Tuesday, December 31, 2002

The Case for Drinking (All Together Now: In Moderation!) From today's NYT: In a study of more than 80,000 American women, those who drank moderately had only half the heart attack risk of those who did not drink at all, even if they were slim, did not smoke and exercised daily. Moderate drinking was about as good for the heart as an hour of exercise a day. Not drinking at all was as bad for the heart as morbid obesity.

Wow! So to be as healthy as I can be, I need to get sloshed every day (two drinks are plenty; I'm a cheap date). Tonight, New Year's Eve, I will drink enough to be the healthiest ever!

Monday, December 30, 2002

Hello everyone. I am back at work. This morning was the first time I've woken up before 9 in many days, it seems. I had a great Christmas down in Jersey with my folks; it was very brief and relaxing. It even snowed on Christmas (after raining most of the day). P's mom was with us, and she seemed to really enjoy herself, chatting warmly with my parents and my aunt. Her presence meant two extra dogs for a total of 6 in my parents' small house.

So, the loot: I gave my sister an airbrushed tank top with her name on it, from the airbrushing place in the mall. I also made her and my mom scarves I had knit. Dad got a woodworking book and P got an obscure Indian cookbook. I got a bread machine, something I never thought I'd have a use for, but now that there's two kids in my house it will be worth it. We made two loaves already and they were good but seemed to be missing something; they were very one-note. I'm wondering if it has to do with the way they're baked. You can set it to just prepare the dough for you. We're going to try different recipes.

After Christmas P took his mom back home and I went to Brooklyn with S and S. We had a nice relaxing time. Watched the extended Fellowship of the Rings, which is even better than the theatrical version, with more character development and exposition; the next night we saw the Two Towers, also fantastic and great. We managed to do a little shopping in Manhattan. Since I'm still on my quest for go-go boots, we went to Screaming Mimi's, where Drew Barrymore was picking out a big pile of threads. S and I were all excited but playing it supercool, not asking for an autograph and trying not to stare at her. She was cute and looked like a normal person, and seemed to be shopping alone (no friends and/or bodyguards). At one point she got a call from her honey in the Strokes. She said something like "Good morning, sleepyhead!" It was 4 in the afternoon. Rock stars, man. Anyway, no go-go boots were to be had for my twisted little feet.

We also wandered onto Canal Street. Canal Jean Co. is closing; the end of an era. It was the cool punk place to get cheap threads in the 80s; but that was back when SoHo was where actual artists lived and showed their work, and Canal was mostly part of Chinatown. Now Canal Jeans faces a huge Old Navy store. At Canal I scored a baby blue t-shirt, two belts, and two large vintage curtains that I hope to make into a dress and a tablecloth.

It was nice to be in Brooklyn sans kids and dog. It was rough to come back to an ailing P, impending financial disaster, and an unshoveled sidewalk on Saturday. I solved the one thing I could, clearing the whole sidewalk in one massive push yesterday. I'm quite sore today. And hung over from the freedom.

Monday, December 23, 2002

I had a very hectic weekend. It was somewhat fun, but stressful, like every Christmas-time ever. Me, P, sister and bro-in-law all drove up to Laconia NH to have a little Christmas with the Grandparents. G'dad has Alzheimer's, and he's not doing too good, but he's still healthy (uh... except for his brain). He didn't buy anyone any presents, of course. The lo-jack attached to his ankle prevents him from leaving his floor of the nursing home. But he did give his wife a sweet card, one of those cards where some guy at a desk in Indiana writes the sentiment in verse for you. He had signed it, oddly, "April 30," a date which has no significance that we know of. Interesting.

We ducked out when we were all done with presents and a 1:30 p.m. "dinner" in order to go to Funspot. It's a huge video game palace and bowling alley and bar. We headed right upstairs to the massive vintage video game palace: rows of original Star Wars, Rampage, Paperboy, Asteroids, Mappy, Burgertime, all the Pac-Man variants, rows of pinball machines spanning the last 30 years... P hated it there but wasn't too jerky about wanting to leave well before me, S and S, and my dad wanted to. Just like at Six Flags, it was great to see my dad enjoying some kid-like things with me. He was amazed that we could all race each other at those linked racing-game things, and then when we played he actually won. The four of us (P was, at this point, napping in the car) had a mini-tournament at the air-hockey tables and I won. Ha.

Saturday night we saw some of the Fawns and SFTD (see the Living Rockumentary at left). I always end up feeling happy and energized when I see them. Such good stuff. At the end of the Fawns set they brought up a few more people to form a local musician Supergroup onstage to sing the "Merry Christmas" song by the Waitresses.

Sunday was last-minute shopping day. I got almost everything downtown, Shopping Locally as the bumper stickers tell me to, but I had to go to the mall for the last thing on my list. It was horribly packed full of cranky people. I got lucky and found someone getting into her car before anyone else had camped out waiting for the space.

Tonight will be a flurry of wrapping and packing, and tomorrow morning I'm off to New Jersey by way of Brooklyn. Blogging will be sporadic during this time; we appreciate your patience.
Leader of 'The Clash' Is Dead at 50 R.I.P. Joe Strummer. So fuckin' sad.

Friday, December 20, 2002

Visiting Korea, but really really wish you were at Disney World instead? Get yourself to Seoulland! Besides the incredible, I-can't-believe-Disney-hasn't-yet-sued-them-yet "Space Ship Earth" knockoff, there are many fun rides your family can enjoy, like this carousel of musical instruments:

And don't miss "Rock N Roll," where riders "Spin and spin back and forth like a sieve-frame of a squirrel!"

Go to Seoulland's website for more. Open nature, exciting day!

Thursday, December 19, 2002

poopboy.swf This link is blogged especially for P.
My shoulders and right arm are very stiff and sore today, from overdoing it the past two days. Not from lifting weights or doing yoga, but from knitting. I am such a girl. Anyway, I just got 15 minutes of accupressure (for $15) from a person who brings her massage table to a quiet spot in our office. She wasn't hard enough. It felt really nice, but it wasn't theraputic like I wanted. I told her to go harder, but she said, "well, okay, but I don't want to kill you," and then didn't increase the pressure at all. I wanted to be all, "harder! HARDER! Dammit, drill it into me! NOW!" but that seemed inappropriate.
Here you go: a bear that shits prime numbers. This is what makes the web great.

Wednesday, December 18, 2002

Sorry no blog yesterday; I had to go to NYC for one of those half-an-hour-long presentations. It was largely uneventful, and I got home early enough to do some Christmas shopping at the mall. I do so much better at the mall when I'm alone. Then I came home and knit while watching 24. I assumed Buffy was a rerun as it has been for three weeks, but maybe I missed a new one. Whatever.

Today we got our office Holiday Gifts. This year instead of a mousepad or a pen we got polar fleece jackets. And of course, even though the majority of people in the office are women, they're all in men's sizes. I have a small and it's enormous on me. It would probably be a women's size 14 or 16. The sleeves engulf my hands. I will never wear this outside of this building. The company logo embroidered on the breast would have already ruled that out. But still.

The one advantage fat people have is that all of the free t-shirts that companies send out to their "media partners" are always, by default, sixe XL. It's like, Here, fatty! Your job requires you to sit in front of a computer all day so you must be quite corpulent. And we wouldn't want to offend you by sending you a shirt that may possibly be a little tight around your protruding belly. Instead, we'll make our shirts so big that 90 percent of the people who get them will immediately cut them up for rags or donate them to the Salvation Army. We don't care.

Monday, December 16, 2002

GirlHacker's Random Log Girlhacker presents a list of outlet stores online. Nice.
How to Good-Bye Depression: If You Constrict Anus 100 Times Everyday. Malarkey? or Effective Way? That's the name of a real book, a book that should be on everyone's Christmas list this year. Why, just read what the author has to say (from the book's amazon.com page), and I'm sure you'll agree that you can't afford to not get it:

I think constricting anus 100 times and denting navel 100 times in succession everyday is effective to good-bye depression and take back youth. You can do so at a boring meeting or in a subway. I have known a 70-year-old man who has practiced it for 20 years. As a result, he has a good complexion and has grown 20 years younger. His eyes sparkle. He is full of vigor, happiness and joy. He has neither complained nor born a grudge under any circumstance. Furthermore, he can make #### three times in succession without drawing out.

In addition, he also can have burned a strong, beautiful fire within his abdomen. It can burn out the dirty stickiness of his body, release his immaterial fiber or third attention, which has been confined to his stickiness. Then, he can shoot out his immaterial fiber or third attention to an object, concentrate on it and attain happy lucky feeling through the success of concentration.

If you don't know concentration, which gives you peculiar pleasure, your life looks like hell.

Friday, December 13, 2002

Different boots, but still lovely Now, these chunky 70's LL Bean boots, I might actually bid on. It's got a few days for the price to go really high so I'm going to wait.

By the eBay way, I only have one bid for my five items I put up last Sunday. I thought I had this ebay thing down, but I clearly don't. I have only ever sold one piece of clothing successfully (a Custo-Barcelona shirt; do a search to see how popular these are) and I've tried selling like five things.
I just looked at the list of phrases people searched for to get to my blog and besides the usual (aunt panties, used teen panties, persuasive seat belt arguments) there's one that's s____ w____ d____, with the S and D being my sister and me's first names and the W being my last name. Kind of creepy. Whoever searched for that clearly got to the right place. Some long-lost schoolmate? My step-kid reading all the stuff I've been writing about her (a sobering thought)? A crazy ex-boyfriend stalker? Drop me a line, mystery person.
Japan loves American culture, spending thousands on crap like vintage sneakers and Levis. America loves Japanese culture, endlessly emailing around links to the latest inscrutible piece of flash animation and loving kid stuff like Yu-Gi-Oh and Pokeman, not to mention sushi (guilty). My point: America and Japan should go have sex somewhere. They clearly have big crushes on each other.

Thursday, December 12, 2002

my dream boots. If you want to get me something for Christmas, here it is. But forget it, they probably won't fit my monster feet, and the bidding's already up to $40. If you ever see any boots like these, knee-high and lace-up, around a size 8, buy them!

Wednesday, December 11, 2002

This morning at the bakery where I always get my sweet carbo treat (muffin or danish or slice of kuchen) the nerd behind the counter tried to out me as a co-nerd. He brazenly came right out and asked me: "So, the new Star Trek movie is coming out this Friday..." Expecting me to say, "Oh yeah, can't wait to see it!" Expecting me to geek out with him, a total stranger! Why does he assume I'm a fellow nerd? It's almost insulting. Anyway, I said something like, "Oh, I've kind of given up on Star Trek. I haven't seen any of the recent movies." Which is true. I felt bad for dissing him like that so I said, "Now, Lord of the Rings - THAT I'm looking forward to!" Then I walked out, as the other people on line started talking about how much they wanted to see it, too. Take that, nerd-boy!

Tuesday, December 10, 2002

A gave us her Christmas list a couple of weeks ago but T just compiled hers yesterday. In the middle of the list is the same thing she always asks for: "A kitten in a basket with a bow on its head. You never seem to get me what I really want." She is funny.

The first thing on her list, though, is underlined and in all-caps: A TRAIN TICKET HOME FOR NEW YEAR'S. By "home" she means back north, where her mom used to live and her friends still do. I understand that she calls it home because that's what it's always been, and there's no better word for it, but it still hurts a little, and it hurts P more. Truly, her only home right now is the one here with us. But what can you do? Tell her, "change your nomenclature, please, for it hurts our feelings"?

It's still up in the air whether or not P will let her go "home" for New Year's. We suspect she wants to go be with her boyfriend at a party Without an Adult Present, which is a no-no in my book for a 14-year-old. But she will be so unhappy if she doesn't go that P might cave. I don't know what the right thing to do is. As usual.

Monday, December 09, 2002

I had a very fun weekend. Saturday we zoomed down to Brooklyn, getting there around 2:00. we spent the afternoon eating bagels and playing MonkeyBall. Baby Henry made an appearance, and I was allowed to hold him for quite a while. He mainly slept as I did the gentle swaying-back-and-forth motion those creatures enjoy. I was trying to keep a hand clamped over his arms because he kept doing this startle reflex thing, where his whole body would jerk because he thought he was falling. I still have those horrible dreams where I'm falling and I jerk violently awake. Clearly I need someone to bundle me. Anyway, eventually I had to switch arms and he woke up. It takes a lot of effort to calm a crying newborn. After just a minute or two of high-impact lifting, jogging, and swinging, I had to hand him over to a professional. When he was distracted enough to stop cyring for a few seconds he'd open up his big eyes very wide and look all around with an amazed expression.

We went to Fiamma's 30th birthday party, held in her new and newly painted alcove studio apartment. She painted the entire place; the bathroom had been painted black by the previous tenant. Crazy. It was a potluck and someone had made perogis from scratch. Damn those are good. Poles really know how to eat in the winter. I mingled a little but spent most of the time dancing with them what brought me. It's too bad, because a couple of them - a senior editor at Allure, and a sculptor - really interested me, but we were all in light mingle-mode. Around 11:30 a few of us went over to the Brooklyn Inn to meet our pal JL. S and S crapped out due to illness and tiredness, and I barely made it myself, so it was just Tricia and me and P. Eventually T's new beau showed up; he had been enticed by T's promises of hanging out with a Famous Author. Cute. Eventually J showed, and then F. I sipped Scotch to stop my emerging cough (it worked very well). J and P got some quality time together.

By the time we got back to S's that night I was so tired I was afraid to fall asleep lest my heart stopped. It's been a while since I let myself get that tired. It was kind of fun, actually. Sunday we only had time for brunch at Two Boots before P and I had to drive back up north. Brooklyn in the hiz-ouse.
Random site of the day: A list of Disabled Recording Artists

Sunday, December 08, 2002

I just put s'more stuff up on eBay. My user name is debway if you want to take a gander. The two cool things I'm selling are some nice size 8 NineWest pumps that are too narrow for my be-bunioned feet (I bought them at a church rummage sale without trying them on), and a large orange Calvin Klein peasant blouse that looked smaller than it is when I bought it at a tag sale.

Friday, December 06, 2002

I had an odd dream last night. Somehow a young woman had tracked me down, thinking I was some expert on "The Happiest Millionaire" (a live-action Disney movie from the 1960s I've never seen), and she kept following me and asking me questions I couldn't answer. Meanwhile I'm wandering through this vaguely-European-looking street full of shabby apartments. I go in one and up the stairs to see my sis's friend, Alice, who has a young baby. Unfortunately he was just put down for a nap so I can't see him right now. A shows me where he's sleeping: he's inside a shoebox, packed into a larger box with smaller boxes and blocks of styrofoam on all sides, and then there's some sort of cover with more blocks on top, and the whole thing is in this round tub like an antique washer. A seemed weary. I figured the crazy packing was to keep the baby from crying, or at least to muffle his cries for the benefit of the adults. That's all I remember.

Thursday, December 05, 2002

Guess what I'm wearing today?


I am loving it. They're safely hidden under my jeans and they have been keeping my calves toasty all day. They're borrowed from T's dance stuff, so they're black and relatively sleek. In the 80s the high-fashion legwarmers were huge and cabled and lumpy. I might have the guts to wear these with a skirt, even. I have plans to try some crazy fashion action at F's party this weekend.

I said "seriously" a lot in my previous post. How about that.
I didn't go. I pulled the old "I'm sick" crap-put lie, which I never do because I have a very guilty conscience. But seriously, I've been feeling kind of sick all week, and spending the whole day on a train stuck in the snow would only make me sicker. Seriously, the city is supposed to get 6 to 8 inches today. Anyway, I'm at work now; I felt too guilty to take an entire sick day when I'm not actually sick, so I told my manager that after I slept some more and had some tea I felt better (which is true, but then again that's true every morning). Boss lady was skeptical. She espied me at my cube and came over to ask me what I was doing here. I told her I felt sick this morning. I don't think she believed me. I said I called one of the guys who was going and he said "well, I don't know when I'll see you again, the snow is supposed to be horrible." Seriously, they might end up spending the night there, at some $300-a-night hotel. For a one-hour presentation. Boss Lady responded, though, that she heard the city wasn't going to get nearly that much, that the 6-to-8 figure was just "for the coast." Of course NYC is on the coast... but I let it drop.

Wednesday, December 04, 2002

So it turns out I'm going to be in NYC all day tomorrow. Just found out an hour ago. We're leaving here at 8:15 tomorrow morning, and taking the train because it's supposed to snow; we'll hopefully catch the 5:45 out of the city. We're going for a one-hour-long presentation on an upcoming movie (a good one, otherwise I'd be pissed about having to go). I'm going with three older men from the office. They're pretty fun, the kind who like to have expensive lunches and take the time to shop in artsy bookstores and music shops (we have two hours to kill before the presentation). Sometimes I look at my life and I think, who the hell is this person? I don't feel like the kind of girl who must travel six hours to attend an important and exclusive meeting thrown by a major entertainment company, or who flies to L.A. to get some "face time" with other people in the company, but I guess I am. Weird.
ThinkGeek :: Midas Remote Control Watch This may be the perfect holiday gift for my dad, who has said he doesn't want anything this year. It's small, tech-y, and both silly and useful: it's a watch that's also a universal remote control, so he can secretly change the channel at his friends' houses. It might be too stylish, though.
www.mnftiu.cc | get your war on | page seventeen A new Get Your War On (from last week, 'cause I'm slow) mostly about the insanity of hiring Kissinger to investigate ANYTHING. FYI, Mark Bingham was the gay guy who helped thwart the hijackers and crash Flight 93 before it hit DC on Sept. 11 (I had to google him to refresh my memory).
Wal-Mart Values Yet another reason to not buy at Wal-Mart; they're being sued by 7 female employees who've been discriminated against because of their gender. Article contains this rather alarming factoid: Four out of ten American women visit one of Wal-Mart's stores weekly.

Reader, I was almost one of those four yesterday, in order to buy the cheapest possible gloves for my step-children. But I did not cave in. The kids are still gloveless, but my convictions are intact. I'll have to buy them gloves at some slightly-less-loathesome giant chain store like CVS or Target.

Tuesday, December 03, 2002

So i tried to post earlier but Blogger was down. Stupid free software. I will evenutally move to MT someday.

I had a very vege-ful Thanksgiving holiday. We cooked and hosted at our house; I let P deal with the bird and I made a blueberry pie and some butternut squash mash. We're still eating turkey (for lunch I had some of the turkey soup we made last night). Mainly what I did for four days is sit around, eat, and watch movies. What I saw:

Raising Arizona
Lost in America
The Virgin Suicides
three episodes of Buffy
Harry Potter (the new one; we actually left the house for that one)
Leon (The Professional)
the last half hour of Stepmom

I feel like there were even more but it's all a blur now. I had seen all of the flicks before except for the Virgin Suicides, which I liked. All the others were chosen by P except for The Professional, which T and A seemed to like a lot, possibly because it stars a 12-year-old Natalie Portman (the three of us agree that she's angelically beautiful).

Anyway. More regular bloggin' to come.

Sunday, December 01, 2002

Here's some people on the top of the fire tower at the top of Mt. Tom. It's my sister and her husband. Just so you know. P is trying to teach me how to upload images to my website and this time I'm writing everything down. My goal today is to put a buttload of stuff up on eBay.