Tuesday, October 6, 2009

The last 30+ days

Wow, it's been more than a month...so much has happened. Here are a few highlights:
  • I surprised my mom for her birthday and got to spend some quality time with one of my brothers and see lots of friends (and their babies).
  • Spent a fantastic Labor Day with several of my favorite ladies and had an amazing brunch complete with Texas-shaped waffles.
  • Did speed dating with a girlfriend and got asked out on 12 dates in two days. It was actually really fun! Four minutes is just enough time I think, it was interesting but without any pressure or the aspects of dating that make me nervous.
  • My cell phone finally died and I went a couple of weeks without it. It was nice on some level to be unreachable, but I'm glad to be connected again. After much thought and talking, I finally found a way to get an iphone and I am L-O-V-I-N-G it. I'm not really a gadget person nor do I usually splurge for technology (anyone who has seen my awesome TV/VCR combo I'm still rocking from my dorm days can testify to that), but I am addicted.
  • Traveled to West Virginia for an Oktoberfest party and walked around Harper's Ferry a bit.
  • Went to a party at the German Ambassador's residence. It was amazing! Like the party scene out of Meet Joe Black except without Brad Pitt as death in human form.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Bands, buses, and boys

It's been too long since my last post, and since I'm still awake, I thought I'd remedy that. It's been a busy few weeks. Lots of work and late nights and some fun going out nights too. Since my last blog, I went to see Incubus, went on a really fun tubing trip in Virginia, and have lately been a magnet for interesting men.

Incubus was great although Tom and I felt pretty old being there. We had read the pavilion rules that clearly said no outside alcohol or tailgating so we weren't prepared, but luckily Tom had some beers and a bottle of wine (and a corkscrew) in the car. Way to be prepared Mr. Merchant Marine. What's even funnier is that in a parking lot full of high schoolers blatantly boozing by their cars, Tom and I felt the need to hide our tailgating--like we were the ones that would get busted in that crowd! So I ended up having to drink my red wine out of a used Burger King cup, but it was a fun show and they played all their hits from my college years.

For tubing we joined a big group and rented a party bus to drive us to the river and back home. We had a great crew, and even a first-timer who fell in love with tubing. I was a Nazi with the sunscreen and luckily my fair skin didn't burn. Lots of mimosas, vodka and gatorades, sun, and a pit stop at Five Guys made for a really fun, but exhausting Saturday. After that I didn't even rally and go out...it was off to bed for me.

Lately I have been discussing with some of my friends the idea that you either have lots of guys calling you or none...why is it all or nothing? Feast of famine? When it rains it pours....This phenomenon has plagued several of my girlfriends and lately me as well. I don't know what it was about the last week, but it seems to be raining men. I have met a new one every night I've been out. Of course none of these men have amounted to anything more than a one-time flirtation at a bar. Even if I did give them my number, I am notorious for not answering. Silly boys, don't you know I only want men who ignore me! Still, it's been pretty fun. The odd thing is that after nearly two years of being single, I have just started to say out loud that I may actually be ready for a relationship again. Admittedly, there are aspects of having a boyfriend that I miss. However, each time I met one of these guys, all I kept screaming inside was "I don't want to date anyone!"  Maybe that has just become my nice kiss-off...it's not you, it's me...I just ended a long relationship. Or maybe I just don't want to date them

Friday, July 31, 2009

Adventures at the Bottom Line

You never know what you will encounter during a night at the Bottom Line. KB and Tom and I go there quite a bit. It's the official bar of Tom's rugby team, and generally a great time. KB and I have been stopping by sans rugby team lately for some mid-week drinking since it's close to work and we like the bartender and Wednesday is Mexican Hump Day. A few weeks ago we were there and there was a group of people who kept going outside to watch a guy try to toss a tennis ball over one of the buildings across the street in downtown. It was amusing. Lots of betting and trash talking and just silliness.

This week, we made it to the Line after an evening of wine-tasting. Things were pretty normal until this girl came and sat down a few stools away from us. She seemed normal and vaguely familiar. Apparently she made some remark about KB and me being on our phones, but I let it slide. Then she did something I haven't seen...well at least not outside of an elementary school cafeteria. She started eating and drinking condiments. No food, just the condiments. She scooped out several heaping dollops of Grey Poupon (with a drinking straw), then a few squirts of ketchup and her grand finale was ordering several shots of malt vinegar. After drinking them from a shot glass, she started rubbing the vinegar all over her face proclaiming that it's so good for your skin. It was a freakshow. I really have no idea what was going on. I am sure I was gawking. It was just so weird. And I don't think she was homeless. Just another night at the Line...

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

From Hearings to Hospitals

It's been a somewhat emotional day. Today was the preliminary hearing for the suspect in the murder of our member Dr. Tiller. I watched part of the hearing on the internet and it was just awful to hear all the details again. Two fellow ushers from Dr. Tiller's church, who were eyewitnesses to the murder, testified today. It's still just so sad, and at times I really don't believe it even happened. The trial has been set for the end of September so we shall wait and see...

I also had a lovely chat with my grandmother tonight. She is headed into surgery tomorrow and I'm sad I can't be there. Several years ago when my grandfather had to have heart surgery, I stayed all night at the hospital with my grandmother. We stayed in the waiting room outside the ICU all night, curled up on tiny, uncomfortable couches talking in the dark. Although we were very worried about my grandfather and staying against the advice and wishes of the hospital staff, it was as fun as a night like that could be. It was a rare time in my adult life where I was able to have girl time with her. There was no one else around and she could ask me all kinds of things about my life (I was fresh out of a break up and back from a cross country move that no one in my family really talked about...but that's a whole other story!). I really cherish that night. 

This year on my birthday, inside my card was a letter from my grandmother, which talked about that very night and how much she wished I could be there to do the same thing for my grandfather when she has her surgery this week. I do wish I could be there too. 

She and my grandfather are inseparable. In fact, in more than 50 years of marriage, I think they can count on two hands (if not one) the nights they have spent apart. Hearing her talk tonight about how worried my grandfather is, reminded me how much I wish I had that kind of love in my life. Sure, I've debated the merits of being that dependent on someone. Is it really more love or fear, romantic or pathetic? I see all the sides, but tonight it makes me tear up thinking about how connected they are after all these years. I know so many people who never knew their grandparents and I am so fortunate to have a great relationship with mine. Of all the things I miss in Texas, they are one of the most. 

Sunday, July 26, 2009

On the Eve of Another Week...

It's Sunday night again...time to get ready for what I hope will be another fun, productive week. I'm actually a little giddy about going to the office tomorrow. No real reason I should be, but I find myself like this a lot at night when I think about the next day--I just can't wait to go and get the day started. Don't get me wrong, I still have trouble getting up and out of bed (but that's just because I hate mornings), but once I'm in the shower, I look forward to getting into the office. It's no secret I love my job, and I realize I am extraordinarily lucky that I feel this way. 

Although that area of my life is great, more and more I am wrestling with figuring out what I actually want in arenas outside the professional. Lately I seem to think I know what I want and once I get it (or get close to getting it) I realize it is not exactly what I had in mind. My brother has always said that I lie to myself quite well. And looking back I can see that he has a case. Sometimes it is hard to admit what you really want, even to yourself. I think I know, but I'm just too afraid to say it out loud. Too afraid that if I do it will be real and then if I can't have it, I'll get hurt. But I really think I'm getting close to having more of it figured out. 

In many ways I'm getting back into a good groove. The past two weekends have been full of friends and actually lots of fun with people outside of my usual crew. I even managed to get out of the office and have lunch with a fabulous friend last week, and that is something I never do (aside from my weekly lunch with KB, but we work down the hall from each other so that doesn't take much effort). 

So all in all, as I sit at Busboys & Poets this Sunday evening, life is good. 

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Oh Baby!

I seem to be having trouble sleeping lately. I have always stayed up late and have dealt with bouts of insomnia most of my life so I should be used to it I guess. As a child, I was a big hit at slumber parties since I could always outlast everyone else and these days I am often the last woman standing when I go out. At least I don't have to be at work until 10ish so it's not so bad.

I think I have figured out part of what is causing this latest case of insomnia, and it pivots around factors that I cannot control nor discuss at the moment. Oh well.

Last night I thought I was actually going to get to sleep--I had gone to the gym, I was really tired and I practically dozed off at the computer. But alas, once I changed, crawled under the covers and tried to sleep, I was up for HOURS. And, to top it off, I was clenching my jaw. Oh joy!

Once I finally fell asleep I had a very graphic dream that I was pregnant! I woke up at one point and even went back to sleep so I could finish the dream and give birth, which coincidentally was short and painless! Insanity! This isn't the first time I have dreamed about having a baby lately. Don't worry, this isn't my way of announcing any news. I am not, I repeat, I am not preggers. I blame all the babies! I know like 11 people right now that either just had or are very
soon having a baby--and two of those people have twins! It's an epidemic...a drooling, poopy, but oh so adorable one, but an epidemic just the same (case in point my "nephew" Jackson pictured at the right--I just want to squeeze him!).

I don't think it means anything. A wise friend once told me that if you dream you are pregnant, it just means someone in your circle is pregnant...and Lord knows that's true. 

Back to not sleeping. Why am I so wide awake home all alone at 1 am on a Wed???

Monday, July 20, 2009

Make A Wish

I recently celebrated my birthday...the big 28. I am someone that makes a big deal/production/spectacle out of the day of my birth. This year was no different. We had our second annual KMT (Kira/Melissa/Tom) Birthday Extravaganza. For me there is so much stress and anxiety associated with this party. I picked the venue, sent out the evite, took off work to make and ice four dozen cupcakes and construct a custom stand, and I worried all the while that no one would show up. Silly, I know, but I always do this.

Luckily, many of you did make it to the party and the ones that couldn't come for geographic reasons called and texted. In the end, it was a fabulous party! We packed the space, consumed way too many mojitos (and bday shots, including tequila, which I don't take anymore, thanks Reed!) and I danced ON almost every surface upstairs at Cafe Citron. At one point I was dancing on a (not-so-sturdy) upholstered bench when one of the security guys made a beeline over to me...I assumed he was coming to make me get down since I was wearing a stunning pair of heels that probably weren't great for the cushion, but much to my surprise, he suggested I would be more comfortable dancing on the main table where we had served our cupcakes. Uhhh...yes, please! It's not every day you get to do that. So I spent most of the night dancing over my guests, taking tons of aerial pics and generally having a ball. We had DC Police present and even some U.S. Marshals stopped by...as guests of course, KB and I don't require a security detail...at least not when we are away from the office :-).

So here's to what I hope will be an amazing year!

Sunday, June 28, 2009

My Week in Review

My last two weekends have been pretty lame. Not sure what the deal is with me...I'm not in a full-fledged funk, but I'm definitely flirting with one. This is especially problematic as I am approaching my birthday in a couple of weeks. My birthday is a BIG deal and I love it and always want everything to be perfect--last year was pretty great and I hope this year is even better.

I didn't really go out much the last two weekends. Maybe I am still trying to catch up and recover from the insanity of work the last few weeks. Anyway, here's my week in review:


  • Had to buy four new tires following last week's flat.
  • It was a week full of fatalities: DC Metro crash, Ed McMahon, Farrah Fawcett, Michael Jackson
  • I think I have started to grind my teeth again while I'm typing...I might be doing it right now! Ugh!

Sunday, June 21, 2009

You can't change a man...but I can change a tire...

Yesterday, I did something I don't do often: I got up early...on a Saturday. I was actually doing pretty well at being up and at 'em and dressed and out the door early to pick up KB and go the the National Cathedral to watch our friend's confirmation (yes, I was up early and in a church...try to contain your surprise) until I got to my car and found out I had a flat tire. I had to brave the rain, hop a bus, then the metro, then a cab and was still 15 min late. The Cathedral is beautiful and it's so huge that it actually wouldn't have been that big of a deal to walk in late, (since people are walking around taking tours even during services) except I was wearing loud heels (of course!). So i had to tip-toe in and looked a little crazy, but I'm glad we were able to be there for our friend.

Now back to the tire. I thought about my options yesterday, but decided I would handle it today. On the advice of a friend, I walked a couple of miles to an auto repair store and bought a can of fix-a-flat, but it wasn't working. I thought about leaving it until later in the week since my car is legally parked on my street and I don't need to drive for a few days, but I didn't want this hanging over my head. I ran through a list of people (let's just say it: men) I could call and vetoed all of them. I would rather pay than ask someone and feel like I am inconveniencing them...the only exception to this is family or a boyfriend...of which I have neither here. Involving a man just seemed more complicated so I sucked it up, watched an ehow video and did it myself.

This is the first time I have ever changed a tire and I am quite proud of myself! I'm from a family where women don't even pump their own gas, and as much as I reject and defy most of my upbringing, I have to admit, I liked being the girl that had car stuff handled by a guy. Since it's Father's Day, I talked to my dad today and informed him of my automobile victory - I think I crushed him. He was so upset he wasn't here to do it and that I had to do it myself. The first thing he said was "you couldn't get a boy to do it?" It was cute in a way. I just told him it was easier this way. How do I explain to him that asking some guys would send the wrong message or complicate things or be not nice given I keep turning them down for dates or be held over my head forever like everything else from the last eight years?

My mom was very proud at least.

The Last Three Weeks

The last three weeks have been an absolute whirlwind.

From the moment I got the call about Dr. Tiller's murder, I have been going nonstop. I have fielded more press calls than I can remember, written alerts for our members, talking points, and a eulogy. I watched my boss do tapings at NPR and appear on Rachel Maddow. I even traveled to Wichita at the last minute to help at the funeral. 

I can honestly say I have never worked harder or been more tired in my entire life. Although the circumstances have been terrible, I am very proud of the work I have done these last few weeks. 

Like any death, the past few weeks have given me perspective.  So many cliches come to mind: life is short, seize the day, say what you need to say. It's a reminder to not play games and not wait by the phone. When it comes to people and relationships, I wish I was better about going after what I want. Blame the southern belle in me, but I am typically the one who waits for the guy to call and make the move...that's just me. Still, an event like this makes you reevaluate your course and remember the important people in your life.

So many of you have called or texted to check in with me during this time and it means the world to me. Thank you. I have amazing people in my life and whether I tell you often enough or not, please know that I know it.

Sunday, May 31, 2009

Dr. Tiller murdered

I got a call today...a call we talk about at my job...a call I have luckily not received, until now. The call was to tell me that one of our members--a doctor in Kansas--had been murdered. We would come to learn he was gunned down in the foyer of his church where he was ushering during Sunday morning services.

I couldn't stop shaking most of the day. I have cried several times and am generally fighting nausea. It's just so senseless and disgusting.

I met Dr. George Tiller several times and he was one of the nicest, most compassionate men I have ever met. He was not the monster the antis have tried to paint him as...he was a husband, father, grandfather, and physician. He was the last resort for many women in desperate situations across the country.

I've been in the office most of the day and this is one of the saddest parts of my job--but it is also a reminder that the work I do is so necessary.

I just feel sick. This is a tremendous loss and my heart goes out to his family.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

My Week in Review

A special Memorial Day edition:

  • Hung out with one of my favorite bartenders and friend back home from Austin
  • Jazz in the Sculpture Garden started this week!!! One of my fave parts of summer in DC! Went with my crew from last year and a bunch of new friends...so fun!
  • Dogsat for Mr. Big's new lady friend
  • Arranged for several different friends (who were all strangers) to meet and party in Austin
  • Started watching The Wire--blew through Season 1 in two days...LOVE IT!
  • Went to a fab Memorial Day BBQ...and kept KB out way past her bedtime!
  • Listened to the new DMB album before it's released...can't wait to see them this summer at The Gorge!
  • Made some amazing Poulet a la Basquaise...WJB would be so proud! 

  • Spent the week without my PIC who was on vacay in Ithaca
  • Wine+gin+sweet tea vodka=drunk dialing 
  • After filling up my cart, I had to evacuate Target due to a fire drill 
  • All those episodes of The Wire have me hyper-aware of crime in DC...and I did see a kid shooting at someone else on my way to the grocery store Saturday...scary!

Monday, May 25, 2009

Random thoughts on men, dating, and Richard Schiff characters

Lately I can't escape happy couples. They seem to be everywhere. In line at Giant, kissing on street corners, cuddling on the metro. I'm not bitter, I just feel like everywhere I look I see them and for a split second it reminds me that I am not in one. No one is holding my hand as I walk down 17th street. No one can't get me out of their head.

Don't get me wrong, in terms of men and dating, this is like no other time in my life and I am having so much fun being single. I didn't date much in high school or college and then I was in one major six-year relationship that ended about a year and a half ago. I really didn't think I'd date much when that relationship ended; however, it's been quite interesting. I go out pretty often and I meet guys. I even get asked out more than I ever imagined would happen. I know I shouldn't be complaining...and I'm not. But like everything else, when the phone rings, it's usually not the right guy...not the one you were hoping for and then you feel like a bitch because you know there could be no guys calling. Unfortunately, I always seem to want the guy I can't have: the one who is phobic of commitment, just not that into me, geographically undesirable, or all of the above.

Oh well, here are more random thoughts on men and dating that have been spinning through my mind and I feel like just posting them and not expanding upon them at this time:

  • Apparently it is quite obvious that I am absolutely terrified of a relationship--several men have told me this lately--men that actually have a little knowledge about me.
  • I think I have lost my ability to decipher if a man is hitting on me or just being a nice guy--I attribute this to dealing with so many jerks that the mere fact that a man is being attentive and kind throws me for a loop and I assume he must want something else.
  • I wish everyone had my sense of urgency when it comes to replying to texts/emails/phone calls. Apparently, this is a lot to ask. I'm sorry, but getting a response to a text days later like it's in real time is annoying.
  • For years the idea of a commitment-phobic man seemed a myth to me. Almost all of my guy friends from college are married (that's how we roll in the South); however, in the past year I have met more men than I can count that are incapable of committing and completely averse to marriage.
  • And even some of those that do get married are still a problem--I seem to be a magnet for married men and have been asked out by a couple of them lately.
  • According to facebook, I too can be confusing--in fact I caused a man last night to post that he was questioning the entire female species...oops! I blame the sweet tea vodka!
  • I was recently paid one of the best compliments I have received in awhile: a man told me I have a sexy-Toby Ziegler-thing going on! That's hot for a West Wing lover like me!

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

It's Been Awhile

So it's been a long time since I posted. So much has happened:

I gave my first LIVE radio interview for work!/headed to Portland for business/my co-workers and I snuck into the 23rd floor of the hotel with some beers and a stuffed goat to check out the amazing view of the city/dropped my personal cell phone in a toilet/fixed phone by jamming a paperclip into it/flew to San Francisco to meet my new nephew/went on a ride-along with my best friend's police officer brother/helped get Kinsey and baby Jackson home from the hospital/ate amazing homemade jambalaya with the Lechugas/traveled back home to DC/convinced my boss to host a Cinco de Mayo party at work/went to a new music venue to see KB's friend play/pulled an all-nighter with said friend, KB, and the rugby guy...on a Tuesday!/issued a statement of disappointment about the President's budget/had the most painful bikini wax of my life/flew to Houston and drove over 1,000 miles in four days on my Tour O'Texas: went to a BBQ on my dad's farm/drove to DFW for a wedding/drove back to Houston for Mother's Day brunch/went to Half Price Books and bought way too many books I had to lug back on the plane/hung out with my mom and brother/drove to Austin to booze with friends/drove back to Houston just in time to get on a plane/found a cool new bar in Adams Morgan with Tom, Reed, Erin, and Lauren/had a fabulous performance evaluation at work/had my first happy hour on a patio of the season/almost got into a bar fight to backup my friend D/roadtripped to Brooklyn for a party and found a great afterhours spot/almost bought a massive Rice Krispies Treats Sheet from a 7-11 at 5:30am/went back to The Mug for the first time in almost a year.

Whew! Now I'm home for a bit. I still haven't unpacked from my travels, but that's on my to-do list for this three-day weekend. 

Sunday, April 19, 2009

My Week in Review

  • Last Sunday, KB and I hosted a fabulous Easter lunch
  • I made it back to the gym more than once this week
  • Got an overwhelmingly great response to the launch of my fetus blog
  • Fun nights with my DC boys Reed and Tom--even ended up at a strip club (hilarious story for another time)
  • Three nights of boozing in a row and no drunk texting...or at least no texts I regret
  • Finally got to meet KB's gay husband
  • I found $20 on the ground at the liquor store

  • Sunday's festivities led to a nasty hangover Monday morning
  • My washer flooded part of my apartment Tuesday night

Monday, April 13, 2009

Follow Fowler's Fetus

I work in a very unique environment. It’s the kind of place where everyone knows what type of birth control everyone else is taking; there are diagrams of the female reproductive system all around; and it’s not uncommon to see pregnancy tests or contraceptive sponges on the table in the lunchroom free for the taking. I have a plastic (unused) speculum in my office (from a session I attended on how to do your own cervical exam) and there are condoms and lube I gathered at coalition events in my desk organizer.

We tend to get a variety of interesting materials in the course of our work, and there are a number of small plastic fetus models floating around the office. We got them during our research on Crisis Pregnancy Centers. One of my former co-workers used to hide her plastic fetuses for others to find; my fetus usually rests in a tray of jumbo paperclips on my desk. Sometimes when I’m deep in thought or reading, I play with it like a little stress ball.

I was watching this AT&T commercial the other day where the father goes on a business trip and sends his daughter back at home pictures of her stuffed monkey around NYC. I decided to put my own little twist on the commercial and started taking pictures of my fetus model all around and posting them to a new blog. At first I kept it pretty quiet, made the page private, and invited just a few people who I knew would be entertained. I wasn’t sure if everyone that reads this blog in its various forms (blogger, myspace, facebook) would appreciate the fetus humor. Hell, I’m still not sure, but I have shared it with enough people who have found it hilarious that I thought I would share. If you don’t like it, don’t look. It’s fairly new, but the Easter pics are pretty humorous. Check them out.

Who Needs Cadbury Eggs When You Have Champagne?

Easter lunch was fantastic! Great food, tons of champagne (next time we are getting a case), and some of the most amazing and delightful people I know. Hands down the *best* Easter I have ever had! I've been thinking a lot lately about the concept of "urban family," and I really want to embrace it more this year. DC really is home and it's the home of my choosing, and yesterday I spent a holiday with the "family" of my choosing.

In addition to a nasty hangover (thanks, Easter Bunny!), I woke up to this email from one of the attendees:

I want to thank you for probably the best Easter I have had since I was a kid. I had so much fun. Too much in fact. I definitely blacked out last night, forgot to walk my dog last night and woke up in my clothes at 6am. Disaster! Please let me know if I did anything stupid or if I need to apologize for anything. And thanks again for an awesome time.

P.S. I definitely almost puked on the bus on the way to work this morning.

Totally made my day. And being "urban family" means never having to apologize for any stupid thing you might have done or said after too much champagne.

Bring on the advil and H2O...

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Reason #103 why it's great to be single...

One of the things I enjoy most about being single is being able to do whatever I want and not answer to anyone. No one is annoyed if I sleep all day; no one is waiting on me to make plans; no one is upset if I am late or difficult.

Today, I slept most of the daylight hours and spent the rest of the day grocery shopping for tomorrow’s Easter feast.

It’s incredible to have this freedom. If I want to aimlessly roam around three different grocery stores (which I did) looking for the perfect ham, I can! I’ve always been a ridiculous shopper. I’m exhausting. I know this about myself, and have always preferred to shop alone—even in high school when going to the mall with your girlfriends is customary.

Now I’m baking a ham and prepping for a fabulous Easter lunch with KB and DC friends. I can’t wait til tomorrow—I’m so excited!

Friday, April 10, 2009

Don't Box me in!

Lately I seem to be bombarded with relationship talk, and it has me thinking about the different boxes we get put into in other people’s lives: the friend box, the fling box, the girlfriend box, the Friday night sex girl box. Sometimes we get to negotiate our box, and other times we just wake up in a box and wonder how we got there. Sometimes you take the box you can get now and hope for an upgrade. (I don’t really believe in boxes, so of course I think you can transcend them! I’ve never been good at compartmentalizing my life—I am ruled by my emotions and I like all aspects of my life to mingle together, messy and connected.)

Many people have made a career and written a lot of books telling women all the rules they should follow to avoid certain boxes. In fact, KB just received such a book in the mail from her mom last week. It’s not a new concept, and I understand the logic. However, I just find much of it to be a great big o’game—one I don’t really have the desire or willpower to play.

I was talking to my brother last week and I was amazed at how logically and practically he approaches dating. He recently met a girl and although she was great and he was interested, there were several reasons why they shouldn’t get involved—including some professional entanglements. So he very matter-of-factly declined, put her in the friend box, and moved on. I’m just not that practical or rational! Like most other areas of my life, I approach dating with emotions and abandon. No matter what the odds or reasons why I shouldn’t, I find myself wanting to go for it. Hey, why not?

I just can’t seem to escape these conversations lately. Every TV show, movie, or chat with a friend keeps leading back to the topic of defining relationships. Are we just friends? Are we more? Is he just not that into me? Come to think of it, we’ve been doing it most of our lives. Do you like me? Check the box for yes, no, or maybe. It’s just more intense these days and at times R-rated—if not parental guidance, then some other guidance would be greatly appreciated.

Monday, April 6, 2009

A Day for the Books

Anyone that talked to me last summer, especially in August, knows I had to take on a grueling project for work that definitely was not the highlight of my year! My organization was working on a second edition to our textbook, and even though we had a team of editors and contributors, my team and I were tasked with a sizable amount of formatting, editing, and manuscript preparation. This job is usually handled by our Training and Education Department, but their director was out on maternity leave and it fell to me. I had a great team helping me and by the end, all of us hated the project.

But all the hard work paid off when advance copies arrived at my office today. At first, I really wasn’t that affected by their arrival. I didn’t want to look for fear of seeing an error that it was too late to correct. But as the day went on, I started flipping through the book. I even used it this afternoon to look something up. It is a great resource already!

On another book related note, I looked at a friend’s Kindle today. I have been on the fence about Kindles, because I really, really love books. I love the way they feel in my hands and the way they smell. Today I even took a big whiff of the new textbook. Although I do get most of my news online, I still have a special place in my heart for newspapers. Instead of becoming a crazy cat lady, I have always thought I would be a crazy single lady with a house full of stacks and stacks of newspapers. 

I just can’t get completely behind the idea of the wireless reading device. My friend (the Kindle owner) said he doesn’t love books and newspapers any less post-Kindle, but it is just so convenient. I admit, I do see the appeal for commuting, and it was pretty cool. Maybe by Christmas I’ll be completely sold.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Road Trip to VA

I’m so sleepy after a whirlwind road trip deep into Virginia, but it was definitely worth it. I took off yesterday afternoon, hopped in my car and headed out of the city. Traffic was absolutely insane. These days, the extent of my driving is a few miles to the grocery store a couple of times a month, and I forgot how much I hate traffic. Hats off to all my comrades in Texas who sit through that kind of thing every day on their commutes. No way I could do that!

A friend from out of town was in Chesapeake for work and I went to hang out for the night. He was there in Feb and we went to Virginia Beach and had a crazy night that resulted in me stripping down and running into the Atlantic Ocean in 40-degree weather. What can I say? I love the ocean.

Well last night, I stayed out of the water, but still had a great night. We hung out at a cool little bar that served sweet tea vodka and ended up staying so late that most of the restaurants were closed (welcome to suburbia) so we had to order Chinese food with the really cool bartender and have it delivered to the bar. For some reason I was so amused by this. I guess, because it was such a fabulous and different way to spend a Wednesday. Sure beats sitting on my bed alone watching my Sex and City DVDs and not sleeping. I love nights like last night. I seem to specialize in these types of rapid trips and random moments. I think it’s important to take every chance to do the things and see the people you want…even if it’s only for a few hours.

Plus, I got Sonic on the way home today. The closest one is in Fredericksburg, about 40 minutes from DC. Yeah for tater tots and a vanilla Coke!

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Have a thick skin, Cancer

In the course of some actual work, I was on the Toronto Star website and stumbled across my horoscope for today:

Cancer (June 22 — July 22)
The current cosmic climate makes it essential to have a thick skin and a lot of stamina. Remain focused on your goals and a certain melodrama will lose its power.

Not sure how reliable it is, given it's Canadian and all...but I think the cosmic significance of these things surpasses national borders.

In any case, it's pretty appropriate. I've been letting a couple of drama-filled situations get me down, and I need to toughen up and get over them. The subhead of the horoscope page was even: Have a thick skin, Cancer.

I guess someone wanted me to get the message.

Monday, March 30, 2009

Lovely Lady (and Lady Parts) News

Real Lady News: Texas A&M to add Women's Studies Degree

Whoop! Look at my alma mater go!

Via The Battalion (my former employer):

The Board of Regents has approved the establishment of the Bachelor of Arts degree program in women's and gender studies at its March 26 and March 27 meetings. Approximately six students will be enrolled in the first year of the major, rising to 18 students in five years. In November 2008, 42 students were enrolled in the women's studies minor. According to the proposal, the program is designed to allow students to increase their research and critical-thinking skills, provide an in-depth study of gender from social science and humanities perspective and encourage students to look beyond their own culture and era in understanding the role of gender in shaping society. The proposal is in line with Vision 2020, with all of Texas A&M's college peers except one offering a women's and gender studies program. The program will be interdisciplinary, but will continue to be administered by the College of Liberal Arts. It will require completion of 120 hours.
Fake Lady News: Renowned Hoo-Ha Doctor Wins Nobel Prize For Medical Advancements Down There

The world's foremost authority on ailments down south, Dr. Victoria Lazoff led a team of cutting-edge hoo-ha doctors to develop new strategies for detecting abnormal growth in...you know, that area. The accomplished physician humbly accepted medicine's highest honor before a crowd of her peers, and spoke about the importance of regular screenings to prevent unnecessary complications up inside one's business...

"...We should be encouraging an open dialogue with our young women, one that isn't constrained by some outdated facade of 1950s morality," Lazoff said to a crowd of people looking down at their shoes. "I cannot say this clearly enough: Ladies, please, make an appointment to get your annual [looksie-doo], especially if you are [seeing a fella] or have experienced pain or sensitivity in your['Hello, my baby! Hello, my darling! Hello, my ragtime gal!']."

Monday, March 23, 2009

Don't jump!

This weekend I took the bus up to NYC to meet up with my sister. She was there with her church for spring break and had a free day Friday. It was great to see her, and the second time this year we have been able to meet up outside of Houston and a holiday or official family event.

After an exhausting day of walking Friday, we slept in Saturday morning. As I was getting ready, my sister opened the window and sat on the ledge to enjoy the beautiful day. About 15 minutes later, she was helping me straighten my hair when someone started beating on the door. I was sitting there in just a t-shirt, and even though I assumed it was one of the girls from my sister’s group, I decided to put on pants (good move!). As I was zipping up my jeans, about six NYPD officers stormed our room. Apparently, someone in the apartment building across the way had thought my sister was a jumper and called it in. Needless to say they were a little annoyed with us and lectured us about how “you can’t do that kind of thing in New York City.” I guess they really thought we were a couple of bumpkins from Texas.

It was pretty entertaining; I wish I could have gotten a picture of my sister talking to the cops, but they were already pretty upset and I didn’t think they would be amused.

Monday, March 16, 2009

The Little Weekend That Could

This was one of those weekends where I didn’t have big plans, but things just happened and it was actually one of the most fun DC weekends I have had in awhile.

Friday, I went to an iMovie class at the Apple Store and am now completely coveting iLife 09. Afterward, I ended up staying at work longer than I planned (pretty typical for me) and by the time I got home, I really just wanted to stay in (pretty atypical for me). However, I had agreed to meet a friend for a drink later so I eventually got dressed and headed out. It was pretty chill, but a good time. Ran into a girl I used to live with in a group house when I first moved here, and found out one of the other roommates is pregnant – which makes like the 10th person I know that is preggers right now. Man, it has reached epidemic proportions! As usual, last call came way too soon and I reluctantly went home even though I wanted to keep the party going.

Saturday, I went to watch my friend and former neighbor play rugby at this cool park by the airport with KB. Even though it was rainy and cold, it was fun to go to the match. Growing up in Texas, I never knew anyone who played rugby or saw a match until I moved to DC, and now I am learning. We decided to go grab just one drink (famous last words) with the team at their sponsor bar. Five or so doubles later, our Saturday night (although early) was in full swing. Next thing I knew I was filling a Gatorade bottle I had in my purse with the remainder of my vodka and ginger and taking it and the party on the road. We were headed to another bar with one of KB’s high school friends, but I ended up grocery shopping, which is never a good plan when you are drunk. I got home with very random items (avocados, Frosted Flakes, pot roast) and without most of the things I actually needed from the store. What a hot mess! To make the night more interesting, I also spent a fair amount of time on facebook and texting…that was nice to go back through and read this morning…

I ended up passing out in front of the TV while I ate a frozen dinner and woke up about 2 am, when I spilled a glass of coke I was holding in my lap. Interesting texts (some replies from my drunken messages and other random, unsolicited ones) kept coming and entertained me until I passed out again around 6am. So much for getting my body back on a regular schedule…

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

So we meet again...

Yesterday I found myself in familiar territory…in a place I once loved, where I used to commute every day, and a place that changed my life. That magical place is Manhattan. It was interesting being back for the first time in four years. It was a strange feeling to exit the train at Penn Station and make the walk I made so many times in 2005 when I used to work in the city. The whole day was sort of déjà vu. It all reminded me of my time there, which sadly was the worst time of my life so far. I hate that so many bad feelings are tied to a place I dreamed of living my whole life. I hate that New York is in a way tainted because the time I spent there was just so damn bad.

At the time, everything sounded perfect and I thought I had managed to make all my dreams come true and so early in the grand scheme of my life. I was finally living with my boyfriend of four years and thought we were on the path to getting married, I had taken a stand with my family, I was living on the East Coast and had landed a writing job in NYC. But my how things aren’t always what they seem. Within a few months it all unraveled and taught me a lot about what I really wanted and what actually made me happy. For that, I look back on New York fondly.

Yesterday, I returned to the city in a totally different –and thankfully much happier place in life. I was attending a meeting for a job that I truly love and returning home to a cozy apartment I adore and share with the #1 male in my life, my dog in DC. I also stayed in NYC and had dinner with an old friend from college and it was fabulous! New York will always be a place where I learned much about life and myself and I hope a place where I will soon have many good memories to outshine all those less than fabulous ones from 2005.

Sunday, March 8, 2009

This Coughing May Kill Me

It’s been a terrible week. Last Sunday night I started feeling sick and it sidelined me the entire week. I didn’t go to work; I barely left the house, and most days I didn’t really get out of bed. I’ve been the sickest I think I have ever been in my life. It has been miserable. I managed to make it to the doctor Tuesday only to learn I had a virus that had to run its course. My body aches from coughing and I have been going absolutely stir crazy. While I do embody many of the characteristics of a Cancer (emotional, loving, intuitive, imaginative, shrewd, cautious, protective, sympathetic, and moody) the homebody part is not one of them.

It’s times like these when I wish I had a roommate…or maybe that I had had a child a few years back that could bring me more juice or another pillow - I know my mom used to use us for that. If only I had planned a little better...or rather not planned my parenthood so well, then I’d have someone here to help me. ☺ Oh well.

I finally feel a bit better today. I just want to get back to work and out of this house.

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Hey, why not?

Every good buzz has to end. Man, I really hate that! I’ve spent the last week traveling and now the high of seeing great friends and interesting places is slowly giving way to the sobering return of my routine.

I didn’t make any resolutions this year per se, but I did make a list (which I am continually adding to) of things I would like to accomplish or integrate into my life this year. One of those things was to travel more for fun and not just to attend weddings back in Texas. I’ve also been adopting the motto, “why not?” It is just so often the correct response when presented with a new challenge or opportunity.

So I put my money where my mouth is and purchased a ticket to pop down to Austin to see a show with my sister. It all just seemed perfect. A singer/songwriter that my sister and I both love and have seen in concert was playing at my friend’s bar. I just couldn’t pass it up.

I really regret that I didn’t spend more time in Austin when I lived in Texas. Blame my Aggie brainwashing (all that orange hurts my eyes!!!) or my student worker salary or the fact I spent most of my time trekking to Dallas, but I really missed out. I have had such amazing times in my visits to Austin over the last couple of years – just great people and such personality.

Austin alone would be divine, but I decided to couple it with a trip to San Francisco to surprise my best friend for her baby shower. At first it seemed a little crazy and I hate to admit that I felt like I needed someone’s permission before I booked such an itinerary. Then my sister said something great to me, she said having that kind of freedom is “the beauty of my life.” This means a lot coming from my sister because I know she doesn’t aspire to have my kind of life. In fact, she probably sees me as a cautionary tale. However, I do have a flexible job, sustainable income, and no kids or husband to consider so why shouldn’t I just hop on a plane (or several) and go where I want to go? [insert Why not? here]

I must admit it was a great idea and a fabulous time! I was able to see some old friends, including my best friend from junior high school whom I hadn’t seen in 10 years! The show was great and I always have fun with my friends in Austin, including a growing crew of bartenders from DC.

San Fran was great as well and it was lovely to see my friend all glowing and pregnant. I got back on a redeye this morning and should have rested today, but instead I have been fighting sleep like a five-year-old the night before Christmas. I couldn’t help but feel a little let down today when I got home and the party was over. Hopefully tomorrow I’ll shake off this travel hangover and be ready to go full throttle into a short workweek and weekend back in DC!

Monday, February 2, 2009

25 Random Things About Me...

This note has reached epidemic proportions on Facebook. I've played along and posted it on my profile, but I found it entertaining to compile so I'm including it here as well, sans the Facebook re-posting instructions:

1. I love all things purple – I even have a purple rose tattooed on my lower back.

2. Listening to live music is my idea of a perfect night. I love all kinds. As far as big names go, Dave Matthews is my favorite (yes Tom, I know you don’t approve), but I also drag people to see artists they haven’t heard of yet.

3. To go along with #2, I also have a thing for men who play the guitar.

4. Like several of my ladies have already said, I also can really dance for a white girl. I have my own private dance parties at home…yes sometimes even in front of the mirror.

5. True to my Texas roots, I love Blue Bell Ice Cream, Whataburger, Freebirds, and I put jalapenos on almost everything. I could also eat fajitas and drink margaritas every day.

6. Few things in life affect me like the ocean. I love being by the ocean and have spent some amazing times on beaches with my girlfriends Cory, Nicci, and Shawna. I wish we were better about making the yearly trips we promised we would make when we were 18.

7. I am not a morning person…at all! I really wish I could change that about myself. It’s pretty miserable.

8. I don’t think you need a reason to pop open a bottle of champagne.

9. I am insanely afraid of mice and rats, which is unfortunate given my affinity for living in cities where I have to see them scurrying around all the time.

10. The year after I graduated college, I was able to accomplish my lifelong dream of working in Manhattan. I absolutely loved the city, but the actual job left a lot to be desired and ultimately did not work out, but I am very happy for the time I spent there.

11. I am a proud Fightin’ Texas Aggie and have fun telling all my friends here about all our traditions. Gig ‘em!

12. I’m close to my siblings, especially my brother Mark. He understands me better than anyone else. Even though we don’t live in the same place, we talk every day and I tell him everything (even things I am sure he wishes I would not tell him!).

13. I am a little obsessed with “Sex and the City” and even have a Pomeranian named Mr. Big. I HATE when people call it “ Sex IN the City.”

14. I was raised in a very strict Southern Baptist family and was very active in church, and now I work for a national pro-choice group.

15. I have always been petrified of singing in front of people.

16. When I was 13, my mom let me be in the room when she gave birth to my youngest brother Joey. It gave me a greater love and respect for her, but talk about great birth control!

17. I'm half Irish and I like to put o' in front o'things.

18. I am very crafty. I make gift baskets, diaper cakes, and even elaborate edible cakes (although I don’t really enjoy making and icing real cakes and only do it for people who are REALLY special to me!).

19. I hate blow-drying my hair. I have started treating myself to blowouts from time to time. I also hate ironing clothes.

20. I have a remarkable memory – it is both a blessing and a curse!

21. I don’t like beer – and yes, I have tried different kinds and no, you are not going to change my mind with your favorite brew. Vodka and whiskey suit me just fine!

22. When I am bored, stressed, or anxious I pick my fingers. My grandfather says the condition of my hands is a reliable indicator of how happy I am in my life. To this day, he always looks at my hands before he asks me how I am doing.

23. I am blessed to have my dream job right now and am frankly a bit of a workaholic…and I’m not going to apologize about that!

24. I think sweet tea is the nectar of the gods.

25. Someone once described me as being more spice than sugar.