Saturday, June 28, 2008

I Like 'Em Dark, Bitter, and Rich

I can't imagine life without coffee.

I love a steamy, french-pressed pot on lazy mornings. I love the smell of coffee shops. I love latt├ęs piled high with pillowy foam. I love iced coffee on hot summer afternoons. I love it black. I love it with cream and sugar. I even love it from truck stops on road trips.

Ideally, however, it is Sumatran or Guatemalan in origin, freshly ground, made with filtered water and then pressed down in the Bodum. One teaspoon of cream and I'm fueled for an entire dark and lazy Saturday morning of looking at vintage tablecloths on ebay. How cool is this one?

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Political Commentator Gossip

Keith Olbermann is the constant background noise at our house. If Stella and I had our way, it'd be more like Spongebob Squarepants and whatever is on Bravo....but no....it's all MSNBC all the time.*

So it was with mild interest in that "my significant other is really into this so I guess that means I'm sorta into it too" kind of way that I read the piece on Keith Olbermann in last week's New Yorker. It was pretty much blahblahmeteoricrisetothetopandsubsequentleftistpoliticalidealogyonparadeblahblah until I came to the tiny buried nugget that Olbermann briefly dated Laura Ingraham ten years ago. WTF?! I mean I know people grow apart.....but that's really apart. Crazy, huh?







*At least in the bedroom. Awwww yeah.

Cheesy, But I Can't Help It

Happy Anniversary, D.! 18 months and still going strong. Or...at least still going, right? I love you so much I have to tell the whole internet. I won't always come straight home to fall asleep on the couch, I promise.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

So It Goes...

We're gearing up for our busiest month of the year here at work. July is like jumping on a train with no brakes. Just hold on tight!

Happy Birthday to Kelly/Afro Moon! Let's make 33 a good year, shall we?

Happy Birthday to Jessica! Your birthday dinner was one of the best in recent memory! When can we do it again??

Happy Birthday to Erin who I used to share an office (and so much more) with and miss every day.

I think it just sucks that George Carlin has died. I've been reading/listening to him since I was an impressionable youth. I recognized him early on as a truth teller. There don't seem to be as many truth tellers around anymore, masquerading as "comics." I think Dave Chappelle is one of the few I can name off the top of my head. If you have the chance, you must watch the Iconoclasts episode with him and Maya Angelou. They discuss race, history, and personal challenges in a way that is quite touching.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Grasping At Product Development Straws

Not too much surprises me anymore, but this new product gave me pause. Fruit-infused beer? GOOD LORD, WHY?? Call me narrow-minded with an unsophisticated palate but I can't see how raspberry pomegranate Michelob could possibly taste good. It reminds me too much of Boone's Farm (mmmm, Strawberry Hill....tastes like high school....). Now, I'm all for squeezing fresh lime into a cold beer....so why add "lime flavoring?"

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Sickening...

This ties in with what I wrote about earlier. This pin is being sold at the Texas Republican Convention. As featured in the Dallas Morning News blog. At least we know the Good Ol' Boys are not good and they're getting older....but my stomach still turns when I hear stuff like this.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Not The Fun Kind of Getting Busy

I feel guilty that I have no time to create well-written and organized posts. You deserve better, though. My sister complained that all she ever hears from me is how busy I am. I didn't really know how to respond. Do I not call her, then, if that's all I really have to say? Do I continue to check in with reports of insanity? Is everyone getting sick of this broken record? I started this dumbass blog because I thought I had things to say. I still do. Eventually they'll be crafted into essays instead of bullet points. Maybe.

Perhaps this will give y'all an idea of my flooded mind:
  • The summer term began two weeks ago at work. During that time we had another trip to the ER and an emergency gall bladder surgery for a new student, another student's father passed away, our regular overnight trip to Little Rock, plus all the other usual madness.
  • Stella left for a week's trip with a friend to New Mexico. I'm sad that I can't take a trip with her at this point, but I'm excited that she's seeing some of the most beautiful places in the Southwest.
  • Undiagnosed, probably stress-induced issues with my innards.
  • Family drama.
  • Talking with my students about subtle and embedded racism in my culture. The fact that the question "Is America ready for a black president?" is still being asked as though it's completely plausible. Band-Aids, in my opinion, are another example of subtle racism. I think this has changed, but when I was a kid the peachy-tan crayon was called "Flesh." Laws are only the beginning. My older extended relatives (lifelong southern democrats) are voting for McCain. Mostly because of that ridiculous Obama is a Muslim email and Reverend Wright. Sigh.
  • Selfishly hoping that the Hamas truce over Gaza sticks so that my Palestinian students who have been "stuck" in Gaza can hopefully now get out for visa interviews.
  • I joined Facebook after much pressure from students and colleagues. I want to play Scrabulous - let's play!
  • D. and I have decided to go primarily vegetarian. For ecological reasons more than anything else. Of course we'll still grill the occasional steak or chicken but we'd rather use local, organic and grass-fed. With that expense we can only afford to eat meat once a week at most!

Monday, June 16, 2008

Why Many Women Hate Themselves

Perhaps because we're surrounded by the kind of didactic, self-guessing, divisive, patronizing drivel suggested in these sherbet colored O Magazine taglines?And this is Oprah - not Cosmo! I'm still working on writing down my feelings about the Sex and the City movie, too.

Did anyone else get a little choked up upon seeing the empty desk on the set of Meet the Press?

I may need a media vacation soon. As well as quality time with this little ball:

Sunday, June 08, 2008

The Stars In Alignment

Oh my word, did I ever need this weekend. We had a really great time at Stephanie's for dinner Friday night. The food was amazing and the company even better. I can't wait to do that again! In the meantime I will dream of grilled asparagus and almond cake with fresh berries and vanilla pastry cream.......

Liz and Sean's wedding yesterday was...well, it was perfect. The weather behaved. The spot under the huge oak trees was gorgeous. The small group of family and friends gathered to honor a union that everyone knows is just so good....I cried like a baby throughout the entire ceremony. I just love both of them so much and they are so good together. D. was behind the camera this time so we also got some nice shots of Stella and me for a change.


Liz and Luke, in a shower of rose petals:
Phil, an experienced and talented officiant, and the happy couple.

The kiss.

Luke's first loose tooth.

A pat from mom the bride.

Audrey and Dashiell.

Stella. I love that she let me get a picture of her not making a face.

There was only one toast allowed. Otherwise it would've never ended. Sean appears to be looking down the dress of his new bride.

Liz and me.

Stella and me.

This is mothering a teenage girl.

Mothers and children.

Thanks to the magic of photography, her face did freeze like that, just like they always said.

Friday, June 06, 2008

Forgive Me Marty!*

You're right - I haven't posted anything in forever...but I also know you understand how insane in the membrane I've been. There's been a whole lot of tired and grouchy going around...

It's the beginning of our summer term at work. My workload quadruples during the month of July. I have new students from Thailand, Russia (including a 63 year-old woman who speaks approximately four words in English), Chile, Guatemala, Vietnam, Brazil, Mexico, Peru, and Egypt. We had a welcome barbecue for which I grilled 40 burgers, 42 hot dogs, corn on the cob, and 5 lbs. of chicken. After a few beers we all loosened up and people started playing guitar and singing songs from their homelands. It was too windy for flies but enough to cool the evening just right. What a fun night.

And I'll be honest with you - I watch a lot of tv when I'm not working. It's an unhealthy pattern, I realize, to only have two speeds, but I don't know how else to be.

I know I'm getting old because I suddenly LOVE HGTV! House Hunters, My House is Worth What?!, Flip That House. Is it the mortgage crisis that is making me house-crazy? Or is this some new 1/3 life crisis? I'm a nestaholic. Also, Top Chef has been really good. Richard and Stephanie are so awesome and Lisa keeps getting worse and worse; it makes for addictive television.

But you know, it's not all bad.

It's June so the weather is still unpredictable. It's definitely warm enough for porch parties. I don't have a porch. And don't live in a porch neighborhood. It's a big problem. Porch-owners out there, be grateful...and please invite me over. I need to get out of the house but I won't unless I have to.

So here's what's been working to pull me out of my funk:

  • A crazy-for-not-being-more-disturbing article in The New Yorker about a non-lethal weapon expert. I learned that the Taser is named for an old kids' book called Tom Swift and His Electric Rifle. How creepy and random is that?
  • Cleaning the house (See? Nestaholic).
  • David Sedaris on The Daily Show.
  • Jenna Fischer on Fresh Air.
  • Ripe fruit.
  • Surprise emails.
  • 5 of 9er's good news!
  • Skirts & flip flops.
  • Naps.
  • Another wedding!
  • One of our new students who is an amazing woman from Uganda who helped write the constitution there and started her own NGO dedicated to empowering women and helping children afflicted with AIDS/HIV.
  • Dinner at Stephanie's tonight.
  • Obama.(apologies for the wrinkles.)
*I'm also sorry for not linking to anything.

Um, Just.....No

Monday, June 02, 2008

Memo to This Week:

If you are not at least 50% less stressful than last week then I will be very angry.


P.S. Thanks for a not-as-bad-as-I'd-expected start. I needed that.