Friday, January 28, 2011

The Big Picture

The Boston Globe's Big Picture is one of my favorite sites. Their photo blogs capture the best and worst of the world - wars and unrest, love and celebrations.

Usually I'm in awe of what it captures - beauty and brevity and pain and hope. At least once a week the pictures make me smile and/or tear up.

Today they made me tear up with a tribute to the Space Shuttle Challenger disaster.

It's heartbreaking to remember how excited everyone was for Christa McAuliffe, the first teacher in space, and how we sat in our classroom to watch the launch. Our class didn't really know anything had gone wrong. We'd never seen a space shuttle launch before, so watching it explode and break apart in the sky didn't have the immediate impact on us that it had on our teacher.

When I lived in Northern Virginia I once spent about three hours walking all around Arlington National looking for the Challenger Memorial.

A friend of mine insisted on seeing it. Everything is BIG in Washington. So we expected to easily find and come upon this grand scale tribute. It's the opposite. The Challenger Memorial is small, just a plaque really with all of the astronauts' faces engraved into it.

But it's a cemetery, so probably a wise choice to not to erect some giant rocket memorial in the middle of all that hallowed ground.

If you're hanging out on your slick iPad right now and you want to check out some more photos from the Big Picture here are a few. Remind yourself:

How small you are

What wonder there is beyond what we can see

That nature is unforgiving

That war is brutal

That bobsleds can unite

That love is essential

Thursday, January 27, 2011


In journalism -30- signifies the end of the story. It's a copy editing symbol for, "you'll never get the last 20 minutes of your life back. Sorry for making you read this crap story! Hahahaha!"

But Friday it meant my bestie Missy is actually 30. Which means in addition to being suspicious and untrustworthy to anyone under 30, she'll now be called "ma'am" and is one early bird special away from an AARP membership and having her skin hang off the bone like a boiled chicken.

To prevent this awful fate, we celebrated calorically, at night. Wine. Crab cakes. Gossip. I wondered where in the hell I went wrong in life. I mean, why couldn't I have been born a boy, or gay, so that we could date each other? Is that too much to ask?! Well God, is it?!

Happy Birthday to one of my favorite girls on the planet.

* Pretend like this photo was taken earlier this week at a birthday dinner and not this summer at a sweltering Red's game. And pretend that I'm not biting her head but instead looking reasonably at the camera, like Missy.

Monday, January 24, 2011

Yes Please

I love a good Groupon. I love restaurants with weekday vaudevillian alpacas even more.

Friday, January 21, 2011

What I Learned in Puerto Rico

• Four years of college Spanish, completely worthless.

• HOLA! with conviction followed by "Madalla Light," solid.

• Translation for "oatmeal raisin cookie," pointing and smiling.

• Adding "o" to the end of every word makes it "Spanish," for example, OMG-o.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Because I Work With Emblems of Fashion, Apparently

Picking out my clothes for work is one of my creative outlets. Not every day, and it might not always seem like it, but I put some thought into my clothes. I accessorize. I layer. I wonder if anyone will notice the subtle but important difference between the black shoes I wore Monday and the black shoes I wore Tuesday. (They look completely different, ok.)

Sometimes I build entire outfits around a pair of shoes, or earrings, or maybe a belt I want to wear.

Like today for instance, I wanted to wear this brown leather belt (can you ever go wrong with a brown leather belt? Hell no) because I saw a photo of Gwen Stefani in a magazine wearing a long belt twisted like this. It looked awesome.

Basically, I want to look like Gwen Stefani at all times. But since I work a normal job and am not a singer, band leader, fashion designer or married to the insanely hott Gavin Rossdale, I thought the belt was close enough.

Just when I go around thinking, "Damn, Gwen Stefani is gonna want to be my bestie today!" I have my colleagues to howl at me:

"Haha! Oh my god what are you wearing?! It's a toga! And what's up with your belt?!"


"OMG!!!! You look like a pirate!!! ARRRRRGH!!!!"

Really now people… The first jab from a researcher who's shirts are so tight the threads are holding on for dear life and the latter from the Boss Man who accompanied his insult with, "Permission to come aboard, Matey!"

I seriously do not know why I waste my creative sartorial choices on these fools.

So tomorrow I have decided to up the ante. Cords, a tunic and a belt are so outrageous, are they? Tomorrow I am building my whole outfit around my black and white polka-dotted knee-high Wellies.

They're gonna lose it. I can't wait!

(Side note: Ok fine, not my best effort here, but come on, I just got back from Puerto Rico, it's a blizzard outside and neither my nipples nor my belly is showing, which is more than I can say for them.)