Wednesday, July 27, 2011

I Think I Just Had A Miraculous Recovery!

No today is not weight loss Wednesday because I was unable to make it to the gym.  Here's hoping I make it either tonight or tomorrow... but if we're being honest that isn't looking like a strong possibility. 

But I think I might have good news!

When I started this blog 7 months ago, I was going through a rough time.  I was going through my break-up with the DJ.  I posted flow charts of grieving to track where I was, and talked about my feeeeeelings a LOT.  Finally I got to the point where I was OK.  I was having a ton of fun and had great friends and was really appreciating the life that I had.  But if I'm honest, I was still really missing the DJ.  Even after all the crap, and how terribly he treated me for the last year of our relationship, I loved him more than I've ever loved anyone and I didn't want to let go of hope.  Hope for what?  I have no idea.  Hope that maybe he would change into the man I needed him to be?  The man I still know is possible for him to be?  Hope that he would figure out that we had the makings of something great that is worth holding on to?  All of the above?  I don't know. 

In an attempt to stop feeling sad about him I took him off my news feed on Facebook.  For some reason when we broke up he was suddenly the top post every time I logged in to Facebook every single day.  It was like somebody was smacking me across the face multiple times a day.  But taking him off the news feed didn't help.  I was still sad.

The crying at night did stop.  The constantly thinking about him stopped.  But missing him and thinking about the future we should have had really never stopped.  Maybe it subsided a little bit, but... never totally gone.

I have lacked any interest in dating, or even going on a date.  And any time I see someone I am attracted to, I come up with a reason for why I shouldn't even take a second look.  My favorite is "He probably has hairy toes, and really?  I don't want to deal with that."

My girls have tried to make me feel better about that by declaring that they have hairy toes too.  This does not help, and also sort of makes me look at them like they're weirdos.  I will turn them on to Nair if it kills me.

Then I went to that wedding and had 3 dreams in 3 nights about the DJ.  Nothing in particular, just that we were together.  Doing normal every day things together.  I woke up and didn't feel sad or angry.  Mostly surprised that I was dreaming about him.  Which just made me think about him a lot. 

Then on Monday night I received an invite from him on Facebook to his Birthday Bonanza (but he forgot an "n" so it came out Birthday Bonaza.  This is not the first time he's done this. It drives me crazy.)  I wasn't sure how to deal with the invite at first.  I knew that he didn't really expect or really want me to go.  But he extended an olive branch, so I had a choice.

I could just click "not attending" on the invite and call it a day.  I would come off as a frigid bitch, but it would be over, I guess.

Or, I could just thank him for the invite and politely decline.

Or, I could just leave it unanswered in my inbox.  (Crap.  I didn't think of THIS option until right now.)

So I sent the DJ an IM.  I simply said "Thanks for the invite.  I'm taking it as an olive branch rather than a serious invite, but I really appreciate it.  If you do end up getting arrested (which he has a propensity to do.  Let's just leave that alone, eh?) and somebody doesn't know the protocol, they can feel free to call me and I'll walk them through it.  I'm sure you'll have a good weekend though."

Simple enough, right?  A little joke, well wishes and a thank you.


You would have thought I just slapped his mother and kicked his dog.

It turned into this huge ordeal.  When the DJ gets upset, he stops making sense.  Basically whatever is jumping around in his head comes out all disorganized and is not discernible to anyone but himself.  But basically, he said that he was trying to be cool about everything, and if he didn't want me there he wouldn't have invited me.  But I have the invite, so if I don't come then he'll take the hint and I wouldn't hear from him again.



I told him that if I didn't come to his birthday it was a me thing, not him.  That I thought it was a time he should spend with his friends and not be worrying about me.  And that if I didn't come, it wasn't me saying I never wanted to talk to him again. 

He said that we don't talk now, so what would be the difference?  (Which only confused me because what?  If it won't make a difference then why is it a good idea for me to come to the birthday at all?)  I was a friend and he would treat me like anybody else.  He said he was trying to be cordial with me but it was clear I didn't want to be cordial.

I said that we have known each other for too long to try to be something we're not.  So if he doesn't want to be cordial to me, then just don't.  That I don't know where I stand in the whole break up/ healing/ over it phases, and he was clearly over me.  So it might just be painful to be there.

He said that he's just trying to get by at the moment, and it is what it is. 

I told him that was a very political response, and that DC was rubbing off on him.

He said he had nothing to hide.

I said "ok, but it hides everything".

So he said he has nothing to hide... again....

After about 10 minutes or more of silence I said, "OK aaaaaaaaand break!  Oh, we already did that."  ya know, just to lighten the conversation?  That didn't work. 

So I went to bed and cried.

I told Terri about the conversation.  She said not to stress because she felt like he over reacted.  When I told Miranda I had been invited to his birthday she asked if I was going to take a date.  THAT would have been awesome.

So I went home last night and started getting weepy again.  And I was just thinking about things and why I was so sad when I knew I didn't want to be with him anymore. 

And then it clicked.

There I am, having a conversation with myself and the DJ in my head, and it just clicked.

The DJ had taken all the things he had done to his ex girlfriends, cheating on Stephanie, being an asshat with Lorelei, and rejecting Lindsay and making her feel like she was a last choice, and he did them ALL to me.  But just to compound it, to make sure he had really damaged me, he added lying and sneaking around, the two things he knew would destroy me.  And then for the icing on the cake, he abandoned me.  He left me to deal with all the things he had committed to handling with me.  He left me in New York by myself.  He left me like so many people had in the past, and the weight of all of this crushed me. 

And somehow, for the last 7 months, the DJ has had some power over me.  And last night, in my head, alone in my apartment, watching Trucker, I told him he couldn't do that to me anymore.

The crying stopped.

I sat up and felt powerful.

I felt together.

I felt like myself again.  The me that I really liked that was independent and strong.  The me that didn't rely on the DJ for anything anymore. 

The reason the DJ keeps drinking too much, and getting arrested, and treating his girlfriends and friends badly, and womanizing.... it's because people always make it OK for him to.  They always show up to his birthday.  They always tell him how fantastic he is, when just a few years ago he treated you like an asshat, or last choice, or he cheated on you.  And if people want to encourage this, then fine!  That's fine.  They can deal with finding him face down in his own urine.  Or pay the bills he can't or won't.  Or find him a job because he can't do it himself.  Or bail him out of jail.  Or walk Maggie when she's crying to go out (which she only does if it's an emergency) because he feels that she can wait until he's good and ready simply because she is his property.

But I won't be. 

I don't accept that DJ.  None of that is OK.  And I certainly won't let somebody like that keep me down. 

And today I feel lighter.  Like physically, emotionally, spiritually healthier.  Even when I try to recall him, it's like my mind pushes even the image of him away. 

I think I'm actually healed!

Monday, July 25, 2011

The 1st Relaxing Weekend I Have Had In The History Of Ever.

That's right!  I did it!  I had a relaxing weekend!  It's Monday, it's raining cats and dogs, and I feel just fine!  Not sleepy or run down or anything.  Just good!

Speaking of cats and dogs....

I almost adopted THIS little beauty this weekend:

This is Cookie.  Everybody say "HI" to Cookie!

Cookie is a 3 year old Boxer/Pitbull mix.
Why did I not adopt her?  I STILL HAVEN'T FIGURED THAT OUT! 

She is absolutely adorable.  They said she weighs 50 pounds but she looked like she weighed about 35.  She was super affectionate and friendly.  She didn't bark.  She is friendly with people and animals of all types..


That means you.  Don't look at me like that.

Cookie was previously owned by an immigrant to the US who didn't have much choice when it came to housing in NYC.  Unfortunately, her new landlord wouldn't allow her to keep Cookie and no one in her family was able to take care of her.  So Cookie is currently at the Humane Society.

And I?  Am DYING to give her a home!  The roommate has reservations because our apartment isn't big enough for 2 pets and she's never home to take care of her.

I have responses for both of those.

Puka takes up very little space, and this little cuddle monkey named Cookie is also quite small.  Our apartment is 900 square feet.  In a 900 square foot apartment I had Puka and Maggie.


Remember Maggie??


Anyway.  I don't think space is an issue.  And as far as the roommate not being around to take care of her...

Hello.  My name is Connie.  I am 27 years old, and have successfully taken care of pets previously, most recently IT'S HAPPENING RIGHT NOW!

Clearly this is still in the back of my head.  I am leaving for Florida on Friday.  If I get back next week and I call the Humane Society only to find that Cookie is still available??  She's coming for a visit.  That is happening.  I will take it as a sign.  And Flo will fall in love, and it will be fine. 


Pull it together, Puka.  Not even fancy disguises will
help you hide from this happening.
Anyway. So there's that part of my weekend.

The rest of it contained living at what felt like the center of the earth.  It was 4 hundred million degrees.  On Friday I had won a free happy hour.  $1 Beers, $2  Mixed Drinks?? ON IT!  But I really kind of wish I had the foresight to wear a bathing suit because...

Our friends the FDNY were driving around opening fire hydrants to let people cool off!  On Thursday I posted on my Facebook that they should... and they did!  That's the power of the written word, people!  These girls were ready to go!  Shoes off and both were equipped with bathing suits!  I just walked close enough to get the mist.  To be honest, I should have walked right through it.  I would have dried by the time I got to the bar 3 blocks away.  I would also like to mention the state of this girl's city tan.  It's about like mine.  And now I don't feel so bad anymore.

Anyway, so the bar?  Yeah.  The AC was broken.  WHAAAAAAAAAAAAAT??  Worst situation ever.  So me, Ana and Kelly sat and chugged ice cold beers until we cooled down.  So delish... and I don't even drink beer!  From the happy hour we cabbed downtown to the Rockwood Music Hall, a huge venue on Houston Street with a couple of rooms for live entertainment.  We somehow scored a front row seat in the beautifully ACed lounge!  But still immediately ordered more beers.

The first guy we saw was:

Christopher Paul Stelling... and Kelly's knee...
He had a very cool sound and played a great set!  He was even kind enough to accidentally share his jingle bells with us when they fell off his ankle.  Anyway, super cool and recording his first legit album so check him out!

Then came the main attraction!

Ladies and Gentlemen... Delta Rae!

Ana is friends with the Bass player right there,
And the guy on drums was fun in a goofy way...
The guy on the mic right there almost made me cry
when he sang about his grandfather...

They pulled that huge Grand Piano down from
the rafters using a pulley system... nutso!

Anyway, these guys just came off of a tour and they were really fantastic!  The guy playing the piano, the blond girl singing and the blond guy singing are brothers and sister.  They did an amazing A Capella song that I just loved!  But I don't remember NOT liking anything they did!  So definitely check out Delta Rae at

That venue for "Fire" is actually the venue I saw them in.  Cool right??

On Saturday my friend Davine and I went to brunch.  Remember that name... she's going to be a BIG time actress one day!  She's incredibly talented and seems to have some really great people in her corner.  I'm so excited to see what she does! 

Anyway, we went to Gina la Fornarina on 83rd Street and 2nd Ave.  There's also one on the West side for you locals.  I had the same panini (Smoked salmon with dill creme fraische and a side salad) that I had the last time I was there because it's just so good!  But really?  Everything is delish!  I got a gift certificate for super cheap on  and saved us some money.  Win-win!

Then I went shopping at H&M which was a lot of fun.  I know that I have only lost a small amount of what I want to lose weight wise, but I can already tell a difference!  Things that I think won't fit me or look right actually work!  I got an adorable lace skirt and a fitted slate blue/gray tank top and a light sweater for work.  Adorable! 

It was about that time when Miranda asked if I wanted to meet her at Reservoir bar (her new place of employment which will hopefully help her to leave Planet Hollywood for ever and ever!) when she was done working at 6.  Yeah sure I can do that.  And I did.

And I discovered this:

Do you see what I see?

No. Not the fish

No.  Not the 2 Jumbo Soft Pretzels for $4.50.  Although they are Delicious!

THE BAR BELONGS TO ME!  See?  It has my name on it!  And I take that to mean it's mine.  So that's handy.. ya know... owning your own bar in NYC. 

So there we are, hangin out for like 6 hours when Miranda starts to lose her ever loving mind because OMGOMGOMG RECKLESS KELLY IS COMING IN THEY'RE LIKE ALABAMA PEOPLE AND IT'S MY MUSIC IN NYC AND OMGOMGOMG!


So that happened:

Which was cool!  They just got done playing at the Bowery Ballroom, so I didn't get to actually see them perform.  But they were very nice guys!  Miranda bought one of the band members a drink and he was very nice about it and met us all.  Then there was a guy in a red hat that was with the band....

... or... worked with the band....

... or... came with the band...

... or... ya know... walked in at the same time as the band?  Something like that...

That was trying to get Miranda to come back and "check out the bus".  Ugh.  Please.  Like we haven't heard THAT line a million times!

But I did get to see Kelly (the slightly less reckless one :))  and our friend Steve came to hang out which was super nice! 

Sunday I didn't do CRAP!  I slept in, I watched movies, I had a meatball sub from Luigi's... it was a good day.

OH.  One thing I forgot about!  On Saturday before brunch the Salvation Army Truck came and took all the clothes Flo and I are donating and so I totally got rid of THE LAST CARDBOARD BOX IN MY APARTMENT!!

That's a HUGE accomplishment!

So this week is all planning for Florida and trying to get into the gym and eat healthy so I look as incredible as possible in a bathing suit next week.  Wish me luck!  Because currently I am craving Chinese food and massaman curry.  Ugh. 

OK, I'll be back before I head to Florida, I kind of almost promise!  Weeeeee!!

Friday, July 22, 2011

I should probably catch you up...

So in my prolonged absence, lots and lots has happened!

Let's start the weekend of the 8th, 9th and 10th. 

So on the 8th, Friday, I left work and headed to Miranda's house to pick up a table for the next day's Stella and Dot  jewelry party.  I figured it would be a quick visit.  But to be honest, after you climb the stairs to a 5th floor walkup, it's just not right to stay for less than an hour or two.  So I did.  And then Miranda started talking about Outback and how badly she wanted it.  AAAAAAnd so we went.  SO SO GOOD!  And by the way?  One of the most reasonably priced meals I've had in NYC I think ever.  Granted we did not drink, but I had a fillet, a delish salad and half of a piece of carrot cake.  Mmm mmm mmm!

So I finally made it home that night and got some food together for the next day.  In hindsight, I should have started the trunk show for Stella and Dot at 6pm, rather than 1.  Only Leah could come at that time, and so Leah, Ana and I sat around and drank and ate SO MUCH FOOD before everybody else could show up after work!  But we had about 8 girls show up and orders are still coming in.  By the way, if you are interested in checking out Stella and Dot, or you want to make a purchase, feel free to visit Ana's website at  When you check out, put the host as Connie, and we'll all win! 

OK, so the food.  You guys.  I made so so so much food!  Which is good because we ate almost all of it!  They kindly left me with about 4 pounds of Nutella fudge to finish.  That's good for the diet.  Ugh.  But Anyway, here's what I made:

These are the Nutella Fudge.  So easy to make.

In a double boiler combine:
1 14oz. can of Sweetened Condensed Milk
8 oz. of good quality bitter sweet chocolate chips (I used Ghirradelli)
3 tbsp. peanut butter
1 cup nutella
3 tbsp. unsalted butter at room temperature, diced
1 tsp. vanilla extract

Stir in the double boiler until melted and completely combined.  Pour the mixture into an already greased and lined glass pan/dish.  I didn't have any of that fancy parchment or wax or even plastic wrap.  I literally lined my dish with plastic bags.  Sometimes in NYC you have to be scrappy.  The recipe says that after you pour the mixture into the lined dish that you should sprinkle sea salt on it.  Honestly, I would let it harden for 30 minutes or so before doing this.  That way the salt doesn't just sink or melt into the hot fudge.  (speaking of, this would be TO DIE FOR on top of ice cream sundaes before it's cooled.  Yummm).  Then you chop the fudge up into squares and eat!  Just be warned, they are incredibly rich.  Really.  I had 1 piece and was good to go on my sweet tooth for a couple days.  So good though!

These are Cheese Potato Balls.  I took the idea of this recipe and made it my own.  There was a little trial and error with these, so I'll try to give you the best information I can.  The good thing is that these are something you can prepare beforehand and then just put together in about 15 minutes the day of.  So the night before I made mashed potatoes the way I always would.  I peeled and diced maybe 5 or 6 medium sized potatoes, diced them and boiled them until they were cooked through.  I've gotten some crap in the past for using a hand mixer to make mashed potatoes.  So sue me, I like creamy rather than chunky mashed potatoes!  Moving on.  I use unsalted butter, skim milk, garlic powder, parsley, salt, pepper, and onion powder.  I didn't put as much salt in as usual because I figured these would be mixed with Cheddar cheese, and thus would be saltier.  In hindsight, I should have made them normally.  After you make the mashed potatoes, put them in a container and refrigerate them over night.  I also grated a block of cheddar cheese so that it was ready for the next day. 

The next day, I combined the mashed potatoes and shredded cheddar cheese.  I used enough so that you could see the cheddar throughout the potatoes.  This was another mistake.  Use way more cheese than you think you should.  It will keep the balls more moist (ew.  Stop.) and flavorful.  Then I rolled them into balls, and double breaded them.  I dipped them in egg, then in bread crumbs, back in the egg, then back into the bread crumbs.  First I used just regular bread crumbs.  The second batch I used seasoned bread crumbs and they were much much better.  Then you drop them into a pan of hot oil.  I used a combination of olive oil, canola oil and butter to keep the heat even.  Fry them until they are golden brown, then drain them on paper towels and enjoy!  They're delish!

Here we have pasta salad and taco dip.  Both of these are incredibly easy.  As you can see, I couldn't really get to taking a picture of the taco dip before the first plate was mostly gone.  What?  Ana and I were hungry!

The pasta salad is basically just pasta with a light Italian dressing, Genoa salami, Parmesan, provolone, and whatever veggies you have around the house.  Carrots, onions, and peppers are my favorites.  Toss it all together just before you are ready to serve, or the pasta will absorb all of the dressing and it won't taste quite right.

The taco dip is equally as easy.  The nice thing is that this is so easy to make healthier.  All you need is one 12oz. container of sour cream, one 8 oz. block of cream cheese, seasoning and toppings.  If you make the sour cream and cream cheese light, or low fat, or reduced fat, or whatever you are comfortable with, it will still taste just as delish.  Basically the sour cream and cream cheese are for the texture.  You can season it up so that it won't taste any different, and everybody ALWAYS loves this!  My friend Davine from high school stopped by for the trunk show and immediately asked if I had made the dip that she remembered from my high school graduation party... nearly 10 years ago!  She said she had a dream about it the night before!  So this is powerful stuff... use with caution :)

So combine the sour cream and cream cheese.  You can either add a package of taco seasoning to it, or you can make your own seasoning with:

Chili Powder
Onion Powder
Garlic Powder

I didn't have chili powder on hand, but I had adobo (which is kind of a smokey seasoning like chili powder), and so I used that instead.  If you like things a bit spicier you can add more cumin.  But basically I do this to taste whether I use a packet or loose spices.  After you mix this together, spread it onto a dish or into a large pan (it makes a surprising amount.  I had enough for 3 servings on a regular dinner plate).  Top with shredded cheese, lettuce, salsa, black beans, olives, whatever you like.  I've seen it topped with seasoned ground beef for a heartier appetizer.  Your call!

Here we have Crab Rangoons and Sopapilla.  As you can see, I had a tough time keeping up with the Crab Rangoons too!  But the recipe makes quite a bit.

I used about one and a half blocks (about 12 oz.) of cream cheese, and imitation crab for these.  I don't prefer imitation crab.  The real stuff is so good!  But my local grocery store didn't have real crab on hand, and the recipe actually called for imitation.  Generally speaking I like to follow the recipe the way it's written the first time, and make changes after that.  So I went for it.  Combine the crab and cream cheese with some garlic salt and chopped green onions into a thick mixture.  The tough find was wonton wrappers.  If you have a local Asian market you should be OK.  But I was not running down to Chinatown to try to find these puppies.  Oddly, I found them at Wholefoods.  I got almost 50 of them in a package for less than 3 dollars which very nearly turned me on to shopping there.  But not quite.  Anyway, using a little water, you dampen the edges around each wonton and put about 1 and 1/2 teaspoons of the crab mixture into the middle.  Fold the corners in to the middle to make a pocket (like above), or pull the middle of each side of the wonton into the middle to make it a little more traditional looking.  You can also fold them in half.  Place them on a baking sheet that has been sprayed with Pam or something similar.  Cook until they are golden brown, and enjoy!  They were fantastic.  I'll make them again.  Hopefully with real crab meat even though the imitation tasted pretty good.

The Sopapilla is a new discovery for me.  And I am officially obsessed.  And it's unbelievably easy to make which makes it a little bit dangerous... 

3 cans of Pillsbury buttered crescent rolls
2 8oz. packages of cream cheese (again, I used a light or reduced fat)
1 cup sugar
1 tsp. vanilla
1/4 cup melted butter (I actually didn't need this much)
Cinnamon Sugar

So basically this is what you do.  Take one and a half cans of the crescent rolls and roll them out on an ungreased cookie sheet. 

Combine the cream cheese, sugar and vanilla (make sure the cream cheese is room temperature or you'll lose your ever loving mind trying to mix this) and spread evenly over the rolled out crescent rolls.  Then roll out and place the last 1 and a half cans of crescent rolls on top of the cream cheese mixture.  Brush the top with melted butter and sprinkle a generous amount of Cinnamon sugar onto the top.  This bakes for about 20-30 minutes at 350 degrees.

Now, that all sounds pretty good, huh?   There are a couple of things that didn't make it that were originally on the menu.  First was the wrapped pizza roll.  This will probably make an appearance at some point.  But the pizza place I stopped by wouldn't sell me raw pizza dough, and my local place was closed and I didn't have time to get the dough before the day of the event.  This was a blessing in disguise because OMG SO MUCH FOOD!  I would have died. 

The second was... well... just look....

Those are Brie Brains.
 So basically, this was the most expensive thing on the menu.  It is baked brie.  Or.  Sort of baked brie.  It's a round of brie with the rind cut off.  Then you spread out puff pastry, spread jam (I used raspberry) to within an inch of the life edge of the puff pastry.  Place the brie in the middle, and wrap the puff pastry around the brie.  Place the brie on a Pam'd baking sheet with the seams of the puff pastry down.  Bake for about 20 minutes (until golden brown) at about 425 degrees.

It should come out with the brie all melty and delish inside of a flaky puff pastry with just a hint of sweet from the jam.

MINE on the other hand caught fire.


One one hand, my fault.  It's PUFF pastry.  Like it puffs up?  Like toward the heat source of the toaster oven.

On the other hand... I WAS BAKING WITH A FREAKING TOASTER OVEN PEOPLE.  What the crap.  Apparently my oven does not get above 100 degrees at the moment (which means that I could more effectively cook outside today.  Blah.) and so I had no choice but to bake my crab rangoons and the sopapilla and the baked brie in the toaster oven.  The rest came out OK.  But this just didn't work.  So sad.

Anyway, the party went well (don't forget to check out Ana's site!) and we all went out afterwards.  I definitely won a free happy hour that is happening tonight (yay!), and very nearly decked two very annoying girls that were better suited to be performing at Cheetah's in Times Square than patrons at Brother Jimmy's.  But it was great to get out.  And Gia was in town for the party which was nice to finally have her around!

Sunday, Gia and I went to brunch (thanks to Terri!) and then Gia went home.  I basically relaxed the rest of the day.

That week I was on my way to the gym.  I stepped outside and found this:

which grew into this:

and this:

and then I found the source here:

A local Synagogue was on fire.  It turned the entire sky black, and gathered quite a crowd.  What I found interesting was that they didn't try to dispel anyone from gawking.  But it was intense.

Wanna hear something ironic?

After I left the gym, I was walking home and came across this:

That smoke in the middle of the background was an underground electrical fire that was popping and basically causing a big ruckus.  The firefighters on the left and right side of the photo said that they couldn't even go near it. 

It seemed to calm down a bit after about 10 minutes.  I'm not entirely sure what was happening.  But apparently the Upper East Side was burning to bits and pieces last Monday!

Last weekend I went home AGAIN.  If you think I'm over it, you should check out my parents.  The first couple times I went home it was all unicorns and rainbows!  "What do you want for dinner?" "Should we go shopping?" "What do you want to do?" 

This time?

The novelty has clearly worn off.  My mom dropped the car off at the train station the afternoon that I was arriving so I could drive myself home because they had plans to go dancing with friends.


I went to a wedding.  I didn't take pictures.  But I did have a good time. 


The wedding was beautiful, I got to see some people I haven't seen in years which was nice.  Weddings do weird things to your psyche though.  It makes you think you want to get married like NOW.  And especially at home, it seems like everybody is thinking marriage by 22 and has done it by 25.  All of my friends younger siblings were in serious relationships with people they were probably going to marry.  I dreamt about the DJ 3 nights in a row since then.  Weird.  Super weird.

So now it's the weekend again.  I can't believe I failed to update 2 whole weekends.  That's nutty.  I apologize. 

This weekend I have good plans!  Tonight I will be having my happy hour from 7-8:30 when I will leave and bounce on downtown to Ana's friend's band's concert (that's a lot of  's).  Tomorrow I have Salvation Army picking up my box of clothes which means the very last of the cardboard in my house will be GONE!  Yay!!  That only took 2 months.  Then I'm meeting Davine for brunch, and I plan on doing some shopping.  I might just lounge at the park with a book to be honest.  Sunday might have to be shopping day.  I wanted to go to the beach but they are calling for thunderstorms and it looks like everybody has to work.  Shopping would be a nice alternative, especially if I get out in the sun at the park on Saturday.

What are you guys doing?  Any major plans???

I WILL update this early next week... promise!

And just because I've been missing them so, here's a clip from my faves...

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Casey Anthony is maybe probably pretty guilty perhaps I think...

And this is why I am never chosen for jury duty.

That and the fact that I still have a Virginia license and haven't lived there for over 2 years.  I should go to the DMV.  Ugh.

OK, so look who's back!!  I said I would and I am!  YAAAAY for the shoddy blogger!

I know that this post is literally weeks late.  We've already discussed here why I am not a journalist.  But when it comes to stuff like this, I like to have all of the (or as many) facts as I can possibly get before giving my opinion.  I think it's only fair to all those involved.

A little background on Connie quickly... I went to college and received a degree in Criminal Justice and minored in Political Science.  I wanted to be a detective or a lawyer.  I didn't pursue the detective position because I was completely uninterested in doing the street cop work first.  Can you imagine?  I am in no way manly, and those stupid bullet proof vests are cumbersome.  Also?  Navy is only my color in small doses.  Not every day.  So I decided to go after the lawyer position.  I went to DC to get some experience.  I realized that the amount of paperwork you have to do as a lawyer is total crap. Also?  Corporate lawyers make way more money than criminal lawyers because it takes so long to get to the point where you can charge clients an arm and a leg for your services.  Otherwise you work for the state.  Let's not even discuss how little money you make that way.  If I'm putting that kind of money towards law school, I want to be crazy rich!

So I went a different route... event planning!  Yay! 

But I digress.  This kind of case is still incredibly interesting to me.  I love fact searching and interviewing people.  I find it all fascinating.  And then the game that is the court room with the strategies and rules... I love it!  So this Casey Anthony thing was right up my alley.

My roommate mentioned it to me a while ago, and I sort of blew it off.  OK, another crazy mom going off her meds and committing horrible acts against her kids.  That's not something I want to spend a lot of time on.  Very morbid.

But then when Casey Anthony was found Not Guilty, and Facebook exploded with outraged followers, I had to check it out.  And so I started reading.  First I read full interviews of friends and family.  Then I looked at pictures from throughout the trial and of the evidence collected.  I read short articles from The Globe and got the bare bones of the trial.

Then I found this blog that linked to a Florida news site.  I was able to go through each day of the trial and see how things progressed.  I was able to hear how each side was argued and what was expected.  I watched 176 videos from the trial including testimony, opening and closing arguments, and some rather hysterical Contempt of Court cases (One guy was sentenced to 6 days in jail and a $600 fine for giving the prosecution the finger.)  during the Casey Anthony trial.

As I read all of this, I got to know a little bit about who Casey Anthony is.  On the outside, Casey Anthony is a really pretty girl. 

According to everybody she knew, she was holding down a pretty good job at Universal Studios (an Events job that I would probably give anything - except a child's life - to have).  She had a beautiful daughter, an active social life, good friends and was doing well enough to pay a nanny to take care of her daughter more often than not.  She was a lot of fun, loved to go out and party, drink, dance, all things most 22 year olds love. 

But the more you find out, you realize there was a completely different side to Casey.  A side that showed her as not so together.  She didn't actually have a job.  There is no one named Zanny the nanny.  There's no nanny at all.  She is a frustrated single mother who just wants to hang out with her friends sometimes.  There are tensions between Casey and her mother.  There are a LOT of boyfriends. 

Casey craved the attention of men.  From what I could tell, she didn't have a best girl friend.  And most of the men she was so close to were ex boyfriends.  When she got a flat tire, she didn't call her father or brother or even the guy she was currently seeing.  She called two ex-boyfriends.  She needed to take a shower before work, and so she called an ex-boyfriend to see if she could use his.  For the short time Tony, her current love interest at the time, was out of town, she took up flirting and spending time with a new guy that she met.  She was very charismatic.  People liked Casey.  She was fun!

The evidence in this case is so so confusing.  Half the time you think that she is absolutely guilty with no question in your mind.  The other half of the time, something doesn't add up and you can't decide if she really did that to her baby girl.

There are a few things that stood out to me:

1) Just before Caylee went missing (although unreported) in mid-June, Casey ran into an ex-boyfriend at a night club.  This interaction was very different from the interactions with the rest of her ex-boyfriends.  Apparently this encounter upset Casey very much, to the point of tears.  It is rumored that Casey had a miscarriage with this particular boyfriend a few years prior.  It is also unclear who exactly Caylee's father is.  There is speculation that she was conceived during a one night stand with a friend who was upset with his girlfriend at the time.  I wonder if, perhaps, Caylee was the supposed miscarriage, and the ex boyfriend had found out about her, causing Casey distress?

2) There is a two week period where Tony was gone, whom she had been staying with.  Her friends were also gone on a trip to Puerto Rico at this time.  She was able to drive Tony's car or her friend Amy's car around at this time.  Friends commented that it was strange how she never wanted to take her car anywhere, instead deciding to drive Tony's while he was out of town.  Shortly after this two week period, Casey's car was found abandoned and towed to a local lot.  Employees with the towing company noticed the stench coming from Casey's car, as did her father when he picked it up.  Her mother couldn't believe Mr. Anthony could stand being in the car even for a short time because the smell was so over powering.  However, Casey made a comment to her friend Amy weeks before regarding a smell in her car.  She mentioned it sort of out of the blue and didn't know what it was.  She thought maybe she had hit something and it was stuck on the car.  A few days later when Amy asked Casey if she figured out where the smell was coming from, Casey said that two squirrels had crawled up into the engine and died.

3)  Casey's father had done cop work in years earlier.  He said he knew the smell of a decomposing body.  And that yes, that's what the car smelled like.  He also said that when he picked the car up from the impound lot that he made one of the employees check the trunk with him because he was scared it was either Caylee or Casey dead in the trunk.  But there was nothing back there.  He didn't report the smell, or the fact that the car had been oddly abandoned.  He allowed Cindy (Casey's mother) to spray an entire bottle of Fabreez in the car and trunk as well as remove items from the car (including Caylee's beloved doll that had been left in the back seat which Cindy claimed struck her as odd).  There was a lot of speculation about the lack of flies that were in the trunk.  Apparently Blow Flies are most commonly seen in conjunction with a decomposing body, or where a body has been.  They found maggots in bags of trash that had been in the trunk, and a leg of a Blow Fly, but no Blow flies.  The expert witness did say that these flies typically would be trapped within the trunk with the dead body.  That they are in there, they feed there, they're stuck there, they die there.  There is no escape for them.  So how did just 1 leg remain?  The expert said that he would expect thousands of these flies in a trunk where a dead body had been, but there were none.  Did Cindy vacuum the car clear of these flies when she was Fabreezing?  I know that when something smells that badly, I do everything I can think of to get the smell out.  Vacuuming definitely is included in that cleaning regimen.  Or did Cindy and George know that their granddaughter Caylee had been back there?  Were they covering up the fly evidence that George's experience told him would lead investigators to know his daughter had done something to Caylee? 

4) Casey's demeanor in the month when Caylee was "missing" is not... typical I guess would be the correct term.  She was happy, partying, excited, animated.  She was the same person she always was.  Even if you were trying to handle finding your daughter on your own (as she claimed she was)... your daughter is MISSING.  She's gone from your life.  There's no way you would be able to be that happy.  Or willing to party that much.  Or lie to that many people day in and day out about the whereabouts of your child.  You would have to break down at some point.  Some sort of emotion, some sort of behavior would have to be seen by someone, right?  After Casey was arrested, and even when she was on the phone with the 911 dispatcher when Cindy first called to report Caylee missing, Casey was calm.  She didn't appear sad.  She mostly seems annoyed at everyone around her.  While in prison, Casey's mother tells her that someone is saying that Caylee drowned in their family pool.  Casey's response? She rolls her eyes as she says "Surprise surprise." and that's it.  However, that later becomes her defense.

5) Speaking of her defense, I was completely baffled by the route her defense team took.  They claimed that not only had Caylee drowned in the pool at the Anthony home, but that George had held Caylee's lifeless body and helped Casey hide her.  They also claimed that George and Lee (Casey's brother) had sexually molested Casey from the time she was 8 years old, and went as far as having Lee tested to see whether he was the father of Caylee.  Casey looked angry and shook her head as her father said, under oath, that he knew nothing about Caylee's death, and certainly didn't help to cover it up. 

6) Casey's ex-fiance, Jesse, was a cop.  Jesse resigned his position the same day that Casey called to inform him that Caylee was missing.  In fact, he says that the phone call from Casey regarding Caylee was the call directly before he called the guard at the back door to the police station that was letting Jesse in to complete his resignation.  It is never disclosed why Jesse resigned.  It has been my experience with cops that you don't enter or exit that field lightly.  It takes a lot of thought and consideration.  And most people that become cops have wanted to enter that field for a very long time.  If they leave, it's for a good reason.  This reason is never disclosed.  I find it strange, but I can't pinpoint why.  And oddly it's the day that Casey tells him about Caylee.  Jesse had known Caylee her whole life.  Jesse and Casey had started dating just a month after Casey became pregnant with Caylee, and had eventually proposed.  I feel like that alone would be reason enough to remain a cop.  To help in any way he could with the investigation.  Why resign?

All of these little facts, combined with the serious lack of physical evidence, is what makes this tough for me.  Caylee's remains were found 6 months after she was reported missing in a wooded lot just a half of a mile from the Anthony home.  They were merely skeletal remains.  They were strewn about the area thanks to animals, and her bones had evidence of animal teeth on them.  Around her tiny skull were 3 pieces of duct tape.  It was stuck in the hair that was still intact to the skull.  One expert says that this tape was placed there after decomposition.  Another says that this is how Caylee was killed.  But nobody knows.  No one actually knows how this little girl died.  There is no tissue to test for chemicals.  No lungs to check for water suggesting she drowned.  There is no damage to her bones or skull suggesting she was beaten in any way that would have killed her. 

This is what I believe.

I believe that Caylee died at the hands of someone she knew.

I believe that Casey knows when Caylee died, and how.

I believe that Casey covered this up for someone for some reason.

I believe that George and Cindy know what happened.

I believe that George and Cindy are covering this up for some reason.

I believe that Casey is not the person who killed her daughter.

I believe that Casey is a liar, and a neglectful parent.

This is what I don't know.

I don't know how Caylee died.

I don't know who killed her.

I don't know how long her body was in the car, or by her play house in the back yard, or in the wooded area.

I don't know if Casey was sexually abused by her family.

What I do know is that the reality of all of these unknowns will go to the grave with Casey.  The truth will never be found out.  Casey is walking free even after lying to investigators, allowing her child to go missing for a month, and for probably having some part in her murder.  I know that Casey is probably the most hated woman in America right now. 

Post-trial, these are the things I've heard.  Nobody (at least publicly) knows where Casey is staying at the moment.  Nobody knows her future plans.  She has mentioned that she's interested in having more children. 

How do you move on from a trial like this?  You were found not-guilty (by a jury that cried over the verdict simply because they didn't have the proof to vote the way their hearts and heads told them to), but you know the general public literally thinks you got away with murder of a child.  YOUR child.  How do you get a job?  Would you want to be faced with a resume with the name Casey M. Anthony at the top for a position available in your office?  Where do you live?  All of your friends have testified against you.  Your family is practically being run out of the home you grew up in by angry neighbors.  What kind of life do you have now? 

I will say that I can't imagine being on that jury.  And what made it even more difficult was that Casey never did testify.  Even if Casey got up on the stand and just told lie after lie, I think it would have been worth something to see how she twists things.  To see her demeanor.  To see her reactions.  Were they alligator tears in the courtroom?  Was she really sickened at the sight of her daughter's remains? 

There are so many questions that are going unanswered.  But do I think Casey is guilty?  Yes.  Of  First Degree Murder?  Probably not.  Of conspiracy?  Of aggravated manslaughter?  Yes.  But we live in a country of innocent until proven guilty, and reasonable doubt.  And normally I would argue that those are good principles to live by. 

But in this case?  It seems cruelly unfair.