Thursday, July 30, 2009

Lavender and Pie

Okay, #1, I have to repost that video of my sweet, wonderful nephew. Not because he's doing anything but sitting there staring at the crazy lady asking him what he's doing over and over again and thinking "I'M LOOKING AT YOU, THAT'S WHAT I'M DOING, DUMMY!" but because he's just so cute I can't stand it.

But now that's out of the way, I can share the main reason for this post:

It's a "Prodigal Pen" and I don't know what that is, other than my friend Leslie was listening to me whine about the constant breakouts on my chin and claimed to know of a magical little pen thing that would clear up my spots lickety split.

I was skeptical but she brought me one a few weeks ago and OH MY GOSH INTERNET, I have to tell you:

It's awesome.

Breakout? What breakout?


Like magic.

Like this chick whose review I found when I went Googling for more info, I only use it a couple of times a day instead of the 4-5 times a day the instructions suggest and VIOLA! Clear skin.

The onnnnly downside is that it's made up of a bunch of essential oils so it's very scented. I feel like my chin smells like lavender and pie, but this is a small price to pay for continued gorgeousness.


I am currently chewing a half piece of gum I found at the bottom of my purse. I am reminded of how, when desperate for gum, I've been known to chew the gum at the bottom of Carrie's purse, which comes with free tobacco flakes stuck to it.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Thunder Thighs

A few years ago I had a less-than-awesome experience at one of those laser hair removal places that involved:

1. Being told my thighs were so big that they'd need to reschedule me for more time because of how big my big, fat thighs were and PS, your thighs are huge with a side of giant.


3. Them ignoring me.

4. Me calling the freaking ABC TV station and getting their consumer guy involved.

5. Them ignoring him.

6. Him getting his feathers ALL kinds of ruffled.

7. Them finally, after several months, giving me my money back and then telling me I was no longer welcome at their facility.

8. Me writing a bad Yelp review.

And for whatever reason, when a new company (BriteSmile) bought the old company (Pure MedSpa), all the old company's Yelp reviews followed the new company so the new company is understandably motivated to get those old reviews fixed up. Soooo, guess who got an e-mail from the new company asking me to contact them so they could rectify the situation and maybe I'd be so satisfied I'd be willing to rewrite and/or delete my old review?


I called the lady back today but she wasn't there so I'm interested to see what they're gonna offer me and it had better be something more exciting than a bottle of moisturizer or whatever.


1. I am so glad that Jillian picked Ed. If she didn't want him, I'd have been FIRST IN LINE. And if you don't know what I'm talking about, then never mind.

2. My brother just called to tell me that Laurina's work schedule got switched up so that now they're both working the same overnight shifts and CRAP they need to figure out a child care plan and I was like OMG GIVE ME THAT BABY I WANT TO TAKE CARE OF HIM! So maybe...we'll see. I will sleep with him in his crib if I have to.

3. My parents have been less than inspired when coming up with Family Night menus lately because my mom is a crazy picky eater and we are doing Weight Watchers and Sarah is a vegetarian (pescatarian, I guess because she does eat fish but that just sounds toooooo hippie dippie so I'd rather say "vegetarian who eats fish") and we often end up with bbq'd chicken and shrimp and salad. That's lovely and all, but not every week, so last week I put myself in charge of dinner and we had turkey tacos, fish tacos and a hearts of palm, tomato and avocado salad:

My mom is not a taco eater but she likes all the things that go INTO tacos but you put them all together and call it a taco and she'll suddenly think that it's too spicy and OMG SHE MIGHT DIE. But I know my audience so I substituted paprika for the chili powder in the fish recipe and TA DA! Not spicy, but still pretty. It was salty though, which is saying something if *I'M* the one calling it salty. Rachael Ray's recipe called for two tablespoons of salt but that seemed like a lot so I halved it and it was still too salty.

I loved the hearts of palm salad but it was too adventurous for the family so 80% of it ended up in the trash. Poor avocados and tomatoes and hearts of palm. I'd totally make it again, but not for the family.

4. This book was RIDICULOUS:

Madonna's brother is a martyr who complains and then complains some more. I didn't pay for it though so if anyone wants to read it next, please allow me to pass this copy along instead of giving that complainer any money. And if my brothers become world wide pop stars, MARK MY WORDS, I will never complain that they don't book me in a suite when we travel.

5. I've been skewering a lot of things lately:

This one turned out to be something I'd probably feed to other people (unlike most of the food I cook for myself). In fact, maybe my family will soon be enjoying grilled mushrooms, red onions and turkey sausage at an upcoming Family Night!

6. That video I posted last week? I couldn't wait to try out the banana opening technique so when I saw bananas at my local coffee joint the other day, I bought one and documented the process.

Step One:

Step Two:

Step Three:


The only problem with this method is that I've NEVER been one to eat all the way down to the end of a banana because I hate the idea of eating that black stem thing and this method forces you to actually do something about the black stem thing before you can eat your banana. However, I am frequently banana challenged and this method was lickety split easy so I might have to get over myself and just eat the black thing.

7. Sometimes the predictive searches that come up when I'm tying something into Google really kill me:

8. My iPhone sucks at the far away detail shots but that black thing standing above that chick in the yellow shirt is Huey Lewis:

We have family visiting from England right now and Lyn is like Huey Lewis's ONLY English mega fan so when they figured out when they were coming to visit, we figured out of Huey would be touring anywhere nearby so she could get her fix. The closest show was at the Lake Tahoe Music Festival and I like Huey enough to drive her up there so we went!

It was a whirlwind trip -- there and back in one day -- but it was totally worth it. The concert was held on a golf course in Truckee and it was ABSOLUTELY BEAUTIFUL (as most things in the Tahoe area are) and I'd love to do it again next year, but I'd like to spend the night up there so I could join in on the wine drinking and not have to drive home.

Lyn was amazed at the elaborate picnics people brought and how much drinking was going on (it was BYO wine and picnic, but you could buy wine and BBQ there if you wanted to), which I guess makes sense because they couldn't have outdoor events like that in England. But here? HECK YEAH people here go to town with the wine and the cheese and the delicious looking things being pulled out of coolers all around us.

The only thing that kinda put a damper on the night was that the organization of the event was kinda hokey pokey and the earlier you got there (as we did), the further away from the actual venue you had to park and you couldn't really just walk there so you had to wait for shuttles, which were slow in coming. But okay, fine, we can be patient...except that DO YOU KNOW WHAT HAPPENS when you get a few thousand old, wealthy, white people together? THEY BITCH TO NO END about the "public transportation" (uhhh..they were Northstar ski was a VERY FAR CRY from the horrors of Muni, for example) and about the INJUSTICE of having to park so far away when the people who got here later got to park closer and OH MY GOD LET'S ALL BITCH ABOUT IT TOGETHER!

I wanted to respect my elders and I didn't want to embarrass Lyn but if the shuttle hadn't come when it did, I would have told them all to SHUT THEIR FACES BECAUSE YES, I THINK WE ALL UNDERSTAND THAT YOU ARE NOT HAPPY!

They got each other allllll riled up, I tell you.

The ring leader was a PIECE OF WORK, WHO, as it turns out, didn't even have a "preferred" ticket like we did and no matter what time she got there, she would have been in the back. Some people really just complain to complain and boy howdy, it's unattractive.

But once we escaped that lady and her "THE CHAMBER OF COMMERCE *WILL* BE HEARING ABOUT *THIS*!" drama, we settled into our sand chairs (the required BYO seating) and people watched.

And ohhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh, Internet...the people watching was awesome. I could go on and on but I'll just summarize:

A. They all looked the same: The men in Tommy Bahama shirts and the women with complicated hairdos, collagen-filled lips (with lip liner) and big diamonds on their fingers. Mutton dressed as lamb, my mother would say.

B. I'd be willing to bet they were all on their 2nd marriages, at least.

C. We were playing "Spot the Under 40s" and there were a few, but they were ALL with their parents.

D. It's well established that white guys can't dance, right? Well imagine OLD white guys trying to dance. It's a sight to see.

But really, it was a warm, beautiful, perfect night, we were super close to Huey but not so close that we could see his wrinkles, and I'd totally love to go back again.

Friday, July 24, 2009

Stuff I read today

It's Friday, I had a beast of a day at work yesterday so I'm chillaxing today. I can't string enough words together to justify a whole post so instead, here are some things that make me love the internet.

I know people who might think this is a good idea:

True story: I was sitting at my friend Christa's rehearsal dinner and the trainwreck wife of one of the groomsmen decided that THIS was the moment she wanted to overshare so she goes "WHO WANTS TO SEE MY UTERUS??" and whipped an ultrasound photo out of her purse. Except it wasn't even of a baby -- it was of a cyst or something. It's kind a bummer that chick and her husband have since divorced because the well of "OH MY GOD YOU'LL NEVER GUESS WHAT MARNIE DID" stories has dried up.

If you've never had an Indian taco, you don't know what you're missing:

I can't imagine putting forth the effort to make the fry bread myself, but maybe one day. One of the biggest reasons to miss Burning Man is that I'm missing out of my annual Indian taco, which they sell all along the road to get there. I've never stopped for one on the way there, generally because we're full of HURRY UP AND GET THERE excitement but on the way out, it's $5 worth of the most delicious comfort food on the planet.

I love everything on this site, but here's a recent one:



These are ADORABLE and I'd totally try to make them but I GUARANTEE that I'd spend hours and hours trying to get them perfect only to fail and throw them away:

They're cakes, btw...not actual peaches.

This makes me want to run out and find a banana:

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Seven within 24 hours. Oh my gosh.

Okay so FOUR SCORE AND SEVEN YEARS AGO, my friend CK came to visit me from the land of the Texas. He comes out here every May and this year, instead of his traditional Cinco de Mayo visit, we decided that he should come later in the month so he could experience Bay to Breakers.

He is always up for anything and he's a really awesome date so while he was here, we decided that we would have a digestive BONANZA:

1. We would try to hit as many things as we could from the list of 100 Things that I've been working my way through.

2. We were going to make all the weird food crap we've seen on the internet over the years and invite our friends over to clog their arteries.

Gluttony at it's best.

He arrived on a Thursday evening and we promptly went back to my apartment to make Colorado Bulldogs and devise a game plan:

First up: #37, Rotisserie chicken at Limon.

We cabbed out to EGYPT (not really, it felt like it) and eventually got seated, where we enjoyed the most delicious sangria I've ever had and the most delicious rotisserie chicken EVER in the history of the whole entire world:

It was SOOOO good (HOW GOOD WAS IT?) that I've since been back two more times. In a city with as many dining options as San Francisco, I hardly ever go back to the same place twice, much less THREE times in the matter of only a month or so.

All nice and liquored up from the Colorado Bulldogs and the pitcher of sangria, we headed over to my favorite drag queen bar where we proceeded to do sticky sweet shot after sticky sweet shot after sticky sweet shot with Cliff, my up-until-recently-favorite-bartender-ever:

We eventually stumbled home and woke up the next morning, expectedly a teeny bit hungover.

But you know what? We're TROOPERS! We had a list of 100 things to tackle, starting with brunch. And really, eggs benedict cures allll, right? So we beautified and made it over to #77 for eggs benedict on the back patio of Zazie.

You know how when you're dealing with the aftermath of being over-served, the laaast thing you want is another drink even though you know it'll make you feel better? Hair of the dog? Yuck. So we enjoyed our pancakes and eggs with much gentler beverages:

And after some quality time kicking around town, going to that strange pirate store in the Mission, driving up to the Marin headlands and some couch lounging, we mustered up the energy to head out for lunch: #40, a cheeseburger at Taylor's.

I'm kind of an "a burger is a burger is a burger" kind of girl and it was good, but not THE BEST BURGER EVER, OMG.

After the burgers, we had lackluster ginger snaps at Miette (#49) and killed some time people watching at the Ferry Building.

That's not us, btw. We were the people behind them going "This ginger snap kinda sucks. This lavender flavored marshmallow tastes like soap. What time does the bar open?"

We decided to head over to Union Square so we'd be closer to our next list item when it opened (#30, the Laughing Buddha cocktail at Cantina) and OMG ON OUR WAY OVER WE SAW A CELEBRITY!


We saw my internet homie Joel, who I've had a mutual blog-reading friendship with for like 100 years now. He was behind us on the escalator going down to Muni and -- this is horrible -- he recognized me by my jeans, which means two things:

1. I've posted way too many pictures of myself over the years wearing the same damn pair of jeans.

2. I probably need new jeans.

The jeans as seen on that particular day:

The funny thing is that Joel was kind of a part of my weekend anyway so seeing him was SO TOTALLY FITTING:

A. The weird food party was his original idea, I think.

B. We'd already made plans to look for each other at Bay to Breakers. He was planning on running (like, for reals...not with beer-in-hand), I was planning on spectating.

We rode together for a couple of stops and dorked out at running into each other and then it was time for CK and I to get off the train and Joel continued on his way to go pick up his race bib and be a healthy citizen.

High on the excitement of my celebrity sighting, we went to the Gold Dust Lounge, one of my favorite drinking-in-the-middle-of-the-day bars and FINALLY had the hair of the dog we'd been needing.

After the Gold Dust, we went to Cantina and had memorable-if-only-because-they-were-gross cocktails that really had no business being on the list:


We bought sunglasses (NOT Ed Hardy ones...psssscha):

We had #93, seven courses of beef at Pagolac. I don't have any pictures but it was an interactive dining experience and not at all as overwhelmingly gluttonous as it sounds.

After dinner we had #48, Angels on Horseback at Anchor & Hope but since it turns out we don't like oysters (even fried and wrapped in bacon), we really just drank champagne and poked at our plates.

Plus, hello, it had been a DAY OF EATING.

We were full.

More gluttony tomorrow. Or later. Whenever.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

A bunch of nothing much

1. I will be 33 in 30 days.

2. I hope I get married before the only age-appropriate wedding attire is a tasteful cream suit.

3. If internet medicine is to be believed, I think I have pre-cancerous cells on my forehead and maybe also on my chest. It takes 700 years to get in to see a dermatologist though, so I hope I don't end up maybe-dying like that annoying Izzy on Grey's Anatomy.

3a. 33 more days until I have to admit to the dermatologist that I'm no stranger to the blistering sunburns.

Blistery, sticky, vomity sunburns. Mmmmmm.

4. The good news about probably not getting married until I'm too old to wear anything but a tasteful cream suit is that I won't be passing my butt white genes down to any children.

5. The white peach I'm eating tastes like chocolate. I usually get the yellow peaches so I'm not sure if this is just a fluke or if this is just what white peaches taste like.

6. I just cancelled my subscription for like the 75th time. I sent 13 e-mails in the last two weeks and only one responded, but even then I think he was just being polite. This is par for the course.

7. I've decided that I am for sure moving back to San Jose. I wasn't back at my apartment for more than an hour before I started looking for stuff to throw away. Moving sucks, but I do love the brutal pack-or-toss cleansing process.

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Things Not to Discuss on a Job Interview: Religion, Politics and Michael Jackson


Here's where I say RIGHT AT THE TOP that I know pllllllllenty of people are passionate about the opinion opposite of mine and I'd like to say we can agree to disagree except I really just don't think there are any "Yeah buts" that can justify outpouring of grief and sympathy for Michael Jackson.

That said, my platonic life partner, the handsome and talented Mr. Daniel Pieracci, tweeted this article about Michael Jackson and I have to say, I CONCUR:

Some of the points the author makes are kinda harsh, but not unfounded. I'm specifically thinking about how we'd throtttttle anyone who could overlook Hitler's later-in-life activities because, in his youth, he united Germany. Molesting (allegedly) a handful (?) of children is not as bad as dehumanizing and murdering millions of people, but I understand the logic. (Though I'm finding it difficult to say that child molestation is better than something else, but few versus many and all...)

I was SO ANNOYED yesterday because of all the "I hope Michael Jackson knows what a profound, magical influence he was on the universe and that he is up in Heaven listening to all the beautiful things the world has to say about him" posts on Facebook and I had to close the www and focus on something else.

Like WORK or something. Crazy, I know.

I totally get that his music had a "profound, magical influence" on the world and it CERTAINLY is toe-tapping and even I remember where I was when Cousin Rachel brought over her mom's Thriller album, but all this over-the-top mourning of the beauty of his spirit and shit blows my mind.

Seriously, it BLOWS MY MIND.

My mind: Blown.

He was fucked up in a million ways but none of that excuses his actions. I wouldn't go discussing this around the water cooler or anything but I don't mind telling you, Internet, that I think the world is a better place without him.

Small Concession: I do feel bad for his kids. And not just because they somehow ended up as his children, but because I'm sure he loved them and, based on Paris's speech, they loved him back.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

I complain and all, but seriously, my life isn't THAT hard.

I've had my newfangled iPhone 3GS for over two weeks now and I'm not having any of the overheating issues that people are talking about and the 3G network does sometimes disappear and reappear when I'm sitting in the same spot but that is all still very magical to me because I used to have a first generation iPhone and was tortured with Edge, so I won't complain about the network spottiness.

(Annnnnnnnnd non-iPhone users are clicking away right now, I can feel it. I don't blame you.)

So I'm not having those often bitched about issues but I AM having a few issues and I'm going to put them out there to the www just for kicks:

1. Sometimes you can push the picture taking button until the cows come home but it doesn't do anything and you have to close and reopen the camera to get it to work.

2. My self portrait app doesn't work anymore. This isn't the phone's problem, I know, but it's still annoying. The self portrait app allows you to touch anywhere on the screen to take the picture instead of struggling to find the picture taking button when you have the screen turned away from your face. Now with that little zoom focus box thing, you can't touch the screen without the phone thinking you're trying to focus and the whole point of the self portrait app is out the window. I keep checking for updates to the app because I'm sure I'm not the only one with this problem but GAAAAAHLLLLL.

3. I'm not sure if this is a Twitterriffic issue or an iPhone issue but like half the time I try to highlight a tweet, it flickers and won't highlight and takes several attempts to see the damn picture someone has tweeted.

4. I am annoyed that the privilege of using this phone costs me more per month. Stupid AT&T.


And don't you just LOVE that my last post was all "blah blah blah I'm poor" and this one is all "I just dropped a few hundred bucks on a phone"?

Fun fact: I bought my last iPhone with my first unemployment check, but that was back when I'd just received a fat severance check and couldn't imagine that it could POSSSSSIBLY take me more than a month or so to find a job.


My next post will be about how frugal and responsible I am.

Why so srs?

It's no surprise that I've been thinking about moving back to San Jose. There are two big draws:

1. BABY! He doesn't currrrrrently live in San Jose, but Grandma and Grandpa live in San Jose and they have a lot of pull when it comes to getting quality baby time, so the closer I am to them, the closer I can be to him.

2. I work in San Jose and the commute is a bitch. An expensive, expensive bitch. Plus, driving 100 miles a day, five days a week means that I've put 18,000 miles on my new car and it's only nine months old.

Of course, I own my apartment in San Francisco, this isn't a good time to sell and even if I could sell and make money on it, I'm afraid to sell it because I'd never get another mortgage, what with the whole "no longer giving mortgages to people who can't afford them" thing.

So there's that.

But I could rent it out and more than cover my rent in San Jose.

Except that then I sit back and I think about the hole I dug for myself when I was unemployed for the better part of 2008 and how I'm never going to get out of it if I'm still spending all this money every month trying to keep living in San Francisco and working in San Jose.

And then the delicate balance of my current situation is only something I can maintain, however painfully, if I continue to have a job. THIS job, specifically. Or, not THIS job, but a job in this salary range which, I'm afraid, I might be underqualified to find again if I had to.

I am ONE MILLION PERCENT lucky that my parents have been as supportive as they have and that, if I wanted to, I could stay in San Francisco and just hope for the best and if all else fails, I know they'd have my back. My too-old-for-Mommy-and-Daddy's-help back, but they'd have it nonetheless.

But then I wonder if maybe my newly heightened fear of losing my job is a warning sign and that I should take this opportunity to get my ducks in a row when I don't HAVE to, but when it's still an optional thing. If I don't do it, I'm afraid I'll look back in a year and wish that I could go back to the summer of 2009 and do things differently.

One of my resolutions for 2009 was to move back to San Jose. I was SO OVER San Francisco. But now when I look back on that I know this decision was made when I was coming out of the Great Funk of 2008 and now, several months later, I don't really want to go. All I can think about is how DUMB it is for a single person to move to San Jose ON PURPOSE and how I'll never have delicious brunch EVER AGAIN. I love San Jose and if I ever have a family, I'll want to do it there...but now? Ehhhh.

BUT THEN when I house sat for Ben and Sarah for several days this past spring, I fell back in love with the idea of suburban life. Everything seemed so easy! Look at that! A life free of elevators and parking garages and choosing between open windows or hearing the TV! Luxury!

So I don't know.

Then yesterday my friend Leslie asked me if I was still planning to move because her friend is looking for a place in my neighborhood. I told her that I was waiting for something specific to get me to get up off my ass and do it and I don't know if this exact potential renter will want my place, but it did get me thinking.

Maybe I should rent my place out and move in with my parents for several months so I can pocket the rent and get my shit together and then, as a result, feel better about myself and feel less trapped by my financial neeeeeed to keep climbing the corporate ladder?

I spent about a year with my parents right before I bought my apartment and I really never thought I'd consider it as an option again, but have you noticed? Things are sucky right now. While there is some shame in this option, there would be more shame in losing my job again and having to ask my parents for a mortgage payment.

I'm all for tightening my belt as we alllllll ride out the current economic fiasco but my belt has felt really tight for three years now and it hurrrrrrts. The trade off will be that I'd be 33 and living with MY PARENTS. My parents are great, but maaaaan, I'm sitting here wondering why I thought it was okay to kill time at Bloomingdale's when I was UNEMPLOYED.

But daaaaamn, I looked good.

I looked around my apartment last night and thought about how pretty it is and how much I love it and how, if I moved back in with my parents I'd be living with the ironing board and a strange bamboo curtain that my dad must have found in a dumpster somewhere and decided that he'd not only use it as a closet door in the guest room but, WHY NOT just hang that extra six inches of bamboo curtain on the wall and pretend it's art??!!

I'll be sad to leave my beautiful apartment and my beautiful things for the Tiki/Victorian-themed guest room but when I think about all the money I'll save it makes me want to roll around in $100 bills.

I'm house sitting for Ben and Sarah again this weekend and I'm hoping that I'll get bitten by the suburban bug again and if I do, I'm gonna start packing things up. I'm also hoping that when I finally make the decision to do it, I'll feel the same relief I felt the first time I decided to move back home.

My budget spreadsheet is currently titled "Poor." Maybe one day I can change it to "Okay."

Ohhhhh, the anticipation of the spreadsheet renaming!!!