affection – be mean to the ones you truly love.

I wrestled with that epiphany for a while and put it in the back of my mind. As I realized what a jerk I had been and amended that behavior, we slowly became better friends (there's a shocker) and piece by piece we told each other our stories over shared pitchers of Newcastle, and long phone calls that didn't end until one of us fell asleep. We exchanged CDs with each other, and began a tradition of doing pub trivia at Streets of London every Sunday night with a few of our other co-workers. Now, as a fully corporate Monday thru Friday 9 to 5-er, I can tell you with one hundred percent certainty that I have never looked forward to a Sunday night with such anticipation as I did during that time in my life.

The best part of our newfound friendship was that on top of Garrett being a wonderful guy that I was loving to get to know, he was also my coworker (which, hello! meant I got to see him ALL THAT MUCH MORE). A few mornings per week he would be the first face I saw at 5am when we would roll into Lyon Village with our sleepy faces on and claim our regular parking spots. Those mornings are some my clearest and fondest memories of that time – the days when I got up a little bit earlier to plan my outfit and used just a little extra anticipatory Cool Mint Listerine.

I can see those days in my mind still– how on the outside they must have looked like dark, foggy, winter mornings so full of routine when the rest of Sacramento was still asleep -- but on the inside it was actually toasty warm, we were drinking espresso, cracking inside jokes, and accidentally brushing arms while making drinks. The intimacy was palpable and we built a relationship over coffee beans that plays over and over in my head to a soundtrack of Radiohead, Stars, Muse, and The Arcade Fire. To this day when I hear Muse's "Endlessly" it makes my heart beat just a little bit quicker in remembrance of that time.

But this phase in our relationship did ultimately cause a problem of its own. Not really dating, but having a relationship that didn't really qualify as being "just friends" meant we were in limbo-- and this went on for a LONG time. For OVER A YEAR! And let me tell you, for a high strung gal like me who is always trying to take action in her life– that limbo phase ate me up inside. In my mind it all made sense-- Boy: check, Great Chemistry: check, Butterflies: check, Shared Values: check – the potential was amazing and every day that it wasn’t being realized it began to irritate me more and more. All this philosophizing about life and agreeing about relationship standards-- all the laughing and having fun and the late night phone calls just weren't working for me without a label (I know, I’m a total spaz – spare your comments, I’m totally aware). BUT I WANTED A TITLE DAMNIT! I was an English major, I liked definitions, words that identified things. Words, to me, brought clarity, and I wanted it settled in my mind already. I wanted to know what we were doing, where we were going, and I definitely wanted that fairytale exclamation that Garrett had loved me this whole time-- you know, confessed preferably in some romantic, grandiose fashion

Ha!

Unfortunately that wasn’t exactly how we came to be. The beginning of my relationship with Garrett was wrought with its own construction delays...

Story Continued here

November 14, 2007

Three Cheers for Girls Night!

I've been jonesing for some girl time this week and tonight really quenched that thirst:

6 pm - meet Garrett for tea over at Peet's just to check in. With his mom in town our visits have been few and far between, but we spent a little time together just to say hi and chit chat face to face. Even though he's a boy, that quick visit was a great way to start my evening.

7 pm - Talked to my mom...for an HOUR! About what, you ask? Who Cares? It didn't matter that I had already talked to her twice today -- we somehow mustered up 60 minutes worth of stuff to gab about.

Put on Pajamas.

8 pm - Watched America's Next Top Model with the roommate and made bitchy comments about how stupid all the models are. (Bianca is such a hater -- and dang that photo shoot made her look like Dennis Rodman!) Threw in a few sarcastic remarks about Tyra Banks just for good measure.

Ate Dessert.

9 pm - Watched tonight's episode of Oprah aptly titled "The Greatest Love Story Ever." In tears after 10 minutes. Holy hell, have you heard this story? It was just about the sweetest love story every!! I dare you not to cry!

Now we are just waiting for the Season Premiere of Project Runway, which I'll be watching right before I curl up into bed with the ubiquitous Eat, Pray, Love.

What can I say, some nights are Ladies' Nights, and tonight there are no boys allowed.

November 13, 2007

Asked and Answered

So if you refer to yesterday's wishlist, it included getting out of jury duty and having a day off of work so that I could just read and relax. Although I also did a ridiculous amount of errands, today was spent mostly reading, killing time on the internet, enjoying tea and pancakes as I watched the View (shut up!) in my pajamas -- and this was all because I ended up NOT have to go to jury duty today. CAN YOU BELIEVE THAT? Is that a 24 hour turnaround or what? Hallelujah!

If you must know the truth though, the real reason I got out of jury duty was because I didn't read the form correctly and I actually just have to call tomorrow night to see if I have it on Thursday. So all this time worrying about "Tuesday's Jury Duty" has kind of been for naught. Huh. So sue me, I guess I'm a bit of a rookie at this. But while we're talking about I was wondering -- if you have it in your heart, will you cross your fingers for me tomorrow that I get the word that I don't have to go back on the following day-- because frankly, I got the sitting-around-doing-nothing out of my system today and I certainly don't feel like doing it again on Thursday at a Courthouse. I mean, I hear down there that there is no wi-fi OR pancakes. And that would be a travesty!

November 12, 2007

10 Things I Want Right Now

1. You to forgive me. So, apparently my smug Next Iron Chef prediction yesterday was incorrect, and actually Michael Symon won. Humph!
2. A Doctor's Note to get me out of jury duty tomorrow.
3. My pride back. I just fell down the stairs at my work and totally clawed up my hand. There was someone at the bottom watching. Awesome.
4. A home cooked meal. I went home for lunch only to find that basically my fridge is empty except for condiments, one Corona, old orange juice, mascarpone cheese, and a ball of pizza dough from Trader Joe's.
5. A massage. See #3.
6. A day off to lay in bed and read. Although if you see #2, it is sort of a happy medium. I won't be in bed, but I will be armed with reading material, and most likely hours of free time.
7. A new car. It's not what you think. I'm not that spoiled. My car was totalled on August 9th and I have yet to replace it. I've been lucky enough to have Garrett loan me his second car (don't worry, he's not spoiled either, it's a hand me down 1991 Toyota Cressida that belonged to his granmother). This has worked swimmingly until this weekend when the radiator started acting up. It's old, it's allowed to, but I just hate that feeling of unreliable transportation and think it is probably time to start looking for cars seriously.
8. A day off work.
9. Grey's Anatomy to be on 7 nights a week.
10. The heater in my apartment to start working.


I dont know, is that too much to ask?

November 11, 2007

November 10, 2007

I can't see.

Dear Internet,

I can't see myself blogging today. I'm not even sleeping at my own house, and the computer I am on at the moment uses dial up internet. Extensive blogging might blow it up.

Until Sunday...

November 09, 2007

Doing My Homework

I'm working from home today for a multitude of reasons. The most pressing reason is that I have like 500 things to take care of before Monday, and my office is full of other obligations that ironically enough can sometimes keep me from doing actual work. My boss is awesome and was like "hey, do it at home, in your pajamas, drinking some tea." Awesome, right? Home is supposed to hold less distractions, less stress. Honestly though, I am feeling totally possessed right now by the idea of the laundry I could be doing, the kichen I could be cleaning, um...the blog I should be writing -- yeah. This is harder than it looks. Wait, hang on a sec, I think I just stepped on a crumb, I should go grab the vaccuum.

IT'S SO HARD.

It's funny how something that seems like such a relief -- "working from home" (sigh)-- is actually proving to be more difficult that keeping chatty coworkers at bay. Advice?

November 08, 2007

The Devil is in the Details: A Photo Essay

Before we get started, I feel obligated to state that I do not think I am the most fashionable person on the planet. In fact, I am quite sure I would be laughed right out of Rachel Zoe's office due to the fact that just about my entire wardrobe consists of cheap and easily mixable pieces -- namely GAP favorite tees, jeans, and sometimes the occasional colorful item from oh, I don't know Target. For the record though, most of the time I think I look relatively put together and it has mainly to do with how I accessorize my bare bones wardrobe. In my humble opinion, the quickest and easiest way to spice up any plain jane ensemble is in the details, and the following are some tactics I employ on a regular basis. For Example:

1. Heels

I double dog dare to you to wear heels and not feel pretty. Okay so if you have a hard time walking in them and fall on your face, you may not feel so pretty -- That one I'll give you. But seriously it only takes a little practice, start with a kitten heel and move up from there and you will immediately have a foolproof way of making even jeans and a t shirt look classy.

2. Cute Flats

Because hammer toes ARE NOT sexy. Wanting to feel pretty and spending everyday in heels is like wanting to look young and laying in a tanning bed on your lunch hour. No bueno in the long run, ya know? But that doesn't mean you can't rock the flats, or quite frankly your creamsicle complexion -- the world has no shortage of leather faced girls! Cute, flat shoes can add some sugar and spice to even the simplest attire.

3. Flip Flops

Oops! Wait, scratch that. I'm pretty sure flip flops never "make" the outfit, but who doesn't love them? What did I ever do before Old Navy and their Rainbow Brite wall of $3 flip flops?

4. Baubles

Haha! I just like that word. I don't actually have any, really, but I do like a big fun necklace every once in a while. If nothing else, 9 times out of 10 they are a great conversation piece, and nobody notices that underneath it is that plain black favorite tee again.

5. Scarves!

Silk scarves, wool scarves, it doesn't really matter. They are all absolutely fabulous and worthy of wear whenever you have a chance. I love to tie them on my neck, on my purse, on my head -- the possibilities are kind of endless, no?

And last but not least, if nothing else works and you must call in for reinforcement, you should always have an option or two for going incognito:



It beats wearing a paper bag over your head, right?

November 07, 2007

Dear Target,

Ok seriously, the fact that Christmas is around the corner is totally blowing my mind. You see Target, every year come the first of November, all of a sudden the greedy "I want" monster that usually lives dormantly inside of me is fiercly unleashed. Everywhere I go, there are multitudes of things I just want to run off with. And everything feels like a MUST HAVE. I need that turtleneck, I must hang that wreath, that purse would be perfect for the holiday party, wouldn't those new plates make that dinner taste better? You don't help with this my dear friend, you are making me lose all sense of reason.

Don't get me wrong, Target, I've always liked you, but seriously, during this time of year you feel like a compulsion that I am working daily to fight off. I need a remedy. Maybe there's there a vitamin for that? Ooooooh, might you perhaps sell it in your Toiletries Section? Hey- wait- No! Damn you Target! There you go again, luring me in with your sensible products. You are like the super strength sickness that has become immune to all antibiotics. I mean how am I supposed to be able to my q tips and toothpaste in peace when I have to see stuff like this lying around:



Seriously. I want that kitchen. I NEED that kitchen. But look, its not even really a kitchen! Your marketing folks are geniuses, you know. I mean really, just randomly placed appliances sitting on a table? Yet I still feel an immediate lust for it. It doesn't matter that I have almost everything there already because I don't have them in RED! And don't even get me started on your adorable TV ads with their catchy songs. ARGH!

Look, I'm trying to be nice here. I don't want this to get all ugly or anything, all I'm saying is -- quit reading my diary, ok? Oh yeah, and one last thing -- did I hear correctly that your cover charge is going from $50 per visit to $150? Get back to me, could ya?

XOXOXO,
Holly

November 06, 2007

Does YOUR Nightstand Do This?


Mine seems to multiply when I'm not looking. It starts off with the book I'm reading, then I get an idea about what I want to read next, then I get a recommendation...and then it all goes downhill.

Current Read: Eat Pray Love by Elizabeth Gilbert. Quick and easy, I am burning through this one at every opportunity. Too bad I picked it up in the middle of reading our BookClub book.
BookClub Selection: The Emperor's Children by Claire Messud. I'm only about 60 pages into this one and I have to have it read by the 19th.
Beach Read Without A Beach: Make Him Look Good by Alisa Valdez Rodriguez. My cousin gave this to me in August at The Treehouse -- it looks fun and sugary, but still unopened.
Rest In Peace: IV by Chuck Klosterman. One of my favorite writers, this is a collection of unabridged magazine articles such as SPIN spanning the past decade. He's hysterical and I read about half of this at Pajaro Dunes and it has now apparently come to my nightstand to die.
On Loan From My Aunt: Grace (Eventually) Thoughts On Faith by Anne Lamott. Graciously given to me by my Aunt (hi Elizabeth!) who is one of the only members of my family who loves Lamott as much as I do. Yup, still sitting there.
Too Pretty To Read: Glamorama by Bret Easton Ellis (who I LOVE!) But sunshine and summer don't always mix with an Ellis novel. This one had to wait.
Overhyped Now Undermotivated: Never Let Me Go by Kazuo Ishiguro. Garrett bought this for me at 1/2 Price Books because it has been on my "To Read" List for ages. Before I had a chance, my roommate read it and said it was only alright. HUMPH!
Less Than 300 Pages, No Excuse: Old School by Tobias Wolff. Enough said.
Pretty Cover But Needs to be Retitled: How To Be Good by Nick Hornby. Too bad it's not called How to Be Good at Reading the books that are multiplying like gremlins on your nightstand. Maybe then I would be further along.

So...What are you reading?

November 05, 2007

Whining and Dining

Though I'm not usually one to frequent your your run of the mill franchised dining establishments, on Friday night Garrett and ended up at Mimi's Cafe. Shut up! Don't judge me, their French Onion Soup kicks ass and means I don't have to spend hours in my kitchen in tears slicing onions and then caramelizing them (although I did get new soup crocs for my birthday and I am dying to use them!) Um, Quick sidebar: I'm pretty sure all of my birthday presents involved food or the preparation of food, is that weird? Wait, don't answer that.
Anyway, back to Mimi's...Our meal was only ok, but I have to say the environment was what was most entertaining and almost a bit Twilight Zone-ish. Did you know that the only people who go to Mimi's on a Friday night are members of the Red Hat Society and men and women who are meeting their Internet Blind Dates for the first time? Well it's true. And although the last one made for great people watching, I can't say I'm dying to go back there on a Friday night -- oh and did I mention the parking lot smelled like sewage? Yeah, so if you are interested in that, you should really head over there pronto. Me, not so much.

On the other hand I am quite interested in eating at the following three places, in no particular order. Not only do I have coupons but they're NEW! And who doesn't love new restaurants? Well okay, not all of them are new, but at least new to downtown:

*Chicago Fire - okay so it's not new -- anyone who has had a drunken night at Powerhouse Pub in Folsom knows of the delights that are Chicago Fire Pizza, but now instead of the trek to Folsom, there is one on J Street. Yay. That one is a bit more in walking distance, if you know what I mean. On a totally unrelated note, did you know that you can have the World Famous Giorodano's Pizza in Chicago overnight you a pizza in dry ice for only $16? My God, I love the internet!

*Stonegrill and Bar - Okay, so I pretty much HEART Nishiki Sushi, and since they are the masterminds behind this restaurant, I am definitely interested in giving it a chance. And cooking on stones? Ok, maybe. That could be fun. But did I mention I have a coupon for a free entree? FREE. DINNER. That did it. Now I'm definitely interested in giving it a chance. The weird part though, check out the "menu" section on their website. I hope they're using that term loosely...Pretty informative, eh? And no I'm not from Canada, so shut up.

*Three Monkeys - The idea that they serve Modern American Cuisine, Sushi, and have a "Saloon" has sort of piqued my curiosity. How are the owners going to get these ideas together under one roof succesfully? And do they hang out with Guy Fieri eating Rock-n-Roll Sushi/BBQ on the weekends? Because I think we all know how that turned out...

Any other must-eats that you recommend?

November 04, 2007

Because Thank You Notes Show Gratitude

Dear Universe,

Thank you so much for recently making all of my Le Creuset dreams come true. I wanted you to know how much I appreciated you understanding that enameled stoneware and I go together like ham and eggs, spic and span, um...gin and tonic? Right...so anyway, like I was saying -- Thanks! I wouldn't want you to think I wasn't grateful. Because I'm very grateful, I have had so much fun with that pot and plan on many more future shenanigans just me and my dutch oven. Did you like the picture I posted? Yeah, pretty neat huh, all shiny and red and stuff. Well, since you asked, I took that with the digital camera I currently have. It's cute, and small, and fits in my purse and stuff, but sometimes it takes me 5 or 6 attempts for me to get the shot I'm trying to get. It's not the camera's fault, I mean it has proved to be quite the companion over the years while I was learning to docuement my life digitally. But it's nothing like, oh...I don't know...this guy:


Have you heard of him? Yeah he's supposed to be pretty cool. And I was just thinking that if you have one hanging around, that needs a new home -- I mean, I'm nice, and I like pictures you know. So, uh, it's just something to keep in mind.

I'm just saying...

November 03, 2007

The Art of the Give and Take

Have you seen the people who lurk in the video game aisles in Best Buy? Well today that was me, and not really because I'm a gamer or anything. Wait a minute, did I just say "gamer"? I don't know where that came from because I'm fairly certain that I've never said that word aloud. Hmmmm. Anyway, so Garrett was looking for something specific (sorry I'm outing your video game habit baby) and so lucky for me I got to hang around with people who ya know, might potentially be looking to spend their time playing things called Alien Disco Safari and whatnot.


They're an interesting group. (*Note: Just to clarify Garrett wasn't there to buy Alien Disco Safari, but I totally made him take a picture with it because it was so ridiculous. In the middle of Best Buy. You'd love me too if I was your girlfriend.)

So afterwards just because I was trying to make up for taking random photos in the video game section, I also happily headed over in the Sci Fi/Horror section of DVDs. (It was there that I made the connection that people who play things Alien Disco Safari also seem to have a hankering for movies that involve aliens as well. Hmmm...what does it all mean?) So I think it goes without saying that I was slightly out of my element, but I was still enjoying myself because I was in such good company. The whole shopping trip, though not exactly my cup of tea, was still a major blast because Garrett was so enthralled. And do you know, lo and behold, the Universe rewarded me...
You see, afterwards, after all the hob nobbing with Halo Freaks, Yoda fans, the occasional person who actually knows the difference between Blue Ray and HD DVD and has a vested interest in which company comes out on top -- do you know what I go to do? I got to traipse around Old Navy looking at clothes and shoes and crappy plastic headbands and metallic clutches and shruggy off the shoulder sweaters made out of wool (which really, do those make sense to anyone?) -- and the entire time Garrett followed me, holding my crap, encouraging my purchases, and all the while telling me that I looked cute. And at the end -- at the end of my little shopping excursion -- HE BOUGHT ME SHOES!!! Super Incredibly Cute shoes that I promptly put on when we left the store. I mean seriously, could a Saturday afternoon end any better.


How did I get so lucky?

November 02, 2007

Wishful Thinking - Rewarded!

I sent a little love letter to the Universe around this time last year via the blogosphere stating that All I Really Wanted was a Le Creuset Dutch Oven that was shiny and sparkly and new. Well the Universe sure doesn't have a 24 hour turnaround, but fortunately for me I have a pretty stellar boyfriend who took the hint (or perhaps just couldn't take the constant ooh-ing and aah-ing Every Single Time we passed one) and look what showed up at my house for my birthday:


Don't you just want to kiss it? I wanted to kiss it! In truth, my love for it was so intense that I wanted to take it out of the box immediately and curl up with it and whisper sweet nothings, but I read once somewhere that enameled stoneware doesn't really like to cuddle, so instead I made soup! Delicious soup, as it were, which by the way was also made possible in part due to the other fabulous birthday gift I received.

All in all I'm starting to think this Love Letter thing might work. And I definitely know it's going to be a good Winter!

November 01, 2007

Just Say the Word....

There is a gentleman who works in the cafeteria/Starbucks at my office who looks a bit like Tone Loc. So much so that almost every morning when I see him I inevitably get some terrible song like "Funky Cold Medina" in my head for at least 15 minutes afterward. So this morning I am waiting in line to order my usual latte (shame on me) and he busts out with an impromptu version of Phil Collins' "Sussudio" and honestly it brightened up my whole morning. I mean I didn't even have to start playing mindless Fergie songs on loop in my head just to stop the singing of "Wild Thing" under my breath -- which mind you, is probably not the most appropriate utterance while walking through the hallways at my place of employment.

But as I was walking back to my desk I kept wondering to myself, what in the hell does Sussudio mean? I mean seriously, is that even a word? Well hallelujah! internet, I just googled that exact question (complete with punctuation, thank you very much) and found this. I mean really, who knew? Did you? If so, kudos my friend, you are smarter than me. I bet you also knew that Falco died in a helicopter crash in the Dominican Republic, didn't you, you smug little shit? If not though, feel free to thank me later when you are on Who Wants to be a Millionaire? and that is the million dollar question and Regis or Meredith Viera or whoever hosts that god awful show now asks you and you are able respond with zeal! Or at least call me so I can Tivo it, ok?

October 30, 2007

Til Death (or December) Do Us Part

Enough with the wedding posts, right?

Actually this has nothing to do with the impending nuptials of anyone I know; however, it does have to do with a big commitment I'm making. That's right, for all of you blog nerds out there (hi! how's it goin?) November is NaBloPoMo! and I'm going to do it. I missed out on it last year because - well, I was lazy. This year I'm still lazy, but I also figure that I started this blog to write, right? (ha ha -- write, right?-- see what I did there? I'm just oozing with this kind of repressed wit that only a silly Blog-Posting challenge can relieve!)

So this is me committing right here, right now that I will post everyday for the month of November. Every Day. Yup, one post a day. That's right. Hang on a sec. What? Shit! Every SINGLE day? Really? What if I forget? What if my day is boring? I can't seem to catch my breath -- hang on while I grab. a. paper. bag....

Oh My God.

So yeah, I'm a little freaked out, and sort of feel like I'm making a lifetime commitment right now. Since I'm used to posting a few times a month MAX, posting every day is going to be quite a change, but we'll see how it goes. I figure I'll just start oversharing until y'all tell me to stop. (Y'ALL????? no idea where that came from.) It'll be great -- I'll tell you about my favorite deoderant, why I think the caged bird sings, and all the riveting things I do when I'm not working like purchasing nacho cheese and counting the hairs on my arms. Stuff like that. It'll rock!

You excited?

October 16, 2007

Because God is watching...

While getting ready for Lisa and Matt's wedding this past Saturday:

Holly - So what are you going to wear tonight?

Garrett - Well, is it a religious ceremony?

Holly - Yeah.

Garrett - Damnit! I guess I have to wear a tie.

And thus, he did...
Lisa & Matt's Wedding
Please excuse the fact that my neck has disappeared. I think it is on Holiday somewhere in the South of France.

October 10, 2007

Top 10 Confessions of a Trashaholic

So I totally just stole this post idea about confessing your trashy habits from MegFowler.com because it is BRILLIANT! But now that I think about it, that actually might be kind of trashy in itself. (The complicated rules and regulations of the vast blogosphere are still new to me - maybe if you stop by her site and say hi, I will somehow appear less trashy. Help me out here.) Actually, how I even found that blog is a still kind of hazy, but it is hysterical, and she might like Wham! as much as I do, so check her out. So, clearly I could probably go on for days about my own trashy tendencies, but (for now) I will keep it to ten.

1. My favorite hangover breakfast is a McDonald's McGriddle with Sausage, a hashbrown, and a Large Diet Coke.
2. I own at least one cd by all the following artists: Michael Bolton, Kenny G, Yanni, and Wilson Phillips.
3. Sometimes when I clean my house, I do run throughs of my old dance routines from when I was like 9 (yes! I can still remember some. Especially the one to "Chantilly Lace.") Wow...that sentence was kind of a punctuation mindf*ck, that I am too lazy to correct.
4. In the bathroom at work yesterday I noticed a hole in the forearm of my sweater (boo!). So I promptly went back to my desk and STAPLED it closed.
5. I have, on more than one occasion, eaten canned frosting for dinner
6. I know the words to more than 5 Too $hort songs
7. I'm secretly planning a new iPod playlist that is comprised completely of songs by ex-boy-band stars pursuing a solo career. I'm doing this solely so I can download Jordan Knight's "Give it to You."
8. I worked at Peet's Coffee for more than 6 years preaching quality and snobbery, yet I drank a Starbucks latte yesterday. And the day before that. And the day before that.
9. This morning I sang along while the radio blared Billy Joel's "Piano Man". Right as I was rolling in to the parking garage, they played "You Give Love a Bad Name" and for a moment, I felt like all the planets were aligned
10. I want the new Britney Spears album

October 08, 2007

What's Not to Love?

One thing that I truly love doing is planning dinner. You will never hear me sitting at work complaining that I have to go home and cook. It's my release! I absolutely love reading cookbooks, writing shopping lists, and there's nothing I love more than leisurely making my way up and down every aisle at the grocery store with marked anticipation for the meal to come. Afterwards I always go home, reorganize the refrigerator, make a giant mess in the kitchen, and then I wait. I simmer, I steep, and all the while my house is fragrant and warm and I'm relaxed. I think that is part of the reason that I love Fall so much -- its very conducive to curling up on the couch with a good book while a big pot of soup simmers on the stove. Or taking a mid day nap while a roast cooks in the oven smothered in garlic and peppercorns while red potatoes and root vegetables get golden brown. Hot sun and sand are nice, but they've got nothing on Autumn. Who can resist:

Scarves
- I have a drawer full in whimsical patterns from cashmere to wool. The perfect remedy to brighten any outfit.

Down Comforters
- I love to fall asleep in a chilly bedroom knowing that underneath my duvet is a cozy paradise

Snow
- makes everything feel cleaner

Apple Hill
- wineries and pumpkins and caramel apple pie!

Spiced Pumpkin Soup with Chives - just trust me, YOU SHOULD MAKE IT.

Red Leaves
- Garrett's house has been undergoing an extreme home make, including the gutting of the front and back yard. The only thing staying is a giant tree in the backyard that has the most beautiful leaves. It's gorgeous to wake up to.

The smell of Fireplace
- the only perk of my tiny downtown apartment (ok besides being walking distance from some pretty fun bars) is the fireplace! There's something comforting about the smell of duraflames.

Hot Cocoa on the couch
- No whipped cream, no marshmallows, just extra chocolate!

Reading in bed
- Ok really, I can do this in any season -- but when it is freezing cold and overcast outside, it just feels SO RIGHT.

Waking up in the middle of the night and hearing rain
- It's almost as good as a lullaby

Wooly Coats with lots of buttons
- In black! In Red! In Cream! I think this year I even need a a brown or green.

Striped Socks - Because even if you are the only one who knows you are wearing them, they are worth smiling about.

Mulled Cider steeping in the crock pot
- a house filled with scent of comfort

Fall TV
- New shows to get addicted to, Old shows that are brought back, Water cooler conversation.

So seriously, HOW CAN YOU NOT LOVE THIS SEASON?????

October 07, 2007

Dear Internet,

Why has no one ever invented a suitcase that unpacks itself?

And while I'm at it, why is it that I have to pack the same amount of toiletries to go out of town for one night as I do for 7 nights?

It just doesn't seem right to me.

XOXO

Holly

October 06, 2007

Girls Gone Wild: The PG-13 version

Heading up to South Lake this afternoon for Lisa's bachelorette party which I was totally looking forward to until I just heard on the news that it is 28 degrees up there! Um, its like almost 11am...really? Only 28 degrees? I'm thinking I'm going to have to pick out a new outfit for this evening and maybe bring a coat. Actually the thought of busting out a cute coat is kind of exciting, but then if you are out and about you always have to think about checking it and remembering it at the end of the night.

It's funny, when I was picking out something to wear tonight I realized that although I have a ton of cute clothes in my closet, my go-to "going out" outfits have really changed since, you know, acquiring a boyfriend and all. Not that I ever harnessed my inner skank that regularly or anything, but my night out wardrobe has definitely evolved. As a matter of fact, one of the initial outfit options that I was excited about wearing for tonight's festivities involved pearls. Seriously, PEARLS! (I promise it was still incredibly cute, but c'mon, pearls?) Count how many girls you see in Mikuni wearing pearls the next time you are there on a Friday night. Ha! Actually, scratch that, because then you would one the type of person who goes to Mikuni on a Friday night, and please, tell me you're not? Pretty Please?

I'm coming to realize that I definitely don't miss the days of hitting up the bars with friends gussied up and on the prowl. (Yes, I did just say gussied up. OK and On the Prowl, but you know what I meant!) Maybe it's because I am in a relationship, maybe its because I'm about to turn 29, but it surely doesn't mean I have forgotten how to have a good time. I'm definitely relieved that tonight there will not be strippers involved...I always hate that awkward grossness that goes along with these types of events when they involve strippers. You know, when you have look the other way and cross your fingers you are blending in with the wall, just so some oily stranger doesn't demand to lick whipped cream off some part of your body while a room full of screaming drunk people watch? ICK! So it's awesome that tonight will just officially be a Girls' Night Out with some ladies I dig. It's been a while, and I am thoroughly looking forward to it.

Cheers!

October 05, 2007

Things I've done besides blogging over the last 3 months

*Received a promotion
*Began new job which is slightly more labor intensive
*Taught a 16 week class (5 days a week) to folks who are new to insurance
*Became an expert on Facilitating Webinars
*Got in a car accident which totalled my car conveniently on the day I was supposed to leave on a road trip (not my fault, for the record!)
*Drank a lot of wine
*Hung out with 19 members of my family in a 2 bedroom/1.5 bathroom cabin for 3 days (by far the highlight of my summer!)
*Drank some more wine
*Watched Tania and Sean (finally) get married! So cute.
*Spent 4 days in a beach house at Pajaro Dunes with fun friends
*Helped build a Habitat for Humanity house
*Ditched my Company Picnic
*Attended Garrett's (how's that fair?)
*Celebrated my cute cousin Jim's 30th birthday with 75 of his closest friends and family, a margarita machine, and a taco truck parked in the driveway
*Toasted my darling cousin Kelly's 30th birthday on Labor Day over some ridiculously delicious Lemon Raspberry cake that was, frankly, unforgetable
*Realized that I am the next cousin to turn 30.
*Cringed
*Watched the ENTIRE last season of Grey's Anatomy in under 2 weeks because I'm a loser
*Started a bookclub
*Helped plan the PR for my first Junior League Event
*Let Garrett move in since his house is undergoing an Extreme Home Makeover
*Realized just how small my apartment is
*Realized just how NOT on schedule home renovations usually go
*Slept a bit

This weekend has me attending Lisa's Bachelorette Party in South Lake Tahoe and next weekend is the actual wedding -- conveniently scheduled on the day before my 29th birthday (haha). I still have not purchased a new car, though I'm looking, and I still haven't fully exhaled. I'm thinking I will spend my birthday napping, because after recapping the last 3 months I feel EXHAUSTED -- but grateful that my life is so abundant!

July 13, 2007

Coming Attractions

Shiny Happy People originally uploaded by Hollywouldifshecould.


So I realize I'm basically a total hack. I went to Humboldt like 2 months ago and promised wonderful pictures and fabulous stories of my vacation, and what did you get....Nothing! What a jerk. Well this weekend I'm hoping to get really nerdy and I've set aside some "blogging time" so I will definitely do some Humboldt highlights as well as an update or two...maybe some pics...so I give you this, my friends...a pic in Humboldt of our smiling faces, because SERIOUSLY it was such a great time. I'm also, coincidentally testing my very novice flickr skills in the meantime, so we'll see how that works...

until then.

June 27, 2007

Brevity

One-Word Answers Only

1. Where is your cell phone? Desk
2. Relationship? utopia
3. Your hair? ponytail
4. Work? Training
5. Your sister? Non-existent
6. Your favorite thing? challenge
7. Your dream last night? work :(
8. Your favorite drink? coffee
9. Your dream car? Shiny
10. The room you're in? Office
11. Your shoes? tall
12. Your fears? overcome
13. What do you want to be in 10 years? relaxed
14. Who did you hang out with this weekend? Family
15. What are you not good at? silence
16. Muffin? Scone
17. Wish list item? patience
18. Where you grew up? Fremont
19. The last thing you did? blogged
20. What are you wearing? black
21. What are you not wearing? socks
22. Your pet? none
23. Your computer? cute
24. Your life? rich
25. Your mood? sleepy
26. Missing? irresponsibility
27. What are you thinking about? errands
28. Your car? Honda
29. Your kitchen? small
30. Your summer? anticipating
31. Your favorite color? black
32. Last time you laughed? yesterday
33. Last time you cried? wedding
34. School? studious
35. Love? wonderful

June 12, 2007

We'll Be Falling in Love, to the Rhythm of a Steel Drum Band

Holly: Oh, so I meant to tell you, Katie and Esty's wedding this weekend is cocktail attire.

Garrett: Cocktail attire? So I get to show up in shorts and a Hawaiian shirt and juggle bottles of vodka while you follow me around with a boombox playing 'Kokomo'? SWEET!

May 29, 2007

I Was So Close to Hell, I Could See Sparks!

Yeeeeeeeeehaw!!! I'm so glad to be back!

I spent the better portion of last week out of town for work, and by out of town, I mean out of touch. Literally. I spent 4 days discovering what the greater Northern Nevada area had to offer and I have come to the conclusion that it includes alot of desert, rocks, radio stations that play the karaoke version of songs, and plenty of franchised dining establishments . And did you know in Nevada semi-trucks can pull more than one trailer? Sweet Jesus there is nothing scarier than being passed on the 395 when you are going 70 mph by a semi that is pulling like 3 giant trailers!!!! They have like 72-wheelers up there...sheesh!

Anyway, along with discovering ALL. THE. SIGHTS. that Reno, Carson City, Garndernville, Minden, Fallon, Fernley, Yerington, and Sparks had to offer, I discovered a fellow Woodcock. He was a nice gentlement who coincidentally worked down at Sips, the coffee shop inside the Silver Legacy. Actually the first morning I was there I couldn't really sleep so I stumbled groggily down to the espresso bar in my sweats and ponytail at like 5am, and halfway through the transaction the gentleman who was helping me looked up very seriously and said "Whoa! That's amazing!" and then he just kept staring at me. Actually, you know what, now that I am replaying it in my mind I think had I been more awake I might have been creeped out a little, but since I was still on auto-pilot I just said "huh?" and continued to look very perplexed. He responded in a somewhat hypnotic voice saying, "Your name is my name. My name is your name." And it took me a minute to get it, lucky for me he just kept repeating it....kind of like the way that Grover does on Sesame Street when he is explaining "Near" and "Far" but not quite so cartoon Louis Armstrong-ish, ya know? By the way I just stopped typing and did an impromptu google search in hopes of finding a You Tube clip of that skit for the sake of nostalgia, and not only did I not find it (I think I have finally stumbled upon the only thing thing that CAN'T be found on You Tube - boo!), but I also think I stumbled upon a very sick cross section of adult Grover fan-sites that are so seriously disturbing I almost deleted the entire reference.

Regardless, I'm getting off topic, the point of this story is that I met another Woodcock, and it was kind of cool -- and kind of weird all at the same time. Actually it wasn't that weird until he asked me if I was Mormon, to which I responded "Oh no, I dodged that bullet" and then immediately realized why it is that people shouldn't make jokes before they've had caffeine. But lucky for me he didn't hold it against me really, and for the next 3 days he treated me like we were family, which was kinda cool when you are on a lonely business trip. I mean it's isn't everyday that I meet another person who must have also been tortured with woodpecker jokes in his youth until his peers got old enough to start thinking pornographic jokes were even funnier, right?

May 17, 2007

You could always just say you feel sick...

I am constantly trying to talk to Garrett about the idea that language itself is a barrier when it comes to the way that all people communicate. Isn't that such a fascinating idea? I mean, what you say to me, may not be what you actually mean, and how I interpret it can be affected by the words you choose? HUH! That is such a fascinating idea to me! But I guess I sort of wore out my welcome philosophising about it, because now when I go off on a little tangents to Garrett, he gives me a cute smile and nod and says, "yeah, yeah, babe, I know. Its the 'barrier of language'." (In his defense, I practice my own smile and nod when he talks to me about the Fed).

Most of the time I'm pretty sure he thinks that my fascination with Structuralist philosophies and linguistics are totally over the top, and in all honesty I will be the first to admit that the amount of Saussure and Derrida that I have happily devoured while laying on my bed is not your mama's Danielle Steel -- but I can't help it -- I am fascinated by the ideas of how we derive meaning from language.

Now before you go thinking that I am a pompous idiot, and assume I am trying to spit you some amateur philosophy, let me assure you first that I don't spit (ew! gross!) and second that is totally not the point of this post. I mean, I read books with Hot Pink Covers all the time, and happily admit to doing so, so that should eliminate any smugness right there. Actually, the point of this post is that when you spend alot of time thinking about words, aside from really obliterating the possibility of having a normal social life, you can also have ALOT of fun! YAY! FUN! Repeat after me -- words are fun! Ok nevermind, I guess I'm just going to do my part to cliffs notes a little funny and common word slaughter (Ok, somebody call the dork police...it's getting dire in here).

For instance:

Did you know that the word nauseous is an adjective?
[adjective: a word describing a person, place, or thing (commonly know as a noun)].
Yes, that's right, NAUSEOUS is a descriptive word that means "causing nausea".

On the other hand, did you know that the word nauseated is a verb? [verb: a word expressing action or occurence] And when used without an object (don't worry about that part, I won't even elaborate), it means "to become affected with nausea".

So what does all this grammatic inundation mean to you, you say?
Well, its simple really. Anytime you say "I feel so nauseous right now" you are inadvertantly letting your conversational partner know that you are currently causing nausea. That's right, you are saying that YOU are making other people sick. Instead, my word obsession and I are going to suggest saying "I feel so nauseated right now," because this more clearly communicates the fact that you have become affected by a sick feeling.

Now, does anyone care about this besides myself and of course my dear friend Sarah (hi Sarah!) who has chatted with me about this fact on numerous occasions? Probably not. But I'm putting it out there for what it's worth, and to also give you the same smug chuckle that I get when I hear someone misusing it.

That's right, the next time your annoying co-worker (you know, the one who is always feigning illness and begging for sympathy or just being lazy) tells you they are "really nauseous" you can look at them empathetically and say "WOW, YOU REALLY ARE!"

May 15, 2007

Restaurant Rules

Whenever I go out to eat I try to follow a few simple rules, whether it is some fancy schmancy restaurant, or whether it's just the Olive Garden. Wait, who am I kidding, I don't eat at Olive Garden. Ok, Ok, whether it's fancy, or whether it's Hot Rods on a rowdy Friday night:

1. Order something you wouldn't make at home.
Now I don't religiously follow this, obviously, because I do cook a lot at home, but for the most part I think that if you have to go through the inconvenience of finding parking, waiting to be seated/waiting in line, and waiting to pay, I think the end result should be something fun, or new, or full of expensive ingredients I don't have in my pantry. I mean otherwise, really what's the point? Why go through all the hassle to pay someone else to chop your lettuce for you? Unless of course that lettuce is covered with Gorgonzola Vinaigrette from Jack's Urban Eats, which -- MY GOD -- can somebody get me that recipe? Mmm, it's delish!

2. Don't bite the hand that feeds you.
After working in a coffee shop for years, it never ceased to amaze me how rude people could be to those handling their food. Didn't they realize that the only thing standing in the way of their delicious handcrafted beverage, and a passable-but-seriously-tampered-with concoction that just looked liked a delicious handcrafted beverage, was the way they treated the person behind the counter? I'm not saying everyone should have kissed my feet, but it sort of went without saying that if you were a jerk, instead of typing your name above your drink when I took your order, I typed BGD (Bitch Gets Decaf). Here's your $4 afternoon pick me up, dick! (said with a smile, of course). Now certainly, everyone is not as spiteful as I was after working in retail for almost 9 years, but just in case, I'm quite nice to my food server, even if my order does come out wrong.

3. Oh yeah, and be a good tipper. Enough Said.

4. If I hate it -- I give it one more chance -- then if I still hate it, I just don't go back.
But seriously, there is nothing worse than someone going off on a blanket tirade about how terrible some restaurant is when they have only been there one time. Maybe it was an off night? Chefs are human. Maybe you didn't order their best dish? Maybe their concept just isn't for you? But might I suggest trying it one more time, and seeing how it goes? If you continue to dislike it, fine. Go ahead and scratch that off your list of places to make a Friday night reservation. But for god's sake, whatever you do, don't keep going back there and reiterating to the wait staff how terrible everything they serve is everytime you go there, and how you hope it doesn't happen again this time. Ugh! I'm doing the full body eye roll right this minute. Maybe this is also residual baggage from working at Peet's for way too long, but as far as I'm concerned - if you don't like a restaurant -- DON'T GO THERE. I know, novel concept, eh?

So none of this is rocket science, I suppose, or really revolutionary in any way, but I got to thinking about it while reading this article by Ann Patchett that gives 7 Reasons the Food is Better at Home. I'm all for eating out, but I thought it was cute...and so true! Although unfortunately at my house, there is a man that jumps out of the pantry and offers me dessert when I'm already full. That must be why I still eat it, right?

Do you have any rules when you dine out?

May 11, 2007

Hot Shots

I almost don't even know where to begin.

Last night began in a most innocuous fashion. Garrett and I were getting together with Jeremy and Hilary to have some drinks and play some pool because, heck -- it was almost Friday -- which in my opinion demands a weekly celebration, and besides we always have so much damn fun with them! Do you have those kind of friends? You know, the ones who you could call on a Friday night if you wanted to have an evening of intelligent conversation over a glass of Cabernet, but who you could also call the following night and invite over to have a pitcher of PBR and spend the whole night telling fart jokes and listening to New Edition all the while waxing philosophical about American Idol? God, I love those kinds of friends! They're just so great! And Jeremy and Hilary seriously live up to that kinda hype, so consequently we force them to hang out with us as much as humanly possible.

(By the way, if you guys are reading this, sorry I just outed you guys for liking fart jokes. Or PBR. Whichever is more offensive.)

Anyway, a week or two earlier they had discovered this dive by their house that advertised pool and "entertainment", and since Garrett and I had just recently brushed up on our billiards at the Lost Coast Brewery last weekend, we thought it would be fun to exercise our mediocre pool skills, and of course our very above average shit talking skills. So we get to this place, and despite the fact that it is in a strip mall, and all patrons are required to screw in their own lightbulbs over the table if they want an illuminated game, it looked like it was going to be a pretty fun time. I mean they sold Hot Pockets and Costco Chicken Bakes at the snack bar, for god's sake, nothing says "classy" like meaty, cheesy, bready pouches of saturated fat -- frozen in single servings for your convenience.

So being that it was relatively early, it seemed we had our pick of the pool tables. Unfortunately though, we were informed that the table that we had chosen was unavailable because shortly it would be used as the karaoke stage. That's right, KARAOKE. STAGE. Ohmagod, this night was about to get even better. So Hilary and I blew a fiver at the juke box playing some clutch "oldies" like November Rain (how much do I miss Guns'n'Roses?) and some LL Cool J from his days of better judgment (LL, seriously? A duet with J.Lo? What were you thinking?) and we all just generally enjoyed each others company and the frosty beer mugs for a good hour. And then, dear reader, the craziness began.

So somewhere in that timespan, a young lady (and by the way I'm using that term loosely) arrived wearing quite the striking ensemble which consisted of a denim ultra-mini-skirt and a turquoise ruffley tube top. Now, as we all know it's getting hot out, and I realize that when this happens, inevitably the "night-out-on-the-town" outfits get smaller and smaller. That being said, I feel fairly safe asserting that if your gross body weight exceeds 400 lbs, a mini-skirt and tube combo is not the most flattering of options. I think you would agree with me, no? Now I'm not one to hate on the voluptuous figures, being that my own definitely doesn't qualify me for any Miss Fitness USA contests, but come on...use some common sense! Needless to say she was attracting quite a bit of attention, and I think she was kind of liking it. This only increased when she decided to kickoff the night of karaoke by doing her rendition of Adina Howard's vulgar 90s hit "Freak Like Me", to which the bartender promptly responded to by letting us know that it would take a lot more than "a roughneck brother" to satisfy her. Fret not though, because she immediately followed up this assertion of freakiness by escorting a gentleman friend (whose status as a "roughneck brother" had yet to be determined, for the record) into the single stall bathrooms right next to our pool table. And to think we were initially bummed that our first choice table was being turned into karaoke headquarters. Huh.

So while our lady and gentleman friends were busy in the loo doing -- well, whatever it is people do inside public bathrooms at pool halls that sell Hot Pockets -- the karaoke continued. We were treated to a cheeky rendition of the Commodores uber-smash "Night Shift", and something else fairly unmemorable before Hilary finally decided to get up and basically show everyone who was boss by singing "What a Feeling!". By this time, lady and gentleman had left the bathroom (and fairly quickly I might add, for what its worth) and were chasing each other around swearing. I wasn't really sure how to interpret that, except to maybe assume that their idea of a pre-party had involved prescription drugs mixed with some milder form of PCP, but at that point I was kind of bored with them and had moved onto being fascinated by the MIDGET. SINGING. JANIS. JOPLIN.

You think I'm joking.

I almost wish I was.

But alas, there she sang in all her 4 feet of glory, and it was at that point that I had a major realization. Up until that exact moment, it had never occured to me that a good karaoke singer must not only have the hard to find combination of drunken fearlessness, great pipes, and a lively stage presence -- but that on top of all that, a major factor that apparently lends itself to awe-inspiring performances (or not for that matter) is LITERACY! I mean really, who knew? It was a lightbulb moment for me, kinda like when I was 18 and went away to college and I realized that when you live alone and you leave dishes in the sink, no one does them for you. Profound, I tell you. So later on in the evening the midget again practiced her phonics skills to the beat of Bonnie Tyler's "Total Eclipse of the Heart", and while I would say that it was by far her best performance of the night, I wasn't quite comfortable betting that she could read the streets signs outside, or find her way home without a chaperone.

Aside from all the horrid singing, or rather the "kinda pitchy" vocals that would have made Randy Jackson shake his head and say "I don't know, dawg" we were treated to a few gems of the country persuation when a delightful young whippersnapper belted out Reba McIntyre's "The Night the Lights Went out in Georgia", but then she had to ruin it when she got up with all her drunk friends and sang AfroMan's "Because I Got High", which, although a revolutionary anthem for some segment of the population, I'm sure, is just kinda boring to watch drunk co-eds sing.

Meanwhile back at the bathroom, our lady and gentleman had reconvened. I think they were maybe going back there to hold hands and tell Bible stories or something, but they were rudely interupted by another woman opening the bathroom door that [shocker] they had forgotten to lock. I think they were right in the middle of talking about the serpent and the tree of knowledge, but I can't be sure. Unfortunately for our gentleman friend, his pants were sadly around his ankles, and something about the gust of fresh air had knocked some sense into our lady friend, and she was out the door. Slowly and lamely, the gentleman pulled up his pants and grabbed his belongings that he had temporarily been storing on the FLOOR OF THE PUBLIC BATHROOM -- and then quickly he rushed off to find his Princess Charming, who had run outside to answer a very pressing cell phone call and sip on a Smirnoff Raspberry Ice (give the girl a break, she was probably thirsty after all that "storytelling"). Oh, and did I mention that as he walked by, the gentleman accidentally dropped his boxer shorts right at Garrett's feet as he was taking a shot? I'd like to think he was leaving as a good luck charm, or as some cheer of male-billiard-solidarity, but alas I think I might have just been seeing the situation through rose colored glasses.

Basically the night was all around awesome. It was the kind of night you couldn't script, because no one would believe it actually happened. Especially at the end, when Jeremy ceremoniously sank the 8-ball at the exact moment that Slash's guitar riff ended "Welcome to the Jungle". Just too much fun! And I decided after last night, if every Thursday has the potential to be full of this much mid-week madness, I might just start acquiring a taste for Hot Pockets.

May 09, 2007

You Are What You Drink



I know, I know -- I'm an ass! :) You thought it was funny for a second though, right???

May 02, 2007

Hodgepodge

Don't you just love when that category comes up on Jeopardy? It just makes me feel excited like I have a chance. You know, don't you tally up the possibilities at the beginning of the show when Alex Trebek reads off all the category names? "British Literature"(check!) "Chemistry" (mmm...maybe) "Historical Figures" (I'm out) "U.S. Presidents" (shit!) "Crossword Clues 'L' " (check!) and the final category "Hodgepodge" (wooo hooo...millions of possibilities). No? You don't do that? Hmmm, embarrassed once again, am I. Whatever, well I just love it! And I love the word Hodgepodge. It's a good word. Say it -- Hodgepodge. It just sounds like fun, doesn't it? I like it almost as much as I like "Potent Potables" but that's probably an entirely seperate blog.

Anyway a few random updates:

First, I decided to save you from my whiny conclusions that I came up with while thinking about Kurt Vonnegut. I realize this makes me look like a lazy douche, telling you that I came up with some "deep thoughts", promising them for later, and then sweeping it under the rug only to talk briefly about grammar tees, but seriously, it just got me feeling kinda down -- so I veto'd the whole post. It looked alot like a very wordy version of "Hi self, don't be so hard on yourself. You are nice, self. You work hard, self. Enjoy your life. You have many things to be grateful for." And then it got list-y. It had a lot more melody from the world's smallest violin though, and I really do hate it when I get caught up in those feeling sorry for myself moments. It's boring.

Second, Garrett and I went on this crazy, amazing hike up in the Oroville area to Feather Falls. Sweet baby Jesus, that place was beautiful! Now, I'm not really a hiker, but I really wish I was. I so desperately want to be one of those people who goes out and enjoys nature and talks nonchalantly about how easy it is climb rocks, and eat worms, drink water from a rubber bladder (ick!), but alas I'm just really not. It's not that I don't like nature (I love it actually, although my sinuses may tell you a different story) I think it's that my choice of nature-to-love just usually tends to be that of beautiful beaches where I can relax (and perhaps consume a frosty beverage), snow covered mountains that I can see from the window of a quaint cabin while sitting fireside (of course while consuming minty-hot grasshoppers), or kicking back camping in the gorgeous redwoods of Northern California (roasting marshmallows and again consuming a frosty beverage). Basically I tend to enjoy the lazier aspects of the commune with nature. I like to observe nature, not necessarily run right out and get all covered in it!
Now that being said, I am also somewhat of a challenge seeker. My stubbornness definitely lends itself to seeking out things that I don't think I will be able to do in really any arena. I do this solely because I enjoy proving that little voice in my head wrong, and because even at the ripe age of 28 I'm still a fan of sticking my tongue out smugly. Even if only metaphorically. Hence, the Feather Falls adventure.

So Garrett has been wanting to get outside more, and we have both been looking for fun ways to get a little bit more exercise, so when I ran across this article in the Sac Bee, I thought this would be a perfect way to get outside, get a little exercise, and also it would be a great challenge since I'm not really "outdoorsy". I am coincidentally also not the world's most experienced hiker, so traversing about 9 miles of dirt on any given afternoon is just a little out of my comfort zone. BUT -- at the top of this cozy little hike appeared to be some pretty beautiful waterfalls -- or so the Sac Bee promised, so we went! And despite the fact that the Bee had a penchant for leaving out integral parts of the directions, we found it, and hiked up to the top, and WOW...it was totally worth it! So pretty! The waterfalls, of course, definitely not me when I got to the top. Whoa! Unless of course your version of pretty involves sweaty matted hair, and no makeup -- and you know what, I've seen some of those Vogue pictorals, so maybe on this day Andre Leon Talley would have thought I was pretty, but that's not the point. The point is, the view at the top was spectacular! And it was even spectacular going up and back. I took lots of pretty pictures, and I've been wanting to share, but my version of iPhoto has been behaving a little more dramatically than usual as of late, and I just haven't had the time to feed it some cookies, and rub its belly, and find out what the problem is. But let me tell you...when I do...Touche Vogue!

Thirdly, I'm going on a baby-vacay this weekend and I can't FREAKIN' wait! The fact that I have been juggling multiple projects at work, along with applying for a new position, along with trying to do my regular work, along with trying to, I don't know, HAVE A LIFE -- has caused me to feel a bit overextended. So I am delighted that Monday is Garrett's birthday, and we are taking a long weekend and heading up to the north coast. It is a trip with multiple agendas, but first and foremost we are just getting the heck outta dodge and celebrating! The second agenda is a bit of a sightseeing, nostalgic, somewhat emotional family history tour that I'm really excited to be sharing with Garrett. Alot of my dad's side of the family hails from (and still resides) up in Humboldt County, and last year, the whole gang took a trip up there for a little reunion or sorts. We stayed in Eureka, and enjoyed the town and saw the houses our family members lived in. We dined down by Woodley Island and enjoyed incredible seafood on Humboldt Bay. We hung out in Arcata, saw the Humboldt State campus, and just kind of played tourist a bit. We then revisited the adorable town of Samoa, where my Grandmother grew up, and learned a bit about its history, and her life while living there. Samoa is an incredibly tiny town that was basically established by the Hammond Lumber Company, and just about everyone living there at the time had something to do with it. Such a different time! We got to check out the Mansion (yes, there is only one), the Women's Club, the adorable tiny houses where she lived and where my dad's family lived for a brief time before migrating down to the bay area where most of us kids grew up, and of course, knowing my family, we hit up the Samoa Cookhouse. In the end we headed out to the dunes, to really complete the trip, and that experience was by far the best part. We had gathered as a family to finally lay my grandmother and my father to rest. We scattered their ashes together in a place that was really meaningful to both of them, and now even more meaningful to all of us. It was a really emotional experience, and ever since I have really wanted to take Garrett there and share that part of my life and history with him.

Oh, don't seem so depressed! The family and I also did a lot of other super fun things in the neighboring area of Trinidad (where Garrett and I are actually going to be staying), Patrick's Point, and hit up some breweries and of course another old stomping ground that I also plan to show Garrett. My whole family used to take an annual camping trip up to Richardson's Grove State Park where we would have some crazy good times that I know Garrett is probably tired of hearing about, so I am finally going to get to show him the gigantic redwoods of my childhood, the Old Eel River, and of course dispel the myth of "Elmer!" I truly can't wait, it is going to be such a great trip! And I promise, I will bring home enough milk and cookies to talk some sense into my iPhoto so I can share the good times.

Yay!

April 13, 2007

Breakfast of Champions

Kurt Vonnegut died on Wednesday, and I have to say I'm always sad when I hear about someone famous dying. Not that famous people are any different than any of us regular people, but there is something incredibly humanizing about death. It's the great equalizer, right?? Even the rich, fabulous, and influential can't beat it. Being that I was an English major, I know you probably think I'm going to wax about my love for his novels and essays and how he shaped my literary life, but if we're being totally honest here -- and I like to think we are -- I haven't read too much Vonnegut in my lifetime, so writing my imagined literary memories would be a wee bit poseur, so I will spare you. In my defense though, damnit, he gets compared to Mark Twain alot and I have read waaaaaaaaaaaaay too much Twain, so there! I'm not a failure.

But anyway, it appears that my Vonnegut memories [and this will be a total shocker] are much more pop culture related. Do you remember that wacky Baz Luhrmann song Everybody's Free (to wear sunscreen)? Well according to Wikipedia, long before that song became a part of that craptacular collection of music that we all call "the late 90's", it was widely rumored that the lyrics of this song were actuall a commencement speech that Kurt Vonnegut gave at MIT. As it turns out, however, this claim was somewhat erroneous. It was actually written by a woman named Mary Schmich who wrote for the Chicago Tribune, and it wasn't an MIT speech after all but rather her June 1997 column that contained the humorous yet insightful advice. You can read it here but thanks to our good friend Mr. Luhrmann, this will all probably seem familiar.

So all of this death, confusion, and advisement got me thinking about Schmich's advice. Or rather, about what my own advice would be, had I been in Schmich's position. What have I learned over the years, and what do I wish I could have told a younger version of myself. What do I know now that I wish I knew then? It has been wonderful food for thought.

More to come...

April 05, 2007

Yoga PSA

So last weekend I started up doing hot yoga again, and I forgot how fabulous it is! I know it sounds sort of counterintuitive to put yourself in a room that is over 100 degrees and exercise, but SERIOUSLY once you are done it all makes so much sense. I took Garrett with me as well, and it was not only his first time doing Bikram, but his first time doing any yoga. He really enjoyed it, and said he hadn't felt that worked since double days in high school, which I thought was definitely a testament to its cardiovascular nature. It's a ton of fun and I recommend it highly. Even though you are so sweaty that it's disgusting, I can't think of a better way to enjoy a few nights a week. I went back on Tuesday and even though I didn't show up quite as hydrated as I should have been (which by the way is CLUTCH if you are going to spend 90 minutes perspiring) it still felt great when I finished.

It's a nice reminder that exercise really does kick ass --- if you can just drag yours there in the first place! :)

April 03, 2007

GOOd things come to those who wait...

So it's been awhile...you are so patient...welcome back!

After that last entry, I kind of got into that rut where I felt like if I was going to post I'd have to really "say something" but instead I solved this problem by just reminding myself that I created a category called "minutiae". I had forgotten about it, and man, that just took the pressure right off. Whew! that was close.

So here goes my really riveting story...

I took the garbage out the other day --- wait for it, I promise it gets better --- and when I opened the dumpster lid, I was greeted by an incredibly large an oddly shaped box. My curiosity was indeed piqued, but since I don't normally count dumpster diving as one of my hobbies, well at least not sober, I sure wasn't about to go near it. I basically do every possible thing to NOT interact with the trash already inside the dumpster; however, in this instance I was actually tempted because I really, really wanted to know what could have possibly been in there. After all it was such a large box, capapble of holding any number of large contraptions, and it was clearly addressed to one of my neighbors. What, oh what, could have been housed in this mysterious cardboard?

So I did what I learned once on this really informative episode of CSI: Miami. You know, the one where David Caruso wasn't overacting, and wasn't saying some stupid phrase that rhymed while simultaneously squinting at the camera, and they actually caught and took down all the scary looking members of the Mala Noche gang and by using that tactic where they...oh wait, that NEVER HAPPENS (note to CSI: Miami, hook us up with some new plot lines) but anyway, I digress...So, I did what any normal, nosy neighbor would do and I looked at the return address label. This giant, contraption holding box had come from none other than GoodGoth.com. Hmmmmmmmmmm...visions of black leather contraptions and embellished coffins were dancing in my head and thus I promptly shut the dumpster, giggled to myself, and walked back to my apartment staring suspiciously at all my neighbor's bedroom windows shaking my head. But then, unfortunately, I promptly forgot about it.

Until Today.

So I was having the most efficient morning ever, when I overheard someone discussing cardboard boxes outside my cubicle, and I was suddenly transported back to that dumpster (I can smell it now, ah!) and my friends over at GoodGoth. So against my better judgment, but of course with a full 360 degree inspection outside my cubicle just to make sure if I all of a sudden pulled up something NSFW I wouldn't get totally busted...I typed the website into my browser. Up came a somehwat disappointing website selling odd goth paraphernilia, and nothing that screamed "I come in an oddly shaped box". The website itself appeared tame in content, however, it was kinda of dark and scary in a very purposeful way, and looks like a good site to bookmark for all those times when the Marilyn Manson website is down, or perhaps your mom won't drop you off at the mall even though Hot Topic is having a sale, if you know what I'm saying.

Well being the ::ahem:: "professional" that I am, I shut that down quick so that no one would walk by and think that I was counting the minutes until I could drive myself over to that wicked Hot Topic sale -- but I failed to realize that this silly, silly URL would be burned into my silly, silly web browser's memory, and so now everytime I try and go to GOOGLE (which by the way I use ALL. DAY. LONG. EVERYDAY.) by typing in "www.g-o-o" and hitting enter (since that used to bring up the site everytime) I end up back at effing goodgoth -- and I'm sure I've gotten a few raised eyebrows today. And I don't know how to make it stop!

I hate being computer retarded.

February 14, 2007

Love is All Around

One of my favorite stories I remember hearing while growing up is how my parents began dating. They were both Freshmen in high school and my mom was a letter girl and my dad played football. I know this story starts out so All American you want to be sick now but fret not, the mob tactics and bribery come later.

At the high school they both attended in Fremont, it was only the seniors who got lockers on the patio. This was the place to be apparently, and both my parents had older sisters who were seniors. My dad was lucky enough to have a sister who was willing to share her locker with him, and it was conveniently located right next to my mom's older sister Yvonne. At this point, according to my father side of the story, he was already a smitten kitten. He had spied my mom painting some football poster in the hallways one day and basically instantly fell in love with her and her "long, luxurious hair". Yes those were his words, and no he was not raised by parents who wrote romance novels or scripts for shampoo commercials. In his infinite quest to get my mom to go out with him, my dad offered to buy his sister Martha a new skirt if she would put in a good word for him with Yvonne. Apparently the fact that my dad told Yvonne daily, "You know your locker doesn't lock" hadn't gotten him very far. Go Figure.

When I ask my mom about it, she's not even sure Martha ever did put in a good word with Yvonne, or if she did, whether Yvonne ever passed on that good word. What she distinctly remembers is all his junior high friends (aw...junior high...they were such babies!) used to come up to her with newspaper clippings about him and his football prowess. Apparently everyone was trying to mack on my mom on my dad's behalf. He was working all angles. Now, whether my dad had orchestrated this or not is still debatable, but for my mom who views humility (and vaccuum lines on carpet) right up there next to Godliness, this was not doing the trick. But something about the whole sitaution did strike my mom. I mean, it must have, right? They dated for the next 8 years -- through high school, when my dad went to college in New Mexico, when he transferred to college in Hawaii. Through everything. When he was drafted to the Detroit Lions in 1976 and another big move was on the horizon, they finally decided to get hitched. To this day, even though my dad passed away in 1999, he is still the love of my mom's life.

"So what the heck was it?" I asked her this afternoon, "What made you finally go out with dad?" And do you know what her answer was? What it was that made my mom love him to begin with, and love him to this day:

"He was relentless."

Relentless.

That's it. I'm sure in the end it helped that it wasn't like creepy-stalker- weirdo relentless, and that he actually called her and was actually nice to her -- but on a day like today, when candied "I Love You's", predictable floral arrangements, and dinner reservations abound - I am reminded of how much better real love is. Love that cannot be expressed by Hallmark. As far as I'm concerned very few relationships hold a candle to the kind of love my parents had. It's funny, because looking back, none of those material love-markers were really around when I was growing up. My dad was never the big romancer guy. I mean he was big, and a guy, but that's really where the similarities end. He rarely brought home flowers, my mother was never dripping in jewels representing birthdays past, and if there was chocolate around it was more likely that my mom had baked something delicious than my dad stopping to pick up some sweets for his sweet. But as a child even, I never had any doubt that my parents loved each other. Because none of those things are what love is about.

I think that when it came to my mom, there was nothing that my dad wouldn't do for her, and I know for a fact that the feeling was mutual on my mom's end. That's just the kind of people they were. To me, to everyone, but especially to each other. When it comes to really loving someone, I think both parties in any relationship would agree there is really only one thing you ever want your significant other to do for you. And its not bring you flowers, or buy you diamonds. It's not buy a stuffed animal, or pay for an expensive dinner. Those things are nice, but they sure don't make you feel comforted. It's about being relentless. It's about knowing that the list of things you would do for that person begins and ends with 'anything'.

February 13, 2007

13 Questions any junior high gal would ask...

I've had a long day at work and I've been saving this little 13 question douchebag myspace style game to play with your iPOD until exactly the right headspace. The instructions say to hit the shuffle and answer the next 13 questions...so I did. Some were HYSTERICAL:


1. What do you think of me, little iPod?
Paranoid Android, Radiohead

yeah, well who asked you???

2. Will I have a happy life?
To Live and Die in LA, 2Pac

Hmm...I did live in LA. Does that mean I will die there, or perhaps in a Vegas shoot out?

3. What do my friends really think of me?
It's Not Up to You, Bjork

How the heck do you know its not up to me?

4. What does my significant other think of me?
Nothing Wrong, Jimmy Eat World

HA! I'm happy to see that one, and its ironic knowing how Garrett feels about Jimmy Eat World...

5. Do people secretly lust after me?
Gone, Jack Johnson

ahem, clearly my iPod doesn't know that I've STILL got IT. Maybe it just didn't get the memo.

6. How can I make myself happy?
Miner's Prayer, Dwight Yoakam

I have Dwight Yoakam on my iPod?

7. What should I do with my life?
Just, Radiohead

Just? Just what, Radiohead?

8. Why must life be so full of pain?
Merry Muthafuckin' Christmas, Easy-E

...uh, and a happy new year?

9. How can I maximize my pleasure during sex?
Sulk, Radiohead

I'm not kidding. I don't think this will work, actually.

10. Can you give me some advice?
Touch the Sky, Kaney West

Thanks, bro.

11. What do you think happiness is?
You Be Illin', Run DMC

Me and ill of any sort does not equal happiness.

12. Do you have any advice to give over the next few hours/days?
Let Me Kiss You, Morrissey

"There's a place in the sun for anyone who has a will..." Aw, I like that song

13. Will I die happy?
It's a Hit, Rilo Kiley

Yes or No, iPod. Yes. Or. No.

I'm really glad there was no #14, since the fourteenth song was Bombs Over Baghdad, by Outkast. Hmm...anyway, I don't feel any more enlightened, although now my penchant for nerdy surveys/tests is on display so everyone can see. Awesome.

February 12, 2007

If you ask me...that's a bargain!

At $2,119,600.00 it looks like selling my soul really will be the quickest and most efficient way to pay off my student loans and buy a home in California.

How much are you worth?

February 09, 2007

If I ran PETA...

I'm really not sure what purpose Paris Hilton serves on this planet besides being a constant emaciated reminder of what entitlement would look like if personified. I'm sure she's a very nice girl and all, but she doesn't do very much and is filthy rich and frankly that bugs me. If I were more zen and stuff I probably wouldn't care, but I'm just not, and besides if I were more zen and stuff I probably wouldn't have much to write about, and what fun would that be? Anyway, confessions aside, when Paris had flour thrown on her by PETA for attending a fashion show where fur was being used, I have to admit I found it somewhat humorous.

Today at work I started thinking a little deeper about it though (I mean I deserved a break from all the deep thinking I've been doing about Anna Nicole right?) and I came to the conclusion that this flour throwing stunt really wasn't that efficient. Actually, I'm ready to say that PETA's haterade tactics are generally not that efficient -- and boy I should know because I am a connosieur of the haterade. You see, I'm an underwriter for an insurance company by trade and I spend the bulk of my day looking at specific qualities of companies who desire insurance in an effort to determine their potential risk factors. It's not really rocket science, I mean its pretty well documented that certain traits tend to yield certain results. For example people with bad credit scores have more of a tendency not to pay things than people with good credit scores, and people who leave expensive things in places where there are no security measures in place tend to get robbed more often than people who keep their bling under lock and key, ya dig? All of this takes extensive training I assure you, but I won't bore you with the details. Basically on a regular basis I decide whether providing property/liability insurance for a certain business is going to be a good investment for my employer. And for the most part it's actually a pretty rad job, but the one uncontrollable side effect is that its turned me into kind of a hater.

See it's a total NERD-ALERT occupational hazard now, that when I'm on the premises of a business I am unconsciously determining exposures to loss in my head. I walk down to my local Safeway, and the cracks in the parking lot make "SLIP AND FALL HAZARD" appear in my head in neon lights. I pass quaint lofts above neighborhood bistros and I think "ALERT ALERT - life safety issues for all tenants. What happens when that kitchen catches on fire??? YOU DIE!" You get the picture - I just have a hard time turning that off. So what does all this have to do with PETA, you wonder? Ah, what a tangential train of thought this brain weaves...allow me to explain.

So on my way back to work from lunch today I passed the Planned Parenthood building off of Biz 80, and thought smugly to myself as I usually do, "ha ha! we would NEVER insure that!" Who wants to insure the building of any location that people like to bomb? Not I said the fly- er...rather, said the company I work for. And for some reason this made me think of the aforementioned surprise attack PETA made on Paris, and how even though this got so much publicity, did it really deter Paris from wearing fur? Um, no more than it detered her from being a vapid, orange waste of space, methinks.

So then I thought, why doesn't PETA ever head on down to their local Black Angus or Ruth's Chris and flour up all of their patrons in their pretty suburban-nite-out outfits? I mean doesn't that make more sense? Haven't you seen those Ruby-Tuesday commercials? They use 3 kinds of steak in their burgers!!!! It's called efficiency, people! If your fighting for the humane treatment of animals, why don't you start with carnivores? I mean sure Paris probably shows up here and there in a fur coat, but I mean all you have to do to remedy that is call up Anna Wintour and tell her the next big trend is Hefty bag dresses...and then the whole world will see Paris in the couture that she was really born to wear. I mean I may never insure another steakhouse again, but c'mon, Paris Hilton in a trash bag? Wouldn't that just make the world an infinitely better place? C'mon PETA, get rid of the flour and get on the bus!

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