December 31, 2009

Wrapping it Up and Moving On

Today's Plinky question is as follows:

What do you think you'll remember most from the last year?
List your favorite memories from the previous 12 months.

I like this question, mostly because I've been focusing a lot on what I hated about 2009, and that list is long, and is likely to be what I'll remember most. But I'll also remember that I moved here on my own, with no safety net. I went to Ohio State game watches and visited friends across the state of Virginia, put a tie on my cat and got up close and personal with the First Lady, went to two weddings and joined two Tri Delta alumnae organizations, watched terrible television with BC and got hooked to Dancing with the Stars, and even learned to cook a meatloaf. And that was just the four months that I was in DC.

I graduated from college, turned 22, started writing a book that I continue to pursue, sent query letters to book agents, said goodbye to Ohio and Ohio State. I watched my brother become a man, watched my sister become a Mrs., held my step-sister's newborn baby. I got "engaged" to my brother-in-law's brother. I lost two grandparents and went to my first two funerals (I guess these aren't my favorite memories. I digress.)

Here's to 2010 being better.
(God, it needs to be better.)

(In New Zealand, it's been 2010 for nine hours already. Which is comforting in an odd way. I am really ready for it to not be 2009 anymore. I guess this just draws light on the fact that this is sort of an arbitrary cutoff and new beginning. Whatever, here's to new things happening.)

New Year, New You! And other obnoxious cliches for December 31st

So I guess it's cliche to write resolutions, so I won't do that.

The main thing I want to say here is that DR. DREW DIRECT MESSAGED ME ON TWITTER.

I have had a giant crush on him for quite some time, and it doubled in size when he did that CelebRehab show where he trapped celebrity drug addicts in a house and then came and did therapy with them. It was life-changing, and also, as mentioned, made me fall in love with Dr. Drew. He's just plain attractive. In an old man sort of way.

d_cd_c Ok! mag referred to @drdrew as "secretly sexy." This is not a secret. I've been saying it for ages. Though no glasses in the photo. Boo.

And thank you for the kind remark. So keep the glasses?

d_cd_c @drdrew oh yes, keep the glasses. And keep making good tv. I'm so much of a fan I can't even....I'm squealing a bit. Or like a lot.

Thank you Chris...

I think this is the best thing that happened in 2009. I have a thing for men in glasses.

Also, in 2010, I'd like to travel, be able to run 2 miles, talk to the Air Force recruiter, find a job, and work on my depression. Yeah, I said I wouldn't, but what of it?

Happy New Year!

December 29, 2009

On Being a Tourist

The moving date has been set for January 18th. I am going to move in with momma ten days before my 23rd birthday. Woof.

But because it's been set, I feel more relaxed: I am less worried about money knowing that I won't be paying February's rent (provided I hear back from my potential subletter or find another one?).

Also, because I don't have a job, I plan to take advantage of the time to visit museums. Today I went to the Newseum, one of DC's more popular (and one of DC's few paid-entry) museums. It is fantastic, really worth seeing, even if you have to pay $20 (which I didn't--I got my ticket for $10 on Groupon). Probably my favorite exhibit was the far too small one on Tim Russert. They recreated his office in the NBC building and played clips from Meet the Press, interspersed with interviews from his colleagues, where they discussed his journalistic style and preparation, his love of the Buffalo Bills, his relationship with his family, and the et cetera. I got choked up, I have to say. That man meant a lot to me, to a lot of people, and, to me, exemplified what journalism should be. He asked challenging questions ("Is this a war of choice or a war of necessity?"--sorry I couldn't find the video, which made me appreciate the events of November 4, 2008 even more), but never impossible ones, and was never unfair or mean the way that journalists so often can be. He was also just genuinely likable. And I miss him.

The Newseum website has a slideshow of some of the artifacts found in Tim's office, and one of my favorites in context was the letter he wrote to David Gregory's son, Max, on Max's literal birthday in 2002:

Dear Max,
Welcome to the World!
Always respect your mom and dad.
Your Meet the Press internship awaits.
Your Friend,

They also have daily papers from around the country, and you can look up your hometown's front page, which is cool in a very touristy/no DC resident is truly native kind of way. They clearly know their audience and are good at pandering. Which I appreciate. Also they had the last edition of the Cincinnati Post blown up pretty big, along with a few others that have died in the past few months. Which was weird in a "my mom loved that paper" sort of way. (As a side note, I met a girl working at Honeybaked that graduated from college in 2005 with a degree in journalism whose professors said "newspapers will never go away," and I think the fact that she was selling hams with me speaks volumes about that how that mantra worked out.)

The Newseum, as you would expect, also had exhibits on events and the way they were covered. While it was interesting to read about the Unabomber's treatise that the Times and Post decided to print against the public's (and their own) judgment, I will be even more interested to come back in 20 years and read about how blogs and Twitter impact some other, also hugely important and probably horrific, event.

The Newseum is also known for its Pulitzer Prize-winning photography exhibit, which was jarring and comforting and shocking and amazing in a way that only photography can be. It's incredible, the things people are capable of doing with a lens. Some of those images will stay with me for years to come--Obama's speech in the rain a week before winning the election, women jumping from an Atlanta hotel fire, children riding a horse, Ruby shooting Oswald. Some of them I'd seen, of course, but still. A great display. I wish I had been able to go into the museum when no one else was there, so I could stay with each image as long as I wanted, study each one, truly appreciate it. But alas, DC is a tourist's city, and I was one of many trying to appreciate the photographs.

Because I'm too dumb for this city, I didn't bring my camera and thus don't have photos of any of this, including the 6th floor terrace that overlooks Penn Ave and the Capitol. Big Mistake.

December 25, 2009

Merry Christmas 2008

What a difference a year makes?

I don't know, it's been a really rough year, what with both my first and second funerals, and the mess that is my financial plan, and my lack of hope for future employment.

And I really just feel like I'm much closer to where I was a year ago than I'd like. I'm about to move home with my momma again, I'm working at the Honeybaked Ham again, I'm asking for money for Christmas again, I'm unable to buy gifts that I wanted to be able to buy for my family again. I feel pathetic, which is new.

I know it's not my fault and it's the economy and this is how everyone is and blah blah blah, but don't you understand that that is not what I want to hear right now? Everyone around me is all, "I'm not worried about you, you're really great," and it feels nice, it feels good, to hear that, but then it's also like, maybe you should be worried about me? Maybe you should have concerns about where I am in life, or what the hell I'm going to do next? Because I have those concerns. And it doesn't really matter what I'm capable of doing, because no one will look at my resume and why should they when there are people with real-world experience that are unemployed also? And I don't know anyone who can help me, which is what really matters, because my friends/people my age are also unemployed.

I don't know, I'm scared, and it's Christmas, and I feel very much like there's a lot of family asking me what I'm going to do next, and I feel like saying "pray real hard" isn't really an attractive answer. I'd really like to have an answer. Any answer, really, other than "well they're opening a Red Robin in Florence where I'm going to try to wait tables. I hope that this is a job I can actually get, but even that I'm holding my breath over."

In any case, it was a nice Christmas. Ender was his usual ridiculously cute self and everyone is having a grand time, reading, playing Sudoku, watching basketball, or otherwise ignoring one another. (We really do love one another, it's just that we are an unusually solitary family. That said, we have played several family games tonight, and it's been really wonderful.)

Pepsi, please.

And no, that was not a typo. Deal with it.

December 17, 2009

Does Southwest serve Pepsi?

Southwest Airlines hands out napkins on their flights that have maps of all the places in the US that they service, and I just love them. I like to think, as I fly to Baltimore or Louisville or wherever, about where I would fly if I could fly anywhere Southwest flies. I'd go to Austin, maybe, or Seattle. I've never been to Portland and Kate loves it; maybe I'd go visit Dominic in LA. Did you know they fly to NOLA? Pete Delkus, my favorite weatherman of all time, told me to stop by the station if I'm ever in Dallas.

I think of this only because I found a napkin from some long-forgotten flight in the bottom of my purse. I've never been to any of the above-mentioned cities, though I really would love to see all of them.

In other, sort of related in an 'I-really-want-to-travel' kind of way news, this news came out today:

And I'm going to apply, re: my book. Only blog-style, as opposed to a full book. I think the WSJ made the article sound more like I need to be interested in building a soup kitchen, rather than making a statement about culture in America, which is what I actually want to do, and I think it's something that qualifies me. What I'm saying here, is, "we can't all build soup kitchens," and I think Pepsi's goal here is something that my book/blog fits in with. Or at least I'm going to attempt to prove that in some way.

In other news, tomorrow is my last day on the job. I'm freaking out about being unemployed, but am beginning to think seriously about moving home, and the more I think about it, the more it comforts me. I can apply for jobs anywhere, if I'm not paying rent anywhere. I can save money. I can, if I finally get an agent or Pepsi's money, just take off and write. And I want nothing more than to be able to just take off and write.

Nothing. More.

December 04, 2009

Tiger Woods

So, like.

I watch a lot of golf, love golfers, have always wanted to be a card-carrying member of the TOUR Wives Association.

So, like.

Obviously, people ask me about Tiger.

I still maintain that if you're going to marry an athlete, make sure it's a golfer, and part of the reason this is such big news, aside from the fact that it's Tiger Freaking Woods, Y'all is that golfers don't really make loud, public, embarrassing moves. And that this is kind of a huge embarrassing move. Not the point, the point is that everyone and their sister station is polling viewers with "Should Elin stay with Tiger?" and the choices are "No, cheating is unacceptable." "Yes, if she gets a new pre-nup agreement." "Et cetera."

No one seems to care that she possibly seriously injured him. I try to point out that if he were a woman, people would be outraged. She would be in jail, or we would at least be having this conversation. We would be talking about whether he should forgive her. But I understand that this is not the world we live, I just cannot understand the disconnect. I cannot understand it. I will not stand behind what he did, no, but I also cannot let people ignore the idea that this is a pretty heavy potential, either. It frustrates me to no end. (Also, I remember saying when they first got married I didn't think it would last. Not really a bet I wanted to win, but still.)

In other news, only 10 more days at my current job and then I am officially jobless. Put into motion: Operation TOUR Wives Association? (Top 50 on the money list? Need only apply/take me to dinner.)

November 25, 2009

Thanksgiving Eve, 1888

Happy Founder's Day, Tri Delta! This year, I went to two different Founder's Day dinners, and I have to say: I miss my old Nu Chapter. I mean, the Maryland active chapter invited everyone in the area and did the whole ceremony and it was lovely, and I really do enjoy meeting all the old alumnae. But there's something to your own chapter, your own traditions, your own home.

The DC alumnae, as I've mentioned, are all much younger, and had a much less formal affair. I've enjoyed getting to know them as well, as they are, in general, in my age range and have a similar life situation or have been in this life situation recently. It was also nice, but also not what I am used to.

In other news, Bailey and I had "the talk," as in, at what point do we give up on the dream? At what point do we say, "We're hemorrhaging money and wasting our time"? At what point do we decide that we won't find jobs before we run out of money? So we set a date to move out if we need to do so. I really hope we don't, I am terrified that moving out makes me a failure. Everyone continues to tell me that I am not a failure, that it's not my fault the economy sucks, and so on and so on, but... like, you know. That doesn't pay the bills. It's even hard to find a waitressing job in this town.

I still love the city though. It pretends to be southern, when, in fact, I would say it is quintessentially east coast. My Bostonian office mate tends to disagree and says people in D.C. are "laid-back," but she clearly has no idea. I'm so happy to be back in Kentucky. God, I miss this place. People are so helpful! And not crabby! And not pushy-shovey-in a rush! Gosh. Fantastic. But D.C. is great, too. Just not the same.

Also, yesterday, mom put my adorable 2 year old neice on the phone with me. Mom said things like, "Kyleigh, say 'I love you Aunt Chris!'" And there was repeating of that, among other things. Like "Come HOME, Aunt Chris!" Only, when Kyleigh says it, it comes out like "Ankis." Which is good enough for me. I'm stealing that baby, I swear. It's hard to be away from her and my other two nieces and to know that mom has them over regularly. I feel like I'm missing out on a lot here.

It's going to be weird this year, empty, almost. I lost two grandparents this year. Not that I ever saw Honey on a holiday, but still. Just a break from the way that I think about my family right around the same time everyone spends thinking about their families. And for the first time in my life, I drove all day Wednesday instead of being in place when and where I wanted. It was so convenient, even at its most inconvenient. My holiday routine was a well-oiled machine. This is a new holiday in a lot of ways, a lot of heartbreaking ways.

Mom and I went through some old Facebook photos and saw one that Kate tagged last Thanksgiving of all of us with Granddaddy sitting at the table, him facing out, with all of the rest of us actively engaged in conversation. It really was his time. He just couldn't do the things that he wanted to do, used to be capable of doing, depended on doing. He was frustrated with his body, and his body was not able to respond. It was his time. We also saw pictures of Kate's wedding, which he did not attend and Grandma did, and it really IS her time. Not for the same thing, but you get the point. Woman's in her prime.

This post has turned a lot into my growing pains. I feel I have a lot of those lately. But I have a lot to be grateful for.

1. The family, obviously. I feel this is a cop-out, so I'll break it down and make myself feel better. It's long, so maybe just skip to your section, you blog-skimmer, you.

a. Parents/Step-parent-I've been blessed, really, I don't know why, but somehow I got the perfect set of parents. I think Kate got it right when she said once, "if I had different parents, I would have ended up really messed up." Or something like that. What I'm saying is, genes only go so far, and we have great ones, but Tim just refilled the oil in my car and my dad understands my life situation in a way that makes me feel better about not having to explain, and my mother, well, my mother and I are the same person and I am glad of that because WHAT would I do if she didn't get me? It takes a lot to get me, you know?

b. All four of my grandparents. This is going to get emotional if I go on too long, but I've got a man as stubborn as an ox and his dedicated wife that could move a mountain if she put her mind to it, no lie, on one side, and a hilarious man and a woman that encouraged me in a lot of ways to do what I wanted, but to do it well on the other. As Kate said, "Chris, as I see it, we're nearly indestructible." I am sad to say that the number was cut in half this year, but grateful to have gotten to know all four in my lifetime and to have developed real relationships with them.

c. Siblings, duh. Kate has already come up like a zillion times in this entry, but like. You know? She reads this, so that's awkward. But she was there for everything, literally, and she and her husband, Thomas, who is also incredible, were lobbying me to come live with them in Chicago, and not a lot of siblings would allow that, let alone want that, let alone lobby for it. I lost my chance, but it still meant a lot to me that they were willing to offer themselves up in that way. And they got married this year, and they're so perfect and so perfectly wonderful. Kit is the sweetest little girl I know, I am constantly impressed with her. I feel like every time I see her she tells me something about herself off-handedly that is unexpected and amazing. And Eric, who I think is smarter than me, which maybe I should be less thankful for and more freaked out by? I don't know, but it's kind of cool. He's a really cool kid, has his ducks in a row, is confident. He has girls following him around like impish puppies. I was more impish puppy than Pied Piper myself at thirteen, so holler for old Eric. Not that I think Eric is a rat drowner OR a kidnapper. Even at thirteen.

d. Step-Siblings. I got two sisters and three nieces out of my mother's merger with Tim, and I feel like I couldn't possibly be luckier. I am stealing that baby, I tell you. They're both sweet and offer all kinds of opinions and advice about my plans and the boys I bring home and everything else, whether I ask for it or not (that last part goes for Kate, too).
d. Cousinsssss! At the funeral, Steve and I exchanged eulogies, and Steve was the first person to see it. How do you eulogize someone you've known your whole life? All I could think after was "I FORGOT TO PUT IN THE STORIES ABOUT HIM GRILLING OUT AND OMG GRANDADDY ROY STYLE BAKED POTATOES." But he was really excited about what I wrote. When I sat down, he held my hand and said, "See? I told you it was perfect." He's just a doll. And Anne, I've gotten to know her better since we live in the same city and everything. She cooks for me, and told me that she knew Jon wasn't right for me from the moment we met. And the robot jokes are hilarious. And EA and I are new blog/g-chat buddies, so despite being across the country, we're closer now than I think we've ever been, and I'm going out with her and Emily on Friday, which is also an opportunity to say that I think Emily may be the nicest most adorable person I've ever met, and also the most perfect candidate for a nurse I've ever met. And Mary L, who is brilliant (and knows it, but she's 17 and brilliant, I think I knew it then, too). And Alex, who is finally following in PROUD FAMILY TRADITION and becoming a Wildcat. And is also funny and has always been good looking, which is good because he's got to carry that family name down as the only male cousin. No pressure. I remember reading to him in the sun room, and now he's reading TEXTBOOKS. IN COLLEGE. God.

e. Aunts and Uncles. I got so many of those, I can't tell you. But I guess I gotta try, it's THANKSgiving! But Aunt Jane is the reason why I was able to go to BOTH funerals this fall, and literally would have been unable to attend Honey's at all if it weren't for her, and she's great. She's kooky as all hell, but in a good way, and her heart is in the right place. I feel like that sounds like, "oh we hate her but she has good intentions," which is NOT what I mean. She's fantastic and a sweetheart and her kookiness is just what makes Jane Jane. And Uncle Chunk, who invites me to dinner anytime he hears I might be in Kentucky, and is also part of the funeral-plane-ticket association (a not for profit founded in 2009), and he's sweet and GOD I love that man's accent, and I can hear it especially when he says 'Chrissy-Bug,' which only those two can do. Aunt Vickie & Uncle Jim are the couple I hope to be when I'm old and married off (no longer the spinster), seeing the world and being awesome in general. Denise, who runs the whole family, and the whole family would be run into the ground if it weren't for her. And Tom, who basically gives his life for my grandparents, which I know he doesn't do for me, but seriously I am eternally grateful that someone was there for Danda when he needed help, both with himself and with his wife. Ben, who is BAAAAAAAAACK! And too much fun. He's funny and thoughtful and a great father.

...I think I may just have to be thankful for my family for now. That went on for, like, ever. And it feels like it's midnight and I've just looked up and it is totally not socially acceptable to go to bed yet. Ughhhh. There's always next year to count my blessings, yeah? No, but seriously, I'm going to try to gather some more thoughts together tomorrow.

November 19, 2009

June 20th, 1953

Since I mentioned the anniversary in the last post, I thought I'd show you how lovely they were on that date.

Life Advice From Granddaddy Roy

So my grandfather died. This is delayed a great deal, but the sentiment is the same.

My grandmother was married to him for 56 years, an eternity, and it's clear that she doesn't really know what to do with herself. I left yesterday morning, and she insisted on making me breakfast. She asked what I wanted to drink and when I said, "oh, don't worry, I've got it." She goes "NOW YOU LET ME BE BUSY." So I let her pour me a glass of OJ to go along with the bacon and eggs she also insisted on making. As she was making breakfast, she misted up a bit and said, "now this is when I start to miss Roy." Roy E., as she called him.

Later, I asked her if I should strip the bed I slept in or make it, and she said I should leave it. So there were comforters and pillows all over the place and I feel a little guilty, but on the other hand, what is she going to do? She dropped me off at the airport (something she wouldn't have been able to do before, since she's had to call someone to keep an eye on granddad in order to leave the house for quite some time) and it was clear that she felt pretty good about being able to do that. Then again, I overheard her at the visitation saying "You know, I'll be able to leave the house now. Of course, I'd rather have Roy in the house than be able to leave it."

The woman is a force of nature, and the only ever time I'd seen her cry was on their 50th wedding anniversary, when she said "Fifty greatest years of my life." (Of course, she hadn't lived 50 years without him, but it was touching all the same.) She plans to go to England for her 80th birthday. She has all her original parts. She makes a mean pie (though with the wrong flour it gets all messed up and she gets really upset). And you know what? She'll be okay, eventually, and she'll get to England and eventually get used to the empty house. She deserves to do whatever the hell she wants for the rest of her life.

As for granddad, well. It's hard to know that he ended the way that he did. Part of me wishes I had had the chance to see him one last time, to say goodbye, but part of me is glad that I only saw him toward the beginning of his steep and (really, thankfully) quick descent. He was stubborn as a mule and sharp as a tack and I think he would have hated knowing what was happening to him. That it only lasted a few weeks at the worst of it was thankful, if heart-wrenching.

As for me, losing two grandparents in four months is not how I imagined the fall season going. I think I sort of thought that they were invincible. In a "I know everyone dies eventually" kind of way, I never really thought they would die.

Anyway, here is the eulogy that I gave at the funeral (something grandma insisted on, and how do you say no?):

Life advice from Grandaddy: Keep your chin over the table. Quit bangin' on that piano. Find a hollowed out oak.

He was stern, yes,believed everything had a way, and wanted all of us to find our way, to be the best we could be, and also he wanted us to not get grandma's jam on the carpet. We didn't, around granddaddy, because he inspired us in a lot of ways to be better than we were, to sit up, to be respectful.

But he was also a loving man. He was funny, goofy, told stories. He didn't want us bangin' on that piano, no, but he did want us to play it--he got a lot of joy out of hearing the music of Steve and Jim, one of his favorite things in the world. Like I said, he inspired all of us to be better at whatever it was that we were doing, whether it be attempting to play piano or acting in school plays--granddad came to my 5th grade theater debut--or studying in school. "Are you getting all A's?" He also took me with him to the golf course a few times, his favorite place on earth, let me drive that golf cart he loved, and taught me to putt. He wanted us to be the best at everything, and I think that's when I first discovered I'm really good at watching golf.

One of my favorite things granddad did was come in and tell me bedtime stories, and I used to pretend to not be able to fall asleep until I heard one. They were all the same, but it was something about his voice when he talked about the cold and the snow that inspired the little boy and the little girl to stop worrying and hide out in an old, hollowed out oak until morning. I loved it, and the same man that fought in World War II and won a Distinguished Flying Cross and golfed three days a week with his buddies and told me to keep my chin over the table loved telling me those stories.

He was a great man, and a great grandfather. I love him and I miss him.

Roy E., the man that caused my grandmother to swoon:

Granddaddy Roy, the man I knew:

November 08, 2009

So remember my happiness entry?

Everything I said in it was true.

Which makes this whole "I'm miserable" thing that much worse.

I broke up with Jon. Yes, he's the type of guy that blahblahblah all that stuff I said before was true, and I'm sure it will serve to make someone else happy, but he's just not the type of guy that would make me happy. So I'm single, I'm happy to have made the decision I did, and I'm trying to enjoy being 22. I think I have a date Friday? I'm unsure. The point is, Jon just wasn't right. And I feel like I noticed that before he did, but I think he'll notice it eventually, if he hasn't already.

I still love this city, and I still think of it as kind of magical, but I am concerned about rent. About groceries. About everything. I'm not sure I can get on my feet in a city where everything costs this much. I'm putting a lot more on my credit card than I ever have, and it makes me squeamish. And my college loan payments haven't started. I don't know how I am going to be able to do it.

And the internship has gotten worse. I hate it. I still like the idea of what I'm doing, and everyone says that's a good thing, except that it's not when the economy sucks bad enough to where you can't really be choosy. So it might be more advantageous to feel still at a loss as to what it is that I want to do so I could justify applying to every vacancy on a website that doesn't work, as admitted by the government itself. That said, if I could work anywhere on earth, my number one requirement would be that it NOT be where I currently am. They have made it very clear that I will not be returning, and have already extended an offer to one of the other interns to return. They clearly think I'm incompetent, which is so frustrating because I feel like I'm working my ass off for them. And they don't seem to think that I am intelligent at all, and one woman implied that I was a liar the other day. And I just feel so much like they don't know me at all. And they don't care to. And it just sucks.

I wrote that if I fall on my face, I have options. Which is true, except that I feel like I'm failing. And that's the worst feeling ever.

Anyway, I need to stop complaining. And start the process of getting ready for the week at this terrible terrible company I call mine at present.

I'm trying not to complain. As you can see, it's working wonders. Eff.

October 11, 2009

The Perfect Weekend

So this weekend BC and I went to visit Kerri, one of our sorority sisters, in Virginia Beach this weekend. I swear, it was the perfect perfect weekend.

I had had kind of a rough day at work on Friday, but BC picked me up and we went straight from there to Kerri's house party.

First, she has an INCREDIBLE home. So large and spacious and wonderful. EVEN A GUEST BEDROOM. That is how I will know I've made it in life: I can afford a guest bedroom.

Second, Kerri is one of my favorite people, like, ever. So obviously upon arriving, the entire day's stress was just like...done. And here's Kerri, waving Kamikazes in our faces and making us merry.

So, yeah, Friday immediately upon arrival, we were integrated into the house party and met a bunch of people in Kerri's new hometown. It was a night not unlike my final quarter as an undergraduate, getting silly with a few Tri Deltas and whoever else decides to join in. We even met girls who were DDDs at a different school, which is one of my favorite things in the world.

Saturday we woke up and pretty much had to pry ourselves from the bed. We went to Waffle House and ate too much and talked too much and giggled too much. And ate too much. Seriously.
I hope you believe me next time I say "we ate too much" without my having to physically show our gluttony. We ate all that. BC didn't eat her waffle in the place, but that was the only thing that actually came home as opposed to getting eaten in one sitting (she's weak).

We also drank a lot of Pedialyte, which is not recommended for taste. But nonetheless helped tremendously, along with a post-brunch nap. Holler.

We watched the Buckeyes win a game and then went to the ocean and little touristy shops and a seafood place and it was just a ton of fun. And I love love love BC and Kerri. This is us in front of a giant Posidon statue, one of the symbols of Tri Delta. Unfortunately the random we got to take the picture didn't understand what we meant when we said "please get him in the photo too!" Whatever. It's cute anyway.

Today, we woke up and made a million GHOUL cupcakes!
Unfortunately, they looked better than they tasted. BUT THEY LOOKED SO CUTE! And they were sooo fun to make. (And this is my current computer background.)

We also went to the beach this afternoon and walked around. It was just a lovely time. Unfortunately too cold to swim, but thankfully we didn't burn our bridges with Kerri and we will be back. Hollerrrrrr.

I think that photo about sums up the entire weekend.

Except the part about how I had a dream where I was dating Aaron Carter, and he owned a cupcake store. Bailey and I agreed I probably shouldn't even bother sleeping again, since it can't possibly get any better than that.

October 02, 2009

As Promised...another reason to be happy.

Isn't he the greatest cat in the entire world? That's what I thought.

P.S. BC and I had our housewarming party, which we called "Sir's" on Facebook, and he got ill during. Apparently he's allergic to the medication. So I've stopped giving it to him. And I feel a little guilty, but ultimately, he's doing fine and he was much more unhappy about the pills than he ever has been about his diet. Or I mean, I think.


You know what? I'm happy.

I'm stressed as hell, yes. I had to go to a restaurant down the street to apply for a job as a server because I am worried about the size of my first paycheck, delivered yesterday. I freak out about my grocery bill, because I've never purchased groceries with my own money before. Who knew meat costs so much? And, like, why? Don't they breed chickens by the thousands to lower costs?

Work is great, except. Except. I love the work, the theory of what I'm doing, what I feel like I'm accomplishing, but there's the pace. There are days when everyone is overly stressed out and no one has any time at all to breathe, and then there are days when I spend all my time on gchat. I like PR, I hate agency life.

But you know what? I'm happy.

Jon is...I don't know, the type that buys flowers on a Thursday because. Because it's Thursday, because he's going out of town for a weekend, because. Because. The type of guy that tells me I'm being totally ridiculous when it's deserved, even when I hate hearing it. The type of guy that nags me when I need it and shuts up when I can't hear it.

DC is... I mean, it's the greatest city on earth. I got lost the other day (I blame Jon. So does he. He's just that type of guy.) and ended up in front of the Capitol. And as upset as I was that I had no idea where I was supposed to go from there, which stresses me out to no end, there I was. In front of a building where so much happens, where everything matters and everyone cares. I can't explain the way I feel about it, except that I feel like it's just magic. There's an electric feeling in the air, a breathtaking quality, even aside from the stunning aesthetic. I have always sort of known that I wanted to live here, and there I was. Here I am.

And even the job. I love the work. I love the theory. I think I want to be in communication, I just am quite sure agency life isn't for me. And that's a pretty huge step toward figuring out the rest of my life. And you know what? I'm happy with steps. As long as I'm taking them. Here's to progress! Right?

Am I doubting myself? Yes, of course. But there's also a sense of, you know, here I am. There I was. I'm getting to where I want to be--wherever that is--and knowing that I'm getting there is a sort of achievement on its own. I still get emotional about things like seeing new photos of my nieces. That I won't see until Thanksgiving. That's hard. Thinking that there's a small chance I won't do what I want to do--what I've always done--for Thanksgiving. That's hard. (Thanks to that one guy, I've secured a ride for Thanksgiving via BC. But she's unemployed and hoping to get a job in local news, which would require her to work Thanksgiving. And every other holiday ever. If that happens, I'm SOL, because by the time that happens, flights are likely to be out of my budget. Like they are now, only more so.)

But I feel like growing up is a process, and a painful one, and one that still causes me to get misty-eyed at Twitter updates, text messages, blog posts, Facebook statuses, emails, gchats, and everything. Like hearing that Patrick is at a bar with Tri Deltas, girls that I love with a very dear friend that I miss and haven't seen in far too long. When he visits, I'm used to that meaning that I get to see him. But instead it means he gets to see people I want to see. That's hard too.

But you know what? I chose this. I chose wisely, with a healthy disregard for my emotional safety, with an attachment to a city I never knew could yield things to me the way that it has (an attachment strengthened in a way I never guessed), with the fear of failure that I also think is a little healthy, and with the knowledge that it's entirely possible that I could fall flat on my face. But also with the knowledge that should that happen, I've got a few options. And you know what? Those options are pretty damned good. And I'm happy.

September 18, 2009

Life in Our Nation's Capital for Real

I guess today is the perfect day for an update. It has been kind of hectic in the nation's capital.

First, the apartment is great. Sir doesn't hate it, which is a plus, and now sleeps on my bed every night. The pill issue is annoying, but I've gotten used to it. If you follow me on the Facebook, there are several pictures posted that sum up the place, and maybe in a less lazy moment I'll put some on here also. Or one of my adorable cat in a tie(!).

Work is really great. I like the type of work I'm doing as well as the type of clients I am working with. It's pretty crazy somedays, and totally quiet others, but all the same, I like the people here a ton and the work is always interesting. In other, less exciting news though, I just found out what this company pays an entry level person. It is not a lot. Like a whole lot of NOT A LOT. To the point where my take home pay as an intern is probably more than what it would be if I were hired on as a real live employee. Kill me now.

The things they say about crazy partiers in this city are true. I went out with the Tri Delta alumnae club here for a happy hour this Tuesday (it was at a little wine and cheese place literally five doors down, couldn't skip!), and was planning to just have a glass. Then everyone else ordered a second, and what am I supposed to do? Then they all decided to go to a bar in the area, and what am I supposed to do? So it's like 10pm on a Tuesday, right, and I'm all, I HAVE TO WORK TOMORROW! And they're all, SO DO WE! WELCOME TO DC!

...So yeah, Wednesday morning was my first day as a real DC resident, apparently. I guess McDonald's breakfast in this town does a lot of workday business.

Also, yesterday, I went to a farmer's market that Michelle Obama has been trying to organize for some time, and since it's the first of several this fall, and her pet project (read:White House Victory Garden), she spoke about getting kids to eat healthy and the start of a new program that allows farmer's markets to take WIC and other government food programs; also, when you use those at farmer's markets, you get double your money. Which is cool, because a lot of families on those types of programs can't use their resources for fruits and veggies, which are more expensive in a lot of cases than less nutrious things. Basically, what I'm saying is, I buy all her hype. I have a girl crush on her (like all American women, I think).


image from

September 05, 2009

Day Before

In Columbus, leaving tomorrow AM at 9. Sir is doing well, considering the circumstances. He has eaten a fair bit and has found a few favorite hidey-holes in the guest room where he has been staying all day. Also, BC got him a tie to wear as a housewarming gift. I'll upload a photo when my camera comes, I cannot wait to see it on him! I decided not to give him his pills today or tomorrow given the trauma he is already experiencing. We'll start up again Sunday.

While Sir seems to be functioning at least somewhat normally, I was unable to sleep last night and it's 1am at present. I'll get there.

Tim drove me up here in his truck and we unloaded it and got it all into the UHaul. Now all we have to do is make the 7 hour trek. Awesome?

(Technically, because its 1am, this means that I move TODAY. How exciting/terrifying/nervewracking/sad/wonderful!!! [My whole day was like MadLibs: emotions edition.])


September 03, 2009

Last Day in Town

So, I went to the mall today. And I got my hair done, and I was rushing out to go to The Little Place, which is this little greasy spoon in Burlington that I love and needed to visit before moving. It closes at 3, which I don't really understand, but I refuse to complain because I love it so. So anyway, it's 2:15 and I'm telling myself if I can get there by 2:30, that's not too terribly rude, and I can eat quickly and be out by 3.

Well, so, I'm like speed walking through Florence Mall, and this lady at a kiosk accosts me, as they are wont to do, and I'm pretty effective at blowing her off. Then she goes, loudly, in a thick accent I can't place, "CAN I ASK YOU A QUESTION?" And damn my natural instincts, because I hesitated. Briefly, but still. These women are paid (how much?) to seize the hesitation and ATTACK.

And attack she did. In retrospect, I'm glad, because this is the conversation that transpired.

Me: Yes? (WTF? Is she going to compliment me? They ARE getting longer, and relatively evenly, if I do say so myself... I still haven't picked up on the sales pitch. What can I say, I'm exhausted and stressed.)
Woman: Ooooh.
She grabs my hand and picks up a 4 sided buffer.
She begins buffing, calling out each of the sides as she uses them.
RED SIDE! Removes the yellow!
BLUE SIDE! Increases bloodflow to your nailbed! (Does the first one not do that equally as much, because of the movement? Is there some magic Dead Sea shit in there I don't understand?)
Then she rubs the white side on my hand to demonstrate that it is, in fact, as soft as silk. (I'll give it to her AND the Dead Sea people, it was.) Then she moves to my nail, saying, as she's doing this:
Me: ...
Woman: SAY HELLO!! (Refuses to stop buffing until I say it.)
Me: Hello?
She stops rubbing and moves the buffer.

(I said hello to my nail today. I may just curl up and die.)

But the thing is, I swear to God, it's amazing. I keep touching that one nail. It's been hours, even. I called the kiosk to ask how much it was.

Totally unfortunately, it only comes in this kit thing, and:

Me: So how much is that kit?

...In other news, I move tomorrow.

That G-D Cat

Today Sir reached a new low.

I had to shove the pill down his throat, coated (as per usual) in butter, and he spit out the pill. Totally clean.

Ugh, what am I going to do with him?

September 02, 2009

And Now.

So I packed my last box tonight. I labelled it, "Chris: last box." (Everything else has my name and some mostly accurate description of the contents. I feel "last box" sums up the contents, though: 2 or 3 books, a magnet board, a ton of hangers, a couple of shirts, a purse or two, my Dolly Delta bear, and other odds and ends that hadn't worked their way into other boxes.)

It's weird, seeing everything I own all folded or stuffed into boxes and ready to be moved away. And also kind of terrifying because I couldn't tell you where any of my stuff is. Like, I am sure that the copy of A Prayer for Owen Meany is in a box, one of them, but I could not even venture a guess as to which one. And what if I want to read it? In the next day? I haven't read it yet, and I have been meaning to, and really, talking about this right now is making me feel kind of queasy. (This is also why I hate lending books, I need to know that if at any time I want to read whatever book it is that I want to read, I am capable of doing that. Being limited by my boxes is killing me, even though I am happily mid book.) I also, you know, am not sure if I left enough out of boxes. I have a few tee shirts out for moving day and the next couple of days, and I think I remembered everything, but what if I didn't? You can read about my unfortunate packing habits here.

I am excited, though. I am excited to fully unpack for the first time, really, since I moved out of my childhood home. I mean, I moved to and from the Delta Shelta on campus and all that, but even then I had boxes at home with everything for whatever season it wasn't. And then I'd move home for the summer and keep the vast majority of everything in a box, waiting to be taken back to Ohio.

And now.

I'm also really emotional. I'm leaving my mother, who is trying to hold it together for me and kind of not doing so hot. It was safe here, you know? And now...what?

I'm just glad Sir is coming with me. And Mr. Bear. It's like a dream team of tear catching. (Seriously, why is it that fur--artificial or otherwise--catches tears better than anything else?)

On a side note, Sir did really well with taking his pills for two full days. Then he realized that I wasn't just giving him pats of butter for the hell of it. Now, he licks around the pill and then gets mad. (Notice he gets mad after licking the sides of the butter, which I think he does just to piss me off.) I have officially begun shoving them down his throat, coated in butter. Awesome.

This from a cat who has literally stolen the following things off of my plate: pork chops, ham, a peanut butter cookie (it didn't agree with him), spaghetti, yogurt of any variety, ice cream, corn out of my Chipotle burrito, cake, and many, many more. Yet. SOMEHOW. I can't get him to take a g-d pill. Then again, he also refuses to drink tap water.

August 31, 2009

Can we talk about something?

Now, I'm not one to sit around and bellyache about what W. did during his eight years in office (much), and I feel that blaming him for the cancellation of what was once my favorite show everrrrr, Reading Rainbow, is laughable. What he did with the education in this country, though, is also laughable, in a sad way, but I just got finished saying I don't bellyache about his presidency. Much.

The issue I'm having isn't even that. There's really no room to teach kids that reading can be fun, delightful? There's no room for telling kids that no matter what their interests are, there are tons of books that they could LOVE to read? Because we have to spend all our television time teaching phonics, something that parents should be far more responsible for than PBS? Is it really that big of a problem, are kids really not being read to, to the extent that we can no longer assume that a large enough number of kids know how to read and might possibly be actually interested in reading for the sake of reading? And enjoy LeVar Burton's voice the way I did? (Or less than the way I did, but more on that later.)

See, every time my teacher was out sick in first and second grade, we watched Reading Rainbow. And I'd watch it at home on my sick days. AND EVERY TIME, I wanted to read the book he showcased. And I used to write down the title and the titles that the other kids on the show used to recommend (remember that?) for future reference, like when mom would take us to the library--which was always such a treat--and I'd come home with stacks and stacks of books, some of them recommendations from LeVar himself. Granted, I grew up to be an English major, and can hardly pass a sign or a bumper sticker or instructions without wanting to know what they say, which is usually a letdown, but I CANNOT STOP reading, even six or eight words at a time, and I'm ALWAYS reading a book, something, anything I can get my hands on, and also...I mean, this is kind of a secret, but...

...I mean, my first crush was LeVar Burton. I just remember his voice. His voice, God, his voice! That man has the greatest voice of all time. I can still hear him saying, "but you don't have to take my word for it!" and, of course, "See ya next time!" (BECAUSE HE WON'T SEE US NEXT TIME! BECAUSE THERE IS NO NEXT TIME!) So maybe that's the problem I'm having. Certainly that's why I kind of misted up a bit about the cancellation. Twice. Once when I heard about the announcement, and once more when I read an article that sort of recapped the show. Because when I was a kid, that show made me unbelievably happy. And while it got a lot of kids to see that they could actually (gasp!) enjoy reading, for me, it encouraged what was already a growing love of books. And I think it's sad that the powers that be have determined that there's just no room for that anymore.

Sigh. See ya next time. Or, you know, not.

August 28, 2009

Lex Vegas, as Coty says

I'm in Lexington, visiting my grandfather and spending some quality time with him, mom, and uncle Tom.

Danda (that's an old family term for him, God knows why, but Tom called their grandfather that as a kid and, again, God knows why, but the name got transfered) is very glad to be back from the rehab facility he was spending time in pre- and post-funeral. We went and visited and he kept talking about all the rules this place had. Apparently he got in trouble for getting up in the middle of the night to go to the bathroom by himself. They insist on two nurses accompanying any guests to the restroom. Which is in his room. And three feet from his bed. It's hell getting old I guess.

That said, he looks absolutely fantastic. For him, I mean. He's on oxygen, but he's still openly complaining about...well, about everything. That's how you know he is on his A-game. (They just showed a clip of Teddy Kennedy's service on KET, and he says about the gospel singers, "Well, they're kinda screechy, aren't they?")

Also, mom and I ran some errands for him, and we walk in the house bearing groceries, et cetera, and there's Danda, cubing cheese. Do you know what that means? Because in this house, its the obvious sign of forthcoming pimento cheese. Oh. My. God. That stuff is best described as a magic sandwich spread. I watched him make it. I hope someday I'm that good at making it. Unlikely.

On another note, Sir's second visit went fine. Ran more tests, sent me home. The worst part was the stuff they put on him to take blood, which was a lot smellier this time than I remembered. Maybe that's because last time I was so upset I didn't care and wanted to hold him anyway. Last time, when we got to the office, once he got out of the cat carrier he walked around the office and was fairly quiet. Not so much this time. He yowled even after he was allowed to roam around. Which was obnoxious. And loud. All the same, they called today with test results, and everything is totally normal, so the hyperthyroidism hasn't done any damage (except maybe the heart murmur, but the first vet said would likely go away after some time on the medication). I start being a pill pusher tomorrow. Should be an adventure. Twice a day? Here goes nothing, I guess.

August 25, 2009


My baby is sick.

I took him to the vet yesterday to get him a sedative, as per the plan. The vet informs me that he has a heart murmur that puts him at risk for a sedative. The vet also says if it were his cat, he'd give him the sedative, but you never know with cats, and it could be just fine but it is always risky, and with the heart murmur, more so.

Then I ask about his weight, and casually mention that Sir used to be, like, 16 pounds so I worry that he weighs too much.

The vet says, oh. Well, in that case, he might have hyperthyroidism, which is common in older cats and could also be the cause of the heart murmur. We'll take blood and call you with results tomorrow. Treatment for this is medication twice a day usually, sometimes once a day. Or a shot, but with a cat this old that seems inefficient (by that they mean my 14 year old cat is a geezer and is likely to keel over at any minute, but I know that cats tend to live to age 21 in this house and I intend to make sure Sir is no exception).

Regardless, Demon that Google is, I go home and look up hyperthyroidism in cats. It isn't a pretty picture. Causes heart problems, kidney failure, excessive vomiting, irritability or skittishness, unhealthy metabolism hikes (the vet used the choice phrase "wither away to nothing" with regard to a cat's ability to eat nonstop and still not gain or maintain weight). Good thing I was already a sobbing wreck. (Also, this sounds far more like Lucy than Sir, if anyone is keeping track.)

So they call today and tell me that he does have elevated levels and needs to be medicated. So I get to take my cat (who, again, hates the cat carrier and the car) back to the vet to test his kidneys to see if there is any damage already and begin the medication. Then in 3 weeks, post moving day, I get to take him to a vet in DC to see how the medication is doing, see if it has any side effects on his kidneys or whatnot. (The vet says this is very common and that if I take him to a different vet with the paperwork, they'll know exactly what is happening and what to look for, and that it's better to start sooner than to wait until I move and find a vet to start there. Are they TRYING to freak me out, or trying to make money, or being serious? Regardless, I'm going in again Thursday. Does anyone know a good vet in the DC area?)

Apparently this happens to a lot of older cats. In my head, I'm thinking, "Jesus, on top of paying for him to live with us and litter and food, I now have to pay for medications and two more vet visits. He's old. Average cat life span is about 15. What happens if I don't treat him? I mean, he may die earlier, but if I hadn't mentioned the weight loss, I wouldn't have known. And what's earlier? A lot of cats don't live to 14 at all, let alone...however long this will expand his life. And if the crazy neighbors at our old house had actually kept track of their cats (or spayed or neutered every once in a while) he wouldn't exist. And if I hadn't beaten him down into loving me, he'd still be wandering around our old neighborhood, presumably with hyperthyroidism, living a happy life." (I have very long thoughts in my head). In my heart, though, I'm thinking, "MY BABY WILL DIE TOMORROW IF I DON'T GIVE HIM THIS PILL AND I DON'T CARE HOW MUCH I HAVE TO PAY FOR IT I'M EFFING DOING IT AND HE IS MOVING WITH ME AND I WILL GRIND THAT PILL AND PUT IT INTO YOGURT AND HE WILL BE FINE FOR TEN MORE YEARS AT LEAST!" (I have very loud thoughts in my heart.) Also, the vet said something about this drastically improving his quality of life, and now that's just mean not to, right?

I mean, I have money saved up, and rent for Sir, as already mentioned, is far less expensive than I anticipated, so a little extra money is worth it, right? I would feel terrible if I just let it go. So shoving pills down my cat's throat is my new M.O. Awesome.

Just as a side note though, BC and I discussed, and Sir will NOT be taking a sedative, so I went to the vet for that one thing that I won't be using and got a ton more than I bargained for.

August 23, 2009

Moving Daaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay

So my lease starts September 1, but due to fanagaling and BC being in our nation's captial ahead of time, my official move in date has been set for September 5. I drive to Columbus the 4th, load up the UHAUL, and leave for my future home at 7am the following morning.

I'm getting nervous and excited. Friday I purchased a mattress bag and a cat carrier (it's really cute and has bones on it. Some people might think this makes it a "dog carrier," but I'm going with a very strict definition of "cat carrier," which is, "something comfy for a sedated Sir to move to DC in"). Sir may never forgive me for the sedative and carrier combo, which will likely make him the crankiest feline everrrrrrr. (Except for the feline that is Sir tomorrow, when I put him in the self-same cat carrier and DON'T sedate him, in order that I take him to the vet and thus make him angry at me for at least a week.)

He's already kind of mad at me (being standoffish and yowling a good deal) because he has figured out that I'm moving. He'll look at the boxes, and look at me, and just start yowling. It's kind of cute, in an obnoxious, loud kind of way.

Speaking of Sir, he is sound asleep on Mr. Bear (a creatively named bear from my entire childhood, that still sleeps on my bed). He is just...perfect. I am so infinitely happy that he can come with me. For quite a while I thought that it was possible I'd have to leave him at home. I was inconsolable. Heartbroken. I thought he was going to cost too much if we were even able to find a pet friendly location at all. As it is, I pay an extra $15 a month for him, and its $15 well spent. I love my cat.

Today, though, I started packing. It doesn't look like I have that much stuff when it comes to it, but I feel like my perception will change as I start boxing things up and running out of room in the truck. When I move. On moving day.

It's starting to feel real. Up to now, it's been... not real. Like, oh yes, we see this place, and, oh yes, we like it, and, oh yes, now we're signing leases, and, oh yes, now we're talking logistics of the move, but still. It's felt very much like it's someone else's life. I guess it kind of is someone else. A new, grown up Chris, not much like the one that I am currently. Yikes.

August 14, 2009

September 11,1930-August 8, 2009

So. I've had a fair number of important life events occur in the past two and a half weeks since I last wrote.

I got an apartment, and my lease beings September first. I like the place a lot, and it's super metro-friendly. Great access to restaurants and important shops like the one and only Target in DC and a grocery store. Most important, Sir is welcome to accompany me. And his rent is cheap.

Bales got a temporary position in broadcast, putting us in a similar position and allowing us both to feel much more comfortable about the big move.

In other, less exciting news, I've now officially attended a funeral. My grandmother, Mary Jane--or Honey--died on Saturday morning. Kate wrote about it here.

I guess I don't know how to feel. I never felt like she loved me. I know that's a terrible thing to say about a grandmother, but I just felt like she found me to be, I don't know, a pain. She introdcued me to her friends at her 50th wedding anniversary as follows: "This is my grand-daughter, Chris. She's not as nice as she could be."

It was awkward at the funeral and the wake (complete with quite a liquor selection, at her request), hearing her friends talk about how much she was loved, and to feel like I never knew that woman at all.

Sure, I have good memories of the Joseph Beth trips with all the grandkids (I have all kinds of memories--and photos--of all the grandkids together, but can't think of when we would have all been together, but all the same). We all got to pick out a book and she would take us to the cafe and oh! the cheesecake!

But I also can't explain the pain that it causes me to hear my mother say, in response to the question "how are you?" after her mother died, "I don't know. I guess I sort of feel like I've been mourning not having a mother my whole life." And then, breaking into tears, "Am I a bad mom? Do you guys hate me? Will you guys come visit me, and not resent me for wanting that?" The fact that my mother fears that--again, I can't explain how much it hurts to know the pain that her mother caused her. (She's an excellent mother, by the way, and I won't resent having to visit her.)

And also, on the way to Jacksonville 3 summers ago, my father and I played this car game where you ask "Five Things" questions, such as "What are your 5 biggest regrets?," or "What are your five favorite memories?" In response to the question "What 5 things are you proudest of?" my father answered, among 4 other things, "Teaching your mother that she didn't have to listen to her mother, how to deal with her, how to be okay with that relationship."

On the other hand though, I cried deeply. I miss her. She was funny. She had the hardest head of anyone, and--er--I may or may not have inherited that. People loved her, and she was, at times, fun to be around. She caused a lot of pain, yes, but she also was my grandmother, and I loved her. I wish I had been able to laugh with her, to feel the things that her friends said to me when they shook my hand. Or to understand what exactly Jane meant when she said, "She loved you. Those are the things that never go away." Or to know what happens when she is Mary Jane, and not Honey, the name we used as her family.

I don't know, as I said, I'm just not sure how to feel. I told mom that it ended up being harder than I would have thought, and she said, "Of course it is, for you. You're a sap."

Stolen from Kate's blog, Honey's wedding photo, fifty-five years ago the day before my sister's wedding:

(As a side note, she hates the dress. I love it, except that I learned recently it was green, and she referred to it as "the practical choice.")

(As another side note, mom insists that the sap comment was not ill-intentioned, and she loves me, and wants me to inform the blogosphere that she's the best mom ever.)

July 24, 2009

Things are Looking Up

So, on my last voyage to our nation's capital, I left my Coach bag (seriously, I wouldn't use the brand name at all, except that it was expensive!), containing my Coach wallet ($!), my driver's license(s, don't ask), a checkbook, 2 debit cards, a credit card, and various other artifacts of life that inevitably collect themselves in the zippers and hidden pockets of my belongings on the Metro.

This was, of course, supposed to have been a great day. Bales and I were looking at apartments and getting very excited about actually being big people. I also secured a (paid!!!) internship at a company about which I am very excited (the internship as well as the company itself). I had met the HR woman before, and I was told that they wouldn't hire me entry-level because they essentially only hire people that have interned for them, and in rare cases, for other companies that do similar work. In very rare cases, they look at other people's resumes. Rare.

So, I have high hopes for this (PAID!!!) internship. Again, I'm excited about the company, excited about the work, and excited about my prospects for staying there long term.

Then I left my purse on the Metro.

Good. God. It was an incredible pain to get home. For future reference, if you're planning on doing any air travel, I would recommend having a state issued ID. Just, you know, to make things easier. Regardless, I did get on the plane. And the flight was on time, and I was home, and replaced my ID, got a new checking account number, put fraud alerts on the three national credit bureaus, et cetera.

We did not sign a lease, forcing us to push back the ideal August 1 moving date (though it may be best anyway, given that I start my (PAAAAAAAAAAAID!!!!) internship in September) and return to the city in early August.

Yesterday I came home from good old HBH, drained, prepared for what I had chalked up to be "the greatest nap of all time."

I got an email.

The purse has been turned in! I swear to God, I don't know how I got this lucky. To be honest, at this point, it's just stuff--I've already replaced my credit cards and whatnot, but that "stuff" amounts to $300 worth of leather and countless ticket stubs that, you know, I want. And am psyched about having returned to me.

The online form on which I reported my lost item to Metro asked how much money I would guess was in the purse. I said $40, a rough estimate. When I called Metro after getting the email that it had been returned to figure out my options on getting the purse back, they told me I had $32 in there. The woman apologized to me, saying that someone must have taken some of the cash.

I laughed out loud.

July 07, 2009

Happy Birthday, America!

It feels like it has been so long since I updated, and I don't know why that is. It hasn't been a long time, and not a lot has happened.

I didn't write about my graduation party last time I wrote. In short, it was lovely. Jon was a big hit, especially with my grandmother, who is, shall we say, obsessed? That may be a little strong, but not much. She also made me a pecan pie, which made me want to graduate again. That woman's pies are just... God, incredible.

I digress. I am still awaiting response from the SA interview, though, like I mentioned, I don't expect much. Jon met a girl from another place to which I applied and she said that they were going to be making calls this week. So I wait, hopeful. It's an interesting job, and one that I am really excited about.

The 4th of July came and went (what happened to 2009? Already halfway over?!?). Julia and Suzie, two friends of mom's, got married in Boston and had a reception. I get so excited when I think about the fact that this country is beginning to support people like Julia and Suzie in their relationships. They are wonderful people, have been together 24 years (!), and are clearly still in love. How can you argue with that?

July 02, 2009

One Month In Either Direction

In about two weeks, I am going to DC to look at apartments and sign a lease. I'm getting more nervous and more excited every day. In almost exactly a month, I'll be moving into my very first apartment.

I am also a little less than a month out of school, which is also kind of crazy to me. I can't believe I am a college graduate. That is completely insane. Completely. It still feels like I'm just on summer break because I've just been staying at home and have begun working at Honeybaked again. Today was my first day, and it was deadly slow. I'm just grateful that Greg has the space to let me work, knowing I am leaving August 1.

I am hoping, in a month, to earn over half my rent payment. That is because DC is wildly expensive.

I had a job interview for a Hill Staff Assistant Position, which was a giant relief if only because I have been sending resumes for months and have heard nothing. I guess I was beginning to feel like I was wasting my time. I don't know, scoring an interview at this point feels like quite an achievement, even if I did mess it up pretty heartily. I think being on the phone instead of in person made me incredibly nervous. I'm usually really good at interviews, so it's hard not to beat myself up about it too much. Let's just say though that I don't expect to hear anything.

In other news, I hope Bales's parents are willing to cosign for our lease because neither one of us has a job that pays nearly enough for us to be able to sign it on our own (or even, you know, a job at all), and mom said she doesn't think Tim would even think about it. I hate the real world. Can I be 20 again? That was the perfect age.

June 17, 2009

Extraordinary Changes

Well, here I am, an alumna of The Ohio State University. I am very proud. And terrified, probably like most of my classmates. I graduated with just under what should have been Magna Cum Laude, but since OSU is the largest school in the country (holler!), they don't count your last quarter grades toward Latin Honors, and therefore, I graduate Magna. Eat it, 3.69!

I did not black out on senior crawl, which is quite an achievement (I feel like going to 24 bars and being even marginally reasonable is awesome. Go me). I went with Staters, and loved being an honorary S for the day. I really do miss those people. At first I thought it might be a little awkward, but they treated me like their own. Fabulous.

I am also excited about my graduation party. Even though the man that I credit with turning me into an English major can't come. Devastation. I think it'll be nice though, even without him. Sigh.
Plus after all the, as my mother calls them, "grown-ups" leave, apparently we're having a bonfire and booze. That'll be awesome. S'mores and BL. Holler.

I have also decided, after much back and forth, that I am moving to D.C. on August 1. It's a risk, and I realize that, and I've got the justified amount of fear in my stomach (I think Tim is already having heart failure), but at the end of the day, I'm young. I want to live there and work there long-term, and it's hard to get a job there if you don't live there. I am excited about the city, I've felt a connection to it for a long time (longer, even, than I've been able to say I'd been there), and unemployment is much lower there than pretty much anywhere else. I am qualified, well-connected, and a hard worker. I'll make it work. I have to: if I move there, I won't have any other choice. If I don't take the chance, I feel like I'll sit here in Burlington, scared out of my mind that I don't have a career, working my high school job, depressing myself about where my life is headed. I can do better than that. I will. I'm moving to our nation's capital.

May 21, 2009

So my sister is married. That's so weird. It was a lovely, lovely wedding, and everyone cried (even me, possibly especially me, though Kate was also a disaster. An adorable disaster, but all the same. Tears of joy! Holler!)

Even better, Thomas cried, which I have always said is very important in a wedding.

I am going to DC tonight to see Jon and also for some "informational interviews." I hope they go well, I'm getting so frustrated by my lack of employment. I feel like I'm grasping at air. Someday soon. Someday soon.

Plinky Prompt from May 12, 2009:
What do you have to have with you when you travel?
Specifically, share things the hotel isn't likely to have a replacement for.

I love little shampoo bottles that hotels have. I know that's not an answer to the question at all, but I thought it might be worth mentioning. I always take them. Always. The conditioner usually leaves much to be desired, because I'm really picky about my conditioner, but the shampoo always smells nice.

As for what I need to bring: I'm a terrible packer. I inherited this unfortunate trait from my mother. I pack really heavily, but I forget essentials. I always tell the story of the time my mother drove us to Savannah, GA (possibly my favorite place on earth). She liked to pack meals to save money and because she and Kate were vegetarian and didn't eat seafood (mom still is, Kate not so much). As she was unpacking, she realized she had brough 4 bottles of Italian salad dressing. Four. Bottles.

Then we were all, "let's go to the beach!" and mom went to change and comes out still in jeans and says, "I forgot to pack shorts!"

...Yeah, that's unfortunate, and I'm constantly doing the similar. Did I bring my toothbrush? Unlikely. Shoes? God, no. Never! But you can count on me to bring 100 pairs of underpants. And socks, even if I'm not even packing shoes that require them. You know, just in case?

Once again I dodged the question. Mr. Bear, maybe? I don't really travel with him often, but I do miss him when he's gone. Sigh. A lot of denim. I love my jeans. I lost a pair in the Atlanta Hilton over Spring Break. I'm still upset about it. I've "replaced" them, but my life will never be the same. Girls understand what it's like to have favorite jeans die. DIE. Ugh.

I'm still in class and have half an hour left. Another Plinky prompt?

May 9, 2009:
Do you prefer writing on paper or a keyboard?

Absolutely, 100%, on paper. I like my chicken scratches dominating the page, blue pen all over the place. I think it's far, far more personal. I feel a deep connection to the process of writing on paper. It makes me feel good, allows me to deal with a lot of emotional issues, I don't know. I just really like the personality. I think a lot of that is lost on a computer screen. Sorry, Blogger.

May 14, 2009

Technology Tells You What I'm Doing

I am in class and decided to be terrible. I already Twittered, why not lengthen the process?

I leave for Kate's wedding in about an hour and a half. I'm totally unready for the fact that my sister is going to be married. I'm excited, but also really very nervous. My shoes are very uncomfortable, and I'd like to not be the star of embarrasing family dinner conversations for years to come. You know, about how I fell on my face in front of the entire family. Also, my toast might be kind of awful, but I guess we shall see. I measure sucess based on how much my daddy cries.

I just looked up and realized I have no idea what's going on in this class and I'm pretty sure the Professor can tell. And if he can't, he will when he starts asking me questions about what I wrote for class last time.

May 10, 2009


Craziness ensues.

Kate just graduated, which is insane to me. Not as insane as the fact that she's getting MARRIED in SIX DAYS! I don't know, I guess because they were engaged for so long I just kind of felt like it was never happening. And yet here we are, six days away and my only full sister is getting married. Insanity. It's going to be a lovely wedding though, I'm really looking forward to it. I just bought her gift, so it's for real this time. It's a great gift. HA, KATE, HA.

I became an alumna member of DDD. It's so weird, tomorrow I'm not going to chapter but instead I'm going to the Columbus Alumnae meeting. I got really emotional during the alumna ceremony. There's a song we sing at the end of every chapter and ritual and I just kind of misted up a little. Then there's a song the chapter sings after each phase of initiation to commemorate the change in status, and during that I just starting sobbing. I mean, I'm a highly emotional person, so we all knew that was going to happen, but it was still a little embarrassing. People like to tease me about it, but I LOVE TRI DELTA.

It's interesting, Tri Delta doesn't technically consider members "fully initiated" until they become alumnae members. As in, collegiate members have only gone through two phases of the process, and Circle Degree is the third. I really like that about Tri Delta. I think it brings closure to the whole thing, and adds meaning to becoming an alumnae member.

I'm visiting Jon again Memorial Day weekend, which I am really looking forward to. Things have been going well, but I just kind of wish I knew where I was living in a month so that I could know if this even makes sense right now. He's a great guy and I like him a lot, but it can't work if we don't live, you know, less than 400 miles away from one another. So it would be nice to know that kind of thing.

Also during that trip I have informational interviews with a Congressional Office as well as with a DC PR firm. Interestingly, the woman from the PR Firm called while I was at work and left a voicemail explaining that her boss had forwarded her my resume. I had never heard of her, her boss, or her firm. As it turns out, dad's old boss forwarded my resume to the firm. Incredible. Hopefully the interview goes well. What does one wear to an informational interview?