Saturday, November 26, 2005
Where are you?
I totally ripped this idea from Jake, although, I have had my unofficial "Where are my readers" link on the right-hand side there for awhile. It tells me where every hit comes from via my sitemeter.
This is more for people who want to wave to me from their tiny satellite houses. For some reason, I find it fascinating to see where people are reading my blog from - like, about an hour ago, people in both Lima, Peru and Scottsdale, Arizona were checking out my goods.
So tell me, where are you??
File with the Department of Redundancy Department
The other day I was in the metro and saw an ad for a school: UMUC.
It seems that stands for the University of Maryland University College.
No, I'm not kidding. It could only be better if it was located in College Park.
Friday, November 25, 2005
We make fun of my grandpa for taking a picture of every single holiday table set-up since my sister and I were born - like, we could fill albums with photos of beautiful tables with no chairs filled. But, I'm already turning into him:
I took about twenty photos of our meager Thanksgiving table before I let my roommates sit down. I'm actually a little mad at myself, because I took NO pictures of the food! And let me tell you, we did a bang-up job, seriously. C made yummy corn muffins and some bad-ass scottish apple pie for dessert (which we had with lactose-free vanilla ice cream, because there was not one carton of regular vanilla left in the entire store this morning, and my mother convinced me last summer that lactose-free tastes exactly the same (and it does)). J fired up the grill for some turkey burgers (SO good, and lean!).
But I think the highlight were my grilled yams. A few days ago I called my mom and begged for some easy autumnal-veg dish that I couldn't screw up. She said "put some sliced yams on the grill." First you put them in the microwave for a few minutes (three, it turns out), then on the grill for about ten minutes, then immediately put on some brown sugar, chopped pecans and a tad of butter so it all melts in. Even C, who hates everything, was blown away. Thanks Mom!
The only fiasco we had were the hazelnuts. C bought them by mistake instead of pecans for his pie, which cracked me up because...who mixes up pecans and hazelnuts in the shell?? They look like the acorns that fell off the tree outside. The internets informed us you can put them in the oven for ten minutes, they split open, and bada-bing, you have roasted hazelnuts. Except, you don't. We put them in for ten minutes...nothing, ten more minutes...still not split open, but we started to smell delicious nutty-smells, ten more minutes...one out of the entire bag had split, and we started to smell terrible burning-nut smell. Finally, C decided to pull the plug on the operation. He tried to crush the nuts between his oven-mitt and the counter - nada. But now he's absolutely determined to win out over the nuts, so he grabs some pliers from the toolbox. He finally conquers the nutshell only to find...a shriveled burnt hazelnut-shaped thing inside. Bah. I shook him by the shoulders and convinced him to let them go. They went in a nice bowl for our centerpiece. They don't look like much in the picture, but they're awfully festive...I swear.
Thursday, November 24, 2005
"Oh, and uh, Happy Thanksgiving to all y'all."
That's what I heard over the intercom last night while I waited forty-five minutes for a metro train. Maybe it was karmic payback for my post from yesterday. I hate waiting for trains at closing time, because they wait for all the trains to get to the connections so no one gets stranded at Gallery Place or L'Enfant Plaza. So, yes, it was forty minutes into Thanksgiving by the time my train came.
However, I cleaned up yesterday. I met my old co-workers in Chinatown to see Rent on opening day. Being a Rent virgin, I thought it was fantastic; even people who are familiar with the play said the movie was really well done. And everyone is so damn good looking, well, except for the girl playing Maureen, only because she looks like my old skank boss, so that was just distracting.
We went after the movie to get some beers and to stretch our stomachs properly (with bar food) for the feast today. Apparently at work they were forced to play another dumb-ass game like we did on Halloween and the boys all won a $15 iTunes card. So, one of the boys gave me his because he didn't want iTunes to detect all the stolen music on his computer, except...yeah right. Then another one of my friends remembered she had a Starbucks card to give me from another guy we worked with, who's last day happened to be the day after I got fired. The bosses gave it to him for his going-away whatever and he said he wanted me to have it cause I got screwed. Wasn't that nice of him? I'm not sure how much money's on it, though I would guess $50, so I'll have to go test it out later. My friends are all such giving people, which made me feel kind of like an ass because I was being a bit of a cheapskate yesterday. One reason I know we're such a generous bunch is that every single time we go out and it comes time to pay, we always end up with WAY more money than we need, even with 20% tip - and how often does that happen? (We soon discovered that the extra money was perfect for downpayment on a pitcher at the next bar.) But I'm so broke right now I was like "um, can I get some change back then?" Ha. Oh well, my friends understand, and it was an early night anyway.
So - what's the Thanksgiving Day Menu here on U Street? The White House gives you theirs, like we care, so I'll share mine with you...cause you care:
Fire up the grill - this is America!
-Salmon Burgers for the vegetarian
-Mixed Green Salad with non-descript store-bought dressing
-Corn Bread Muffins
-Swedish Apple Pie (or, in case of total pie failure, Betty Crocker brownies)
Sound good? Stop on by!
You know winter is nearly here when...
I put on "nude" pantyhose and suddenly it looks like my lower half has been in the tropics for the last few months.
Wednesday, November 23, 2005
The Metro it is a-changin'
The metro can simultaneously be the best and the worst thing about this city. Okay, no one would say it's the worst, but it's certianly a constant topic of conversation. To end an awkward silence, Washingtonians don't say, "How about that weather?" Instead we say, "Did you see the new metro car plans? What the hell, right??"
I'm sure you folks saw the new plans for the metro cars, ripping out most of the seats and putting more hand rails in. Personally, I'm okay with it, since I usually stand anyway, but I have friends with commutes that take them across the tri-state area everyday and they're less than thrilled with the thought of standing for close to an hour. Of course, no matter who likes it and who doesn't, WMATA will probably do whatever they want anyway.
I was a bit concerned when I read this mugging story via DC Blogs the other day. It's pretty scary and yet not that surprising, except where it happened - NW on the red line. They caught one of the girls involved the other day, but it's still something to think about when you're on the train: look out for yourself, in case no one else is (and let's face it, they probably aren't, and don't care if you call for help).
One of the things this person complains about is the lack of signs on the metro displaying a number you can call when the train operator and the WMATA officers on the platforms blatantly ignore you. Today I hopped on the green line and noticed a long poster on the inside of the car above the windows. It was incredibly wordy and started out with a dictionary-italicized word, something like:
"SUMSPICIOUS (n) - A suspicious package left unattended...blahblahblahBLAHblahblahBLAHBLAHBLAH! If you see one of these 'sumspicious' please call XXX-XXX-XXXX."
Well, that was really fucking helpful. Thanks. If I see a "sumspicious" (clever!), I'll be sure to read your novel before contacting the authorities. And when I do, I'm sure they'll stop immediately and not keep going stop after stop after stop as all the people in the car call the train operater who ignores them and then rapidly exit and pound on the other cars yelling for them to exit and freaking out everyone except the metro authories who ask what package we know nothing of what you speak.
The good news is - the trash cans are back! Are you as excited as me?? My pockets will no longer be cluttered with gum wrappers! My hands will not hold empty starbucks coffee containers for half an hour! Hallelujah!
Quinn wanted me to tell you about the guy who farted every few seconds on his car this morning, but I think I've had enough metro stories for one day.
In lighter news, the rankings have come out for this years most dangerous cities, and DC dropped from 6th to 13th! It's practically utopia over here!
Well, except on the metro I guess.
Tuesday, November 22, 2005
Monday, November 21, 2005
A sure fire way to determine you're right-handed.
Last night C and I were watching an old episode of Law & Order. What transpired was one of the weirder conversations I've had in awhile:
Coroner: "Your guy is left-handed."
Lenny: "How do you know?"
Coroner: "Your vic's neck was broken from behind. Come stand here." Jesse L. Martin duly stands in front of her, facing away from her. The red-haired coroner takes her hands and puts them on each side of his head. She twists his head around by pushing her left hand towards the front, while her right hand pushes towards the back. "See, that's the natural movement."
C: "Huh." Puts his hand out in front of him and pretends to break someone's neck. "I don't think that's natural."
Me: Puts my hands out and pretends to break someone's neck. "Yes it is, I'm right handed, see how I'd twist in front with my right hand?"
C: "You're crazy, I'd totally push forward with my left hand."
(Picture the both of us sitting on the couch pretending to break someone's neck over and over to see which way is more "natural."
Me: "But you're right-handed?"
Me: "Are you ambidexterous?"
C: "No. Well, I dribble with my left hand."
Me: "A basketball?"
Me: "Okay, so to dribble a basketball and break someone's neck, you're left-handed."
A few days ago I got a big envelope from Capital One:
Wow! I must have won something! It didn't weigh much, but I opened it right up:
Wha?? What the hell?
Are you kidding me? No, I didn't really think they'd sent me a gift, but I expected more than ONE piece of paper! What a fucking waste of a huge-ass envelope! Obviously they wanted to get my attention, but here's a note to Capital One: Not only did I still throw it away, just like everything else you send me, but now I'm furious that you're using my monthly fees to waste huge amounts of resources for no purpose whatsoever. Yes, you got my attention, but it wasn't the kind you wanted. Well played.
So, in my continuing unemployment, I woke up late today, probably due to the rain. I also woke up with ungodly cramps, which I haven't had in years thanks to my awesome depo that I had to stop using when my health insurance ran out. Instead of going to the gym like I planned, I turned on the space heater, got an afghan, called Chase, and we watched the food network all day. Chase enjoyed our day so much, he didn't budge when I got up to check my email:
Of course, he had a busier day than me, trying to eat the postal worker who delivered the package from my mom this afternoon. It's hard work, you know.
Oh Kevin Bacon, you crazy fool.
I think I mentioned that I saw Walk the Line on Friday. I know it's getting mediocre reviews, but I really enjoyed it. I knew almost nothing about Johnny Cash's life, but the commercials and trailers were really well done so that by the time it came out I was just dying to see it. Strangely enough, Trent on Pink is the New Blog says exactly what I thought about this movie. The acting was great, especially Joaquin (who can do very little wrong where I'm concerned), and even though I wouldn't typically go out and buy a Cash album, I totally found myself tapping my foot along many a time.
So, want to hear the hilarious part now? My grandma doesn't really see a ton of movies, but I thought this might be something she enjoyed, since she grew up in the same era and may have been a fan. So I'm on the phone with her and tell her that, and as we're talking about the movie for awhile I mention how one of Cash's daughters from his first marriage is not happy with the film because she thinks it portrayed her mother badly. Which, it kind of did, but a lot of her "bitchyness" in the movies is pretty easily justified by Cash's behavior with her. To this my grandma says casually, "Hmm, yeah, she used to live around here." Me: "What? You mean in Ventura?" Grandma: "Yeah, she passed away just a few months ago. She was in my sewing circle for awhile." Me: "What?! You were friends with her??"
At this point, my brain is literally going: "Grandma, Vive, Johnny Cash! I know Johnny Cash by three degrees of separation!" Ha. I am a HUGE dork. Also, you just KNOW that at some point in his life Johnny Cash either met Kevin Bacon or met someone who knew Kevin Bacon. I WIN! I know Kevin Bacon by, at most, FIVE degrees of separation! Hahaha...oh, it's the little things that keep us going.
Oh, and in case you were persuaded by the movie, my grandma also says that Vive was a very sweet woman.