Wednesday, October 29, 2008

I didn't die on the way to work this morning.

My new carpool buddy is more desirable than I would have guessed. Not "desirable" in the sexy sexy baby baby way, but "desirable" meaning "completely acceptable carpool buddy."

His name is Nir, he's 20-something and he's attractive and he doesn't smell and he covers his mouth when he yawns and he lives 5 minutes from me and his office is 5 minutes from my office. All lovely qualities to have when I will spend more time with him each week than I will any other single person.

And the thing about carpooling is that I guess the etiquette is to listen to news or something completely non-offensive but I don't even know what those stations are. I'd have to look them up. But the gay dance mix station? That one I know.

So he said that he usually listens to NPR and SERIOUSLY, what is up with all the young people listening to NPR these days? I tried listening to NPR back when I had sattelite radio and I only lasted like 10 minutes because they were talking about war in a country I'd never even heard of. And really, the only reason I even gave it a shot was because I felt peer pressure. Peer pressure to be nerdy, I guess.

We discussed that we were totally fine with the rider sleeping or putting in his or her headphones or whatever (because seriously, do YOU want to have to make small talk for two hours a day? NO) and after having a polite "What do you do, where'd you grow up, how long have you lived in the city" conversation, he busted out his headphones and listened to EVANESCENCE and I listened to the local morning radio show. I never would have pegged him for an Evanescence fan, but there was no mistaking the lady power ballad coming from his earphones.

So now my perfectly lovely and not at all murderer-looking carpool buddy who I found on the internet is at work, I'm safe and sound and I'll pick him up at 5:30 for the ride home.

Friday, October 24, 2008

USS Hornet Cocktail Party

Anyone who knows my family knows that my dad is ALL ABOUT the USS Hornet. It's his baby, his pride and joy. He was on the Hornet in the Marine Detatchment back in the late 60's (which means that he was one of like 50 Marines on board a ship of 2000-ish Sailors) and was there for the Apollo 11 recovery and has all kinds of good stories and stuff. My dad was one of the guys who helped clean it up after it was saved from being sent to the scrap yard and ten years ago, they made it into a museum and last weekend was the big 10th anniversary open house.

Now, if you're a Holt, or really, even if you just KNOW a Holt, you've probably spent plenty of quality time on the Hornet. We've been to events and BBQs and on tours and really, we're kind of over it, but we all love my dad and want to be supportive of his stuff so we make appearances every now and again. Unless you're my mom, in which case you avoid the Hornet like the plague, but she doesn't like getting caught in conversations with retired military guys or the wives of retired military guys, so she's excused.

It had been a while since I'd clocked any time on the Hornet so when my dad said that they were holding an open house and that he had invited a bajillion people I knew I figured WHAT THE I put on my walking shoes and joined him on the Hornet last Saturday.

When I got to the Mar Det area (look at me and all my fancy Marine slang!) I found my dad holding court with a gaggle of lesbionic ladies who wanted to see his video of the Apollo 11 recovery. And OH HAI, my dad figured that since it was an open house, there should be refreshments so he brought beer and wine and chips and dip for people who came to hear his stories. So the lesbians and I had some wine and we watched the video.

When the ladies left, my dad left me in charge while he went to the bathroom. Nobody wanted to talk to me, but that's fine because really, if I had walked by and saw a non-official-looking chick sitting in the Mar Det lounge drinking wine out of a red party cup and saying hello to the passersby, I would have kept on walking too.

So I entertained myself:

My dad had the top bunk, which was VIP because nobody could lean over and barf on you:

The MarDet cocktail lounge:

So anyway, while he was gone I did have one conversation and it was awesome:

Me: Hi.

Lady: Hi. What is this area?

Me: It's the Marine Detatchment area.

Lady: Oh.(Looks confused)

Me: There were a small number of Marines on board with the Sailors.

Lady: Oh.

(And I should point out here that she looked totally normal, educated, non-retarded, etc.)

Me: (smiles and takes a sip of wine)

Lady: What's a Marine?

Me: Um. A Marine. Like, someone in the Marine Corps.

Lady: (Shakes her head, looks at me like I'm speaking Chinese)

Me: The Marines. Like, as opposed to the Navy or the Army or the Air Force.

Lady: (Still doesn't get it.)

Me: It's a branch of the military.

Lady: (Stillllllllllllllllllllll doesn't get it.)

Me: (Trying to figure out how in the hell someone could A) be alive in the world and not understand what I'm telling her and B) be on an AIRCRAFT CARRIER and not understand what I'm telling her! It's not like she was in the Marine Detatchment area of the CONSERVATORY OF FLOWERS or anything!!!!)

Me: Ummmmm...they ran the brig.


Me: Yeah. They were like the police on the ship.


Me: Yeahhhhhhhhh. NOW GO AWAY STUPID LADY!

Except I didn't tell her to go away, I just turned to rummage through my purse for nothing in particular and waited for her to leave.

Other Hornet-related items:

1. There were a ton of Boy Scouts on board. There always are. I don't know why. Maybe there's a patch for visiting an aircraft carrier. But never before have I noticed how RUDE Boy Scouts are. I mean, I guess I expect kids in general to be little shits but I expect Boy Scouts to be polite. THEY WERE NOT. They were cutting in front of me, not allowing right-of-way up and down ladders and were just generally barreling through. The worst part though was that their parents were just standing around watching them be rude so finally I lost my temper and yelled LADIES FIRST!!!!!!!!!!! at a few of them and I heard the mom laugh! I wanted to tell her that her kid needed to be taught some manners, but then someone farted so I kept my opinions on their crappy parenting to myself and moved on.

2. The Hornet wasn't built with any ladies' rooms and most of the bathrooms it does have are prettttty much just communal toilet rooms. Like rows of toilets with walls between them, but no doors. And really, the walls only extend to the end of the toilet seat so if you were sitting there you'd be able to see the knees of all the people in your row and you'd be looking across and facing all the guys pooping in the other row. (And my dad has a story about how they somehow got a bucket of pistachio ice cream and how they ate it with their hands, while sitting on the crappers.)

So how did they modify this bathroom to meet the needs of the ladies? They hung up shower curtains. Frosted clear ones. And they hung them in line with the short walls so if you want to use this particular rest room (there are modern ones upstairs), it's kind of a maneuver and the people next to you can see your knees and the people across from you can see you sitting there.

It's a life experience, folks.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Baby Grady!

Joanie, one of my long-time partners in crime, had herself a BABY yesterday! It has been really difficult for me to really grasp that JOANIE will be someone's MOTHER and I'm still not all the way there, but HOT DOG, Baby Grady is CUTE AS ALL HELL.

(And for the record, I think she'll be an awesome, fun mom so it's not that I'm having trouble with the Mommy Joanie concept because I think she'll suck at it AT's just that when you've done some of your best good-time-having with a person and then all of a sudden she becomes a mom, it's difficult to wrap your head around the whole thing.)

And even though Grady isn't MY baby, I couldn't be prouder of him! He's just a ball of LOVE and I can't wait to see him grow up and be someone fantastic. And because I'm so proud of him, I HAVE TO post some pictures!

Isn't he just PERFECT??

And look how funny he is when he's mad:

Please forgive the blurrrrrr. I was trying to shush him *and* take a camera phone picture and baby shushing = movement = blur. But the old man face is just too cute not to share.

And just to prove that I was there:



I sometimes listen to the country station when the other stations on my pre-set are oozing too much Dave Matthews or Coldplay. So shoot me.

So today I was driving back from lunch and one of those awesomely horrible story songs came on. They usually involve a father dancing with his daughter at her wedding and reminiscing about how small she was the day she was born or how proud he was the day she first walked or blah blah get the drift...schmaltzy stuff that probably shoots straight to the top of father/daughter dance song lists.

But today...ohhhhhhhhhh was awesome. I was listening to this song and I seriously, really, and truly started lolling:

Here's the summary of Bucky Covington's (of American Idol fame!) new hot hit:

* Boy and girl get in a fight after the prom.

* Girl gets out of the car and says I'LL WALK.

* Girl gets hit by a car. (It was dark, her dress was black...I SAW IT COMING, BUCKY!)

* Girl's legs are paralyzed but says I'LL WALK.

* Boy and girl continue dating, wheelchair and all.

* Boy and girl get engaged.

* Father starts to push girl down aisle, girl stops and says I'LL WALK.


Oh dear GOD.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

YES, seriously!

So I have this new job, right? It's 50+ miles from home and the traffic sucks and gas prices may have fallen but until they fall to 1990 prices and I can fill my tank for $15, they're eating up my disposable income like we're at a money buffet. But hey, the internet is a great place and you can sign up for a carpool matching service and after a few clicks and this and that, BADA BING! I found a list of matches.

"Matches" is kind of a loose term though because while technically, I may live within 4 miles of everyone in San Francisco, that does not mean that I'm interested in hauling my cookies to the Outer Sunset or North Beach or whatever to pick these people up. But I did find one who lives a mile or so from me in a direction that is not technically in the direction of the freeway, but is still easily accessible and he works a mile or so from me so I e-mailed him and it seemed like a match made in Heaven -- he already has one carpooler who lives near him and who works near him but they were looking for a third. They both have very flexible schedules and they've been working things out on a day by day basis. Want to go home early today? Sure! Awesome!

So all that is great. I warn him that dude, I drive a Jetta so whoever gets stuck in the backseat might not be up for a comfy ride. He replies and says OH HAI NO PROBLEM, I DRIVE A TWO-DOOR HATCHBACK and that my Jetta is probably bigger than his car.

And you see, the way it works is that we trade off driving. And really, I'd rather not drive at all because my car has seen better days and I spent half my commute wondering if that rattle is supposed to be there or if I'm about to stall out in the middle of the freeway during rush hour.

So this backseat of a two-door hatchback thing? For two hours a day? It's a deal breaker.

I e-mailed him and said that I was going to pass because I didn't think I was up for the back seat of a two-door, but good luck and blah blah blah.

He wrote back and was all "Seriously???"

And I just don't get it. YES, seriously!

How many adults out there actually want to sit in the backseat of a freaking HATCHBACK for two hours every day?? Not me!

Except that now I can't decide if this is an unreasonable request because I've lived my whole life in a fat suit and maybe I just don't know what normal is?

Or maybe it's that he's a 20-something European-of-some-variety male and he doesn't get that a lady all dressed up for work probably doesn't want to pack into the back seat and bag out her pants because she had her knees up to her chest for the 50 mile drive or flash the world when she climbs over the front seat's seat belt while wearing a skirt?

Or maybe it's our two extremes meeting in the middle...I dunno. But YES, SERIOUSLY.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

EH + CK 4 -->

OMG I'M SO BEHIND on my trip recap but whatever...I'll get to that eventually...THIS is the big news of the day:

It's Clinton Kelly! He was in town promoting his new book so Carrie and I shoved into a tiny bookstore with like 100 other women but it was totally worth it.

This one guy stopped to ask me who the heck we were all waiting to see and when I told him that OMG IT'S CLINTON KELLY he had nooooooooooooo idea who he was and was surprised that women care what a man thinks about fashion. I was like DUH, if it's a GAY man, then hell yeah I care...but if we're talking about, say, my brother, then I'm less interested in the style advice.

(And not that my brothers don't look sharp, because they do [EXCEPT FOR THOSE SHOES I HATE, ANDREW!!!!!!!], but I don't think they have much of an opinion when it comes to women's clothing.)