Wednesday, December 31, 2008

2009 Resolutions

I wrote these about a month ago and never actually posted them, so here goes.

I will stop wasting my energy/anger on shitty people. Instead, I will remember to feel sorry for them.

I will remind myself how lucky I am to have un-superficial relationships.

I will allow myself to make up words like "un-superficial" even if it makes me a crappier editor.

I will keep my options open...

I will read my NarAnon book daily.

I will think about getting back into pilates so I can someday walk up a flight of stairs without getting winded.

I will stop pretending that laughing so much is an effective ab workout.

I will call my sister more.

I will try to prevent the creation of an Elle-shaped ass indentation on my new couch by getting OFF my ass every once in a while to do something productive, like laundry or the dishes.

I will really, really try to make these resolutions last longer than two weeks.

Happy New Year, everyone!!

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

I swear, your dad used to be cool

Canadian Club ad campaign

Via The Good Grape

Monday, December 29, 2008

More than you wanted to know

I meant to tell you guys, I love that most of you were considerate enough to let your readers know that you were going to go AWOL around the holidays. It's expected, of course, but you still gave us that courteous heads up.

Me? I simply disappeared. Sowwwrrrryyy.

And now that I'm back, I've gone through my reader and found that my dear Ang has specifically called me out and challenged me to name 25 random things (facts, habits, goals, whatever) about myself.

1. I almost never go without nail polish.

2. I became vegetarian at age 3 when I was told that hamburgers are cows.

3. I became less of a vegetarian at age 20 when I realized that if I didn't add chicken to my dorm food diet, I might actually die of malnutrition.

4. I have naturally wavy hair. I would call it curly, but that wrongly implies that it is capable of looking pretty. So I straighten it. Every day.

5. I have 3 tattoos. I don't think I'll be getting any more because that shit hurts.

6. I grew up with a mom who has scleroderma. I wasn't supposed to -- science said she had a 20% chance of survival past 5 years at the time of her diagnosis. That was 1993. As you know, that crazy hippie is still alive and kicking.

7. You wouldn't think it, but I cry pretty easily.

8. I get claustrophobic on the trains and the commute is the main reason I'm resistant toward moving to Wicker Park.

9. I am tone deaf.

10. I truly wonder if I ever want children...

11. My shower curtain, umbrella and wedding dress are all Nicole Miller. I fully admit that I have a problem.

12. I believe that EVERYONE who knows an addict should attend an open NA meeting. Even if you cry (see #7)... I honestly wonder if NarAnon could possibly be as eye-opening.

13. I'm a cooler -- if I gamble, not only will I lose, but if you're sitting near me, you'll lose too. Casinos should employ me to just wander around and sit near people who are making too much money.

14. I rarely wear jewelry.

15. I have an unhealthy crush on Paul Rudd and no one else. Uhhhh, except Dave, of course. (And it took me a re-read to realize how that sounded without the caveat.)

16. This past year, I turned down a job working for one of the richest woman in America (the queen of all media -- and no, I'm not talking about Perez Hilton). I now spend every waking moment WHY I did such a thing and wondering just how badly I burned that bridge.

17. I absolutely must get 8 hours of sleep or else I'm a nightmare to be around. Like, more than usual.

18. Sometimes I have a hard time answering my cell phone because I like to listen to my ring tones (which are mostly Flight of the Conchords).

19. I hate Jessica Alba, Kirsten Dunst, Kiera Knightly and Holly from The Girls Next Door.

20. My mom put condoms in my Christmas stocking this year. What is WRONG WITH HER?

21. When I got a glass of wine on the plane immediately after travel hell, I wasn't carded -- but the girl in front of me was. Am I starting to look haggard?

22. I almost always fall asleep with the TV on. It's often tuned to something that normal people don't fall asleep to, like The First 48 or another equally grotesque series that features dead bodies.

23. I really only clean my apartment when I know I'm having people over. Otherwise, it kinda looks like a trailer park war zone, peppered with decent furniture.

24. The only two times I've traveled out of the country, I went to Cancun and Australia. Frankly, that's a little embarrassing, but I've got to admit that I'm not dying to be a world traveler.

25. I've had the same glasses since 7th grade and I desperately need to update that look. Very, very desperately.

Okay, there ya go. I'm not tagging anyone specifically, but I would love to read some details from those of you who comment here quite a bit. Let's hear it!

Sunday, December 28, 2008

My holiday travel, in a nutshell

Effing weather.

I knew this wasn't going to happen, but I decided to document the optimism anyway.

Right after I took this screenshot, they let us board. It looked like a fucking blizzard outside, but we were on the plane, we had de-iced and we we waiting our turn on the runway. We thought we were golden.

Until we realized that we had been waiting in line so long that our wings froze over again and we had to drive all the way back to the gate to get de-iced again. Of course, by the time we did THAT, the weather was worse and American decided to ground all flights.

We were so close!!

Instead, the made us get off the plane and wait around in the airport again.

Remember when we were on schedule?

They finally let us back on the plane and we went through the whole process again. Some people started clapping as soon as we got back in line on the runway, but one cranky bitch (who I loved) yelled at everyone and goes, "Oh, nuh uh! Not yet, folks. Let's wait and see if we actually get off the ground this time." We did.

Oh, holidays. It was great to be home and even better to enjoy some warm weather for a bit. I'll tell ya, I miss these little ones already:

Aw, my babies.

Anyway, I'm now back in Chicago, relaxing on the couch while Dave and my brother watch football. Yep, my bro decided at the last minute to take a trip here for New Year's. Clearly, I'll be taking a little more time off work than I'd planned. ;-)

Hope your holidays were wonderful as well!

Sunday, December 21, 2008

The definition of pure klass

At the risk of starting off this post as an opening to Stuff White People Like, I'll have you all know that Dave and I went to the ballet last night for my birthday. Yep, the ballet.

I went to see plays and ballets in NYC quite a bit when I was young, however my only recollection of going into the city is stepping out of the car for the first time and announcing, "I don't like this place. It's dirty." CATS, the Nutcracker -- those details all fuzzy.

Nonetheless, my grandmother did all she could to help us be cultured (snotty?) little East Coasters. Her efforts are much appreciated, but I was looking forward to seeing the Nutcracker this weekend for the simple fact that I'm now old enough to really enjoy it.

But, oh, nooooo. I wasn't going to be allowed to enjoy it. Not completely. Not thanks to the klassy people who showed up.

First off, I have to say that my biggest pet peeve is when people show up to the theater in jeans. Jeans, really? It's not a fucking NASCAR race, folks, it's the theater. At least pretend to have enough class and respect to put on a pair of khakis. Jesus.

So, I was already a little annoyed when I saw several people showing up in jeans, but wevs. It's totally unreasonable to expect that an entire theater be filled with people dressed to the nines. People suck, I know that.

But is it really so unreasonable to expect people to NOT CLAP TO THE BEAT OF THE MUSIC AT A FREAKIN BALLET??

Oh, yes they did.

I promise, I could not make this up.

Not only were people clapping after every pirouette and grand jete (let's calm down, everyone, they learned that shit at the age of 10), but a wildly inappropriate section of the theater actually started clapping along with the beat of the music during the second act. Like it was a square dance.

I was appalled and totally embarrassed for us as an audience. The dancers need concentration, they need to hear the music, the musicians need to hear each other -- under no circumstance should we cheapen the ballet experience by ruining those important elements and pretending we're all at some keg-infested ho-down.

They didn't stop there, though.

This klass act also got pretty vocal. As soon as the Russian dancers set foot on stage (before they even did anything), the group was hooting and cheering! AHHH, god dammit, it's not a pep rally either!

I honestly don't know what's wrong with people. I know that people are insisting that the "rules" of theater are becoming more relaxed, but I don't go to the theater to be entertained anything other than what's on stage. Sure, it all makes good fodder for a bitchy blog post, but I'd much rather be able to enjoy a production than be distracted by the assholes in the audience.

So, in review, the ballet is NOT a:

  • NASCAR race
  • Square dance
  • Ho-down
  • Pep rally

Let's try to remember that next time we all go see a show, shall we?

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Australia Honeymoon, Part 2

I kinda forgot that I started a string of honeymoon pictures, so here's more of Australia, in all it's beautiful, warm-weathered glory. Oh, god, how I miss that place right now. Effing Chicago.

On the ferry at 8am, since the time change made us wake up at 6.

Sydney Harbor Bridge

On our way to Manly Beach.

Manly! Such a cute little place.

More Manly.

Not many people laying out in 60 degrees.

Lunch at a pub on the water.

Liquid lunch, that is.

Then we got drunk and went grocery shopping. "We've done the MATHS for you" was hilarious.

Drunk ferry trip back to Sydney

Downtown Sydney

The next day, we had a day-long tour through the Blue Mountains, which was awesome. I took millions of pictures, but most of it was all about the trees, plants, vegetation. Really boring shit that starts looking the same. So I've spared you the redundancy.

Our first stop on the way through the Blue Mountains.


Look! Nature!

Next stop, Echo Point.

Those three rocks behind us? The Three Sisters. There's a legend behind this... Something about some three chicks pissing off a monster and then their witch doctor dad turned them into stone to save them. (Clearly, I paid attention really well.)

Three Sisters

WTF was this guy doing?? I could not contain my hysterics, at all.

Wandering through the mountains.

Very cool.

Okay, now THIS was the best part of the trip...

Mini 'roos!

Don't eat my face.

More kangaroos.

Bird of some sort. Looks fake, right?

Koala! I blinded this guy with my flash at first, but he seemed to bounce back.


This lazy bastard was kinda awesome.



Tasmanian Devil. She was a feisty bitch.



And that's when my camera died. Pretty cool, though. Next up, we hopped a flight to Port Douglas, farther north. Warm, beachy, incredible. There was snorkeling and drinking, though thankfully not at the same time.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Pity party, table for 1

Well, my birthday is on Saturday. As I mentioned in my last post, I have mixed feelings about this. To sum it all up...

December birthdays SUCK.

December birthdays for Jewtherans, however, suck the most. (Jewtheran = Jew + Lutheran = Hanukkah + Christmas = Me. Oy vey.)

It's not the combo birthday/Hanukkah/Christmas present as much as it is the whole feeling of inconvenience surrounding the celebration. I guess I get it, since my birthday is a bit of an inconvenience for me too. We're all busy around the holidays, making sure we get our holiday cards out on time, shopping for presents, making sure we don't forget anyone, wrapping those presents, attending parties, planning dinners, wrapping up end-of-the-year projects at work -- it's a busy freaking time. And right while everyone's in total crazed holiday mode, BAM. Birthday. It's often an "oh shit" moment.

For most birthday celebrations, it's a much different feeling/celebration because there's nothing else to focus on. We are able to not just remember the birthday, but also plan something special, put some careful thought into a birthday card and come together for one pointed event (read: drunk fest).

December birthdays are different. The plans seem more harried, the cards are an afterthought and the excitement has more to do with the almost-here Chrismahanukwanzakah. In the past, some people have forgotten to acknowledge my birthday, others run out and pick up a card ON my birthday before thrusting it into my hands. I'm not saying I'm more important than Jesus or the festival of lights, but, man, do I hate feeling like an inconvenience. And in typical first-born fashion, I simply don't want to share my birthday with the holidays anymore! Eff off holidays! My turn!

And, yes, I'm aware that all of this makes me a whiny, bratty grouch. Bah fucking humbug.

So that's how I feel about my birthday, Internet. I want to like it, but I simply don't. I'll probably be a royal pain in the ass for the next two weeks, so to keep the bitterness to a minimum, I'll do what I do best. Drinky drinky!

Another (less Intervention-worthy) option is to change my birthday to April. Nothing happens in April! No one else I know has an April birthday, there's no major holiday that month, it's not close enough to summer to be filled with chaos. April is the perfect birthday month. Might not be a bad idea... I'll think about it, and if I do feel like demanding a party, presents and undivided attention that month, I'll be sure to let you know.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Babies, booze and a weekend recap

This weekend, I:

  • Watched my boss's high-five attempt turn into a sloppy bitch slap at our holiday party. Luckily, the child she smacked was unfazed. The rest of us, however, just about died in a fit of hysterics.
  • Learned that two of my friends are going to be daddies! On purpose! Ahhh, I'm so excited!!!
  • Consulted the Chinese Pregnancy Calendar and determined that one friend is having a boy, one is having a girl. (Who needs an ultrasound?) The one who is having a girl can no longer tell Dave "BROS BEFORE HOES" every time he sees him.
  • Learned that Dave has been on Twitter for a few months, despite the fact that he could not stop ridiculing the rest of us who've been on there. I think my trust is broken...
  • Bought tons of Christmas/Hanukkah presents for my family and thus felt quite pleased with myself until I remembered that there was NO discussion of a Christmas bonus at my work party. Hey, thanks for keeping us in the loop on that one.
  • Drank lots of wine and learned even more about it:

(pictures stolen from Ang)
  • Started reading book 4 of the Twilight series, simply because I was told there was sex in it. After seeing the horrible movie, I've had a tough time making it through the books without picturing the complete retardation that I witnessed on screen. Hoping this will be different.
  • Discovered that the "Christmas tree" my mom mailed to me is actually a rosemary plant that she calls "Dave's Hanukkah tree." I've mentioned she's weird before, right?
  • Realized that this is my last week of work before Christmas!
  • Realized that my birthday is 5 days away. I have very mixed feelings about this. Maybe I'll get into that later. (Though you other December babies already know the feeling.)

That was my weekend. How was yours?

Monday, December 8, 2008

This is what I have to look forward to... forever

The process of changing your last name when you're married is tedious and boring.

The end result when you see how credit card companies (yes, plural) think your last name is spelled, however, is much more entertaining.

When I married Dave, I went from one Italian last name to another. No big deal, I figured. In 25 years, I'd never, ever had a problem with people spelling my last name. Nor should I -- it was an easy one.


Quite different, I'm noticing.

I don't feel like giving out my last name, so I'll just reveal that it ends in "tto." Amex, however, decided to give me a new card that ended in "to." Yeah, who cares about that extra t? Totally superfluous. Get it outta here!

My BOA credit card decided to get even more wild. Fuck those t's entirely! This other credit card now ends in "ppo," making my last name sound like a wacky cartoon character. Umm, thanks.

I now realize that I must succumb to a life of constantly repeating and spelling my last name, and I am not happy about that. To change two credit cards, I have had to spell and repeat my name a total of 5 (soon to be 6 or 7) times. You know how people say that we spend however-many-years of our lives sleeping or on the phone or watching TV? I'm wondering how many years of my life will be spent spelling. The short answer: too many.

Tell me, Facebook friends and stalkers, is my last name REALLY that difficult?

Friday, December 5, 2008

Things I want and can't have

Oh, frustration.

Here are some things I decided I wanted last night, but I can't have them -- not because they're too expensive (actually, they're pretty cheap), but because either my sizes are unavailable or the item has sold out completely and I'm too lazy to shop around.

And here is something I cannot afford, now or ever.


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