Tuesday, June 28, 2005

happy birthday, Travis!

If I could give you a website for your comics I would, but I can't, because I don't know how to do that sort of stuff. So instead I'll just wish you a happy birthday and say thanks a bunch for all the new music and comics you sent me. I can't promise I won't stop listening to Justin Timberlake, but I will listen to more Sleater-Kinney.

Sunday, June 26, 2005

I miss my Dad

If my Dad were still alive, he'd be 61 today. It was my Dad who inspired my quirky sense of humor and love of slapstick. I also, unfortunately, got my temper from him. Even though Dad had a knack for being goofy it was never a good idea to laugh at him when he lost his temper, no matter how funny it was. And even worse than laughing at him would be to tell him to "calm down." I learned that one the hard way. I guess because he knew I shared in the love of all things rage-like he would frequently fly off the handle when it was just the two of us. It was kind of like two kindred spirits of suppressed anger seeking comfort in each other's company. I liked to stomp up stairs, he liked to throw tools. Ahhh, the magic of family.

One of my favorite stories to tell about my Dad is the one where we were driving to the grocery store to pick something up for my Mom. I was living at home right after college, so my relationship with my parents was a little strange, but I still liked hanging out with my Dad, especially if he was just looking for company on a ride and I got to control the radio. He had finally stopped driving the Dodge Ram van (yes, it had carpet inside, even on the walls) and was cruising down the streets with class in his fairly new Grand Marquis. We headed down the long street of Hyde Park Ave. and as I was obsessively changing the radio stations I noticed my Dad getting upset about something. I thought it was my failure to pick and stick with something on the radio, but his increasing blood pressure was caused by two young hoodlums on a small worn down motorbike. They were both probably about 12 years old and were driving about 10 miles per hour down the middle of the street. Obviously this made Dad mad for a number of reasons, all of which he told me all about: first of all, these kids weren't even old enough to be driving that thing, second, the vehicle was unregistered third, it was unsafe for them and for other drivers and fourth, they were going way too slow for his liking. Dad started beeping and they ignored him. So he really laid on the horn, which sadly resulted in the moped going even slower. These kids obviously didn't know who they were messing with. A vigilante in a giant green car meant business; Dad rolled down his window and told them to get the hell out of the way, the kids laughed, swerved and gave him the finger. This made Dad furious, the only way to deal with these bad seeds now was clear... it was time to scare the crap out of them. I hadn't been driven around in the Grand Marquis too often before that day, but it was on that day I realized that 8 cylinders is a whole lot of car, more car than a moped can handle. Good thing those kids were thinking ahead and were able to get next to the car instead of under it. But these 12 year olds were fearless and even though they had almost been run down they had enough balls to take out a key and ran it down the entire passenger's side of the Grand Marquis as they rode next to us. I made eye contact with them and shook my head in disbelief, somehow trying to side with Dad, yet give them some kind of warning to back off, please, for the love of god, back off. This was one of the three times in my life I uttered the words "calm down" to Dad. I probably squeaked them out and they weren't even audible, but I felt like I had a civic duty to say something. I looked over at Dad and the expression on his face made me hope that he hadn't heard me after all. I decided that no matter what happened at that point, I would keep my mouth shut.
As the kids came closer to the car, Dad would swerve towards them, trying to run them off the road and on to the sidewalk, the kids would get on the sidewalk for a minute, then back onto the road to torment the Grand Marquis with the key. This went on for a few minutes, the kids would get closer to the car, Dad would get closer to the kids, a key would come out... you get the picture.
We finally came to the stretch of the road with the police station, so we were soon followed by flashing lights and sirens. I breathed a sigh of relief as I hunched over in the seat, trying to look like I had nothing to do with any of this. We ended up pulling over across the street from McDonald's where a barefoot woman with curlers in her hair came running out, shouting "I saw the whole thing! He totally tried to kill those kids! I saw it! He was gonna run 'em down!" Apparently we had drawn all sorts of attention in Clearly Square, even from crazy people who should have been wearing shoes while dining on a Big Mac. The police officer told her to step aside as Dad calmly rolled down his window. I was certain that Dad was going to jail and I would have to take the bus home with this barefooted bitch who was saying my father was a killer. The police officer asked what the problem was and Dad replied in his best Boston accent,"These kids ahh bein' ahhhhsholes." I'm not sure why this happened, but that was all Dad had to say, the officer took the kids and the moped away and Dad and I went to the store.

We never talked about the incident again, because I know it wasn't one of my Dad's proudest moments, but also because there was no need, I understood. I told my Mom about it after Dad passed away, she didn't believe me.

I miss you, Dad.

Saturday, June 25, 2005

photo friday - orange

I entered this photo for this week's challenge.
the Pumpkin King
If you want to check out about 500 other orange photos you can go here.

Friday, June 24, 2005

I'm not that into your germs

Hey you, yeah, you with the cold,
If I give you the box of tissues from my desk I'm giving it to you for good. Please enjoy them down to a nub. I want you to fill each and every tissue with your own phlegm, but I don't want to be a part of it.
Not only was it obvious that you needed a whole box, but I was tired of you popping your snotty face in and out of my cube EVERY time you needed a tissue. I'm not sure why you couldn't take more than one tissue at a time or better yet, go up one flight of stairs to get your own box, because the supply room has many boxes of tissues for the taking. That's right, they're FREE! But when I gave you that box it wasn't a loaner for you to get all germy with and then return it half full, it was yours for keeps.

Thursday, June 23, 2005


Last Saturday I met up with Wil and Richard and was treated to a breezy ride in Wil's new convertible. It's not a new car, but it's new to Wil, and fun for me, because I had never been in a convertible before. We drove over to the Castro to check out Alex's new work digs and then get some dinner. Richard let me sit in the front seat for the ride into the city, which was very nice of him. I felt quite sassy with my hair blowing in the wind. When we got to the Castro Wil had a milestone moment with his new car... it's very first time parked on a steep hill. I felt honored to be a part of all the glory.

We stopped by For Your Eyes Only (feel free to hate me if you have that James Bond song stuck in your head now) to visit Alex and tried on lots of fancy eyewear. Alex still had about an hour of work left so Wil, Richard and I headed over to Metro City Bar for some margaritas and people watching. If you're ever in the Castro just remember that the Metro has the best seats on the patio to see stuff like this.

But beware of anyone there wearing a t-shirt that says "Rimming is the shit."

Alex eventually joined us, right in time for the Finlandia promotion they were doing that night. After filling out index cards with fake names and addresses we all got free tank tops, buttons that light up and tiny little bottles of flavored vodka. We also met a guy named Ira who was there because his lady friend worked for Finlandia. I let him use my zoom lens to check out other ladies (not ones with goatees) in the street while he told me all about his girlfriend being sunburned. We finally got to meet his girlfriend, who immediately revealed to us that Ira's nickname for her is CCT, Candy Cane Tits. Ira explained that this was because her boobs and pelvic area didn't get burnt, but everything else did. See, get it, Candy Cane Tits? ha ha ha. She never told us her real name, so I guess if I ever run into her again I'll just have to ignore her.

We finally bid farewell to Ira and CCT, gathered up our free Finlandia crap and walked over to Catch to have a very trendy and delicious dinner. They have a piano player there who sits in this little crow's nest type of thing and plays some tunes on a baby grand. I actually spent a fair amount of time feeling bad for him, he looked really cramped up there. That and he had leather pants on, but he did that to himself.

Even though it was a little chilly we took a drive up to Twin Peaks with the top down and watched the sunset.

I will attest that riding in the front seat of a car with no top is much less windy than riding in the back, but the back seat has it's own perks, it's where you can see how crazy you look with your hair blowing in the breeze.

Saturday, June 18, 2005

someone help me

Please tell me that I cannot get another cat. Even if he's the cutest thing ever. Even though he looks just like a mini-Zach and likes to pet my face in the same exact way Zach does. Even if he came right over to me and clawed his way up my leg so I would pet him. Even if he was found in a shoe box in downtown Oakland, therefore making him a hip and trendy urban cat.
Please tell me that I don't need this kitten.

Friday, June 17, 2005

what Costco is NOT good for

I heart Costco. I think it's one of the coolest places to go shopping. Where else can you get 46 ounces of salsa in a two pack, paper towels to last you a millennium and a mattress pad all at the same time? But I have to draw the line somewhere. Alex went to Costco on Monday without me and got some good stuff, but mixed in with that good stuff was a multi-pack of Pringles. That's six giant cans of Pringles joined together by a mess of shrink wrap. I think Alex might love Pringles more than I love Costco. I don't love Pringles, but they are a snack food so I'll eat them if they're around. Pringles are weird though, they aren't potato chips, they're potato crisps, which to me taste like someone made a bunch of instant potatoes, formed them into these wafer things, baked them up and slid them into a can. And I think that getting chips from a can is wrong, but not as wrong as getting Cheetos or Funyuns from a can. (Note to society - please stop trying to drink or inhale your solids, there are plenty of snacks for everyone, no need to rush.) But my big problem with Pringles is that there's nothing easier than opening the pantry door, grabbing a tube of chips and ripping off that plastic lid. What could be more satisfying and take less effort than getting home from long commute and shoving a bunch of Pringles in your face?

Alex bought this massive quantity of potato crisps on Monday, it's now Friday morning and there are only three cans left. This can't be good.

Wednesday, June 15, 2005

it's only Wednesday

Did you ever have a dream that it was the weekend and you wake up all excited that it's Saturday but then reality gives you a swift kick in the pants and tells you to get dressed for work because it's really only Wednesday?

The week after a vacation is the most unfun week. What makes it even harder to stay motivated is my boss being out for most of the week. It's a recipe for disaster.

The one thing that does kick ass about this week is that Alex started his new jobs. Two part time jobs in San Francisco, jobs where people call him Doctor. I think that's so crazy, I never imagined I would be married to a doctor. Maybe it's time to quit my job and start volunteering with some society women and taking tea with the neighborhood association ladies. Or do spouses of optometrists not do that sort of thing?

Monday, June 13, 2005

the juice is on the loose

My trip to Boston was wicked pissah.

We kicked off our week long trip with a drive down to Cape Cod for my cousin's wedding. The weather was beautiful and there was never a dull moment during the car ride, because both my mother and Nana were in the back seat. At one point Nana talked about someone who retired with a 'silver hand,' but what she really meant to say was 'golden parachute' and eventually my mother was all about correcting her... once she figured out what a silver hand was supposed to be. I think that gives you a pretty good idea of how that portion of the trip went. After a little over an hour of listening to Nana's awesome Boston accent (mine = my-uhn, fire = fi-ahhh, etc.) we met up with 9 other relatives at the hotel and proceeded to head out to the 99 for a dazzling meal of burgers and fries. I like hanging out with my family every once in awhile, even if it means we have to frequent the likes of Applebees from time to time. Eventually we all went back to the hotel to get ready for the wedding and that's when things took a turn for the worse. I put on my new blouse. I had never done the "sit down" test in the dressing room before I purchased. Bad move. It turned out the shirt liked to spontaneously slide open and slip off my shoulders once I was seated. Luckily I was able to get all MacGyver on it's ass and realized that two small, well placed diamond earrings would prevent any family members from getting a flash of my tragically un-hip bra. You see, it was important that I looked my best for this wedding because not only was it was at a high falootin' golf club on the Cape, but O.J. Simpson would be attending. Doesn't everyone want to look their best for the Juice?
My cousin Brian was kind enough to catch this once in a lifetime moment of Alex and I dancing while the gloveless O.J. serenaded the crowd with his very own version of "It's a Wonderful World."

If that picture doesn't make you weak in the knees then you might want to check this out.

yes, my friends, a chocolate fountain. There was something so disturbing yet compelling about it. I didn't eat anything from the fountain, but I shoved plenty of stuff in there. That's when I decided that I want that to be my job, chocolate fountain dipper. Get a stick, stab something, put it under running chocolate and then serve it on a plate. Voila. All I could think of was Augustus Gloop, I got really excited for the new Willie Wonka movie.

Alex and I (along with my Mom) left the Cape on Sunday, dropped Nana off and moved on to our New Hampshire portion of the visit, which was largely spent playing Hot Potato with my nephew Matt. I'm not sure exactly what the rules are for Hot Potato, but it involved me sitting in one place and pretending various items were Hot Potatoes, once it got away from me Matt would find the item and return it. Oh sure, I know what you're thinking, Hot Potato sounds like fun and you wish you could play it right away, but let me tell you, it doesn't always end well. Matt got too excited somewhere along the way and woke up the next day with some sort of playtime hangover. If you and your pals every decided to hunker down for a round of Hot Potato heed my warning, please remember to take it slow, it's just too damn exciting for some people. Our playtime with Matt only brought on a morning filled with a groggy haze of nausea followed by many sippy cups of water and books to be read aloud. By the end of the day though we saw the return of Matt's rosy cheeks and a smile on his face. It was a miraculous journey of a toddler who started his day clammy, wan and barely able to move end his day by transforming into an eating machine able to hold down watermelon, four whole mini bagels and a half sleeve of crackers while asking when we would play Hot Potato again. Behold, the wonders of Carb Boy as he flies to his little sister.

After our 3 day stint in NH we headed back to Boston where Alex and I parted ways with my Ma and took a mini vacation, no family allowed. We stayed at the Royal Sonesta and took advantage of everything included in the price of the hotel. We made up for not taking any getaways for the past 2 years by spending our first day there swimming, using the hot tub, getting free ice cream, taking a free boat ride on the Charles, dinner in the hotel restaurant and watching some HBO. I love hotels. We stayed there for 2 nights and also did touristy things like shopping for things we don't need and visit to the Museum of Science. The butterfly exhibit there was small, but worth the price of admission.
We also got to see Lisa and Ben who were having a yard sale and are closing on their new house today, so to them I say Mazel Tov!

Now I'm back to the regular life of working for a living and cleaning up the trail of ants leading to the cat food. You know, the usual.

God, I miss O.J.

Thursday, June 02, 2005

I am so out of here

Tomorrow morning Alex and I head out to the land where leaves change color in the fall, snow comes down in the winter and thunderstorms happen in the summer. I'm visiting Boston for a wedding, but I'm staying a whole week for the thunderstorms (and to see my sister and her kick ass family).

I've been so stressed out all week trying to finish up everything at work, cleaning up after 9 days of house guests, saying goodbye to some friends who are leaving the state for good and then for some reason I put all this pressure on myself to find some fabulous outfit for this wedding on Saturday. Truth be told I don't really care what I wear, but I can't wear any of my old clothes because I've gained over 10 pounds since October... sitting around feeling sorry for myself and my busted vestibular system. look out, here comes the whaaaaa-mbulance.

I went shopping today at Anthropologie which is actually a store for wealthy, tall, sultry, anorexic ladies, but I gave it a shot anyways. The store itself is pleasant enough to be in and the staff is very attentive to customers who are using the dressing rooms. I'm not used to that kind of attention and it makes me a little uncomfortable. I think that when I'm trying stuff on instead of the gracious employee asking me "How's it going in there?" or "do you need a smaller size?" she might want to try "How's your low self esteem doing?" or "Are you feeling fat and dumpy enough yet?" Buying clothes for a specific event at the last minute never really pans out, does it?

So off to Boston I go, with a smile on my face and song in my heart, for I am now about to pack way too many clothes so I can try them all on everyday and annoy Alex by wailing out "does this make me look faaaaaat?"