Sunday, November 30, 2008

And I'm Spent

The four day weekend was packed.

Saw Four Christmases on Wednesday night. It was pretty good for a holiday confection movie. Of course I'll watch Vince Vaughn in just about anything. (I'm one of only four people in the world who saw Be Cool.)

I went home for Thanksgiving for the first time in years. So much family packed into the kitchen that we had the equivalent of the "kids card table." I ate my body weight in noodles and pie as I silently counted our blessings.

I had the benefit of seeing the Radio City Christmas Spectacular with a 7-year-old on Friday. I told her I looked exactly like a Rockette as I did kicks in the living room before we left. When we got to US Bank Arena she saw a lifesize cutout of the dancers and looked at me and said, "You don't look anything like a Rockette." Hahaha - cute kid. I know she only said that because I didn't have my hair pulled back. Right? Right?

On Saturday I brunched and shoe shopped with Kari, just like old times. She and Julie were back in town from NYC and we all celebrated Saturday night with dinner at Nada and '80s dancing at the Gypsy Hut. I don't understand why those two insist on going back "home." Like having a job and living in a giant, diverse city with so much to offer is that cool. Psshhht.

After all this (and partially because of last night's revelry), I didn't get out of bed today until 1. Then I went shoe shopping again, only this time at the Running Spot. Like I need another pair of running shoes, but seriously, they were on sale, how could I not? And besides, I'm going to have to run off all the pumpkin pie I've been eating.

Speaking of pumpkin pie... Mmmm, I do believe I'm gonna have me a piece right about now. Hope everyone had a fabulous Thanksgiving.

Friday, November 28, 2008

Radio City Christmas OMG

I'm just home from seeing the Rockettes and Omg, they were awesome.

The Radio City Christmas Spectacular was truly fantastic. I expected it to be fun and entertaining, but it was so much better than I imagined. It was light-hearted and sweet and had giant dancing bears and toy soldiers and ice skating - the stage even caught fire at one point - but the Rockettes were the stars, kicking eye-high with stunning precision and poise.

I gleefully applauded as I studied them and wondered, What have I done with my life? I could have been a Rockette... I could have been a contender!

Turns out, I really could have been a Rockette. Maybe. Ok probably not. But according to the Radio City auditions web page I meet the "requirements," which are: "ROCKETTES must be between 5'6" and 5'10 1/2" tall (measurements will be taken). Rockette candidates must be proficient in jazz and tap."

Proficient? I could tap and jazz the roof off US Bank Arena!

Ahh well. I'll be a Rockette in my next life for sure.

Get Well Soon Merle

We were sitting in my parents' living room chatting about country music — Merle, Willie, Waylon, pretty much all the boys — when my dad asked his sister if she had found Merle's address.

Yes, I sure did, she assured him.

Did you send Merle a card, my dad asked.

I did, she told him. A get well card.

"Merle?" I asked. "Merle... Haggard? You sent him a card?"

I was confused. Did we suddenly switch topics to a sick family member? Or were we still talking about country music singers?

"Yes," my aunt said. "Merle Haggard. He's very sick. He has cancer. He's truly in a fight for his life."

"What did the card say, Wanda?" my dad wanted to know.

"It said: 'Get well soon. A friend in Indiana.'"

I started to laugh at how casually they were referring to "Merle." As though it make all the sense in the world that my aunt would send him a get well card, like he was an ill relative. 

"If you had Merle's address you'd want to send him a get well soon card too, wouldn't you Gina?" my aunt asked me. "I'll send you his address, hon — let him know he has a friend in Ohio too."

I reckon I'll be sending out a card soon.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Sunday Fun-Day

Obviously this is not my computer (gasp!), but the pot pie is all mine.

I spent the afternoon at the Coffee Shop on Madison, drinking an iced soy latte and reading the New York Times.

It's been a while since I've tackled the Sunday Times in print. I had missed it and looked forward to today all week. $5 sounds like a lot compared to reading it for free online, but it's not the same. Not the same at all.

Adding to my afternoon contentment was eating a delicious Tom's Pot Pie, which The Coffee Shop gets delivered every morning. Damn it was good. Big hunks of chicken, thick pot-pie gravy, a sprinkling of vegetables (I'd have preferred more vegetables though) and a thick flaky crust. Yum. I was full for hours afterwards.

O'Bryonville was bustling too, which was nice to see. Carolers were dressed up and singing on the corners, balloons tied to meters announced the real beginning of the shopping season with the start of the Running Spot sale, and folks filed in and out of Kismet and other shops.

I stopped in the Running Spot for a new watch and got to say hello to several old colleagues. Bob, the Running Spot's owner, stopped me to tell me the Running Spot was named Store of the Year by the 700-some independently run specialty running stores in the country. (There is apparently some group or club or association they are all members of, complete with a yearly meeting and awards ceremony.)

He was so proud of it he had the award encased in glass with little runner's lights flashing around it at the front of the store. It was endearing.

I don't know if it was the sun finally shining again and the warmer weather or what, but today seemed just about perfect.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Shattered Dreams

My dreams of being a part-time waxer/full-time ringtone maker/possible paralegal were all shattered this week.


Tragedy At Fajita Night

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Bravo Paavo!

Last Sunday I waited for what seemed like forever for a table at Green Up cafe.

Waiting. Waiting. Waiting. Standing in the breezeway waiting. Waiting. WAIT! Omg, it's Paavo!!

You'd have thought Barack just walked in. I grabbed my phone and started snapping pictures, hopeful I'd a decent one off before we got seated. But because the hostess at Green Up SUCKED, he got seated before us (even though we were there first) and as he ascended the stairs I snapped a few more shots.

Then, as brunch luck would finally have it, we got seated right next to him!

He was with a woman who I presume was his wife, their two kids (do they have two kids?) and another gentleman.

I didn't hit my stop watch but it seemed to me it took his wife about 30 minutes to order some pancakes and tea... then again she was also ordering for the kids, so that probably takes longer.

Midway through the brunch the older gentleman fell off his chair and landed on the floor... on his back, like FELL OFF HIS CHAIR. Paavo was saying, "Bad chair. There is something wrong with that chair," while his friend worked on getting up off the floor.

Like Paavo, I thought the chair had broke. I was thinking, What an outrage! A chair at one of Jean-Robert's restaurants just broke and threw Paavo's friend on the floor!

But actually no, the chair didn't break. When the guy got back up he hopped right back on the same chair. Weird.

But the best part, after the falling off the chair drama was over, Paavo looked at him and very calmly but sincerely asked, "Are you ok." The guy responded casually, "Yes," and that was that.

Wildly entertaining.

Honestly, once I realized he was ok it was all I could do to not crack up, I mean the guy fell off his chair right in front of me. And I was also wildly impressed with how nonchalantly the table dealt with it. A little while later Paavo's son fell off his chair, but he's a kid so... that sort of thing happens to kids.

Later his little girl ran around taking photos with Paavo's digital camera. I did my best to ingratiate myself to her - I was smiling, posing, I may have even waved, I can't remember - in the hopes of her taking a shot of me and having a photo of myself on his camera. But it didn't work. She was a well-behaved little girl and wasn't going to get in anyone's face with a camera.

Unlike me! Enjoy this badly lit photo of my brunch idol.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Can't Touch This

You probably don't know this about me, but I am freakin' master at Ms. Pac-Man.

Billy Mitchell is afraid of me, and rightfully so. I grew up in Marion, Indiana, where there is nothing to do but play video games and toilet paper people's houses. (Friend's houses, of course.)

I flexed my Ms. Pac-Mac my prowess last weekend at Western Bowl, sending several friends chasing ghosts and fruit in a futile attempt to beat me. Ha. Fools.

I might roll 3 gutterballs in a row, but I'm agile and deft when it comes to the hand-eye coordination of eating pixels in a maze of digital lines.


Wednesday, November 05, 2008

Black (Kitty) Power

I came home from work tonight to find Cassady gorging on Ocean Explosion cat treats and moving the furniture around.

"What are you doing, Cassady?"

"Whatever I want." Then he raised his paw at me.

Obama's win has gone completely to his head.

Gooood Morning! La la la la la la la!!!!

The weirdest polling location ever...

...someone's garage

This morning I woke up before the alarm for the first time... ever?

I woke up tired and happy and elated and thinking it was almost too good to be true. Was it real? Did I dream it?

It was truly a remarkable night.

Like most folks telling tales of going to the polls yesterday, I have my own voting story.

I got to my voting place about 5, all rarin' to color in my block when they told me my poll location had been changed.

Uhh, what?! When? Then one of the volunteers (who was a sweet man about 75 years old) tried to give me directions to my new voting place.

I just got pump-faked by the board of elections! I told a friend. If you think you're going to keep me from voting you got another thing coming Hamilton County BOE!

Of course the directions to my new voting place are wrong, but I find it eventually and it's... In someone's garage?

Oh yes. In someone's garage. (See photo above.) Whoever lives there is a machinist, judging by the two giant lathes with metal scraps curling out of them.

Inside this garage are about 6 voting booths, a covered pool table with about 3 inches of dust on it and a fire place with fake wood in it.

Well of course my address doesn't match my driver's license so I have to run back home (praying the entire time) that I have a bill or something proving I'm legit to vote there.

But I just paid bills and I'm not sure if I have one and if I have to cast a provisional ballot I'll totally flip and if Barack doesn't win Ohio it's all my fault and... Deep breaths, deep breaths. There's your cell bill. Oh thank god.

So I strap on my helmet and decide to ride Stella there because I feel like she's good luck, and she is because then I'm presented with my official ballot, which I darken in for Obama so thoroughly I wonder if I'm bleeding ink to the other side.

I'm not entirely unconvinced they didn't just shove my ballot into that fireplace as soon as I walked out. It wasn't exactly "official" looking there in the basement/garage, you know.

But anyway...

As the returns rolled in last night I felt immense pride for Ohio, and even more pride this morning for my home state of Indiana. Finally!

And can I just say, Michelle Obama rocks my world. I've never thought too much of First Ladies. Yeah, First Ladies, whatever, who cares. But I'm beyond excited about Michelle. I can't wait to be completely obsessed with her!

Monday, November 03, 2008

Sunday, November 02, 2008

Congrats to Tammy and Derek Camaro-Hair!

About a month ago I decided to go as an 80s bride for Halloween - poufy white dress, big hair, blue eyeshadow, frosty-pink lipstick, white pantyhose. You know, me in 1987 minus the wedding dress.

My friend Missy quickly followed suit, envisioning the awesome 80s bridesmaid dress she could wear as my Halloween maid-of-honor. And we decided Adam would be the 80s husband (mullet, mustache) and Dave would be the best man (mustache, gold chain) to round out our "Wedding Party."

It was like the Halloween gods were smiling on us. My friend Mare just happened to have gotten married in 1989, and she kindly loaned me her wedding gown, complete with layers and layers of lace, a crazy-long train, lace sleeves and a beaded gauzy neck. Missy found a poufy-sleeved peach bridesmaid's dress on eBay and paired it with some bitchin' white heels.

But it was the guys who took one for the Halloween authenticity team - each growing beards so they could have 80s porn mustaches for Friday night.

The excitement of our costumes sparkled in our eyes like 80s glitter.

Adam and I adopted the names Tammy and Derek Camaro-Hair for the party "our reception", and I spent the evening yelling at "Derek" that he was ruining our wedding night by boozing too much and not carefully enough carrying my long-ass train around. Helloooo bridezilla!!

It was like an actual wedding in many ways. For one, Mare's dress was about a size too small for me. I feared gaining an ounce of weight before Halloween knowing I wouldn't fit into my wedding dress if I did - just like a real bride! We staged a bouquet toss and "Derek" inappropriately took off my skanky sexy garter. HOTT.

I also couldn't go to the bathroom by myself because I couldn't adjust the tiers of wedding gown or unzip by myself. (When you see real brides heading to the bathroom with a slew of bridesmaids it turns out it's because she can't pee with all that dress on.)

My "maid-of-honor" and "husband" also spent inordinate amounts of time trying to "bustle" my train.

It was actually kinda cute when several girls - dressed as Kim Kardashian and an FBI agent - rushed to Missy's aid yelling, "We need to bustle it! We're bustling!!!" And they all fussed with this 19-year-old dress to make it more manageable and to keep me from killing myself tripping over it.

Unfortch, it didn't help that much.

I was on my way to sneak a photo of some couple that was mashing beside the dance floor (very wedding reception!) when my giant dress got in the way of my 4 inch heels. Wedding dress, veil and blonde wig went up in poof of white, and then we all came crashing down to the floor. How embarrassing. And on my wedding night! Thank god it didn't happen during our first dance to Journey's Faithfully.

I looked around for "Derek" to help me up and saw that rat-bastard pounding a gin and tonic in the corner, probably seconds away from hitting on my maid-of-honor.

Whatever, though, because I totally got macked on by Bret Michaels. Talk about an 80s dream come true!

It was the raddest Halloween ever.