Thursday, June 30, 2005

Inevitability, Exhibit A

Low Rider Jeans taken to their logical conclusion. And hopefully drowned there. DO YOU HEAR ME, RETAIL FASHION INDUSTRY? Enough with the Ultra Super Ultimate "So Low You Have to Go Brazilian and Commando To Wear Them" Jeans!

P.S. Don't worry, the picture is safe for work, but not if your office has a thing against laughing hysterically or crying into your coffee cup for five minutes straight.

Wednesday, June 29, 2005

Phones y Flores


Retina-searing Magnificence

I grew up with a father who was "The Anti-Phone." You know, like "The Anti-Drug" ads, except that my dad's specific concern was not narcotics but telephones. He thought excessive use was dangerous to health, social skills, and probably our spleens or something. I don't know the particulars; I just know that talking on the phone was for business purposes ONLY. Friendships were to be maintained with letters or visits IN PERSON. That's not all bad, but it would be pricey for me at this juncture. So last night I went on a "HA! Take THAT Upbringing!" spree. I called KD, Best Maid of Honor in Annals of History and resident of Kentucky, my family (and I talked to Dad, incidentally) in Michigan, and HF of the Awesome Bohemian Hair in Maryland. Recently I've also been talking to friends in Idaho, Indiana, Virginia, and more in Michigan. Where's Daddy's little girl now, HUH? I'm sure I did a lot of good things with my growing-up time that my peers were spending on rehashing into a receiver Jody Z's wretched vest and the rumors that Matt and Sarah were, in fact dating, even though Matt totally two-timed Sarah's best friend last year. [I actually MET UP with friends to do that sort of in-depth analysis.] It's just nice to have the freedom (and the cell phone minutes) to keep up with them.

Anyhow, the picture above was taken in my mini-garden. I planted those large impatiens with my mother when they visited back in early May. She reminded me that I hadn't posted any pictures of them yet, and she is right in making me share the wealth. I've been hit-and-miss with proper care, but such forgiving plants are they that they continue to bloom. I enjoy their vibrantly-colored little faces beeming up at me from my patio. I wish you could see the velvet texture of their petals, but the color is so bright, it obliterates it. Here's one instance in which calling me or reading my blog just won't substitute for a personal visit. Okay, Dad, I GIVE.

Tuesday, June 28, 2005

"Yeah, shoot me when that happens!"

This article is brief, but interesting. The Arrested Development quote in the subject line refers to the following line:

"The last thing we want is to look back in 10 years and find that we have unwittingly created the same cliches that female advertising is riddled with," Bernardin said.

Boy, howdy.

Monday, June 27, 2005

and it goes something like this . . .

I did it. I went to my first counseling session. I was worried about "explaining" myself, giving the ole song and dance, but I did it. The counselor was very nice, had a good sense of humor, and was most likely a Christian. He didn't think I needed to be on meds (yay!), and he gave me some ideas for little things to do that might get my mind going in the right direction. Most of them, incidentally, had nothing to do with mental exercises. Basically, he said to get my can out the door and start doing some of the things I've been afraid to try. Except he said it sweetly, without referring to my buttocks in any way whatsoever. We'll see how this goes. I see him again in two weeks, hopefully not to get the psychological stink-eye for avoiding my homework.

We were talking about how much change I undertook between graduating college, leaving home to get married, moving to a new place, and GETTIN' HITCHED. He said it was only natural for emotions to be delayed because the events (while they were happening) were too immediate and consuming to allow me to process, and now that life is more routine, I'm processing the heck out of them. Then he asked me what the best thing about my life was. Now, I never have just one thought like this - it's always five thoughts practically all at once and then I'm weighing and testing each before blurting out the wrong one. Heh! But my first thought was "K." For as much as the first year is the hardest, we seem to have weathered it fairly well if, at that magic One Year mark, it's such a highlight of my life. Bravo, K! You get the Gold Star of Keeping Your Wife Sane.

So, I should go. I have some errands to run. Yes, they're related to company work - SHEESH.

Oh, and hello to all the people in the following countries (I'm sure it's just one each but WHATEVER NAY-SAYERS and PEOPLE WHO LIKE BEING FACTUAL) who visited my blog last Friday and shattered all my previous stats records. I love you all. *SMOOCH*
Mexico
Estonia
Austria
UK
Singapore
Spain
Argentina

Thursday, June 23, 2005

On Domes, and Dorks Who Photograph Them Too Much


Ceiling, Hall of Statuary

Last night was "off the hook." We saw a bunch of folks we loved from college. They came from different circles of acquaintance so we felt like our heads were on swivels, but we enjoyed talking, snarfing delicious beef-kabobs, and the tour of an amazing place. "Truly scrumptious." (First song you'll get stuck in your head as a result of reading this post. Let's collect them all!)


Lovely dome, but the lamp cables really make it an interesting visual

The evening started out in the Cannon Office Building, listening to the usual alumni-giving pitch, eating, and chatting ("Peck a little, talk a little, cheep, cheep, cheep" - Song #2!). The representative talked through some of the tour with us since we had over 100 people tramping through and he knew it'd get hard to hear. Then we headed over and so began the relentless picture snapping.

I had been in the Capitol once before in October of 1998 for a Junior-class trip. I sat in the gallery of the House Chamber as they debated whether to impeach President Clinton. Yeah, I felt pretty sweet. My class was taking first-year Rhetoric (shout out to all you Classical-schoolers out there!) and we had fodder for class discussion for weeks from that. This time through the gallery, they were reciting the names of the fallen in Iraq. I heard a name that sounded like one of my brother's friend from boot camp. More sobering than "sweet."

We saw the Hall of Statuary (as if the first two pictures didn't clue you in), which may be my favorite room there. Lovely. And the plaques on the floor where the desks of historical figures once stood - stirring. Also stirring, this:


Evening light streams in the windows of the Capitol Rotunda

Unfortunately, I was too busy talking to a friend to hear most of the tour lecture at this point. Also, BAD acoustics for listening in a crowd, but it was still visually stunning. Plus, KD interned there and her encyclopedic brain could give me the schpiel any time I like. Hubster took the above shot, as well as this one:


The Dome of the Rotunda

What an eye! I guess the subject is nice, too. Although putting George Washington in a sort of god-like position in the clouds? mmm, weird. Not that he wasn't a great man, it's just a bit of a stretch. (Shakes Head) Now, on to the grand finale:


70's Coverband Concert on the Steps of the Capitol of the Free World

We took a spin by the front of the building on our way back to the car, and we heard a concert going on. As we walked by, "Just the Two of Us" (#3! woohoo!) blasted in our general direction. Democracy at its finest, folks.

A smattering of things on a Thursday

None of which, mercifully, have anything to do with poop. Mira:


World War II Memorial

I just love these eagles. They're holding ribbons in their mouths that support a giant wreath of oak leaves. Honor, service, and birds bringing you things: Bravo, designer, bravo. Another hit in that memorial, the wall of stars representing thousands of casualties each. If you stand right in the center of it's semi-circular sweep, it's overwhelming. It helps to have the theme from "Band of Brothers" running through your mind, too. I wish I had time to hit it up tonight, but I think it'll be too late.

Also, I read this on lunch, and it was chortle-worthy. I just love Dan Kennedy.

Now, on with work and then TALLY HO, Capitol!

Wednesday, June 22, 2005

On the bright side, I stepped in poop today.

In my own home, no less! Percy decided to leave a poop on the carpet (although a tiny one) and I walked right through it. WITH BARE FEET. The horror. Meh, that's why we have paper towels and disinfectants and the like. Despite that, yesterday was a better day, and today was a good day, so hopefully there won't be too much more seriousness around here for a while.

Here's a quick list of the little things that keep me up currently:

1. "Fragrant night" is a poetic turn of phrase, but tonight, as I drove home from a whirlwind Target run, I actually used it. It smelled delicious out there. Where am I and where's my usual suburban funk? Nevermind, you can keep it.
2. The aforementioned Target run in which I acquired a hair straightener, Purell hand sanitzer (Hubster's been asking for that for weeks!), and a frame for our slammin' wedding portrait.
3. The hair straightener. I was leery of Conair's cheap price, but wow. WOW! It works quickly and splendidly. That alone should make today a red letter day!
4. Hubster's new game of choice, Battlefield 2, arrived in the mail today and he's still been very sweet and attentive this evening. The Man, the Marvel, the Good Gamer/Husband.
5. As I write, I am mere hours away from an alumni event at which I will tour the Capitol, snarf down some hors d'oeuvres, and see lots of college friends. Ooo, and for once I know what I'm doing with my hair . . .
6. I'm remembering this from Charlottesville, and it's just beautiful:


Lilies and serpentine walls on UVA Grounds

Tuesday, June 21, 2005

Seriousness Descends On FyF

I've started this post several times in the last few months. As much as I began this blog to be a therapeutic journal, it's much more public than your usual pen-and-paper variety. Was this even the right medium for anything other than the informative and the entertaining? I want a place to vent my frustration, clear my head, but I don't want to be too open and honest with The Internet. I think the only people who read this are friends (and perhaps friends of friends) but it's still unnerving. So I keep it light, talk about my hobbies, travels, and daily life while sanitizing all of these things from the Deeply Personal.

I have friends who have wonderful blogs about political and social issues. I don't always know what to think of those controversies, so it might seem that I've spent a lot of time writing meaningless things to shy away from them. But I don't pretend to have their breadth of experience or knowledge, and what I write here is self-consciously parochial. Maybe you'll find it clich├ęd. I know my betters have described this state with eloquence and sensitivity, but this isn't their space, and my therapy needs to work for ME.

So much for disclaimers. Most of you know that I've been struggling with a kind of depression for a year or two. (I say "a kind" because I'm a hopeless qualifier and I have never felt that it's quite as deep others' emotional issues.) I hope this is not news to those of you who know me well. I think I've told everyone, but it's not exactly the kind of thing you talk about on the sidewalk at Homecoming, especially for me. I don't bring it up casually, knowing the tears that will inevitably follow and ruin any hope of a light-hearted talk with you. Plus they always spoil my make-up. Not chic.

I'm writing this now because yesterday was a down day. I can go a while before hitting one, but as I found out a month ago, even when the trajectory is upward, a down day can hit me so hard I'll be reeling for days afterward. I always thought their ferocity would be dampened by all the good moments in between, but I guess the mind doesn't work like that, and last night was flat-out scary.

Background: I grew up in a wonderful family. Dad and Mom loved my two brothers and I. They encouraged my spirit, my brain, my development. My mother taught at my private school and drove 45 minutes each way for a couple of years because it was best for us. My father worked incredibly hard to keep the family running. They told me they loved me so often, I doubt it was only once a day. I was my own person, and I developed as such under their care. Then came the hothouse of middle and high school. Middle school was lonely for a plump thinking girl, but high school yielded some incredible friendships which last to this day. It also gave me a chance to discover that I wasn't a social dud; I just hadn't found my niche before. With that sort of nutrition, I became a confident person. College began as an extension of that life, but after a year or so, I had a boyfriend and good classes, but not many friends for a Friday night. So began the doubt, the frustration, and eventually, the raw pain of loneliness and depression.

Later college and this past year have negated some of my former impressions of myself. I've learned that when I'm out of the hothouse I'm passive-aggressive, reserved, and self-conscious, none of which I ever attributed to myself before. I know we all have our faults, but being wrong and being someone different than I thought I was . . . Well, it was devastating. I thought I was a good friend, outgoing, and confident. Would my friends see the changes wrought in this new environment and wish they had the Hothouse Erica? The question made my anxious, so I buried it all beneath movie nights with my boyfriend, study, visits home, and trying to be normal. But often the ways of dealing with the pain were relational and relationships were a sore spot then. I wasn't close by non-college friends (hello boonies of PA!) and college friends weren't well-versed on my background. Could I ever get them to understand the Me-That-Was and Unhappy Me on my way to the Real Me, especially since most of them hated high school and were finally thriving in their collegiate niches? Also, for the first time in my life I knew of things that I didn't want to share with friends right away, and for a girl who had been taught that friendship was openness and unconditional love, the first prospect loomed frighteningly, making the second unattainable.

Life continued, as it's prone to do. I got engaged to my marvelous husband and started looking at the Great Beyond, College Edition. I struggled a lot that senior year, so when a friend who had lived through depression suggested I visit the college psychologist, I did. Unfortunately, it was only weeks away from graduation, and at a high point when I was receiving academic and emotional support I hadn't before. I went twice and, though I got a few key insights from him, I needed that psychologist more a few months later when my marriage was beginning to force my growth and sapping what little strength I had in reserve, as it inevitably does in the first few months (or so I hear).

Which brings us to the present day. As I said earlier, I experience fairly long stretches when my hope is strong. Sure we haven't knit in to "our" church yet nor do I have friends close enough to spend time with me regularly, but at least I feel those goals will be met in the near future. Someday I will understand myself well enough to be comfortable again - to talk without self-conscious pangs and fear, always fear. Still, last night a vice closed on my chest and I couldn't stop the sobbing anguish I felt. K stuck with me, wrapping his arms around me as I wept, but to some extent, there's not much he can do. I know if he weren't here the problem would be ten-fold, but then again, sometimes it is our relationship that makes me drop into the bottomless well. It's complicated; so very complicated that I lose my way.

Perhaps that's where I feel most betrayed. Most of my life, I have listened to the advice of my elders and mature peers and to the voice of reason they inform, and thinking my way out of the well has worked. Now every time I reach for a hand hold, my thoughts pull me downward. I've prayed, I've distracted myself, I've talked with friends, family, and people I respect. I feel myself slowly rising, slowly gaining some measure of control and progress. And then it's last night all over again.

I'm going to try a counseling opportunity that K found. I need wisdom more than commiseration. Don't get me wrong, the encouragement of my friends is why I'm still having more up days than down, but it doesn't really point the way out. What you, friends, can offer me is what you have all known to give: prayer, words of hope, advice when you've got it, a listening ear when you don't.

Even when I wake up with puffy eyes, a reminder of the havoc of darkness, I know that God is with me. I have come back from the brink when I thought He meant me harm. Wasn't it Him who gave me that riotous growth in high school? I listen to Rachmaninoff's "Blagoslovi, Dushe Moya, Gospoda" and I bless His name with those voices and look to the hope of morning. And I have to remember that suffering bears good fruit - humility, perseverence, trust (paradoxic, isn't it?), and ultimately, deeper faith. I just have to find those highlights to get me through.

"For the Lord will comfort Zion, He will comfort all her waste places; He will make her wilderness like Eden, and her desert places like the garden of the Lord; Joy and gladness will be found in it; Thanksgiving and the voice of melody." (Isaiah 51:3)

template 2.0

I'm sorry for the insanity on this page lately. You're used to that from my content, but not my template. I've spent several hours at a time changing little things and republishing every ten minutes or so. My apologies. Also, Hubster pointed out that the first version of the template was wide as the Mississippi and too much for most screens, so I made it all narrower. No one likes a side-scroller. ;) Also, I added a picture that M took over the weekend. And again I owe much to Citrus Moon for the pattern and a good portion of code for the layout. Many thanks to them both.

Sunday, June 19, 2005

Playing Dress Up

I feel like a little girl standing in giant high heels, staring in the mirror with admiration at Mom's smashing dress and sighing for things to come. I'm blogging on a Mac. Like a real designer or something. It's lovely, but it's also cruel because I'm such a Windows dork, doing all the wrong things, using short-cuts that don't work. Sigh. Someday. ;)

Anyhow, I'm at Mair's house. Take a look at a bit of what I've been doing, and then wait around for tomorrow's full recap.

Thursday, June 16, 2005

And now for something completely different:

"A man with a stote through his head."

Sorry, K and I watch Monty Python, so we have those tidbits saved up. Anyhow, as you can see, my bundle o' bugs is up. And it is very different from my last layout. We'll see how this goes. Everything should work just fine, I'm just frustrated by some of the stylistic elements that refuse to change for me. Even K got roped into looking at the code (just last night, though - otherwise I did it all by myself like a big kid!) and HE couldn't figure out what's going on with it. We're going to work on it when I get back because WE HAVE TO BE SMARTER THAN THE MACHINE!

Speaking of getting back in the future tense, I'm leaving. It's my last conference of the season! (That gnashing of teeth you hear? The rest of my co-workers - heh) I'm going to this one with the current Coordinator. Should be good. I'm leaving Saturday night, however, once my duties have been discharged, and heading toward sweltering Charlottesville, VA to see my partner in blog, to dye my hair with her help, to eat A LOT, and to just hang out with her. Some work, some play makes Erica a happy girl!

Wednesday, June 15, 2005

Reality Check

I wish I could work on code like nerds in movies. After long hours staring at the screen, the words meld together for them and suddenly they have visions of rabbits, take the red pill, and get to save the human race from enslavement. No, I stare at the code for what I hope will become my new template and it always look the same: inexplicable, simple, yet prone to misbehavior. My lunch-time blogging has turned into code wrangling, and I'm gonna be SO GLAD to put this soon-to-be-debugged mess online. Forgive me; I know not what I'm doing.

Monday, June 13, 2005

Weekend Update (my apologies to SNL)

Friday night we were graced with the presence of our friend MZ, the best Best Man ever. We hadn't seen him since the wedding that gave him his chance to outshine every other man to fill those uncomfortable, patent-leather shoes. Much of life was caught up on, much eating and drinking was done, much fun was had. He left in the morning for a flight from BWI, and the rest of our Saturday was spent chilling, sprucing, and hanging out just K&E. We went to see Mr. and Mrs. Smith, and we thoroughly enjoyed it. Fun, fanciful, funny, if frivolous, we think you, too, should put your matinee money on a sure bet such as that movie.

Yesterday I finally stopped fidgiting with M-lo's template long enough to let her use it. I've been working on it for a couple of weeks now, and I finally decided it was done. I looked at my stats and I don't think any of you checked my page during that period of time, but I used my own blog to test the template before handing it off, so you might have been a weeee bit confuuuused to find my content under my friend's title. Still, it was a successful change-over and even K noticed that I didn't have to consult him every second with questions. Yay for new hobbies I'm not half bad at! Plus, this hobby means I'm independently working on the computer while K can play Battlefield 2. K, in a surprise Liebnizian turn, declares this to be the best of all possible worlds. He's cute, so I go with it.

The other thing we did Sunday was go out for dinner to the local Bertucci's. I had a pizza with tons of roasted garlic on it. So. Good. Today's lunch (the leftovers) beckons me from the fridge as we speak. "Eat the pizza. eeeeaaatt thheeee pizzzzaaaaaa." Some of you may be thinking this is all too dangerous. I shouldn't tempt my breakfast-full belly with that such scrumptiousness. Four words: I live for danger.

Now, heigh ho, heigh ho, it's off to work I go. Tonight I'm making my family's world-famous Teriyake Stir Fry of the Gods for dinner and the return of MZ. He's staying overnight and then heading back home tomorrow morning. I'm just loving this long weekend feel. Sadly, I still have eight hours ahead of me, so . . . heigh ho, heigh ho, it's off to work I go . . . (cue recorded whistling so I don't feel like a dumbkopf) . . . dum dum, de dum, de dum de dum dum dum

Thursday, June 09, 2005

Ode To IKEA

As my husband and I traipse your showroom with care,
We observe that your products are stunning and spare.
Atop that fine table, and next to that closet,
We envision which vase, book, or lamp to deposit.
Our feet now grow tired, but spirits are high
When a perfect TV stand my little eyes spy.
I ogle its finish of cherry with pewter
The shelves and glass door simply could not be cuter.
In it's ample spaces our stuff would go nicely,
With places for all electronics concisely.
The design and the color, so hot that they smoke,
Are tempting a gamble to just go for broke.
We steel our convictions against the fell blow,
And turn over the price tag to see what we'd owe.
One hundred and thirty-nine dollars it says,
Hallelujahs in chorus leap into our heads.
For this humble value, we'll spring without doubt,
And watch our new unit till we're just as stout.


Happy New TV Stand Day!

Wednesday, June 08, 2005

One more for the road

First Google search someone followed to me. I feel like I'VE ARRIVED! "pictures of erica flores," you have made me SO happy.

Some Firsts.

1. First day taking Persephone outside. We tried doing this earlier when we bought the hot-pink harness for her in the first place, but she just lay in the hallway by our door, trying to bat at the string we used as a leash. NOT so successful. This time, we carried her down to the park behind the complex and set her down. Walking on the grass was hilarious - she kept sorta squatting on the ground as she moved. She was VERY LEERY of this "Outside" stuff. We let her look around (mostly from her spot lying on the ground), walk around just the tiniest bit, and then we went home. It probably lasted all of 30 minutes. We've got to get her able to handle it all. We're hoping to take her on vacation to the Cape and that's too long a drive for her to hold it. We'll see how THAT goes.

2. First shot at making smoothies. We just felt like having them last night, so we thought we'd wing it. Bananas, ice, and low-cal ice cream never tasted so good. We're PROS. Pros, I say!

3. First use of our central air for the summer. It's officially decided to be HOT around here (and elsewhere in the country, my sources tell me) JUST THIS WEEK. Yesterday we nearly sweated all our water fat clean off. We decided that the time had come. Aaaah. So nice and cool now. We actually hadn't been using our heat for probably two months or more, either, so YAY for saving money! :-D

4. First snub by my parents. We called them for their b-days, left a message, and waited for a reply. We decided to take matters into our own hands and call THEM last night, and they were, apparently, TOO COOL FOR SCHOOL. We feel low.

5. First tweak to my template since I put it up over a month ago. Wowsers. I can't believe I waited this long. This is the girl who must change her desktop every few days or risk EXTREME UN-PRODUCTIVITY until it's new and shiny and OOOOO, PRETTY COLORS. Enjoy the new background pattern. Heh - not like you noticed.

Tuesday, June 07, 2005

"Oh, when you see it then you'll understand."

Ever since "Don't Panic" on Parachutes, I've been a sucker for a thrilling Coldplay riff. For the first time ever, K and I pre-ordered an album, their latest, X & Y. We got it on iTunes, so the files became usable today (the official release date of the project).

It is so awesome, you should probably not call/email today because I'm feeling dreamy ("Speed of Sound"), melancholic ("Swallowed In The Sea"), happy ("White Shadows"), then deeply sad ("Fix You"), then buoyed up and suspended by sound, and thought, and raw emotion (the rest of the album). I'm unfettered by my otherwise ceaseless thought-life, and I just listen, just feel, just relish the nuances of a melodic piano theme, or a bass riff, or the pure falsetto of a voice straining to reach the high-ground of life - beauty, truth in expression.

What is music that it can move me like this? I've heard that a hundred times from parents campaigning to keep school music programs, from musicians, from composers, from Theists, from Atheists, from the young and old, rich and poor of every culture and time. They don't all love the same music, but they love that organized sound, mixed with their cultural instruments and technology, expressing their lives in notes and wails and beats.

I'm totally rambling, guys. I'm sorry. Music makes me happy, but it also makes me crazy. Nonetheless, I hereby commission you to grab that CD, that old mixed cassette, that instrument that makes you lose yourself in sound, and GET LOST. I won't even bother to wish you a good day because IT WILL BE with that sort of agenda.

Monday, June 06, 2005

Bosses Take Note: I Utterly Failed at Taking the Day Off


Happy Birthdays to My Little Buttercups: C (06/02), Dad (06/03), Lil Bro P (06/05), Mom (06/06), and H (06/07)

I tried to take the day off today. I really did. But what with getting back to people for work that COULD NOT WAIT, opening mail related to work and reading brochure after brochure, and then chatting up the co-workers just for kicks, I pretty much worked today. Poopy. At least I got to set my schedule and goof off A LOT! I also exercised (and it felt GOOD! WHO AM I AND WHAT HAVE I DONE WITH ME?), did some laundry, cleaned the cat's litter box (CLEANED, not just refreshed), caught up on a wee bit o' email, and slept in. Meh, it could be worse.

Anyhow, I'm sending a shout-out to some fabulous people who overwhelmed my well-wishing schedule this month. I hope your days were/are/will be lovely, and I'm praying for another awesome year for each of you. Miss you all!

Friday, June 03, 2005

Scrumptious, Serendipitous Syracuse

The conference is going alright so far. We had hours on Thursday night - NOT GOOD. But today was llooooonnnnggggg. I mean painfully so. Ten hours of talky, selly, talky, no sleepy. When 7 o'clock finally came, it was tough to think of anything but food. C randomly found a brochure of restaurants in and around Syracuse, and we looked at it because, though we knew we could always head back to this nice mall we hit up last night, we were in the mood for something different. We saw a bunch listed in something they called "Armory Square," so we decided to go where the restaurants were. We found it through directions from the hotel and there were places to eat EVERYWHERE.

We settled on Pastabilities, admittedly because of the name. They had the most marvelous spicy tomato oil for dipping your bread. We almost regretted ordering the Thai lettuce wrap appetizer because we want to eat and eat and eat all that yummy, bready, tomato-y goodness. After eating, we felt stuffed and wanted to wander and settle our stomachs. We ran SMACK DAB into an annual festival called the Taste of Syracause. So crazy! Hello, FOOOOOOD, but then there's the street merchants. I got an amber pendant on a chain for $10. TEN DOLLARS!!!! It's a pretty good-sized chunk, too. Yay for bargain amber!

So we finally picked one of the twenty billion delicious-looking chocolatey shops and I got THREE chocolate-dipped strawberries and some more rambling. Just thinking back to that lovely bit of sweet berry cocoa . . . "la vida es sueno."

Wednesday, June 01, 2005

Listing Wednesday

1. I do not believe I have emphasized this enough: chocolate-covered espresso beans are the ambrosia of the Starbucks Age.

2. Birds chirp A LOT. I have had my window open all day and they are still at it. Don't they have sustenance to acquire or nests full of so-ugly-they're-adorable chicks for which to regurgitate food? Just saying, they're chatty.

3. Today K and I hope to visit a cafe in a town that may later be our home if we like it. Oh, and if we can afford anything there. I'm strangely geeked. Wait, it's not strange. I'm really an idealistic dork and looking at something that MIGHT be a daydream come true is just the sort of pathetic fodder I need.

4. Yesterday, while running an errand, I drove by the local high school and saw three camara crews from local news stations taping for the evening news. Apparently some teacher got busted for drug-related stupidity. For as much as they're supposed to be about town, I rarely see TV crews. I thought of watching the news just to see if my car made it in any of the video, but then I decided that was an incredibly dumb idea. Plus, navy CR-V - not exactly rare in this town (I'm looking to M for the commentary on that).

5. I leave tomorrow morning for my penultimate conference of the season. It's with C, whom one boss dubbed The Funniest Woman in Homeschooling, and I'm looking forward to it. Let's hope we enjoy ourselves, even if we have exhibition hall hours tomorrow night ON TOP of traveling ON TOP of the fact that it's her birthday and she has so much yuckiness to endure. Heh, all I can think of is Turk saying: "Elliot, this woman doesn't like me. It could keep me from becoming the youngest chief of surgery in history, which could keep me from curing paralysis, which could keep me from having my birthday be a national holiday! And everyone knows I hate to work on my birthday!" I'm with you, Black Whale.

6. Oh, and one last thing, because we've all been there.