December 02, 2008

"I'm wearing that shirt you like..."

I just got a second Blackberry and a second line.


Because back in July I had an experience that convinced me that any adult who would like to be perceived as responsible should carry separate work and personal devices. And, being a procrastinator, I just now got around to it. But the horror of my lesson still lingers.

Here's what happened:

My girlfriend Anne and I had plans to go out for a bite and a drink on a Friday night after work. We planned to meet at my houseand then head downtown.

I was home changing in my room, when she got to my place. She knocked on the door, I was upstairs. I didn't hear her, so she let herself in, having to pee. Not wanting to scare me, she sent me a text message from the bathroom to let me know she was in.

"I'm in your upstairs bathroom, FYI. Don't freak."

I got the message, and, picturing her sitting on the toilet texting me, giggled and
replied, telling her to come into my room when whe was done and mentioning the shirt I'd chosen to wear that night, knowing she'd get a kick out of the choice.

The shirt was a recent favorite addition to my wardrobe: a long, thin, dark blue silk number. It was perfect, except the last time Anne and I had gone out, 3 weeks prior, I had worn it and made an embarassing discovery. We had taken about a million photographs, and the following day when reviewing the pictures, we realized that the flash of the camera combined with the thin fabric of my favorite new top created a perfect storm - the unintentionally sheer-in-photos shirt. You could see my bra and a little cleavage in literally every photo. WHOOPS.

But I loved the shirt, and as I recalled its one downside, I chose a darker-colored bra less likely to make a guest-appearance in photos this time around, and made a mental note to ban flash-photography.

A few moments later Anne burst in, laughing.

"You're wearing the shirt!"

"Yep, couldn't resist," I said, dropping my cell phone into my purse before slinging it over my shoulder and pivoting in the mirror for one last check on our way out of my room. "I knew you'd get a kick out of it. By the way, who text messages on the toilet? Dork."

We headed downstairs, on our way out the door. On our way, I pulled my phone back out of my purse to check the time. But rather than being on the home screen, my phone was on the "sent text messages" screen, where I could see the last 5 or 6 texts I'd sent.

I must not have locked my keypad before dropping it into my bag, I thought, hoping I hadn't pocket-dialed anyone accidentally when my phone was in there squished against all the other hundred things I carried in my purse.

Hopeful, I looked more closely at the screen, at the list of my recently sent text messages. But something wasn't right.

The last two sent messages were not the ones I'd sent to Anne, though I hadn't sent any others after our little exchange when she was in the bathroom. Curiously, the texts I'd sent Anne were two down in the list - the 3rd and 4th most recently sent messages.

Looking closer, it all became clear.

"OOOOooooOOOOOOOH MYYYYY GOOOODDDDDDD," I wailed. April came running.

"What?! What?!"

I showed her my phone.

"Oh. OH! Shit!" she said.

I hadn't pocket-dialed anyone. Nope, it was worse. I had pocket-forwarded the last text message I sent Anne -- you know, the one about my shirt and where I was -- to my boss.

My male, married, BOSS. And worse, I hadn't done it once... I had sent it to him twice.

The messages were exact copies of the ones I'd sent Anne, and they read as follows:

"I'm in my bedroom. Meet me here when you're done. I'm wearing that see-through shirt you like."

Let me repeat that:


"Oh shit," Anne said again, as if that even came close to expressing the horror of the momen.

"Good, thanks. I am dead. I am a dead person," I said, not in the least dramatically. "What do I do? Oh FUCK, WHAT DO I DO???"

We silently stared at each other for a moment, me holding the phone like it was about to self-destruct, she just, well, gaping at me. I think we were waiting for what we thought would surely be the text response from our boss: "You're fired". Or worse: "On my way".

And then Anne, looking at me holding the phone away from my body like a grenade with a "doooo someeethingggg!!" expression, cracked. She burst into hysterical laughter, and I, seeing no other possible option, joined her.

It was the only thing that could be done. I had accidentally forwarded on an unintentionally seductive text message to my boss, with my butt, through my purse. Who in the hell do these things happen to besides me?

An hour or so later, when I hadn't recieved a response, I sent an explanatory email to said boss, explaining what had happened and falling on the sword for not having separate work and personal phones. He responded immediately (clearly he hadn't known what to say, a small relief in the big scheme of things) shrugging it off.

To this day, we haven't spoken about it. But, as I said, I now have separate work and personal devices. And I am locking my keypad for good measure.

November 30, 2008

Just did it.

I ran a half-marathon today, my first, and survived.

It was painful, but I loved it. And, in retrospect, I could have finished it a considerable amount faster, but as I ran past over-achievers who were, in the final leg, on the ground with cramps or strapped to gurneys and vomiting, I decided that for my first one, slow and steady was the way to go.

I am no worse for the wear - a little sore (okay, a lot sore, anyone offering rubbing services of any kind?), but overall in good spirits, and I have a cheesy medal, two "finisher" shirts and a crumpled race number to show for it.

Yay me. I feel so ahead of the game. Isn't this something I was supposed to, like, resolve to do in January or something? Can I get away with retroactively resolving to do it, like when you write down a list of the things you did today at the end of the day only so you can cross them all off? Or, if you're like me, you write a list of to-dos that always begins with "make list".

No? Hmmm. Alright, then, in 2009, the moon!

Thanksgiving stories to come, but in the meantime, enjoy your Sunday evening and I hope your holiday was as beautiful, and hysterical, as mine.

Be well, and try running once in a while, fatsos. Its awesome.

(Sorry, sorry, I didn't mean that. Runner's high? No? Hmmm.)

November 29, 2008

It'll grow back.

"I'll be right back," I said, spinning away from the cutting board, dropping the knife in the sink, and trying not to look down as I pinched my left thumb to my middle finger on the same hand. I was working overtime to keep my face serene, host-like, un-alarmed, as I sauntered out of the kitchen.

The moment I passed through the doorway, however, away from the chatter and company, I broke into a sprint, tearing up the stairs, crashing into one of the upstairs bathrooms and dropping to my knees in front of the sink. I threw open the cabinet doors and, using my right arm, swept the contents out onto the floor so I could better look through them.

You see, I was throwing a dinner party. A huge meal, five separate dishes, each highly complex (hello, idiot), and each requiring approximately the same time to prepare. Jim, typically my soux chef and partner, was busy entertaining the company, which included my mother and brother and some of our closest friends, and was thus out of commission to help much.

Oh, and I had just sliced the tip of my finger completely off.

Go ahead, re-read that. I know, it's hard to imagine.

But there I was, in the kitchen, slicing peeled parsnips (which were about to become a delicious addition to a winter root vegetable and apple hash) when I got a bit more than I bargained for. It's amazing how quickly it happened, just slice, slice, slice, sl-ouch! And I looked down and it was gone. No flap, no cut, just a chunk of my finger -- missing.

I knew, of course, that it would bleed, but I caught it with my thumb and applied pressure quickly enough that I hadn't seen any, yet. And I hadn't wanted to make a fuss of myself there in front of the crowd, so in my typical free-spirited control-freak fashion, I determined I'd handle it myself. You know, so as not to cause any alarm.

Anyway, there I was on the bathroom floor. No bandaids, bandages, etc. to be found. Nothing, in fact, remotely medical. I moved on to the next cabinet. More of the same. About seventy bottles of fingernail polish and lotions of every kind, but not a single ouchless strip.

On to the next bathroom I went, dumping a drawer into the sink. What the fuck were we thinking, not having any bandaids? My self-sufficient plan was starting to look hopeless. And my finger was starting to hurt as the adrenaline wore off. So I decided perhaps I could do a little improvising. First, I'd need to see what I was really dealing with. I'd barely seen the wound when I did it, and ever since had been pressing my thumb to it.

I sat back on my heels and removed my thumb.

And then came the blood. More blood than I have ever seen, and I have gotten myself into some pretty good messes. But this, this was bright red, running and running; it was a facuet of blood. In the few seconds I had my thumb off the wound, blood had run down my elbow, onto the ground in pools, all over my hand, on my knees.... it was everywhere.

This is where I started to panic.

I tore back into the first bathroom, desperate for anything i could fashion into a bandage. But before I had much luck, I started shaking and sweating. There was blood everywhere. In the sink, on the floor, across the counter... it wouldn't stop. And the shaking was getting worse.

Shock, I realized. I was going into shock.

Some dinner party.

Resigned to the drama that would have to follow if I called for help, which is what I realized I had to do if I didn't want to pass out (and, I thought, perhaps bleed to death? Can one even bleed to death through their finger? What about someone excessively stupid and clumsy?), I called, panic clear in my voice, for Jim.

He came running upstairs, shouted something to my mom, and moments later she and my brother materialized, he with a fistful of bandages. I dissolved into sobs, no longer able to keep up the facade as I watched blood continue to run from my finger into the sink and felt cold sweat trickling from my neck to my chest, down my back, down my face.

And then, a few fumbling moments later, my finger was wrapped so tight in bandaids it looked three times its size. Johnson and Johnson would have been so proud. There was still crusty blood everywhere, but my mom was busy on cleanup.

"Christ, babe," Jim said, shaking his head, hand on my hair as I sniffled in a heap on the floor. "How many times have I asked you to be careful with your knives? You make me so nervous the way you cut; I can't believe this is the first time this has happened. From now on, I cut. You point, I cut, chop, dice, fillet. No more knives for you."

"Oh, cmon," I said with a weak smile. "I'm just keeping things interesting."

"I'll say," he said. "You scared me there."

"Well you'll live," I struggled to get up, with his help, and head to the bedroom. "Besides, I'm the one missing a digit."

After changing, with Jim's help (let's be honest, he did it all; I was still a bit of a mess from my brush with shock) from my blood and sweat-soaked clothes into pajamas, I came back downstairs, wounded hand held above my heart (you know, to stop the bleeding), tear-streaked and a bit traumatized.

"My god," said my best friend. "Are you alright? I heard you cry, and when I heard that I figured there was something seriously wrong." I nodded, fighting relieved tears. She gestured to me, speaking to her boyfriend. "This one has a pain tolerance like I've never seen. She doesn't cry. Jesus, what, are we eating your finger for dinner?"

I sniffled and smiled, nodding. "Possibly. At least one of us is."

Dinner was finished (the beautiful buerre blanc sauce for the salmon, the hash, the bok choy in sesame oil, the king crab and three asian dipping sauces...) with the help of my mother, who came to the rescue with both hands and the patience to take orders from me as I paraded around the kitchen pointing at dishes.

"Butter there, slowly, whisk it... those need to be turned... oven on broil, just for a minute -- watch that..."

Of course, the meal turned out beatifully, and with the exception of the fact that I was missing a tiny bit of my body, had to eat with my hand in the air and had to stop drinking (didn't want to thin my already reluctant-to-clot blood), it couldn't have gone better.

And nobody found my fingertip, so that's a plus. :)

Mommy to the rescue. And though it was gruesome for the first two days(and you can imagine my hypochondriachal fantasies: staph infection, gangrene, more bleeding, loss of sensation, over-sensitized nerves, etc.), my little owie is much better now, thank you. In fact, looking at it now, I can't believe how horrible it looked that first day. Our bodies are amazing things; it's expected to make a full recovery in 2009.

And I'm expected to improve my knife skills. But you can make a safe bet that won't be the last aspirational meal I'll cook, with an audience, for fun. After all, what's life without a little danger?

October 17, 2008

This is awesome.

I dare you to do this and not feel Zen.

October 15, 2008

I'm not gone, just... resting.

This is the longest I've gone without writing anything -- ANYthing -- ever. In my whole life. (Well, after I learned how to write, anyway). (And not work-related, I mean.)

I have many theories on why this is.

Love makes one less creatively inspired? I'm focused on building my career? (Oh yeah, I quit my last job, gave a middle finger to my stock options, and took a new, cooler one in a company that will weather economic turmoil AND pays me twice as much!!!) Got a puppy, puppy is to writing as salt is to slugs? Started reading the Twilight series against my better judgement and am now too busy being in love with a 100+ year old vampire? Signed up for a half-marathon and am now officially very sore and clearly insane? Planning a beer pong tournament and so am too exhausted (read: drunk with practicing) to document my escapades?

Aaah, while all these things are at least somewhat true, I can't say it was a conscious decision. I just accidentally took a break. But many interesting developments have, uh, developed. And I intend, as always, to overshare. Soon. In the meantime, some ear candy:

An old favorite mix I found on Muxtape, before the labels shut it down and forced a reinvention (which is pending...

Fiona Apple — Across The Universe
Emily Haines & the Soft Skeleton — Doctor Blind
Earlimart — First Instant Last Report
This Is Ivy League — The Richest Kids
These United States — First Sight
Band a Part — Sounvenir de l'Avenir
장필순 — Good-Bye
Flight Of The Conchords — Leggy Blonde (Featuring Rhys Darby)

I'm coming back, promise. :)

July 07, 2008

Define "spare".

"What are the odds?"

Jim shook his head in exasperation.

We were standing in the parking lot of a grocery store staring into the open back of my hatchback. Pennies, nickles, dimes and quarters -- hundreds, maybe thousands of them -- were scattered in the car, wedged in cracks and crevices, and spilling out of the back into the parking lot, where they clattered and rolled around, making us quite a spectacle.

My car was like a treasure chest with wheels. Only our treasure was escaping.

"Well," I began sarcastically, "Do you mean what are the odds the giant ziplock bag of change would rip and spill while we were en route to have it turned into bills, or what are the odds that an adult male would have such an impressive coin collection?"

I got on my hands and knees in the parking lot and started recovering our change. Jim took care of the thousand and one coins in the car. After a good twenty minutes, we were satisfied that we had gotten every last one -- but it took some effort, to be sure.

**It is important to note that we were in Bellevue, an area outside Seattle that is often accused of being home to a host of Stepford wives and Ferarris -- where the most eggregious crime of the day usually has something to do with the sandwich Nazi at the gourmet sandwich shop screwing up your order. That actually made us, scrambling around on all fours after pennies, that much funnier, but it's also important to the story in a moment.**

As we walked towards the grocery store to the CoinStar machine inside, Jim holding a giant clear bag absolutely full of loose change, we chuckled about how funny we must have looked crawling around the parking lot like high school kids after a few pennies. But truth be told, Jim even looked silly holding it -- the bag was GIANT and clear, and he was holding it up like a kid holds a goldfish they won at the fair -- in a proud fist in front of them.

And then, out of nowhere, appeared the only transient I have ever seen in Bellevue. And he was walking straight towards us. Or, rather, straight towards the tall man with the giant bag of change next to me.

"Uh oh, he's coming our way," I said under my breath, like the bum was a pirate and was coming to commandeer our bag of gold.

Jim sort of nervously coughed and we continued to walk, not making eye contact, hoping the bum would just sort of pass us by. But of course, no dice.

"Hey mister, you got any spare change?" The bum was eyeing the bag. The jig was up. It was all over.

I looked over at Jim, who continued walking and lamely gestured at first the bag, and then the bum, in this semi-sympathetic, totally awkward sort of way, before stammering, with a surprised, uncomfortable look on his face:

" man. This is, uh......... my money."

And he just continued to walk with his giant bag of change, into the store. I, in shock that the whole scene had actually taken place, quietly followed him.

"Wow," I said when I finally recovered, bursting into hysterical laughter. "What are the odds of THAT?"

June 23, 2008

File this one under "mildly offensive (but nonetheless true) things my boyfriend says"

This morning:

"Hon, if you were to run for public office, your platform would be 'chaos'."

June 18, 2008

Note to self

1. The mailman comes every day.
2. There is a finite amount of space in a mail box.

Therefore, if you do not pick up the mail for more than 3 weeks, you are likely to run out of mailbox space, making it difficult for the mailman to put more junk mail into the now-full mailbox.

In that case, it is likely he will leave you a nasty note for making his job harder, steal all your mail, and stuff it somewhere else, like possibly the post office, where you'll have to go pick it up.

On an unrelated note, post office lines are long.

June 16, 2008

We're moving!

That's right, Legwarmers is moving! Nothing is going to change besides the name and the URL, which is to say I'll continue telling bad pee-pee jokes and sharing every mortifying and grisly detail of my life there, so you can look forward to that.

But I thought it was time for a little refresher. Legwarmers has run its course. I, your humble contributor, am evolving, and therefore so is Legwarmers.

We're stepping out, in heels.

About the name: The "...backwards, and in high heels" quote above is one I've always loved -- it sort of captures, cheekily, my general perspective. It has been incorrectly attributed to a former Texas politician and to Ginger Rogers herself, but it was, in ironic fact, first written by a male comic strip writer -- Bob Thaves -- in a comic strip aptly titled "Frank and Earnest" in 1982, when I was barely a year old. The original strip is below.

I'm not exactly sure when this move is going to finally commence, as I am attempting to transfer all Legwarmers content to the new URL while also maintaining the integrity (heh. "integrity".) of this site, but in the meantime, you can enjoy a new look and a new name.

I'll post a note with the new URL when we make the official leap.

June 15, 2008



It is 1:30 in the aftrnoon on a gorgeous Sunday in the greater Seattle area. I should be outside soaking up the sun, or barbequeing, or jogging, or driving with my windows down and occasionally yelling "HEY, THAT'S MY BIKE!!!" out the window at small groups of alarmed adolescents cruising their huffies down the sidewalk.

But instead I'm sitting here in a pair of well-loved boxers and a hoodie, with whacked-out hair, eating pizza (vegetarian, extra sauce and pineapple, easy on the cheese), making a feeble attempt to hydrate (Diet Pepsi count?) while flipping through the photo evidence of the debauchery that was last night.

In short, I am hung over. Thanks to one of the best bachelorette parties possibly of all time.

There was nothing particularly spectacular from the outside about this party, really. We had the huge limo, of course, and the gazillion bottles of champagne. And the dresses. And the bride had the obnoxious flashing gag veil with little light-up penises all over it.

But what we had that most bachelorette parties don't was a desire to CRUSH every bar we entered. We wanted to drink everything, talk to everyone, and generally monopolize every venue exclusively for our benefit, other patrons be damned.

Highlights include:

1. The maid of honor taking swigs off a Souza tequila bottle (yes, that is essentially the worst tequila made -- let's be clear on the fact that this maid of honor is not messing around)on the way to the restaraunt and booty dancing her way up and down the limo -- on the freeway.

2. Ordering a round of Scooby Snack shots for the girls, taking them, then deciding they were too "fattening" and asking the bartender to try them with red bull instead of half and half. The result? Pure heaven, an addition to the shot menu, and my first drink named after me: the Lizzie Snack. (Let me just say that these things were a HUGE hit, and are fairly advanced for a "girly" shot. The combination of booze, sugar and caffeine in these puppies result in a very happy buzz -- and could be fatal if overdone.)

3. Taking the limo back from the piano bar to "downtown" Snohomish (think: cow town). No, that's the highlight. A limo in Snohomish. I think it's actually the first time that's ever happened.

4. Hitting three more bars, two of which had live bands and both of which I managed to convince to let the bride to be up on stage to sing a song. I accomplished this using my finely-tuned powers of persuasion (eyelash batting, a well-delivered joke, a little sweet talk and a deftly slipped $20). The songs? Joan Jett's "I Love Rock and Roll" and "Sweet Caroline". The entire patronage of both places ended up joining in by the end of the songs -- I'm surprised we didn't have a roof or two collapse. I should have been a hype-man when I grew up. I'm that good.

5. Being danced with and then gently hit on by a very, very tall man who was in town as best man in a wedding. I, of course, politely declined his advances and made my way back to the table. A few minutes later, in front of the whole table of my girls, one of his buddies came up to me and said something like: "Hey baby, did you know he plays for the L.A. Clippers? He makes a ton of money and he thinks you're beautiful. I mean, he makes a TON of money."

Taken aback, I dismissed him. He continued to push, on and on about this "money", which I gathered was supposed to impress me. I continued to wave him off. Finally, as he was not getting it, I unleashed a torrent of shit on the pathetic little man. Something to the effect of "Listen, you arrogant little prick, I don't know what you're trying to pull here, but I make my own money. I strongly recommend that you go back to wherever hole you came from and work on your little sidekick schtick. If that's the best you can do for your buddy over there, I think he needs to find a new wingman. Oh, and by the way, you're short and you smell like cheese."

It was a memorable night to say the least. Now it's back to the horizontal position for me. Happy weekend!

June 11, 2008

I don't believe I've met you...

"Jeeeez! Look at all this little personalized Mariners' paraphernalia," I marveled.

Jim and I were at a very swanky party thrown by the president of the Mariners. You know, the terrible baseball team based in Seattle? It was held at SafeCo field (where aforementioned baseball team loses most of its games) for two friends who are getting married this summer. The groom grew up with the President of the Mariners' kid, and therefore el Presidente’s family decided to host an over the top party at the President's suite at the ballpark.

So here we are at this swanky party with unlimited food and booze, where we knew nobody except the bride and groom... and there is customized paraphernalia everywhere, which is clearly impressing me.

Think: Little baseball player cookies with little frosting jerseys with the bride and groom’s name on them, real Mariner’s jerseys with the bride and groom’s name on them, hats, water bottles… just swag up the kazoo.

And I, trying to make friends as I make my way across the suite to the restroom, am exclaiming to strangers in the room, enthusiastically, about how cool all this stuff was.

“Oh look at those cookies…” I cooed. “They’re so cute!” This elicited murmers of agreement from a stranger or two, who I then introduced myself to and made nice with before moving on to the next weird personalized memento.

So picture me doing this while making my way across the room, proudly leaving a bunch of not-strangers-anymore in my enthusiastic wake. I was quite pleased with my impact, and as I sauntered nearly out of the room, I passed one last item: A very oversized leather mitt with a wedding band on its ring finger, in the center of which was a softball-sized baseball with the bride and groom’s name embroidered on it.

“Oh my gosh, would you look at that??” I shrieked in my girlish delight. “It has their names stitched right into the ball!”

To punctuate this exclamation as new strangers turned towards me to respond (and because I have pretty terrible vision and couldn’t see the items well enough), I reached for the ball. I planned to pick it up, turn it over, and look at it up close and personal, as I had with the other items, while making friends.

Except the ball wouldn’t lift.

It was either the world’s heaviest softball-sized baseball, or it was stuck to the mitt.

I tugged at it again with my hand. Nothing. Just as I was about to engage my other hand for a good old fashioned two-handed pull, it hit me.

It. Was. A. Cake. (And for the record, it looked a helluva lot more realistic than this picture of a similar cake. It looked honest to God real.)

A fondant-covered, larger-than-life, baseball mit with baseball in it CAKE.

And I had my grubby little strange hand all over the crowning jewel, huffing and puffing and jerking at it like an I was an over-served middle-aged man and it was a stripper with negligible moral code.

“Oh my gosh, it’s a cake! It’s a cake! I didn’t know it was a cake!”

Yep, that's what I said. I know, I know. Brilliant.

My voice was high pitched. My face was bright red. I clutched my “bad” hand with my “good” hand and glared at it like it was some sort of naughty pet that had temporarily escaped my control. And then I looked around.

Some people off to my left were giggling and nodding knowingly. They had caught me. And they were not impressed. But no matter – I was not going to my left, I was going to my right. To the bathroom. Hell, to FREEDOM. To a place to hide forever and never come out. Because I had touched, aggressively, the cake.

I spun around to my right, just feet from the door, just seconds from the bathroom and sweet escape, and bumped directly into – with my “bad” hand – wait for it...

The president of the Mariners' wife. You know, the HOSTESS of the EFFING SWANKY PARTY at which I knew nobody (now including Jim, who saw the debacle and wisely denied having any idea who I was).



Intelligently, I said (still holding up my hand:

“I didn’t know it was a cake! It’s… uh… amazing!!!”

She looked at me – this woman who had certainly come up with the idea for the cake, absolutely ordered it and without a doubt paid ridiculous sums of money for it – with a look of such disdain I can’t even describe it. It was like Cruella DeVille had suddenly appeared before me, and I’d accidentally vomited on her coat holding a sign that said "SAVE THE PUPPIES".

And then she spoke in a slow, disapproving drawl the words that will forever be burned into my mortified memory of this moment while looking me up and down and shaking her head:

“I don’t believe I’ve met you.”


I no longer watch the food network's cake show -- the one where cakes are made to look like kittens or buildings or small children or golf equipment.

Why? Because fuck them, that's why. Making food look like something else is just MEAN.

June 03, 2008

I do. Times seven. Minus hundreds of dollars.

This summer I have seven weddings to attend. That’s right… SEVEN weddings in less than 4 months. This does not count bachelorette parties, bridal showers and other wedding-themed events. This means three things:

1. The countdown to me feeling like an old maid has begun.

To be clear, I do not currently feel like an old maid. I am quite happy not to be married at this particular moment, and am reveling instead in the joys of living in sin.

But ask me about this topic sometime in the not-so-distant future, and I sadly suspect I will have joined ranks with the droves of late-twenties women who are suddenly struck by an insatiable desire to throw a big party and wear a white dress and whatnot. I’d like to say this will never happen because I’m not influenced by things like peer pressure and social expectation, but the fact is I’m not, contrary to popular belief, completely impervious to these pressures. Evidence lies in the fact that I have just planted my first garden (and things are growing!!!), I’m meal-planning and doing my boyfriend’s laundry regularly, and I spend about 4 hours online weekly shopping for either puppies or houses – or both.

Which is so funny, considering that the Liz of a few years ago would have been completely aghast at these newfound preoccupations, preferring instead to picture herself as an unmarried bespectacled 40-something in a flat somewhere in New York with her dogs and cats and fantastic wardrobe and nightlife and single (preferably gay) male friends and an awesomely stimulating and high-powered job.

It could be that the right lovely tall smart sweet cooking cleaning fishing complementing complementary capable man has appeared in my life. (Or maybe it’s just cuz all my friends are doing it.) :)

2. I will be spending a grand total of, well, my entire savings account attending and participating in these wedding festivities.

I actually calculated, and assuming I spend X on each gift and X on each bridal shower and X on each bachelorette party (which, by the way, are RIDICULOUSLY EXPENSIVE these days, even without strippers!) I’ll be looking at a four-month expense of something like what it costs to attend a large state university for a semester when you’re not good at sports OR academics and are not either a veteran or a native American. Which is to say a lot.

3. I will have even more opportunities than usual to embarrass myself.

Yes, there is a story here. And yes, I will tell it. In my next post.

Until then, be good. I’m off to Vegas this Thursday through Sunday, where the weather will be 100 degrees and I will be happy as a well-fed, well-watered, baked clam.

Baked as in tan, not high. Just to be clear.

Talk soon!

May 23, 2008

Happy Innuendo Day!

Well, folks, it's my favorite time of year again, so to speak. That's right, the day when it's encouraged to say "is that a gun in your pocket, or...", as it were. The day when "that's what she said" reigns, and "not that there's anything wrong with that..." is king -- or at least that's implied.

It's a hard thing to stay on top of, and requires cunning linguistics and repetitious practice before you can fully grasp the thrust of it. (Wink wink, nudge nudge.)

I think you know what I'm talking about...

Happy Innuendo Day, all.

May 08, 2008

Man-Shave, anyone?

"You know what I think we should get your brother for graduation?"

My mom was driving, I was sitting in the passenger seat, fighting sleep, which was threatening to take me down like a rogue rebel force as we drove the 5 hours from our hometown to Washington State University, where my brother would be graduating the next day.

I shook off the dazed look and attempted to act like I'd processed the question.


"An old fashioned lather and shave," she said, all excited-like. "Except I didn't think about that until right this minute and graduation is tomorrow and so there's no way we can do it now."

My adorable mother is trapped in the stone age. She thought that because she'd not arrived more than a day in advance that there was no way she could now, in the car, figure out how/where she could send my brother in his college town for a fresh shave the morning of graduation. It never occurred to her that phones now have web access or that 411 might be a good place to start... instead, she was thinking the most efficient way to do this would have been to arrive in town, ask the locals, and go door to door until she found someone who a) provided the service and b) had a slot open the saturday of graduation for my brother.

She just -- JUST -- learned how to text message, in fact, and though she knows how to do it, she never does for two reasons:

1) she says it's ungodly expensive, and cents (CENTS!) per text, and
2) she can't figure out how to use the "shift" function on her phone, so all her messages are a strange combination of letters and numbers only sometime resembling actual English

Anyway, the problem: I was sleepy and needed a job in the car and my mother needed to find a barber shop.

Well, Liz to the rescue.

"No sweat," I said, pulling my shiny blackberry out of my pocket with a proud flourish. "I can take care of that for you in no time, flat!"

"Suuurrrree," she said, eyeing the phone warily. "We'll see."

I shrugged and started typing. Google wasn't turning up great results, but at least I got a list of phone numbers I could call in the Pullman, WA. area. Proud of my little progress and eager to show my mother that technology was, in fact, the obvious answer to this problem, I held up the phone, showing her the screen (nevermind that we were hurtling down the freeway at 80 miles an hour).

"There! See? A whole bunch of places we can call!"

I clicked the first link, calling a barbershop with a very masculine name. Surely, I thought, these folks would be the place a guy would go to get a...


shit, what are they called?

As the phone was ringing, my mind was racing.

A straight shave?
A lather shave?
An old-fashioned shave?

My mind was blank. Though I could picture the service in my mind: man sitting in barber's chair, a hot towel on his face, then lather on his beard, then a straight-razor shave, I couldn't figure out what in the world that experience was technically called.

And then a man answered.

"Phil's Barber shop, this is Phil, how can I help you?"
"Oh! Hi!" I was far too enthusiastic in an attempt to buy me some time and hide how flustered I was.
"Hi," Phil said patiently. "What can I do for you?"
"Umm," I stammered, "I...I..." spit it out already! what were they called again? "I was wondering if you did those... uh... fluffy--er, I mean, soapy... uh... MANSHAVES!?"

There was a pause, then the sound like ol' Phil pulled the phone away from his ear and covered up the reciever, and then a snort.

"ManShaves?" Phil was sweetly trying to contain a laugh.

"Yeah... uh, you know..." It was over. I realized I'd just said "man shave" and completely lost it, bursting out in hysterical laughter.

"Fluffy?!!" he gasped.
"MANSHAVES??" I screeched.

Phil did the same. For two minutes at least -- a long and intimate time to be laughing on the phone with a dude you don't at all know -- Phil and I snorted, howled and tried to contain the waves of hysterical laughter that kept rolling back and forth between us.

When I finally composed myself and he courteously did the same, I of course apologized.

"Sorry, I didn't know what they were called," I said. "I cannot believe I just said 'man-shave'. How embarassing."

"No, it's cool," said Phil. "It's just that we're an equal-opportunity shaver. We prefer to call them 'PersonShaves'."

"Oh, of course," I said. "My mistake!"

Cue laughter again.

God bless goofy strangers.

And what the eff is wrong with me?

March 24, 2008

Y? Because we like you!

Well, step 1 seems to have worked. After a car detailing and some reorganizing, I seem to be free of Mickey, the gum-chewing mouse. This is a relief, as is the fact that it does not appear I will need to go buying mouse traps and digging little mousey graves anytime soon. Hurrah!

The thing is that I think that in dealing with this situation, I may have developed yet another neurosis: I think I'm now either obsessed with or terrified of rodents.

The other day while at the mall, I stood on a skybridge talking on the phone to my mother when I saw a mouse scurry across the street below, from the parking garage (where I had just come from) to the mall building (where I was going).

Not only did I completely blank out on what we were talking about, I just sort of froze there momentarily, considering whether I really needed to go into the mall, and whether it was completely insane to think maybe that mouse came from my car, and whether there was any potential that mouse was going to make it into the mall (and therefore whether, again, I really needed to go in).

I think I recovered well, but to be honest, I'm not sure. I think my mom just kept talking the whole time I was panicking.

Then, last night, I dreamt that my house was infested with rats. But not just any rats, the kind that are really smart and evade you at every turn while still periodically popping their ugly little faces out of strange places in your home and scaring the bejeezus out of you. Yeah, not a sweet dream at all.

Like I need something else to be fixated on! On the upside, this could very well result in some entertaining stories for you sadistic minds out there who are entertained by my every misadventure. So stay tuned for that.

March 17, 2008

This is my 250th post, and there is a mouse living in my car.

Let me repeat: THERE IS A MOUSE. LIVING. IN MY CAR. Is that both horrifying and disgusting? Yep, that’s what I was afraid of.

There is a mouse living in my car. And this dirty, disgusting little imposing mouse has a squeaky clean mouth (sorry for the pun).

I know both these things because this morning, when Jim and I were commuting to work, I reached into a little coin tray where I keep change and gum in my car for a stick of delicious Orbitz gum, and when I pulled out a stick, it had teeny tiny little bites taken out of it.

A goddamn MOUSE broke into my goddamn CAR and ate my goddamn ORBITZ. For the record, this did not give me a good clean feeling no matter what, as advertised.

“Oh…my…god…” I held one of the evidential sticks out to Jim, while not at all maintaining the 10 and 2 position with my hands on the wheel and only partially paying attention to the road.

“Looks like you have a mouse,” he said with utter disgust. “Eeew.” (Yes, Jim said “eew”. Priceless.)

“I do not have a mouse! There just IS a mouse! How did he even get IN here?”

I was immediately indignant. Nevermind that I have gone though periods where I could have been mistaken for living in my car, having someone bear witness to the fact that there was/is/had been a mouse living in there was a thousand times worse. Because mice are, well, icky. And I have it on good authority that mice only like really disgusting, dirty places. So that meant, in my head, that “my” mouse said something not at all flattering about me and my ability to maintain a car.

Just after I processed that thought, shaking my head and muttering, the next terrible one hit me:

“Oh shit! Do you think he’s still in here?!”

(As you can imagine, I was paying even less attention to my free right turn and the 5 key rules for safely operating a vehicle while processing this thought than I was before, because I was at that moment increasingly certain that there was a mouse – no, MANY mice, maybe hundreds – scurrying around under my seat, next to my feet, across my headrest, along the backseat. I was utterly convinced that they were everywhere.)

I couldn’t get us parked and out of the car fast enough. I scrambled to the elevator, imagining a torrent of rodents racing frantically behind me, worked to ditch the heebie jeebies and formulated my Rodent War battle plan:

1. Get car detailed, by a professional. Do not opt for the cheapie where they just vaccum your carpet, bite the bullet and request the full-on shampoo treatment, complete with bonus search for dead, dying or (eeew eeew eeew) alive rodents.

2. Lay a food booby-trap shortly after detail mission is complete.

2.a. At first sign of teethmarks, purchase 6 mousetraps – the kind that catch and squish the mice. (NOTE: Do not poison, as you have heard too many stories about people poisoning car-mice and then suffering through dead-mouse scent for weeks when they’re unable to find the body).

2.b. Have a nice strong drink. Consider setting up a hidden night-vision motion-detection camera with which to catch the mice in the act and determine their mode of entry.

2.c. Have another drink and reconsider motion-camera tactic, as it sounds like a lot of work.

3. Rely on the traps to catch and squish the mice.

3.a. Throw bodies away as needed, screeching "eeeeeEEEEEEWWWWWWWW!" the whole way to the garbage can.

4. Repeat as necessary until they wave the white flag or someone gives me a better idea.

5. Go shopping.

I do anticipate some problems. For one, I apparently live in the rodent capital of the universe. Mice have been a problem for some of my neighbors and even the previous renters of the house I currently live in (which, for the record, is VERY CLEAN AT ALL TIMES) and is so far free of mouse-sightings.

Secondly, mice breed like rabbits. Or cockroaches. Or something. I think they can have like a hundred babies in 10 minutes flat. Which means I may have to dip into the 401K to afford all the mousetraps this war may require.

Third, the irony: I have a cat, but she has no claws and lives indoors and poops in a little sandbox and owns a pink bedazzled shirt with the word "bitch" on it.

Finally, I don’t like killing things.

This is perhaps my biggest weakness as a person. It’s so GIRLY it’s unforgivable. I don’t even kill spiders – I make my cat do that (you don’t need claws to kill spiders). Hell, I go fishing and am happy to snag the fish and reel them up, but you will never get me to be the person with the bat who whacks that poor fish on the head to kill it. Nope, I’d rather put it in the cooler and know it’s slowly, painfully dying than just end it myself. I used to pluck and clean like 50 chickens every spring with my family growing up and I loved looking at all the guts, but I could NEVER handle that axe. So IF I get to step 2 and have to buy the horrible old fashioned mousetraps and I actually catch a mouse and find it in the trap the next day, squished and dead or worse—squished and not yet dead, I’m in trouble. Because there is NO WAY I’ll be able to a) open the door to the car in order to b) pick up and dispose of that trap.

Which may mean I’ll have to just give up and turn the car over to the mice and start jogging to work.

Wish me luck. And please, if you have any advice, I’m all ears. But not Mickey ears, because he’s the Enemy.

February 21, 2008

Five blades or die.

I apologize for being so damn lazy lately, it's just that I've been altogether uninspired, super busy at work, and totally lacking creative juices (unless you consider a return to crock-pot cooking creative...). And it's not that I'm even that short on interesting stuff happening in my life. I mean, I've had a roommate go completely off her pogo stick, I've gone to (and drank black russians after) a funeral with my totally insane family, and my neighbor caught me watching TV while painting my nails, fully naked. These are all good stories, or at least moderately entertaining, but I've just got zero capacity to tell them at the moment.

So sit tight. But in the meantime, and in the interest of keeping you even somewhat entertained, I encourage you to read my favorite Onion post of all time: click here.

It's old, but every time I go back to it I find myself hysterical.

I mean, five blades? Five blades? C'mon. That's just crazy.

February 08, 2008

I've done a lot of stupid things while drunk...

Including but not limited to:

- initiating a giant cake fight in a house that wasn't mine, with cake that wasn't mine
- missing the cup and instead pouring a drink into a friend's lap
- getting lost on a beach
- sending mass-texts to everyone I know and then not remembering the next day
- drunk-dialing (shocker, I know)
- drunk-MySpacing (worse, I assure you)
- bar-fighting (that's a really good story, actually)
- locking myself out of my house
- ordering $100 bottles of wine when what I really needed was gatorade and a cheeseburger
- buying a shirt of a large black man's back
- dancing with a transient
- etc.

...but I've never threatened to blow up a city with a TV remote.

And that's something.

Happy Friday!

February 06, 2008

Can I be your pet?

Click here for the article this post relates to.

I think I'm a pretty open minded individual, but I gotta admit, this makes me a little uncomfortable. Either this girl is completely diabolical and about as lazy as a couch, having worked out a way to, like, never have to do anything of any substance again, or she's disturbed.

I mean, it doesn't sound so bad if you are the laziest individual on earth - she gets to basically loll around all day, eating and making waste and sleeping and whatever in her house. She doesn't have to hold a job or do chores or cook or run errands... she's a completely unproductive member of a household, just like a cat.

But the tradeoff is she can't leave the house without her significant other, and if she does leave the house with him, she has to wear a collar and a leash.


First, no thanks.
Second, how long can this possibly last? I mean, at some point, isn't the gimmick going to be over and isn't this guy going to want a significant other he can take to an "off-leash" company Christmas party? And isn't she at some point gonna be like "Hey, dude, I don't like meatloaf. I'm making a peanut-butter and jelly sandwich, and that's that!"?

January 24, 2008

i can has cheezburger?

I found this site today on the random recommendation of a business associate and within moments of discovering it, it was up on the top bar of my browser as a bookmarked and much-loved site.

That position is reserved for very few sites, as space there is limited (I have probably 100 total bookmarks in my list, but only about 10-12 can fit as icons in the top bar of my browser). Among the best are, a couple industry blogs I monitor closely, Techcrunch, a link to my 401k planning site, 2 internal company links, a stock photo site for my creative work, and, now, i can has cheezburger.

I don't know what it is, the anthropromorphizing of animals just gets me every time. Esepcially when they are animals who pronounce things funny, have a poor grasp of the english language, and are so completely self-obsessed as these ones.

And it's like a fun little treat -- you can check it 5 times a day and usually there's a new post every time! I might trade in my chocolate fix for cheezburger.

(by the way, the above image is the one I created of Akeelah -- watch for it to appear on the site!)

January 02, 2008

resolutions? maybe next year...

I always make a good effort at resolutions at the beginning of a new year. There is something about them that appeals to me, to my idealism. I like the thought of looking at your life, promising to make changes, and having a timeline in which to see those changes take place (a year, to be precise).

But the follow through is where I find myself occasionally lacking. Not always -- I often make great headway on a number of my resolutions -- but generally speaking, resolving has actually turned out to be more of a "thinking out loud about how I would like to be if I had any will power whatsoever, then forgetting about it, renting a movie, and eating two bags of microwave popcorn in one sitting."

So much for idealism.

But it's worked out so far; 2007 was one for the books:

I removed myself, once and for all, from a bad relationship. I nurtured new relationships and some old ones, too. I saw my mother through a nasty divorce. I lost, then regained my sense of family. I fell in love -- the real kind. I skydived. I challenged myself. I hired employees (yes, this girl is someone's boss. Isn't that scary?).

I went on a road trip. I went fishing. I had surgery. I recovered. I surprised myself. I accidentally ate pot cookies (that's a whole 'nother story).

I got a raise, reconnected with old friends, and made new ones.

I figured out what I stand for, I think.

I got more patient, less confrontational, and stopped yelling so much.

I learned how to negotiate.

I folded my clothes after they were done drying much more frequently. I did not run out of gas one time.

I performed random acts of kindness. I helped friends in need. I got more comfortable being a friend in need, too.

And I realized for the umpteenth time that nothing's easy, and I know even less than I thought I did, and that sometimes people aren't who they say they are, but sometimes they are.

Oh, and I discovered that one should not drive around with expired tabs, that alternators are easily replaced by car-savvy friends, and that weiner dogs and small cats have the same size poo.

And that no matter what, one should always say yes to topless pools in Vegas and no to eating chips in the shower.

Maybe I don't need resolutions after all.