Archive for May 2006

Butterbeer!

May 31, 2006

Dumbledore says, “I would assume that you were going to offer me refreshment, but the evidence so far suggests that that would be optimistic to the point of foolishness.”  

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Who out there is suffering from Harry Potter withdrawal?  Anyone? Anyone? Bueller? 

Well, I know I’m not alone.  Do you know what’s the quickest fix for the ol’ “When in Fawkes’ name is the seventh book coming out already?”  blues? That’s right!  A delicious glass of butterbeer!  I have created a recipe that combines the mystery and excitement of Hogwarts with the comfort and cameraderie of the Three Broomsticks — yet contains neither butter nor beer.  Here it is:

One part vanilla vodka

One part ginger ale

Pour over ice in a martini shaker

Hold tightly and shake gently over the sink until the fizziness causes the shaker lid to pop

Strain into frosty martini glasses

Garnish with a thin twist of lemon.

If you don’t have a shaker or martini glasses, you can serve on the rocks, in barrel-shaped beer mugs, of course. 

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“And now Harry, let us step out into the night and pursue that flighty temptress, adventure.”  — Albus Dumbledore

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Sun and Fun

May 30, 2006

Yay! It finally feels like Southern California.  Jeff and I ushered in the gorgeous weather by spending Memorial Day weekend with his family, along with lots of friends, in Laguna Beach for their annual wine-tasting party.  The weather was perfect, and good times were had by all.  Click on my Flickr badge over on the left side of this page for a photo diary of fun!

P.S.  Eric is sending me photos from his camera, many of which I took after my battery died.  They are pure awesomeness, so be sure to check the photo album later for some new additions.

Update: Check out Eric's blog to see his photo diary of the weekend, and go visit his Flickr page for "deleted scenes." Just be warned, some of the pictures of me in both locales will give you a good laugh at my expense!  

Threadbared

May 24, 2006

I have discovered the best blog on the internet: Threadbared.com.  I am openly jealous and angry that I didn't think of this first!  The women who write this are geniuses and deserve major awards and lots of money.

Loving and Hating — May Edition

May 24, 2006

Loving: 

That I get Friday and Monday off for Memorial Day, and my friends Dan and Rachel will be in town for the weekend, and we're all going to Laguna for sun and fun! 

Hating:

I forgot to get tickets to the Fiona Apple / Damien Rice show when they went on sale, and of course they're sold out!  I've never seen Fiona Apple, but I really, really want to!  How could I have done that!?

Loving:

I did NOT forget to get tickets to the Flaming Lips at the Hollywood Bowl, and can't WAIT for that show!

Hating:

That my movie star next-door neighbor Tim Olyphant moved away, and the whole time he lived next door I wanted to strike up a conversation about his work, which is great, but I had only seen him on Sex and the City and Scream 2 and felt dumb being like, "Oh, I saw you on an old rerun of Sex and the City from 1998, you were great," when meanwhile he had done tons of other stuff I hadn't seen, and I couldn't watch Deadwood b/c we didn't get HBO.  Now he's on the radio every day calling in and doing the sports report, and I wish I could say, "Hey, I listen to you on 103.1 on my way to work. You're hilarious!" But I can't, because he has moved away.

Loving:

That (fingers crossed and knocking on wood) Spring seems to have finally arrived, and the chilly, gray weather is giving way to sunshine.  About time!

Why Did I Do That?

May 23, 2006

Why did I buy only one set of curtains from Ikea? I have two windows. Now I have one window with adorable red curtains and one with ugly white blinds. I think when I bought the curtains and they came in a pack of two, I was thinking, "Oh, two curtains. One for each window!" Wrong.

I recently went back to Ikea and decided I had better get a second set for the other window. But I couldn't, because they didn't have them! They've discontinued them! NOW what am I supposed to do!?

As Annie would say, "Well, Shoot a Monkey."

Here is my cute window:

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And Here is the ugly one:

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Notice how the ugly one is so ugly that day becomes night!  Next time I'll be sure to get two sets of curtains.

P.S. That calendar in the first picture is a miniature pinscher calendar I got at the 99-cent store.  It's a 2005 calendar.  The fact that it will probably hang there through 2006 and possibly well into 2007 is further evidence of my olympic-level procrastination skills.  Yesss!

P.P.S. I do not live deep in a forest, despite photographic evidence to the contrary.

In Which She Threw Her Judgements Out the Window and Enjoyed the Ride

May 19, 2006

Shortly after Jeff and I started dating, we were driving down the road and spotted a guy in a Porsche.  "What do you think of those?" asked Jeff.

"What, the Porsche? Gross."

"Why? What do you mean?"

"Oh, you know, I don't know, I just always think of guys in Porsches as old dudes having midlife crises, or cheesy guys trying to compensate for something."

"Like what?"

"Um, you know, short man's complex, small penis, whatever."

"Really?  What if I drove one?  Would you be embarrassed to ride with me?"

"Um, Yes!  They're so cheesy and lame!  They're so cliched, it's ridiculous!  Whenever I see a guy in a Porsche I assume he's an arrogant asshole who's trying to cover up some insecurity!"

"Well, what about the older ones, like the 80s ones?"

"Gross, those are the worst of all!  It's a guy in a white leisure suit and wrap-around shades, with some dumb vanity plate that says 'Smokin'' or 'So cool.'"

Do you see how he led me into this trap?  How he asked me those loaded questions, so that three weeks later when I visited his parents' house for the first time and saw in the driveway not one but two, yes: two Porsches, one shiny new one and one that was smack dab out of the mid-80s, can you see how I could feel a little bit like sticking my foot in my mouth? 

Evil. Just evil. 

I was reminded of this lovely milestone in our relationship the other night when he, Eric, Mike, and I piled into the 80s Porsche to go get some dinner.  He's borrowing it while his car is getting some routine maintenance. And I have to admit.  It was fun, DESPITE that while in the front seat my life continuously flashed before my eyes the whole time, since Jeff was pealing around on the street like a cheetah out of hell, and on the return trip I sat in the back seat with Eric, a seat that was so tiny even my tiny butt didn't fit all the way back in it, and my head now rests at a permanent ninety-degree angle on my neck. But anyway, no, I have to admit: it's really, really, cute, yet also masculine, just like Jeff — heehee!  And riding in it is fun, especially when we blast 80s tunes and wear sunglasses at night. 

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So I can change my mind, and admit when I'm wrong and have wrongly judged a person, place, or car.  See?  Live and learn, my friends. Live and learn.

Oh, and P.S. Now they have three.

Blubarybrid

May 17, 2006

Yesterday I was wishing they made hybrid Subarus, because I really want a Subaru, and gas prices ain't gettin' any cheaper.  $3.49 a gallon I paid last time, people. $3.49! 

You may think it's dorky that I really, really badly want a Subaru, that it is in fact my dream car, but I've got news for you: I'm a dork.  And once you drive one, you might want one, too.  I've rented two of them on two separate occasions, and both were unbelievably zippy and fun to drive, and the second one was an Outback, which Jeff and I drove up to Big Bear for some skiing, and that one was the most amazing piece of machinery ever created.  Not only was it zippy, as expected, it was roomy without being huge, perfect for our ski/snowboard equipment, its all-wheel drive hugged the road so completely that we didn't even notice there was snow and a thick layer of ice on the road, AND IT HAD HEATED SEATS!  And yes, I just shouted that, because it needed to be heard.  I had never experienced heated seats before then, but boy, oh boy, I don't think I can ever drive in cold weather again without them.  It was just amazing to come in from the snow, sit down, and almost immediately have a warm butt! 

A couple years ago in Raleigh, North Carolina, where my sister April and brother-in-law Steve live, they had a ridiculous snowstorm, and both of them got stranded on their way home from work, cars stuck in snow up to here.  Steve was able to walk home, but April was wearing a skirt and heels, and kept slipping and sliding all cartoon-style, arms flailing about, complete with the sound effects like in Scooby Doo, where they run in place a couple seconds before taking off, like, "Blupety blupety blupe!"  OK, I kind of made that last part up, but I imagine that's close to what it looked like.  I didn't get the details, so it could be true.  Anyway, she clearly was in no position to hike it the mile or so home, so what could she do, but accept a ride from a huge black dude in a pimped out Escalade?  So she did, except that although she was quite close to her house, he said, "Well, I have to go pick up my son from school first," and proceeded in the opposite direction, at which point she began to hyperventilate. Because any time you're in a large, male stranger's car, and it's a somewhat rural area, definitely not urban, certainly not a lot of people around, and it's a snowstorm, and you can't run because you're wearing a skirt and heels and already experienced the cartoon pratfalls, as we discussed — Any time you're in that situation, and the large, male stranger starts to drive in the opposite direction of where you thought you were going — well, you start to panic.  And panic she did, in the form of hyperventilation. He was like, "Um, Are you OK?" And she was like, "Ehhhhhh…"  but as it happened, he indeed picked up his son and then drove her home, safe and sound, and because he drove a 4-wheel drive vehicle had no trouble gliding over the icy, snowy mess.

Immediately the very next week, as soon as Steve was able to dig his truck (which did not have 4-wheel drive, which, if you ask me, is so dumb for trucks to come in 2-wheel drive) out of the snow, he traded it in for a blue Subaru Impreza Outback, affectionately called the "Blubaru." This is not to be confused with my usual blingo, which takes the "bl" from the word "blog."  No, there is no such thing as a "blog Subaru," although I can only imagine how amazing that would be.  This time it refers to "Blue Subaru."  What's cute is that Steve drives the Blubaru, and April drives Rhonda, the Red Honda.  Yes, my sister is a genius.  It runs in the family, in fact.

Coincidentally, both Subarus I have rented have also been blubarus, leading me to the only logical conclusion: I am destined to own one, and it must be blue.

And last night, after wishing for a hybrid Subaru, I had a dream that one already existed, and I was about to buy it.  I was test driving my own Hyblubaru, or Blubarybrid (take your pick).  And life was good.

Is It Opposite Day?

May 16, 2006

I saw this sign in the cafe downstairs in my office building.  "Mmmm," I thought. "I would like some hot, fresh soup!" 

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Then I looked at the soup.

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Hmmmm.

Babies vs. Puppies

May 12, 2006

This is it.  The most pressing question of all time:  Which is cuter: Babies or Puppies? Personally, I tend to go back and forth, but have historically leaned toward puppies.  When I see an extra cute puppy, for example, my voice involuntarily rises approximately two octaves, and squeaking sounds emit from my throat that are so high-pitched, only said puppy can hear them.  This does not usually happen with babies to such an extent.  However, as soon as I'm confident about puppies' spot in first place, along comes an extra-cute baby to make me re-think things.  So, I've decided to let you, the Internet, help me decide.  I present here several pieces of evidence, from both sides of the argument. 

 First, I present to you Exhibit A:  Willie.  Willie is Jeff's little sister Sage's dog, and… well, I think the evidence speaks for itself:

 Willie_small.jpg

OK. Pretty cute, right?  That's one for the puppies.  But… and I have to say, this next picture is going to put babies in a clear lead.  Here it comes… May I present: Gareth!

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On cue now: "Awwwwwwww!" Gareth is my co-workers Julie & Cliff's baby — the one I bought an adorable dress for when I thought he was going to be a girl.  Julie brings him around every morning when she leaves work and Cliff arrives, and each day I try to trick her into leaving without him so I can play with him all day. "Quick! Julie, Fire Alarm! Save yourself; I'll take the baby.  You don't hear anything?  Weird.  Anyway, RUN! RUN!" or "Gareth?  Um, Nooooo, this is my baby.  I brought him today.  What's that?  Looks a lot like Gareth?  Yes, that is quite a coincidence, isn't it?  Oh, I think I may have seen your baby out in your car, or at your house.  Maybe you should go look there.  You really shouldn't leave a baby alone — you should know that, Julie.  Hurry up, now, Go!"

It has yet to work, but I am far from giving up.

So: It's one to one.  Puppies and babies are neck and neck. 

Ladies and Gentlemen: Professor Chips. 

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P. Chips is the English Bulldog puppy Jeff had for two days before the breeder called crying, wanting him back because she had fallen in love with him.  Because he is the cutest creature ever to have walked the earth.  Damn.  Looking back, I realize it was probably a good thing Jeff gave him back, for both of us.  Not only was Prof. Chips the biggest cock-blocker ever ("Jeff who?  GIIIIVVE MEEEEE PUUUPPPPYYYYYYY"), he was so soft and cute he literally gave me a headache.  So… Puppies again take the lead.  But…. wait until you get a load of this:

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Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh!!!  My ovaries are exploding!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I must begin procreating NOW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  The world needs more cute things like this!  I must gobble her up!  I must consume this baby at once, with butter and a glass of milk! 

Ah… pant, pant, leaning against wall for support, catching breath…. ahem… OK, this is Elanor, the daughter of my lovely friend Joanna.  Elanor is one baby who can give Professor Chips a damn good run for his money.  Can you even picture this baby and that puppy in the same room together?  I can't.  I think Earth would be sucked into a black hole, there would be such a concentration of cuteness in one area, and the imbalance would cause the end of the universe and all matter.  So basically we have concluded… nothing.  Babies and puppies are still tied.  They're two for two. 

WE INTERRUPT THIS BLENTRY TO BRING YOU BREAKING NEWS.  BABIES PULL AHEAD, TAKING  CLEAR LEAD. 

It looks as though for the time being, at least, babies outshine puppies.  Click on this link here and crank up the sound.  And don't say I didn't warn you.

Case closed…. for now.

Aw, Man

May 10, 2006

I just re-read that post about Bankruptcy Barry and got really embarrassed.  I can’t believe I even dreamed that!  It’s so dumb!  Man!  Then, since I feel the need to prove my retardation to any and all who may not already be convinced, I have to go and tell the internet.  Can you believe I dreamed something so dumb? And not only did I just dream it and leave it at that, I wrote it down — well, actually, recorded it on my phone — I wish you could hear it because it sounds even worse in my half-asleep voice, and I actually raised my voice up a half octave or so to do the voice of Barry.  See, there I go again, wanting to show the internet my most embarrassing characteristics.  Good thing I’m not looking for a boyfriend.

Bankruptcy Barry Strikes Again!

May 10, 2006

Last night, between being awake and fully asleep, I had a kind of little mini dream.  I was just cognizant enough to realize it was ridiculous enough to be written down and recorded in the annals of my "funny sleepy thoughts" log, a list I keep of just such instances.  Last night, I have to say, was a good one. 

I saw an old-timey bank scene, not unlike the bank in It's a Wonderful Life. I guess the banker was bankrupt, because in came a pudgy little villain type, named "Bankruptcy Barry."  Bankruptcy Barry walked right up to the banker, shook his finger at him, and said, "This is barry, barry bad!" 

Whoa, dude.  Whoa.

It’s a Good Thing “Dorky-Chic” Is Coming Back In

May 5, 2006

Just now I kind of jogged / trotted / power-walked to the bathroom, because: a. I had to pee pretty badly,and b. I am all jacked up on a big thing of tea I just drank.  I drink caffeine only often enough so that when I do, in any form, I get super jumpy and jittery, with energy to spare — so anyway, as I was trotting to the bathroom I thought about power walking, and how dorky it looks.

When I was younger, sometimes I would go on walks around the neighborhood with my mom, and she would always do that really ridiculous power-walking thing where you take really long steps, pump your arms like you're a jogger on speed, and swing your butt wildly back and forth.  It's a good workout, because it's a lot of high-powered dorkiness, all concentrated into one fluid motion.  I used to get all embarassed and loudly whisper, "Mom! Stop it!  That is soooo embarrassing!"

Then the summer after 8th grade I decided to do the Junior Olympics for track & field.  This is the part where you're all impressed, like, "Oooh, Jr. Olympics? Marcy, I had no idea you were such an athlete!"  And now here's the part where I come clean and admit that although I'd like you to go on thinking I was a star athlete in middle school, no, junior olympics was nothing to write home about, pretty much anyone could do it.  I did it because some of my friends did, and it was a good way to go socialize with them during the day rather than being made to do chores around the house. 

So anyway, we were at a meet one Saturday afternoon, and my events — the 800m and the high jump — were already done, and no, I hadn't won anything, especially not in high jump, I don't know why they always made me do that event, I was terrible at it.  I've never been very springy, and half the time I didn't jump at all because I was scared of hitting the bar — ouch!  I would just run at it, then scutter to a stop, then go back and try again, over and over until I either closed my eyes and threw my body directly into the bar or just got disqualified for too many false starts. 

But anyway, I had already finished not winning those two events when my coach came over to my friend Cherie and me and told us he had entered us in the race walk, because nobody else was registered in our division, meaning we would automatically win first and second place.  Was winning Race Walk a good thing or a bad thing?  Winning is usually a good thing, but I think the fact that it was race walk more than cancelled out anything "cool" about winning, not to mention that to win we didn't even have to beat anyone.  Well, it didn't matter, because our coach had already registered us, so we had to do it; we race-walked a whole mile, and it HURT!  Not only does that exercise look ridiculous, it uses muscles in the front of your shins that you never ever use for any other activity.  The rule with race walk is that you must have at least one foot on the ground at all times.  I've never wanted to run so badly in my life!  But we finished the race, giggling embarrassedly the whole time, and counted our steps up to the finish line so we would tie for first place: "One, two, three, STEP."  And we both got blue ribbons, which looked impressive until you turned them over and saw that the event was "Who can most quickly complete the ridiculous mom-walk."

I.Am.Starving.

May 4, 2006

Why do I keep buying those microwave Lean Cuisine meals?  They taste delicious, but they do not make me any less hungry than I was prior to eating them.  I'm serious — I would expect them not necessarily to fill me up, because it's not a lot of food, volume wise.  But I sat here eating one today and I literally felt NO less hungry after I finished eating.  I was still every single bit as hungry as before.  Now I'm in a tough situation, because Jeff is taking me out to dinner tonight at Lola's, which we used to go to all the time but haven't in a while, and I plan to eat a lot of food, including their amazing mac & cheese, and also to drink my favorite alcoholic beverage of all time, their canteloupe martini.  However, I'm starving to death now!  Do I eat something now and risk not being hungry enough later?  Or do I sit here wasting away until dinnertime, which by the time we're eating will be 8:30 at the earliest?  At least I'll be a cheap date!  I'll probably be drunk after one martini!

Cheers to that!

By the way, I just re-read this post and realized that a huge number of my blentries are about food.  I'm going to have to create a food category!

American Justice, and whatnot

May 4, 2006

I was going to write a post wondering how long Zacarias Moussaoui would last in prison without getting killed — five minutes? one minute?  But then I found out he'll be in solitary.  Good.  He'll have the rest of his life to think about what he's done.  It's like getting sent to your room rather than getting spanked — but on a much larger scale.  The death penalty would have been too easy for him.  Let him spend forty years by himself, staring at the walls, gradually realizing what a big, huge, huge, huge mistake he has made.

Oh, and while I'm on this topic:  The defense in his case was talking about the violence in his home as a child.  Why could they even use that?  It annoys me so much when criminals try to blame their behavior on their childhood.  A bad childhood does not justify killing people.  At some point adults have to take responsibility for their actions and stop blaming their parents. 

I Am Smarter Than Myself

May 3, 2006

In the kitchen at work, there's a big whiteboard on one wall.  Sometimes when I'm microwaving something in there, I draw on the whiteboard to pass the time.  For example, I've drawn two cups of coffee over the last few weeks, which no one has erased yet: one in an old-fashioned tea-cup or restaurant-style coffee cup, the other in a mug with the company logo on it.

On Friday I played tic-tac-toe with myself, and do you know, I beat myself??  I was sure it would be the cat's game, but I ended up winning.  And losing.  I up and outsmarted myself!  Well.  Wonders never cease.