Friday, August 28, 2009

Only Child

1. It occurs to me that I think it's kind of weird that Baby doesn't have a twin. I mean, my brothers are special snowflakes in that they're natural twins and I know that's rare-ish and all and I don't really even think of my brothers as TWINS...more like brothers who were born on the same day...yet I was just re-watching a video of Baby for the umpteenth time and I went "Whoa! He doesn't have a Ben!"

Poor Baby.

2. Speaking of Ben: Ben, Sarah and I are flying to LA tonight so we can show Sarah that yes, she picked the best half of California and that no, the other half is not as glamorous as she thinks it will be.

I'm going to flaunt my Northern California-ness by refusing to add a "the" to the beginning of a freeway name.

The sightseeing is not our only reason for visiting though. My parents are driving down tomorrow so we can all (minus Andrew & family) attend my cousin Farah's wedding. Except that she ACTUALLY got married in NY a couple of weeks ago so this is the California shin-dig.

THANK YOU FARAH FOR NOT MAKING ME GO TO NEW YORK IN AUGUST!

Humidity does not suit me.

3. That's all I have for you today, Internet.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Don't mind me...

This post is 100% for my mom because her computer has challenges and it won't play videos of my wonderful nephew via Flickr, but WILL play videos that I upload here.

HERE YOU GO MOM!

video

video

Sorry about that everyone.

Then again, it's not like I'm uploading videos of paint drying or anything.

Buuuuuuuut, maybe videos of other peoples' kids ARE kind of like watching paint drying? I dunno.

CONSIDER YOURSELVES WARNED!

My Earliest Memory

I would have been nearly three years old because I remember my mom being pretty pregnant with my brothers and I didn't really know where babies came from but I knew that if I asked my mom about it, it would make her squirm.

So I asked, of course.

She denies that she ever said anything this inaccurate but I remember it VERY CLEARLY:

"When two people love each other a lot, God gives them a baby."

QUOTE END QUOTE.

I had no idea where they ACTUALLY came from but I knew this wasn't it.

My brother likes to coo at Baby and tell him that "Mommy and Daddy made you with love, Little Guy!"

And then I throw up.

Friday, August 21, 2009

Things

1. I re-ran my last run of the Golden Gate Bridge as a San Francisco resident this morning. I'm working from home and was able to get up early enough, so why not? I'm pleased to report:

* I didn't see any suicidal people this time.

* I ran THE WHOLE THING AND THEN BACK TO THE MARIN TOWER! If my calculations are correct, this is 2.2 miles, which BOGGLES MY MIND.

ME?

Run 2.2 miles without stopping?

ME AND MY MORBID OBESITY??

Y-E-S!

Of course it took me 25 minutes to do it, but Rome wasn't built in a day.

(But OMG my morbid obesity and I can run for 25 whole minutes IN A ROW without dying, which is something I'm very proud of, especially considering I couldn't run half a lap when I first started "running".)

2. 14 more pounds until I am able to graduate from morbid obesity to just regular obesity, by the way. I know that BMI tables are CRAP, but it's not like I'm just a little bit fat, so the bullshit lines between healthy and unhealthy weights are kinda a moot point.

3. In other news, I had this little, uh, growth like thing on my forehead and I ignored it for a long time and then read about how Dooce had something similar that turned out to be pre-Cancerous cells so I broke down and made an appointment with a dermatologist and even though I was CONVINCED it was bad news she was like "Oh hey, no problem...just some 'waxy cell build up' -- want me to burn it off?" And since I DO NOT LIKE WAXY BUILD UP ANYWHERE, PARTICULARLY ON MY FACE I said "Yes please!"

So she did:



It shows up way better now than it did right after my office visit, but I marched myself out of that building and sat in my car for like 20 minutes trying to get a good shot of my waxy build up. I wasn't particularly successful but I did learn that the extreme FGA produces some CREEPY LOOKING angles. For example, this is one I like to call "I'm Going to Eat Your Soul With a Side of Brains":



3a. Coincidentally, there was an article about non-Cancerous skin things in the Sept/Oct issue of Weight Watchers magazine and it totally discussed my particular variety of waxy cell build up, but I don't really know how to tell the difference between waxy cell build up and something I actually need to worry about so I'll leave the diagnosing to the professionals. Plus, I'm blonde with blue eyes, I've lived in a sunny climate for my whole life and only started wearing regular sunscreen ten or so years ago...I figure it's not so much a matter of if I'll find something that needs to be removed, but when.

3b. I'd also like to say that my friend Lauren had the BAD kind of skin cancer and had it removed and all, but she was only like 23-ish when that happened and despite spending her life up until that point as a sun and tanning bed worshipper, she has done a 180 and is all about the sunblock and shade. There are 100 things I love about Lauren, and her ability to hit the brakes and change her lifestyle like that is one of them. I admire her for it.

I think it's kind of like how when people have heart attacks they get the wake up calls to take better care of themselves, but by that point they're older and they recognize how fragile and precious life is...but a 23-year-old embracing that same attitude is pretty rare.

4. My bathroom light switches have been a problem for oh...say...two years now and my friend Henry (a retired electrician) has offered to fix them for me several times but I've been putting it off and putting it off and, as a result, I've taken more than one shower in the dark.

I finally called Henry last night and he came over this morning and BADA BING, they're fixed. I'm going to turn the lights on and off all day today just because I can.

My dad also put in the moulding along the bathroom floor so now, nearly three years after I pulled the original moulding off in a fit of "THIS IS UGLY GET IT OUT OF HERE," and what I'd classify as EPIC procrastination on my part, I have bathroom moulding.

And in approximately 21 hours, movers will be here to move me out of this apartment with the FINALLY FINISHED bathroom that someone else will get to enjoy.

Ahhh, timing.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Stalker

I just checked the searches that directed people to this blog and here are a few of the new & noteworthy ones:

how to spell booger on a calculator

truckee pirate weight watchers

hokey pokey this week video


I don't know how to spell booger on a calculator, if there's a Weight Watchers in Truckee for pirates I don't know anything about it and I haven't done the hokey pokey in years.

Also, there's a disturbing trend of searches for my future sister-in-law, the details of the upcoming wedding, etc. As a result, I'm going mum on all of that.

You see Stalker, THIS IS WHY WE CAN'T HAVE NICE THINGS.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Intuition

It's a milestone day, Internet.

I went for my last run across the Golden Gate Bridge as a San Francisco resident. PLUS, instead of turning around at the Marin County line (the second tower) like I usually do, I decided to shoot for the end of the bridge itself (only an extra half mile, but this marks my longest run ever) and VICTORY WAS MINE! I am really proud of myself, particularly since when I first started running I couldn't even run half of a lap at the track.

Then something unsettling happened.

But first, the demographics of the GGB in the 7AM/8AM hours are as follows:

The first half mile or so of the bridge (starting from the SF side) has the tourists who are moseying out to look and take pictures. There aren't too many that early in the morning, but they're always there. The middle of the bridge is empty except for the runners and MAYBE a few hearty tourists. The Marin end of the bridge usually has a few folks doing the half mile out mosey from the other side.

So on my outbound run this morning I saw a lady somewhere near the middle, totally out of mosey territory, walking at a leisurely pace. I noticed her because she was that far out on the bridge but didn't appear to have a camera with her, which I think is like a required accessory for the non-exercisers. I wondered what she was doing, but I didn't think too much of it. I assumed she was being alone with her thoughts or something.

I finished my run across and started walking back and I had just passed the Marin tower when I crossed paths with her again. This time I was able to see her face and she looked sad. Not really even just sad, but really upset and in pain. She wasn't crying or anything, but the look on her face really affected me and I walked a few more feet thinking that I should go back and ask her if she was okay.

Noooo, don't be silly. Maybe she's just cold and her face looks like that because it's cold and windy. Mind your own business, Elizabeth.

So I continued walking and thinking about her for a couple of minutes but I couldn't shake the feeling that I should turn around and go back to her. I stopped walking and stood there for a second, trying to decide what I should do.

Go about my business?

Or backtrack to go ask that stranger if she was okay?

I wasn't even thinking about it in a "she might jump" kind of way...it really was just out of concern and I thought maybe it might make her feel better to know that I cared. (Old age has turned me soft.)

I decided that even though it was totally out of character for me, I would turn around to at least just walk in her direction and then re-evaluate when I got closer.

BUT THEN!

When I stopped to think about what I should do I noticed two police cars pass (which is unusual) but I didn't put two and two together until I turned around to go back and saw that they had stopped next to the lady and a police officer was putting his arm around her.

I'm telling you, Internet, I just about burst into tears right then and there. My intuition had been SCREAMING at me to TURN AROUND AND GO MAKE SURE THAT LADY IS OKAY but I was too busy trying to talk myself out of it to listen and seeing the police with the lady made me realize that my intuition was 100% right on the money.

I don't know what happened to tip the police off, but a few minutes later two CHP and two bridge patrol cars passed with their lights on, which seems like A LOT of police coverage for one potentially suicidal lady, but I was relieved to know that I wasn't wrong -- something was definitely going on with her and that someone was there to keep her from doing it.

Where there's a will, there's a way and all, but NOT ON MY WATCH.

That said, I:

1. Feel like an asshole for being grateful that I didn't have to get involved.

2. Feel like an asshole because I'm a little bit annoyed that my last GGB run / longest run ever has been overshadowed.

Friday, August 14, 2009

Not ALL anonymous commenters are telling you that you're fat and stupid! Some are VALUABLE!

OH MY GOD whoever that anon commenter was the other day who pointed me to this link is my NEW BEST FRIEND:

http://www.howtogeek.com/howto/3210/drown-out-that-annoying-co-worker-without-hurting-your-ears/

Through that link I found Simply Noise and I SWEAR TO YOU, Internet, I'm a whole new woman. It's magical how it drowns out alllll the snorts and snot sucking and grunting and coughing and isn't distracting AT ALL.

The downside is that without my protective bubble of white noise (actually, I like the brown noise at 40%) my irritation level SKY ROCKETS. I was on a conference call with a mouth breather so I had that in one ear and the grunter in the other ear and I think I might have a little bit of a problem because I was craaazy cranky and I felt like a junkie twitching for her next hit.

I'm afraid to take my ear buds out and face the real world!

But WITH my protective bubble of white (brown) noise?

Oh my goodness.

I can't stop working because now all of a sudden I am focused and give a crap about the Quote to Cash process!

YAY!

Anyhooters, thanks a million Anon.

My, your buns are warm in the morning!

I am 33 today.

My grandfather used to flip the numbers in his age. Only if it suited him, of course, but since he died at 100, his nineties were easy targets for his tricks. 98th birthday? No siree, 89th!

So today I'm 33, which means I've thought of Boppa many times today because if he were alive he'd tell me that 33 doesn't do me any good because I'm 33 either way. Of course, the next several years won't be useful either...34/43, etc.

But anyway, I'm thinking of Boppa today.

Speaking of, Boppa's death taught me that when people die, they don't actually disappear. This is all very kumbaya of me, I know, but we still actively remember and talk about him and really, it's like he's still here.

Jeeeeze, Elizabeth. Happy Birthday, let's talk about your dead grandfather.

Moving on...

So it's my birthday and I'm now eight days away from moving out of San Francisco, so what better excuse to have one last morning bun from Tartine for breakfast?

I've never really been a breakfast breads person (I'm more the BRING ON THE SAUSAGE type) but I had one of those there morning buns a few months ago because they're on the list of things to try in San Francisco before you die and BOY HOWDY, it was delicious. So delicious, in fact, that I believe I posted a picture of it here.

Yes, in fact, I did:



It's a good thing it's such a PAIN IN THE ASS to park over by Tartine because otherwise I'd be over there every day eating pressed sandwiches, olive bread, tarts and morning buns.

But today is my birthday so I put forth the effort and got there right when they opened and DO YOU KNOW WHAT MAGIC EXISTS IN THE WORLD RIGHT WHEN THE BAKERY OPENS?

WARM morning buns!

Holy crap, it was delicious but holy crap, I'm not used to eating warm, sugary, buttery bread products so early in the morning and now I feel kinda gross, so I'm trying to flush it out with lots of water and no more coffee.

The middle part of my birthday will be spent deciphering a bunch of work stuff that I'm SO UNQUALIFIED to be responsible for, but have somehow been put in charge of.
It'll be a laugh riot.

Then tonight I'm going to dinner with the family, but it'll be an early night because tomorrow I will embark on Operation: Pack My Kitchen. I might also work on Operation: Drink the Rest of the Beer. TBD.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

I think I dodged a bullet.

I went on a job interview last week. I was really excited about it because it was my dream job (if I HAVE to work, that is) but I had some reservations because it was a global role for a company that is significantly larger than the huge company I already work for. If I had my druthers, I'd prefer something smaller (more direct impact) and domestic (YOU try scheduling conference calls with France and Singapore), but I'd also prefer to quit contracting (the benefits and the uncertainty suck) so if I got it I'd be thrilled for the opportunity.

My friend Dave, a man I respect very much and who is crazy smart in the world of the biz-nass, told me that when I look at a job description, I should totally have 1/3 of the required skills, be able to pretty much figure out 1/3 of the required skills, and that the last 1/3 should be stuff I'd have to stretch in order to figure out. I'm sure recruiters and hiring managers of the world might disagree, but Dave was looking at it from the personal and career development perspectives and I'm on board with that, so the 1/3 of this particular job that would have been a stretch didn't scare me.

I had three phone interviews with remote team members and nailed them all and then I had three in-person interviews last week. I was feeling very confident about the first two and everyone told me GLOWING things about the Director (to whom this position reports) and I was excited to knock her socks off during my third in-person interview.

Except then I fell flat on my face.

We didn't have a great rapport, which was a huge red flag because I can talk to just about anyone, but to make things worse, she asked me questions that, in retrospect, were kind of unfair. More specifically, I think they were trick questions. What I should have done was answered them in a "Defining exactly what an engaged employee looks like is very specific to the project, the organization, the company..." kind of way instead of trying to figure out what I thought an engaged employee at this particular company might look like because there's a 0% chance that I'd be able to guess.d

Blah blah blah, but I missed the boat on this question. I should have explained how I'd propose we go about defining it instead of trying to define it on the fly.

And boy howdy, I could tell the moment I screwed it up and my immediate instinct was to just get up and leave right then and there, but maybe I could salvage it? Except in order to salvage it, I needed to have a rapport with this lady and I just really DID NOT.

I left the interview totally knowing I wasn't going to get this job and I was really bummed about it for like 15 minutes and wishing I could have a do-over. Ultimately, I managed to talk myself into being okay with it and when I got my rejection e-mail yesterday I just deleted it and was appreciative that I had already mourned and recovered.

Kind of like when you're already OVER a man and by the time he finally gets around to saying "I'm just not that into you" you're like "Yeah, whatever Molasses...I cared a week ago but today I think you probably shouldn't let the door hit you on the ass."

Bonus Story:

One of the chicks who interviewed me told me that she just moved to San Francisco from Oregon and:

1. She just bought an apartment in The Infinity and told me that they've only sold like 20 units so far so she has the entire 31st floor to herself. She asked my opinion on buying a couch and dining table for her balcony and is the fall in SF really as nice as people say because at this point, she can't imagine having dinner parties out there with the weather as it has been? I suggested that she bite the bullet and go for it because even if she just has cocktail hour outside, it'll be worth it and if it's too cold, the dinners themselves could be held inside. Plus, just for kicks, why not buy a heat lamp too?

She thought I was very smart. Obvs, duh.

2. Her Oregon friends said that she couldn't wear her leather coat here and I was like "Uhh, I don't think the hippies are really going to give you trouble for a leather coat" and then she was like "Well, what if it has a fur collar and fur cuffs?" I didn't know what to tell her about that but lucky for me, she switched the subject to announce that "You know, living in California is like living in a foreign country, what with all that SPANISH that people are speaking." And then she rolled her eyes to accentuate her point.

Ohhhhhhhhhhh.

Wow.

Instead of telling her that YOU DO REALIZE THAT CALIFORNIA IS NEXT TO MEXICO AND, IN FACT, USED TO BE PART OF MEXICO, RIGHT? I was like "Well I'm a native so I guess I don't notice it, hey, I really like your necklace."

This woman was in HR, by the way.

In Summary:

1. I learned a lesson.

2. I'm pleased with how I processed it all.

3. I'm glad I don't have to work with the lady who clearly has an opinion on living so close to the Mexican border.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

1. I get to babysit my SWEET, WONDERFUL nephew on Monday night. GRANDMA, EAT YOUR HEART OUT!!!

2. I'm between projects at work and my main accomplishment of the day was clearing 200+ unread items from my Serious Eats queue. As a result, I bring you the #1 thing I never thought I'd eat, but that has now been cemented into the OH HELLLL NO category:

On second thought, I'm not going to post the picture here directly but instead, I'm going to make you click for it. Chicken feet always seemed horrifying, but reading about how you have to clip their toenails before you cook them really brought the horror to a whole new level.

3. Another gem from my day-o-blog-reading:



If that's not full of WTF, I don't know what is.

4. In other news:

A. We celebrated my brothers' 30th birthday on Saturday. I got Ben a gift card to his favorite frozen yogurt place (he has one, apparently) because Sarah said he'd LOVE it and I was like "Ehhhh...it's frozen yogurt...is this really 30TH BIRTHDAY WOO HOO??" Except whoa -- Sarah was right -- he just about did backflips.

You learn something new every day.

B. The guy on the other side of the cube wall could stop grunting any time now and I'd be happy.

C. I listed my apartment for rent on Craigslist and I have two people coming to look at it tomorrow night. Luckily, I don't HAVE TO get a renter RIGHT THIS MINUTE because I'm going to move this month one way or another, but I'm hoping that one of these two chicks wants it so I can wash my hands of this process.

One of them wants to move in 8/15 which puts me in a bit of a time crunch because, if you've noticed, there's only one weekend between now and 8/15 and I'll have to move on 8/14 which, CONVENIENTLY, is my birthday. No big whoop or anything except I somehow got the whole family to agree to come to SF for dinner on my birthday (a feat, let me tell you).

So we'll see. I'm working on being patient about it all, but trying to keep the place in relative order until someone commits to renting it is making me crazy because there's so much to do and I have to sit on my hands to keep from packing more boxes and creating more mess.