Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Blue Christmas

When your best gay friend is in town, and Starbucks busts out the peppermint concoctions in a big way, it's time for one very important thing:  Christmas tree.

 

How does a glamorous New Yorker pick out a Christmas tree?
Why, they walk through the sketchy part of town to the Duane Reade, pick up some cheap-o decorations, and go to TOWN, you guys!



 And since I was wearing a blue velvet blazer, I decided that the theme of my Christmas should match my outfit.  Of course.

Ladies and Gentlemen:

My Blue Christmas!


Granted, the blue plastic garland got way too hot and had to be taken down, but it is still cute!
Our little 4-foot, pre-lit tree is the perfect New York Christmas Tree!

Anyone else put up their Christmas trees yet, or am I the only one???

Meg Sauce

It has been my dream for the last 15 hours to create an amazing new sauce. Do what HP sauce did for Britain, Frite Sauce for Belgium, and ketchup for the good ol' US of A. They will name it after me, and at first, it will be a staple of my household. I'll whip up home-made batches and serve it to houseguests, and pour it into jars to take home with them. Soon, it will be a family legend: Meg Sauce will be required at all holidays and gatherings! Maybe one day, a plucky local restaurant will run out of sauce, and I'll take to the kitchen with my secret ingredient, and soon it will take Manhattan by storm and the rest, they say, will be history. My birthday will be a national holiday. But eventually, it will be moved to the last Saturday in July.

Here are my requirements: it must be delicious on french fries and burgers. Maybe even sandwiches and in potato salad! Eccentric folks will put it in hot dogs and maybe even dip onion rings in it!

I'm thinking something with brown mustard? Maybe European mayonnaise...details to come!

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Walking in a Winter Wonderland...68 degrees and counting!

Lights are starting to go up all over the city, and it puts me in such a festive mood!  It may be muggy and rainy outside, but inside I am determined to have holly jolly snow inside!  Here's my take, inspired by something I saw online but can't for the life of me remember where.  Guess what it is?  Cotton balls and dental floss!  Mint dental floss, for that wintery aura.

Now it looks like a blizzard in my doorway!  Now all I have to figure out is where to fit a Christmas tree in my tiny little apartment...!!!

Monday, November 28, 2011

Be It Ever So Humble...

I am very thankful I was welcomed into a warm, awesome home for Thanksgiving.


I had many adventures and saw many new sights and met some new friends.


But I have to admit, sometimes there's nothing better than your old couch, some quiet time for thinking, putting on a facial mask and taking up the guitar after 5 years.


I still remember 3/4ths of the intro to "Here Comes The Sun."




Friday, November 25, 2011

Late Night Thoughts on Life

Listen, kids.

Life is short.

If I were you, I would spend as much time as possible...

kissing
dancing
laughing
eating
shouting
hugging
clapping
listening
sharing
giving
travelling
singing
and taking pictures

And as little time as possible making other people's lives miserable.

That's it.

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Coffee and Cheetos

While I'm away enjoying a vegetarian Thanksgiving, I thought I'd share with you what a vegetarian eats.  Many people show lofty photos of what they eat during the day as vegetarians: quinoa and seitan and other things that Mozilla Firefox automatic spell check does not recognize as words.

So here's what I, as an average vegetarian, eat during the day:

 Lots of coffee...so sue me.

 Multigrain bread with hummus.  The laziest breakfast humanly possible.

 Pumpkin Black Bean Soup - recipe from Food Network

 And Cheetos.  Always "crunchy," never puffed.  Ew, puffed!




Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Movie Review -- Edie & Thea: A Very Long Engagement

It's hard for me to convey how touching this film is, and not spoil any important surprises, so suffice to say, just watch it.  If you're thinking about watching the documentary Tying the Knot, I would watch this one instead.  This one is very positive, hardly political, deeply personal and beautiful.

Sometimes, it's easy to get caught up in the trappings of marriage: the dresses, the flowers, the registry, the honeymoon.  This documentary defines what marriage means to me:  a union of people so in love that nothing can separate them.  It melts my heart.  This is love.




Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Packed


I don't travel well.  I never have.  I always worry that I'm leaving something irreplaceable behind, or missing something crucial that I will need.  The reality, which I always seem to forget, is that no matter where you are, you can always run out and buy that toothbrush or shampoo or extra pair of socks that you need, and it's inconsequential when compared to the memories you should be making so don't obsess about it!

Yet every time I am forced to pack for a journey, whether it's a weekend at my parents' house or 3 weeks in Europe, I always worry about bringing enough outfit options, makeup choices, and activities to occupy my time.  Eels is the direct opposite of this.  Take the European vacation, for instance.  He had an iPod, two T-shirts, a sweater, and a pair of pants.  For THREE WEEKS IN EUROPE.  I am not even going to embarrass him by telling you how many underthings he had, but suffice to say, he did not run to WAL*MART in a panic and buy 3 multi-packs of new underwear to supplement his existing collection to ensure a surplus in case of international crisis.  Yes, I buy cheap underwear.  Judge away.  I am disgusting.

And when we arrived at the hostel in Amsterdam and learned that toiletries were NOT provided, as expected, what did we do?  We wandered around the city, taking in the local sights, as well as a drug store for shampoo and conditioner and a home-goods store for a towel (have you ever tried using a t-shirt as a towel?  Not very absorbent. Just a tip) which I still use and love and treasure and refer to affectionately as the "Amster-towel".  I think it was my only souvenir from that whole trip.

My point is, I always turn packing for a trip into a much bigger ordeal than it ever needs to be.  As much as I try to relax and just throw some clothes into a suitcase, somehow I invariably end up trying on nearly all the clothes in my closet, and packing enough options for survival should we suddenly find ourselves caught in the movie The Day After Tomorrow.  Am I alone here?


Monday, November 21, 2011

Making Friends

The day after my sixth birthday, I moved to an entirely new state.  I had left behind my friends, my school, and everything I had known up to that point.  I was livid.

To cheer me up, my mother suggested that we take a walk up and down the street to check the nearby houses for swingsets in the backyard.  This would mean that kids lived in that house.  The first house we passed with a swingset also happened to have a girl living there, my age, going into the first grade that fall, like me.  That is the story of how I made my first, official, friend.

It keeps going like that all through grade school - just befriend the people around you.  The people who sit near you in homeroom.  The other girls in your gym class.  For survival, you find people you can tolerate in each class.

Things are even easier in college:  the powers that be assign you another human being to live with for months at a time, and if you're lucky, you can get along, and you have a built-in friend!

Two months after my 24th birthday, I moved to The Big Apple.  I left behind all I had known since I was six, and a rich plethora of friends I had collected over the years in between.

Since then, making new friends has been nearly impossible.  Not to bash on my great city, but when the prevailing culture makes human interaction taboo, it's easier said than done to strike up a conversation on the subway with a girl who happens to be reading your favourite book, or blasting a great song on her earphones, or knitting a very ambitious sock.  And even if you can work up the courage to exchange a few compliments, how do you dare to ask for a name, an email, a phone number?  Can you just point-blank ask someone:

will you be my friend?






Sunday, November 20, 2011

Kids

Eels and I often have a debate about who should be allowed to have children.  We see so many bad parents in a day:  overindulgent parents with bratty kids, impatient parents with unruly kids, brilliant kids with self-absorbed parents and obnoxious kids with inattentive parents.  We have thought of every solution to this bad parenting epidemic, from banning people from procreating altogether to the more creative solution, administering a test.  Which is a good idea, but how do you test who would be a good parent?  This morning, I finally realized what the test would look like:

  1. Will you love your child(ren) even if they are not your preferred gender?
  2. Will you love your child(ren) even if they are unattractive?
  3. Will you love your child(ren) even if they are not as smart as you are?
  4. Will you love your child(ren) even if they are not as energetic as you would have wanted?
  5. Will you love your child(ren) even if they are misbehaving?
  6. Will you love your child(ren) even if they are shallow?
  7. Will you love your child(ren) even if they do not succeed?
  8. Will you love your child(ren) even if they are embarrassing?
  9. Will you love your child(ren) even if they are sick?
  10. Will you love your child(ren) even if they do not love you back?
If you can agree to all, and I do mean ALL, of the above statements, then I believe you should be allowed to have kids.  Again, I don't have kids, but better not to than to have them and mess it up, amirite?

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Thanksgiving through the years...

Many bloggers are writing about their Thanksgiving traditions and it got me thinking about my own, or rather, my lack of tradition. This year will be my second Thanksgiving with my sin-laws*, and I'm once again paralyzed with fear that they won't like me, trying on all my clothes to figure out what to pack, and asking needling questions of Eels like "Should I bring fleece pajamas, or is that too presumptuous?". But it wasn't always this way! Here's a look back at the Thanksgivings we have spent "together"...

Thanksgiving 2007
Eels and I
had just met that August, and were talking regularly on the phone and sending frequent emails, but we were both still in denial that we were in an actual relationship. I spent this Thanksgiving as I usually did after becoming a vegetarian: at home in upstate New York with my dad and the dogs. I watched the Thanksgiving Day parade, got choked up at the images of New York City on the TV, and then went to Black Friday sales at some ungodly hour of the morning with my best friends from town.

Thanksgiving 2008 By this time it was recognized that we were in love, and I moved to New York City to be with Eels, worked a full-time job while he went to school, and expected to attend his family Thanksgiving, but a family tragedy determined that it was too soon for me to be foisted upon the group. Instead, I drove all night (literally, we left at 2am and arrived in Binghamton at 7am) to get Eli home to meet his parents to drive to Cleveland, and I went wedding dress shopping with one of my friends from the previous year. I put down the deposit on her dream gown as an early birthday present. I ate cheesecake with my dad and watched the parade.

Thanksgiving 2009
Finally, I was ready
to meet Eels's family. Nervous as all hell, I made the 9-hour drive with them to Cleveland and found his family very charming. We went to lots of museums (like the science museum, pictured left), played games, I learned to polka, and we had a fully vegetarian Thanksgiving dinner. It was basically like a dream! I really enjoyed meeting his family, and they were very welcoming to me.

Thanksgiving 2010
After much hand-wringing
and nervous back-and-forth, I decided not to spend the holiday with Eels and his family. My grandmother's health was very poorly, and I decided that I couldn't risk not spending the holiday with her so, for the first time in almost a decade, I shuffled off to Buffalo with my mother. I missed Eels something fierce, and we texted back and forth almost the whole time. My cousins and I played Just Dance on their Wii, we made cotton candy, my aunt made me a tofurkey, and I was more relaxed than I had been in a long time because I had just been cast in a dream role of a lifetime AND summoned the courage to quit my first job in the city, working for a tyrannical bastard who was slowly killing me.

Thanksgiving 2011 We've been looking forward to this for some time! Eels's cousin just had a baby (over the summer) and we can't wait to meet her.

*sin-laws: according to UrbanDictionary.com, "sin-laws" are what you call the family of your significant other to whom you are not married. If you are "living in sin" with a person, their family are your sin-laws.

Not Even In My Dreams...

Last night, I dreamed that a man who was basically an amalgamation of a few male directors I'd worked with in the past asked me out on a date. I presumed it to be a professional date, as Mr. Director was talking me through my resume and lauding me with compliments, but there were subtle hints dropped leading me to question whether or not this was a personal date.

He complimented me on my last great role (which was about a year ago this week) and asked me what great things I'd done since then, and I confessed that my blank resume was the truth. He told me I was a great actress, but I could tell this was a shallow compliment as he had no intention of getting me a job.

Once it was clear that I was getting nowhere with this guy, a fellow actor/director friend of mine told me he was staging a re-enactment and needed someone to fill a role - desperate to prove my worth to Mr. Director, I accepted. I was to ride a red plastic Big Wheel through a twisty, turny ancient temple in a race against two motorcycles and a 4-Wheeler (note: I have never seen a 4-Wheeler, but I assume they exist for the purposes of this dream). I did, and not even taking the race seriously, I won! Later it would come to light that this was a great achievement, and people were taking pictures with me and admiring the grass stains on my knees where I fell and then persevered to win against the odds.

Smugly, I returned to Mr. Director, who was beaming back at me.

"So," I strode up to him, full of hubris, "can I have the job?"

"You're an amazing actress," he pumped my ego, "But no."

Friday, November 18, 2011

What the What?

I don't have "real" TV, so I don't get to watch a lot of commercials. Which is sad! Commercials are magical. They introduce us to trendy new songs, let us know when to start our holiday shopping, and remind us that no matter how medically "underweight" we are, we are fat and therefore disgusting (Thanks, Truvia!).

And then I saw this Cottonelle commercial about toilet roll covers, and I. Was. Flummoxed.

And a little bit terrified! Is this now a thing? Does uncovered toilet paper lead to cancer? I Linkwouldn't know! Without fear-inducing commercials to make me aware of all the dangers of, say, actual sugar (Truvia!) and uncovered toilet paper?

In case you, too, are panicked, go to Cottonelle's website to read more and purchase a toilet paper cover. It could save your life!

And then, watch this skit from That Mitchell and Webb Look, and tell me it isn't bang on.

Ode to My Shoes

Dear Aubergine Converse:

Thank you for carrying me all over town in comfort and style.

I never thought shoes could be both comfortable and cute, both trendy and personal, until I began wearing you all over the place.

When I lace you up to take on the world, I feel fully together, fully dressed, fully me.

When I cheat on you with other shoes, I feel naked, under-dressed, and pathetic.

Love you forever,

My Stinky Feet.

You Are Not Currently Smarter. Sorry.

Words That People Use That They Think Makes Them Sound Smarter
That They Don't Understand The Meaning Of
But They Inexplicably Use Anyway:

Currently

Facility

Respect

Literally

Princess

Recently

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Movie Review -- Take Me Home Tonight (2011)

My reaction to this movie, in brief: "DON'T take me home tonight!"

But honestly, this movie was probably the most upsetting and painful to watch film I've ever seen in the history of my life. So many characters that we care about make so many bad choices and suffer undue consequences. Oh, lord. Spoilers ahead.

Likeable goofball Dan Fogler plays "Barry," a pompous grunt who works as a car salesman and gets the axe for...doing his job? It's not really clear. We basically know two things about Barry throughout the course of this movie: 1) he uses too much mousse, and 2) he can't catch a break. After losing his job, he steals the most expensive car from the lot, inhales copious amounts of cocaine, and attempts to seduce numerous women to varying degrees of success, until eventually he gets raped in a bathroom? It's painful and very confusing.

Comedy perennial favourite Anna Faris plays...um...they don't really give her character a name, actually. She's basically one female character who is all the female characters in this movie rolled into a single role so they didn't have to cast too many chicks in this film. Confusing! So she's the lead character's twin sister AND the preppy jerk's girlfriend, both at the same time, apparently. But she wants to go to grad school in England and be a writer! So she's torn between moving into a condo with and marrying this jackass Kyle Masterson (what a name! ugh), and following her dreams. Guess what?!? She gets rejected from grad school. WAH! But then she summons the courage to dump the jerk. Yay? Except it turns out he's not really that big of a jerk...and she really broke his heart...so...she's the asshole, maybe? Wait...does she even have a NAME?

But but but! The lead character, Matt Franklin, is played by Topher Grace! Topher Grace, you guys! Starring in a 20th Century period piece comedy! This will be soooo great you guys! Except...his character faces the millennial problem of "I have a great college education but I work in a mall" (which has now become the problem of "I have a great college education but I can't even get a job in a mall because of the terrible economy") and he is in love with some girl Tori from school. He meets her. Lines get crossed. They sleep together and IMMEDIATELY she goes insane. INSANE! And breaks his heart, which leads him to attempt suicide to get her attention back.

Long story short: this is a high-school drama, billed as a coming-of-age comedy, with a confused soundtrack and some glaring continuity issues. This movie does to the 80's what Adventureland did to the 70's: it reminds us to be grateful for the shitty time period we currently live in.

Things I Love Thursday

Slatkin & Co. Fresh Balsam Candle
smells like the trees we used to buy from the farm up the hill from my parents' house
only without the spider nests, thank you very much.

Palmer's Cocoa Butter Formula lotion
relieves the beginnings of dry winter skin
and it makes me smell like chocolate!

Vintage Law & Order

Cynthia Nixon from 1990.
Need I say more?

The Queens Center Mall
takes me back to the old days
while still enjoying the good new days!

The Colossus of New York
by Colson Whitehead

a must-read for lovers of The Big Apple...
...or haters.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Modern Times

When your computer is sick, it can feel like your whole world is ending. It's easy, then, as you watch all your photos and letters and tax documents slip away forever - to forget that some people really do watch their entire lives end in floods, hurricanes, tornadoes, and earthquakes. But no! Our digital drama really is the end of the world.

Suddenly it doesn't matter that we are safe, well-fed, healthy and loved. All the things we accumulated virtually, virtually disappear, and we realize what it all was in the first place: ephemera. It can all be replaced. It can all be restored. It can be lived without.

But it's hard to put things into perspective when you can't live your life without gadgets. Then you log onto your boyfriend's sturdy but hideous iMac, rant about the sorry state of your life, sit back, and think how lucky you are that it was all just nothingness in the first place.

Monday, November 14, 2011

Catching Stairs

Since becoming a lady, it has become apparent to me that stairs were made for the enhancement of bosoms. Don't believe me? Just think about it for a minute.

Who among us ladies has not noticed the pleasant, happy bouncing effect achieved by clomping down a set of stairs? It immediately lifts the mood! One quick jaunt down the staircase can turn any dull, sad mammaries into the perky, Pamela-Anderson-slow-running-on-the-beach bosoms!

Why, even the word "stare" comes from the word "stairs!" True story: back during the days of corsetry, men would climb the stairs to the level above the ladies for the sole purpose of looking down at the cleavage below them without being caught obviously feasting upon the visual image. It became a practice commonly know as "ascending of stairs for viewing of bosoms below," but precocious youths shortened the phrase to "stairing at bosoms," which, in time, was shortened still further, to simply, "staring at boobs." Unfortunately, it was about this time that the rigid practices of deception became lax, and men were frequently caught in the act, which gave rise to the more popular phrase, "Quit staring at my boobs!" which has now become the vernacular.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Past, Present, Future

Sometimes I feel like my self is fragmented into a million different people: each time I am reflected in someone else's eyes, I become a new person. Zillions of me exist in the past, then there's who I am right now, and who I may yet be. It's exhausting, to be so many different people, constantly changing, evolving and devolving, over and over every day.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

How To Spot A Subway Crazy

1. They reference religion.

"It's in the Bible! Read the Bible!"

2. They're misogynist.

"Women! Women who worship at the altar of Mary Kay!"

3. They make really obvious statements that sound absolutely bizarre coming from them.

"Sooner or later you're going to realize that 1 and 1 makes 2, not 11! Think about it!"

If you spot a subway nutter, like I did on the train today, NEVER MAKE EYE CONTACT OH FOR THE LOVE OF GOD DON'T MAKE EYE CONTACT!

Cleanliness Is Next To...

It is a tradition in my family that, whenever one is expecting guests in the form of relatives, one must clean LIKE CRAZY. I remember, growing up, that days before family members would arrive at my childhood home for a visit, panic would ensue and all rooms, surfaces, rugs, and cupboards would be purged and cleaned as if for inspection. Perhaps there was a secret inspection! As a child, I vowed never to allow myself and my own home to be subject to such scrutiny. What could it possibly matter, I reasoned, if my house is clean when my mother visits?

Now I am older and wiser, and my mother is coming to see my FIRST EVER APARTMENT THAT I LIVE IN WITHOUT ROOMMATES for the FIRST TIME EVER and I have spent so much time cleaning that my hands now have a permanent film of Comet on them. Ew! Of course, I now know that the reason behind all the frantic cleaning is to give the rest of the family the illusion that you are mature, together, neat, and responsible.

My apartment may be nearly spotless now (thank you, 4 rooms!), but my facade of maturity may all come crashing down, should my mother open my fridge:

This is not the fridge of a mature, together, neat, responsible adult.

Seen above: takeout leftovers, 4 types of cookies, and a dozen cheese sticks. Uh oh...

Girls Just Want To Have Fun, Too!

Yesterday I saw A Very Harold & Kumar Christmas in 3D, which was every bit as good as the title is long. But it bothered me that there were so few women in the cast, and the ones that were in the cast were, well...(spoilers ahead!)

Well, one lady (the one who came off the best in the film, from a feminist standpoint) was lured into Neil Patrick Harris's dressing room and fought off his attempted sexual assault. But in the context of the movie, she was being portrayed as a "buzzkill" and the audience was supposed to root against her. Then, there was the underage girl who attempted to lure a man into taking her virginity, and when he refused and she was caught in the act attempting to rape another guy, she accused HIM of trying to attack HER - which is so obviously this "evil seductress" trope and they try to send the message that 1. women are asking for it and 2. trying to discredit women who cry "rape." Also, she was obviously very young, so they were totally sexualizing a like, 12-14-year-old girl, which was just uncomfortable to watch, and nobody ever mentioned how weird it was that all these guys were totally trying to have sex with a minor. Again, she's a bad, bad woman getting men into trouble and ruining their fun.

Harold & Kumar originally started with two college kids, getting high and looking for fun. The actors have all aged and grown up, and that was a huge part of this movie. Harold is married and trying to have a family, and as such, he has to give up smoking weed because apparently it can inhibit your fertility (DISCLAIMER: No it does not). Kumar's girlfriend turns up pregnant, yells at him for getting high all the time, and tell him to take responsibility. Apparently, guys can still be fun and party into their late 20's and 30's, but women become baby-hungry succubi and cease to be any fun at all? In the end of the movie, both women turn up pregnant, and their days of fun are presumably over, but Harold and Kumar share a blunt on Harold's front porch as the credits roll. Men can party and have fun despite the shrill nagging harpies in their life! But what of the ladies? I don't know, I guess they become incubators and spend their days arranging throw pillows. Can you imagine if the roles were reversed? A young woman, or a young mother, out partying and having wacky adventures? Not in Hollywood!

Why can't there be more roles for women like Harold and Kumar? Is it that the public doesn't want to see women being outrageous? Or are there just no women out there in real life who enjoy being irresponsible? Then...what am I doing here???

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Is This Fall?

November 9th, 2011
63 degrees & sunny

The view from my front door.
Stone walls.
George Washington Bridge.
Autumn Leaves & New Jersey Palisades

Hello, awkward long hair!
Check out that finger bling!
We need some sunglasses up in here!

Can't Sleep

I don't profess to be an expert at many things, but one thing I've never had trouble with - until lately, it seems - is sleeping.

My sleep story begins at the age of 7, when I was diagnosed with Attention Deficit Disorder. As unlikely as it may seem, the medication for ADD is stimulants. Many years of trying to find the right balance of stimulants to keep me focused in class resulted in accidental overdoses, and a childhood of frustrating insomnia. I think not being able to sleep is the worst when you're a just a kid, because you don't know how to handle it on your own, and moreover, you're really not allowed to: you can't read until you fall asleep because "The lights are out, it's bedtime." You can't listen to relaxing music because "You'll wake the whole house!" You can't slip down to the kitchen and ask for some warmed milk because "Quit stalling and go to bed! You have to wake up for school in a few hours!" and thus the cycle of being tired at school and awake all night would result in more stimulants, less sleep, more frustration.

Once a normal dosage was finally reached, I only reported trouble sleeping on Christmas Eve (ugh so cliche I know) or in strange places. But soon enough I became an expert at falling asleep. I could do it in the plastic chairs at the movies, on a friend's floor, even bent over a Greyhound bus armrest with my head dangling upside-down into the aisle! It takes a whole lot more than gravity to keep ME awake, you see.

But lately I've had trouble falling asleep. Trouble waking up and not being able to return to sleep. What can I do? Why is this happening? How can I reclaim my title of "Sleep Champ"???

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Hypocrites!!!

Why is it that people LOOOVE Christmas music in December...

Feel warmly towards it again in July/August...

And the loathe it in November???

WHAAAAT?

Will Work For Food

At the end of today's work day, an adorable young girl approached my stand. I drew pictures for her, she laughed at my jokes, and at the end of my demonstration, before she left, her dad prodded her:

"Give her what you wanted to give her!"

She held a small object in her hand, and I opened my hand like a table to receive it, even though this sort of thing has never happened before. She placed a small orange M&M into my palm, and I could barely contain myself.

"I've never gotten a tip before! I'm going to save it for later so I don't spoil my dinner!"

I slipped it into my pocket and kept it. I'm not sure if I should actually eat it because

A) It was so adorable and I kind of want to keep it forever, and

B) I have no idea where it came from originally.

But you know those commercials where the people are totally psyched to get paid in stupid gum? I always thought they were so moronic until tonight. After tonight, I think it might actually be cool to work for sticky M&Ms that come from the pockets of little girls with missing-tooth smiles.

Monday, November 7, 2011

The Adventures of Herman, the Misanthropic Hermit Crab!

Meet Herman -

He's a hermit crab who has been prodded, pushed and honked at one time too many.

Now, he's not taking it anymore!

See Herman in all his fantastic adventures, including Herman the Misanthropic Hermit Crab and the Mystery of the Urine-Soaked Public Toilet Seat,
Herman the Misanthropic Hermit Crab Wants You To Know That Honking Doesn't In Fact Make Your Car Move Faster,
and the classic,
Herman the Misanthropic Hermit Crab Gets Fired From Starbucks for Throwing a Latte in a Customer's Face Following a Libertarian Debate.


Coming to bookstores soon.

Unless we decide that you people don't deserve to read our books.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Hands On

~what my hands are making lately~

~what my hands are wearing lately~

Looks Like Autumn, Smells Like Winter

Today really is the most beautiful day. At only 44 degrees, I'm a little overdressed in jeans, T-shirt, and hoodie (it's laundry day, as I explained to my neighbor when he caught me walking home bare-faced with my greasy hair in a "I've given up" ponytail. He understood). The air is warm, no hint of a breeze except maybe a soft, cool one by the water, but it has that crisp bite that suggests winter isn't too far off.

The trees have all turned golden brown, and some over across the river in the Palisades are showing yellows and reds. I just hope they all hang on long enough to show my mother when she comes to visit next weekend!

Sunday mornings up in Fort Washington are kind of magical. It feels like a secret only a few elite know about, to really enjoy. At 10am there was just me, some early brunchgoers, and dog walkers on my laundry run. The laundromat was packed full of dignified-looking older citizens. Sunday must be when all the cool people do their laundry! Later in the day, children will be walking to the park, and yuppies will stop in the sidewalk to chat over the Starbucks latte of the season (speaking of which, have you even tried Gingerbread Latte yet? I think it might be my fave!).

Daylight Savings time meant that the sun was up when I first woke up at 7:14am. Getting ready for work in the dark is now a thing of the past! Of course, it will get dark much earlier in the afternoon, but I haven't come home in daylight since June, so it won't make a difference much.

Seasons are changing.

Friday, November 4, 2011

We Could Be Heroes

Something that's been nagging at me for a very long time...

I have a tendency (and maybe you do, too) to idol-worship people. Yeah, I know. I'll take a person, anyone - a celebrity or a stranger from blogland - and turn them into a lifestyle guru. And then I'll try to model myself after them.

Before you think I'm weird, or creepy, consider this: have you never seen a celebrity look happy in a magazine, or look cute on TV and thought to yourself: "She looks so happy. She has it all together. I wish I was that happy and certain...so I'm going to copy her hairstyle!!!"

Or maybe you read someone's blog on the internet, and see pictures of her home, her children, her perfect wardrobe and think: "She has everything figured out. She gets it all done and still has time to decorate the house. She's so relaxed and introspective and I'm going to buy a jacket just like hers!!!"

Maybe you don't do this. Maybe your sense of self is so strong and cemented that you aren't piqued with interest at the mention of subjects like "How to Get Fall's Trendiest Looks!" Maybe you have heroes too, but you keep them in display cases on a shelf and look at them occasionally when you pass through your living room, but you don't try to capture their glow or their whimsy in your own life. Maybe I AM a crazy stalker. But if you do look around you at the cool kids and subtly try to copy their moves, let me put this to you.

Who are the cool kids copying?

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Just A Boring Day

Today I:
finally found the dandruff shampoo I've been looking all over town for
ran out of dish soap just after the water was turned back on
bought a single stamp from the "scary" bodega
made Black Bean Pumpkin soup
finished knitting one more square
watched a million episodes of Say Yes to the Dress

Adjective Discourse.

Confession: I am kind of a snob. I judge people based on how many adjectives they use in everyday conversation. Basically, I have identified the three worst offenders of this adjective crime:

"Crazy" People
These folks are basically walking mushrooms, as far as vocabulary is concerned. They are able to communicate in a few grunts and barks, but when it comes to expressing anything beyond "Me want food," the only adjective they can think to use is "Crazy": "Your mom has cancer? That's crazy!" "Free concert tickets? That's crazy!" "She was so hot it was, like, crazy!" "My car is going crazy, it won't work!" There is virtually no spice to this conversation, it's all context. Chances are, they also depend on using over 1,000 different inflections of the word "dude" because they can't formulate a sentence.

"Stupid/Crazy/Awesome" People
Most of the people you will encounter in life are "Stupid/Crazy/Awesome" people. They have only three adjectives which they use on a rotating basis. Anything good is "Awesome:" "Leftover pizza for breakfast? Awesome!" Anything bad is "Stupid" (or "Gay," but they may grow out of this by the time they reach 20). "My stupid roommate ate my leftover pizza!" And anything that causes conflicting or confused emotion is "Crazy". Just slightly more sentient than plain old "crazy" people, they are capable of having opinions and labeling them in very black-and-white terms.

"Interesting" People
Terrible offenders! In a desperate attempt to project intelligence, they use the adjective "interesting" all the time to avoid engaging in deeper conversation while remaining aloof. These people are a poisonous mix of pretentious and vapid.

Please don't judge me for judging you.
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