Monday, April 30, 2007
People, Society, if you will, I think it's time we get this out in the open.
How much time do you spend in your front yard? I'd like a pretty good scientific guess. What do you think is the cumulative amount of time you have spent in your front yard in the last five years?
Are there any special attractions in your front yard? Do you have a fountain or a slide? Maybe you're an exquisite orchid grower. Maybe you've got a tennis court? Does your yard overlook Niagara Falls?
Because otherwise, I sure can't tell why you'd want to spend hours every single day in rain, sleet, snow, wind or sunshine in your front yard. I mean, don't get me wrong, I am all for spending time in the Great Outdoors. More power to ya. Power to the people and all that jazz.
When you've got me rooting for rain? On a glorious Spring day? You spend an unhealthy ratio of time available in your life diddling in your front yard.
I think it's time for us to cover the last unadorned window in our house with a black out shade.
Back yards are a whole other story. Stay out all night, I don't care. Hanging out in the back yard is completely normal. I mean, if you're into that sort of thing...
Sunday, April 29, 2007
Now this is just out of hand. I completely missed Grey's Anatomy and the Friday night replay of the Thursday episode. Lorelai and Rory are hard to resist. But here's the problem. I tend to um, what is the word I am looking for here, obsess. Just because I want a scale model of Stars Hollow and I am really hoping that they actually take up knitting closer to Season Three than Season Seven. (Though, ugh, I suspect from the snooping I have been doing on the Internets.) Damnit I cannot spend two minutes on this dumb computer without my fingers wandering up to the Google toolbar and looking for something related to the Gilmore Girls. The problem is that I am so far behind that every little corner has a spoiler in it for me. I shouldn't know how many episodes Rory's boyfriend Dean is in. Uh oh, things are not looking good for them. And Sookie and Jackson are married (we know they are headed that way) and they have children, plural.
In other news, Jac and I played some fabulous Scrabble. We are evenly matched. We also comically both bought giant bags of ice in something out of Three's Company. We are really going to have to take up drinking blended drinks big time. That might not be a bad thing after the 9am meeting I have tomorrow that I have been psychically hiding from all weekend...with the Lorelais. Hmm.
Friday, April 27, 2007
But now, that there are a whole lot of episodes of this undiscovered show on DVD and the rumor that there is knitting on this show and now I am obsessed. I'm well into Season One and they just had the Stars Hollow Festival and all the little town folks were doing all the little town stuff and I thought how mooshy it all was and how I just wanted to pick up and move to Stars Hollow until Holy Cow, I already live there, well, some of the time at least.
Besides, I can live in the "real" Stars Hollow vicariously for weeks thanks to a very major sale at Target. Damnit, Rory and Dean just broke up, this is not going to be pretty.
Wednesday, April 25, 2007
Tuesday, April 24, 2007
You know it's not every night we head out to the Big City to paint the town red. I had to really search the old memory banks to remember how to get to Dupont Circle.
Jac's old friend emailed today and suggested we meet up for dinner. I got out of work early and the friend got into town early so we were all lined up for a Geriatric Meal only in the city. That is a whole other world people. We headed against traffic into the Big City and picked up our date and then swung over to Cleveland Park or was it Woodley Park for some rollicking good times downing margaritas.
The City is a whole other place when you do it backwards. We were heading into the city while everyone else was headed out. We were going out to dinner before everyone else had even gotten into their cars. We managed to pick one of the six weekdays a year when the city has irresistable weather and the tourists haven't quite overrun the joint. Our visitor took a giant whiff of the City air and declared it "wonderful smelling". It was a confluence of events that made the city radiate with unusual beauty. So many months of the year it's easy to see the city as a big bad swamp. With so many crazy curmudgeons running around, it's easy to see the city as a political puddle. But when the stars align just right it's hard to say anything bad about this town.
"Washingtonian?" he said. Is that what you call yourselves? Yes, I said, we are Washingtonians.
Monday, April 23, 2007
HeadOn - of course and for obvious reasons.
NutriSystem - "My hezzbund jokingly calls me his trophy wife." - You are an idiot and your husband is making fun of you.
Baba My Babybel - look you idiots jumping out of an airplane. Here's the deal, we are America and we get our own commercials. If you want to sell us your cheese you have to make an American commercial. Even if you do it poorly, by thickly announcing with your Former Soviet accent "Does your computer have vurms?" At least they try. You are not Mentos, you are cheese. Look up Madison Avenue.
Hertz - "I wanna rock!" OMFG STFU! Why are you blaring rock, why is she answering in rock. You know why? Because everyone who uses Hertz who isn't a "Number One Gold" customer (which you have to pay to be!?!?!?!?) has to physically go to the damn counter and deal with a music-spewing doofus. Don't even let me start telling you about the week we spent at the Hertz counter in Orlando. Dude, shut your mouth and go to Avis where you can roll right to your Hyundai and get on with it.
American Cancer Society Bob the Lima Bean Polyp Man - Now, I get that you are the American Cancer Society. I get that you are good. But when Bob draws a line through his mashed potatoes to simulate eating the polyp they may find in your colon, well that's just totally uncalled for. I also gotta call you out for trying to hard by having the black female in the commercial say, "Oh no, you didn't."
RBS Cablecar Usually I'm down with your commercials. The message is to quit talking about it and do something. In this one though, the lone idiot girl in the cable car loses it when the car gets stuck wobbling somewhere over the Alps. She first brushes her hair and then screams. Great.
ADT, OnStar, all Fear-Based "Security" commercials. Go home and leave your alarm off. You should be ashamed of your self.
Free Credit Report Dot Com - How is it possible someone as stupid as you are could quote quote quote "Help people get their lifes back on track."
And finally, the Progressive Middle of the Night Beeping Smoke Detector commercial - for the love of God, by the time that guy got to that detector in the basement at 3 in the morning, he would have ripped it off the wall.
There, I feel better now.
Sunday, April 22, 2007
Saturday, April 21, 2007
Thursday, April 19, 2007
After such a crazy ass few weeks, I was delighted to even just listen to the women talking about everything under the sun. Some of them are making great progress on their latest projects. It gave me hope that there might be bound off edges in the future of some of my own.
Shortly this afternoon, I am off to the river, hopefully for 72 solid hours of R&R. I want to make some more of that delish bread, freaking knit something, and VEG. Here's hoping for a day without clients, eh?
Wednesday, April 18, 2007
I can hardly wait to knit tonight. It's Knit Night in the 'hood and I am going to be there with fiber in hand. I think I'll be bringing food and wine as well. It's definitely time for a little yarn winding and mental unwinding. I am still feeling a little uninspired with my current projects. I actually have no idea why I didn't pack some knitting for work today, except that work has been so completely insane lately that I couldn't fathom having actual time to knit a row. I am sort of tempted to swing by the glorious Knit Happens on my way home today, but like, hello, duh! I have enough yarn. Well, that's not true, no amount is actually enough. But I do have more yarn than I can reasonably execute in a sensible period of time.
Now that my friend's lovely baby is approaching Birthday One, I have got to get my ess together and hook that kid up with a handknit good. I have cast on for a baby sweater, but I have visions of accidentally knitting a tarp and then only discovering this when the mother tries to adhere said tarp to the munchkin. Ah well, here goes nothing.
Tuesday, April 17, 2007
I'm kind of swimming in chemistry this week, reveling in the none-too-soon departure of the O'Brien duo from CNN's American Morning. They've been replaced by Kiran Chetry and John Roberts and man have those people got chemistry oozing out of their perfect hair follicles. Kiran's a little suspect at this point because of her previous job, but she is just completely palatable first thing in the morning when I hate the world. Yesterday was their first morning on the air. I actually woke up early and happy watching news people who didn't fill the screen with their, um, personalities, in a bad way. I flipped over to MSNBC and did a little kicky jig while still completely horizontal under the covers at the presence of David Gregory and the absence of that crochety unwatchable cowboy.
When I was little we would go with my Dad to pick up carry out Chinese food or the "good pizza" from the Irish pizza joint. Sometimes, we'd end up making a detour as we flew into action tailing an ambulance or fire engine. I remember distinctly sitting outside in an apartment complex on a cold night while Dad interviewed firemen about what turned out to be a dryer fire. It was exhilirating to a little girl whose dad was the editor of the county newspaper. News is in our blood, my grandfather was a newspaper editor and reporter too.
I confess to being hooked on the adrenaline rush of genuine "breaking news". I grew up in a boring suburb, but my ears always perk up when it makes the news for any reason. Whenever a place, person or organization with whom I have some affiliation makes the news I feel a flicker of excitement not only about the visibility of a place I know, but also that rush that says, "Something is happening!"
But so often these last few years, that feeling quickly turns to, "My God, how can this be happening?" We can all think of a list of things that we thought could never happen, or that wouldn't happen "here", that have continued to shock us. Yesterday, amidst all the shock I had one strong visceral reaction. It was to the announcement, even as events unfolded, that today there would be a Convocation *quote* "to begin the healing process". It was still happening and people were already commanding "move forward". I think when we are hurt, we need some time to ache and to grasp the magnitude of what's happened. It made me ill to hear the trite psychobabble emerge and to watch political and journalistic opportunism swing into action.
The whole notion of "Don't Let Them Get You Down (Ever)" be it a national tragedy or a weather event, or a case of the flu... I just don't comprehend the need to persevere with intent haste under all circumstances. Sometimes you just need to sob.
Thursday, April 12, 2007
Lexi is taking in the fine fiber fumes from my yarn stash. But after a long, long day, do I smell change in the air? I anticipated a tense talk with a client (it was about money, afterall) and I dunno if I'm just an old battle worn badass or if it just wasn't that bad, but I came through unscathed.
But perhaps even more impressive, I am actually cooking dinner for my husband tonight. Last night we frittered away the dinner hour until it was clear we had to just give up and order a pizza. Tonight we're having a roast chicken, potatoes with leeks and spinach. Yummer!
I do smell something funky though, something that reeks of vintage. Ah, yes, it's the mystery boxes from Hotlanta. They are indeed family history, including letters to my hmm, what was she, my grandfather's niece - guess I have to learn that stuff if I'm going to be Ms. Genealogy - from the 1930's. They've been in an attic for oh, about 70 years.
Wednesday, April 11, 2007
I've been yelled at by all kinds of folks. The executive director of the first org I worked at after college turned purple and strained her face when she told me that "We do not ever wear jeans here." (Even though of course I already knew that and duh, everyone was wearing jeans that day because she was supposed to be out of town and duh, we all wear jeans when you're out of town, who do you think you are, the fashion police?)
One of my greatest Consumer Diva moments actually came in line at Starbucks right before Christmas one year. I was standing in a line that was too long, waiting too long, for a bunch of coffees to carry back to the office because I was Coffee Girl. The man right behind me started to hem and haw, then he grunted and groaned, he tried to engage my ire in the delay. Finally, he had a full-on outburst where he ranted about the "stupid people" making his coffee and some other such stuff. I turned and faced him and let him have it - what was wrong with the coffee that was three feet from his desk that he felt compelled to come in here, in this obviously crowded, busy, swamped place only to explode over the fact that it takes a couple minutes to make him his friggin' Frappucino? He was shocked and deflated. Other customers shot me looks that praised me for shooting him down. I think the barista gave me an extra hit of mocha.
That's not to say that I'm a cool cucumber, I totally get crazy at people and lines and delays, but there's still a modicum of decency you need to have when communicating with other people. So often I think service people get the brunt of the bad behavior society has to dish out, but it took my breath away today when a Very Senior Person at a Very Impressive Company lashed out at my designer - the same designer who's spent the last three weeks exceeding her every desire.
Dude, can't we all just get a long? Like, Kumbaya and stuff.
Tuesday, April 10, 2007
Meg Swan: That's right. And I thought that was really sexy.
So I guess we are a funny couple. Tonight we went to (okay you caught me, this afternoon since we are positively geriatric) dinner and our waiter took a special interest in us. Jac ordered crab fritters and when I passed he wondered if I had a crab allergy. I explained that I just don't like seafood, but Jac loves it. As Jac enjoyed his halibut, I pushed my dinner aside and asked the waiter for the dessert menu. I ordered the creme brulee and the waiter wondered if Jac wanted a spoon. No, he doesn't really do dessert. Our waiter marveled at our differences. Then he told us we reminded him of the couple in Best in Show. How had we ever managed to meet and get together?
He reminded us how they met:
Meg Swan: We met at Starbucks. Not at the same Starbucks but we saw each other at different Starbucks across the street from each other.
Thank God he didn't see our dog or he would really not be able to get us out of his head. As I blogged I was reminded of just how dead on Best in Show really is.
Hamilton Swan: Honey, I'm thinking of switching to the mock turtleneck?
Meg Swan: Is that not breathing?
Hamilton Swan: Well, it's breathing now, but it'll be hot down there. I could go with the lambswool, but then again, you'll see a lot of khaki down there and this merlot looks good with the gray.
It is hot as hell, possibly hotter, down on the floor at Westminster. I am somewhat surprised (but grateful) that the attendees don't go bare.
Monday, April 09, 2007
And also, they have note even begun to realize the extent of this nostalgia because not only is there an anniversary (of the date) day, there is a First Date Anniversary Eve. Well, okay, not really, even I'm not that looney, but Jac did hook me up with some FDAE swag.
Now this you may think is cool:I said may. Jac actually went through the knitting section and found a book that I don't own. I can't even do that most of the time. I am glad because it takes some of the pressure off of Cast Off which I have been reading with wild abandon.
His next choice you might find suspect. You might also begin to question if everything you know about me is just a mirage -- a smokescreen of youth hiding a very elderly knitter. First there was Jessica Fletcher. She's got me totally hooked with her murder a day life. But I'm starting to notice a few repeats here and there, so I needed something to pinch-hit when J.B. is re-investigating a crime I've already solved. So we brought Quincy home. And Quincy is great, we're working our way through the first season, but Quincy is a real time commitment - the first season was all 2-hour movies. Where to turn when I need a quick fix of geriatric crime solving?
I couldn't do Matlock. I'm just not that senile yet. But I must say, Dick Van Dyke was hmm, hot is not quite the word I was looking for, but he was certainly appealing. Anyway, I think if the pattern I'm knitting is sufficiently complex I should be able to just about synchronize high-intensity knitting with low-impact crime solving with a Scott Baio kicker.
Sunday, April 08, 2007
All that fluffy whiteness inspired me to think up a cafe mousse dessert for dinner last night. Don't think about what's in it (cream, sugar, cream cheese, coffee) unless you have no fear of joules.
And this afternoon, I thought I'd take off the chill with a couple warm fresh whole wheat boules. There is seriously nothing better than butter melting on fresh baked bread.
It feels like our weekend at the river was all too short, but we'll take any retreat we can get.
Saturday, April 07, 2007
We woke up this morning to find a winter wonderland. On April 7. On the
I am sure we could technically get to the grocery store if this were a matter of urgency. Though, we can’t even see our neighbor’s dock right now. Today was the day we’d planned to get the boat out of winter storage and ready for spring outings. Ha!
We didn’t bring my copy of
It is really coming down out there. I think I’m going to have to come up with a culinary adventure. Wow, brisket is corned beef? I had no idea.
Friday, April 06, 2007
There are lots of things that I wish I did not know. The caloric value of a veggie bean burrito at Baja Fresh: 648. That lamb is baby sheep. The taste of red wine going the wrong direction in my body. But lately I feel like there are lo, so many things I'd just rather have slept through.
My boss made a snarky remark to our other partner about the two of us. A totally unwarranted snarky remark, but that tends not to matter when it's bouncing around my head like a racquetball. I wish I did not know that another coworker needs to work all weekend to meet a client's frivolous demands. I know that Monday's going to be a really busy day at work, which makes the third weekend in a row less than totally relaxing.
I know that my current knitting project is doomed to be frogged or a loser. I know that I forgot my camera at the other house and can't take any beauty shots of anything for my blog this weekend and that I left my ipod at work. I know that lots of restaurants just reheat pre-cooked food from SYSCO. And now I know my husband's gonna drag me out to be sociable and all.
Wednesday, April 04, 2007
I am really going to have to actually knit a few stitches today to maintain any street cred about being a knitter, but boy am I spoiled?
Today the Yarn Harlot's new book arrived. And I got a surprise gift from Jac: Knitting Without Tears. (Which I've really felt a little silly not to have read yet.) Anyway, The new books look lovely. I see they've tricked out the pages of SPM Casts Off and that's kind of cool.
Tuesday, April 03, 2007
Sometime after the dawn of the new millenium, after Prince had gone back to his real name, and after a new Beatles wife had claimed the title of "Worst Beatles Wife Ever", I was released back into the wild of the shopping plaza.
Good grief, text messages, phone calls, voice mails, was I supposed to do something today? Besides get a free haircut and lengthy scalp massage?
I booked over to TapasTapasTapas and dialed up Jac at the same time. When I spotted Jac across the intently landscaped shopping plaza, I summoned all the Kim the Hairjacker persuasion I could muster. "Hello sir, would you like a free haircut - I mean, drink with my client and his entire family?"
I can really build a two-post story arch out of anything. This one time, I found some lint in... But I digress. I lured Jac into the restaurant with the predatory tact of well, any scary mugshot owner and there we were greeted by the sweet song stylings of an incredibly manicured Austrian singing family.
Now actually, I have to say that our family was really of German origin, but this is poetic license. Also, they were not wearing any form of lederhosen (Wow, that's the right spelling?), but they were an ensemble to be sure.
This is the point where I must remind you of my Constitutional duty to uphold the Third Amendment - no not the thing about quartering troops, the lesser known part that says that anyone found to in anyway heckle or disparage the phenomenally lovely Von Trapp family shall be immediately ex-communicated to a very, very bad place such as Thursday night on NBC. Snap!
And seriously, how the hell could anyone not love the Von Trapps? They're 16 going on 17, and OMFG Liesel you are the most adorable freaking thing on the planet!! And the clothes made out of bedsheets and curtains were just the tops.
And just like the Hairjacker, Captain Von Trapp offered to ply me with drinks and tax services. Mmm tax services. Anyway, when a 9 year old like Liesel unabashedly declares, "I like you!" No matter how hard-hearted an evil villain ya might be, you are pretty much a puddle of glee in the approval of a nine year old who has decided you're the coolest thing that's happened to her since lunch. You like me, you really like me!
What a crazy, crazy day people. Also, I must say, it helps to be a little bit drunk. Thank the Heavens there was no blogging when I was in college or I would probably be an urban legend right now.
Anyway, so I started the day with women of a very government persuasion for breakfast. When you invite a girl to breakfast and ask her to pay $35 for the pleasure, you might want to give her a table at which to sit. But she'll surely enjoy the styrofoam food, er, plate. PS. 7:30 in the morning is an ungodly time to ask anyone to be anywhere.
Add in two conference calls and a hurry up deliverable and then man oh man a cocktail with my husband is such a delightful thing. Then a client called (and I am not a call girl) and suggested that I join his family for a drink. My poor Jac got seduced into joining me at the mall by the prospect of a drink in the sun. (It's a crazy radiant day here btw.)
So we had a cocktail and waited for the 411 to meet up with the client. Jac left me to shop in the "fun mall" and I had about an hour and a half to kill. That sounds like almost enough time for Sur la Table. Almost. But as I was passing the Elizabeth Arden salon, a crazed hairstylist emerged and begged me to cut my hair for free. Okay, well it was something like that. And she wasn't exactly a full-fledged stylist. She was a "stylist assistant". Kim still had 400 hours left of training and today's task was to cut someone's hair into a bob. Kim had lined up a "model" - a friend of hers to be the guinea pig, but her model was a no show. Kim was a woman on a mission and I was a woman with an hour to kill and no discernable ability to resist a woman in need.
Kim lured me up to the EA salon. Through the Big Red Doors (of no return) and offered up drinks and hot towels and I think I could have had a full dental cleaning had I wanted one. Kim wrapped a warm towel around my neck and mmmm... was there something I was supposed to do today?
Now, I am, I think I can unabashedly say, a bit of a bob afficionado. I have been bobbed in the most rural country, by a very snotty French man at a "fine salon" in DC who scolded me for coloring AND blow drying my hair, and even at the home of the bob itself - in Paris. But I have never been bobbed like I was today. Kim settled me into her chair and proffered any other beverage or tax service I might enjoy. Then she fastidiously set about sectioning and combing my hair. With each comb, her instructor came over and lent advice. Joshua, the bemohawked Johnathon of the EA Salon watched every move. Kim said she was making him nervous. Go away Joshua, go far, far away.Kim sectioned and sectioned. Her instructor checked and re-sectioned. It was a good 30 minutes before Kim cut a hair. Was I supposed to be somewhere? Wasn't I supposed to eat something? Kim cut one line of hair and waited for her instructor to approve. All I heard was, "Why isn't this straight?" I'm just guessing but I'd venture those are the last words a woman with a mere 400 hours left in her cosmetological training wants to hear. Anyway, a short time later the second square inch was cut and we were off to the races. I suppose I've had hundreds of haircuts, but this is the first time I ever heard someone identify my occipital lobe. Kim was so diligent. I knew this would be the most textbook perfect haircut I'd ever get in my life, even if it might take the remainder of that life for it to happen.
The time for my drinks with the client and husband came and went. The thing about a haircut is that it can seem like it is surely almost done for a very, very long time. Very.
When I found the husband and the client they were still separate and both perplexed about what the hell rabbit hole I'd fallen down to be more than 30 minutes late.
My God my hair smells fabulous. Oh good grief, I think this is a two-post-friggin'-story-arch.