Monday, December 29, 2008

2008 in Review

Let me sum up the year, in bullet points as only I can.

--2008, despite a lot of mud in my face, was a Year of Landry. Yeah, not everything went as planned, but seriously... what does? I learned a lot about myself, dated some interesting people, learned so much about who my true friends are, and did a shit ton of traveling. So while the Justin thing was awful, and I feel in a rut about my job... I'd chock this one up as a win.

--I really like traveling. I went to Nashville, St. Louis, Cleveland, and will be ending the year in Maine. And they were all awesome. It's pricey, and takes a lot out of you, but I say go traveling.

--I got a lot of great CDs. Arcade Fire, Yael Naim, Sigor Ros, Santogold, Ludo, and probably tomorrow I'll be getting Fleet Foxes, MGMT, and Belle and Sebastian. That being said...

--...not nearly enough movies! Wall-E, Dark Knight, and Iron Man top my list. Also big props to Persepolis. But yeah, nothing's left me blown away so far. Hoping to catch a ton in January.

--I love my apartment. Roommate switch up in the middle, but that just proved to me how much I love my apartment, and that Salem is pretty cool for now.

--Erin is the best friend and travel partner ever. We spent a week together traveling for Tim's wedding, and she's helped me out through a ton of stuff this year. It goes both ways, obviously. But she's the sister from another mister I've been looking for. Same goes to Aimee, Shana, and Jess.

--I will be spending the next 10 years at weddings. Two this past summer, and two already on the horizon. Eeeesh it's a good thing I have several cocktail dresses.

--I have great work friends. The Bay/Zumi's crowd is awesome. I am lucky.

--NEVER DATE MUSICIANS. No explanation needed.

Predictions for 2009? Jess thinks it'll be even more awesome. I have to agree with her. I have a feeling there's some awesome in the wind.

Saturday, December 27, 2008


Well, I've done it again. I've survived another marathon of a holiday.

I think I've mentioned this before, but what they don't tell you when your mom and dad divorce is that every major holiday expands. Or rather, every family-oriented holiday expands. Thanksgiving turned into three, as did Christmas. I'm looking forward to MLK Jr. Day, as that'll be spent by my lonesome. While I do love my family, by the time holiday #3 rolls around, I am beat.

Christmas Eve brought the dysfunctional at my dad's. Lots of awkward conversations, medium-tasty food, and all that. Great to see my cousin Amanda, though. Brianna, my... well, I guess stepsister, was in true form.

Then back to my mom and Leo's for Christmas. Christmas morning was very nice and relaxing. Then we all headed to the Gorrell/Flory compound in the afternoon. Very fun, but also busy. The Cousins got a Wii, which lead to my mom Wii boxing... which is HILARIOUS. I'll be posting photos of that soon. All the cousins are good and doing well. We also had our crazy DVD Yankee Swap. I brought Persepolis and came back with Elf. So not bad.

Boxing Day was a day of rest. At night I went out with some high school friends and went to a bar... which turned into High School Reunion. Saw tons of people I haven't seen in ages, which was both good and bad. Also ran into Beeman friends, which was surreal but also good. Last time I saw many of them I was 9... and now we're all 24/25 and drinking together. So that was good.

Today was Jegs Family Christmas, which was a lot of activity and energy for a few hours, and then they all leave. So again, quite busy and all over. Then Mom, Leo, and I relaxed at night, which was MUCH needed. Phew!

So I made it through all Christmases. Sunday I hope to check out that yarn store in Gloucester, meet up with more friends for dinner, and get ready for the work day.

Monday, December 22, 2008


So Dustin let me run in the middle of the day to the Northshore Mall to try and get a gift card. Sadly, that resulted in an epic fail, since everyone else had a similar idea and so the traffic was horrific. I did get a lot of shopping done at Newbury Comics, though. I was able to knock off the rest of Erin, the twins, and The Miches. Part of me was telling myself "just make them things and save money" but then I realized that the time for that was months ago. I think next year will be more of a homemade Christmas.

All of this does not result in the craziness. No, that involves a random run-in I had with a high school classmate. I was wandering around trying to think what to get Danielle when I looked up and there was a girl I went to high school with and her baby. It was bizarre. She looked, first off, FANTASTIC for having a 4-month-old baby. I was a little jealous, as I've seen the women in my family, and it will not be pretty if I ever get to that point.

We then did the "what are you up to?" and "who do you still talk to?" stuff. And the whole time I'm thinking this:

Wow! WOW! I went to high school with this girl, and at the time we had a ton in common... but now, almost 7 years later, our lives have diverged greatly. She has been married for 5 years, has a baby, and a house, and all that. I can't keep a boyfriend for more than 3 months, but have a good job, a Bachelor's Degree from a very good college, an active social life, and live in a city on my own (relatively speaking). Neither one is right or wrong, but just so different.

It's also odd to think that we're that old that all these things make sense for both of us. Just crazy.

But yes. Great to see her, but also left me thinking "how is it that my high school classmates are married with kids?! Wasn't I in high school like five minutes ago??"

I will say, I kind of can't wait for Christmas to be over, since all this purchasing and gearing up always stresses me out. It's one of my least favorite holidays, since it's so based on commercialism and stuff. I wish there was less focus on that, and more on family and what this day means. Alas... I'm sounding a little bit like Linus right now.
A series of texts between me and my friend Brian about our friend (to save his identity, we'll call him Glenn) and his engagement.

Glenn's listed as engaged on fb. Epic fail!
Brian: Looooooooooool. Epic life commitment fail!
Me: Hear that? That's the sound of Glenn's manhood leaving forever.
Brian: It's as if a thousand voices called out and were suddenly silenced.
Me: Well played star war reference!
Brian: The Jedis felt that one for sure.
Me: The entire galaxy will be feeling this one for quite some time.

Yep, we're nerds who compare an engagement to Alderon blowing up.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Songs for this snow day

Fleet Foxes, White Winter Hymnal

Arcade Fire, Neighborhood #1 (Tunnels)

Dr. Dog, My Old Ways

Saturday, December 20, 2008

And if the snow buries my, my neighborhood

A winter bike in front of Pampelmousse. So lovely!

I decided to take a walk around downtown and get one of my beloved lattes from The Gulu Gulu Cafe. I also wanted to see how Salem looked in the snow. I shoveled out my car, and unfortunately Dean the neighbor had not plowed our driveway yet. So I tried to shovel as best as I could, but got stuck in a snow bank. Chris from the first floor told me that his brother plows, so if worst comes to worst, we could hire him to help us out. Then when I got stuck in said bank, he pushed me out and told me how to get out of the bank. So I bought him some beer tonight. Who doesn't love beer, right?

Then I got downtown and about 5 minutes in realized that snow boots are not a maybe, but a necessity. Esp. in New England. Salem was beautiful today. No one was around, so it was so nice. I felt very energized and refreshed, since it's nice to enjoy my town without a ton of tourists and locals around. Photos of this are at the bottom, along with my beautiful latte from Gulu Gulu. So tasty and glorious. Not many people were there today, but per usual... serviced sucked. It's a good thing I want to be a cool hipster and will tolerate lack of service!

Then I sucked it up and went to the mall to start my Christmas shopping. Tons of people were there, but I knocked a few people off of my list. And by a few, I mean... I bought winter boots for myself and some hand cream. So that gets a fail. I'll have to head up there tomorrow or Monday to get the gift cards I wanted and some other stuff.

Then I came back here, got eggs, and made... MATZO BALL SOUP!! I've been brainstorming this bad boy for weeks. And let me tell you, it was totally worth it. Sooo tasty. Here is a photo of my soup... and me drinking Kahlua. It warmed my soul.

Now I'm continuing the domesticity with some shortbread cookies, more Kahlua, and knitting. I love being snowed in by myself!

Downtown, from I believe the front of Rockafellas. I was impressed at how many cars were driving around, but when I started walking there weren't many people walking around.
Delicious, delicious latte.

Matzo Ball Soup! Matzo balls in a chicken broth with carrots, parsley, and celery. I think the next time I may need to make smaller matzo balls. But this is my first time, and I think it's great. I have a ton of leftovers, so I might lightly grill them in a pan and then put them in a soup. I also love how my camera captures the steam coming up from my soup! So cool!

Friday, December 19, 2008

Sums up the post-photos blizzard

Just saw my roommate's boyfriend not wearing pants. So I told Tim this via IM:

Me: I just saw Sarah's boyfriend not wearing pants.
Tim: All of Ann's roommates...well all one of them have seen me in such a state.
Tim: Also I'm drunk.
Me: Neither of these things surprise me.

Disregard last year... this time, we REALLY mean that this is the storm of the century

At right, me just getting home from work early at 3pm for THE STORM OF THE CENTURY. OOOOOOOO AAAAAAA PANIC!!!!

So I'm sitting at home enjoying another snow storm. I really don't mind being snowed in, nor do I flip out. It seems, though, that everyone else in New England freaks the hell out about snow. I spent a lot of time this afternoon watching Storm Coverage, which is news casters rehashing the storm. "Oh my God, it's still snowing... I'm still on the side of this highway freezing my ass off..."

Why is it that every storm is the worst and filled with hyperbole and freaking out? I know you need to create news, and in this day and age, that means drama, but seriously? Don't report on nothing, and don't try to hype people up into freaking out. It's snow. It falls every year. Just be smart on the roads and keep your houses warm.

This DJ in Boston has made the same joke two years in a row, but it's very accurate "It's a snow storm, let's all run out to the store and buy milk and bread for your fat children". And sure enough, on my drive home, Shaw's was chaos with people trying to buy groceries. There was a line onto the street of people trying to get in. I made mistake of going last year during that blizzard where it took 2 hours to get home... insanity in the store. People running around with staples and what not. I went last night, and still nuts... but not as bad.

Sarah, my roommate, started dating a guy. Much to my surprise, it seems he's also hunkering down with us for the weekend. Ohhhh to always manage to find roommates with boyfriends so you're a third wheel in your own apartment.

I managed to get home in about 45 minutes, with the roads only getting bad in Salem. I must say, I think I'm pretty good at driving in bad weather thanks to all these storms and having to get to work. Granted, I did hydroplane and total a minivan one winter, but other than that... smooth sailing.

Tomorrow it's supposed to die down, which is good. I am supposed to have a Christmas Party in Cambridge tomorrow, but I'm concerned about the roads and parking, so I may need to bail. If that's the case, I might trek to Beverly to hang out with Crystal and her posse.

I took a walk to get away from the love birds and to also take some photos of the neighborhood. Usually it is hopping on a Friday night at 9pm around here, but it's very much a ghost town tonight.

I'm standing in the middle of Jefferson, taking a shot of the street with no cars coming. As you can see, not a very good job at plowing, but still not terrible.

On Arthur, looking up the street to the neighbors. The flash is on, so you can see it's still snowing.

At 3, when it was just beginning to pick up. Now plowing yet, nor will there be for a bit. But still, not all that bad.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Cute animals

No griping today, even though I'm stressed by work and getting sick.

No, today I am posting a very cute picture I saw someone else post on Facebook. It's a Mama hippo with a baby hippo. It warms my heart with its cuteness.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Blogger Guilt

From Thanksgiving to now, it's been bat shit crazy! And I keep thinking "man, I should post something", but then I'm so tired or sick of looking at a computer monitor, that I don't want to. So I don't.

Well, it's already the middle of December! What have I been up to?

Training, training, training!
As part of my job, I need to learn more about other databases and interfaces. I have absolutely no clue how and when this will come into play, but I've been living in conference rooms many hours a day for the last two weeks. Fortunately the two people who are getting trained in this full time are awesome and really nice and my age. We all agreed today that we're glad we're in this together. I'll be glad when next Monday comes, since I won't have as many meetings to take up my time.

I also found out I will be learning a new analysis/coding language next year as part of my job. It'll be good to learn this, since it'll look amazing on my resume. I'm worried about time stuff, but I'll figure that out later. And maybe when I have no time, they'll actually take some things off of my plate!

I definitely think my job is still a catch all for all the stuff in the department no one wants to do, but I'm realizing that this will not change, so I need to make it change for myself.

Roommate Sarah is dating someone?!
It's true. Sarah has a gent. His name is Matt. He's good people.

As for me...
Still single, so it's not like I've been busy in THAT realm of my personal life.

General whining about my other friends being busy
The inner posse is, pretty much, all in happy relationships, so they haven't been around much. Which is annoying, since I've been spending a lot of time by myself as a result, or as a third wheel. Trying hard not to get down because of it, or to keep myself busy and active. It's hard, but I soldier on.

Craft fair = BIG success
I'll post pictures soon, but w00t!

Is it Christmas yet?
No, better yet... is it NYE yet???

Yep, that's all.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Who doesn't love a good ol' Rick Rolling on Thanksgiving?

God bless you, Rick Astley and the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade:

Sunday, November 23, 2008

A busy (but great!) Saturday

I finally had my dreaded 30,000 miles service appointment on Saturday. My friend Crystal was extremely nice and generous with her time, so she went with me for the day. We dropped the car off at 9am, then walked to Alewife, took the train to Harvard Sq, then spent the entire day hanging out in coffee shops and book stores.

I was shocked that she wanted to come. Not that Crystal isn't nice, or that I am boring or whatever, but it was a long day being tied to a place because of my car, and it's just a lot of time waiting. But she did, and I am very grateful for that. It was good to have some one-on-one time and a partner in crime while trekking all over.

The car is fine, though they need to replace part of the suspension since it's waring prematurely. Not a safety risk, and free as it's under my warranty, but a pain that I need to head back there in a week or two. That should only be an hour, though.

We ended up finding a lot of neat coffee shops, as well as getting the yarn for Sam's Christmas gift, some adorable buttons, and I almost finished one of my Craft Fair mittens. And we talked a lot. Stuff we were going through, observations, family stuff. Random crap, too. It was really great.

Our timing was a bit off, as it was the weekend for the Harvard-Yale Football game, so the square was a cluster fuck of alums and current students of both schools, all decked out in their finest school gear. And as it was freezing cold, they had taken over every coffee shop we went to to stay warm and get something warm to drink. Once the game started, it was enough time for us to grab some turf before many people came back after freezing their asses off outside for awhile.

At the end of the day, we headed back to the North Shore. I made some dinner for myself and waited until Brad came to visit. Brad and I used to work together, and we kept in touch after he left in May. It was soooo good to see him. I really miss him. He's a good pal, and we have a great rapport. We met another coworker, Carrie, and all of her neighbor friends (or as Brad and I agreed with, her MILF neighbors) and we saw a cover band in a bar. We couldn't afford to drink, so a very fun and sober night.

Today I plan on keeping a low profile and catching up on laundry, movies, knitting, paying bills, and the like.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Are you kidding me? Seriously?

Ohhh AIM, how you manage to cause so many problems sometimes.

So because I'm at a tech company, and sometimes it's easier to be on IM to ask each other questions than get up from our desks to do it (maybe it's not the tech company part, but the "we're lazy" party?) I have a few key home/college friends on my buddy list to chat with when I'm at work. This also includes... exboyfriend Justin.

I clicked on his name today to see what was his deal (he is almost never on) and it said something like "Singer songwriter extraordinaire, teacher, bartender... homeowner?"

And I thought... are you kidding me?

Not that I'm sour grapes, but he's buying a house? He has his life that much more together, or at least his finances as well all know that perhaps his personal life is a shambles, that he could feasibly buy a house? I also realize that doesn't have car loans, probably very small student loans, lives in Central Mass, and has cheaper rent, but how is this possible?

I feel like things somehow come very easy for him from time to time. Or maybe this is just the wake up call for me to get my finances in order so that I can also try to swing these unreachable things. I don't know.

It's not that I do not want things to come easy for him, or for him to be miserable all the time, but I also don't want to feel like I'm living paycheck to paycheck, and he can make these investments. I don't know, it caught me off guard.

I talked to Tim about it, and I quote:

Me: It just blows my mind
Me: Maybe he has a sugar mama
Me: Like a cougar
Tim: Oh I bet he does
Tim: Except not a MILF cougar
Tim: A bad kind of cougar

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Crunch Time

So I am a knitter, and I signed up to display at my work's craft fair. This is on 12/5. I am freaking out about this, because I feel like I don't have enough stuff to sell. I currently have roughly:

--4 baby/child hats
--5 women hats
--1 men hat (issue right there)

--2 pairs of mittens (another issue)

--8 scarves or so? Maybe?

I'm working on plowing through finishing a scarf, and then I hope to crank out a man hat or two this weekend. I have several weeks and many wide open evenings coming up, so this will give me some time. I also want to make some fingerless mitts or mittens this weekend, since those are always big sellers. Maybe little kid mittens, but we'll see.

I definitely know that if I do this next year, I'm going to start working on making stuff ASAP. I also hope to be knitting while said fair is going on, though at this point it might just be me making Christmas gifts.

Here's a sampling of the work. There's definitely more stuff than what I'm showing.

Star Mittens. Had these mittens lying around, then decided to add stars to make them interesting.

Fuzzy baby hat. I HATED making this, since the yarn is so difficult to use. There's no shaping, everything looks the same, and there's no give. But as it's insanely soft and machine washable, I know some parent will love it for their little kid. I might add some green fuzzy applique, but we'll see. Or try to cobble together mittens.

Floral hat. I'd love to make more of these before the fair, since they look neat. And very easy to make a simple hat and then add some flowers and vines in scrap yarn. I think I'll also make some ear warmers like the one I made Aimee for her birthday, as those are a super fast knit, cool looking, and easy to add adornments to. I can also probably adjust for kids' heads.

Monday, November 17, 2008

A series of unfortunate texts

So Sam has a very weird college roommate. He spends all night playing WoW, sleeps all day, goes to class, then plays WoW afterwards. Needless to say, Sam is getting tired from all of it.

After I drop Sam off, we exchange the following texts:

Me: Made it back okay.
Sam: Good to hear, I'm still kicking, too.
Sam: Just got back from work [college roommate] is STILL SLEEPING
Me: He needs to rest up for an all-night WoW fest.
Sam: OMFG, I think I'm gonna pee on his laptop
Me: Do it!!
Me: Did the peeing prevent the WoW?
Sam: Prevented WoW, but not Youtube, unfortunately.

Poor guy...

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Another 300 mile weekend

My leasing company will kill me, but I had another 300 mile weekend.

Saturday I drove to Rockport and back for Nikki and Jeff's engagement party. It was pretty good, nice to see people. It was semi formal, which is a lot of "what the hell do I wear???" before going there. Then I spent some time with the rents.

Sunday, out of the blue, I found out Sam was stuck in Rockport and needed a drive back to school, so I offered. I always like having brother bonding with Sam. I want to be a good big sister, and I think I am, but I figure I should take every chance I can get. So it was 5 hours round trip, but good to help out Sam.

We talked a lot about my dad's side of the family, and all the weight of that. We also commented on how there's literally nothing notable or impressive about Massachusetts to the west of 495. Seriously, time forgot about it, and so should we! (I kid... kind of)

I can't wait to see what Cambridge Honda says when I have my service appointment on Saturday. They may kill me for 2 300 mile weekends in two months...

Friday, November 14, 2008

NYE just got a lot more buffoonish

Every New Year's Eve, my theatre friends and I go to some random city and rent a room and hang out. We never see each other, since we're all busy or live all over the country, so it's a great excuse to go somewhere and also see people we don't get to usually.

I love NYE for three reasons: Michnya, Michelle, and Phil. Phil finds us amazing places, and Michnya and Michelle are two of my favorite people from college and they live in Nashville so I don't get to see them nearly enough. Especially now that flights are so pricy.

So Michnya is flying up the night of NYE after work, and I offered to pick him up, since that way I don't have to miss work that day, won't have to drive to Maine alone, and also get to spend a lot of time with Michnya. We figured out flights last night and I am SO EXCITED. Michnya truly is the older brother I never had, so I'm thrilled. As is he.

NYE just got a lot better that I get to spend a lot of time driving around with him. w00t!

Thursday, November 13, 2008

It's been far too long since I've had a whiney, introspective post...

So I left work early today to go home sick and be in bed and sleep. But since I'm checking a few work emails before I head to bed, I thought I'd comment on many random thoughts in my mind:

--I just listened to a podcast from one of my favorite radio shows in Seattle, about how to live in a city when you make no money. It was very interesting, and while I do make more than the people interviewed... it rang eerily true. Definitely understand the stresses and pressures of trying to stretch a dollar, as I have to make paychecks stretch to pay for car loan/car insurance/student loans/utilities/rent/gas/food/paying back the IRS after my company didn't take state taxes out for a year. It's definitely not easy and adds gray hairs to my head. If I worked and lived in the city, I think I wouldn't be in such a pickle, but right now that's jut not feasible.

--I think I'm doing a good job at keeping busy and focused and not thinking about Justin (it's been well over a month, my how time flies!) but there are lapses. Where I feel very lonely and sad. Again, might be that about 85-90% of my friends are in relationships right now, so I constantly feel surrounded by couples. But I also know I need to be patient, it will come when I'm least expecting it, and that I also need to spend this time focusing on myself. I am very happy being me and like the person I am... but sometimes it's nice to share that.

--I'm glad Leo has a job, because that's been a huge stress.

--I haven't spoken to my dad in almost 2 months, and I know at some point the cold war will need to end... but I can't say I won't miss the lack of that constant stress and anxiety in my life.

--Erin and Brian are great friends, and I am so lucky to have them so close by. I wish I lived closer only so I could spend more time with them.

--So many babies coming up! It's strange to think that I've reached the point in my life where engagements and children aren't bizarre. I'll be making tons of hats in the coming months.

--I sometimes wonder if I'll ever see or run into or speak to Justin again, and what I'd actually do when this comes up. Part of me thinks cry, another part of me thinks try to handle it as best as possible. But the biggest truth in all of this is that this instance will probably never come up, since he lives in Worcester and I have pretty much no reason to go there. And I honestly don't know how I feel about all of that.

--When 2 of these bullets are about Justin, I also realize I'm not fooling anyone, I'm not over him, but that I seriously need to be.

--I'm glad Erin is in conclusion with the rest of the world that Chuck is in the Top 10 of the Worst People We Know, if not the Top 5. No sad emoticon for that statement.

--I'm glad I found a group of great Beverly friends, since it's sometimes hard to always go into the city to hang out with people.

--This is a rut, but I know I'll get out of it, feel better, and be better. But ruts suck on the whole!

And on that note, I've officially crashed and will be sleeping this all off, hopefully.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

The 11th hour on the 11th day of the 11th month

The next four months will be spent making hats for babies

I've reached a part of my life when a lot of people I know, or the people associated with the people I know, are having babies. The following hats are in the queue:

--1 hat for coworker
--1 hat for friend's six-month-old baby
--1 hat, 1 blanket for Alissa
--1-2 hats for Ashley's cousin
--many hats for Laura
--possibly hats for another friend who might be pregnant??

Tiny hats for everyone!

Monday, November 10, 2008

Did you ever hear Pete go "Tweet! Tweet! Tweet!" on his piccolo?

Today is my brother's 23rd birthday, so I'm making this post a shout out to Pete. He's good people. We're both very strong personalities, so sometimes we clash, but we both love each other a lot. He's very smart and creative and talented. He also has much better hair than me.


Also, here's me modeling one of the many awesome CDs Pete made me for my trip to Cleveland in August. He decorated each one so they were unique. This one was my favorite, since it was FotC AND had tetris blocks on the album. Wicked awesome.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Let Freedom Ring!

While I am still thrilled about how the election went, there's one little hiccup... Prop 8 in California. As evidenced by a previous blog post, we here at Hot Pants for Shuffleboard are allll about gay rights. I myself am not gay (as evidenced by how many posts have the tag "exboyfriends") but I think that the way this country on the whole treats anyone who is as a sub-par citizen is atrocious and wrong. I am lucky to live in a state where same sex marriage is legal, but the fact that this is NOT universal is wrong and we should be ashamed of ourselves as people.

So when I read about Prop 8 in California, I was livid. Then... when I heard it passed.... I was even MORE livid. IT'S JUST SO WRONG.

Who are you to say, California, that just because a loving, committed, healthy, and working relationship that just so happens to be between two men or two women, it's considered wrong and should be banned from getting the same rights as everyone else.

If you just so happen to be a citizen of that state and voted yes on this... SHAME ON YOU. SHAME ON YOU TENFOLD.

Then I read on a blog I enjoy reading for kicks -- Off Beat Bride -- that there's this thing where blogs can post a picture of them wearing their wedding rings on their middle finger to say F you to Prop 8. Brilliant, as I do have a blog and can easily do this...

...minus the whole wedding ring part. But not dampened by this, I instead just posted a picture with my daisy ring which I wear on that finger, and then the one I wear on my middle finger.

So fuck you, California, Propostion 8, and all the jack asses who voted Yes. LET FREEDOM RING!

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

The Morning After

Not as hungover as I thought I'd be, but that's the magic of coffee, folks.

I also called all of ZERO exboyfriends. Proud day right there.

I'm just so happy and pleased. I feel like this is the first election I was a part of that had so much political weight behind it and that I could see that my voice was heard and see the change happening.

Are all the problems America is facing right now going to go away? No. We have a lot of work ahead of us in the coming months and years, but I think this is a right first step. I feel hopeful and confident that we'll be moving in the right direction.

I'm also glad that this was not an election that was drawn out or contested. It was neatly over and finished by 11pm. I think that also helped not divide the country. We need to be unified.

But now I'm back at work, drinking lots of coffee, and looking forward to pizza and cupcakes tonight for my mom's birthday.

Obama speaks, I have goosebumps, am still crying, and am excited.

I am cozy in bed now, as it's almost midnight. I got up to comment on the speech and upload photos. And I'm still crying.

I love what he had to say about his wife, Michelle. Crying mess there. Maybe it's because of my upbringing, but I love it when I see happily married couples who love and support each other.

I also like how he's making good on his promise to his daughters that if he won, he'd get them a puppy. You know they're thinking "yaaaaaaayyyyyy" in their heads.

I'm also horribly sad that none of his parents or grandparents are alive to this day for him. I know they're watching down on him, but how horribly sad. Especially since his grandmother just died yesterday. But on this day, don't you want your parents and the family closest to you around you to celebrate and embrace this with you? I know he has his wife and daughters and Michelle's family, but I just wish his grandmother could have seen it.

His speech is giving me goosebumps.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

McCain concedes, I flip out

McCain concedes. A nice speech. He's clearly rehearsed it for days.

I'm still crying and flipping out. I've watched history happen. This is incredible. I am without words. I'm also impressed that this was such a blow out. This is incredible.

And you can't see this, but I'm watching on my 18" VCR-attached TV. We bring the class in Salem.

Here's my a crying mess. You can't see that I'm crying as much as I am... but I'm crying. This is such a momentous night, I feel. It's history. I can't be eloquent, because I'm such a mess.

And in my defense, I'm not drunk dialing Andy Lauer tonight. I'm letting him be. So that's a step in the right direction.

My friend Paul who works at a radio station is playing Beautiful Day at midnight. He's very right. This is a beautiful day. I am gushing at all of this.

I may reread this post tomorrow and think "what was I thinking?" but at the time it was a good move. Whoops!


It's a great night. I am close to tears I'm so happy and excited. This might be the alcohol talking, though. Holy crap, I feel insane amounts of joy.

I heard from the Daily Show, which I switched to at 11. It was amazing. I am so proud of my country, not only for getting out to vote in record numbers, but for making this choice.

I'm also thrilled that it's over before midnight, but that might be my lack of sleep talking.

10:26: Obama 207, McCain 129

Drunk self portrait time. I am nervous, but hopeful. And by hopeful, I mean crossing my fingers. I like the lighting for this, though. It's also hides my flushed face very well.

10:14: Obama 207, McCain 129

Feeling the wine, but that's okay! I'm feeling hopeful, but always cautious.

9:29: Obama 195, McCain 70

Mich0012 (9:29:57 PM): it pleases me to see the plump baby-headed visage of karl rove call ohio for obama

Me too!

9:12: Obama 175, McCain 64

This is a milk glass, that was filled, and it's almost done. I'm also chatting with Michnya and Michelle. 2012, we need to have our own political commentary. It'll beat the pants off of NBC.

It's a white wine, if you can't tell. And some and AIM action.

Man, I wish TN wasn't so far away!!

8:51: Obama 103, McCain 34

Chatting with Michnya online. I think if I was drinking, watching it with the Miches, and commenting with them, this would be a wonderful night.

Glass 1 of wine is over. Lush status, here we come!

Also, Michelle is drinking boxed wine. Lushes in MA and TN!

8:28: Obama 82, McCain 34

NPR is acting up, so I switched to

Also, is predicting the following:

70% NO on Question 1. (excellent!)

65% YES on Question 2. (bright colors!)

65% YES on Question 3. (woof!)

Here's WHDH giving local coverage.

I think it's time to crack open some wine. I also hope that NPR's website starts working for my crappy computer.

In other news, Michnya and I are trekking up to NYE together. YAY TRAVEL BUDDY!!

7:47: Cupcakes are made, McCain 8, Obama 3

I'll be updating all night long, I decided. Keep me going and interesting to see how I was faring tonight.

7:47: Cupcakes for Mom's birthday the next day are finished. According to, McCain 8, Obama 3. Beginning of a long night.

Sarah and I also went to get free ice cream at Ben and Jerry's. Had free coffee this morning.

Still feel dread that this will not turn out well, but I think this year is actually ours to win. It should be a memorable night.

Get Mortified

Did you vote yet??? It's a big day. History will be made no matter what, but I hope it's an Obama-tastic day.

Anyways, since I know a lot of the upcoming posts will be political, I wanted to post the latest Get Mortified, which I watch when stressed or need a giggle.

// The Mortified Shoebox Show //

Monday, November 3, 2008

A weekend in review

Worked all day, which included a work potluck. So that was tasty. Got some slack for not dressing up in a costume for work...but I think I made the right move.

Then drove to Bellingham to visit Jaime and Andrew and then celebrate Halloween. Great to see everyone. There are some pictures at the bottom of this of the shenanigans. Oh did I mention there was a hot tub? Yeah... hot tub.

Returned to Salem, which was fortunately left in once piece by Halloween revelers. Then went on a date. Not bad, but definitely no chemistry, so won't be seeing him again. I have MANY thoughts on dating again, but certainly not for this blog. On my drive home, stopped by Erin and Brian's house, and we played Wii sports for awhile and watched The Cosby show and drank beer. So that was good.

Met up with some friends in Beverly, and that was so much fun! Very chill. Especially since the rest of the weekend was a little harried.

So that was my weekend. Back at the grind on Monday morning. I will say on Saturday, it was odd to be on a date. Again, not that Justin and I dated for a very long time, but there was a lot of emotional weight. He has a show next Saturday, I found out from John, so I need to find plans that night to keep myself busy.

But until then... some photos of Friday night:

Me and the Rockport Girls.

Jess, Brittany, and Amanda.

Me getting crowned prom queen and Jaime cheering me on.

And then, the crowning achievement in photography from that night...

My awkward Prom dance with Giacomo.

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Central Mass, where bad haircuts from the 80's go to die...

The last order of business in closing out the Justin chapter of my life was fighting the speeding ticket I got when going to visit him one night. That was today at 9am. First of all, it's pitch black and freezing cold when you leave the house at 6:15am. Fun fact. And it turns out the only people there were me, some other guy, and everyone checking in for probation.

But, onto my hearing. I wrote a song about it:

Fought my speeding ticket (was not fun) but
I fought the Central District Court of Clinton, MA and I won.
I fought the Central District Court of Clinton, MA and I won.
Supposed to pay a fine, now there's none.
I fought the Central District Court of Clinton, MA and I won.
I fought the Central District Court of Clinton, MA and I won.
I said my driving's record was good,
And sure 'nuf they understood.
They told me to slow down from now on, but
I fought the Central District Court of Clinton, MA and I won.
I fought the Central District Court of Clinton, MA and I won.

Joe Strummer would be proud. And yes, bitches, I WON! STRIPPED FROM MY RECORD! DON'T HAVE TO PAY THE FINE! The Magistrate told me not to speed any more in this area, and I agreed, but I thought in my head "I don't plan on coming through these parts any time soon".

Then I peaced out and did jazz hands in the parking lot. True story.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

I love Arcade Fire, and so should you

Neon Bible in an elevator. Amazing.

Monday, October 27, 2008

T Minus 8 Days

And then the election will have come and gone.

Last election I got so annoyed and worked up I got a little drunk and kept drunk-dialing my boyfriend at the time, Andy. I never said I was classy.

That being said, I'm thinking I might enjoy some wine on Election Night and watch the results unfold. I just won't be drunk-dialing Andy, as we don't talk any more and I don't even have his phone number.

Maybe Justin will get my sloppy drunk calls? Or maybe I'll be hiding my phone. Better idea. Here we go.

Monday, October 20, 2008

My dog's cute

Yep, it's true. She is.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

End of a phone era...

So I just upgraded my phone, as old phone was dying. New phone is very pretty. And purple. And doesn't die. And receives texts and voicemails in a timely fashion. So good times all around.

Because the pre-programmed ringtones suck, I decided to purchase one. I was hoping to re-buy my old one, which would be the theme to the Chariots of Fire. Because it's hilarious and I could slow mo run to my phone. Also, how freaking random is it to have Chariots of Fire as your ringtone? Very much so.

Sadly... when I looked for it, they no longer carry it. I guess they realized that it was not a popular one and... yeah, a random ringtone.

I right now have the theme to Curb Your Enthusiasm, but I might make the theme to Arrested Development for my phone. We'll see.

Monday, October 13, 2008

...seriously, Ringo?

I just read this:

Please please me.. with no more mail, Ringo says

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Former Beatles drummer Ringo Starr has told fans to stop sending letters and requests for autographs, saying mail will be thrown away after October 20 because he has too much to do.

Starr, 68, made the announcement in a video message titled "Sorry, No More Signing Stuff" posted on his official web site Wearing sunglasses and flashing a peace sign, he says;

"I want to tell you after the 20th of October please do not send fan mail to any address you have. Nothing will be signed after the 20th of October. If that is the date on the envelope, it's gonna be tossed.

"I'm warning you with peace and love I have too much to do. So no more fan mail. Thank you, thank you. And no objects to be signed. Nothing."

He said; "This is a serious message to everybody watching my update right now. Peace and love. Peace and love."

Starr, who with fellow Beatles Paul McCartney and the late John Lennon and George Harrison, comes from Liverpool, England now has homes in Los Angeles and France.

Starr has released more than 12 albums since The Beatles broke up in 1970, the most recent of which was "Liverpool 8" in January 2008.

(Reporting by Jill Serjeant)

...okay, Ringo? I didn't even know you were still recording and working. Or really doing anything. So what is it you do all day long that makes you too busy to sign stuff? And furthermore, who is sending you stuff?

Don't get me wrong, The Beatles are #1 in my book for all time. But maybe it's because I'm a George girl, or maybe because this doesn't cross my mind, but I don't think I'd ever send something to Ringo for him to sign.

So are people my Grammy's age still doing it? I don't even know. But yeah, get over yourself and freaking sign some stuff. There's a whole freaking episode of The Simpsons based on it!!

Ringo Starr: Dear Marge, thanks for the fab painting of Yours Truly. I hung it on me wall. You're quite an artist. In answer to your question, yes, we do have hamburgers and fries in England. But we call French fries "chips." Love, Ringo. P.S. Forgive the lateness of my reply.

Friday, October 10, 2008

Interesting thoughts...

Here are some random thoughts from the week:

--I have some great friends. A week ago this time I was feeling devastated and questioning myself and just so horribly sad. And many of them (nay, the entire posse list minus Justin obviously since I think he's non-posse now) made sure I was okay and helped me out all week. It's moments like this where I realize how great my friends are.

--I think the plan in all of this is to keep myself as busy and moving as possible. Don't rest and start over-thinking. Keep busy, keep moving.

--The economy falling apart sucks, but it had to happen. And I think it's stuff like this that shows people to save, be smart and frugal. I hope it rebounds soon, though. Tim said that me and the economy will make a big rebound.

--My housewarming may lead me to drink if people ask me "How's Justin?" too many times. Just a warning.

--I have too much yarn but I think if I can make them all hats and mittens for the craft fair, I think I'll be sitting pretty.

--Justin taught me a lot. I know we didn't date long, but our connection felt very strong. It was like we burned very bright, but then burned out. I need that strong connection, and to feel comfortable with someone, and to have some "get me". However, I also need someone a little more stable, and a little more wanting to be settled. I will probably (no, definitely) need to date around a bit to find that person. Don't get me wrong, I don't want to settle down and get married and have babies tomorrow, but I need someone who wants something lasting and in a relationship just like me. So off I head on this journey again, trying to find that.

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

The other biggest political battle this season?

No, not B-Rock and Johnny McC.

I need to take a break from my "what does this all mean?" and "why am I still wandering around single?" and also the "what is the point in life?" posts for a night and ponder a battle I've noticed in a state slightly north of me.

The Jean Shaheen and John Sununu battle in New Hampshire.

I've been watching these political ads on tv for what feels like years now. Sununu loves W. too much. Shaheen hates teachers. Sununu loves big oil. Shaheen wants to keep New Hampshire safe. And so forth.

Their ads, if you've never seen them, are vicious. They both scare me a little. They both HATE each other and don't hide this. And they play all the time, often one right after the other. It's insanity.

I have a feeling next week it'll devolve into "John Sununu steals from nuns and orphans" and "Jean Shaheen eats dogs and wants to kick your grandmother in the shins".

What I don't get is this:
1. Why must we sling mud? Tell me what you stand for. Don't tell me why you hate the other party.
2. Why are all these ads playing day and night in New Hampshire?? I realize I'm somewhat close to the border, but it's most definitely on the Boston stations. And Boston, last time I checked, is in Massachusetts.

Come on, kids, let's try to play a civil game here....

"If I could, I'd shove that microphone up your nose, Johnny."
"Shove it, Jeanne. Nobody likes you."

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Update: Not what I meant in new music, but it's worth a laugh or twelve

Rap Master Maurice: $7 Vigilante Rap Phone Calls

The podcast I listen to at work Too Beautiful to Live has been talking about him for months. He's hilarious, and then when he was the special guest on Friday night it was one of the best hours of radio I've heard in awhile.

Not what I need for new CDs for my car, but definitely for during the day at work.

Strike up the band?

Today on a drive home from work, listening to Radiohead's The Bends, I started to cry. I was in Hamilton and just crying to beat the bush. I've just been very sad and having a hard time with the loss of Justin (yes, I know he was a douchebag at the end) and all that breaking up crap.

It also hit me that the hour I spend in a car a day isn't helping me. I was listening to The Bends. That Thom Yorke isn't necessarily sunshine and kittens. At a red light, I looked for a happier CD only to find.... Ben Folds and The Arcade Fire. Both great bands, but again... kind of heavy and sad. They were also on heavy rotation when driving to Worcester, so I'm not sure I want to give them playing quite yet.

So in short... I need happier music. But I also don't want love songs. So I need happy non-love related songs. Damn... this might be hard.

Sunday, October 5, 2008

When life gives you lemons, go on a whale watch

Mom and Shana invited me off of the main land and out of my head and onto a whale watch boat. (how many prepositions can I include???)

It was great. Freezing cold, but clear skies and great whales for October. Also, a bit choppy, but happy I had my dramamine. Here are some whale highlights:

Just a few more, I promise...

(not whales, obviously)

And this shows just how close they were to the boat.

Last few days...

...have been interesting. Definitely show me who my friends are and how great they are.

After the initial Justin break up conversation, I called Erin a mess and we talked for about an hour. She gave a lot of perspective on the whole thing, which is kind of what I needed since I wasn't thinking clearly.

The next day, I called in sick. I hadn't slept well at all, and I knew I couldn't fake it all day. I needed a day to think and collect my thoughts about this and a million other things.

During the day I tried to answer a few questions: if he wants to come back and try again, should I? Should I just end the battle now, as he's clearly not ready for a relationship? What is it I'm looking for?

At night, Dianne and Danielle invited me over for dinner and cupcakes and wine. All were needed. We watched Forgetting Sarah Marshall which, in retrospect, probably not the best idea on their part for a movie. They gave some good advice, and I finished my thinking over in the car.

That night, I decided that I think we should break up. He's not ready or even selfless enough to be in one. The tipping point for me was me trying to think if he had done any of the little things I did to cheer him up, or if I needed him immediately, would he be there for me? The answer was no and I couldn't say but probably not. I do really care for him and perhaps could have transitioned into loving him, but we just can't be together right now.

Then the next morning came...

...when John, his best friend texted me apologizing that we broke up and that it didn't work out. To which I said "what part of this is thinking about it for a few days??" I was livid. If he wanted to end it right then and there, he should have just done it. Not placate me and stretch it out. And futhermore, he should have also told me this FIRST.

I then spent an hour removing pictures of him from Facebook, changing statuses, and removing the songs he sent me and the pictures I have of him from my computer. I then wrote a note on a small gift (penny candy he grew up liking) I had gotten him on Thursday. I probably will not send it, but it felt good. Then I did probably a low blow, but he deserves it.

I texted him that it was the worst thing ever that he broke up with me via a friend and that I was done and he didn't need to call me back.

Then I cried some more and called Tim Duffy to sort things out.

After that, I decided I needed to get out of my head and go see whales. Which was perfect. They did every activity a whale does and they were right up next to the boat, which is uncommon in October. And good to see Shana and my mom. I'm glad I went.

That night, for another moment of great friends, Brian invited me over to hang out with his friend Gus and drink gin and tonics. Which were tasty, what with Brian being half British, so it's in his DNA. We played a lot of Wii and then when Gus left Brian and I watched Empire Records and talked until after 3am. It was good. Then I drove home.

So yeah, shitty week, but I have good friends to make it better. Justin hasn't tried to contact me, though his friend did to make sure I was okay, and I probably won't hear from him. At least not for awhile. Who knows.

Friday, October 3, 2008

When it rains...

As if my terrible week of job nonsense wasn't enough, I got the dreaded call you don't want when you're in a long-distance relationship last night as well.

Justin is feeling swamped and overwhelmed by everything in his life, and so he needs to re-evaluate and sort some things out. I'm pretty sure this is just putting off the inevitable break up at this point. I know he has a lot going on, and I don't think he's able to change. It was a very emotional hour-long conversation. He's going to call back in a few days to continue it.

I know it appears that I am playing the weak one here and letting him direct this, but I am also using this time to determine what I want. I think what complicates it is that we both agreed last night that we both really like each other and I think there's a level of wanting to be together, just not sure if this is the right time in our lives.

I also need to step back and determine if this is something I want right now: do I want something that's long distance and some traveling involved and a little spur of the moment, or do I want something a little more grounded and traditional? I think what I'll need, no matter what I decide to do next, is make sure that I am getting just as much out of it as I am putting in. And the last month or so, it was definitely not balanced.

So yeah, lots of crying the next few days. Lots of ice cream. Lots of sorting things out for myself...

However, the only highlight of this is that my stupid deadbeat emotionally crippling dad referred to him as Justine in an email. So my dad now thinks I'm a lesbian. Because he's an idiot. Ha!

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Sometimes just a little apple doughnut is all it takes

This week has been just terrible. Every aspect of this week has blown. Work. Personal. All sucking.

Today I had lunch with my friend Kirsten and her best friend/friend from the way-back machine Andrew, which was great. Then I needed to go buy a pumpkin for a party I'm going to tonight so I ran to a local farm down the street for a pumpkin.

I also wanted an apple doughnut. Back in the day when I was little and cute, my mom would bring me and the boys to this farm to get pumpkins, look at animals, and eat apple doughnuts. And they were great. Something from my youth.

So when I went there today, I knew I'd want to get a half dozen for myself to eat over the next week. And not to turn to food to comfort myself, but sometimes it's what you need.

And perhaps this means that my week will be having an upturn: right when I went to get my donuts they had JUST COME OUT OF THE OVEN. So they were warm and fresh and delicious and wonderful. So good.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008


I feel like this entire week has been dealing with stupid people and that my job in general has been kicking my puppy. My overworked, underpaid puppy...

Monday, September 29, 2008

Sam Bam is in the Top 5 of the funniest people I know. There. I said it.

My brother Sam is one of the funniest people I know. Without a doubt. Here are some gems from a Friday conversation regarding having to go to Thanksgiving with our Deadbeat and Emotionally Distant and Crippling dad. WARNING! We swear a lot:

Me: fuck, it was a gorrell thanksgiving last year
Me: because i have a picture of us making fun of joe
Sam: I thought I remembered not being miserable

Me: cue the "you just lose a pricing game on the price is right" music
Sam: bwaaaaaaa
Me: you just sent the mountain man over the edge, buddy
Sam: it was a toaster...a fucking toaster!

Yep, I love that we compare having to eat Thanksgiving to losing the Mountain Climber Game on the Price is Right. Don't you?

Sunday, September 28, 2008

"Busy" weekend

Due to the weather, Justin being in RI, Erin being smitten with Matt, Sarah going home, and me not really wanting to work to see people much beyond that... I spent most of my weekend indoors. I don't feel bad, since it was crappy weather and I was in a sad/crappy mood all weekend. Also, the weather was miserable out.

But fear not, I did actually get stuff done. For example:

--Watched three movies (okay, bad first example)
--Bought food
--Worked on my next sweater (holla!)
--Cleaned my tub
--Made risotto (mmm)
--Made Cinnamon Buns (mmm)
--Washed my towels
--Took risotto to my parents house and had it and pork with them and Ashley (always a great time)

So that's a lot. Could have done more (like wash the floor) but the motivation just wasn't there. There's always this week.

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Pouring a 40 out for Paul Newman today...

My mom -- oh how I love her -- says she'll call for the good and even sooner for the bad. I got a call this morning at 10am telling me that Paul Newman had passed away at 83 of cancer. This is quite sad, as I am a fan of him, his body of work, his organic food, and his piercing blue eyes. I do realize that he had been very sick and was quite old and had a good run, but still. It's kind of sad to hear about the actors you grew up admiring and watching pass away. Kind of like when Jimmy Stewart died many years ago.

Justin and I have a long-running tally of "man crushes": dudes he kind of looks up to or likes, even though he's a straight man. John Cusack tops the list. I also call it man crushes, since they are mostly men and I think they're great. Yes, there are girl crushes as well (Helen Hunt is my #1 alive) but more man crushes. Paul Newman was always at the very top of my list. Even has an older man... damn.

When texting Justin this news he said "that is very sad".

I also admire him for being a rarity and being married to Joanne Woodward since 1958. 50 years! That's incredible in Hollywood and I feel like in real life. They also lived away from all that Hollywood stuff and in Connecticut. Very good.

In honor of Paul, I present some photos of the man. I am all about eye candy, and I have to say... even as an older man, he delivers. I also suggest you go out and rent a Paul Newman movie. Like The Color of Money. Cool Hand Luke. Cat on a Hot Tin Roof. Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid. the Verdict. You get the idea.

Friday, September 26, 2008

Life Immitating my favorite childhood movies?

I just read that the fall of Wamu is related to the classic run on the bank. This makes sense. However, because I'm ridiculous and part of my love of film and lack of knowledge of history (yes I see the irony in me dating a history teacher), the only thing I could think of from this was the "Run on the Bank" scene in It's a Wonderful Life.

This is the "your money's in Joe's house and Bill's house!" scene which concludes with Mama Dollar and Poppa Dollar. Great movie and great scene for a shitty time in our economy and history.

The country is going to hell, so I'm going to rant on something else significantly less important...

It's so bad, with the fall of Wamu and the economy and the war and that moron Sarah Palin that I'm going to ran on something else that really doesn't matter...

The tv show ER.

I haven't seen ER since perhaps my senior year of high school. Last night I was finishing up a sweater, so I was up and happened to catch the last season premiere. Here are my thoughts:

--Why the hell is this show still on the air? I know it's the end, but seriously. No one who was originally on the show minus a nurse or two are still on the show. No one cares. This show doesn't matter any more.

--I never want to live in Chicago, because it seems like it’s a tragedy-a-day there. Buses, ambulances, helicopters, and so forth seem to blow up all the time. I’d fear for my life. I’m in no way important enough to live. I’d get a pole through my abdomen.

--Do we seriously need to kill Gallant? Does that make people want to watch this show more? No? Didn’t think so. Killing the only interesting characters doesn’t make an episode very “special” or make me tune in again.

--I hate it when ER calls characters our “friends”. Has any character from ER ever had me over for dinner? Who from the ER has ever picked me up from the airport? When was the last time they came to a game night at my house? Exactly. They’re not real, so therefore they’re not my friends.

--Back to Gallant. I called that he’d bite it in the first five minutes of the show. Exploding ambulance = dead popular character.

--The only highlight is that Buster Bluth showed up as a patient who had an older lady as a friend. And he was hilarious and talked their ears off. It was awesome. I only wish he had a run in with a loose seal during it. (and no, the older woman was not withholding and getting off on it)

Thursday, September 25, 2008

I'm with the band... and the runners

Maybe it's just missing, but I decided after work today to sort pictures I had taken recently and came across the ones I had taken of Justin's most recent show, which was during a 5k at in Providence. That's him in blue. He's the front man of a band called No Town: The Justin Marra Trio. He's kind of a big deal:

Oh, and it's a 5k. There were runners. Right.

The best part of this was that his mom and grandmother were there. I haven't met them, nor do I think they know we're dating. So it was a very nervous 90 minutes. Couldn't just go up and say hi, and didn't know if they knew who I was. Lots of sweating it out from me. Erin went with me, and got a kick out of this.

Interesting pictures

Coworker/boss Dustin sent me a website a customer had, which had a collection of old pictures of a Mental Health Hospital in New Jersey. Creepy and weird, but also artistically beautiful. This is my favorite, though I'm not sure why:

I love the decay of the paint and the walls around the old sewing machines and hair dryers. So bizarre but cool.

The product of a lunch at work

Today Kirsten and I had lunch together and the subject of our friend Ben's blog came up. Then Kirsten said "you should have a blog". And I thought... "sure, why not?"

So here it is. My attempt at a blog. Probably random stories about my day, videos and articles I've found online, rants about how Sarah Palin spits in the face of everything women have worked towards, and so forth. I guess I should go through a cast of characters? Sure. Cast of characters:

Sarah: The roommate. Friend from home. Should not be confused with me.

Erin: Best friend/hetero lifemate/bizarro twin/college roommate. Often my right hand man and copilot in life. She's snarky and will try to push my buttons. Good people.

Brian: Erin's roommate, and another college friend.

Tim/Duffstuff: Other best friend. Just got married. Lives in Virginia. Freaks out about his health from time to time. Calls me a biddie.

Brad: Former coworker/gay man pal.

Dianne/Danielle: Friends from college who happen to be twins. Go to their house often for crappy food and tv. Great people.

Kirsten: Coworker and inspiration for this blog. Enables me to eat biscotti and coffee from now on.

Justin/J-Mar: Boyfriend. Intellectual equal. Have way too much in common for our own good, probably. Teacher. Lives in Worcester. Worth the drive. Frontman to a band I happily groupie. Fellow lover of the postcard, the Converse sneaker, and long walks in the rain.

Sam/Sam-Bam and Pete/Pistol Pete: Brothers. Great people. Make fun of me for my silly tendencies and falling asleep in cars.

Michnya: Older brother I never had. Snarky, cynical. Michelle's boyfriend. Great people.

Michelle: Great college friend. Michnya's girlfriend. Theatrical inspiration. Good lawyer. Fellow tea lover.

More/better to come.