29 December 2009

the year of creative weeks

everyone rolls their eyes when you talk about resolutions for the new year. why is that? this is possibly my favorite holiday of the year. everything is still sparkly outside. i don't drink often and feel no need to get shitfaced. people choose to spend time with those that they like and celebrate their lives together. the clock strikes and you tend to have a moment where you feel like you get a do-over from the passage of time. still, i'm not sure why setting a few goals for yourself can induce the instant cynicism usually reserved for a bridesmaid dress.

in an effort to set myself up for something realistic once again, i've decided to think hard and give myself some easy resolutions. hey, this isn't lent. i don't have to suffer! i can handle forty days or whatever of mild punishment when springtime hits. the new year is supposed to be more motivating than that.

this year's resolutions will be the once-a-week variety. if i can break it down into little chunks like that, i should be able to make a commitment. i'm bad with commitments, after all, and i hate being disappointed in myself more than absolutely necessary on my whiny days. hell, i can always find a reason to berate myself. do i really need any help with that? therefore, once a week i will:

  • write. prolly some blogging, maybe some in a journal. hopefully i can get more postcard mail out into the world. if i get totally into it, i might work on some other "i should do that" projects in the future.
  • draw and doodle. didn't i just say how i should sketch more? i don't even care if no one ever sees it. i realized that i like my drawings.
  • study something. for now, i have school to keep me busy with this, and it's a good way to remind me to do homework. after school, there's always wikipedia. becoming temporarily fascinated with arbitrary shit is just a click away.
  • daydream aimlessly. this shouldn't be hard. have you met me? this could be my answer to meditation and relaxation.
  • read a book. this isn't the same as studying. not everyone has a reader's club to encourage them to explore different stuff. if you think about how little people actually read for fun, it's kind of shocking.
if i can reach into my creative side for a just a few hours each week, i will.... jeez, i don't know what. it just seemed like a clear-sighted goal to have. like trying to get into the habit of flossing more. you know it's the cool thing to do, but sometimes you get tired and forget. what else do you expect from a girl who wanted to breathe more last year?!? all i want is to look at the world and catch a spark. if it's an angry or perturbed spark, all the better. bitching is my cardio and i need the exercise. that way i don't have to resolve to go to the gym.

random sites derek likes:
emails from crazy people
oddly specific
savage chickens

28 December 2009

random side notes - chapter twenty three

as far as i can remember, i've addressed my resolutions from the last new year. i do think about my posture, i've learned how to be quiet and breathe sometimes, and i'm starting a new (very small so far) business. surely there's something i'm leaving out, but this seems like a fair beginning. i'm going to try and set realistic goals for myself again in the coming year.

the handbrake is fine. it just needed to warm up for an extended period of time until the cable would release. there was some slipping around in my little vw, but my lovely blue hair (the name for my car) goes pretty well in the snow. she's like a sled that rides about three inches off the ground, light enough to slide and light enough to stop. everyone else was thankfully just as paranoid about the roads.

i still need a haircut.

my business cards came in this week! derek helped to design them and i found that i liked doing something business-oriented together again. we make a pretty good team. the cards are cute and nerdy at the same time, just like us.

tim and mary came over for brunch yesterday. not only did i successfully chop things without injury, but i cooked edible food for everyone. it's great to be able to do something for your friends who've driven across the country to see people so you can show them how much you like them. then we hung around being fabulous all over town. traci finally got her car out of the garage with a hair dryer so that we could meet up with her and give mary some surprise yarn from the big bag o' homeless goods.

i've been thinking about getting back into my sketching. ryan saw some of my old pieces when she came over and had productive feedback. visual arts are usually intimidating to me because i feel like i have no idea what i'm doing. it's like any arts thing that makes me confused. fuck it. who cares if it's any good? i'm so tired of feeling discouraged from things that i maybe do or maybe don't have any clue about what's the right way to do things. if i waited to figure things out and followed all the rules i would never get anything done. my cautious side has never been that kind to me. it's a paralyzing force in my life that feeds on my fears. my impulsive side makes me do scary things. it gets me into lots of trouble, but also makes me think in a "how hard could it be? kind of way. how do i temper the two? i want to jump off cliffs and scream like a crazy person without losing my critical editorial eye by saying yes to everything. maybe i should buy a bungee cord.

you know what else makes me confused? terms like postmodern or deconstructionist. i admit it - i have no earthly idea what the hell people are talking about when they say this stuff. am i just supposed to nod my head and wiggle an eyebrow to prove how hip i am on these subjects? can anybody out there explain this shit to me?!?! julie and barbara say that i talk in a conceptual manner, but these fancy highbrow concepts just escape me.

i'm also not a fan of shakespeare. or jazz... except maybe the charlie brown variety. i don't have a deep and abiding love for tom waits and kate bush. i mean, they're okay sometimes, but at other times i just don't get it. i'm willing to admit to being a goofball. let's face it - my favorite band was totally a major top 40 success. i like to find high art in pop culture and the everyday profanity in art. being shallow does that to me.

in honor of liz: i ate brown cow cream top coffee yogurt and leftover homemade blueberry muffins from yesterday's brunch for breakfast this morning. hehehe

d'oh! just remembered that i have an extra special birthday present for alice that i forgot to mail to her! whoops. you'd think that if i'm going to be an organizer then i could get my own life in order. the cobbler's children must have shoes! and so i'm cleaning out my file cabinet today as well, which should be sweet revenge for derek after he did his last week. maybe i'll have another clearance of crafty bits. there should be enough in there to make an excellent collage.

the gadget report:
we heart the sodastream fizzy thing. my recycling closet is like, totally empty compared to before. derek is still mountain dew free and i'm actually drinking water.

26 December 2009

when i said brake, i didn't mean all the time

so yes, it did snow here on thursday. by the time i was on the way home from morning coffee with friends, it went from just cold and raining to windy and sleet with itty bitty hail pellets. sometime shortly after that it started snowing and didn't stop until the next morning. in the great tradition of silver linings, i am a bit thankful. at last! i have a reason that we didn't do anything for the holiday!

after poking around the house for a long time in pajamas yesterday, i took a shower and got ready to go out in search of a burrito. if nothing else, quiktrip would have something to satisfy me in the form of a cheese taquito. i got all bundled up and went downstairs. i started the car and let it get warm. i tried to leave my parking space and heard a big creak. so it turns out that my handbrake was frozen in place just enough where i could back up with a loud noise and then put the car right back into its space. i checked all the tires and underneath to make sure there was nothing else wrong, so i'm figuring that i just need to wait it out.

i'll try again today. maybe if i let the car run for a while longer, the cable to the brake will release me from my parking space. unfortunately, my 'hood is one of the last places in town they'll even touch this weekend. since no one has to go into the office right now, there's no point to salting the streets around here. and since mary's parents live right past the county line, it's unlikely they'll get much done out there, either. lucky me - mary and i are in the two least likely places to get any help in having the roads cleared. fuck it, we're tough. i can get anywhere in my little car provided that i'm willing to go about ten miles an hour. i'm sure it'll be fine once i emerge onto the regular arterial streets; might even make it up to twenty. i'm a total old lady on the ice and don't understand why the hell everyone else is in such a hurry. if my car is light enough to slide, it's light enough to stop. the same can't be said for those fuckers in their big trucks who haven't bothered to weigh down the truck beds. don't they know there's still ice under that snow?!? let's just hope everyone else takes it easy. i've heard a billion sirens going to the hospital down the street in the past few days, and i don't think they were using them to celebrate holiday glee.

cross your fingers that my handbrake will unfreeze. i need a burrito, or at least something else with an -ito ending. they're calling to me! it has the "eat" sound right in the name! i must eat-o it! uhhh, wow. maybe i've been in my pajamas too long now.

fat girl party update:
the party was a bust, for now. we have to reschedule it for january. me, derek, and ryan ate chili and watched multiple episodes of the boondocks instead. still a good time. at least i got all my clothes folded again.

23 December 2009

fat- uhhhh, i mean squeezy girls rock

yes, i know i'm not fat. in fact, one could look at the statistics and look at me and say "voila! at last we've found her! that's the average american woman!" it just so happens that my dimensions are pretty much the ones they always print in those articles trying to bash the skinny people. leave the skinny people alone, i say. if they're twigs, they either can't help it or they wanna give up the joys of key lime pie and just go jogging all damn day. stop fucking with them. they're little people (not THAT kind, liz) and that's the way it is. i've seen megan's immediate family and no matter how much food they inhale it's just not gonna have the fat chicks in it. so what? without her, i wouldn't be able to go into those stores with all the teeny tiny clothes and play dress-up with my own personal mannequin. take that, betsey johnson... oh, and take a look in the mirror while you're at it.

on the other hand, my kind is the squeezy type. we get called voluptuous or rubenesque. the word flashy is actually kinda sexy to me, perhaps because it alludes to being nekkid and prancing around while the wobbly bits shimmy. please don't call me queen-sized. it makes me feel like a pair of pantyhose. oh, and barrel-chested isn't so good either, due to the polka reference. (is there an anti-hyphenated theme going here?) personally, i think referring to myself as a fat girl is hilarious. it's a role i've embraced as preposterous and amiable. to think that someone who has, let's say, an extra cheese reserve in the belly is in the same category as a medical mystery makes me laugh. my blegs are leaking down towards the back of my knees, but i don't care anymore, and just because my frutt (or my sassy frass, if you will) and my butt are the same size doesn't make me a freak.

of course there is a dark side to being heavy and it does carry health risks. of course there is a dark side to driving a car and it does carry health risks. of course there is a dark side to eating sushi and it does carry health risks. of course there is a dark side to having having a life and it does carry health risks. let's talk about the funny part again, shall we?

in the grand tradition of being a teenager, i hated the way i looked back then. my fashion sense was totally fabulous - for the eighties, mind you - but everything else was wrong wrong wrong! a logical person might blame this on the media and all those trashy celebutard-filled magazines. (once again, that's hypenated. see?!?) any rational teenager would blame it on... well, whatever they could find that was handy. what's the catch? for quite a while, due to extreme measures of intervention on my part, i was a skinny girl! if only i had foamy the squirrel with me back then to tell me to just fucking get over it, i would've enjoyed life a lot more.

one day along the path to my "fat girls are awesome too" enlightenment, i decided to try on clothes that fit me. what? that's crazy! who would do that? i mean, after years of being told that i am the average for a woman, and yet i'm somehow not a medium size but more like an XXL in the boobs, it was an amazing difference. clothes that fit don't make you feel like a sausage; they look good on you. and let's face it, jeans don't lie. your wardrobe will be honest with you and tell you it's time to hit the store for an up or down size.

except for those damn cosby sweaters. they're going to lie to you no matter what just to save themselves. sweaters are difficult to trust on any given day.

if you have real friends who aren't afraid to make you mad, and they're willing to put up with your whining when you go shopping together, they'll express in words or gestures what the clothing can't. it might just be with an upturned nose or a sideways glance with a snort. you have to watch them closely to get their initial reaction when you walk out in new duds. just because you think it's comfortable doesn't mean you don't look like a watermelon in it. (thank you holly for saving me from that mistake.) or else ask a total stranger and remind them that they have nothing to lose by vocalizing their disdain for that dress. you'd be surprised how much detail you can get when you don't even know the person.

and don't be shy about demanding "hey, let's go to the fat girl's store!" they put it there for a reason, you know. which is to say, you can find clothes that fit you. or so what if you have to go to gap kids to get your jeans? they're cheaper there anyway. i'm not going to blame the media monster for being a fat girl. maybe i should blame the people who make clothes, but i don't really have time for any of that. i'm going to get myself a damn shirt. one that doesn't require duct tape to hold it shut in the front just because it's supposedly the correct size. as mary always says, no sees the tags but me.

all this is to say that someone will see the tags besides me. in celebration of my fat girl glee, i'm having some chickadees over to swap clothes. fat girl's wardrobe party! EEE! (maybe i should have invited drag queens, a ala king of the hill, so i could get some sequins in the mix.) although susan likes the term squeezy better, and i can totally hang with that one. squeezy is cuuuute. so anyway, in order to save some money and spruce up the old closet, i'm extending my nuwsed item policy to people i know and hoping i'll have something they can use. any reason to have people over and nosh on a snack while gossiping is good enough for me. in exchange i'll be looking for some nuwsed things to keep me out of the thrift stores for a few days. sheesh, i've gotten rid of so much over the past year that i just have to look and see what i've still got. tank tops, anyone?

random facts about me:
i like bottle caps.
grey is my favorite color.
my eyes are darker than anyone else i know.

22 December 2009

last train to clarkies-ville

off to the post office, off to the library, off to the market. the week has become a carousel of things that i should be ashamed to find entertaining. being a middle-aged curmudgeon is truly more fun than i ever expected it to be. (let's not start that middle-aged argument again, eh? i'm not at the beginning and not at the end - therefore, technically it is the middle. so there!) my cards should come in this week about the time that tim and mary arrive in town, so i can be the lame dufus that oohs and ahhhs over business propaganda with my friends.

i also got the pleasure of attending the very last show at clark theatre over the weekend. the teens and little kids put on a great improv show, and i felt super cool that they were excited to see me there. on sunday they had a going away party for the building. there weren't as many tears as you would think; just some high-gravity hugging (slumped shoulders and sniffles) and reddish eyes at times. the building is terrific, but since the program is just being moved and not killed, they're taking it on the chin quite well.

besides, if we have to have a roommate at "the palace" due to budget cutbacks, i couldn't think of a better arrangement. no more driving between theatres for the staff, a more active building overall, and a united front for the kids and the adults. we're hoping to even integrate more types of arts into the program. and hey, they didn't even have to take a season off to get ready like we did, so the momentum and revenue will still keep going. my hugs go out to them for losing their own dedicated space, but i'm anticipating good things for all of us in the future. with any luck, the new stupid mayor can't fuck with us!

now comes the task of sorting all the incoming stuff from clark and getting the new space organized. i'm only thankful that we weren't allowed to squat in there for another season and make a big mess before they moved. (oh, and finally getting all that space in the gym doesn't hurt.) truth be told, adults can be just as messy as teens, and i am personally quite lazy. getting a fresh start all at once is a blessing. this is a project where i can put some of my new skills to use! i suppose i see it as less of a shutting down, and more of a coming together... with extra bathrooms, of course. no matter what else happens, you gotta go to the bathroom sooner or later. see? this is how we focus on the exciting part of the changes . i can't wait to see how the place evolves.

in other theatre news, i'm having a blast directing the ayn rand peeps. that crazy bitch is so damn serious that it's funny. in fact, we've made it really funny. by stylizing the characters, the show is turning out to be something more than just a super dry courtroom drama. think radio play and you'll get where we're going with it. what could have been such a downer by a depressing, self-proclaimed logical genius is morphing into a film noir soap opera that's much more interesting and entertaining than ayn rand was. we're cool like that.

what i'm pondering this week:
getting a haircut
new year's resolutions
digital archiving

18 December 2009

words i like today - chapter two

this month's installment is brought to you by the folks i know who like to make up words because we get excited or agitated about random things:

  • squee! - it's a happy mary word... and makes a great noise!
  • monumentous - the mixing of monumental and momentous. from hoarders, because i love that show. did i already say that one?
  • vengeant - one can be vengeful, or have vengeance. i had no idea this wasn't actually a word! it is now, damnit.
  • gruntled - derek and i use this when neither satisfied nor dissatisfied, yet feeling more than a ho-hum status.
  • disgustation - a state of being to describe when you've totally fucking had it. disdain and frustration and anger combine to reach disgustation.
  • blah-bitty-blah - my general fill in word for stuff. it comes in really handy when i have absolutely no idea what i'm talking about or lose track of my own sentences.
  • domexcavate - the purging of shit in your house that you probably didn't even know was there. this could also be called domestivation.
  • frizzie - a juice and fizzy water drink, in honor of my new-fangled gadget that i bought for the house.
  • craptastic - thank you once more, mary. this word could be bad in an extreme case, but almost always alludes to something that is so bad, awful, or tacky that it's good. in fact, it's terrific! no, it cannot be used to describe a cosby sweater. yes, it can be used to describe your hideous sheets.
  • fercockety - again, i thought this was an actual word. again, i may have already listed this one. it's like being all kerfuffled and wonky.
  • quoi - another state of being. it's a real word, but in this instance used to tell someone that you're completely taken aback and befuddled. you can also use it as a veto measure on someone's fashion sense or cooking skills... i say it to myself in this way sometimes.
  • epiphanetic - i say this when i'm feeling inspired, usually right after i leave the bathroom. too much info for ya?

i doubt i've made up any new curse words (unless you count sofia coppola) that i can remember off the top of my head. that's more of a spontaneous thing that happens when i'm in pain from stubbing my toe or getting a paper cut. if anything cool comes out during the next impromptu "fuck!" variation, i'll let you know. i'm all about the slanguage.

you should totally tell me all about your favorite made up words and phrases. it's just the kind of thing we could collect into an informative pamphlet for megan's birthday. and yes, i know about urban dictionary and other sites like that. and yes, i do read nerdy wordy books and giggle out loud. so does megan. she's my linguist role model. i just hope she writes a book with lots of semicolons in it someday, just for me.

it might be risky:
should ayn rand be film noir radio play comedy?

17 December 2009

children of the corn syrup

it is possible:
1. that i'm now an old fogey
2. i think too hard while grocery shopping
3. food inc. and king corn are some scary-ass documentaries
4. it's all derek's fault

well, derek has given up soda and i bought him a new kitchen gadget to make super fizzy water at home to mix with juice. (izze is just too expensive!) we've gone to buying local meat at the meat market and concentrating on eating more and more of what one could call real food.

it's really not that dramatic of an adjustment. we've been going to harvard meats for a while off and on. eating more veggies and cooking at home more often kind of started when i began my nesting phase a while back. the no mountain dew thing for him is new, but i am trying to be supportive by only getting my diet dr. peppers when i go out. it's an addiction, i know, but i'm a pepper. wouldn't you like to be a pepper, too? hell yes!!! i HAVE to be a fucking pepper! "they" made me into a pepper when i was a kid, and i'm not stopping now. must! be! PEPPER!!!

see how that works? high fructose corn syrup must have been the impending doom epidemic of the twentieth century. dr. tony was chatting with me a few weeks ago (also in reference to food inc. - don't know if he's seen king corn) and made a passing comment that diabetes is the new black plague. that stuck with me as i was watching the "eat actual food" docs of the last month and hearing michael pollan's name an unusual number of times. to hear it told by these people, HFCS is the devil... not to mention all of the other corn-derivative products used in food production processes and as feed for slaughter animals. now corn is not be the root of all evil, and it probably didn't even make me into a pepper, but you know what? there sure is a lot of fucking corn out there. it's in a lot of stuff.

this probably doesn't mean i'll give up the occasional bag of blueberry muffin tops cereal, because who can give up crazy shit like that? (yes, i'm not kidding - it really does exist!) i probably won't even give up any other icky HFCS convenience junk food that i want on occasion. being the pepper that i am, i'll always want a burrito or some pudding to tide me over in times of craving. however, we do try to eat actual food around here. if that means reading labels and thinking about packaging and figuring out how to be informed to the hilt about things i really don't want to know, so be it. nobody said being a pepper was easy.

but i don't think the doctor would recruit me into his vast army of tasty liquid minions without expecting me to cram in the spinach, too. he is, after all, a doctor. he wouldn't want us to exist on his crack and heroin filled soda alone. that's why he kept in a few natural flavorings, don't you know. now he should prolly think about capitalizing on this whole "organic panic" craze by going back to cane sugar as a sales ploy. just think of all the peppers he would gain! our growing numbers could then spread the word that olive oil is not the enemy. we would reinstate good carbs to their rightful place in the world. maybe, just maybe, we could make the federal school lunch program get the funding to include things that didn't involve some unidentified food byproduct being boiled to greyish, soupy goop amongst a sea of abbreviated additives.

they say that if you can neither spell nor say the ingredients on your food, you most likely shouldn't be eating it. i can go with that theory. then again, i'm a pretty good speller, but you can bet the doctor would agree with this advice. and besides, our nations' children can't even tell where to put punctuation, so it's a decent enough rule to stick with until we can start funding education again... maybe the peppers of us out there can work on that next.

postal goodies:
urban craft uprising package from bonnie! EEE!

07 December 2009

i don't really give a shit about sociological theory today

too bad that sociology what it is i'm supposed to know all about after i've finished my degree. to a large extent, most of the stuff is like, "duh" when i read it. maybe i just know more about sociology than i think i do, or maybe it's just easy because it makes sense to me.

plato does not make sense to me.

dead white guys like that just piss me off.

honestly, when something makes no sense to me i have to try extra hard just to even grasp any part of it, much less be able to study about it with any proficiency. does it say something about me that machiavelli and rousseau were totally easy to comprehend? it was like a lightbulb moment reading about people like mills or weber. others make me feel like i'm in the dark... cooking a large fancy meal. and we all know about my vast culinary skills. hardy har har, eh? how people get through college learning shit about shit is kind of a mystery to me. i'm just in it for the piece of paper, as they say.

frankly, the most profound thing i'm getting out of this experience is the ability to negotiate my way into being an exception to the rule whenever i possibly can. if my fast-talking skills weren't in tune before now, they're right up there with a politician at this point. the other thing i'm getting is an impending disdain for the written word. it seems comical to me that whenever i'm not in school i love to read, yet when faced with textbooks i begin to loathe all reading. people tell me just to skim, but i'm not sure i'm getting much from that. skim reading is kinda like skim milk. it'll work in a pinch, but i'm not really into dieting. i would rather taste what i've got.

my solution? i'll skim the textbooks and read the normal stuff. i'm known for my spectacular class attendance and devil's advocate participation, much to the chagrin of my instructors, so i absorb a lot through osmosis in the classroom. sparkling bullshit goes a long way towards getting the whole thing over with in the end, believe it or not. yes, my attitude regarding higher education currently is sardonic and gorgeous.

it's difficult sometimes to understand why people think i'd make a good teacher. but maybe it is exactly that - my mocking of the system makes me the perfect candidate for doling out some reality and pragmatism to the youth of society. somebody has to be a leader who isn't afraid to use a red pen. holy shit, i'm not really the wholesome role model type, am i? picture me wincing right now. just as i know you are, too. i'm terrible with rules. structure is great, and i need guidelines, but rules are... well, i'll get back to you on that one when i think of a better word than icky. all i know is, progress doesn't happen by simply following the rules.

current podcasts:
wait wait don't tell me
stuff you missed in history class
this i believe
today in the past
planet money

01 December 2009

don't eat (too much) pie for breakfast

ugh. i shoulda gotten out a plate instead of just a spoon. and yet, every time i open the fridge i want another bite. mary and bev's key lime pie must have crack in it.

did i mention that i'm selling off my almost the entirety of my multimedia collection? that goes for books, cd's, dvd's, and whatever video games i can pry away from derek. not to be happy about the state of the economy, but it looks like a ton of people are opting for used goods over retail right now. this is excellent for me, as i still have a ton of things to sell off after going digital. what used to be several cases and shelves and other random fixtures in my house brimming with music and video and print has now dwindled down to two bookshelves and a media case. in the spirit of my newly organized self, i can happily say that the extra space (and all that extra moolah!) is really impressing me. now i have room for more shoes, right?

stuart copeland has parked himself on top of my arm once again. how does he expect me to type like this?

thankfully, my birthday falls during dead week at school. while i innocently pretend to prepare for finals, waiting until the usual weekend cram, i can concentrate on things more fun. things like getting all this cat hair off my sweater. or putting temporary tattoos on myself. perhaps relaxing and just reading anything except for a textbook. oh, wait... i'm "getting ready for finals" now, aren't i?

what we're doing right now:
looking for titanium sporks on the web

30 November 2009

happy burfday to meeeeee

so, i am total rock star!

last night we had my birthday party over at india palace. in addition to having mango ice cream and a scrotum cake for dessert (just go google gulab jamun. yes liz, i also have a thing about calling them nutsacs, balls, or testicles!) after consuming vast amounts of F-U-D, we had a sort of crafty evening. see, i never know what i want for my birthday anymore, but i do know that i love to have theme parties.

last year's party was my presidential theme. i was finally old enough to become president, so we had everyone dress in red, white, and blue while i named them all to my cabinet. i made my friends tell me all about their volunteer work. i made them donate to causes in their community or give to people in some small and direct way. i got letters about planned parenthood, animal shelters, political parties, and the like. friends gave away books to the library and took clothing to homeless shelters. people donated money to cool nonprofits that i like. it was pretty neat... and the sparkly cupcakes rhiannon made for me didn't hurt.

this year i decided the theme should be going postal. bonnie, don't hurt me! hehehe. it would seem that my postcard collection has grown into an over-bloated whale of paper. how guilty i felt that they all just sat there with nowhere to go! feeling shamed from postal neglect, i tried to think of ways to reach out and say hi to people. getting happy mail helps to shield people from all those bills.voila! a lightbulb hit me that i hadn't had a postal party since that time back in seattle with my peeps there, so i gathered all the posties and stickers and sharpies under my guard and toted them off to the indian joint. i got a group of about twenty friends together for dinner and mail. people were a bit shy and confused at first when i spread out all the doodads. then we got going and everyone got more excited about my plan.

"i do demand on my queen for a day celebration that you bring your address books! i've got gobs of all the other supplies for us to send out cool correspondence to people. no xmas stuff allowed. remember stamps? pens? real live addresses? well, what i want for my birthday this year is to grace people's mailboxes with fun mail, just because we can."

once i explained the email i had sent out, they got to it with gusto! i forced them to grab the epistolary schtuffies and told them to just say hi to people. i let them rip through my supplies like little kids. they squealed with joy at the lovely greetings they were sending out and watched the pile grow as the evening went along. everyone seemed almost grateful that they could bring some tiny surprise to post. see there? just because i'm bossy doesn't mean it can't be a good thing.

let me tell you this: we started off with a roll of postcard stamps. that's 100 stamps. i came home with about 30 stamps, and even had to bust into the other stash for some international mail. i literally had a whomping STACK of postcards to go out today! some people even took a few finished products home to scan in or add zip codes or whatever else before sending even more happy mail out into the world. wowee, if this is what it's like not asking for birthday presents, count me in.

speaking of which, i did get some super duper cool gifties, too! more stickers, an art journal, a tim burton bio, a weaving loom, a peacock feather hairpiece, new jewelry, and even a fresh homemade key lime pie! that's what i get for not being greedy. great loot comes to those who force real live human social interaction upon their friends. hey, i'm not ALL touchy-feely about the gifts for other people thing. i can stand to get some royal treatment here and there. what narcissistic crazy person could resist some fawning, right? scott even took me and julie out for sushi today. nummy num num. now that's what i call giving.

personal songs for many occasions:
theme song - georgy girl
really pissed off - across the universe
thinking hard and fast - downtown
sentimentally gloopy - smile
gleeful - spiderman theme song
frustrated with myself - never enough
crazy panic mode - a daisy chain 4 satan
pensive - moonlight sonata
feeling goofy - spice up your life
wistfully hopeful - where the streets have no name
longing - i know it's gonna happen someday
excited about stuff - message in a bottle

20 October 2009

holy shit! moment of the week


so derek wanted to borrow my car to "run some errands" today. i had rearranged my schedule at the last minute for something and didn't get to attend class today, almost spoiling his plans. he asked me to come with him so he could drop me off at my destination later. well, of course i'm completely gullible when it comes to surprises and didn't even catch on when we pulled into the airport parking lot.

"what are doing here?"
oh, nick asked me to pick up a package for him this afternoon."
"oh, okay. whatever."

duh. i'm the goofball who was rearranging my scarf into different configurations and practicing my posture... when mary pops into view out of nowhere! i screamed and let out an "EEE!" at the baggage claim. she's here a whole week! she's sitting here in my living room at this very moment! we can have a super fun girl party slumber party at holly's house this weekend when veronica rolls into town. wowee, am i a lucky ducky girl or what?!? tankoo berry mucho, derek. sometimes it's great to be the last to know.

why we suck:
derek and mary are watching some marketplace thing on the tivo about turkey contracts or some stupid shit like that. they are rapt with attention. i think i have to pee.

19 October 2009

random side notes - chapter twenty two

okay, so you know when there's a fight to the death on the original star trek series and they play that "certain doom" kind of music? that tune is on a loop in my head. dunh dunh, dahhhh dahhh dahhh dahhh, dun dun dah. you know what i'm talking about. totally brings up a visual of one of those times they had big sharp pokey things on the rocky surface of a planet and thrashed about in torn shirts.

last week i attended an "arts in crisis" seminar presented by michael kaiser from the kennedy center. i enjoyed myself and ate bagels. it was nothing groundbreaking as far as the ideas being presented. however, it was a nice chance to mingle with other artists/arts type people in the area. the gathering also gave me an opportunity to be reminded of all the simple things i can sometimes forget when it comes to marketing. there are times when you just need to have someone else remind you of the things you already know to get you motivated, and that's the most effective kind of talk to me.

i'm going to get started on a couple more households soon. is there a better term for what i've been doing than household excavation? see, i don't make people get rid of everything. i don't redecorate for them. there is no construction going on in the process. it's simply a way to remove a lot of garbage and make people think about what they want in a house. if ideas come up about organization and interior design, i help them make a plan of what to get done. it's the culling and reducing of shit; that's the process i'm really into, and then we can get a modified clean slate. what would you call something like that?

my mind is full of whapping lately. whap, whap, whap - just like that shredded tire you hear that makes you pull over and regroup. i can hear the sound faintly, in between rounds of that star trek tune.

if it's in reference to hobbes, shouldn't it be pronounced hobb-zee-yun, as opposed to the way i keep hearing it, hoe-bee-zee-yun? what the fuck, man?!? this really must be a trick they're playing on me.

maybe the sorting and removing is like artistic inspiration for me. it certainly falls under sociology, almost like it's a domestic adventure. i love to see what's important for people to keep, and haven't yet encountered a situation where i could judge someone for it. trust me, i can judge on a lot of things, but the contents of a person's house is hardly one of them. short of having hygiene issues or hazards, it's too personal to say what someone else should cherish. i mean, my little collection of bizarre miniature plastic toys might raise an eyebrow. let's not even talk about my penchant for bottle caps.

at long last, the show opens this week. yay for us! we have two really fun artists for the gallery, the tech designs should be fantastico, and my actors are all ready. we've now come to the point where it feels as if we've been doing this forever and we just want to get going. come on out and see us, faithful audience.

i heart my ticket stub diary! eee!

lately i am curious. not about anything in particular, but about everything i encounter in some way. that is to say, i am easily fascinated by things. it leads me to collect all sorts of trivia and tidbits about nothing much relating to anything, but it's still strangely exciting. there was a time not so long ago where i could give a shit less about much of anything, including the stuff i found interesting. it's an odd quality, no doubt the thing that is producing the whapping noise, yet i appreciate it in spite of its borderline mania producing effects. it's like i just can't stop thinking and wondering and supposing what if to the world. then i wear myself out and wake up the next day wondering who took off my shoes.

what's up with all the hitchhikers around here lately?

yes, derek is on facebook. no, i am not going to get a facebook account. this is as consistent as i can stand for posting online. there's no way i could keep up with some wall of spamming and getting messages beyond my email boxes. it's all too much for me. i've just now conquered my fears of learning how to burn cd's and get digital photos printed. if you really want me to get in touch with you, i probably already know how. if you want to find me, it's pretty easy. i have become a texting fiend, so doesn't that at least count?

i really like asparagus. it's no mighty avocado, mind you, but a tasty green food nonetheless. (those of you who've known me for a while possibly remember my posting some time ago about the mighty avocado. nothing has changed there.) and since autumn is here, i need more yams and more squash. mushy tubers and hearty greens - woo hoo!

it's my humble opinion that academics should learn how to write like they talk. being a big snotty pedantic in your book doesn't help me to grasp what the hell you're saying. it doesn't make me any smarter. it makes me want to read sweet valley high books instead of slogging through your gajillion word sentences until my eyes cross in frustration. speaking of which, i really need to catch up on the wimpy kid series. ooh, and i got a great comedic fake memoir to bring to book club this weekend.

miracle of the week:
i'm not waiting for the other shoe to drop.

13 October 2009

how to be exciting on a monday

so i said that other people's lives are more interesting than your own, which can definitely feel true when you're just slogging through your day buying cat litter. i also told you to have a story to tell every day. this helps me to feel more interesting.

last night was more interesting. dance party on a monday night! scott and zoe hosted a random party night, complete with nerf guns, disco lights, and grilling. they both donned drawn-on mustaches for the event. we took a cue from zoe, as she is nine years old, and let loose with goofiness. the fan in the middle of the room had floating balloons. we did fashion model scarf-dancing, parading through doorways with our best sashays. scott put on a crazy penguin hat while flinging about in a festive way. we inhaled the sopapilla cheesecake and pigged out on cheeseburgers and hot dogs. yeesh, i can only imagine how hard it was for scott to get zoe to go to bed after all that excitement. she's already the best sort of spazzoid during the day.

the rest of the day, before dance party hoo-ha, i spent concentrated on social darwinism and the amorality of power. yes yes yes, turbo-nerd has invaded. it was more fun than it sounds, especially when i compared the proliferation hannah montana to televised executions. for the first time in class, i was revered as a creative revolutionary. and did you know that the concept of social darwinism really doesn't have a staid definition? it has several, most of which directly contradict each other. how refreshing to realize once again that the "expert theorists" have no idea what they're really talking about and have to create a paradoxical term that allows for many things. see, it's because SD is my new serendipity. even though i have brought it up in conversation lately, it's also been that thing that pops up when i'm not expecting it. just when i forget about it, someone brings it up in class, or i see reference to it on the web, or darwin turns into a zombie and drops by the house for potstickers. he explained to me that you can throw away some of the less savory elements of the terminology and focus on promoting the personalities of people in a positive way. it's not about just the white people being totally cool anymore. it's about accountability and character. redefining is fun, huh?

this means i have the most neat-o peeps, because i'm pretty hard on people.

oh, and i got a call yesterday to direct another show. yay! holly made fun of me, because she knows how much ayn rand drives me berserk, and yet i applied to direct the night of january 16th after i get done with my current production. at least i can rest assured that derek is going to be excited about helping me with my new project. i haven't worked with this company before, so i'm branching out a little bit here.

after getting totally worn out from thinking too hard and doing silly dances while avoiding nerf pellets, i came home and watched stuart act like a rubber band. what on earth? he's got a nighttime switch that comes on and shoots him around the house with little thuds as he runs into a wall here and there from gaining too much velocity. i passed out fully clothed on the sofa, making me infinitely more interesting than if i had been a sensible person who went to bed at a reasonable hour.

more creative inspiration:
i spent way too much money at indie emporium this past weekend, but it was worth it. i got some great new art pieces for me and terrific presents for other people. tomorrow i'm going to an arts in crisis conference, and my head is whapping with excitement.

11 October 2009

what common sense tries to me while i'm in pajamas, besides that whole embrace the suckage thing

if only you hit shuffle enough times on your music, you will find just what you're looking for and have an epiphany.

you should have a story to tell every single day.

don't run out of coffee before you get dressed.

find one thing to get done every day, even if it's just getting your face washed before you go to bed or taking out the trash.

every show needs a number. (you know, like a song and dance thing.)

try to at least vaguely learn who wrote what classic literature so you don't look like a complete jackass when you're at the bookstore.

stop putting things in that special place so you won't lose them. that's the surest way to lose them.

there was a meeting. that's how it came about. and they weren't really kidding when they had that meeting. someone thought it was a good idea. if you don't believe me, just watch "snakes on a plane" again late at night.

keep some stamps around the house.

eat some vegetables, damnit.

your cats cannot understand you talking. they are hungry and want your adoring attention. and your spot on the sofa. but you can pretend anyway.

shut up once in a while.

there is absolutely nothing wrong with sitting in your bathtub fully clothed. even if you do have the shower running at the time.

yes, you are just a little bit fat. get over yourself and be proud of your wobbly bits. they're never going to go away no matter what you do. i mean, really. so what.

hanging upside down can be good for you.

there is only so much tape you can put on a package before you have to wonder if it still counts as recycling.

hang up your artwork. there's a reason you got it, or made it, and i doubt that reason was for all of it to sit on the floor while you come up with the perfect arrangement on the wall. it's fine to move it around later if you don't like it that way.

you can never have too many flashlights.

get a pair of sensible shoes. treat your feet well.

figure out if there's a reason you have so many empty boxes stuffed in closets and such. if you want to keep them you can, but you don't have to. there will always be another box. there will always be more bubble wrap. there will always be more tape.

other people's lives always seem more interesting or exciting than your own. but you're just as much of a cool weirdo as they are when it's someone else hearing about you. they've probably never met the wrong miss america or heard a holocaust survivor say, "oh, i understand. the holocaust is over, but traffic is every day." think about it.

friends in town, friends out of town:
another long-lostie in town this week - yay! so now i've seen kris, tanya, samantha, and tara all within a month! looks like andy and veronica are coming around next. guess that means it's time for me to drag my ass outta town somewhere and see people, too. that old flight credit is a-calling to me...

07 October 2009

why i won't cast stephen brown in a show again

every day i tell someone how much i love my cast. seriously. well, the part i hadn't realized in this was that i meant the cast i was actually working with every rehearsal. there are eleven people in this show, and we were constantly working with ten of them. the last one had a lot of conflicts that we've been working around... until now. so what i must've meant to say was that i love my cast, minus one rude fuck shit motherfucker.

but he's gone now, so up his and the horse he rode in on, nanny nanny boo boo. but the so-called loss we suffered (momentarily) is quite entertaining, especially for other chronic swearers and avid fans of the word fuck, so here's the basic what-have-you on what happened last sunday night:

me: is there some reason you think you don't have to say the script as written?
him: i can say that in performance, but i didn't think i'd have to in rehearsal.
me: you need to say the lines. i've dealt with this problem before, and he understood the difference between being himself and playing a character. the sooner you do it, the easier it will be for you. fuck shit, motherfucker, bullshit. come on, you need the practice.
him: i said i would do it later on. i just don't see why it's necessary right now.
me: this is why i told everyone about it up front and said i would not be changing any of the script for anyone. remember that? it would change the character. you have to do it.
him: oh, i understand that, but i didn't think that applied to rehearsal.
me: have you met me? what about me says that you can get away with that?
him: i mean, i can do it on stage, but...
me: when you're in rehearsal, you are on stage.
him: oh, i see.
me: just get it over with. you're messing up the other actors.

for a moment he did acquiesce and do his shit correctly. but even after that whole scene, he waited until i had my head turned answering someone's questions and still tried to rewrite his character. luckily, missy is an astute stage manager who stayed on his ass and made him do it again until he read the script as written. then she continued to correct him on every last syllable that he tried to change to fit some moral standard that he had conveniently invented for himself on the spot. i heart missy, lemme tell ya.

so now, keep in mind that i cast this show about a month ago. he's had time to read the entire script and discuss any problems with us for a very long time. he could've at least just walked out of that rehearsal and quit. he could've pulled me aside privately at any time and said he changed his mind. oh, but no. he called me two days later and asked me to call him back. i tried to call him over the week, because i was pretty sure what the deal was, and i should have just kicked him out in the first place when he put up such a fuss, but i was trying to give someone the benefit of the doubt and "be nice" and work with someone. by friday, when i hadn't heard anything else, i had stopped even thinking about it went to my meeting talking about our wonderful show.

my ringer was off at the time and i didn't check my messages until saturday morning, at which time i discovered he'd called me friday evening, just at his call time for his other show so i couldn't have called him back, and dropped out of the part via voicemail. according to him, it was some kind of traumatic dilemma that he had to say those things. in making him do so for no good reason, because of course he'd already promised to do it for a performance, i had become a ruthless and relentless who crossed ethical lines. it was too much, boo hoo and blah blah poor me, hope this isn't a problem and i haven't inconvenienced anyone, and so forth.

sofia coppola! i. mean. really.

let's recap this - we audition and cast before labor day, rehearse without him except for weekends, explain to the woman playing his wife that it'll be okay, he throws a fit, i try to contact him, he waits and makes his replacement miss another entire week of rehearsals before he says anything, and i'm the bad person? what-the-fuck-ever, man. such unprofessional and inconsiderate actions get in gossip mill fast around here, and he should know that. if anyone asks, i'll just let them know that he can't say the lines of a script as written, he's unreliable, and he doesn't consider the other cast and crew working on a project before being a whiny baby who wastes everyone's time. in short, totally not worth the risk or effort. oh, and it gets even better and more hilarious than that. he can't say "motherfucker" out loud, but he was in oedipus last week! OEDIPUS! and antigone! that's some disgusting shit, in case you didn't know. but it's better to be it than to say it, right?

when you're done laughing and shooting milk out of your nose (did i finally get you with that one, mary?) you can see how dumb this really is. but don't forget that i dodged a real bullet here. he could've totally jacked this up for all of us. with my trusty cell made of gold, i made a few calls and had someone in to read for the part a few hours later. now we have a new robert in our cast, and the person doing it was my dream choice for it anyway! so it turns out i was lucky in this whole thing! what could have been a horrible day worked into an even better cast than i got in the first place.

when life gives you lemons, put on some lipstick. that's what i say. must have picked out the right shade that day, because now i can truly say that i love my crew and my cast... every last one of them. what's more, i have a really fucking funny story to tell. because oedipus is a classic, you know.

the other thing from last weekend:
derek and i took a screen printing class from carla, and it was a blast! jenny and ryan went too, and we had so much fun. derek made some cool prints and t-shirts, one of which he's wearing right now. i made two awesome tote bags. i MADE stuff all by myself! it was just the artistic inspiration we've been missing around the house.

30 September 2009

i'll have the equinox with a side of chili, please

so it's finally fall, and i'm dragging out all the clothes i lurrrve. my turtleneck anxiously await their yearly coming out, and the jackets beckon to me. unfortunately, we've only had about two days of autumn so far. it was bee-yoo-tee-full for a brief moment, with a backsliding back into the last fighting bits of summer sun.

i'm even the tiniest bit pink from my swan lake outing with kris and les enfants yesterday morning, despite the use of sunscreen. kris looks happy, if not completely exhausted, with the little people in their cruiser. miss mo-mo, as i instantly began to call her, looks at you with a certain suspicion that you're going to bother her when she least feels like being sociable. audrey is a pistol with her ammunition being tons and tons of words. i can't believe so many people around me are becoming parents of little people. the fuzzy people i'm used to, but this is a whole new thing. it's still odd to me. some of the little people walk, and even talk in complete sentences now.

when i look at my friends, time doesn't seem to pass, but when i look at their people, this "new thing" i'm adjusting to in their lives freaks me out sometimes. however, either the pod people haven't taken them all away yet or i'm like a boiling frog in their mommy and daddy stock pots of conversation. i have faith in them and i've met their kids. let's vote for the first option.

school sucks, but i'm learning something. fair enough trade?

project scooter is going bye bye today. we have coincidentally managed to sell it to someone from the seattle area, which makes me laugh. i think the boys should get another one and work on it over the fall, but derek has moved on to project fountain pen in an effort to keep busy right now. next i'm going to put him on sound design so he can obsess over getting those electric chair buzzes and police sirens just so for me. maybe if i ask nicely enough he'll agree without much of a fuss and enjoy tapping away on his computer to do it. yes, he's managed to occupy his time in between job interviews quite well. (he's got three more interviews this week so far.) he is much more patient than i ever could be, in this or any other situation, which i admire about him. in the meantime, he's also doing an awesome job of fattening me up for winter. derek's chili is uber-good!

modern political theory = dead white guy, dead white guy, dead middle eastern guy, dead mediterranean guy, dead white guy, etc. am i excited about machiavelli or what?

you know what else is hard for me to get? so many people driving around with their windows up all the time. it's finally turning into great weather and they're still in auto cocoons. there can't possibly be that many people with allergies in cars. as many who've ridden in my car while freezing to death can attest, i love to roll down the windows. being in a car magically turns me into a puppy dog with the need to get wind in my hair. on a long road trip i'll roll them up as a courtesy to others, or maybe when it's raining hard enough to get all my stuff wet, but otherwise i'm all breeze. maybe i was buried alive in a car during a past life and just can't stand to be confined anymore.

rehearsals are going very well. we just got our set (what little there is of it) put up and it'll be painted soon. joel came last night to discuss lighting design with me. people are off book way before my ridiculous deadlines. if things keep up like this, i may give them an extra day off to go have a life. not to be overconfident, but we're ahead of schedule and i just don't want them getting totally bored. we're all excited about the show right now and i'd be pleased if that momentum could be sustained for the next few weeks until opening. guess it's my job to keep them going. more death penalty statistics, anyone? that should help to motivate the sing-along. you know it's my theory that every show should have a number. just because this one has people exonerated from prison doesn't mean it should be exempt from such a fabulous guideline. as mary says, "remember, it's supposed to be a HAPPY ending to the show. they all got released in real life!" right-o, toots. i gotcha. happy happy joy joy.

the funniest thing derek said today:
okay, so if you were roman polanski, would you really want someone like woody allen coming out publicly in your defense?

25 September 2009

why thinking is like being gassy

well yes, i aced one test and failed another. so be it. who needs the honor roll when you can just be done with it? i only have to pass, not be spectacular, and as i have often said to others, "in real life everyone has a C average." fuck 'em. it's a good thing i get points just for showing up and having smarty pants things to say in class.

my epiphanies in school as of late are like farts. they come on out of nowhere, i begin to make a face as i smell them, and BOOM! then they dissipate and i forget they were ever there. no silent but deadly ones yet, but some embarrassing intellectual queefs (or queebs, depending on how you say the word - i have heard both variations) have popped out of my mouth without notice. the kind of thing that's sensible enough to say, yet leaves you with a wide-eyed start and lingering playback in your own head. they're shocking and amusing all at the same time, but i'd prolly rather not bring them up later unless i'm amongst a group of good-humored friends.

maybe i should get a book of farts to go along with my studies. it should be one with sound effects, of course. no sense in learning about what dead white guys pondered unless i'm being entertained at the same time. too bad my fart machine was stolen so long ago. wait, do i have something that burps? maybe flarp would work well here. flarp as a study aid. hmmm, i like the sound of that. see there, derek and all the other boys were right... it really IS the perfect toy!

yes, veronica, you do hate me:
i'm doing my new shoes dance! in my nuwsed fluevog knee-high boots! does it make you feel better that they're called fellowships?

22 September 2009

turbo-nerd strikes again

okay, so i admit that homework sucks. studying isn't my favorite thing either. the college thing doesn't really seem to be my scene at all. the main motivation i'm getting to stay is from other people's excitement that i'm trying to finish. my heart isn't in it, but if they can be happy for me, i can keep on plugging away at this goofiness.

apparently, one of my professors is rewarding me for my patience. not only does he not a final scheduled as of yet, he also has no big fat "grade by weight" paper due anytime. i get to write short papers for him each week, which is fine by me. contrary to derek's belief when he has to listen to me babbling, i can say a lot with only a thousand words. in another stunning bit of joy, we're having a geography test today! if you know me, you know i have a slight obsession with maps.

give me an atlas and i can be completely quiet for an entire hour, lost in those pages. (derek, don't get any ideas!) taking a geography test sounds like torture to some people, but for me it's like putting a puzzle together. looking at maps is like travel in itself for me. i stare at the pink and green and whatever color blobs laid out in ever-changing shapes and whisk myself away all over the world. oh, and don't even get me started on historical maps. watching history come alive as the borders shift and empires disappear? this must be what mary feels like when she reads a jane austen novel. it creates an uncontrollable sigh of awe. i pore my fingers over the pages in an attempt to discover their secrets. what happened there? which people woke up in a new country without even knowing it? what if those mountains didn't exist?

it's unabashed nerdiness, and i love it. looking at books filled with wondrous maps was what got me interested in social studies so long ago. they provided just the tool that was needed to escape my own world and see something bigger. so yes, this test seems like something of an academic gift to me. better ace it, huh?

happy happy joy joy:
it's jacket weather! i can finally breathe again!

17 September 2009

get back in business, baby

tanya came to visit! she just left today to go see her mom on the way back to maryland. hmph, i should've had her cut my hair while she was here, but eating sushi and mexican food together was enough for this time. it's hard to believe she finally cleaned out her storage unit after three years. i imagine it must have been like a hannibal lecter thing after all this time, complete with an antique automobile and a detached face in a jar.

i really wish she could start her own catering business, but the laws in that part of the country are apparently very draconian for startups. she told me that there are only so many liquor licenses issued in that state, so obtaining one from a former business can cost up to a million dollars. once i cleaned out my ears and realized she wasn't kidding, i became irrationally angry on her behalf. all she wants is a little dessert and drink cafe! what the fuck?!? don't they know she could be creating new jobs in the area? this is what i don't understand about all this talk of getting the economy back on track.

not to get too political or anything, but new or aspiring boutique/small businesses all over are constantly being discouraged by regulations and cost. it's a lot easier to get things going in this part of the country, but some of the tax laws just bury you in the end. if we really want to divert some of the cash flow from simply being held by gigantic corporations and get people spending, how about making it a bit more attractive to pull ourselves up by our own bootstraps? where the hell is our personal bailout?!?! people like tanya could redirect that money into a plausible business plan and generate a positive cash flow within their own communities, thereby instilling some faith in a local economy. once that happens, it's only a matter of time before things begin stabilizing. if people can feel secure in what they know and see every single day, they stop psyching themselves out in a larger realm.

maybe i'm just pulling off some great asstalk here, but it would seem to me that the psychological component of financial recovery plays a huge part in boom goes the dynamite. if tiny leaks can sink a ship, what can plugging up the little holes do for it? ugh, it sounds like i've been spending too much time around derek. either that or i'm oversimplifying the whole thing. consumer faith shouldn't be in denial of reality, but it also can't let the chicken little effect take over entirely and keep the panic going forever.

but then , i keep on spending our money, so we're helpers to the economy. and people keep on buying my old stuff, so they're helpers, too. maybe it's like i heard on the radio one day not so long ago - people will get back out there. they can't help but do it. after a while, staying home to hoard and save all of your money just gets too boring.

who i heart this week:

16 September 2009

bye bye britney

britney spears has been my neighbor this week. no kidding, really! she was doing a show in town and staying at the hotel on my street. we pulled off the freeway coming home a few nights ago and saw flashing lights. "is that at the hotel or our house?" i asked derek. he surmised the hotel and crept along the road until we pulled up next to them. it's normal to see big trucks and whatnot near us from the shows here, so we scanned the local calendars in our heads to figure out who it was this time.

"oh yeah! it's gotta be britney spears!" but why would she need a police escort? more directly, why would only her freight truck need an escort? riding past the side doors to the hotel, we saw the answer. what could be so important in her gear that it needs protection, you ask? it was a small rolling flatbed filled with pallets of bottled water! yes, britney takes that kabbalah water pretty fucking seriously, i suppose. we wouldn't want to poison a rock star with something from the tap, or even something filtered. everyone knows that.

the show was last night and traffic in our 'hood started piling up before people even got off work. i poked my head outside to spy on the back of the hotel. see, i used to work there and eon ago, ago we would have to send famous people out the service entrance that the employees used to come to work. in my younger days, i once led two singers through the service halls and the kitchen, then literally drove them across the street to their entrance at a performance venue, just so they wouldn't have to walk through the lookey-loos in the lobby. hmm, wonder what britney thought of the ancient time clock sitting in the hallway.

i didn't check to see if there were any more water bottles getting an escort out of the building this morning. maybe she stuck around just long enough to hit a few rockin' barbecue joints and the daylight donut shop. but if i find a random kabbalah bottle on the side of the road, i promise to think of her fondly.

blech! in job news:
they want me to come back to my old job. i hate interviewing, but i also hate driving out on that side of town. still thinking about it, but i'm trying to hold out for now.
derek had another phone interview this week. i'll let you know. we're also doing some local networking for him that might pay off if we're lucky.

11 September 2009

words i like today - chapter one

today's installment of random weirdo crap will be including things i to say and/or write. we all have this secret list in our heads, whether we admit it or not. i'm just cool because i like to admit in public that i'm a goofy nerd. like the other day when i was out to lunch with tanya and discovered that i had my underpants on inside out. it wouldn't have been so funny had i not come out of the ladies' room at fuji and told her all about it. yeah, i'm hip like that. it's part of my charm.

  • MOIST - because i can
  • retractable - it works the mouth and yet rolls off the tongue
  • geezer - damn, that's just fun to say, and it has EEE!
  • quaint - it's an enchanting thing, don't you think?
  • craptacular - mary makes me love this
  • monumentous - a word i heard on trash tv, used to describe when something is both momentous and monumental. thanks for more trash, liz!
  • falafel - again, just a fun thing to say. like waffle. good to say, good to eat. everyone's happy all around.
  • hoo ha - is it a party? is it a vagina? is it a fight? who knows?!?
  • tank - there's something very sturdy about it. this is an excellent example of a word sounding exactly like what it is.
  • kerfuffle - ranks up there with moist and waffle on my all-time faves list. so great it's almost better than fercockety.
  • pisser - any variation on piss has slowly become a close second to fuck in my exclamatory swearing, in spite of its rather benign meanings and reactions. third place goes to "sofia coppola!" because she just sucks.
  • woof - okay, so animal noises in general always rank high with me.

poor bubbenstein:
bubba is looking ashy and rashy, so he has to go to the vet today. we think it's just some kind of skin thing, but he's going for a visit to be on the safe side. the humidity hasn't done much to improve the hairstyling of dizzy or stuart either. good to know it's not just my hair that looks poopy in this weather.

10 September 2009

another week in the fray

my latest nuwsed item that i love? a pink armless wingback chair from the local consignment store. stuart copeland seems to love it as well, so i've decided to share it with him.... as if i have a choice. he didn't like the day i put double-stick tape on the cushion. it was meant to train everyone to stay offa my damn chair! it worked until i took off the tape, at which point they all took turns resuming their "this is mine" posturing on the matching pillow. right now it's piled high with photo albums and postcards, but the second those things move it'll be a furry land run once again.

holly says my house looks very cozy after all this nesting. it puts me on the verge of being afraid i've become boring. then i take my pill and remember that i'm kind of a lunatic. that's reassuring in the oddest way. bawk bawk bawk!

i looked at my birthday calendar for september. in figuring out that there is someone marked on almost every single day, i deduced that the holiday season would produce some good lovin' and many babies later on for people. happy new year, eh?

the humidity here has turned my hair into a total grease ball. it never quite dries, it's always yucky, and i can't seem to keep it outta my face. my hairdresser promised he wouldn't cut it off while the thermometer reads over 60, because he knows i just get hot and sweaty. if i can only make it through a few more weeks, i should be good until springtime. looks like this is a job for pigtails.

and i'll prolly just shave it off in the spring anyway. it's my cycle of hair. too long and i cut it off. after missing my pigtails, i grow it out again unti i can't stand it anymore. do i still have a decent headshot to go with my short hair? i'll have to make nick take some more shots next time around. for now i might dye it a stoopid color, just because i can. hmmm, wonder what kind of backup colors i have in the bathroom cabinet.

our first rehearsal went great! perhaps we're sick people, but we were relieved to see that there is much more humor in this play than anticipated. if you can't laugh at the death penalty and exoneration, what can you laugh at, right? julie was in the next room last night and said she heard us periodically cackling with gusto. whee! excitement! this is going to be much more fun than i had even hoped before! i'm going with a different approach in structuring things - lines before blocking this time. the script is very organic (not to sound all hoity toity and shit) in nature, so i want to get the stories down in their heads before we move around. the bodies will follow, but i don't see any flailing in our future.

veronica would be proud of me. with eleven actors in the show, and many of them cast as several people, i made a color-coded map of who is on what page and what character they play each time. you just had to know that all those dozens of sharpies would come in handy for me. it looks like a road map to hell with pretty colors. maybe i'll give it to her as a late birthday present when we're all finished.

derek's revelation of the week:
he can set and control the tivo from his ipod. it's the little geeky things in life that truly make him happy.

08 September 2009

embrace the suckage and let it go

the show is cast! and if i do say so myself, i have gotten some truly faboo peeps. we were lucky enough to have gotten in some people with chops and strong opinions. since i have a penchant for collaboration, this work to my advantage in making my job easier. i'm sure i'll be slapping my forehead when la revolucion begins, but it'll be worth it.

"speak up! move left! move right! pick up your cues! enunciate! stay in the lights!" that's my job as a director. i don't do pre-blocking unless there is a part in the script that calls for it or i just have one little teensy thing here and there that i have worked out in my head. i do not give line readings. i do not have simple answers regarding "my motivation" in a show. my task is to bring out the best in other people, not to squish them into a box or let them hide out.

if they cry and hate me, well.... they'll get over it, right? tough love, that's what i say. i'm not the kind of person who was ever known for her tactfulness skills anyway. i'm direct (no pun intended) and i know what i like. nothing makes me happier in a show than when people surprise me with something better than what i had in mind before. looking like a fool is a daily ritual for me. reckless abandon in odd behavior is my friend. i'm kind of an asshole without realizing it and don't mind people calling me a bitch. i hate hurting people's feelings - in fact, i cry often about it - but i know sometimes you have to be blunt to get through to people.

embrace the suckage and let it go.

that has become my personal motto. if at first you fuck up completely, laugh about it and move along. it's useful when trying to balance out your perfectionist side. even if everything could be all goldilocks, i would still be rearranging a dead chicken on stage until i got it jusssssst riiight. uh, that's perhaps not the most cohesive reference, but just trust me this time.

so when i call mary or veronica in the coming weeks and complain that the cast hates me and i had a bad night at rehearsal, they should remind me to embrace the suckage. and then remind me to let it go. not that i can be obsessive or anything. who 's talking about obsessive? me? never. i didn't just rearrange the post-its on my desk. you can't prove anything.

what i hate about looking for a job:
being looked over like meat
taking out my nosering
having to look at my own resume
brushing my hair
not saying "fuckers!" in an interview

02 September 2009

random side notes - chapter twenty one

altruistic things i did this week:
gave a pregnant hitchhiker a ride to the bus station to meet up with a friend of hers (it was night and she was all alone and a sweet girl)
stopped by a broken down car to ask if they need to use my phone (they already had someone on the way to help them out and tow the car)
let derek finish the dulce de leche ice cream in the freezer without a fight (i had some at book club and have bee spoon-scavenging ever since)

the party this past weekend went off with barely a hitch. we got terrific food and prizes! the singers got a great reception, so thanks to kelly and sally and harriet and liz. our little "movie preview" ploy seemed to go over as a hit. i just want to get some good ticket sales outta the whole thing, because some of us spent all day on friday running around town to pick up food and things. overall, i would say it was a raging success and attendance was even more than we had expected.

our scooter team did a hilarious ride, led and anchored by harleys, honking all the way down the street while i passed out stickers for the theatre. do you have a flag? we do!!! it billowed on the back of a harley as they rode past. derek was a sweetie and organized the whole thing for us. the scooter team also managed to win a scooter scavenger hunt on sunday, garnering all of us even more praise and laughter. i'm not quite sure how they all squished into a telephone booth, but harriet and tony have the photos to prove it actually happened. this was a good weekend for publicity.

derek got me an old-lady pill box with the days of the week on it. a couple of weeks ago, i forgot to take my pill and felt strangely drugged and twitchy. now i must ask you this: how does one feel so loopy by NOT taking a pill? it's possible that i may be addicted to my antidepressant - wheeeeee!

speaking of old ladies, has anyone else started to become coupon-obsessed lately? it feels like i've stepped over the line here. however, i haven't gone so far into the abyss that i refuse to go out without having a coupon in hand. it's just nice to bogo (buy one/get one free) my frozen custard with linsey and cameron. there's this peanut butter and banana thing that i just can't resist and... ouch. i think i'm turning into elvis.

mary promises to try and put up cool photos every day this month in her blog. she has a million of them. i'm going to hold her to it. oh, the pressure!

we never realized exactly how many cd's we had before we started getting rid of them. yes, we've gone to digitizing and selling off the collection. about half of it is gone - and we've started in on the dvd's as well - and we still have a whole rack of stuff. this works out for me since i adore going to the post office. it's my not-so-secret hobby to put things in packages and send them away. how can megan be afraid of such a thing? though i think that since she met the APC machine, her fears have subsided.

i heard on NPR that the most hated word in the english language is moist. people think it sounds dirty or something like that. it's a word i've always liked because it sounds just like what it really means. my criteria for loving a word over a long period of time is just that. these are things i think about in the middle of the night. don't judge - you do it too. moist. say it again. moist. ooooh yeah, i like that. moist. um...maybe it is a bit naughty.

homework sucks. but in a soothing way.

the auditions went well and i did have a lot of people show up. i'll cast the show this week and start on rehearsals after labor day. i'm happy to see that we're finding humor in such a downer subject. my big thanks go to the playwrights for making that easier. with the talented selection of people i got in the auditions, i'm looking forward to seeing how the production turns out next month. this script is going to need a road map for navigation.

favorite podcasts this week:
wait wait don't tell me (of course)
live from london: eddie izzard and simon amstell
the onion radio news

30 August 2009

i should be doing homework, right?

got some reading done this afternoon, but i'll have to go over it again tomorrow. my face is in the shape of "quoi?" this evening when i think about the basics of modern political theory and the effects of realism on contemporary diplomatic strategy. maybe i at least sound smart when i talk about what confuses me. takes a big head to fit all those big words, and i have just the hat collection to prove it.

so it looks like the plan to get rid of the trees is gone. for now they have some ultrasonic thingabobbydoodle that helps them calm down and quit pooping on everyone so much. now they probably just take aim on their adversaries. don't ask me - i've only ever been hit once on the side of the car while passing under the birdy social club, and i'm pretty sure it was just from some bird making another bird laugh until they peed. that's an understandable mishap. we've all wet our pants in public at one time or another.

the boys have decided to infest the desk again. they're like little cat gargoyles that follow me around while her highness tries to claim every other spot in the house for herself. stuart copeland is, as usual, laying across my wrists while i type or google and simultaneously burrowing his forehead into the crook of my elbow, a position that can only guarantee that i waste more time looking up historical figures that share my birthday. bubba is kind enough to wander the top of the desk, jump down a step and hog the seating, then shuffle off to go splay on the rug.

holy mofo.

ahoy, i have done it at last.

stuart has finally, FINALLY been coaxed into a cat yodel! my sidekick kitty just removed his forehead from burrowing just long enough for me to rearrange my hand. when i scooted my wrist over, my non-muttering kitty meowed and let me shake him about just long enough to get the teeniest, squeakiest yodel. EEE! am i a sick person for taking joy in such a passing thing? no no no stuart, you don't have to get up now. see there? comfy now? my wrist will survive without circulation, but i can't survive without the cuteness. me likee squeaky.

there's no way i can get any homework done after this.

when my hand gets feeling again:
i'll tell you about my weekend. (but liz, i thank you for the inside info. that's what i call dodging an attitude bullet.) and i'll make derek tell about the scooters...

28 August 2009

weekend of whirlwind


the opening is tonight and i am whoop-a-dee-doo excited. somewhere around my normal stage fright time this afternoon (3pm or so) i should get the feeling that i'm going to throw up, followed by the "no one is coming to my birthday party" anxiety. by the time the reception starts it will settle down and i can breathe. i've practiced my tour speechifying, i know what i'm wearing, and i have plans to pick up a buttload of food for the whole wingding. let's hope my cuteness holds up for the evening so we can sell some season tickets.

tomorrow morning is the road rally to promote our new season. derek is heading up a group of scooters and hogs to parade around town with a banner and wear theatre shirts while demurely honking and waving. i think it'll be terribly cute, and it's a free and fun way for us to get some more attention. who in their right mind wouldn't look quizzically at a giant herd of scooters rolling down the street?

tomorrow afternoon are my auditions, which i've been shoving down people's throats to make sure everyone possible is aware. i've called in some select people to audition for me, so i'm hoping for a turnout of really good actors. missy has saved my hide and my sanity by agreeing to stage manage for me. now we can sit together behind that table and look all official and stuff.

after i recover from all that, there will be another dig in session on my homework. hehehe, i love to say that i have homework. for some reason it's funny to me. my classes are turning out to be quite interesting, even if they make me feel confused sometimes. it's important for a snarky person like me to be put into her place on an intellectual level and made to really think hard about things.

now i must run and do and be and blah bitty blah. now where did i put those notes i made for my tours? what time do we go pick everything up for tonight? do i still need to go to the post office with packages to mail? is the camera charged for the event? are the hello nametags in my car? where is my head?!?

why my brother is so damn hilarious:
chris sent us an entire box of mre food this week in the mail. right now i have a vacuum-sealed brown package on my desk that says "shortbread cookie" on it. we want to know why military rations come with cookies and tootsie rolls. is that how you bribe the locals in a war?

26 August 2009


derek has become an activist. right now he's on the phone with the audobon society. see, we have these giant sycamores out in front of our building. each year as summer turns to autumn, they attract a gigantic herd of purple martins that roost and tweet in the trees for about an hour or so each evening. this goes on from maybe august until early october, starting around 8 pm. they socialize for a bit and then go to sleep with tweety little hums.

and when i say gigantic, i mean HUGE! there have been estimates that say we get up to 200,000 birds in our neighborhood every night. the sight is spectacular. they buzz past the spires of a catholic church, take a turn past the hospital, come back around a hotel, and then lackadaisically gather in the trees. they jet between two buildings and flap flap flap past one another in grand formations, soaring up and down like dark pellets in the sky. we love to watch and listen to this in the evening. it's a comforting sign that the seasons are going to change and the world moves along.

some people are not so poetic. they think the birds are a nuisance and that the flock is the devil in the form of bird poop. they hate the noise and think the birds suck. our condo association is trying to remove the sycamores to get rid of the purple martins. how rude! don't they know the martins are protected here? doesn't it seem logical that the birds will just find another nearby set of trees (and we have some more on the other side of the building) to call home for a short time? isn't it silly to go outside of your house banging pots and pans to make 200,000 birds fly away? yes we did see someone trying that last night. just picture it for yourself when you need a good laugh.

our first response to this was to sign the petition to save the sycamores. derek has also been on the phone talking to the up with trees people. his call to audobon led to the finding that other residents have already talked to them several days in a row about this. so it looks like we may be working towards some kind of solution.

we knew when we moved in that the birds came here in the fall. perhaps others weren't so lucky, but that's no reason to get in a tizzy. we also discovered shortly after moving in that the wasps like to fly around our building; like really high up, even. some days i walk out onto my balcony and they pop up to say hello, trying to get in the house to torment the cats. they can go all the way to the 20th floor when they feel like it. these wasps are mostly friendly and just living their waspy lives, but they sure are determined little suckers. as nature would have it, the martins find the wasps quite tasty, so it would seem. voila - problem solved!

isn't this what we call, like, an ecosystem circle of life thingy? duh.

we'll see if the media gets involved. our neighbor is calling the news stations. derek has a project he can get behind, so i am proud of him. in the meantime, we can listen to the birds each night and cuddle on the sofa with the kitties.

i've said it before and i'll say it again:
the world's best cat litter really IS a wonderful thing! sherry converted over to it and thanked me for the shopping advice. finally, something that me and derek and all three cats can agree on for the litter box.

21 August 2009

wearing socks with coffee cups on them while drinking coffee

it's raining men! hallelujah! it's raining men!

okay, so maybe not, but i do love that song. on the other hand, i am finally getting paid on work i did this year. what happens when people have the wrong address for you? you sweat it out and make phone calls until your check comes in the mail. then you go to the financial aid office (i'm a college student again!) and beg for more money until they give it to you. and they say the economy is in a recession. pffft.

not many plans for the weekend. i have a work call to get ready for the big theatre party next weekend. book club is on sunday and i don't even know what i've read yet. it was probably some geeky thing about socio-whatnot, and goodness knows i have to read a lot more of that for my classes. (did i mention that i'm a college student?) funny how i actually like reading again. surely karl marx and plato will kill that urge.

i still feel off-kilter. it still feels good. no word on a new job yet, but i'm looking around to see what's out there. with my checks coming in, i can breathe until something comes along. our garage sales days are over. holly and jenny and me gave it one more shot and then just started giving stuff to the library and such. honestly, i really liked giving things away as much as i liked selling them. there is an idealist left in me yet! it stamps "sucker" on my head in magical disappearing/reappearing ink. only you can see it - i never can.

PROJECT RUNWAY!!! yes, i did slug out on the sofa with junk food and lifetime television for women all last night while letting out little squeals of joy. i still hate santino and think he's a total hack. i still adore the cackling chris march with a fervor. and yes, i watched tim gunn on the daily show as well. you can also know that he really is that sweet! i met him once in seattle and he was a complete charmer. he has excellent posture, a beautiful demeanor, and he smells nice. we heart tim gunn. as for the newbies, i'm still forming an opinion. but i'm sure mary and i will have a three hour tour of analysis over them.

the most disappointing thing i bought at the grocery store:
the organic pancake mix in a whipped cream can. sounds stupid? it was. while the idea of it was hilarious and made me impulse buy, the reality of it was dry and crunchy. the stuff was even worse in the waffle iron. i don't care what shopsmart says - don't bother.

20 August 2009

while talking to mary on the phone...

since i'm so lazy, i considered starting a twitter account that i could update from my phone. then i remembered that i'm also kind of boring and crazy. no one needs a twitter update that i'm sitting around playing with my toes and making animal noises. (yes, i still do that! it's a soothing thing for me.) for now you'll just have to imagine the slightly amped-up things i do with my spare time.

derek and cameron and me have decided that the past tense verb for twitter is now twat. as in, "i twat about myself today." it sounds funnier that way.

so..... what else? i started school again last week. this is my final year before the inevitable getting of the bachelors' degree. so far i have no papers due, less reading than i thought, and long drives filled with george's car karaoke and npr podcasts. my professors seem to understand my overdeveloped sense of humor in a way that lets me get away with comparing international political theory to 80's teen movies. "heathers" is a great metaphor for terrorism, don't you know. que sera sera, i say. speaking of which, i still have to take a frikkin' spanish class for the degree. can i just say now that i really don't like spanish? it beats studying cherokee, but it still blows. (don't ask.) at least i can get it over with in a short-term class and be done with it. as of may i will officially be smart.

my summer job has ended and my new job hunt has begun. i could go back to the old place, but it's not actually an appealing prospect. i'm trying to live on student loans and random cash until i find something new just to avoid getting stuck back in the same rut of drama. if you know of a cool thing i could do in the mornings for money lemme know. another xmas season in the bowels of hell just might break me.

this week i'm concentrating on getting my homework done and helping plan the big theatre party. i painted benches and stuff like a karate kid last weekend until i thought my hand would fall off. my auditions are coming up soon (hey liz!) for the play in october. i'm turning into a turbo-nerd filled with factoids about the death penalty and socio-political crap, as poor linsey found out during lunch yesterday. if i can just get a good turnout and cast people who are all more talented than me, that should take the pressure off of my directing. i like being able to turn people loose and then gently guide them into moving around the stage while speaking up in a louder voice.

my greatest joys of the week:
a new video on cat yodeling! eee!
my pigtails
a "go to hell" notepad

22 July 2009

hooray for pizza day!

today i am going to pig out. last month i sweat so much in the heat here.. and playing with the kids all day... and rehearsing in the back of a warehouse, that i had to go buy new pants. i tried eating extra cookies. i tried just being bloaty. i still lost a pant size. good thing i found jeans on sale, because i HATE going in fitting rooms. all that florescent lighting is kind of creepy.

i think they're wearing me down. (the kids, not the jeans.) i accidentally slept ten hours last night and woke up fully clothed except for one missing sock. yesterday was audition day for their show. the kids and i joke that today "the crying can begin!" and they can drown their sorrows in pizza. my reputation for making little kids cry makes me laugh. they totally don't even take it seriously anymore. how did i become such a pushover?

what i'm wondering today:
does it count for plaid to be your favorite color?

19 July 2009

all in a day's future plans

holy crap, i just read about fritschie getting stabbed! with a screwdriver! by weenies who barely even broke the skin, thank goodness. i shouldn't have laughed, but he really is a good storyteller and i couldn't help it. i know for sure that i am totally not driving past the steak and shake anytime soon. who knew criminals hang out near the ice cream?

in any case, i'm glad he's okay and hope they find the little fuckers who took his phone.

my life is not nearly as exciting as all that. i did see a guy on the biggest unicycle in the world plowing down riverside yesterday, but that's as cool as it gets. summer is mostly filled with camp activities for me. oh sure, the kids can get pretty rambunctious in the heat, but there's no assault with a deadly weapon going on just yet. teaching theatre to little people is a pretty mellow gig to have on the whole. i'll miss this when i have to go looking for a new job.

so next i have to get enrolled in school again. i've decided to go ahead and finish. maybe someday i can be a teacher full time. in the meantime, i'll have to slug through a couple more semesters of bullshit and get it over with. su-hhuuu-hhuuuckage to the max. who ever heard of a teacher who hates going to school? hmmm, the irony is terrific here.

i overcame one of my greatest fears in life recently. i actually went to audition for a musical! no word ever came back, but fuck it. who cares, right? i finally did it. i guess they didn't have enough people come the first time and have scheduled some more auditions, but i've taken a directing job instead. it scares the crap outta me, which is just the sort of challenge i like as of late. out of nowhere, i find myself singing a little song in the car that i made up to summarize what's going on with me these days...

being so uncomfortable
well it's just wonderful
and maybe safety
isn't what i'm going for lately
i wanna be nervous
with every word that you say to me

kinda goofy, but it makes me happy to sing it in traffic. change is always good for me. i find that there is something seductive about unpredictability in life. it keeps me on my toes and always striving to do better. believe me, i know to handle a rut with finesse. totally a creature of habit here, so i need need a shock to the system just to keep things interesting.

the new play i will be directing is just another example of that. it's serious subject matter, for one. it's very specific casting, for two. it's been compared to "the laramie project" many times, for three. ack! i need my big ego and my eddie izzard advice to really kick in on this project. no problem... mary pumped me back up on the phone this morning and now i think i can do it. or rather, as i like to say when it comes to things that eventually drive me bonkers, "how hard can it be, right?" that's the phrase that normally invokes giggles out of derek.

something tells me that i have enough routine and comfort in my life now. i am incomplete without a touch of freaking out going on from day to day. wheeeee!!!

new albums i've gotten lately:
depeche mode
regina spektor
dirty projectors

17 June 2009

nuwsed items... ren and stimpy's stimulus plan

why have i been too busy to write? we've been spending money! we've become shopaholics! throwing caution to the wind, we've been nesting and making purchases to enjoy.

in the past month, i've gotten some new shelves for the house, a fluffy skirt or two, a fabulous stacking fridge and freezer that fit way better in my kitchen, and even a bicycle! the bike is a really big deal for me. i'm finally overcoming my fear of being on two wheels again by riding around town on a vintage sears "free spirit" model with a lovely devil bike horn. i still need to go pick up a groovy wicker basket to complete the look. then i can whoosh about with my new ipod touch. derek was so jealous i got home one as well.

we also got a new scooter for derek! it's a beautiful silver 150, and if you ask him nicely, we might get him to post some photos of his new ride. his scooty scoot (and new helmet) even matches my car - tee hee. like matching phone numbers wasn't enough, right? i might even make him take some shots of our new dining table and chairs. they are tres chic and teeny tiny. wow, we're almost like real adults, not even eating on the coffee table all the time. now i can bake in my new silicone bakeware (without even being sad) and serve it up all proper-like.

oh, and of course i've been indulging my need for new art. my collection has developed quite nicely. we've gotten some great original pieces by local artists for a steal. not only that, but we've been creating art with some metal grating pieces on the wall, invisible cords, and some of our favorite postcards.

how on earth can we afford all this terrific stuff? one word: USED. thanks to the power of strategic trading, thrift stores, refurb items, garage sales, and the ever-holy craigslist, it really is still possible to get out there and shop. in fact, it's our responsibility as cogs in the economic system. i like getting little doodads for the house, so i see what i need and what's out there. craigslist has blissfully made it possible for me to scavenge-shop without having to drive around in the summer heat, but i've also been keeping my eyes peeled when i'm out there.

the even better part? we've sold a ton of items, too. holly and jenny and me have been doing the garage sale thing when we have time. derek and i have been selling stuff online - so more buig ups to craigslist and other places. we've been embracing the cycle of life; that is, in terms of stuff. trash and treasure, eh? yessirree! i never knew i could really have this much space in my closet!

the thing about culling your stuff is that you realize what you need. you think about what you use on a regular basis. you see what you're holding on to out of guilt or obligation. you forget why you loved that thing all over the country. there are moments when you cling to your possessions screaming " but i might NEED it again!" when the terror subsides, you have the clarity to invite someone else over to look over it all with you and make decisions about what truly belongs in your life.

one friend is honest enough to say "your snappy shirts are dead and you need to let them go." another person remarks on how open your house is now. someone remarks that they're reorganizing and need a way to get all those cords under control, so you gift them your bag of flex-tubing (which you got for free anyway) so they can wrap them all up in a neat row.

sure sure sure - some things are going to stay in your house anyway. do you need all that stationery? hell no, but you at least promise to stop buying any more until you make a dent in what you have. should anyone own that many **insert your silly penchant here** in their lives? probably not, but you just donated recycled or donated every old magazine in your living room, so it's okay to indulge a bit.

a funny thing happens after all this: getting rid of what you don't need or want becomes easier. you think about how happy it would make someone ELSE. you can give it away. you can trade with your peeps. you can sell it. no matter what you do, it's moved on in the circle and been recycled to better place. it's both economical and green, so you feel good about taking a bite outta your hoarding habits. then you can go out and get a few used items and supplies for creating in your daily treasure hunt for fun, too!

believe me, i would much rather have a new/used (nuwsed?) silicone cupcake pan than an old pile of dusty action figures. and i think there are people out there who are happy to make the trade with me.

what else is of interest this month:
a new gig - i finally quit my old job! eee!