Friday, October 31, 2008

backwards and forwards

4 more days!

(i think i need to clean our mirrors.)

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

1982 or 1928, part 2

i just got the most sudden/stabbing ache in my right knee. like, hold onto the side of the couch and grimace while i watch reruns stabby. i headed over to to confirm what i already knew: the next two days are going to be cloudy and rainy. why oh my must my joints predict the weather?

also: all you hydrox lovers! run, don't walk to your local grocery store aisles. the usually-discontinued cookie has been reissued for a 1908-2008, hundred year celebration. nom nom nom.

also: i borrowed all about eve from the library and have already started my under-the-quilt fest, tummy filled with taters. i even took out my teeth to get extra cozy.

i'm in the middle of an experiment, friends

it's called working + maintaining the new cleaning and cooking standards + all whilst cc is out of town and no one is here to monitor me. the first couple days...weren't so hot. i may or may not have flung clothes everywhere and left the peanut butter jar open and my makeup all over the bathroom floor. i may or may not have gone grocery shopping (20 points!) but then only unpacked the refrigerator items, leaving the rest of the bags and goodies on the floor ( 25 demerits!).

today at work (doesn't that sound funny?) i couldn't stop obsessing over the mess and the thought that my library book was overdue, the mail tossed on the floor and my countertops unsprayed. it was honestly interfering with my ability to absorb new info. which is lame but, well, i never said i was cool.

as soon as i walked in the door, i grabbed my library book and returned it before even taking off my coat. (and picked up another book and another dvd, making my current grand total 4 books and 3 dvds, i'm a library addict don't try to stop me). when i got back home again, i put away the groceries, sorted the mail, watered my herbs and collected the dirty dishes scattered throughout. then i sat on my brown couch in my blue hoodie and watched marion jones' surprisingly boring interview with oprah. zzz.

i'm going to continue my self-inflicted push by cooking a real dinner tonight, even though i'll be the only one eating it. cider chicken + mashed potatoes + cucumber salad. pretty much martha stewart around here. minus the mom khakis. (tho. could those be her secret to success? hmmm.)

Monday, October 27, 2008

today went well

rode the #45 for the first time in a long time. wore mascara and a cute cardigan. did some light training/rope learning; nothing too strenuous yet. everyone's being super nice and worried about overwhelming/inundating me with too much information to which i can only say:

"you know nothing of being overwhelmed."

i asked them like twelve different times if i really get to eat lunch during the day. they probably think i have alzheimers.

i'd be lying to your face if i said i was 100% thrilled to be back in the game (i think only a robot would), but i couldn't have landed at a better place and it feels good to work my brain in a different way, flex those number and business muscles that have been napping for a bit.

plus, i do seem to get more done when i've got more to do if that makes sense? and since i really, really want to keep moving my book along (still editing, but at a very steady pace now, and nearly finished with draft two) this is good timing for that phenomenon. i'm also signed up to volunteer once a month at a literacy program and am researching some singing/dancing opportunities, too. i think my (barely restrained) inner ham is feeling ignored.

but don't worry. i'm still reserving pah-lenty of time for j.b. fletcher, ben matlock, frasier crane and jack mccoy. i never leave my true friends behind.

Friday, October 24, 2008

veins, same sex marriage and mary poppins

i wish my phobias were obscure and unlikely to be stumbled upon, like green people or giraffes that smoke, but unfortunately they happen to be:

a. plane rides
b. needles/veins - mine, specifically
c. the phone

yesterday, i handled two of 'em within hours of each other. shockingly, dr. phil wasn't waiting for me with a medal and special certificate afterwards. confusing.

first, i had to have blood drawn for a routine check-up. gross gross gross awful gross and awful. i just switched doctors from a militant lady with a mustache to this wilson-but-nerdier guy who doesn't accept hmo's and subsequently keeps his practice really small and non-hectic. it all felt rather homey, him tapping the vein instead of a crabby lab lady, then testing my pee right there in front of me. pretty much a norman rockwell painting in motion.

i did okay, although midway through he informed me my mind was "involuntarily shutting down my veins" because i was scared and that's the body's response to danger - whether real or imagined. so the "blood wasn't flowing - just dripping." to which i interrupted with: "shut the hell up and do your job." don't get me wrong, i still really like him. just maybe not so much chatting next time.

second, i joined my friend steve at the phone banks to call strangers about voting no on proposition 8. a "yes" win would eliminate the right for same sex couples to marry. honestly, i don't give a dang what you personally feel about marriage and/or homosexuality and/or religion. (not entirely true, but for the sake of this argument let's pretend it is.)

this is about human rights - equal rights - for all americans. no matter your gender/skin color/sexual orientation, you deserve the same benefits, the same treatment, as everyone else. those rights include the legal benefits of marriage - plain and simple.

just as we say "what the f?!" when we remember women couldn't vote less than 100 years ago, i hope our friends in the future (while flying) will say the same about all this nonsense.

quick time out to enjoy video:

calling strangers in the evening over heated topics is really not my cup of tea, but this shit matters. even if most people yelled "get real!" in my ear, i helped spread the word and hope you will, too.

thank you for your votes, my people

it looks like, aside from

a) my lovely husband


b) anonymous

the bangs have it.

i tend to agree with mr. anonymous on the get-a-job-first thing, not so much because my visible forehead = i'm smart, but because i might feel all "not me" at interviews and that's never good. (also, haircuts are expensive, yo!)

and to avoid being one of those creeps on what not to wear who won't cut her hair because "my husband will be mad!" i'm trying to ignore cc's "no thank yous" - even though he'd be staring at my bangs the most hours - because i know he'll get into whatever i choose.

which isn't to say he won't throw a lamp at my head ala my little brother circa 1990 after my mom came home with a perm. but then he'll get into it. eventually.

so unfortunately no real-life pics to show yet, but bja most appreciates all your opinions and will continue with her up-to-the-minute hair analysis. and if you're from california, please vote no on prop 8.

subtle segue, right?

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

a poll about life's important questions

i've been going back and forth (and back and forth) on the bangs issue for some time now. the last time i really had them i was five years old and loved getting my whole face painted like a strawberry.

but i love the thought of an insta style and i do kind of have the forehead for it and dang - it's just hair, no? always grows back. (we hope.)

my lovely and talented friend jen (hearts!), unprompted, photoshopped then emailed me the pic below to help steer my decision.

i'd like to use the comments section to take a poll here, comparing this pic with the foreheady one i posted last night. and pretty please can some of you lurkers out there de-lurk (under "anonymous" is fine!) and help a sister out?


Tuesday, October 21, 2008

we done bought ourselves a cute new cammy with some wedding money

so you should plan on seeing more pics in the times ahead.

for example:

this is me very happy after the ups man delivered it a day early:

and this is me very unhappy with this season's dancing with the "stars"- in the words of cc: frankly, i'm unimpressed:

go home, cloris!

Monday, October 20, 2008

i don't feel like i'm bah humbug

about too many things - it's more likely i'm filled with glee over strange and small things - but one thing i simply cannot get behind is halloween for grownups. i have many a friend who tells me in september he/she's busy planning their costume to which i can only say "...oh." god love the people who love it and i certainly don't want to take away their joy - but here are a couple of my thoughts on why it sucks:

a) i don't drink. i think, once you hit 11, you'd have to be drunk to put weird crap on and prance around in the cold with other people wearing weird crap. all without the promise of candy in a pumpkin basket! (sidenote: remember those plastic jack o'lantern bucket things mcdonald's gave out 15-ish years ago? lo-ved.)

b) i really paid my dues in the dress-up-with-makeup category after 15 years of dance recitals and musicals. i've worn so many strange things on stage, (ladybug, chick with blue face and tin cans in my hair, worm) that spandex and glitter just don't impress me. (i felt a powerful impulse to add the word "much" to the end of that sentence, ala shania twain.)

c) the thought of "michael jackson" making out with "hermione granger" after one too many apple pie shots makes my tummy churn.

i love kids in costumes, i love handing out fun size snickers, i love baking cupcakes with candy corn goblins on top; i just want to see your i.d. before you partake, thank you.

Saturday, October 18, 2008

i would like to brag about a few things

1) yesterday i bought a pair of jeans for $5.70

2) they were used, which = i'm a saint for reusing old stuff

3) after purchasing, i placed them in my own brought-along bag, which = i'm a saint for not using plastic

4) they look yummy on my bum

Friday, October 17, 2008

i read this thing about suri cruise

in some tacky tabloid while waiting in a too-long target line, saying tom and katie clear out teddy bear stores when suri wants to buy a teddy bear and empty gymnasiums when she wants to bounce on bouncy things. while i realize there are probably some good reasons for their choices - crazy people sometimes steal famous babies and/or we non-scientologists might leak some of our sanity into her ears - i mostly think it's sad they make her play solo all the time and can only see bad things coming from it.

that being said.

don't you wish someone would run around and clear public places out for you? what if thrift stores or the gym or starbucks were always empty and you could just stroll along and take your time and maybe do a yoga stretch if you were feeling stiff waiting for your caramel macchiato? nobody smacking their bubbalicious or shuffling their feet or breathing out their carbon dioxide? oh, i would hit the stores and shore up the economy so fast, joe six pack - or plumber for that matter - wouldn't know what hit him.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

an exciting report you're dying to read

san francisco's main squeeze in the grocery store department is a little place called safeway. my business consultant hub-sband has explained to me (and i've pretended to understand) why supermarkets are regional businesses vs. national, so i'll just assume you don't know anything about safeway unless you live here. (you're not missing anything and should focus your jealousy, instead, on the peeps who get to shop at piggy wiggly, because - wow.)

point is, we don't have much choice, so when i'm feeling too poor for whole foods i shop at safeway. because there are a few of them scattered through the city, we use variations on their names to differentiate between them. the one we usually go to, down in the marina, is called "sexway" because, well, i guess people find sex there? married people don't know about sex, but i read in a magazine once it involves nudity. every aisle has a lot of zack morris lookalikes wearing sweaters around their shoulders, holding hands with their lululemon-clad girlfriends named buffy, and buying pricey beers. it's super fun.

gaggy, but until recently, the only close alternative has been "unsafeway" - aptly named for its, well, lack of safeness. but! cc informed me they re-did the place and so i gave it a shot tonight. and why, hello normal people! where have you been all my life? oh, you're actually looking at price tags, too? oh, you don't have an obnoxious 12 carat diamond on your finger either? oh, you're picking up 12 cans of tuna for a dollar, too? sweet jesus what a relief. may i never see buffy in line again.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

i think there should be a store

where you can rent cute interview outfits. lord knows i'd use it. my interview garms are s-a-d right now, but when your whole reason for wanting to look good is acquiring cash you don't have, it somehow doesn't seem quite right to spend money before it's a done deal? of course there's the spend money to make money philosophy, but i'm not sure that applies to jersey dresses and chunky necklaces.

and so i sit here and think over every potential, appropriate combination of workish things i own. there's the pale pink, 3/4 oxford shirt from j crew i bought 4.5 years ago after college graduation? but no, the buttons now gap and stacy and clinton would punch me. (note: cc isn't complaining.) or, er, the now-dated white blazer i bought during the same trip or the gray urban outfitters pants with the weird pockets that bulge when i sit down or the wrap dress from the gap that is so low-cut, i once had to tell my boss in the middle of a meeting:

"i'm sorry you can see my whole chest right now."

i always manage to piece together something that works okay, but there's something to be said for feeling really effing great about your appearance when you walk into that interview. not that tan pants with tan pumps and a brown button down shirt doesn't scream you know you want me it's just that you have to put a little extra swagger in your step to sell it.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

i met bill ayers; guess i'll never win now!

in the fall of 2005 i was working at beacon press, marching through the snow every morning to a job i didn't appreciate enough. i got to do a slew of interesting things, including attending conferences showcasing some pretty legendary authors. at one such conference, i had the pleasure of meeting a beacon author, a man i frequently chatted on the phone with and sold books to: bill ayers.

we shook hands, we talked about the weather, he signed my book. it was a pleasant 10 minutes. and according to some, should ruin my chance at any future political aspirations.

don't want to delve too deep into the whole obama deal here - but couldn't help pointing out the absolute lunacy of mccain's claim. you know/meet bill ayers = you support terrorism? shut the hell up.

no, i don't approve of what ayers did and neither does obama. but turns out life's a little complicated and we can't just talk to people we agree with 100%. nor do i think we should.

apologies for the bad quality pic - i'm tired and packing for sf and don't really know my way around a flash. click for a better view, but just in case it still sucks - here's what he wrote:

peace! justice!

to amy -

with hope for a world at peace and in balance...

best, bill ayers

glad you're at beacon!

add an apron and it's bliss

bja makes apple butter:

Monday, October 13, 2008


isn't it sad when your mom drives you to an abandoned railroad bridge in the woods near your old high school for a lovely tour of the foliage and says:

"this looks like it's probably where the cool kids come to hang out"

and you look around and see lots of beer cans and old campfires and agree - then realize you never "came to hang out" there in all your formative years?


in other news, we made a delightful batch of apple butter today and poured it into some leftover mason jars from our wedding. very laura ingalls wilder and very cool kid.

Sunday, October 12, 2008

the reason i don't understand rocks

as part of her wedding gift to me, my friend stephanie gave me back a box of the old notes i wrote her in high school. we had a very (very) prolific note-writing career, we did, and aside from the occasional spasm of humiliation, i'm really enjoying some of the gems i crafted. here is a taste of my favorites:

do you ever actually study for math? i never have in my life.

why must every teacher in this school have a picture of einstein hanging up? please.

i can't wait to wander the halls this afternoon.

the girls were getting all excited and everyone was like "yeah! we should try and get the groton school field and have a soccer scrimmage at the party!!! omigod what a good idea yeah!!" i was like hello this is a party. you're supposed to eat and sit down.

when a teacher says "your homework tonight is studying" i say to myself 'great! i have no homework!'

i'm frightened that my TI-82 will get stolen.

these pants have a lot of stains on them and i just want to read my mary higgins clark book.

i am very proud: today i did my spanish homework and - surprise! - even my geology. it's been about a month, maybe two, so i figured maybe i should start?

my mind is gone, have to go find it.

Tuesday, October 07, 2008

reality bites describes my life

Interviewer 1: Now, radio is all instinct, Lelaina. Do you know where all the radio comes from? The gut. It's all in the gut. Because when you think on your to go from your gut. And my gut is telling me that, uh...this isn't gonna work out.
Lelaina: Maybe your gut's just saying you're hungry or...
Interviewer 1: Oh, no, no, no, no. It's telling me that,'re overqualified for this job.
Lelaina: I'm really not that smart.

Interviewer 2: No offense, sweetie, but you don't have any experience on a newspaper. You're TV.
Lelaina: Well, I'm trying to make my transition to print journalism.
Interviewer 2: Ah. Why?
Lelaina: Well, newspapers are the last watchdogs...of our... our government. They enforce the checks and balances. And one half-hour of TV only adds up to...
Interviewer 2: OK. All right. Define irony.
Lelaina: Irony. Uh...Irony. It's a noun. It's when something is... ironic. It's, uh... Well, I can't really define irony...but I know it when I see it!

on loan

since cc travels so much, it's a bummer to leave home when he's not. midweek sleepovers are always a treat for us, as are the midday lunches (you should try my foreman grill tuna melt: it's special) we've been sharing for the past month. but! with unemployment still my middle name, a very pregnant cousin needing some amy time, and my tum rumbling for a pink-frosted dunkin donut - i'm heading east. on loan to the fam while cc brings home the bacon. (and plays computer games. and drinks diet cokes.)

call me loony, but i feel like a mama bird leaving her chicks behind; i did the laundry, changed the sheets, made extra food for dinners - i'll probably label things and text every few hours to make sure he's eaten and gotten some sunshine, too.

but as much as i'll a) miss my goob and b) worry about the implosion of my delicately balanced household - i'm happy to head home and sprinkle a little bja goodness back east.

christie, you must dress your children as follows for halloween:




Monday, October 06, 2008


after coughing and coughing and gasping and coughing and coughing i finally figured out ohhhhhh: i'm having an asthma attack. like, a two-week asthma attack. tho i've had this fun disease since i was 8 or so, it's always been the low-grade chronic kind, always poking me on the shoulder hi! i'm here!

(have you ever walked up a hill with me? it's a special form of a torture for the both of us)

but only really bad during exercise and extreme temps. never this holy god, stop the suffocating, may i have a large plate of oxygen with my cup of tea please?

not exactly sure why i'm suddenly blue-lipped, but i do know: i'm an idiot and have refused to take any meds for the past year, not wanting all those chemicals in my bod. or something hippie dippie dumb like that.

luckily i found a just-expired emergency inhaler and i'm eating it like candy until my doctor's appointment on wednesday where i fully intend to suck down all chemicals known to man.

Sunday, October 05, 2008

a confession

i kind of like doing domestic-y things.

i realize this conveniently coincides with me not jobbing it yet/having little-to-no major responsibilities, but still! unemployment isn't necessarily a recipe for clean house success and frankly, i'm relieved to find i even have it in me.

(one of the groomsmen's speeches at our wedding recalled a conversation we had where i said, quote: "i'm stepping in a pair of my undies on the kitchen floor while i make eggs." ...if that puts things into perspective)

but dare i say i'm feeling something close to zen these days whilst making said home?

a few things i credit:

a) aprons!
b) method products - thanks for the hook-up rach! seriously a game changer; non-tox cleaning is where it's at. (i'd like to specifically pimp the grapefruit all surface cleaner. hearts.)
c) throwing out the stuff we don't need and making room for the stuff we do.
d) finding recipes (cc approved or it ain't worth the trubs) and making lists before i go grocery shopping. also eating a snack before leaving and going at night when people are scarce.
e) doing a little bit all the time.
f) my record player set to "play"
g) reading every post of this blog.
h) realizing how ohhhhm i feel when there's food to eat and room to walk.

add a job and a baby (yes, yes i know not yet, not yet) and i'm sure things'll get harder, but i think something's shifted for good and that's good.

Thursday, October 02, 2008

twitters from days past

was just checking out some old twitter posts from my ad days, which i've posted for you below. a) i was so happy! b) um why didn't anyone pull me aside about the binge eating?

i just said the words 'stop the presses' and it was actually appropriate.

i'll be over here, eating an entire box of marzipan.


i need to hire a maid for my desk. this is getting awkward.

me = punching bag.

stressful week = those 6 cupcakes look delish.

starbucks man told me not to work too hard and it made me cry.

life will be easier if this call goes well.

am i home yet?

i'd like a big plate of cheese now, please.

Wednesday, October 01, 2008


did you know that target, along with oodles and oodles of scrumptious tunics and ballet flats, sells individual glass bottles of coca-cola class and it's made with cane sugar instead of high fructose corn syrup -- and it's labeled "mexican coke"?

i read somewhere that around passover you can get sugar cane cokes (jewish friends, please explain? a kosher thing?) but it's october and they were all nestled in a weird corner, next to the goya stuff and some tortillas. i did a little skip in place and a silent cheer and quickly grabbed two before my dentist's voice got too loud inside my head.

perhaps you find my excitement uncalled for. but have you ever tasted the sweet deliciousness that is a mostly-not-artificial coke? cold and from a bottle?

if you have not, may i suggest you have not lived?

carry on.