Thursday, November 30, 2006

grissom point blank

[Talking to his psychiatrist about going to his high school reunion]
John Cusack: They all have husbands and wives and children and houses and dogs, and, you know, they've all made themselves a part of something and they can talk about what they do. What am I gonna say? "I killed the president of Paraguay with a fork. How've you been?"

I decided to turn on one of my Netflix movies last night. Finally get that queue rolling again after a long stand-still. The only thing I had at home which wasn't a serious movie was Grosse Point Blank. I'll admit... I didn't know too too much about the movie, having heard it was pretty funny along with having been recommended to me once upon a time by the Realtor. I thought it would be a good one to turn on while cleaning up pre-party.


I was so surprised how ironically appropriate it was. I believe it's been a couple of weeks since I received the Evite for my ten year high school reunion. I was quite amused as I realized that the movie was about John Cusack's own reunion. The concept of a reunion for whatever reason has always fascinated me. Perhaps it's my natural curiosity. I'll admit, I'm a nosy person. In this case though, I think it especially stems from having been so distanced from that whole environment for so long. I didn't stay and go to college locally. I didn't move back to the area. I go back to visit maybe two, three times max a year. There's only a small handful of people that I stay in touch with now -- not because I don't want to be in touch with others, but the reality is that it just doesn't work so well with most. And that's okay.

I think it's natural to wonder who's changed... who's remained exactly the same... which people even maybe live around the corner from your new nook of the world without you even knowing it. The movie focused though on John Cusack's high school love... which, I must admit, made me think of beauxs past. How is it that at the age when people tended to not have more serious relationships that I had so many? And, in the days since, that I've gone to the other end of the spectrum as single in the city? Just an observation. Perhaps it's the recent experiences that have sort of changed my outlook on the whole dating ritual. A friend's recent
blog post hits a lot of it dead-on.

While I didn't have a memory quite like Minnie Driver of being jilted prom night, I did remember the pre-senior prom break-up (by one week!). If you're reading this, no worries. No hard feelings. There were lots of characters that I dated, for sure... the Hippie... the Older Guy... Older Guy number 2 (hah)... the one the parents didn't approve of (or know about, for the most part)... the Musician... the Repeat... the Poser... definitely a mixed bag, but I think it gives a great broad perspective. To each their own, but I do think it's great that I've had so many different experiences. Now at 27, I don't feel the burning need to re-discover myself or experience life... I think I've done all of that along the way. I don't feel like I've missed anything in getting here.

Hmmm... so will any of my exes arrive to the reunion as a professional killer? Hope not. Hah. We'll let John keep that honor. And I'll have to hold off on claiming to have invented
Post-Its. We know how that would end. I am curious to see how things have changed, but I think I'm glad to know I'm arriving not worried about how something might have gone differently with someone... or with any sort of charged expectations of something I'd like to see transpire there. I think the upside of having been single in the city as of late is that I've become pretty independent. Not that I wasn't somewhat before, but I think that the past three years or so have allowed me to find a new-found appreciation for where I've come and who I am. Have I done stuff I'm not particularly proud of? Sure... but I've said it before, I don't believe in regrets. Those mistakes brought me here and they're part of me and my story (albeit the chapters perhaps few know).

Ironic definitely that the movie tied so nicely in with what's going on now. Definitely made me think of those high school days and piqued my curiosity for next August. And on that front, to be continued...

As a completely separate side note to my fellow single in the city gals, you have to check out this story on the New York Times on what boils down to disposable numbers to give out to people you meet out. Interesting concept. Not sure what I think on that, although I can see where it would have it's value. Very interesting.

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

betty crocker comes to town

I picked up my car yesterday. All repaired... bright, shiny, and new again. I noticed that the area around the car's logo which had previously been really scratched up from the egging had been fixed! I guess they fixed it at the body shop when they were repairing the bumper. I'm not complaining, just commenting and definitely appreciating. If I have to have the car repaired so soon into it's brief life, I might as well make the most of whatever perks came with the whole process.

Okay, so as I've mentioned before, I don't cook. I admit it. No shame. Okay, maybe a little bit... but I realize that for the moment, I can get by on minimal cooking, and I like that. Well, that and the fact is that happy hours and appetizers makes cooking a big meal lose its luster. And I digress...

What I do is bake. I love to bake... and baking and the holidays go together like peas and carrots ;) To gear up for our upcoming party, I picked up pretzels to make my holiday fave, white chocolate covered pretzels. I'm currently sans-candy coating though, as all the ones at Safeway were open at the seam (gotta watch that Safeway), so one item definitely remains to be purchased. With our JLW cookie exchange coming up as well on Saturday, I'm all about the bake-ed goods this week - and this is only round one. I think I was buying more to make my sweets than to eat over the course of this week. Sounds right about on par - hah.

Holiday season is in full swing. My tree is up (naked, but up). Presents are definitely not yet bought, but I've begun the thought process there. Christmas party? Planned and almost here... Fun holiday-esque outfit? Check. Christmas vacation time? Requested and approved (yesssss). New Year's Eve plans? Confirmed and paid. Formal dress? Shopping excursion to follow. How much do I love the holidays? I'm really looking forward to my family coming here for the holidays. My roommates are both headed out of town, so I'll have the rowhouse all to myself, warm radiators and all. This will be my first Christmas in DC since I've previously headed back to Alabama. Anything not to be missed?

Friday, November 24, 2006


Hope everyone's surviving those post-turkey comas. As much as you hear about the infamous culprit, AKA tryptophan, how much is truly fact and how much is fiction? All I know is that at this point after all the eating of the day, I'm tired... and stuffed. I'm guessing I'd feel this way if the turkey were present or not (and in Jersey, haha, they were trying to not be present. Anyone see this?)

So my plan was to avoid the Black Friday insanity of tomorrow, but seems we got a jump start on the whole thing this PM with the madness of CompUSA. Yes, we waited in the long lines for something which, ironically, wasn't even one of their crazy pre-Christmas specials. Ms. Tamela, who's a big MAC fan, couldn't wait for her computer. It did mean we got a view from the road across the street of all the people who at 10:30 or so were already camped out for BestBuy for tomorrow (as well as a view from the road en route back home of the church with Jesus painted on the facade which looks like an eggbeater Jesus - awesome).

Tam and I caught up on the O.C. (the whole season thus far). That was a classssssy way to begin Turkey Day, but made for some fun sisterly bonding. My mom's feast was positively superb... I can't name off all the food. If I manage to get to being half the cook she is, I'll count myself blessed. Of course though, I already consider myself blessed.

Gobble gobble... I definitely said my share of "gracias" today. Hope you all had a special one with yours wherever you landed today.


Thursday, November 23, 2006

when city meets the country

It was the strangest thing... I don't know that I've ever felt like it was Christmas Eve on Thanksgiving Eve. Is it possible we skipped Thanksgiving altogether? Was I misinformed? Let's hope not... I'll be sorely disappointed if tomorrow doesn't bring the normal Southern Thanksgiving feast, fabulous random balloon's courtesy of Macy's, and the special added bonus of an extended Grey's Anatomy. Can life get any better?

I'm loving being back in sweet home AL. It's such a change of pace from DC. I'm enjoying my hiatus (although I do enjoy the thought of returning... ah, how I do love the mix). The trip home was excitingly uneventful. So after hearing the horror stories of just how awful the lines were going to be at the airport, I made sure to high-tail it out of the office pronto on Tuesday. I was glad to not have to wait in long lines, but I was there for quite a long time. I made friends with a nice lady who was stranded there until a later flight (her company had originally booked her for a flight the following day - ooops). She was also in HR, so as you can imagine we had no problems yakking. She did tell me that I was the first Southern girl that she had met who did not cook avidly. I don't know what to think of that comment... I'll choose to let it slide!

Today we made a dent in the shopping fun, beating the insanity of black Friday. I'm just not a supporter of that initiative. I enjoy the breath of fresh air of everything being a bit spread out here vs. in DC, so the idea of throwing chaotic shopping into my AL mix is just not too appealing. I managed to find a great outfit for our upcoming Christmas party and also a cute pair of antlers (haha, why not?). I'm pleased. No more shopping needs here... I even successfully resisted a pair of Seven jeans today (I would have felt a smidge guilty, as I think they're the same pair as the Fashionista's. I'll let you hold that honor!).

I'm loving the 'rent's new pad. The concept of coming home to a new "home" was initially a bit odd, but now that I'm here, I really like the new place! It feels so roomy. My parents mentioned that it was about 400 sq feet larger, which seemed like not much -- until I remembered my Dupont pad was only a mere 615 sq feet! That gave me a bit of perspective - hah!

The area out here's amazing though... it was truly a country area, but as Huntsville's grown, it's become much more developed. Those areas which haven't been developed yet will be shortly. I think one of the most interesting things about leaving and coming back is to see the change. That's definitely been a big one! But it's still sweet home... home sweet home.


Tuesday, November 21, 2006

you can take the girl out of the south...

but sure can't take the South out of the girl...

(I know, I know... technically DC is still the South. However, for those of you who have been to my former residences, be it Alabama or Mississippi... it's a whooooole different kinda south. If every restaurant ain't serving sweet tea honey, you ain't in the South!)

So yeah, I digress... at long last, I'm ready to shed my MySpace wings and put this out there to the general public. The Fashionista I were discussing this over the weekend and I figured what the heck. Why not? I do realize that this is pretty public. But it's not (hopefully) likely to lend itself to anything more embarrassing than my foray into the online dating scene. Which, now, I can definitely look back upon and laugh (yes, random UA guy, I was at the movie theater in Chinatown. Contrary to popular belief, I am more than a smattering of pixels on your monitor...).

I'm sitting here at work, a bit brain-fried from a looooong night of number crunching. Now though, with all that behind me, there's nothing but vacation time straight ahead. I splurged for a cab this morning, and was fortunate enough to have I think one of the most friendly and sincere cab drivers I've yet to encounter. We ended up in this long discussion about being single. He praised my single-dom at my age, telling me all about how he'd married before he was 18 and never completed college. "Live your life", he said. "It'll always be there when you're ready and you'll have no regrets". Right on, cabbie. I surely don't feel like I've missed out on anything. In fact, I think sometimes it's my tendency to not want to turn down experiences that perhaps lead me to some difficult places, but I love being able to look back and say I tried. And there's always something to learn from taking those chances... even if it's how to be graceful in falling.

So yeah, I'm hoping that I have everything I need for the trip... I wasn't planning on cramming my suitcase at 1AM. I'm such a planner, so this last minute packing thing is definitely not my forte. The bad thing about our house (besides the ghosts that must be what keeps our iron gate from ever being anything but temperamental) is that it creaks and squeaks at every turn. It's definitely not your friend when you've had a late night out and want to hide it (not me though) and it surely wasn't last night when I was rummaging through my closet trying to find that perfect mix of clothes for the trip home. Sorry roommates... I didn't plan on moving in at the office yesterday.

I'm missing the big feast. The Domestic Goddess herself is cooking her finest this evening, complete with Cornish hen. Question of the day: does anyone know if there's multiple types of hen that are commonly used in cooking? Seems like you always hear about Cornish hen. If anyone cares to enlighten me, that would be superb.

Back to impending travels... I haven't been to the 'vegas since May, when I was en route to Italy. I'm looking forward to the trip... nothing but downtime ahead. It is so strange still to think I'm coming "home" to a different home for the first time in my life. Also NMC, who usually is the ringleader for all things reunion-esque is going to be with her in-laws. On one hand, it'll be nice to have no reason to head out. On the other hand, it means that much longer before I see my AL posse.

I'm signing off to wrap up those lose ends here, before I have to hop on the train and fight what has promised to be a massive horde of people at the airport. This time, though, I've left all my crazy liquids at home so I won't have to dump any of my precious goods (sniff sniff... I still miss that Duane Reede hand sanitizer... ). Miss TX Dem, if they go for my MAC, they're going down ;-)


Sunday, November 12, 2006

one long, long day...

It's been one long day... that's for sure. Well, I guess it's technically a new day, but at almost 3:30 AM, who feels like getting technical? There are some days that seem to have lasted an eternity, and days that just seem to fly by... and I don't think there's anything wrong with either extreme...

So the ones that never end though... just because they're long and perhaps painful in spurts, doesn't mean you don't realize important things over the course of them.

Unfortunately, I had a wreck today in my beautiful brand new car, with only some 150 miles on it. Yes, it was a small fender-bender, and not to make this poast oh to drama-esque it was a stressful ordeal none-the-less. I definitely learned that my almost two years of not driving equates to what should have been a mandatory minimum something-or-other hold on my license to roam about the greater DC metro area.

In all seriousness though, I do realize I think I pushed it too far this time. I think I wanted to jump from being the WMATA trail-limited to the one who knows no bounds a little too suddenly. I am thankful though...

For starters, I definitely haven't lost sight of the reason I have lived without a car for almost two years... I don't have to have a car. Some people don't have the luxury of living so close to such a great network of public transportation, so I should consider myself blessed. Blessed that it's a luxury, and blessed that it's something I've been able to afford to elect to indulge in. In the midst of everything around me, I'm happy to say I haven't lost that perspective.

Two, I have so many friends and people supporting me that how can I let something as little as this keep my focus off of all that I have been blessed with. As easy as it is to let something like this make you want to just feel sorry for yourself, I have to remember that the place I find myself is a world apart from the place I was just two short years ago. I'm so happy where I am.

Can a bent piece of plastic really mean my life is not where it needs to be? Is it annoying? Heck yes. But is my world over? Between that and a couple of crushed, cemented icky eggs, I have to look and say no, I think I'm still ok. In the end - yes, I'm still ok.

Thanks Ms. WT for getting me out this evening. Great time, and definitely much needed. Thank you, wonderful firemen of L'Enfant Plaza. Your bumper ripping skills are fanastic, bar none, and my hat's off to you. To the countless others who patiently listened to me as I was quite a bit wrattled and freaked out, gave me a warm hug, shared some cheesecake... you get a nod as well.

And even better props to DC. I'm so happy to be in a world where things don't revolve around my car... novel concept, it's all about the people. And yes, the people here... them, I love. They might not all understand the beauty of grits and sweet tea, but they're pretty darn fine.

The great thing is that as much as I love my car (and yes, as my bank account can attest, I do so love that bumper-less car), I'd love being here if my transportation mode were to revert 100% to my two legs. As the night (haha I guess morning) is upon us, with a glass of cold water in hand, a toast to DC, a toast to friends... no matter what, I'm not going to lose that glimpse of reality.

Monday, November 06, 2006

i do not like green eggs and ham

Overall, it was a good weekend. It began on Friday with a Happy Hour Sarah and I organized. We had a great turnout and it was so nice to just chill with some friends after a long and pretty stressful week at work. As the group thinned out to mainly girls, we did have a younger group of guys decend like vultures. They were let's say a little less than socially suave. I loved that the Fashionista recognized one of them as a guy who always tries to pick up her friends at Mille n' Al's, and she called him on it. It was a riot. In a city the size of DC, it's refreshing to know that guys like that can begun to be recognized and called out on it. Perfect. We did get the randomest compliment of sorts from them... as they told us (proudly) that we were the "antithesis of bitches". Nice. Rico. Suave.

Our heat was still out on Friday, which made for a chilly end to Friday! It got into the 20's, and Sarah and I found ourselves shivering a bit. Saturday morning we'd had enough, and had to call again to say pleeeeeeeease send someone to fix our heat before we lose fingers, toes, and anything else to frost-bite! I thought it was a perfect time though to put my car to use for a well-needed (haha, if you saw my closet you'd say I'm using the term need here pretty loosely) trip to that oasis in the "burbs" - Tyson's Corner.

I was in pretty good spirits (albeit a bit chilly) until I walked up to my lovely new vehicle, adorned with two strategic eggs - one centered on the back window and one oh so nicely placed on the front left-hand door, clearly meant to be a lovely present for me. To add an ironic twist, let me reiterate how much I despise eggs. If it isn't in a cake or some other fashion where it's somewhat undetected, I can't deal. I hate the smell, the consistency, the taste... ewwwwww... and to find my car in a sticky, dried egg bath was not something that made my heart warm with joy. Let me just say for the record, the next time I have one of my hunches, I need to go check things out. I keep having these gut feelings and when I don't see what's up, I end up wishing I had. I kept feeling like last week I needed to go and check and make sure the car was ok, since I'm not used to the idea of having a vehicle that sits outside of my line of sight for a vast majority of the time. I decided I just needed to stop worrying last week, so I didn't go. Argh. I'm assuming it happened on Tuesday on Halloween. Kids. Lame. Do they have nothing better to do? Anyhow...

I decided that some stupid kids with no lives weren't going to rain on my much anticipated shopping spree of sorts to Tyson's Corner. The plan was to hit a few main spots and then head back home to (lame, lame) do some work. I was very excited to see the Mango store that had opened up WAS the store I loved so much from studying abroad in Spain. Man, watch out checking account -- this is going to be a blow. I didn't go too overboard, but I did come back with quite a few fun purchases. I was pretty pleased. It helped to make it a little less painful that I stayed in and worked on refining market matches for work (are you excited? I'm sure you guys think that sounds pretty thrilling!). I did watch some Grey's Anatomy though while I was getting the job done, which was nice.

Yesterday I went to church and then went out to Target (2x in one week - this is strange territory) to buy some weapons to anti-egg my car. The car wash I took it to on Sunday did a pretty good job, but there was egg all inside the door panels, so there was more work to be done. Yes, I was all scrunched under the car in the middle of Constitution Avenue. See, I am committed to my car! There's one spot where it erroded a little of the door panel. I'm going to have to take it in to see if they can do anything for it -- just want to make sure my brand new car doesn't start rusting. I'm trying to have a good attitude about it and remember there's lots of worse things that can happen, but it's still a major bummer.

And now it's Monday... another week begins... hmmmm and what lies ahead??

Thursday, November 02, 2006

on the road again

Today's going to be a great day -- I can just feel it. And, if it doesn't pan out to be so, it's definitely not because it didn't get off to a great start. I hit "shuffle" on my iPod and what should come on first? Cartman singing "O Holy Night". I was laughing the whole way to the metro.

It's a big day here at work -- we have a pretty important meeting later this afternoon and I'm taking a momentary break as I enjoy my morning latte (I'm still on a bad roll here -- I need to get off the coffee kick!) before diving into the mountain of papers surrounding my keyboard. Hopefully today will be a success... we shall see!

It's been an eventful week though. My car FINALLY arrived on Monday. I'm so excited to have a set of wheels again. I was a bit anxious that it would be awkward driving again and that I would be so turned around trying to drive in the city. I was comforted to see that it felt just like I'd been driving daily for oh, say the past two years and I was able to drive straight home into the city with no problems. Pretty cool. Of course, where did I go directly from the dealership? That great wonderful place... Target Oh Tarzjay, Tarzjay... how I'd missed you!

I'm still contemplating what I'm going to do with my day on Saturday. It most definitely involves a certain silver Honda Fit and venturing to somewhere probably in Far-Away-Ville-VA... definitely somewhere that's NOT metro accessible! Seriously though, I'm trying to find somewhere slightly outside of the city to head to do some shooting. After close to two years of being limited to shots in the city, I'm looking forward to a change in scenery. I'm cutting it close, but hopefully I'll be able to still catch a trace of leaves before the trees set into their naked winter state.

Halloween was fabulous. I don't think I ever put this much effort into any year's Halloween costume as a child, which is kind of funny. Sassy and I went to the Halloween event at the Decatur House, thanks to the Fashionista's kind invite. It was a great place to start off the evening! Only catch was I had to get ready at work... (for those of you who haven't seen where I work, it's a pretty big building, so pretty good chance you can't escape unseen!). I did manage to slide out with only a couple of people catching a glimpse of Pebbles in all her glory. I didn't realize there was going to be a costume contest there. Woohoo Pebbles came in second (I was beaten out by an Angry Glacier, who was a bit lecturing when we asked her to explain her costume. No, we're not ignorant. Yes, we do know what global warming is. No, we didn't automatically realize that an Angry Glacier = melting glacier = protect mother earth. We can appreciate it though.)

Afterwards we headed over to Georgetown. Why did no one tell me Georgetown on Halloween is almost as bad as Mardi Gras in New Orleans?? I told Sassy at least no one had to pull us up to crowd surf over the crowd from us getting smothered (yep, that was part of my Mardi Gras experience - hah), but it was pretty close! It was interesting to see all the bizarre folks out and about though. Definitely amusing.

Anyone have any amusing Halloween stories? I've definitely been enjoying all the pics I've seen haha.

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