31 July 2006

Credit Scores and Sephora Gift Cards

After a finance charge fiasco this month, followed by an irritating phone call to Chase I found out that there are so many things that can affect your credit score by going to this webpage:
http://www.privacyrights.org/fs/fs6c-CreditScores.htm

The problem being, first and foremost, that I had to go to this website, because she didn't answer my questions, just tried to tell me to sign up for a plan that would send my score with each monthly statement. I mean, all I asked the woman on the other end of the line was what this might do to my credit score, and could I get a copy of my credit report? It turns out, requesting a copy of your score can lower it! ???!

I spent all morning trying to cancel my payment protector plan (they conned me into using them for four more months since I get to use the service free because of my recent move, but I'm cancelling as soon as this particular statement is paid off), and then I had to contest the finance charge. Chase-lady told me I could avoid "problems like this in the future" if I signed up for all sorts of things I was not interested in. I was severely offended by the way she said problems, but like a lot of things in my life these days I might have been projecting. That didn't stop me from being rude (granted, this was after 12 minutes of not being rude, which were what led to my having to be rude) when I forcibly hung up on her, basically telling her, "look lady, I'm not interested okay? Thank you for your time. Goodbye" *click*

The money-related phone call debacle of '06 ended on a very positive note, though.

I called Sephora to report my stolen gift card. The one that was in my wallet when I lost it so many months ago? Well, the card hasn't been used, which is both a relief and a bummer since it means my wallet may have been tossed in the garbage or something. Anyway, using the partial number off of an old reciept from New York (dated 25 February 2005! HA! Pay dirt! I knew being an excessive packrat would benefit me one day!), they cancelled the old card and issued me a new one with a little bit more money!

I love Sephora.

You Teach By Example

All of our windows are open these days, allowing for a cool breeze to waft through the apartment, along with various unseemly noises, apparently.

This morning, one of the landlady's adult grandchildren was visiting (the landlady is 96). The woman had brought her child to say hello to great-grandma, and grandma had given the child some money.

The mother kept telling her child to "say thank you," which is commendable. You should teach your children to say "thank you." The lesson went horribly astray when mom started teaching the child to be a screaming harpie bitch. In increasingly more annoyed tones, she was telling the child to "Say thank you. Stand up and say thank you. I'll wait. Say thank you. Stand up and say thank you. Say thank you, or [grandma] isn't going to like you. Say thank you. STAND UP AND SAY THANK YOU. That's it [grandma] doesn't like you anymore. Aren't you going to say thank you?"

Grandma doesn't like you anymore?! WTF? I was so frustrated with the situation that I wanted to run downstairs and say, "Thank you," for the kid. Clearly she's used to her mother's brain defect since it didn't seem to bother her.

I reatreated into the back of the house, vowing to try not to be like that with my children, and I didn't know whether to be sad for the little girl, or start laughing at the whole family.

Anglophilia

Sometimes, I get this crazy idea in my head that British guys are just inherently more hot than American guys. This simply isn't true. I've been to England. They're not all hot.

But the hot ones? MAN ALIVE. The hot ones are super hot. I think it's the accent.

I remember this boy, Tom, who was working with me at SOM. He was beautiful. He was British, naturally, and I think that added something to it, but he was beautiful all on his own -- with or without the accent.

He kind of looked like Syd Barrett in this photo here. Only, you know, this was taken in 1976, so at the time in 2005, Tom was much hotter than Syd Barrett.

30 July 2006

I've Always Had Excellent Timing. Except When I Didn't.

"It's a good thing I got this job when I did. This next week is my last week of Unemployment benefits."
"Wow. That's working the system to its fullest. Congrats."

[Currently Spinning: The Divine Comedy - My Lovely Horse]

A Tremendous Fear of Stamps



Ardal O'Hanlon is a pretty funny guy, but my favorite is his role as Dougal on Father Ted. BBC America is full of lies, though. I've never seen Father Ted on their 11 o'clock block, and soon my days of staying up past 11:00 will be over, anyway.

I guess I can always buy the dvd set.

29 July 2006

Lucky Little Girl!




Squee! This is probably the most adorable thing I've ever seen on YouTube. I'll bet Benji's a really good teacher (*wink*, squee!, *sigh*, *melts*)

Speaking of Benji and his cuteness, August 12th is when tickets go on sale for the SYTYCD tour. The tour passes through B-town on the 7th of October at the Wang theatre. Jen has already promised to go with me, and if you're around, you should go too-oo. It's going to be so awesome. I don't know what to wear, though. Maybe my "Please Marry Me Benji" sandwich board.

October 7th should give me enough time to lose the weight that I put on when I was unemployed, since I joined the Boston Sports Club today. I'm very excited about this. Aside from being two blocks away from the office where my NEW JOB will be, it offers yoga classes after work hours! The steam room in the locker room doesn't hurt at all, either.

Did I Ever Have the Self Respect to Say, "It's Over" Before? So Why Didn't You Believe Me?

I finally cut college boyfriend out of my life. I know that I've already told a few of my friends, and I don't know whether or not they believed me, because I didn't believe me at first. When I talked to my mother about it, I was calm and rational, so she believed me, but we also used words like "for now," and "until a better time."

I don't think I need him any more, even though I thought I did for a while. He was a good friend sometimes, but more often than not, he was selfish and just plain mean. I know he didn't mean to be, because he's a "nice guy,"* and all, but he was pretty much the worst specimen of ex-boyfriend I've ever had to deal with (*nice guy, not only in the way that most guys can be described as a "nice guy," but also in the way that means that he's afraid of conflict and will be an accidental asshole rather than have the balls to do the right thing if it means being "mean" in the conventional sense).

I've had ex-boyfriends tell me that the only reason I was at MIT was because of affirmative action (when I knew their SAT scores and class rank weren't as good as mine). I had a boyfriend use the last leg of our relationship as a means to hit on one of my friends. I had another boyfriend who borrowed money from me on a consistent basis.

None of them were remotely as bad for me as college boyfriend; none of them hurt me nearly as much as he did.

And he had the audacity to parade around pretending to be my friend, sending me music and calling me when he was bored. He doesn't have time for a relationship right now, but if he did, he wouldn't call me to talk about useless crap like cars and music and how work is going. He wouldn't even think about me.

And despite knowing all of this in the back of my heart, I took his calls, like the lonely, scared little girl I was [because of him]. I reached out for the scraps of friendship he was tossing in my direction. And I was grateful! How pathetic! I didn't want him back. I don't ever want him back, but still, I thought I could "rise above it." I thought I could be "bigger than this." I thought that I was cool.

It turns out, dumping his ass made me feel so much better than hanging on to his pathetic excuse for a friendship. Publicly calling him names on this blog got rid of him! (yes, it was deleted right after he saw it, and if I remember correctly, no one who reads this regularly saw it before he did) I know it was kind of mean (but not really, because the way out last conversation went, he probably did think that he was the guy I was talking about), and even though I was pissed beyond belief at him, it wasn't out of anger that I called him out, but out of genuine desire for him to finally comprehend that NO, I DON'T WANT TO BE WITH YOU. EVER. EVER AGAIN. JESUS CHRIST, DO I HAVE TO TATTOO IT ON MY FOREHEAD? DO I HAVE TO WRITE IT IN BLOOD? I DON'T FUCKING WANT TO BE WITH YOU. EVER AGAIN. Seriously.

The funniest part of all of this is that if he had been a man about dumping me, maybe in some alternate universe we could have been friends, even though I know it was the worst possible thing in the world for me.

So thank you, college boyfriend. I guess. It took a whole year, but the idiotic "friendship" spell I had over myself was finally broken.

*And I only write this because I'm so happy about it I want to scream it off the rooftops. I know there's still anger and resentment, deep down, and it will probably always be there, but I'm finally in a better place about the whole thing. A less bitter place. And I only waited a few weeks to talk about it because I wanted to make sure I really felt this way.

28 July 2006

I might even be done before the next movie...

IMG_4359

A Trip to the Orthodontist

I was sitting in the orthodontist's chair this morning, when across the way, I overheard another orthodontist telling her ten-year-old patient, "No, of course it won't hurt! Nothing I do to you will hurt."

I started laughing, and Dr. W said that we should go over there and set the girl straight.

Later in the appointment, she came over to watch me get impressions done because her brother had told her that the alginate was "disgusting" and that you "couldn't breathe." The poor girl was terrified. I wanted to smack her brother upside the head, because you know he's a few years older than her, and he only said it to show off, and maybe scare her a bit. Nothing that happens in the orthodontist's chair is pleasant, but there's no reason to scare little kids -- and if she's scared of taking impressions...She's in for a real treat when she gets those bands on.

Her fears were slightly assuaged by the end of her visit, when she was told that she could pick any color in the world for her rubber bands. I guess that means she won't get the super cool braces I have, because I don't need rubber bands.

26 July 2006

I Told You I Liked the Hat

IMG_4326s

So I made one of my own.

Last night, I decided I wanted a Gryffindor scarf. A la Goblet of Fire. This time, I'm looking to make it using Plymouth Encore yarn instead of good old bargain bin Red Heart yarn. This is for two reasons. One is that since I made my last Potter scarf, I've stopped using bargain bin acrylic. Once the whole scarf was finished, it did feel nice, but it can't be blocked, and I'm pretty sure that over time it won't wear as well as it could. Now, I don't know this. Only time will tell, and the scarf is no longer in my posession (I guess that's reason number one and a half).

Reason the second is that the colors on the Azkaban/Goblet scarf are actually a little daker and a little deeper than the earlier scarves. It seems a little bit more sophisticated, and I want it to look accurate. Thus, even if I wanted them to, Red Heart colors just won't cut it -- not if accuracy is an issue.

However, the reason that I've had a browser open with all the yarn (plus Addi Turbos with which to knit this baby) in my cart all night long, was because I wanted to wake up, see the price one last time, and say "Okay. It's worth it," or "What?! Are you crazy?!" Because the other scarf was about the price you'd pay for a scarf at a store, even using discounted yarn, and this scarf...well...jeez.

The solution? I'm heading down to Windsor Button later today. If they have the yarn I need, I'll take it as a sign that it was meant to be. If they don't have it, I'll hem and haw here for a while, and probably end up with a box of yarn and supplies on its way to my doorstep before I go to sleep tonight.

25 July 2006

Lord, can you hear me now?

I saw Damien Rice and Fiona Apple at Mohegan Sun last night. It was...Okay. Damien plays for himself, and that's fine, but he's not a performer. That's okay, because I am madly in love with him and would have his babies if he let me, so I couldn't care less how he performed. He played Cold Water and Blower's Daughter, but not Cannonball, and he also threw in a few songs that I didn't recognize, making me think that his whole life is kind of a B-side. There was a funny lyric about how the girl he's singing to should "leave him for me, before one of us has accidental babies" Matt's friend, Klaire and I laughed about the odds of Damien Rice carrying an accidental baby, because that always happens to men I know. Evidently, "my" copy of O is so old that I'm missing an entire song! I hate it when that happens. That's what I get for discovering him too early, before the re-release of O with Unplayed Piano.

I couldn't track down a set list, but I posted some video on YouTube. Forgive the quality (we had nosebleed seats), and the fact that the songs are cut off (my camera is a p.o.s. that won't take video for longer than 2 and a half minutes):

Cold Water


Blower's Daughter


Fiona was...Well, she was having a mild meltdown. So evidently, this still happens from time to time (and I'm really not surprised, given her past), and in the middle of the show, she apologized for "being an asshole." It was one of those days and she was sorry that it was our day. She's still phenomenal, and I still love her, but in general the whole thing was kind of "meh." At one point during her performance, I stopped enjoying it and started feeling so sad for her, like I shouldn't be watching this sort of raw emotion. Like maybe something was really wrong with her, and we should just leave her be. Someone on the Internets pointed out that a lot of people go to concerts like this because the artists are able to convey emotions that the audience is unable to express in their every day lives. How exhausting it must be to be Fiona Apple all the time. Or Damien Rice. Music by both of them has helped me through breakups, because their music is about all that pain and sadness...And everything I am unable to convey on my own.

Also, I got some pretty good news today, but I want to wait until some details are sorted out before I share it.

And I don't think you've been visiting lately, but if you see this, BEN: SEND ME THE GD SNOW PATROL TICKETS YOU MEALY MOUTHED CROTCH PHEASANT! Just kidding. About everything except sending me the tickets.

24 July 2006

One Hundred Things You Should Have Done in Bed

1. What made you smile today?
Today, I smiled when I managed to figure out how to get myself to a Fiona Apple/Damien Rice concert after my ride flaked out. I smiled when I found a place to hang my Celtic cross. I smiled when I realized that the centipede is gone for good now, at least.

2. What were you doing this morning at 8a.m.?
Asleeping

3.What were you doing 15 minutes ago?
purchasing train tickets to Westerly, RI.

4. Something that happened to you in 1986?
That's the year my album went platinum.

5. Your prom nights?
Prom was just an excuse to put on a prom dress. The real fun was in planning Prom. A Night on the Orient Express! Truth be told, I only remember one prom. I didn't plan it, and it was a pretty awful experience.

The first prom I went to was pretty forgettable -- Sadly. Patrick had just gotten back from Dallas and barely had time to get a tux, and I had an 11:00 curfew. I don't even remember if we had time for dinner, since his flight literally put him in El Paso the afternoon of prom.

6. Last thing you said aloud?
"HA!"

7. Last thing someone else said aloud?
"Guess who I'm imitating"

8. Worst thing currently on television:
There's a lot of crap on the Television these days. Most of it crap that I watch routinely. So I couldn't say.

9. What was in the mail today?
Too early for mail.

10. How many different beverages have you drank today?
just coffee

11. What is your favorite part of the day?
I don't have a favorite

13. Current to do list ?
1. Find a job.
2. Organize sock drawer

14. What color is your toothbrush?
Purple

15. What is out your back door?
A dinosaur victrola listning to buck owens.

16. Any plans for Friday night?
Not currently

17. Least favorite place to shop?
What? I love to shop!

18. Last thing you bought?
train tickets to RI

19. Last gift you received?
Uh, Snow Patrol tickets -- If I ever GET THEM.

20. Funniest thing you heard all day?
My mom and Awbrey have a running joke about her teeth that I'm in on. We laughed about that for a while.

21. Favorite mug?
"Fuck off, I'm Knitting"

22. What color is your front door?
I have no idea. Brown, probably. I want a red one. Or a bright blue one.

Spill Your Guts:

1. First thing you did this morning?
Checked my voicemail

2.) Last thing you ate?
Pops with Peanut Butter Puffin cereal. I like mixin' cereals.

3. Is your cell phone a piece of crap?
Nope, it's pretty new.

4. What's something you look forward to most in the next 6 weeks?
Snow Patrol! Also, Lesley and Mr. Lesley's wedding.

5. What's annoying you right now?
Nothing

No way....

Q: Is there a person who is on your mind right now?
There are a few people

Q: Who is the last person you called?
Matt

Q: Do you look like your mom or dad?
Both

Q: Do you smile often?
I think so. Maybe not, these days.

Q: Do you think that someone is thinking about you right now?
Maybe

Q: Do you wish on stars?
Yes

Q: What is the most disgusting thing you ever ate?
Menudo, chorizo.

Q: Would you kill someone?
I don't know if I could. It would be a pretty unique circumstance if I were in the situation to potentially kill someone, and I don't think I'd have the backbone.

Q: When did you last cry?
I don't remember. Recently.

Q: Are you friendly?
I'm shy, but I'm not unfriendly.

Q: Are you keeping a secret from the world?
I don't really keep secrets, but I'm sure there are things I keep to myself.

Q: Whose bed did you sleep in last night?
Mine.

Apparently They're Considered Lucky in Japan

briar: oh god oh god oh god

Auto response from Peter: lunch

briar: there's a centipede in my room
briar: i do not like this
briar: i don't like it at all
briar: it's on my wall!
briar: what do i do?
briar: i need a boyfriend
briar: or my dad
briar: ack!
briar: it's moving!
briar: spraying it with windex and 409 didn't help
briar: peter i can't deal with this!
briar: I'm supposed to vacuum it up
briar: i can't
briar: i can't deal with this
briar: oh my god, it's moving again
briar: oh no
briar: oh oh
briar: it's in the ceiling
briar: okay it's "gone"
briar: but my floor is such a mess
briar: and they like dark damp places, and usually stick to baseboards, so I'll never really know
briar: eeeee this is so gross!
briar: i can't sleep
briar: because I know that's when it will fall on my face
briar: OH GOD IT'S COMING BACK OUT

And that's how the centipede ATE ME last night. Okay, fine. Nothing ate me. Mostly this sort of "dialogue" went on for a while longer while the centipede hung out on my wall (Peter came back just after the all-caps scream fest, but I was still doing most of the talking), and he finally convinced me to whack at it with a broom.

I scared it away, and finally got to sleep after 2:30 (let's put things in perspective a little by mentioning that I had gotten tired enough for bed at 11:30 last night). Using a broom, only when I was convinced that it wouldn't fall on me, or the floor, was the only way I could have been brave enough to do it. Lame? Maybe. Would I have called my boyfriend over at 11:32 when I first saw the thing? Uh. Yes.

I know, I know. That'll make 'em line up.

23 July 2006

The tears come streaming down your face when you lose something you can't replace

Sometimes I feel like I have a really good entry started in my head, and when I sit down to type, I can get a good first sentence out, maybe, then...Nothing.

I cleaned out a lot of drafts the other day - half formed thoughts that were never published, things about people I know that shouldn't be on the Internet, stories that should be told by someone who can tell a story. In other words, things that would be clever if they weren't written by me.

Sometimes it's just because I have nothing clever to say. Other times I have very clever things to say, but no clever way to say them. And then, sometimes, maybe there are things in the back of my mind that I should write about -- but I don't want to write about.

Like the unemployment thing. Maybe it would help if people knew how I feel right now. How I feel like it's a dirty word: "Unemployed." And how I feel dirty because of it. Or how clever synonyms like "in between jobs" no longer sound more clever. Instead, after a few months, they sound just as repulsive to me. Lately I feel like it's a label that I'm wearing on my lapel for everyone to see. Hello, my name is Unemployed. As though people in the supermarket on a Wednesday afternoon know.

I met someone at a party a few weeks ago, and after what I thought was a stimulating conversation about the hassle of finding a new apartment, we started talking about what we "do." He was talking about how he just starting his residency at a local hospital, and I became incredibly embarrassed and started talking really stupidly about how I'm "in-between jobs" (and I'm pretty sure I used air quotes and rolled my eyes. I don't remember if I explained how that was just the fancy way of saying "I collect unemployment checks" and then laughed nervously, but that's where it was headed). I was even more embarrassed when he excused himself to the other room, and at the time, I reasoned that it was the stink of "the unemployed" that drove him away, instead of my manic, nervous reaction to the question "what do you do?" Instead of rationalizing that he wasn't interested in speaking to me anymore because I was significantly younger than he was, or because of my attitude (and maybe my drunkenness), I reasoned that it was because I was an "untouchable."

I know I have such an unhealthy attitude about my situation right now, and I know it's not helping anything to be pessimistic and downtrodden, but what can I do about that? Will I feel better when I get a job? Am I doing permanent damage to my psyche? Even going to church makes me feel nervous, and why? Shutting myself up in my apartment certainly isn't going to help, so why do I do it?

I just don't know anymore. And I feel like such an uninteresting person these days.

And I don't know what to do about it, anymore.

[Currently Spinning: Coldplay - Fix You]

22 July 2006

Tired of taking shit that I don't deserve

She said let's go
I said hell no, I don't wanna be friends
She said kiss me
I said miss me, I don't wanna be friends
She said love me
I said shove me, I don't wanna be friends
She sat near me
Can't you hear me, I don't wanna be friends
She said trust me
Why so you can bust me? I don't wanna be friends
I think I'm gonna do what I damn well please
Cause I don't wanna be friends

Maybe there will come a day when you decide to walk away but I don't think so now

She said beg me
Why so you can peg me? I don't wanna be friends
I'm tired of taking shit that I don't deserve, Cause I don't wanna be friends

She said hurt me
I said squirt me, I don't wanna be friends
Can't you get it through your big thick skull
That I don't wanna be friends?

Maybe there will come a time when I could probably change my mind but I don't think so now

She said need me
I said leave me, I don't wanna be friends
She said love me
I said shove me, I don't wanna be friends
She said let's go
I said hell no, I don't wanna be friends

She said hold me
I said blow me
I don't wanna be
There's no need for me
I don't wanna be friends

-Cowboy Mouth, Friends

21 July 2006

Guys? The Chicken is Pissed.

It's called Pleasing To Your Ears. And it is.

A friend of a friend, Steve, has a pretty funny website/blog. You may have been directed to one or the other by me before.

He now has a podcast, as well.

Go! Forth! Listen! Subscribe!

I've waited here my whole damn life
And I've forgotten what I wanted

I found my high school journal while I was unpacking, so I started reading through it (as I do whenever I come across it, which is exactly what I do with the box, whenever I come across it -- although I try to limit time with the box because while it's funny to read my thoughts in my journal, being in the box is like being in the past, and no one should live in the past). Anyway, I found this passage:
I'm not saying I'm going to stay with him forever. My dad keeps telling me that "if it's going to happen, it'll happen. You can wait until you're out of college." If what is going to happen!?! I just want to go out with him a few more times before he leaves.
I started laughing out loud. "Hello? Are you there, God? It's me, Margaret. It's 'after college' now. Is this really what life is turning out to be?" I had to laugh, because it was either that, or cry (the ironic "happy" tears). Even at sixteen I really wasn't thinking that I'd be thinking about him again six years later, but for some reason, I really did think I'd be with him forever -- someday. It just made it easier to think in terms of "this Saturday," instead of "next year when he leaves for college." Thinking about him is still where I default whenever I'm not in a relationship, or when I'm trying to convince myself to leave my current relationship. Thinking about him makes me feel sixteen again. Full of hope. Full of girlish desire. Full of the bubbling, happy feeling that I'm brand new, and anything can happen, and that anything will happen.

Six years. Six years was a long time ago. I'm not so brand new anymore. I've been broken, and I've glued myself back together a few times. But I am wiser. And stronger. I'm not as foolish, and not nearly so naive, anymore. I also realize that he's probably the Kitty Shcherbatsky to my Levin1; the Amelia Sedley to my Dobbin2. He's my unattainable person, who probably isn't everything I imagine him to be anymore.

Sometimes I just want to wake up next to someone, and know that someone is there. Going through life with me.

But I also know I want it to be real, for once - or maybe for a second time in my life.
And I can hold out for that. I will hold out for that.

I know it's going to be a while before I stop needing to be in a relationship. I'm a relationship-aholic. I can't live without relationship-ahol. (Sorry, I couldn't resist). I'm starting to embrace the single wagon, though. Slowly. And if, from time to time, I still need to envision a world where I will one day run into him on the street, and we'll be able to pick up where we left off when I was sixteen? What's so wrong with that right now? I think I'll know that I found the guy when I can stop thinking about him once and for all. I was pretty close once, and I have nothing but grattitude towards him for that -- even though It didn't work out as well as I wanted it to. At least I learned from him that despite how sad and broken I have been, someone else who is suited for me is probably out there.

Anyway, I went out to buy new curtains earlier today, and was thankfully inside before the raging beast of a storm:

IMG_4244

But, sadly, when I carelessly walked out of my room with some mail in my hands, I broke the spoon to my chicken sugar bowl:

Spoon


These days, I really can't win 'em all.

1Anna Karenina
2Vanity Fair

[Currently Spinning: Snow Patrol - Ways & Means]

19 July 2006

2 Days, 2 Weird Dreams

I have had two weird dreams in the past two days; both dreams good in their own way.

I can't really share the one from two nights ago (yes it was dirty ;) but last night, I dreamed that I was going to the ballet with the orchestra. It was a weird combination of me now and me then, because I was clearly trying to get to the ballet from work, but everyone from high school was there. I was dressed up, but I hadn't been able to find a date -- or so I thought. When I got there, Patrick was also there, and we sat next to each other and just settled into being completely comfortable with each other, holding hands, putting our arms over each other's shoulders, and he kept kissing my temple.

We ended up getting cheated out of the ballet (the performance was about thirty seconds long, then they were showing old clips of old debutante dances on a TV mounted up in the corner. We decided it was completely lame, and left the room. It turns out, we were supposed to be in the high school (it just looked nothing like my high school), and so we went to search for Dusty's room so we could hang out somewhere. I was getting mixed signals from Patrick, and at some later point, when I went to the restroom, I came back to overhear him explaining to Sara how he was dating someone who was in Australia, and that he'd either have to break up with her before he went out there to visit her, or he'd probably stay with her because it cost so much to go out there and then not stay with the person.

I was kind of crushed, but also felt a competitive surge rise inside me, and I thought that if I could be completely charming that night, maybe he'd reconsider being with me again, but I kept saying really stupid things.

We talked about High-Q some, and a bunch of people I haven't seen in a while were there. Mike, Nicky and Daniel Bujanda were sitting in one corner, talking about how Mike took Patrick's place on the High-Q team (which isn't true -- no one really took Pat's place, or was that just in my heart? Joke). Dixie was in another corner, and she was really happy to see Patrick, but really cold to me. I didn't know what to think, but before I had time to analyze it, Patrick said we were leaving. So Sara, Peter, and I got to his car, and he was taking us home, but he kept driving backwards, and not really paying attention to the road (so not Patrick!) -- and searching for this one song to play for us, if it wasn't on the radio before midnight. We started listening to some matchbox 20 song, and I thought that was the song he wanted us to hear, but it wasn't. He was going to take us to his parent's house to listen to it, and I remembered his parent's house looking like what it looked like in one of my waaay old dreams (So weird!).

I woke up to that warm, fuzzy feeling when you see an old friend. But the thing is, the only place I'll ever see him is in my dreams.

Peter is living with him right now; his brother, one of my best friends from high school, who I talk to nearly every day -- and Patrick hasn't once talked to me, or even said hello through Peter. So I can only assume he's stopped caring, and probably never will again. I guess as long as I don't let it interfere with my relationship with Peter (uh...again)...I'll be okay, because honestly, it's not like I've tried that hard to contact him. And really, after three or four years...what am I even complaining about? Last time I talked to him on AIM (at 4 in the morning, Junior year at MIT), he implied that affirmitive action was the only reason I was there, and so it didn't end well.

18 July 2006

Disney's Flash Forward

When I went to see X3, I had an unsettling feeling that I knew I'd seen the actor who played Angel before, but I just assumed that was because he was a non-descript pretty blonde boy. Besides, the boy he reminded me of wasn't nearly so skinny. Or tall. Or crazy-lookin'.

But today, I was looking for episodes of Disney's Flash Forward (after a Serenity/Firefly kick), and I realized that Tucker looked vaguely familiar...and that I'd seen him in something recently.

After a little bit of IMDB research I learned that Angel and Tucker are, in fact, the same person: Ben Foster.

Also, it led me to the conclusion that I watched way too much Flash Foward way back when (it's also how I knew Kaylee, even though I told Laura at the time that "Flash Forward must be what I remember her from, but I only watched, like...one or two episodes." It turns out, I've seen them all. Yeah. I know.)

16 July 2006

Moving Briar and Alisa's Skank Asses: Part Duex

(Forgive the title - it's two inside jokes).

Teresa was a trooper yesterday. Even though she's on vacation here in Boston (well, Somerville), she helped Alisa and me schlepp our things to the new place (via UHaul).

We were able to rent a van for this trip (a van is much bigger and therefore somewhat more appropriate for moving than a Ford Taurus. But there was no CD Player, and we still made five pretty big trips -- as opposed to the nine we made last year in the bitty Taurus). There was a trip to Target where we actually got almost nothing that we were supposed to get (a fire extinguisher and dining room chairs, for instance), but I managed to acquire this gorgeous little mirror/shelf for my room, a waffle iron (!!! "Alisa! Now we can have waffles every....Six months!!!), and some new plastic tumblers (we kept breaking the glasses. So plastic it is!).

People on our new street are so nice, which is funny because it's a block away from our old house. No one offered to help us on our old street (save one story for the next paragraph), and everyone was offering to help on our new street.

The biggest problem we faced during this move was getting Alisa's box spring downstairs. Our stair entry has a low ceiling, and we've all bumped our heads (well, maybe not Jessica), or gotten stuck coming down the stairs (the doorway is also stupidly at the foot of the last stair, which is the only way it all fits inside, but is still inane), so we knew the only way to get the box spring out was to lower it from the front balcony, but we all had the same mental image of the box spring exploding into a million little wood splinters -- and some springs -- on the sidewalk below. Teresa decided it would be best to ask experts before we attempted this, so she asked the movers who were two doors down how we would go about getting the mattress and box spring into the van. Well, as it turns out, being three cute girls has its advantages. They didn't just tell us what to do -- they did it for us! It was too sweet, and they also offered to move one of our bigger boxes, too (which we didn't allow, but still -- so. sweet!). We were going to buy them beer, but they left before we had a chance. I hope they have enough good karma to last them a lifetime, though; and I guess that's better than beer...But still -- I wish we'd been able to get them something other than a "thank you!"

After one of our trips, we met our new Irish neighbor. He told us that he wanted to show us something...So we followed him to his place and went through his basement, and saw his pub. I'm talking...Bar, barstools, lots of alcohol, a HUGE widescreen TV (and a smaller TV behind that, ha!), and football? Rugby? memorabilia all over the walls. He was the sweetest man, and he gave us water and chatted with us for a bit. Apparently, once when he got pretty drunk, he offered to take his Korean tenants to Ireland. He paid their airfare, and hosted them with some friends of his. Then he called the local paper and they wrote a story (parts of it fabricated, but most of it true) about the hospitality in Korea and how this local Irishman wanted to extend the same hospitality to some girls he met there (those girls would be his tenants...So that's the part that's fabricated). He's introduced many couples, apparently -- so Teresa says we need to hang out with this guy, if not for the full bar, then for the trip to Ireland and future husband.

Seriously, guys. We moved one block down. Just beyond the "we keep to ourselves" border.

So, that's our new place, in a nutshell. My room is being decorationally-difficult, my knee really really really hurts :( and I'm a little sad we'll only be here for a year, but otherwise, I can't really complain.

And we were done moving by 9:00 PM this time. After taking breaks. And we only made 5 trips. And we weren't even packed before we left. And we still got to go to Target and IHOP. By far, it was a much better moving experience, except, sadly, there was no Jessica, and no "Moving Briar and Alisa's Skank Asses" mixed CD.

14 July 2006

The Best Thing About This Movie: The Hat

elizabethtown hat

Isn't it pretty? (And I mean the hat, by the way -- not Orlando Bloom, even though he is also gorgeous)

Matt, I admit I was a tad unfair to say that the movie was terrible. To be honest, when I wrote that, I was watching the scene with the memorial. I fast forwarded through Freebird, and while I enjoyed the music immensely, this isn't a movie I'm going to go out and buy after watching it once.

I'm going to go ahead and take it down a notch. I thought it was "okay." That's better than terrible, right?

This is What I'd Rather Do

movingfurniture

13 July 2006

You Know, Lulu from Gilmore Girls.

Is the girl in that annoying bellsouth commercial Rini Bell? I can't find any information about this on all the Internets, and I'm sure someone (*cough*Laura) can help me out, or speculate with me.

Passion Party

Hey, guys. Guess what I did last night...Go ahead, guess!

I went (with Teresa and also *gasp, shock, squee* - Alisa) to a Passion Party. If you don't know (I didn't), a Passion Party is like a tupperware party, but with toys instead of tupperware. Erm. You know. Toys. And massaging oils and spritzes and pheromone perfume and things like that. It wasn't weird or gross or icky or any of the other adjectives that Peter threw out there last night when I told him; it was actually a lot of fun.

We got to taste some things (on our left arm), and spritz some things (on our right arm) -- and it was nice to test some of the products (not the toys!), and nice to see some of the toys in action. It also removed some of the embarrassment from the whole thing (the wine probably helped with that, too).

The best part is that our friends who missed this party (namely Laura and Lauren) will be able to come to the one that Alisa and I host in a few weeks (August 4th at 8pm for anyone who's in town and interested).

We're going to need some more wine.

12 July 2006

FIRE!

Today, this really vicious storm passed by. There was powerful thunder and bright lightning...One set was so loud that the house shook and some car alarms went off...Then about ten minutes later, Teresa and I heard Fire Trucks:

IMG_4190


That's right...Lightning hit the house two doors down from us! There was a lot of smoke, and seven fire trucks (which my dad says is pretty standard for that sort of fire -- two ladders and five pumpers).

IMG_4191

That was our view for a good hour, until we went into the house because we were bored. Yeah...What? I've seen a warehouse on fire. Granted, I was three, and the only time I see it is in my nightmares, but still.

And then we went to play trivia at the Asgard. We didn't win, but it was nice to hear "Team Awesome" be announced, even though I messed up when I knew that one answer was "ruby slippers" after we turned in "Luke Skywalker's Light Saber."

07 July 2006

Yarn Conundrum

I have many items of knitterly news to report. Yarn news. Project news. And Questions.

First, I have...Well, the best one skein secret pal, ever. She puts me to shame (except I think the package I put together this month is pretty nice, too ;) I got this in the mail today:



Lorna's Laces (!!!), Regia sock yarn, and some stuff from her home: a postcard, a magnet not pictured because it's on my fridge already, and one of those really cool pencils that have the little plastic lead train inside them! Remember those?

Also, even though I've got a lot on my plate (that blasted second pomatomus, the feather and fan stole, and the frostflowers and leaves shawl that I'm probably going to start over -- again), I think I'm ready for my first sweater:

Somewhat Cowl


The Somewhat Cowl over at Knit and Tonic. Now here's the big question weighing on my mind: What yarn should I use? The pattern calls for Blue Sky Alpaca & Silk, from which there are many many colors to choose, and I wouldn't be opposed to working with it. The alternative that I'm thinking about, though, is Knitpicks Ambrosia. There are less colors, but instead of alpaca and silk, it's alpaca and cashmere. It's about the same price (the knitpicks might be a little cheaper, and shipping ends up being free because the order will be over $40, but I'm sure I can find some deals on the blue sky alpaca). I want something purple; I like shades like plum or wine (I'm really into the purple hues these days. And pink, but I have like twelve pink sweaters, already).

Has anyone worked with either one of these yarns? Or, if not, what do you think you would do? There isn't a big color selection over at knitpicks, which is unfortunate, but the cashmere appeals to me a little more than the silk (plus it'll be softer, with less sheen, I think). Thoughts? Opinions? Knitting friends and regular folk, both :) chime in as you see fit.

I'm out now, because there is some TV and a cup of tea waiting for me. And maybe a long walk -- or lots of knitting.

Everything's Going to Be Alright

I was in a really good mood today, like something had been lifted off my shoulders. I don't know what it was, and I couldn't put my finger on it, but while I was shopping, I just...felt so happy.

And then? And then, Ben called! I was in this little boutique and my phone rang, and I turned all red in the face and bolted out of the store, but then I got to talk to Ben for a while, and I saved my credit card, so it turned out pretty well in the end.

I think things are going to be okay, y'all.

06 July 2006

My Predictions Were Way Off!

I have a quick confession to make, and that's that once Benji and Donyelle were safe, I didn't pay too much attention to the results show tonight. I kind of packed. And washed dishes.

But anyway, my predictions were wrong! In the bottom three tonight:
Heidi and Ryan (gasp!)
Ivan and Alison (gasp! gasp!)
Jessica and Jamyz (erm...well, no gasp there)

I'm SO HAPPY that Dmitry and Ashlee weren't in the bottom three! Yay! The surprised looks on their faces were fantastic (I'm sure they were only surprised because of Dmitry's reputation -- because like I said, I really liked their routine last night)

Jessica and Jamyz, according to the judges, both have good technique, but they have NO personality. They didn't think that about Jamyz as much as Jessica, but it was implied. So the blahs are gone! Let's see what happens next week! Squee!

[Currently Spinning: KT Tunstall - Suddenly I See]

Oh Man...I'm Doing it Again...

...Blogging about So You Think You Can Dance, that is.

As the number of couples on SYTYCD dwindles down, I can't help but get sad because it will all be over soon. I know that next season, I'll love it again, even without Benji (because he's going to win this one), but honestly? Last season I wasn't attached to anyone. It's either that my reality TV addiction hadn't kicked in, or that there was no one completely special to me, but even shows like ANTM, where I favor some girls over others, I don't get seriously attached--like with Benji. Aaanyway...Here's my quick recap of last night:

Heidi and Ryan - Hip-Hop -- Oh my. Oh....my. Heidi and Ryan were amazing. I had no idea they had it in them, but Heidi was fantastic. I may have voted for them a few times when the Benji-line was busy.
Martha and Travis - Salsa -- . I did not like. It looked like the Salsa that I used to do with Joey on Saturday nights. It looked great for amateurs, but did not have what it takes to win SYTYCD. I kind of hope they're in the bottom three, even though Travis is so popular. IMO, he proved that he doesn't have what it takes to beat Benji. I do heart Travis, but this week's performance was not good.
Dmitry and Ashlee - Contemporary (to Fall Out Boy's Dance Dance) -- I thought it was extremely entertaining, and I think that Ashlee has an astounding personality that can actually make Dmitry look good. I know Dmitry is a good dancer, but I was so angry with him for being a bad partner. I noticed this week that the problem wasn't Dmitry. It was the blah girls he was with before. I should have figured, given that he dances with Heidi -- and Heidi is a great dancer, with a good personality (She's still not my favorite, but I can't put my finger on why).
Natalie and Musa - Disco -- Uh, isn't disco dead? It certainly was last night. There was nothing special in this routine; the choreography was bad, the dancing was mediocre - at least the tricks were good. Methinks things are cooling off between Natalie and Musa, as well.
Donyelle and Benji - "Vietnamese" Waltz -- Yes, yes, the Viennese waltz . When will Benji and Donyelle do something that's not completely...WOW? Never, is what I say. I was actually moved to tears -- yeah, that's right. I was crying. I spent an hour after the show voting 302 times instead of writing up this summary while it was fresh on my mind. What? There was a contest. I lost, but next week...Next week I will vote more than 660 times and beat that girl, *trixie*. The harlot.
Ivan and Alison - West Coast Swing -- Ivan and Alison were "okay." The unfair thing is that I've seen a lot of Benji's routines online, and because there are a set number of moves and how you execute them...Well, a lot of times I'd watch Ivan do something and think, "But Benji does it better." Unfortunately, I couldn't get past that. Their Swing was like Travis and Martha's Salsa. Amateur, but only by comparison.
Jessica and Jamyz - Hip-Hop -- Meh. Yawn. Especially after Heidi and Ryan's WOW performance; this hip-hop routine was kind of bland; like its dancers.

My predictions for bottom three tonight: Martha and Travis, Dmitry and Ashlee, and Jessica and Jamyz.

However, I won't be surprised if, instead of Martha and Travis, it's Ivan and Alison or Natalie and Musa. But I'm really bad at calling these things, so...

[Currently Spinning: Kitty Cat Dance]

05 July 2006

Because I'm Offended By It

Does Veronica Mars always open with the worst cut of We Used to be Friends in the world?

04 July 2006

The Life of A Perfectionist is Rife With Disappointment

ripping the sock :(

So? Did You Sleep With Him?

I keep repeating a conversation over and over in my head, sometimes laughing at the conversation, other times laughing at the surprised look on the girl's face when someone else started laughing harder than her:

"Did you sleep with him?"
"Ha, no," she responded simply, while one of our other friends fell to the floor laughing hysterically.
"Ha...ha...Wait. Why are you laughing?" she asked the friend on the floor.

The answer was revealed between more peals of laughter and the wiping of some tears. The rest of the conversation was just as good, but it reveals a bit too much, so I can't post it. But to me, the funny part is that she was only shocked after she understood that she and our friend were laughing at the same thing, and the look on her face was priceless (all of this happened over the course of about two seconds, but in my head it plays in slo-mo).

I love how the hilarity of the question "did you sleep with him?" actually sent one of its victims to the floor in tears.

And just in case you need any more confirmation that British TV is better than American TV in every imaginable way:

Strange Dreams

I kind of want a sewing machine, as though I need more craft related things to keep me occupied. I barely have enough time for the knitting as it is -- and I'm unemployed!

My real reason for posting right now, though, is to document the strange dreams I had last night.

Dream the First:
I was at my grandmother's house, and we were either packing up boxes for her to leave or unpacking boxes of Christmas supplies. I remember being in the different rooms in the house very vividly, talking to my mom or my grandmother. Everything was a little bit...bigger, cleaner, and in better condition than when she was there. I was dating someone (and yes, I know who he was, but I'm not publishing it here), and I was sitting on the reclining chair while he sat on the side of the loveseat that was closest to me. He put his hand on my head and stroked my hair a few times. We were talking about the most mundane things, but the gesture, and the feeling I got being next to him was so warm and loving, and I was ridiculously happy when I woke up (at six in the morning).

I rolled over and went back to sleep, only to have Dream the Second:
I was at some sort of convention that was school related, but it felt like the StuCo conventions I went to in high school rather than something I would have done at MIT. Still, everyone there was someone I knew from college. Team Awesome was there -- but so was college boyfriend. I was hanging around my friends, but then I went off to do something. When I came back, one of my friends was on the floor, sitting across from college boyfriend, and they were wildly making out. Honestly? The first thought that came to my mind was that the friend had been through a lot, and I understood. I wasn't mad at her, and I wasn't mad at him. I wasn't okay with it, either, but I didn't have the capacity to cope with it because I had been up all night and was tired. I went to the bathroom, but to do that, I had to pass them. When I got into the hallway, I turned around, and college boyfriend was there, stammering and red in the face, apologizing. I told him that I honestly couldn't care less what he had to say about it, and that it was his business, and that even if it bothered me, he wasn't the one I wanted to talk to about it. And then I walked off.

At lunch, I picked up food that was supposed to be paid for, but evidently we were supposed to get cards at the beginning of the day, and I had never gotten one. I had a screaming match with the guy at the register, and he wouldn't just let me go and the line kept getting longer and longer and longer. I told him that my idiot group leader had never given me a card, but then I realized Teresa was in my group, too, and she had just handed him one, so I was confused and angry and why did everything have to keep happening to me?!

The next scene was in front of a lecture hall where I was waiting with Jessica to go to class , but we were waiting for these boys we liked to come by. When it was time for class, we went into the lecture hall, where Alisa and Teresa were sitting all the way at the top, where I wouldn't be able to see without my glasses. I was still unsure how to act about my friend and college boyfriend, and I was trying to be friendly, but it was hard. Laura and Jessica joined us, and I got to sit next to Laura, but this guy, Gabe was on my left, and then the desks started closing in on me, and I started feeling claustrophobic. I looked back and saw that college boyfriend was up there, too, and I chose the claustrophobia over making eye contact with him.

Kirstie Alley ended up being the professor, and the class ended up being Calc 2, and she went so fast I couldn't take notes and I didn't understand, and I was scared and wanted to cry, and it's a wonder I ever passed Calc 2. I woke up being terrified I hadn't studied properly.

03 July 2006

Books As Movies. The New No.

Add two more to the list of books I've read whose movies I want to see because the book was so good (also because I do. not. learn):

Running With Scissors
The Time Traveler's Wife

They don't have any casting for the Time Traveler's Wife, but one of the imdb boards claims this movie is coming out in May 2007, and it's being directed by Gus Van Sant, so it has some promise -- or could be a major let down. Someone else recommended that we watch the Lake House while we wait for this movie. I don't like to agree with people who say blanketed inane statements like that ("Oh, hey, you liked this love story? Go see this chick flick that's kind of like it but not really. At all."), but I did think about The Time Traveler's Wife when I saw the previews for the Lake House. That's not to say it was particular to that movie though. I found it happening any time I heard about time travel or distance via time (the Machinist, for instance, gave me the same feeling, just because of the cut sequences). So anyone who doubts this movie can be well made because of the spliced time istn't remembering how successful it can be to a story (the Godfather II, anyone? If you watch it on TV, it's cut so that you see Vito's story, then Michael's story. It's so much better on DVD where the stories are spliced together. Or movies like Memento, where you see the past in snippets. It can work).

The reason I haven't learned, though, is because of my experience with many many great-books-turned-into-craptastic-movies: The Count of Monte Cristo, Vanity Fair, and my most recent disappointment, Everything Is Illuminated (which was the only one of the three that was actually a good movie on its own, but had very little to do with the book; just enough to distress me). The biggest thing about the movie Everything Is Illuminated that bothered me was the story altering portrayal of Alex's grandfather as a Jew, and subsequently, his flagrantly unnecessary suicide! The suicide does happen in the book, only after Alex's grandfather explains his story to Alex -- in one of the most excruciating parts in the book, Alex's grandfather recounts his betrayal of his Jewish friend, Herschel, and his justification for handing Herschel over to the Nazis. It's heart-breaking but, in a cruel human way, we end up understanding. Both book and movie are about the uncertainty and questions that bury 2nd and 3rd generation survivors, but they tell the story from two different ends of the spectrum -- and while the cast and setting were terrific, the movie script droped the ball where the book is wildly successful. The beauty of the book is that we finally understand, simply, that there are no easy answers -- that ultimately, the choices the characters have to make; the choices they had to live with, make their lives a big agonizing question. Making Alex's grandfather Jewish is a cheat because it simplifies his moral dilemma. Instead of living with the guilt of what he has done, he lives with the guilt of abandoning his faith -- which, as the movie shows, can be easily reclaimed. This change is what makes grandfather's suicide nonsensical. How do you redeem yourself after you've betrayed someone you love? How do you reclaim your youth or your innocence? How can you undo what you've done? These are the kinds of questions the book poses: the ones that cannot really be answered. The movie tries to provide some answers, but they only cheapen the journey. If you're going to read the book, watch the movie first. That seems to appease some people, although I then question their love of reading, because there's no way you can like them both tremendously, if you think about how the moive is less successful in all the wrong ways.

Anyway, like I said, Van Sant can either be wildly successful with the Time Traveler's Wife, or wildly WRONG. I am an eternal optimist. I think it can be done well, and I hope that Van Sant can be the guy to do it.

ZOMG!!!!11!! Casting on to Snow Patrol!

Apparently, I haven't heard the latest news on Zach Braff, Snow Patrol, or knitting!:

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I can't wait until this DVD comes out. I need to add it to my collection posthaste! With all possible speed! Ahhh!

*Hats off to Steve for this. The Casting On to Snow Patrol DVD cover is brilliant! BRILLIANT!

02 July 2006

Summary of the Weekend

This weekend was a blur, if you hadn't noticed from the last post/lack of updates.

Laura, Teresa, and Jessica were in town -- it was a team awesome reunion! Unfortunately, after two whirlwind days in Boston, Laura, Teresa and Alisa are in Barbados now, so Jess stayed here a little bit longer to keep me company this weekend. Last night we had a double date with Lesley and Steve at Tamarind House, followed by mojitos on the patio at the flat. We also knit a lot, and watched too much TV.

Friday was a flurry of activity. The five of us went to our Indian restaurant and had the lunch buffet, then went shopping on Newbury Street (Alisa bought 3" heels!), and then to see The Devil Wears Prada. I liked it for the same reasons I despised the book, but Teresa hated it for the same reasons I liked it. One of the biggest reasons I was a fan was because in the end, you have a little bit of sympathy for Anna Wintour Miranda, and Andy makes a choice, instead of just bitching about being Miranda's assistant, then quitting, and finally writing awful chick-lit because everyone knows the New Yorker would never actually publish her. I did think it was a little cheesy that her boyfriend takes her back in the end, and also find it a little abhorrent that he was a chef, instead of a super-fantastic philanthropic first grade Bronx teacher, though.

After The Devil Wears Prada, we went to dinner at Christopher's. All night, I swear I was giddy from being around Laura and Teresa for the first time in a year and not drunk (okay, I was also drunk), and things may have gotten a little rowdy at the restaurant, but that's okay because they stuck us between the bathroom and the kitchen, anyway. We ended the evening at the Big Easy, and we all came home together (instead of getting in the bachelor party limo), and then we stayed up until Laura, Alisa, and Teresa had to leave for the airport at four in the morning.

I really miss my friends. After a few rounds of shots, we decided that we would try our hardest to settle near each other in a few years. It looks like Chicago is a fairly viable option, or even LA -- even though I'd be pushing for the Southwest if I thought anyone else would go for it. I've still got grad school ahead of me, and it might have to wait until after then, but it gives me something to look forward to, and I can be pretty flexible with where I end up, so I'm game.

I plan on adding a few things to the previous entry later tonight. Some of it Some of the information in the previous entry is slightly innacurate - only because it implies that I did everything, or was the catalyst of everything. Otherwise, it's a pretty apt description of how I spent my day with my friends. And it's true -- we were called drunks and judged all over town. That equals a successful day in my book.