The ins and outs of a young library media specialist's life. Rock, rock on.

Thursday, May 31, 2007

All In A Day's Work

You know those cans of compressed air they sell so that you can clean out electronic equipment without taking it apart? Yes, well I ordered a bunch of them to clean out the computer keyboards here in the library. Considering they hadn't been cleaned in the two years I've had them I figured it was time to step it up and rid them of dust before the summer came along and I waited another year to get it done. So yesterday I started spraying them out and I found all manner of dirt, dust, hair, fingernails, dried boogers, and crumbs flying every which way out of those keyboards. I was more than a little disgusted; it almost made me wish I had never decided to clean.

Anyway, as I was diligently blasting air a couple of students noticed me (the air is surprisingly loud coming out of the can) and they were fascinated. Seriously, I've never seen them so enthralled in anything, not even weepuls. They were rapt with attention, their eyes never leaving the can. Then they saw all the junk flying out of the keyboards and they started cheering! They were so happy that I was cleaning with a can of air that they actually gave me a cheer. They wanted to know every detail about the air: how much was in a can, how did Endust get the air in there, did the can come with the little red spray nozzle or did I buy it separately, why did the can get freezing cold after I had sprayed it for a while? I felt like it could've been a real teaching moment. Unfortunately, I didn't know many of the answers (how do they get it in there?), so instead I made answers up about CO2 cartridges and sending people up to the Arctic Circle to catch the freezing wintry air specially for the cans. What? I couldn't disappoint those fervent eyes.

About two minutes after the wide-eyed children left a whole other troop of kids showed up demanding to see the Arctic air blasts for themselves. I knew if I didn't quell their curiosity I would end up with hordes of kids in here after school begging me to put on an Endust show for them so I tried to play it down a little, demonstrating how boring it actually was to spray out the keyboards. At that precise moment, a giant spider corpse flew out from between the keys, landed on one of the kids bare arms, and was followed by a chorus of shrieks (mostly mine) and running frantically around in circles.

I thought the kids would be traumatized enough to refrain from any further cleaning questions. Oh ho ho, was I wrong! I've heard kids that weren't even there describing it as "totally awesome" and "so scary". Apparently, the spider incident spread like wildfire and it seems every kid in the school now wants to clean computer keyboards for me.

On the bright side, I've run out of electronics to clean and I have a variety of students available to do my dirty work for me. Score.

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

On A Scale From One to Ten...

...With ten being the lamest, most dorktastic thing you can imagine:

How lame is it that I caught myself Googling the phrase "how do I move boulders in Pokemon Diamond for Nintendo DS" last night at 10:30 p.m.?

Also, that I became super excited this morning when I learned that they are making Ender's Game into a movie?

Sigh. On second thought, don't answer that. I don't think I need confirmation of my nerd status so early on a Wednesday morning.

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Three Days Later

Dear People of the Internet,

I hope that you all enjoyed the lovely three day weekend. Although our plans got shifted slightly (doesn't that always happen? I mean really, why do I bother to make actual plans?), we ended up having a great weekend. In fact, I felt so relaxed after my three days of fun in the sun that I actually didn't mind returning to school. Of course it doesn't hurt that we only have three weeks left here, but whatevs. What I'm saying is: my head is back in it's happy place and all is well. Good one, Memorial Day.

So Saturday I dragged a tired Christopher out of bed bright and early to begin what I thought would be a two-hour drive up to the White Mountains in NH. Apparently I didn't think to factor in holiday weekend traffic, but it took us more like three and a half hours to finally reach the outlets where we were meeting my cousins. It was so worth the traffic though- we had so much fun just hanging out, joking around, and in general being loud. We decided to do a quick lunch at Horsefeathers before heading out for our out-of-doors adventures. I had been there before and remembered it being fairly touristy (i.e. fake white birch trees "growing" in planters, plastic molds of the Old Man in the Mountain), but despite the questionable decor the food was quite tasty. While we were eating we realized that the Flume Gorge that we thought we'd be hiking was actually another hour from where we were and by then we were mighty sick of the inside of my Civic. So we decided to just start driving in the direction of the Alpine Slide and see what trails we came across.

And yay for us, we ended up finding the Arethusa Falls trail. It was about 1.6 miles in to get to the actual falls and we were feeling pretty good by the time we got up there. The trail was great- beautiful and breezy and surprisingly non-bug infested. And the falls were amazing. I mean, I've been to Niagara and it's pretty and all, but you definitely don't get to stand at the bottom and walk around in the misty pools of water. Anyway, we city folk made it all the way up and out unscathed. It was like City Slickers, minus the cattle roping and quips from Billy Crystal. We then headed back to the hotel to reward ourselves with beverages of the adult type. What about the Alpine Slide, you ask? It was closed! I know. We were so bummed. Well, not so much Chris, but the rest of us were.

Anyway, after the seven of us had a lovely dinner (creamy asiago orzo with lobster, anyone?) it was about 10:30 p.m. and while my cousins were all staying the night at the hotel, C and I did not have a room. And in fact, there were no rooms left to be had. So I steeled myself for the long ride home, C bought me a coffee and it was Boston or bust. And hey, I only got pulled over once! (I was speeding. The roads are very winding and the speed limit is constantly going from 35 to 55. It wasn't my fault! Ok, it was a little bit my fault. But I wasn't going that fast! And yes, he made me do the little "follow the light with your eyes" test, and we were totally fine. I didn't even get a ticket.) We made it home by 1:30 and it was lights out.

Sunday we went to a cookout, the weather was once again great and the food delicious. Oh, and we also tried our hand at making ice cream. Let's just say it was tasty enough for us to eat it, but we won't be opening an ice cream parlor any time soon. Monday was pretty lazy as well- we had dinner with friends, rocked some DDR, and I played about three hours of Pokemon Diamond on my DS. I don't know if that makes me lamest librarian you know or the coolest, but I will tell you this: I have never once even seen a Pokemon cartoon but that game is retardedly addictive. In fact, I almost wish I was playing it right now. Work is for suckers.

Weekend in review: complete. I'll post pictures on ye olde flickr when I get a mo' and you can check out the weekend madness for yourself. Hope you're all rested and relaxed.

Fondest wishes,

Oh, and PS: I was just cataloging a copy of Dear Mr. Henshaw, by Beverly Cleary, hence the letter format. Remember that book? I swear we had to read it like 53 times between 3rd and 5th grades. I had vague memories of hating it, I just flipped through it and realized why: it sucks. A lot.

Thursday, May 24, 2007

TT On The Weekend To Come

Thirteen Things about NPW's Upcoming Weekend (and Friday)

1. Okay, so really this should have been a post for Friday since I'm about to talk about the upcoming weekend, but there's no such thing as a Friday Thirteen (it would be totally jinxed and all), so here we go. Be forewarned: I may not post tomorrow, so get your crying done now. Yes, yes, I'll miss you too. Moving on.

2. Tonight is the big Open House where parents come to view student work, berate talk to teachers, and of course, buy things at the Scholastic Book Fair. Note that I said "things" and not "books"; the kiddos are far more interested in the foolish little bendy pencils and foul-scented highlighters than they are in the books. And while they may be money makers, I can tell you from firsthand experience that toys and middle schoolers do not mix. For example, they are selling these super long erasers that look like colorful Twizzlers. And do you think students are using these to carefully erase errant pencil marks from their homework? No. They are using them to whip each other on the arms, legs, face, and neck. I had the following conversation this morning:

Me: Bradley, if I see you using that eraser you just bought for anything other than erasing, it will be mine.
Bradley: (pauses, looks at the eraser, looks at the friend he was about to whip, looks at me) Will I get my money back?

Also, who thought it was a good idea to teach kids that huffing banana-scented highlighters is the correct use for them? Sweet Baby Jesus, I feel like Argus Filch confiscating Fanged Frisbees up in here.

3. Open House tonight promises to be a bundle of fun; there's going to be a cookout! Yesterday the entire staff of the school received an email from the Principal asking for volunteers to "grill his tube steaks". I'm assuming he meant there will be hot dogs?

4. Tomorrow will be more Book Fair, more inventory checklists, more work in general. I'm pretty sure that the only good thing about tomorrow will be getting home from work and napping luxuriously on the couch, despite the Crow Children squawking next door. Oh, and it's Date Night!

5. Date Night = fun. Fun = Pirates of the Caribbean. Therefore, Date Night = Pirates of the Caribbean. And hopefully a lot more relaxing because I sure need it.

6. Saturday we agreed to meet my cousins and their respective spouses up in the White Mountains for a bit of hiking at the beautiful Flume Gorge. I'm pretty excited about the trip- I haven't been hiking since last summer and I haven't been to the Gorge since I was young. I do love the mountains. Rock on with your bad self, Granite State. We also have planned a trip to the infamous Alpine Slide. If any of you out there have never been on an Alpine Slide, I highly recommend it. No, in fact, I demand you seek one out- they are one of life's greatest thrills. Unless the idea of a concrete luge down a mountainside freaks you out. Then you might want to stay away.

C has vowed not to partake in the Alpine Sliding fun as it involves a ride up the mountain in a chair lift and he is a wee bit frightened of heights. Or, more accurately, of falling from heights.

7. Actually, I'm not sure why I'm not more traumatized by the idea of the Alpine Slide after the great Sliding Debacle of '84, wherein my overzealous father decided that the use of the brakes provided on the luge was unnecessary, thus launching the both of us off the cart onto the concrete path, wherein the concrete path felt that my skin was unnecessary and scraped a good portion right off my body.

8. Saturday we will also have dinner on the mountain, which I like to say out loud when anyone asks what I'm doing this weekend because I think it sounds very important. "We will be having dinner on the mountain." I would like to say that the dinner will include drinks, but I will likely be the D.D. and it's about a two hour drive back to the city. C, however, will be free to get loose on the drinks, and he'll probably need it after I drag him down the Slide of Death with me that afternoon.

9. Sunday there will be a grand gala cookout for my cousin Gabriel's 30th birthday, which will be a treat since he and his wife live life in the fast lane down in NYC and we only see them periodically throughout the year. Of course, it's supposed to rain, so the cook
out may be more of a cookin, but whatever. Point: there will be food. That I didn't have to cook.

10. I'm kind of hoping that Monday will be a day of rest. Like the seventh day, only not. It's not every day that I get to spend lounging around reading books. Oh, wait...

11. Actually, Monday being Memorial Day and all I'm sure there must be some type of festivities going on somewhere, right? I mean, what's Memorial Day for? No, seriously, I just forgot what Memorial Day was for. What are we supposed to be remembering on Monday the 28th?

Oh! Right! Soldiers. That died. Sometimes I frighten myself with how little my brain retains. What would I do without wikipedia?

12. Anyway, are there fireworks on Memorial Day? There must be, somewhere, right? I guess if all else fails we could drive back up to the beach in NH, buy some fireworks, and then illegally set them off somewhere in Massachusetts. Although I don't really fancy the idea of spending time in the ER after we predictably blow off our fingers with bottle rockets. What about music? There's got to be loads of people that want to sing about soldiers being killed off.

Aren't I so patriotic?

13. And that will be my weekend, folks. It's supposed to be super nice out today and tomorrow, semi-nice out on Saturday, and blowsville on Sunday and Monday. Which sounds about right for May in New England. Hope you have fantabulous weekends and unless I get a stroke of sheer writing genius tomorrow I'll see you for our regularly scheduled programming on Tuesday.

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Adieu College Kids, Bonjour Neighbors

Last weekend Chris and I noted with a bit of relief that the long rows of moving trucks double-parked all over the City of Boston must signify the mass exodus of college students from their ratty apartments back to wherever the hell they hail from. Good riddance, undergraduate folk! Until September, may you grace your homelands with your drunken shouting and not my doorstep.

Does it seem as though I am still bitter about my Walden experience of Monday? Because I am.

Anyway, Chris and I discussed how with all the school kids gone our neighborhood would likely become very quiet and serene for the next few months. We fantasized about how a bunch of young professionals might move in; friendly folk that we could smile at and have the occasional chat, and then go on our merry (and quiet) ways. The trees were blooming, the two nasty girls next door had moved on, and our street was looking quite cheerful.

Except we were wrong, again. What we didn't realize was that the sunny, warm weather meant that it was time for the 4-month long block party: all white trash, all the the time. It seems our invite was lost in the mail, but that doesn't stop our neighbors from bringing out the lawn chairs and plastic stools, the beer cozies and the styrofoam coolers full of Natty Light, the packs of Newports and chew, and plopping themselves right down on the sidewalk every afternoon from 3 p.m. (when I get home from work- hell, they could be there well before 3 for all I know) to well past dark. All of them. In a row, in front of their houses. Calling to each other, cackling with laughter through emphysema lungs, and bellowing at their half-naked wayward children running in the street. All through my very open windows, which let in the breezy sunshine in addition to their blue collar cavorting.

Yesterday afternoon I lay down on my couch to try to do a little reading and/or napping before I set out for a long walk. The instant my head touched the soft pillow I heard an odd cawing shriek. What the hell? Where there crows outside? A band of wild crows? I peeked out the window to see a child squatting in his diaper in front of his drunk mother with his face all screwed up, letting out a steady flow of outraged screams at constant intervals. Four second scream, two second pause. Four second scream, two second pause. I thought, in my absurd naivete, that the noise was so irritating that surely someone would stop him quickly in some way. Wrong! Stupid NPW. Everyone just sat slumped in their molded plastic WalMart chairs staring stupidly at the boy and occasionally attempting to make feeble conversation around him.

How long could he last at this screaming game? Longer than I could. I threw on some shoes and bolted out the door for that walk before I could test the limits of his endurance. Come back, college kids! At least when it's cold outside the neighbors contain their Crow Children to their basements.

On a happier note, here is a picture of the Boston skyline from the Tufts library roof- for Jenn, who misses the city.

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Getting There

As of today, four weeks left. For real. That means four more Monday mornings (although, next Monday morning is Memorial Day- this librarian gets to stay in bed!), four more classes with the illustrious 8th graders who will be moving on to high school, four more team meetings, four more outside lunches.

I finally caught up with all my outstanding orders and placed orders for next year. I finally (albeit grudgingly) wrote out a check for the $55 to attend the end-of-year retirement party- that better be some damn good chicken, is all I'm sayin'. I finally finished prowling through classrooms in search of missing overheads and slide projectors, finally hung all the posters for the book fair, finally recycled all the crap that's come out of my mailbox over the last three months.

And I feel like I'm getting there. Mentally, I've pretty much already checked out of this place. Realistically, there's still a lot to get done before I call it good enough and pack up for the summer. I've been feeling a little overwhelmed with all the new responsibilities that will go along with my job next year, which are numerous and time-consuming. I've been trying to square away a schedule for my summer job and get information on the classes I'm supposed to be taking over the break. I've been thinking about the fact that the school committee just offered us a 0% raise for next year, and what I'll do if we're forced to strike. I've been penciling in birthdays and party invites and Frisbee and school activities like people can't get enough of the NPW.

As you can see, I'm all in a state. In fact, I've been so flustered lately that in my state of unawareness last night I started to bring laundry down to the basement after dark. Alone. Only after I peered down into the cavernous black hole at the bottom of the stairs did my zombie fears return in full force and I flew back up the stairs and slammed the door shut behind me in a very dramatic fashion. Because seriously: that scene in 28 Weeks Later when the kids return to their old house and find their mother hiding in the attic room? That would definitely happen to me. And I so do not need the Rage virus right now.

Monday, May 21, 2007

15 Things

Friends, my head has not been in the right place lately. I have this constant feeling of being out of sorts, like I'm unsure of how to be myself anymore. This feeling has it's own ebb and flow of course, but I'll admit it's been kind of disconcerting. The last year has brought with it many changes- some amazing, some not quite so welcome. Today I decided that I was well overdue for a mental health day and I set out to enjoy a leisurely day at Walden Pond, famous home to Thoreau and the filming site of On Golden Pond. I packed up a book and a snack and some sunscreen and I headed for the woods for some deep contemplation re-reading of Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince. Unfortunately, it appeared as though every college campus in the state of Massachusetts (and believe me, there are a lot of them), also decided that today was Mental Health Day '07 and also chose Walden as their get-away spot.

And in college, "get-away" means "sneaking vodka in Nalgene bottles and shouting and swearing while throwing oneself into a frigid lake in May". Needless to say, it was not the relaxing jaunt I had been hoping for. But I did get some very pretty pictures- if you'd like to see them you can email me, I'll send you the link to my flickr account. I'm far too lazy to post them in both places, you see.

Anyway, Jenn had a great Post Secret type of blog entry today and I thought I'd follow suit in the spirit of being cathartic. Here are 15 things that I wish to tell different people without naming any names.
  1. I'm still so angry and disappointed with you, I don't know that I'll ever not be angry. But I'm trying.
  2. I wanted you to be somebody else.
  3. You're a better writer than I am; sometimes I'm jealous.
  4. You've always been there for me and I appreciate that more than you'll ever know.
  5. Years later I'm still trying to understand how you could give up your family members so easily. I cannot understand your feelings but at least now I can accept them.
  6. Sometimes it's difficult to be your friend when we have such different views of the world. But I'm glad we are; it's good to have your beliefs shaken up once in a while.
  7. I hope our friendship continues to grow and I'm really very glad you showed up at this point in my life.
  8. I'm sorry that things did not work out the way we thought they would. I'm sorry we didn't try harder. I'm sorry we left things the way we did.
  9. I never wanted to get to know you but you've made it really hard to hate you.
  10. I wish we didn't live so far apart. I miss you.
  11. I secretly hope to run into you someday so that you can see how awesome I am compared to you.
  12. You are the person I turn to when I feel like there's nobody and nothing else to make me feel better and you never ask for anything in return. I don't tell you enough how important that is to me.
  13. I find you to be silly and immature, but sometimes I need that.
  14. I hope you're happy and content, even if you wouldn't wish the same for me.
  15. You are my love. You are my favorite. You are my home, and my heart, and you represent all the best things in my life. I want you to know that you mean more to me than I'll ever be able to express in a silly blog post. And I'll tell you that until forever.

Friday, May 18, 2007


I'm not feeling particularly verbose today. Apart from yesterday's amusement over Latawnya's Naughty Horse Tales and an actual good episode of Lost on Wednesday, this week kind of blew. But! As of today I officially have four weeks (and two days) to go before I am relieved from duty. School is a battlefield, people. A metaphorical one, maybe, but still: battles. On a field.

Today we were invited to bring our classes down for a "musical presentation" by some high school kids. As soon as the lights went down and the high schoolers started singing some jazzy rendition of a cabaret song I honestly thought I was going to need to resort to using the librarian death glares and sending students out to sit in the hallway. Instead, the 8th graders were rapt with attention and I found that it was myself I had to stop from snorting with laughter. Am I evil? Possibly. But those g.d. high schoolers took themselves very seriously and it was really difficult to concentrate when all I could think of that terrible movie High School Musical (which we thought would be hilarious to rent and watch while drinking; it was not) and other, even worse, musicals like From Justin to Kelly and West Side Story. Anyway, I was relieved that the kiddos liked it because I would have been hard pressed to stop them from laughing about something I found so ludicrous myself.

The rest of this week has been sucked up by inventory (which makes me cry inside) and allergies (which make me cry on the outside). I missed Book Club last night, I was too tired and tetchy from a week spent searching for random overhead projectors to haul my ass to Southie. I regretted not going as soon as it was too late to make it- but then I fell asleep and had strange dreams about having mouth surgery in my aunt's kitchen with an X-Acto knife, so I guess that probably means I needed the rest.

Tonight we've been invited to a couple of soirees. We'll see which one sounds appealing; by the time Chris gets home from work it'll probably be limited to whoever stays out the latest. And tomorrow: 28 Weeks Later. I need some zombies, yo. They're the only thing that can pull this week into a plus.

Lata, playas.

Thursday, May 17, 2007

This Just In: Horses of the World Form D.A.R.E Group

Maybe you've already seen this, but I am reposting it here anyway in case you missed it. Why? Because it just made me laugh so hard I almost peed, sitting all alone here in the library. God, I love books.

Oh, and just in case you were wondering? I don't own a copy in my library; I checked already. But I will own one, just you wait and see. My particular favorites? Illustrations on pages 22 and 28. Check it.

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Why, Middle School? Why?!

I went for a walk yesterday afternoon after I got out of work. The sun was shining, it was warm and breezy, and Mother Nature was calling my name. Little did I know, it was actually Satan himself posing as Mother Nature calling my name; as soon as I hit the road I started feeling ill. My head was pounding, I was sneezing my face off, and I was uncomfortably hot.

Either I am dreadfully out of shape or that damn Claritin is worthless. And I've been going to the gym, so don't try telling me it's the former. Also, Frisbee starts next week and I can already tell it's going to be quite amusing wheezing my hay fevered, winter-weighted self up and down the field. I'm keeping my fingers crossed that this Zyrtec that Chris brought home is going to be the magic allergy pill to get me feelin' all kinds of wonderful.

Yeah, if you can't tell? I'm kind of a mess this week.

This morning I also broke up my first fight. It wasn't really a real fight, like the kind in the teen high school movies where people get smashed into lockers and onlookers chant and cheer them on. It was more like a little Asian kid quietly punching a scrawny white kid in the back of the head behind the library stacks. I happened to be walking through and caught them, barked out orders for them to go sit outside the Assistant Principal's office, and had a little freak out as to what might have happened if I hadn't caught them. Oh yeah, and I also sent another kid down there because he was rude and disrespectful.

For real: don't mess with the NPW today, kiddos. I've had about enough. Like, enough for the rest of the school year. Which is only five weeks away. Do you think I'll make it?

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Drudgery and Rants

Paying bills makes me miserable. I hate money and everything to do with money, unless it involves having unlimited amounts available to me. Unfortunately, this has yet to happen. When I start to think about how much money I actually owe that I will have to pay back in my lifetime (which happens at least once a month, when I look at my bank statement), I start to get that fearful, anxious, dread feeling, like a dull ache at the back of my brain. My brain simultaneously kicks into overdrive, concocting schemes of how to get out of paying my overwhelming student loans that involve elaborate staged deaths all shrouded in mystery, and causes the other part of my brain to simply shut down, making it difficult to concentrate on said bills that need paying.

I've been pretty good about everything being timely and balanced. I try not to live beyond my means, I haven't taken a true vacation anywhere in years. Granted, I also didn't work last summer, which meant I had no extra income (and I sure could've used it), but I'm still glad I took that freebie couple of months and did what I wanted to do. This summer I'll be working at an athletic club, mindless and cheerful work that I won't mind doing for 20 hours a week. And of course, the school still pays me through the summer, so that's a check in the bank every two weeks regardless of how many hours I put in at the gym.

So why is it that I still always feel behind? Plus, the end of the school year always brings expenses- birthdays, retirement parties, showers, weddings, etc. I hate feeling resentful about paying $55 to go to a party celebrating a friend's retirement after 35 years teaching, but I do. I hate trying to cram in as many graduate credits as I can every year so that I can sloooowly climb the ranks of the school pay scale. I hate having to worry about being in a union contract year and school committee meetings where the town declares they have no money for raises for the teachers, let alone a cost of living increase. What other profession would be forced to to accept a 1% pay raise every year? What is that, an extra $20 a month?

I hate feeling like I'll never be able to buy a house in this area because there is nothing affordable and it's impossible to save. I'm sad that the area I love so much is so far out of reach it's insane.

I also hate feeling unhappy with an educational system that could be so great, if only it got the recognition it deserved rather than being glossed over while the big money goes into weaponry and warfare.

Yes, I chose to go to graduate school and I took out the loans. But why should I have a lifetime sentence of bills just because I wanted to better myself? Why should I owe more than my actual yearly salary in student loans, just so that I can meet state standards for my job? Like I'm supposed to just shrug and say, "Oh well, at least I'm considered 'highly qualified'!"

I think I should have been born independently wealthy or something.

God, I hate bills day.

Monday, May 14, 2007

That's A Lot of Pictures!

You asked for it! I put some real time and effort into this post and all the picture-taking. They didn't all come out as nice as I would've liked, but I was feeling the pressure of getting them done and I spent most of the weekend in New Hampshire, which greatly limited my photo time. I think I got everything people asked for- with the exception of the signs from my favorite haunts and a few lovely pictures of Boston, which I will definitely for sure get this week. I promise! And thanks to everyone who played along; this "assignment" gave me something to concentrate on while the Boy was in far-off lands. (Well, this assignment, and the benefit I went to with my mum where I won a $150 gas card and a pair of sweet Kate Spade sunglasses!)

So without further ado...

For Stefanie, my comforter and sheet set that is currently on my bed. I'm sorry to say it's a plain white down comforter- I do have a few different duvet covers, even one that matches this leaf print set, but when it starts to get warm out I leave them off.

For Aly, my favourite place to relax. (Hee!)

For Kelli, my morning ritual in a modest PG. Shower and products first!

Breakfast second. I don't normally have juice AND a shake, but I brought some juice for lunch and I pack up some cereal for an after-school snack.

And finally, my hair. Like it really makes a difference if I do it or not- in the humidity it always ends up looking like I just sat in a steam room anyway.

For moogan, the sorry inside of my fridge. I couldn't find any weird science experiments in there (besides Kelly LeBrock, duh). Please note, however, the giant can of Steel Reserve- the only thing you can clearly make out. I think there is also some pasta sauce, feta, ginger-echinacea lemonade, a couple bottles of wine, raspberry preserves, some diet Coke products, and some other things I can't quite make out.

The tea pantry.

For ween, the shoe room. And for the record, you don't have to tell me- I know I have shoe issues. The rest are thankfully in the attic in a bin where you can't see them (or the extent of my madness).

The newest acquisition: rainbow skull Rocket Dogs!

Also for ween: the view from my front window. Not so lovely, but at least the trees are finally blooming and can hide some of the neighbors from my sight.

For those who wanted to see my library: my office.

Who loves the pink and orange combo? I do, I do!

And finally, for l sass, the guts of my purse. I might also have a teensy problem with buying lip products.

Oh, and hey! If you click on them you can see them in larger format. More photos to come once I can get my allergy-ridden ass into the great outdoors to my favorite shops and walk routes!

Friday, May 11, 2007

Happy Returns

Happy Friday! On Monday I mentioned that the weekend had been kind of a downer. You see, my Mom's cat had somehow escaped from the house and no one could find him. Being a house cat and all, he didn't have any tags. Why would he, right? He's never been outside in the 6 years we've had him. This is her youngest cat, her baby, if you will, and it's quite possible she loves that cat more than she loves the very children that are made up from her own DNA.

Needless to say, she was kind of a wreck on Sunday. So Chris and I headed up to New Hampshire to attempt a rescue mission, which basically amounted to us walking around an acre of woods shaking a treat container and calling his name. We didn't find him, even when we broke out the tuna.

Monday went by, then Tuesday and Wednesday. My Dad kept insisting he must have been hurt or attacked or else he would have returned to the house. While this wasn't the most sensitive observation, it was quite possible- the NH woods have mad wild animals that would love a soft little domestic animal for dinner. Fisher cats, bears, foxes, hawks, owls... it's a wonder I feel safe enough to get from the car to the front door, really. Oh, and did I mention the monkeys? Anyway, my sister and I consoled ourselves by imagining Jake on a little adventure, a la Milo and Otis. My mother hung posters in every conceivable place in my small hometown, she and my Dad pestered the neighbors with pictures of him, they even loaded up his image on the local cable access channel with a REWARD sign. No luck.

Both Chris and I despaired a little bit of his ever returning. Then on Wednesday afternoon I got the phone call from my mother. She was crying so hard I couldn't really understand her; I thought she must have found his little body somewhere, ravaged by evil animals of the woods. Finally she yelled, "Jake came back! He's back!" and then cried some more.

She had heard a cat crying outside. She ran out to see who was making it, and found him meowing under the porch!

So happy to have you back, Jake! And not a scratch on you. Now please never do that again- my mother's blood pressure can only go so high before her head explodes.

In other news, the forecast for this weekend is looking bleak. The Christopher left today for a mini-break to Rochester and I will miss him. I wish I was going with him but I have about 12 million errands to run and such and there was no way of missing a Friday and a Monday during the last couple weeks of school. So tonight I'll be at school until 8 doing some random school-related activities. But hello, Rochester people! I'll see you soon, I hope! Saturday will be shopping for Mother's Day and hanging out with some family members (I know, procrastinator!), and Sunday is the big Day of Mothers, where my mother will once again be spoiled rotten by her kids (note: Jake's never bought you something cool, has he, Mom?!), and be treated to a fabulous brunch. Needless to say, I am jealous that C gets to run around having fun all weekend while I'm stuck doing DDR with students and their feckless parents. But at least I get to see my Mama.

Hope you all have a fabulous Friday. I will be posting some pictures for you on Monday; be very excited. Something to look forward to!

Thursday, May 10, 2007

Taking Over, One Blog At A Time

Omigod guys, I like totally got invited to guest blog today over at Funky Carter!!!!! Aren't you like, soooo jealous??!?! I mean, I know I'm, like, really, really awesome and all, but I didn't know how awesome I really really really was until Ace asked me to fill in for him. I told him yeah, totally, I could do that, as long as it didn't involve me going bald and becoming a dork and listening to Jenny Lewis on repeat for 8 hours straight while crying into my Steven Seagal Energy Drink about how I never get any. As long as it didn't involve that, I would totally do it!

No, really; check it out. I wrote stuff over there today instead of here.

And I hope all of you are still thinking of things you'd like to see photographed by yours truly. Believe me, this will be as fun for me as it is for you, I love taking pictures!

Just remember: minds out of the gutter and I'll work my shutter.

Wednesday, May 09, 2007

Cut To The Montage Already

Here's the deal: I am going to be very busy the next few days. I know this, now you know this. So rather than try to come up with something totally hilarious and original for you right now, I am going to instead direct the fun and hilarious back to you.

That's right, it's INTERACTIVE POST time!

Being the voyeur visual learner that I am, I always want to see pictures when I read people's posts. I love pictures of people's rooms, work, themselves, anything that gives me a better insight into the person behind the words. And I thought, maybe you all are like that too! So in the interest of curiosity (as well as giving my ass something to write about today), I am opening up the comment lines. You tell me what you want photos of and I will do my damnedest to post them up here on Friday.

Random example: photo of my dining room table and semi-new orchid.

Awesome blinds, eh? They drive Chris batty, I can tell you. It's the only room in which I have not yet hung drapes. And the orchid is now in a pretty green pot and not in that hideous little clay thing it came in. And now the orchid has about seven pretty flowers, not just two.

Anyway, you get the idea. Of course, I don't think I need to remind anyone to keep this rated PG. Or PG-13, at least. Otherwise, comment away, get creative, have fun.

No, seriously, please make this fun. I may be busy, but I'm bored.

Tuesday, May 08, 2007

Shock and Awe

I was just sitting here quietly, minding my own business, poring over the latest It Girl book, when I happened to glance out the window and saw something that caused me to let out an involuntary shriek. A quiet shriek, but a shriek nonetheless.

My first thought was, "Why is that woman wearing a tumbleweed on her head?". My second thought was, "Wait, is that a woman? It seems to be capable of walking... and it has a purse". And my final thought before I lost consciousness due to shock was something along the lines of, "At least my hair doesn't ever do that."

People, I grew up in New Hampshire. I have seen some bad hair in my day. Hell, I've been to events where there wasn't a single non-offensive haircut in the whole damn place. But this woman... this woman hurt my eyes and she hurt my soul. And for that, I can never forgive her. If only I had any type of artistic skills, I would have immediately drawn her so that I could bring the picture to my next salon visit and emphatically point out what I do NOT want done to my hair. Maybe if I describe it well enough, one of my more artistically inclined friends (Jenn, I'm looking at you) can do an actual drawing. Until then, the best I can provide you with is this:

I know. Please, take a minute to absorb the image before you move on.

So as I was saying, it was mostly her hair that caused me to pass out, but in retrospect it was really the eyebrow/hair combo that pushed me over the edge. What you may or may not be able to tell from my crude MS Paint rendering is that her eyebrows actually looked like moth wings after the moth has been caught in one of those zappers and fried to an electrocuted, burnt mess. However, some of those eyebrow hairs managed to escape the singeing and grew to their full height, i.e. she just combed them right into her hair. And they were curly!

Hold on, I need to catch my breath.

The top half of her "hair" looked as though she went to a dog groomer and asked for their best poodle cut, but the groomer was having an off day and somehow managed to make it completely uneven and also needed to shave down bits where there were mats. The bottom half looked as though she might at some point have had a perm but it didn't quite take and then tree roots started to grow in it. It was also uneven, but in a less disturbing way, almost like it was in its natural state and all it needed was a good watering and she'd be good to go every morning. Some of the tendrils had regenerated where it was dead and sprouted little off-shoots of new curls.

Did I mention it was down past her waist?

I almost had the thought that she must have been involved in some kind of bet where the contestants wanted to see who could go the longest without ever touching their hair, kind of like the time in college when we were on the train in Boston and my friend Megan bet me my train fare that I wouldn't wear a side ponytail the entire trip and I did. Only, the train ride lasted about 10 minutes and this woman had to have been working on this hair for a bare minimum of 10 years, so I was kind of sad for her, but also amazed that she's apparently able to shrug off people's constant stares and stifled gasps without so much as pulling out a comb.

Monday, May 07, 2007

This Little Piggy Went To The Market

This past weekend was a mix of highs and lows, people. But the lows were very low, so I am not going to discuss them until further notice. Just keep your fingers crossed for me that everything turns out okay, hmm? Rather than worrying about things I am attempting to distract myself with a special viewing of Pretty Woman (thanks, OnDemand!) and some mint chip yogurt*.

Onward and upward: remember how I said last week that I was a sucker for cool packaging? No? Well, I don't blame you, that meme was a tad long and my answers were more than a tad boring. Anyway, I'm sorry to admit that it's very true; I will buy anything that looks cool or comes in a pretty package. I'm probably the sole source of income for all those Packaging Design majors at RISD.

When Chris gets the idea in his head that he wants to buy something, he'll spend roughly seven years researching reviews, looking at it in the store, debating with me over brands and prices, wavering, quaffling, and being indecisive. He then purchases something that he has never even mentioned and the cycle ends- until the next time he wants something. I'm almost the opposite, in that I rarely know that I want something until it's right in front of my face, then my impulses take over my fine motor skills and it's in my shopping basket. Basically I'm like a child: easily distracted by bright and shiny objects. So, with the best interests of my adoring public at heart , I am willing to give my completely uneducated and half-formed opinions on said crap so that you may wisely choose what to spend your hard earned Ben Franklin's on. Here are just a few of my recent purchases, none of which I had any idea whether or not they were complete and utter crap until buying them, bringing them home, and using them.

Method Bloq Shaving Cream: I mentioned this one on Friday but I think I owe it to you all to mention it again because this stuff is the devil incarnate. Not only is it terrible for shaving your legs with, it also attracts every mosquito in a 90-mile radius. Looks pretty and smells yummy, but I suggest you put away that $5 for something that will not cause you to curse baby Jesus in the shower every morning for making you so gullible.

Trader Joe's Nourish Spa Shampoo and Conditioner: Once I've dispensed with the morning's shaving torture, I can relax my pretty little head with this little duo of delight. I know the packaging doesn't look like much (nor does the $2.50 price tag), but it smells amazing and will make your hair seem like you just went to the salon... every day. Also, it doesn't have that chemical in it that almost every other shampoo has that dries out your hair. You know the one. Sodium something? Whatevs. It doesn't have that. Yay, Trader Joe's!

Aveda Light Elements Smoothing Fluid: Tiny, pretty little blue bottle. So cute! Must have! Right now! In my bag you go! Here is my credit card! Signing my name... annnnnd I just spent $25.00. But fear not, lovelies, this stuff does the trick on frizzies and flyaways like no one's bidness.
Pro: is awesome.
Con: proves I should not be allowed in salons alone, ever.
SOYJOY Nutrition Bars: Oh, soy product. You know I love thee. And you come in mango now? Never mind that you look like cardboard! Come to me. I must taste your fruits.

Uhh, yeah. These things are delicious. And expensive. And tiny. But so very good for you, surprisingly. I only wish mine came with Japanese writing on it because then I would've bought 20.

Diet Coke Plus: Just what it sounds like, duh. Diet Coke with vitamins and minerals! Which ones? No idea. Cool logo though, yes? Oh wait, here it is... B3... zinc... something else. Is B3 even a vitamin? Is that like a quarter of B12?

Why did I buy this? Let me spell it out for you, script-style. Scene: A CVS in a very sketchy neighborhood. Time: 11 p.m. Outside, three cop cars are parked in the lot, surveying the lay of the land. Chris and I exit, only to find ourselves trapped in rival gang fire. With a burst of super B3 energy, I grab Chris and throw him over my shoulder and leap the 100 yards to his car, thus ensuring our safety. The cops clap and whistle and I take a small bow, then hand them the Diet Coke Plus bottle cap. "Try it," I say earnestly, "there's just nothing like it!"

Shut up! That so could have happened. Regardless, I thought it tasted just like Diet Coke, Chris thought it tasted like Tab, we both enjoyed it and agreed to disagree.

Sony Clock Radio: Yeah, I had a perfectly functioning alarm clock already. So what? This one is green and orange! And plays different alarm melodies. And has a weekend mode. Actually, I do love the dual alarm function, it was a bit wearying when I had to reset the alarm every morning so that the Christopher could then hit snooze 90 gajillion times. And it was on sale at Target, the store where everything seems like I could possibly need it at some point.
And on that note, I will end this list of folly. I mean seriously: I don't need to divulge all my impetuous purchases to you. Yet.

*Please don't worry about me too much, all the people in my life are just fine. And that is as much as I'm willing to say for now.

Friday, May 04, 2007

Because I am Bored And I Am Lazy. And You Know This.

Time Started: 6:41 p.m.
Name: NPW
Gender: female

1.) When showering, do you start the water and then get in or get in and start the water?
If you got in and then started the water, you'd risk being frozen to death and then scalded. At least in my apartment, anyway.

2.) Do you read the labels on the shampoo bottle?
When I'm buying them. In the shower, I'm usually too sleepy.

3.) Do you moan in the shower like the people on the herbal essence commercial?
Absolutely not.

4.) Have you ever been forced to shower with one of your siblings?
As an adult? What kind of pervy questionnaire is this?

6.) Have you ever brushed your teeth in the shower?

7.) Have you ever dropped your soap on your foot?
Heck yes. It hurts like hell.

9.) How old do you look?
Old enough to be your mother! Wait, what?

10.) What's the last song you heard/sang?
One Two Three Four, Feist

11.) Have you recently become a member of anything?:
I don't think I understand this question. I just joined an Ultimate Frisbee league... does that count?

12.) What are your plans for the weekend?
Wine tasting, date night, family time.

13.) What is your mood at the moment?
A bit down.

14.) Have you ever ridden a mechanical bull?
No, but it's on my list of life-long goals. Tequila Rain, here I come! Maybe I can scratch off the wet t-shirt contest at the same time. (Ha!)

15) Do you ever intentionally vomit after eating?
No. Is this really the time or place to cop to bulimia, though?

16.) Who would win in a fight...a Tiger or a Lion?
Ummm. A lion? I like lions. They would definitely win.

17.) Have you ever called anyone a slut?
Not to their face.

18.) Has anyone ever called you a slut?
I wouldn't imagine so.

19). Have you ever smuggled something into America?
Yes. Shh.

20.) Does playing a guitar make someone more attractive?
Maybe? It depends on the person.

21.) Do you live in a city with a good sports team?

25.) Do you have more enemies or more friends?
I lost count at 111 to 115.

26.) Have you ever sent an anonymous letter?

27.) Can you fix your own car?
I can barely manage to put my own windshield wiper fluid in. Isn't that what Dads and boyfriends are for?

28.) Do you like staying up late?
Yes, although it's not very conducive to my work schedule.

29.) Are you smarter than your friends?
I wouldn't say so. I make them all take IQ tests before we can become friends so that I know they are smarter than me.

30.) Have you ever stolen anything from your friends?

31.) Have you ever been to jail?
No. I'm not cut out to do hard time.

33) Do you like the smell of beer?
The smell? Like stale beer in a bar? No.

34.) Have you ever died or killed someone in a dream?
Yes. It's very disconcerting.

35.) Have you ever given to charity?
Yes. I work in a school, you see.

36.) Would you kill a dog for $1000?
No! Sickos.

37.) Do you ever get depressed?

38.) Do you live with your parents?

39.) Do you have plans for your future?
I guess? I would think only the suicidal would have absolutely no plans for their future.

You are
[]short, 5'3" and under
[] 5'4"-5'5"
[] 5'6" - 5'7 ''
[x] 5'8" - 6'0"
[] tall 6'1 and up

[] blonde/dirty blonde
[] redhead
[x] brunette/light brown (tremendous too!)
[ ] black
[ ] dont know... dyed it to much

[] blue-eyed
[] brown-eyed
[] black-eyed
[] green-eyed
[] Hazel-eyed
[ ] gold/gray-eyed
[ ] silver/gray- eyed
[ ] blue/green-eyed
[ x] blue/gray-eyed
[ ] green/gray-eyed
[ ] they change colors
[ ] amber

[x] glasses--
[] neither

[] short hair
[x] medium hair
[] long hair
[] no hair

Your favorite color(s) are?
[] red
[] khaki
[] aqua
[x] pink
[] yellow
[x] black
[x] green
[] lime green
[x] blue
[] white
[] turquoise
[] silver
[] purple
[x] brown
[] orange
[] grey
[] fuscia
[] maroon
[] gold
[] teal
[] coral
[] clear
[] bronze
[x] i don't really care (you can say that again)
[] rainbow
[x] i basically like all colors

Your personality is sometimes...
[x] talkative
[x] shy
[x] funny
[x] serious
[x] laid back
[] strict
[] hyper
[x] sarcastic

The pets you have HAD?
[x] cat
[x] dog
[] rat
[] ferret
[x] bunny
[x] fish
[] horse
[] bird
[x] frog
[] hermit crab
[] turtle
[x] hamster
[] snake
[] gerbil
[] guinea pig
[] pig
[] chinchilla
[] tarantula
[] geese
[] baby chicks
[] baby ducklings
[] none
[] hedgehog
[] piranha
[] seagull
[] newt/ salamander
[] pigeon
[] lizard
[] I hate animals

Your confessions:
[] I hate silence
[x] I am really ticklish
[x] I'm afraid of the dark
[x] I've collected comic books
[x] I sometimes shut out others
[] I open up to others TOO easily
[x] I read the newspaper
[] I love Disney movies
[x]I am a sucker for gorgeous eyes
[x] I am a sucker for a gorgeous smile
[] I don't kill bugs
[] I have "x"s in my screen name
[x] I bake well
[x] I have worn pajamas to class
[x] I love Martha Stewart
[x] I am self-conscious
[x] I love to laugh
[] I can't swallow pills
[x] I bite my nails
[x] I play computer games when I'm REALLY bored (and also sometimes when I'm not)
[x] I have gotten lost in the city
[x] I have gone out in public in my pajamas
[x] I have made out in an elevator
[] I have been skydiving
[] I have been bungee jumping
[x] I have bitten someone
[ ]I have egged or rolled a house/car
[x] I have smashed into a car
[x]I have been skinny dipping

Have you ever...
[x] Seen a shooting star
[]Joke proposed to anyone
[]Gotten stitches
[x] Eaten Sushi
[x] Gotten the chicken pox
[x] Ridden in a taxi
[x] Been on a cruise ship
[x] Driven over 400 miles in one day
[x] Been on a plane without adults
[x] Had surgery
[] Seen a movie more than 3 times in the theater
[]Been on stage
[] Gotten a black eye
[x] Memorized all the dialogue in a movie
[x] Watched an entire baseball game

Do you like...
[x] Old movies
[] Musicals
[x] Blasting music in your car
[x] Foreign foods
[] Gameboy Pokemon
[] Christmas time
[x] Animals
[x] Coffee
[x] Tea
[x] Summer
[] Winter

Spell your name without vowels: nncyprlwnnb

What color(s) do you wear most often?

Last song heard on the radio?
Some Green Day song, unfortunately.

What's for dinner tonight?:
Turkey curry salad sandwich, roasted potatoes.

Are you happy with your life right now?:
Some parts of it. Mostly, yes.

Do you have:
- PSP?: nope
- PS2?: yes
- PS3?: nope
- XBOX?: nope
- XBOX 360?: want one!
-Wii? want one!
- Digital Camera?: yes
- game cube?: no
- Gameboy?: nope
- Nintendo DS?: yes

Do you shop at stores like Aeropostale and American Eagle?
Not often. I try to refrain from looking like my students. I feel that's a good rule of thumb.

How do you make money?
That's a bit personal, buster.

Last thing you bought?
Method Shaving Cream- I'm a sucker for cool packaging.

How's the weather?
Sunny and cool.

When do you start summer break?
Not soon enough.

Do you own big sunglasses?
Yep. Just call me NancyPearlLohan.

Do you find yourself attractive?
I'm not unattractive.

How many beds did you lay in yesterday?

What color shirt are you wearing:
Pink and black.

Name one thing that you do everyday?

How much cash do you have on you right now?
$21. That's pretty good for me.

What's your favorite sport?
To play? Tennis.

What did you have for dinner last night:
Pizza night!

Look to your left, what do you see?:
A pile of books. My camera. Day planner.

Do you have plants in your room?
Yep. I love me some green stuff.

Favorite Starbucks drink?
Hmm... iced Cafe Americano with a little bit of soy milk. Or the iced Tazo chai.

Recent time you were really upset?:
It seems to be happening with alarming frequency as the school year comes to a close.

End time?
Who cares?

Thursday, May 03, 2007

Thirteen Oddities

Thirteen Odd Things You May Not Know About NPW
(In playing along with Noelle's Ten Dirty Little Secrets)

1. My clothes closet is organized by color, then in long sleeve to short sleeve order (with 3/4 length sleeves somewhere in between). Then pants, skirts, dresses, in that order. Sometimes shirts with patterns throw me off so much I can't decide which color they belong with, so they are relegated to the back of the closet where I promptly forget that I own them. My shoes are another story; they have an entire room devoted to them. Well, shoes and Christmas decorations, and a clothes rack, and Chris's shoes, and a couple of tables. But mostly shoes.

2. I have a compulsive need for car's radio display to be dust-free. While the rest of my car looks like the city dump had an avalanche that spilled directly into my backseat, I am always careful to lovingly remove any speck of dust that might marr my view of the radio station.

3. My use of commas is excessive and sometimes egregious. I'm aware of this and I am constantly re-reading my writing to make sure it doesn't look ridiculous.

4. Ten years later, I remain absurdly proud of my perfect score on the SAT II Writing test. As you can clearly see, that perfect score brought me big things: a whopping teacher's salary and a half-assed blog.

5. I can feel a nervous tic coming on when kids use the three-hole punch in the library and drop the little punched out holes all over the orange carpeting. If I catch them, I make them pick up every single one. If I don't see the actual culprit, I've found myself on more than one occasion down on hands and knees picking them up. Time to invest in a dust buster, maybe?

6. I'm irrationally afraid of being murdered. Likely this is due to a combination of factors: too much Court TV, a fear of the dark, and a somewhat hysterical mother who insists on calling me daily with updates on local Boston crime.

7. I prefer good beer to good wine. Does that make me less girly? Maybe. I don't care. Nothing is better than a delicious beer and pizza combo.

8. Every morning when I wake up I have to do things in the exact same order: coffee, shower, dress, lunch, dry hair, pack up, goodbye to Chris, out the door. If I don't do it in this order every day, I inevitably forget something and I can't be held acccountable for going into school half-dressed with wet hair and no lunch.

9. I get an ominous feeling when I step on cracks in the sidewalk or spill salt. I scoff at superstition, but deep down I still get a panicky, anxious feeling.

10. I have very strange cuticles. They're kind of non-existent, except when I somehow manage to snag one on something and it rips to shreds and causes a bloody mess.

11. If I know I am having guests over to my apartment I will obsessively clean and tidy, even if that means shoving everything "extra" into Chris's office room. We might be messy, but at least we can manage to be privately messy.

12. Having my wisdom teeth out was the worst experience of my life. That might make me sound like a huge wuss, but if you've never experienced a dry socket and a sadistic oral surgeon shoving 12 yards of gauze into a hole drilled into your jaw then you have no right to judge me. Plus, I woke up from the surgery to find my father laughing at me and my clothes covered in blood from where they had to drill my teeth out of my bone. Traumatizing.

13. I eat my lunch at 10:30 every school day. That means on the weekends I am absolutely starving by noon- which ends up being breakfast. Then I skip lunch because otherwise it would ruin my 5 p.m. dinner time. It also means that when all you normal people are eating lunch, I am pretty much done with my work day. Yeah, schools.

Wednesday, May 02, 2007

The Miracle of Advertising

A few months back I discovered that the person I called my best friend in the whole world, the person I had been friends with for the majority of my lifetime, the person with whom I shared an honorary PhD in Dirty Dancingology, was insanely jealous of of my boyfriend. To the point where she decided she'd rather not be friends with me at all than live with the fact she'd have to share my time with someone else.

I suppose I should've seen it coming. Even though L and Chris got along really well, she was forever making comments about how much time I would spend with him, how it was insane to date someone who lived 6 hours away (at the time), and how our relationship could only end in heartbreak. Still, the fact that she and Chris were friends seemed very promising to me; she and my previous boyfriend had hated each other with the ferocity of a thousand suns. Seriously, if they spoke two words to each other in the course of an evening I considered it a huge success.

While Chris was still living in New York it was easier to ignore. She did inform me that she was put out when I chose to spend most of last summer in New York, but otherwise she seemed to be able to keep her jealousy in check. It wasn't until I told her that Chris would be moving out to Boston that everything broke down. "He's moving out here? So soon? Don't you think it's too soon? It's too soon! You're going to regret it. Wait, you're going to live with him? This is ridiculous." And so on, and so on. You get the point.

And while I understood her need to speak her mind (often, and to countless other people, even), it became a bit tiresome week after week. One night I was out with a mutual friend of ours and she happened to mention that L had been talking about me- had, in fact, been talking about me to everyone we knew. Maybe she was trying to garner support of her "Chris stays in NY" campaign, maybe she didn't think it would get back to me, maybe she just needed to vent. I didn't care. I was angry. Then our mutual friend also informed me that L had admitted to having a crush on one of our other friends- a girl- and it was then it dawned on me. L was so crazy jealous because she wanted to be with me.


I resisted that idea for a while, assuring myself that she would've said something before, that there was no way I wouldn't have noticed. I told myself that I couldn't know that was true. I ignored the fact that people had been teasing me for years that L had a crush on me. She wasn't gay! I would've known! She dates men! But in the end, I knew my hunch was right. It didn't surprise me or freak me out, nor would I have cared if she had said she was or was not gay. But she definitely didn't trust me as much as I thought she did, and that hurt.

To make a long story short, I never ended up confronting her, she freaked out when Chris moved here (for various reasons), Chris and I moved out, L decided to not ever speak to me again. End of story, right?

No. Me, being the sap that I am, decided it wasn't good enough to leave things at that. I thought, for once in my life I should just suck it up and be the bigger person. Pride and holding grudges have always been my weakness and I knew that I could play this not speaking to each other game until the end of days. But it just didn't feel right, to end a 10 year friendship with an email confrontation. So I wrote her back and told her all the things I had been thinking for months and months. I spent time pondering how I wanted to word things. I worked at it. I told her if she ever wanted to talk, like really talk, I would make time.

The response:
"I think of you in a far off city or a boat or something without phones or email access."

Wha huh? I live approximately .5 miles from you. Apparently my grand gesture, my Buddhist philosophy of being the "bigger person", did not play out exactly as I had thought it would. Oh well. C'est la vie.

And the reason I decided to finally write this all out? No, it wasn't some overwhelming desire to tell the world about a failed friendship. It was this ad on a website that suddenly reminded me of her:

Props to Google for its simplicity. And who knows? Maybe if L had seen this ad a year ago things would have turned out a bit differently.

Tuesday, May 01, 2007

Playing Catch Up

Right. First off, I have to give myself props for being a domestic goddess. I mean, I'm aware that I'm a pretty good cook (you would be, too, if you grew up with my mother), but last night I kind of blew myself away. Oh yeah, and Chris was pretty impressed too.

I had actually stayed home from work yesterday- a combination of allergies and sore throat and swollen glands and eyes convinced me I'd best not enter the den of mold I call my office. But by noon I was feeling fine, flying high on a cocktail of coffee and benadryl, and decided to put my newfound energy to good use and catch up on things I never find time to do. I power cleaned, cleared out all my old summer clothes to make room for new ones, did loads and loads of laundry, paid a bunch of bills, rearranged my Netflix queue, emailed a bunch of people I never get to talk to, scrubbed out the tub, and even found time to watch The Last King of Scotland. Which, by the way, was amazing.

And then I started to put together dinner. We bought two tilapia filets at Whole Foods the other day and marinated them in coconut milk. I dredged them in flour and black pepper, coated them with more coconut milk, and dragged them through panko and coconut flakes, and threw them in a super hot wok with olive oil.

Then I cut up red potatoes and mango chunks with allspice, sea salt, black pepper, fresh parsley, and a touch of cayenne and baked them in the oven for 45 minutes until they were all crisped up.

I mixed the last of the coconut milk, some orange juice, brown sugar, and kosher salt and simmered it to a reduction glaze for the finished fish.

Seriously, who wouldn't want me as their personal chef? And don't say people that don't like fish. My skillz range to all manner of consumable goods, not just the oceanic variety. Anyway, that delicious meal convinced me that I must join Boston Organics, at least for the summer. I love fresh food. It also made me realize I absolutely need a grill. Because fish on the grill in the summertime? Love.

Moving on from my crazy cooking, there have been things in the works here in Beantown. I signed up for an actual Ultimate Frisbee league for the spring. This means two things: one, they will probably keep an actual score and there will probably be an actual winner (as opposed to the pick up league I played with last year, where the girls mostly skipped down the field singing show tunes while the dudes tackled each other to the ground for the frisbee). Two, although they are likely going to be more competitive, I have the feeling that they will also be better, more experienced players, which means I hopefully will not incur quite so many injuries as last year.

Another sign that it's spring, the Christopher got invited to the Red Sox game at Fenway this evening. I am insanely jealous, but happy he gets to go. While he's down there, I am going to meet a friend at the newly opened Wagamama's in Faneuil Hall. Hooray!

I'll leave you with a quick recap of last weekend:
  • Went to a charity BBQ. Did not win the raffle for the ipod video.
  • Proceeded to the liquor store to buy cachacas- a Brazilian rum-type liquor made from distilled sugar cane. Hung out with some other friends drinking caipirinhas for the remainder of the night.
  • Saw Hot Fuzz. Was hilarious. I liked it as much as Shaun of the Dead, and that's saying a lot. And speaking of Shaun of the Dead, who's up for zombies next weekend?
Hope you all had a pleasant start to your week. Only four days left till Friday: we can do this.

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