Monday, January 31, 2011

What I have learned...

This might get lengthy. Apparently, I have been misinformed for quite some time. So recently, this is what I have learned... (In list form. Because I? LOVE the lists.)

1)besides the fact that people are dumb, and when the driver says "Everybody going to Philly? 7:35?" she does not, in fact, mean "If you are going to Baltimore at 8, you should get on this bus." Stupid kids. But also, possibly, stupid driver. She was checking tickets and it says in the ticket number what the departure and arrival cities are.

Lesson Learned: NEVER book a Megabus connection only 5 minutes from when you are due to arrive. You WILL end up having to take crappy regional rail, AT 10pm, ARRIVING at 12:40am in NYC, and not get home until nearly 1:30am because there's un-posted track work happening on the 2/3 express track at Penn Station, which you only need to take 1 stop and the platform is split so you can't jump on the local train should it come first and you will end up running down the stairs, then back up the other stairs and nearly get caught in the door WITH your weekend luggage. Awesome.

2)Rather than beg and plead for the DJ to help and make my life easier and assist me with bills, get him the hell out of my life. His actions have been unforgivable, and I do NOT need him. Do some research, figure out that you can handle things even better on your own, and for cheaper, and just get him out. Stop feeling helpless.

Lesson Learned: Pull yourself out of this needy shell you have become and get your shit together! You have taken care of yourself your entire life and NOW you need somebody that would treat you like that to make your life EASIER?! What are you NUTS?! Just deal with it. You'll be better for it. *Also: maintain this in future relationships, k? Nobody likes a needy bitch.*

3)After talking to an entrepreneurial professor from Penn State Main Campus, you realize that you are thinking in the right direction for your company, but still have some leg work to do. Rather than peruse CraigsList for possible gigs, define your business model. Research how to financially run a business and get your paperwork together. Update your website, and start making connections with local vendors that may be able to pass business your way.

Lesson Learned: You're on the right path! Just need to do a little more leg work so you are confident in your business. Keep going!

4) Although I am skeptical of all things astrological, I do find it somewhat fascinating and will check out my horoscope regularly. My birthday is March 21, which (contrary to the "new" information regarding the signs which I choose to ignore) puts me on the cusp of both Aries and Pisces. Technically I am an Aries, and see a lot more of that sign in myself. I'm head strong, a fighter, typically an A-type personality, etc. But I definitely recognize things about Pisces in myself as well, like I try to hide a lot about myself, and I am an emotional person who can be very idealistic. It's a rough cusp to hang out on. But I dig it. Anyway, I choose to read both horoscopes and combine them to figure out where the heck I am in the world according to the stars. I sound crazy.

My horoscope yesterday left me feeling hopeful, and really spoke to me.

Aries: If your love life is a little lackluster now, you can expect some big changes. Whatever stage or state of love you now find yourself in, things are going to heat up. If you are happily involved, you will soon be happier. IF YOU'RE IN A TRANSITION PERIOD, SOME CATALYST WILL MANIFEST IN YOUR LIFE TO SHAKE THINGS UP AND HELP YOU TO MAKE THE CHOICES YOU NEED TO MAKE. And if you're looking for love, this is the perfect time to go out and find it. Don't be shy. Tell the universe what you want, and you will achieve it.

Pisces: You recently began a new venture, or you will soon. This may be part of an effort to bolster your finances or improve your life in some way. Bravo to you for trying to make things better. In may ways, you have taken great care to make your life fuller and more secure, even if you haven't seen a lot of progress. now, through, it's almost as if a dam has burst. Soon you'll begin to see signs that your efforts are paying off. it may take a while yet for you to get to where you want to be, but you will definitely reach and possibly even exceed your goal.

Lesson Learned: Take horoscopes in stride, but they can be very guiding. Also, good call writing it down on the back of that VISA bill you need to pay. Excellent reminder:)

5) I went Churching last weekend. At my mom's house. After the influx of conversations with exes (Ex whats? Never really defined. I call them either "Exes" or "Ex Situations".), I needed a little Jesus. Funny story? I forgot how much I actually really enjoy church. And my parents have a great class they are involved in. I've had some sour experiences with church. I've mostly found that they are filled with "holier than thou" types who don't understand that the reason there is church, is because we, as people, mess up a LOT. Yes, Even You, Ms. "I go to church EVERY WEEK, and my children are perfect Christian Cherubs and I stick up my nose to you because you are a SINNER and much worse than I could ever be!" Anyway, I was pleasantly surprised and felt my Holy Cup fill up again.

Lesson Learned: Stop being a heathen, find a church (But not the one in your neighborhood, because the processions and the drums around the neighborhood with the statue of some holy figure with money pinned to it seems... not right.) and go. Even if it's just for the 10:45 church service and you're there for an hour, with no close involvement. You need it, it's good for you. Be a grown up. (P.S. People are IMPRESSED when they hear you went to church. Also? You will learn about friends that go to church too so maybe you can go together sometimes? Yay!)


6)So my supervisor was out of the office all of last week for a family emergency in Oklahoma. ... "OOOOOOKLAHOMA where the wind comes sweepin down the plain!" ... Ahem. So I was left to deal with the office. The WHOLE office. After having been here for just over a month. PANIC. But no, not really. But then yes, kind of. I had 23 people to support (answer phones, copy, scan, remind of appointments.), 5 of which were traveling directly in the middle of the gigantic snow storm last week, 1 of which brought 8 (count 'em. 8) extra people into the office, 4 from our Sydney office, 4 from a client office, all of which needed support, tech set ups, rooms booked, re-booked, re-booked, and booked again, visitor passes made, then edited, and edited again, USB sticks, couriers (which caused me to be hit on multiple times by mail room attendants. Ugh. No time for your witless banter.), mailings, and travel. 2 new hires starting in our NASHVILLE OFFICE (remember? I'm in NYC. Not all that close to Nashville, but I guess in comparison to Sydney.... but I digress.) that need blackberries ordered, set up, and mobile numbers reported to Sydney NOW NOW NOW to try to get business cards made right NOW NOW NOW because they are going to CAPE TOWN SOUTH AFRICA NEXT WEEK (a.k.a. this week)and MUST be able to give out these numbers, even though they have no business address, business number, or even a physical office. I will receive no less than 5 emails during the 30 minute Sydney/NYC cross over business half hour between 5:30 and 6pm every day asking if I had heard anything about the phones, or the phone numbers, and did I know if I could get the numbers before the handsets, because really (no really, she was serious on the 22nd email, more so than the others) that was the most important thing and could I chase down someone or pressure them to get it to me NOW NOW NOW because it's really important and I can't do it myself and PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE get this done yesterday!(No. Seriously. yesterday. Today is yesterday already in Sydney. Talk about a time crunch.) I was rescheduling lunches and meetings and updating documents for this office and the Chicago office and planning and canceling and re-booking travel and cars and hotels for 4 other people present in the office last week. UGH! <-- this? Is why I didn't post last week. Not at all.

Lesson Learned: You will get praise and hugs from your boss and supervisor, and thanked profusely for your hard work. Also? You will be paid for nearly 8 hours of over time (that's almost $200 after taxes! HELLO SIZABLE PAYCHECK!) AND you will get to hang out with, talk to, and plan stuff with hot Aussies. Yes, this makes it worth it. And maybe they will make you permanent sooner rather than later? Eh? Eh??

Tomorrow Or... some day after today.. but hopefully tomorrow...: I will contemplate whether to go away next weekend and what the dilemmas are.

Now? Back to scanning...

Friday, January 21, 2011

Thoughts that are Meandering Around in my Mind Today...

Just a few things that have happened/are happening around today's date.

1) I was carded at the movies the other night. CARDED! I haven't been carded at a liquor store, or at my local deli when buying beer, or the Duane Reade when buying beer, or at most bars I visit in a LONG time. But the movies? I'm carded. When I asked why, the LOVELY chick behind the counter said "Because it's rated R." Um. K? "Isn't it that nobody under 17 can get in?" "yeah." ........? She continues after my confused look and she said "Well, if you look like you are under 25 I'm supposed to card you." WOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!! I look under 25?! I mean, I'm almost 27 which I understand isn't a huge difference. BUT, I look UNDER 25, which basically translates to "You look like one of those sexy co-eds that all those 'Girls Gone Wild' videos rave about (minus the showing of boobage or being in the shower with another chick. You know what I mean.)! That's a big time score! Especially what with being back in the dating pool. So the gym routine must be working, just another reason for me to jump back on that band wagon full speed ahead next week. Done and done!

2) So I am getting my hair did on Sunday. Yup. First time in 8+ months. It's always a little scary for me. I don't do a lot with my hair. I've been rocking all different types of layered cuts for years. It works for me. I do use a lot of product (volumizer, anti frizz, spray conditioner, hairspray... etc...) but I still generally don't obsess over my hair. Mostly because I've been blessed with really fabulous hair. And I'm not just bragging. I'm really impressed with my hair! But I always get anxious when I try somebody new. A girl that I used to work with at the evil evil restaurant has her license (cosmotology? hair do-er extrodinaire? not sure what it's called really.) and will be doing my hair on Sunday. I have very very deep dark brown hair. Which is cool, but sometimes it gets a little drab and flat looking. So I've opted to put a little caramel and copper high lights in it. Imma scurred. Nobody has high lighted my hair since my very very favorite hair lady, Chelsea, in West Chester, PA. I trusted that girl with EVERYTHING! My hair was down to the low of my back (about where it is now. Ridiculous.) and I walked in with a picture of Katie Holme's new short bob haircut a few years ago and said "Chop it off. All of it. I want it gone." And although she was scared and sad to cut off my hair, home girl rocked it out! I looked hot! I might have to start traveling back to see her from now on if Sunday doesn't work out so well. To be honest, I think it's gonna be fine. I just have to make sure she knows EXACTLY what I'm thinking before she goes all nutso on my hair. It'll be cool. *BREATHE*

3)I have deemed myself the Queen of Snark. Why? Well because I am. And the tension between the DJ and I is consistantly growing. For example, this is the conversation we had last night.

Me: Do I have an ipod cable anywhere?

DJ: No, I don't think so.

Me: Ok. Can I borrow one?

DJ: (laughing, fakely, but very hard) You want to borrow one from me? Are you serious?

Me: Why is that funny?

DJ: Have you not been here the last 2 days?

Me: Yes, I have been. Why is it funny?

DJ: You haven't said two words to me, I've been called every name in the book..

Me: Oh! I'm so sorry! Did I hurt your feelings?! I didn't mean to do THAT!

DJ: And apparently I'm an asshole. (My awesome mom called him this on his facebook page. BAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA)

(Pause. Look at the DJ.)

Me: And this is in some way shocking to you? You call yourSELF an asshole. You were in some way unaware? It's surprising to you that someone else might share this same sentiment?

DJ: Whatever, Connie. The cable's in the front of my bag.

TWO POINTS FOR CONNIE! Also? I just scored bonus points. The DJ, for the first time in 2 years, APPOLOGIZED UNPROVOKED! So I'm mean, and I somehow got HIM to appologize to ME?? Kind of classic.

Now. I don't want you to get the wrong idea. I'm not REALLY a mean person. This is a special circumstance. Generally speaking, my perfectly timed snark makes people laugh, realize truths about themselves but in a way that says "You know I still love you in spite of this, but... seriously. Take a look around." But right now, it just feels so damn good to be not nice! I'm sure this will pass, right? I feel a little like Meg Ryan in You've Got Mail when she's all snarky to Tom Hanks and says that he just brings it out in her. I get that.

4)Since I am still a temp, I have to go to pick up my paycheck. The place I have to go is technically on the way home, except that they close at 6, and I get out of work at 6. So I wouldn't make it in time. So in the middle of my day, every Friday, I have to walk down the 8 blocks to the office, or I have to go get on the train that never comes, and pick up my paycheck. It's always a disappointment, and lower than I assumed it would be. But I have to do that today. So I can give people money so they stop calling me. Because I don't like that. And they start at 8:00am and go until 10:00pm calling and calling and calling and calling I'M BROKE, BITCHES! I'm not paying you! I have nothing to give you! Wait another week and I will get you your money! And it will be on time from here on out because I got myself a big girl job! And I figured out how to budget (kinda) and now everything will be fine!

That was not the point. The point is, that now I have a scheduling delema on my hands. I'm hungry already, and I usually wait until 2 to eat lunch, since I eat breakfast at 9, then a snack at 11:30 or 12. But I'm hungry. And I'm getting Chipotle today. So I guess I could go, brave the lunch rush to get my paycheck, deposit money, get chipotle and come back to eat which will all take about an hour. Or I could go get lunch now, then leave again to get my paycheck. Which I think is a little irresponsible since I am a temp, and taking 2 breaks today, along with ending at 5 for Beer Friday... that seems lazy. Yet here I sit, at my desk, typing in my blog. Hmm. Tricky.

Ok, option 1. I'm going. Wish me luck! I'll talk to you after the weekend a la Allentown!

Thursday, January 20, 2011

I have not disappeared...

So... I've been avoiding you, dear Blog.  I know.  I know.  I shouldn't have done that.  But to be honest, things have been so craptastic the last few days I haven't been able to put them into words. 

Let's suffice it to say that the DJ has surpassed even his own low standards and shocked himself at the unforgivable acts that took place earlier in the week.  Living together is NOT WORKING.  And what's worse?  There's no way out.  He is on the couch indefinitely.  There is no talking.  The kids (a.k.a. pets, Dog Maggie and Cat Puka)?  They have taken my side.  They both sleep in bed with me, with Maggie taking the DJ's spot.  What's strange is the last 2 weeks have been blissfully fantastic.  To the point where I thought we might have a chance.  I was so very very wrong. 

We did have the DJ's brother and brother's friend visiting for the weekend.  And we even successfully threw a Martin Luther King, Jr. Birthday bash on Sunday night.  That was the last good day.  At least we went out in a drunken bang. 

However.  I finally have some positive news to report.  First, I had a fantastically emotional girls night last night with two of my very favorite people, Miranda and Jlo.  Jlo is not, in fact, Jennifer Lopez.  It's my friend Josh.  But the name fits him, believe me.  We had a drink and then headed over to see the movie Blue Valentine.  PEOPLE!  Here is your PSA:  Do NOT see this moving without tissues.  You WILL cry.  A lot.  But it was fantastic and Ryan Gossling is adorable as per usual (except that he seems to be a 1 note actor, but still... that one note is a pretty fantastic one!) and Michelle Williams... well I have a hard time because I kind of hated her character, but then sort of got her at the same time.  Also, a very special kind of eye candy in the bedroom scene at "Cindy's" parents' home.  Either way, very successful girls night and definitely something we all needed.  We also vowed to do something more upbeat next time.  Like maybe No Strings Attached?  A little Ashton Kutcher action??  Who can go wrong with that?  (What is this?  Doth mine eyes decieve me?  Am I showing affections for 2 white men in the same posting?!  Craziness.)

I have stumbled across, what I am certain, millions of other people already know about.  Is. Amazing.  So you go on, you take this style quiz that lets them know what you like and what you're interested in.  Then they have this cyber personal shopper go and find shoes and handbags (2 of my very favorite things in the whole wide world) that match that style.  Plus, all the while, you can go in and rate different shoes and handbags so they can further hone in on your style!  SO COOL!  Best part?  The shoes are all only $39.95 and FREE SHIPPING!  HA!  Can you tell I'm uber excited about this??  Best part??  They don't even pay me to support them!  But they probably should.  Just sayin. 

The Dolce&Gabbana summer collection just makes me happy, sing-songy and warm/fuzzy inside.  It makes me want to go to Greece, and the beach, and 5th Avenue all at the same time.  Just go look at it.  Tell me it doesn't get you all happy inside like a new romance. 

I am getting the Hell Outa Dodge this weekend.  That's right.  I'll be traveling to PA to spend the weekend with my best friend's mom (who I also call Mom because I've known her since I was 13, and here I am at 26 still needing her comfort after a terrible break up) and my best friend, Maria.  Why?  Because then I DON'T have to spend it around the DJ, and I get to see them, and I get to eat good food and I get to hang out in the hot tub (HOT TUB!!) and I'm just thrilled.  I really need this.  And I love them and haven't spent nearly enough time with them recently.  So I'm going.  Oh.  Must Prepare Christmas Gifts.  Right.  officially on the to-do list.  Maybe the gym won't happen tonight.  Damn. (No seriously.  I needed to go.  Next week it's happening every day.  No excuses!)

Oooh.  But this might mean a trip to the craft store!  SQUEEEEEEE!!! 

Ok.  Ok.  So I'm back, I promise.  I will stop avoiding you.  And hopefully will have lots of pictures to share upon my return from the weekend.  Just.Gotta.Firgure.Out.How.To.Post.Them.  Hmmm... I'll work on that!

Friday, January 14, 2011

This city freakin cracks me up...

OK, so 2 things have happened in the last 24 hours that have cracked me up.  1 in I guess a good way, the other in maybe not such a great way.

OK, first.  So when I was little, my mom dispensed safety advice.  You know, the usual "Look both ways before crossing the street!"  and "Wash your hands!" and "Don't swallow your gum!".  Last night I was waiting for the train to go home after the gym, and a woman and her son who was maybe 5 or 6 are waiting next to me.  Her son points to the "very official" looking paper sign that the MTA has posted, stating a service change with the trains.  He says "mom, the train isn't coming to this station!" to which the mother replies "You have to read the whole sign. If you don't, you won't be totally informed.  WHEN is the train not coming to this station?"  "ooooh" he says.  "Only Tuesday."  "What time on Tuesday?" she asks.  "12am until 5am."  "Right" she says.  Then her son gets closer to the pole that the sign is posted to so that he can get a closer look.  Obviously, this mom is a good mom.  She corrects, but in a supportive way.  She guides, but doesn't diminish the kid's self esteem.  Good mom.  As her son gets closer to the pole, she yells " DON'T TOUCH THAT POLE!  PEOPLE PEE ON THERE!"  Her son just looks at her totally disgusted.  That is definitely a piece of safety advice my mother never dispensed to me... although it's a good one!

The other thing that happened that cracks me up/ drives me crazy is:

Today on the news they were reporting that a local preacher is fighting to keep a school in the Bronx from being closed.  Apparently the students in this school are not performing satisfactorily, and thus the city has decided to discontinue funding the school.  These kids will have to go to another school where their parents may be forced to pay for their education, as they are so far behind.

Before starting at my super fabulous job, I worked part time for the Board of Education in their Impartial Hearings office.  Believe me, I've heard everything.  From parents coming into the hearings with Fendi sunglasses and Prada bags, asking that the state of New York pay $80,000 a year to send their child to boarding school because they can't possibly afford it, to the 19 year old kid that had been passed from grade to grade, but is unable to graduate now because at 19, he can barely read on a 1st grade reading level.  This city's school system is WHACK!  And just recently, the ever insightful Mayor Bloomberg decided to place a new Chancellor in office.  This Chancellor has ZERO education experience.  Literally.  She has never been a teacher, school administrator or superintendent.  And now, she's running the whole show!  The whole shebang!  And has no freaking clue what she's doing.

Education really is the most important thing.  Especially grade school.  I can see getting through life without a college degree.  Do enough internships, or start at the bottom of a company and work your way up, educating yourself the whole way.  Or going to a trade school.  But really, grade school is just invaluable in kids' lives.  The fact that the kids aren't performing as a whole school is clearly not their fault.  There is a problem with the system.  I get why more money goes to the more affluent neighborhoods.  People want to live there because of the good schools and are willing to put more money into the community to keep those schools at the high end of the scale.  I'm not saying that's wrong.  That's life!  If you're willing to put more money into the system, and you have the means to do so, you should reap the benefits.  I get it, and live by that way of thinking.  And I understand the class system.  I really do.

But I just can't help feeling like we owe ALL kids more than that.  That for just a small amount of time, we should shelter their innocence from that knowledge that, in societies' eyes, you aren't worth as much as the affluent kids because your parents don't make as much money.  I'm not saying make all schools equal across the board.  But maybe, just allocate funds so that there are enough books for every school in the city.  Make sure that there is a library with at least 10 computers with Internet access available in all schools.  At least give the impression that the kids in the Bronx school have a fighting chance.  And take it from me, a kid that went to one of those affluent schools.  The sky-lit, glass paned reading nook in the library is really unnecessary, and mostly we just use it to sit and socialize during study hall, rather than studying.  And the courtyard with the pretty landscaping?  Yeah... we didn't notice that until you told us to report there for senior pictures.  Try giving some of that money to the kids in the neighboring city that had to share 1 ratty outdated text book between 3 kids.  Really, we don't mind.  And our education isn't in any way effected. (Effected?  Affected?  I'm really bad at that... I should improve that while I write this blog. <-- Ha ha, there's my affluent education for ya!)

When I was talking to the DJ about this this morning, I said that they needed to change out the teachers, because THEY were unable to do their jobs.  His response was, "It's in the hood, no teachers want to go there.  That's why the crappy ones are there and are unable to teach the kids."  I know this has been proposed before, and probably hasn't worked.  But inner city teachers need to be paid MORE!  Not just in general more, because all teachers really deserve more.  I mean, a LOT more for the more "dangerous" locations.  Why are teachers in suburban schools getting paid so much more than inner city teachers?  Do they deal with metal detectors?  Conflicting gangs with roots running generations long?  Rampant teen pregnancy?  Mostly uninvolved parents (either by choice or otherwise)?  Buildings and equipment that are falling apart?  Lack of resources?  These teachers have a lot more to think about than lesson plans and grading.  Just getting themselves and the kids to school on a regular basis is a feat.  They deserve more, so that actually working in these schools is more worth their while.  They need motivation to make a difference, too.

I don't know.  Obviously this is a debate that has been going on for years, and I'm clearly not going to change any minds.  It just makes me sad that yet again, these kids will have something come crashing down around them and be in a state of unsettled panic if this school closes.

Anyway, I'd be interested in hearing anyone's takes on this. Either the pee pole or the school situation :)

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Randomness on a Tuesday... Hey! Just like the Didactic Pirate!

A few random thoughts to brighten your day.

1) About 36 hours ago I made the most delish Antipasta dish ever to grace the earth's surface.  It is a delectable concoction of green olives, button mushrooms, marinated artichoke hearts, cheese (it calls for swiss but I don't like swiss.  So I used provolone.  Something mild along those lines works) and hard salami.  I cut everything up, but leave it mostly chunky and add some vinegar, ground mustard, salt, pepper, oregano and basil.  Use crackers to shovel the heaven-in-a-bowl into your mouth.  I use club crackers, the DJ feels that it requires something a little fancier like water crackers or matzo.  Whatever.  The cracker is hardly the most important part.  Anyway, it makes a pretty good amount, so it's good for parties.  I usually make it because I'm craving it, and I can eat it for lunch and dinner repeatedly and not feel too bad because it's mostly a healthy dish, beyond the sodium (which is palpable, but yummy yummy good).  I just finished the last bit of it for lunch.  It filled the largest pyrex container I own 36 hours ago.  The last time I made this I think I lived by myself, and thus it lasted a week for me.  The DJ... he's a piggy.

2) I have come down with a cold.  Nothing major, just a runny nose, a little coughing/sore throat.  Not enough to keep me home from work.  But since at the moment I am temping and have no health insurance to speak of, I don't want this little cold to escalate.  A lot of times when I get sick in the middle of winter, my little colds turn bronchial and then I need antibiotics.  So unless I can hold off on antibiotics until the beginning of March, I need to be sure this goes no further.  So I tried going to the gym last night and sweating it out.  The DJ made tacos for dinner because I said I needed something spicy (they turned out more salty than spicy, and I'm starting to get concerned about my intake of salt over the last 2 days.) to try to burn the germs out of me.  My world for the last 24 hours has been filled with tissues and hand sanitizer and chlorox wipes for my desk.  I'm feeling a little better, but that leads me to number 3...

3) We are officially into the second week of living with the most recent ex.  When I tell you I have a cold, and a head cold at that, I'm not kidding.  I don't get sick easily.  So I fell asleep on the couch last night.  He could have totally left me right where I was, and it would have been no problem.  I guess at some point, the DJ turned off the lights in the living room but kept the tv volume on level SCREAMY.  At 2am he found something so funny on whatever adult cartoon was on at the moment that he BURSTS out laughing, waking me up.  No biggy, I can still roll over and go back to sleep.  But instead he starts poking at the bottom of my foot and kicking my foot to tell me it was 2am and I should really go to bed.  Am I not already asleep?  Anyway... I get up, and head into the bedroom.  He follows.  Now I'm awake.  Because not only was I rudely awakened, I got up and moved around even just for 10 seconds.  Of course, the DJ lays down and is knocked out in about 3 seconds, snoring away.  I ask him to roll over, he doesn't.  snoring continues.

I ask him to roll over again.  He doesn't.  Snoring continues.

This continues for 30 minutes.

And when I say snoring, I don't mean light quiet inhaling of air.  I mean, rattle the pictures on the walls, shake the foundation of the house snoring.  Generally I can get through it.  I either fall asleep before him, drown myself in wine before bed, or put one ear to the pillow and my arm over my other ear and fall asleep.  This wasn't happening last night.  So I get up, go get a drink of water.  Hit the bathroom.  Calm myself down.  I return to bed, and try to sleep.  15 more minutes of snoring, and I can't take it.  I nudge him again and say "you are snoring really loud.  Please reposition yourself."  You know what his response is? 

"You were snoring on the couch, hun."

OK, There are so many things wrong with this statement.  First, I was probably snoring because I have a head cold (as previously stated) and wasn't positioned correctly.  What's your excuse?  Second, there's no way my snoring could rival what I'm dealing with right now.  Third, why, I beg you, is it my responsibility to be aware of something bothering you when 1) I was unconscious. 2) You didn't say anything to me at all at the time. and 3) It in no way kept you from sleeping OR laughing uproarously at the TV until 2am?  And fourth, my snoring earlier is somehow an excuse for your being unwilling to reposition yourself to maybe help stop the LOUD LOUD NOISES COMING FROM YOUR HEAD?!

To which I responded "then why didn't you wake me up and ask me to reposition myself?"  The DJ then decided he would go sleep in the other room (FINALLY A LITTLE PEACE ALREADY!), cursing about being kicked out of his own bed, blah blah blah.

I immediately went to sleep, and woke up feeling a little better.  I still sound a little nasally, but better.  Of course, immediately upon arriving to work my sneezing fits commenced again.  So I'm back to drinking tea with honey and lemon.  Here's hoping I don't have to visit a free clinic in NYC, because honestly?  That's something I could do without seeing.

4) I almost killed myself on the eliptical.  Twice.  And almost puked on it once.  Not sure what happened.  I was on it for an hour, and felt pretty good. 4.5 miles and 500 calories burned?  I'm good with that!  But then I step off the machine, and it felt like the room was actually moving around me.  I couldn't walk straight, my feet were dragging.  And my hands were shaking for over an hour after I left the gym.  No bueno.

So I took a day off, and returned to the gym last Thursday.  I did 30 minutes on the machine, checked how I felt, decided I was good and maybe it was just a fluke, and kept going.  Again, I got off the machine and felt like I was going to die.  So I took Friday off and the weekend off from the gym.  I was pretty disappointed because I have committed myself to getting into the gym every day after work.  I figure that even if one day a week something comes up after work, I'm still making it 4 days a week, and that's great.

So I decided, enough of being a weakling.  I commited myself to going to the gym, so I'm going.  Suck it up, you're probably just out of shape.  You'll be fine.  So I go, and I do an hour.  At about 40 minutes in, I almost puke.  Like.... I fought to keep it down.  But I finished!  A little dizzy afterward, but not as bad.  So we'll see how it goes, or if I'm going to continue to almost commit suicide by eliptical. 

5) There is a guy that stands outside of my gym and hands out fliers.  I'm not really sure what his purpose is, as my gym has been having the same ridiculous special going on for over a year ($20/month for life.  Pretty freakin amazing for NYC, and really speaks for itself without Flier Guy).  Anyway, he likes to welcome people who are already members of the gym TO the gym, telling them to enjoy their workout and asking what they'll be working on today.  Seems pretty harmless, no?  Except that he wants to have this same conversation every time he sees me.  Also?  He seems pretty happy with himself that he remembers my name is Colleen.  Except it's Connie.  Not Colleen.  He asked me once what I do.  I told him I work at an investment bank.  Hi, that's like saying you work in politics in DC.  Who here DOESN'T work in financial crap in  NYC?  Well this spurred him into picking my brain about his own personal stock portfolio, the state of the economy and what it will most likely do in the next year.  Um, dude?  I'm an assistant.  I make copies, and write emails, and update my personal blog all day at work.  I can't help you there, and I know so little about investments, that you saying you hold stock in gold probably isn't having the great impression on me that you meant for it to. 

I JUST WANT TO GO TO THE GYM IN PEACE!  I am getting off of 9 hours at the office, a 20 minute commute to the gym, and now I have to potentially commit suicide on an eliptical machine for the next hour.  Please just leave me to it.  And no, don't stop me on the way out.  To combat the post-workout conversation, I have taken up exiting the gym holding my phone to my ear, listening to old voicemails, so that I can avoid him.  He's probably a nice guy, but his approach is all wrong. 

6) My neighbor at the office who is German just told me that he no longer can speak German.  He's German, like... off the boat German.  Like, I think he moved to the states within the last 6 months.  I'm sad for him, and said he should join a German social group.  Does that sound like I'm prompting him to start up the Nazi Regime again?  I sure hope not.  That's not what I meant at all.  And he's far too nice of a guy to be a Nazi, he'd never survive and be kicked out of the social group, and be right back where he started.

I think that's all I have for today.  Enjoy, leave tidbits in my comments... whateva :)

Friday, January 7, 2011

There's good and bad in everyday... apparently...

Ok, I'm starting with the bad, then moving to the good.

I woke up this morning to find that, as promised, Mother Nature/ Karma brought us snow.  All wet and yucky.  I actually growled, for lack of a better word, at it loud enough to make the DJ come into the room saying "Did you say something?  Is there a problem?"  to which I pouted "I don't WANNA go to work in the snow!"  Apparently this prompted him into a giant bear hug.  Again.  Yes, we are still not a couple anymore.  The affection continues to grow.  I have no explanation.

I get dressed, and discover I'm having a "fat" day, that I in no way care about or try to correct.  I just look a hot mess.  No jewelery, hair unstyled.  Lookin a little frumpy.  Eh.  Snow.  Boo.

I trudge off to work, running 10 minutes late.  I arrive to the office only to discover that my access card, necessary for practially EVERY MOVE I MAKE, is not working.  At all.  So, getting breakfast, peeing, heating up lunch, etc.?  Not possible without bothering somebody else.  A-Nnoying.

So it's snowing.  I am lucky enough to be in an office surrounded by big wondows, so I literally feel like I am inside a snow globe.  Which is super cool, except that today I have to walk 7 blocks to get my paycheck.  So I watch the snow change from really fast moving itty bitty snow flakes to fat lazy puffy snow flakes... but it doesn't stop.  The sky turns a grayish-green color which makes me pretty sure that the world is ending.  But then it gets lighter, and still the snow falls.  I wait.  And wait. To no avail.

So I decide to leave.  I bundle up, go outside, walk the 7 blocks in the snow/rainy mixture.  I pick up my paycheck and trudge back.  And do you know what Mother Nature/ Karma decide to do once I am securely back in my office?  They go and turn off the snow flakes!  They just STOP probably within 3 minutes of my return.

Also?  NYC Taxes suck.  I miss 3 hours of work last week due to driving back in the blizzard/snopacolypse and it costs me $75 out of my regular paycheck.  But after taxes and everything, I am only paid $16 for the hours I did work.  Um... que?  Taxes. Suck.

On to happier news.  My boss is in a very good mood today.  I am fairly certain that I saw him do the air drums on 2 occasions and he just jumped up from his seat so quickly he nearly knocked the entire row of desks over.  My boss generally walks at the pace of the old pervy neighbor in Family Guy (I'm not sure why.  My boss is young and appears to be healthy. But here we are...), so these quick movements are HILARIOUS at the very least.

Also, my new job is not the most demanding job I've ever had.  To be honest, I'm rather embarrassed that I make what I do hourly here.  But to fill the HOURS of open time, I read blogs.  I have already completely read all past postings by the Didactic Pirate, and am currently reading past posts by my favorite blogger and writer, Jen Lancaster over at  Although many of her posts are thought inspiring, a post that she wrote YEARS ago got me thinking.

I'm a foody.  I always have been.  I know good food, and really enjoy sharing food with friends and family because I think it's a bonding experience.  Jen's post was about a walk she took, bringing her face to face with 3 food kryptonites.  She then asked readers to list their top 5 food kryptonites.  I? Cannot do this.  5 is a joke.  But I can break them down into groups and list 5 for those groups.  So here we go, because I'm already having a fat day, so why not talk about food?
(These are in no particular order)

1. Muddy Sneakers Ice Cream (Made by Hershey's, it's a white chocolate ice cream with fudge, caramel and peanutbutter swirls with chocolate chips.)
2.Cheesecake.  Of any variety.  Must be sweet, rich and creamy.  NY style is best.
3.Peanut butter and Chocolate anything.  Cake, fudge, Reese's, ice cream, whatever.  I'll take it.
4.Starbucks Caramel Macchiatto
5. Crumbs Bakery cupcakes.  Any and all varieties, bonus points for being filled with something.

1. Filet Mignon, so tender that it melts on your tongue. (I worked at Carrabbas for over 2 years, and our Filet was amazing.  I'd get th Filet Speidino which was a Filet with 2 breaded and grilled scallops and shrimp, drizzled in a lemon butter sauce.  Uh.Muh.Gaw)
2. Smoked Gouda Mashed Potatoes
3. All things Carrabbas (after looking at their menu for one specific item, it occurred that I would travel the earth for almost the entire menu.)
4. All things crab, lobster, scallop, etc.
5. Really well made Spinach and artichoke dip (my mom has an amazing recipe!)

1. Bacon and water chestnuts
2. Grilled Chicken Sandwich 2 from E&I Deli in Long Island City.  Grilled chicken, BACON, mozzarella cheese and russian dressing on a hero roll.
3. Bacon Egg and Cheese on a grands buiscut
4. Bacon wrapped Scallops
5. Bacon.

1. Costco delux pizza.  If you have not had, run, don't walk, to your nearest costco.  You might die from the calories, but you will die happy.
2. Mr. Sorrento's on Hershey's pizza, any type.
3. Jo Jo's pizza of Hershey, any type
4. Uno's Chicago Deep Dish pizza
5. Riggtown Oven of West Chester, PA's Pizza, only when drunk, after midnight, any flavor ($1 a slice!  Listen to the song "I love College", he references it.)

Home Cooked Favorites
1. Crab Soup (Made by my mom's husband Buzz and is amazing... with or without broccoli)
2. Yorkshire Pudding (Grandma Bogenschutz's specialty.  She even had the speical pans!)
3. Nanny's Cookies (We lost Nanny this year, so these hold an even more speical place in my heart)
4. Antipasta Salad (Have made and eaten this for many consecutive lunches and dinners. DELISH)
5. Baked Spaghetti

And look at that, when you end things on a positive note, more good things happen!  I forgot all about free beer on Fridays in this office!  WOOOOO!!

Thursday, January 6, 2011

I'm So Excited!

As mentioned previously, I live in NYC.  A tidbit?  Not a huge fan of winter.  I used to be!  O God, the fun I had during the blizzard of '93 and '96! 

I lived in Pennsylvania at the time.  The plows would come up the roads, actually pick up the snow and dump it in HUGE piles on our front lawns.  To the 9 and/or 12 year old kids' mind, you may not realize, but these make GREAT places to build forts, complete with  hidden tunnels.  What you MAY realize is that we, at age 9 or 12, are not exactly engineers.  So we would start digging.  We each had a room, and big dug-out tunnels that we could move around.  A look-out area with no roof over it.  Amazing! 

We decorated by filling spray bottles with water and food coloring and spraying the walls.  And we'd crawl around all day, breathing our hot breath into the enclosed, snowy fortress.  And then at night when it got dark (or, 4pm... which every came first.) we'd go inside, and thaw out. 

The next day we were always so disappointed at how our 3 feet tall tunnels had, overnight, shrunken down to a foot and a half that we had to snake our way through.  We just couldn't figure it out!  How did it get so small??

I no longer carry the same affinity for winter and snow and outdoor activities.  In fact, snow melting is my favorite thing, and i really can't imagine spending ALL DAY out in the cold, especially not sliding around in icy tunnels.  I've been spoiled by the fact that I live across the street from my subway entrance and my office is only about half of a block away from the subway too.  The slightest chill sends me running for sweaters and extra layers. 

Last week I had a bout with Karma, and Karma kicked my ass.  Everywhere I turned..... OK... mostly just Facebook... I was reading that my friends and family all across the Northeastern side of the country were experiencing big beautiful puffy snowflakes outside their windows, just in time for that mythical white Christmas we're all always chasing.  Yet, here I sat, in New York City, and no snow.

Not even a flurry.

My whole life, all I ever heard about was how terrible New York winters were.  Hmmmm... I became skeptical.  Then bitter that we wouldn't have a white Christmas in New York, but everywhere else would!

Well.  Karma surely showed me who's boss.  Sunday, December 26th, I am in Hershey Pennsylvania, visiting my family before making the trip back to New York that night.  It was snowing, but just a little.  All the roads were cleared and salted and the snow had stopped by 9pm that night, and the DJ and I headed out.  Assuming that by the time we made it anywhere near New York City, they would have had time to send plows and salt trucks and we'd be just fine for whatever laid ahead of us.

This?  Is where we were wrong.

About 2 hours into our trip we were doing fine.  Snow was beginning to stick to the road ways and the DJ was about to loose his marbles over the stress of it all (wuss).  But then it really got ugly. (OK, he's not a wuss anymore.)  The road slimmed down to one lane that had been plowed.  The snow is really coming down, the wind is whipping it around creating massive snow drifts.  We're chugging along at maybe 10 or 15 miles per hour.  Slowly slowly, inch by inch we make our way until we see signs for the Holland Tunnel.  We're so close!  We're only 30 minutes out! We're doing so well!'  We can do it!  Wait.... why are we stopped?  WE CAN'T STOP NOW!

Oh, but we did.  For the next 5 hours we stopped.  In the same spot.  Staring at signs for the Holland Tunnel.  Watching the idiots driving the Civic and the Golf in front of us get stuck, dig themselves out, drive 100 yards, come back, dig out their new found buddies, go back to their car, find out their stuck again, dig themselves out... you get the picture.  Well, 40 ounces of coffee will catch up to you after 8 hours of being in the car.  The DJ, what with his convenient anatomy and all, just walked to the front of the car, faced me, and did his business.  I had to precariously dangle myself off the side of the car, know up to my knees and flash my goodies to anybody who may have walked by or used the ramp to our right to drive into the snowy abyss (neither of which happened, thank God!).

Finally the douche-monkeys in front of us got themselves stuck far enough to the side of the road that we were able to drive past them (because we were in a 4 wheel drive vehicle.  You?  Barely have 2 wheel drive on that vehicle.).  Another 2 hours and we were back in the city. 

OK, Karma.  You win.  I asked for it, you delivered.  Point taken. But the trash that is now left on our streets due to workers being shuffled around to handle the snow, and the snow scheduled for this weekend?  Not in any way necessary.

So why?  Why am I so excited?  You really wanna know?

Because until 4:30 today I could see sunlight.  And that, my friends, means we are climbing out of this terrible New York winter.  :)

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Mommy Dearest

I've been thinking a lot about my mom recently.  She's pretty fantastic, and is always there for me no matter what I need or what's going on.  We have this weird connection, and even though we are 163 miles away from each other at any given time, we know what each other is feeling.  Kind of creepy, actually...

But anyway, I wanted to celebrate all the little things about my mom that I just adore, and which most of my friends love and find charming.  In no particular order:

1)She has this love of board games.  And card games.  And really anything that gets a bunch of people together to have a good time.  This brings so much joy to hear heart and life that without fail, every time, something will strike her as funny and throw her into a fit of laughter that brings on tears and inability to sit still in a chair or breathe.  FOR. HOURS.  You can't help but get caught up in the ridiculousness of it all!

2) The woman is so skinny, yet can eat sweets and cookies, and cakes, and all things au gratin, and fried, and McDonald's and Burger King, and it drives me crazy!  She is known for her chocolate chip cookies, little treats that can bring happiness to any cold dark soul.  At no time during my child hood was the cookie jar empty.  And for this... I owe her my curves that never go away.

3) She loves snacks.  Everywhere you go, no matter what you are doing, there is always time for snacks.  Oh, it's Christmas and we just ate a huge breakfast and are now on our way to Grandma's house for appetizers and Christmas dinner?? We should probably grab a can of soda, a bottle of water and at least some pretzels and Christmas cookies.  "Snacks anyone?" 5 minutes into the 25 minute drive.  Really?  Or we have just had lunch, it's been maybe an hour or so.  "Snacks?"  Not enough to ruin our dinner, but I mean really.  We should probably eat again.  Here, let me heat up some cheese stuffed pretzels, or jalapeno poppers.  Veggies and dip?  Cheese and crackers?  Let's not choose.  I'll just make them all and you can just sit here and munch on them.  Her new favorite is cheesy bread made with ranch dressing.  Awesome.  My curves continue to thank you.

4) She is super sentimental.  This is where I get my sensitivity from.  She is so concerned for everyone.  And I really don't mean just the people in her life, or people that she knows well, or just her family.  I literally mean EVERYONE.  Every time I introduce myself as "Vicki's daughter" it's all "oooooh, she's such a nice lady!  We just love her cookies!"  I know.  Trust me.  I know.

5) She cries at movies.  Even movies you're not supposed to cry at, she finds something sentimental about it and cries.  Like the Sixth Sense.  Not really a weepy movie.  She was crying all over the place at the end when Brucy finds out he's dead, and creepy kid's mom finds out he's seeing dead people.  Sorry if I just ruined the ending for you.

6) She's kind of neurotic.  She's a control freak, much like your truly.  We need to do everything we can to make things go the way they should.  Or at least the way WE think they should.  But that generally means overstepping boundaries.  My sister is 21 years old and my mom still feels like she needs to remind her to shower, to set her alarm, and go to work.  Granted, my sister is not the most self-sufficient person on the planet, but  still.  I will get phone calls every 3 days, and the message left generally sounds something like this:

           "Connie.  It's your mother.  I haven't heard from you in 3 days.  If I don't hear back from you this evening, I'm calling the cops up there and having them come check on you."

Ah yes, just what the 108th Precinct wants to do.  They hate me enough already.  (Story will be told in a future posting.  Today is Mommy's day.)

7) She's a really terrible driver.  In a recent visit, she scared the Bejeezes out of the DJ.  Upon getting into the car her first comment was "I'm not very good at this..." Oh. Damn.  We're flying over hills, nearly bottoming out at the bottom, and thank god she knows how to turn into a skid...  It's like Nascar on crack!  We arrive at our destination and she pulls into a parking spot.  The DJ and I jump out of the car, only to see she is neither in the middle of the spot, and has actually pulled half way through said spot.  Her response?  "I'm not great at parking either..." oooooooooh mommy...

8) My mom hasn't had the easiest life.  She's been divorced twice and married 3 times (This last one's a keeper... promise!).  She put herself through night school and came out with a Paralegal Degree.  Since then has stuck it out at a job that hasn't always appreciated her and came out on top making a great salary, doing great work for a great cause.  She's raised two daughters really well, even if one doesn't always take.  (Not me, I'm the good kid.  Hello?  LOOK at me!)  She's a good Christian... she even does it right when she messes up which is impressive.  Given everything, through all of her quirks, I really admire my mom.   I think she's pretty fantastic, and she's done a hell of a job at building herself a great life!

This posting could go on for days.  My mom is just so cool!  But I wanted to give her a little thanks for being just that cool, for accepting everything I do even if it's not the path she wants for me, and backing me up.... and also for opening my eyes when I'm actually wrong... that 1 time.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Rules of Disengagement...

So the issue with breaking up while living in NYC is that you probably live with your significant other.  It's tough to justify spending that much money on an apartment that you never actually stay at, so most couples get a place together.  No big deal...... until you break up 5 months before the lease ends with no real way of getting out of the lease early.  AWKWARD!

So yes, the DJ and I are no more.  I really thought I'd be more upset, but to be honest?  I'm good.  And I feel like a cold hearted bitch for feeling that way.  I haven't cried, although maybe that will happen later on.  But I am a firm believer in everything happens for a reason.  Look where this relationship has gotten me!

I moved to NYC, a dream of mine for... like... EVER!

I started my own Events company, which is AMAZING!

I landed a great job that I no longer have to leave in 5 months to move to DC with him!

I have made some great friends and contacts!

I am even closer to figuring out what the hell it is I want.

So to be honest, I got a lot more than I'm losing.  I still love him, and I think we really could have been great together.  The issue is that I am very sensitive when it comes to lying and cheating and have zero tolerance when it comes anywhere near either of those things.  He is super insensitive to my feelings, and generally doesn't have any real feelings of his own. 

But now.  I have to live in an apartment for the next 5 months with this guy.  And last night?  He says "where am I sleeping?"  Ok, 2 years ago when we started dating I told him that no matter what, I would never kick him out on the couch.  And to be fair, I have no right to.  We both pay rent.  It's as much his room as it is mine.  And I sure as hell wasn't sleeping on the couch.  Plus, I don't want my very cool apartment to turn into a mess and the living room turned into a bedroom.  So I told him that I would be sleeping in the bed and he could sleep wherever he wanted to.  He opted for the bed.  Good!  Because that's not weird at all!

Funny story.  The pets have taken my side.  This might be the most heartbreaking part of the whole break up.  Puka will always be mine.  She always sleeps on my side of the bed.  I know what she wants just by the way she looks at me.  She's my cat, for better or worse. 

Maggie, the beloved rottweiler, is the DJ's.  Sort of.  I am generally the one to walk her, feed her and give her her medicine.  But technically she belongs to the DJ.  Maggie refused to go to bed with him last night, and instead opted for hanging out with me.  She doesn't listen to him anymore when he tells her to stop barking at the door.  But the minute I speak, she's listens up.  All she has to do is look at me and I know if it's potty time, if she's hungry, etc.  I can't imagine not having her to cuddle with and watch TV with and unwillingly share my lunch with.  I guess I have 5 months to get used to the idea?

But anyway, I now find myself in that weird "yeah I'm single, but I still share a bed with my ex.  Every night." Um.... huh?  So we'll see how long I can deal with that. 

If you have any advice, I'd love it.  I'm considering suing for ownership of Maggie, and then telling the DJ to just move home, but continue paying his half of the rent to just make life easier on all involved.  I doubt he'd go for that, but he really hates NYC so who knows?

Monday, January 3, 2011

So maybe the gym SHOULD have made it onto my list...

So this New Year was spent in a way that is uncommon to me.  It was low key. 

On my birthday this year we were out partying at multiple pubs and dive bars from about 8:30pm until about 6 in the morning.  On the DJ's birthday this year, guests continued to ARRIVE to the party until 5:30 in the morning!  On St. Patty's day this year I was woken up by said DJ with an Irish Carbomb bedside.  We tend to do celebrations up right.

This year, the DJ was out of town... well... DJing.  So my friend Gia (the smartest friend we know) came into town.  It was FANTASTIC!

She met at my office where we had lunch of deliscious hot pastrami on rye at the deli up the street.  Then I got out of work 3 hours early and we went home and lounged.  When it reached about 7:30, we started getting ready, opting to go sans heels this year.  There's snow everywhere!  And it's cold!  And we're going to a pub and maybe some dive bars!  Who are we impressing?  Nobody.  And even fewer strangers will be impressed if we fall on our face on a stray pile of snow! 

So we get dressed in our festive tops and furry boots and head out.  Our destination?  The Half King in Chelsea, where my friend Mike manages and bartends.  First, we catch both the 7 and the E train perfectly!  No waiting!  On New Years Eve!  In NYC!  crazy.  The Half King is festive, but not packed.  We grab seats at the bar and... can you believe our luck?  They have Crab and Lobster pot pie on the menu! 

Something you should know about me.  1) I have a severe love of seafood, especially crab and lobster.  2) I have an obsession with comfortfood.  And potpie?  Very near the top of that list.

We have jalepeno poppers for an appetizer (stuffed with cream cheese, not cheddar.  And they are about 3 times the size of any jalepeno you have ever eaten before.  AMAZING!) and the potpie for dinner.  I am off my diet this weekend, by the way.  We drink, we toast champagne, we have a balloon drop followed by a balloon pop.... it's fantastic!  By 1:30 we're on our way home.  We swing by the pub below my apartment, say hi to the regulars and the bartenders, and head upstairs.  By 2:30 we're in bed and couldn't be happier!

We spend the next 2 days lounging.  We eat, we nap, we watch TV... we obligate ourselves to nothing. 

Beyond the paralising disappointment of a closed Thai restaurant in my neighborhood with the best Massaman Curry you've ever laid lips on, the weekend was perfect.  (I got my curry on Sunday, and all was right with the world again). 

This got me thinking.  I am OLD.  I mean, not really.  I'm 26.  But those are very old mentalities, no?  Not wanting to be bothered, eating, then napping.... and the prospect of bed was SUPER exciting! 

Decision made.  I need to get back to the gym.  Like STAT.  Like Yesterday.  I have to win my youth back!