Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Christmas Mix

When my alarm went off this morning, Matchbox Twenty's, "Merry New York Christmas" was playing. As a New Yorker this song really resonates with me and can always coax some sort of a Christmas mood out of me. This came in handy this morning as it's Christmas Eve Eve and I'm just not quite drunk with holiday cheer just yet. I'm not even tipsy.

I've had little shots of Christmas here and there but, seeing as how I've raised my tolerance over the years, since they've been spaced out over the course of the last month or so, I really haven't been able to maintain a buzz.

So after waking up to one of my favorite Christmas songs this morning, I decided to break out the whiskey strength way to induce holiday cheer (or 'how to get drunk on cheer' as the analogy seems to be going) and burn a Christmas Mix CD for my car. My car now has a more festive soundtrack than even Santa's sleigh. There are classics like "I'm Dreaming of a White Christmas" as well as newer songs by Britney, N'Sync, and Mariah.

Because even Ebenezer Scrooge knows that "All I Want for Christmas is You."

Monday, December 22, 2008

Christmas Eve Eve Eve

Each year as I grow up the holidays seem to come out of nowhere that much more quickly. There's the standard commercial rush that pushes Christmas on us before our Thanksgiving turkey is even in the oven, but it's more than that. I could pontificate endlessly about Christmas cheer spread thin, but that's all been said before. Besides, my feelings on the subject are far more selfish.

Regardless of the Christmas commercials and holiday stores specials and p.c. decorations, I just feel like Christmas has become a bit hollow for me. In college it was so easy to get caught up in the Christmas spirit. Having attended a Jesuit institution, Christmas was everywhere you turned (not "the holidays" mind you, but Christmas thank you very much), it was easy to remember "the reason for the season" as my mother would say. There was Lessons and Carols, where students, faculty, alumni and residents from the surrounding areas came to sing Christmas Carols and hear the passages that related to them. There was Christmas break, not to be confused with winter break. And Christmas decorations covered the campus, making each walk home from campus just a little bit more magical in the evenings (or the early morning hours).

Post-college it seems that my Christmas gear-up consists only of shopping and even that doesn't do much for me anymore. The malls are crowded with people who aren't even shopping, but came along for the ride. It is my firm belief that the stores should be open for 1 hour each morning during the holiday season for serious shoppers. You're not allowed to enter the store without a list, you are given a time limit of 15 minutes per store and you have a 4 store maximum. If you need to get to different stores in 4 different corners of the mall, then you'd better walk fast.

Maybe it's the recession this year, maybe it's the fact that I don't have a significant other, maybe it's just that I'm growing up and I don't like that at all, but whatever it is, I need to seriously ponder how I can change it for next year because I'm not a bah-humbug kind of gal and this whole Debbie Downer Christmas Special just isn't going to fly two years in a row.

Now I'm going to put on The Waitress' "Christmas Wrapping" and see if I can't lift my spirit a bit.

Friday, December 19, 2008

Tory Burch

So I hit up the Tory Burch sample sale this week and was greatly disappointed. The last sale had such a better selection. Granted, TB has much better clothes for spring and summer, I guess I was just expecting cuter sweaters and the like.

The shoe selection wasn't good either. There were mostly black boots, and I have so many of those, they had one pair of practically flat brown boots (I say practically because the small heel they did have was a squat gold thing no bigger than a quarter of an inch) and a pair of brown mock-croc ankle boots that really weren't very cute. The only shoes I liked were her canvas converse-y flats and they were asking $75 for them, which I found ridiculous for a pair of glorified sneakers.

Naturally I got the e-mail today that they are dropping the prices (about $20 per item) and got all annoyed because for the 3 shirts I did get, I could have saved $60. The weather is supposed to be terrible all weekend, so who knows if I would have made it in anyway, it's just irritating. On the other hand, the pants did go down to $45.00 a pair and if I can get into the city over the weekend, I'm going to get a couple of pairs because they fit me really nicely.

So if you're in the city and you can stop by, the sale is worth it. If you're not, I'd say that this is one you could go without. Feel free to post any specific questions about what they had when I was there Wednesday and I'll answer to the best of my ability

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Toad-Induced Worry Wart

In general, my worry setting is either "On" or "Off." It's not like I'm constantly worrying about some small thing all the time; I'm either freaking out completely or cruising through my day, not a care in my little world.

My father has many sayings, but one of them is "Don't get in a fight on the way to the fight." This along with a Ziggy comic I found years ago that says, "Worrying is like a roller-coaster; there are a lot of ups and downs and you always wind up in the same place" are two of the more valid analogies I've ever heard. So I try to make that my policy.

So when someone tells me, at a time when I can do noting about it, that there might be a problem, I'm kind of like, "Really? You're telling me this now? You couldn't tell me before so I could look into it?" Obviously we're past the point where they could have told me before, but they didn't, thus here we are.

So why not wait to tell me until you know if there's actually a problem or not? Because by telling me now, if there's in fact no problem, well then you just worried me for no reason.

So my question is; are you still a Worry Wart if the cause of your worry is the toad sitting on your hand?

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Grand Theft Kimbo

Racing up the middle lane of the expressway I shift back over into the fast lane, cutting off the person talking on their cell phone. Or, at least, that's what I imagine they are doing; I can't really tell because it's raining this morning, making my commute that much more of a challenge.

Do you ever feel like your commute is like a video game with obstacles at every turn? Those mornings you hit every traffic light and sit at the red wishing you knew Seth Green's character in The Italian Job. "You'll never catch the real Napster," right?

People on cell phones and red lights aren't the only obstacles though; the other morning I saw a man sleep-driving. Perhaps this is the next step-up from sleep walking and he was part of a clinical study, but somehow I doubt that. Besides, don't those experiments take place in a closed course with controlled conditions? Let's hope so.

So obstacle after obstacle I begrudgingly made my way to work this morning. At the big turn off the final main road I found myself on the cut-through side street facing a school bus. Stop-sign out like a gun drawn in the old westerns I could hear that music in the background, like a low whistle. Fortunately the flashing lights went off and he pulled the stop sign back in before I had to draw. Yellow belly.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Yesterday's Case of the Mondays

So yesterday I woke up late, got in here late and just had a general case of the Mondays. Thankfully that wasn't combined with a case of the mean reds. Either way, I was pretty cranky and wouldn't have written anything of interest (whether I do that on a regular basis is something yet to be determined on here anyway).

I did get some great shopping done over the weekend. Some gifts for the fam for Christmas and a few gifts for me too. My biggest score was probably the Miu Miu gold strappy sandals that I scored for under $100. I heart having small feet. Nordstrom Rack was where it was at and if you have small feet as well I recommend you go there since they always have a wide selection in the 5-6 range.

In other news, this week is the Tory Burch sample sale at clothingline. I'm going either today or today so I'll keep you all updated on my winnings.

Friday, December 12, 2008

Impatience is not a Virtue

Each morning I stay in bed 3-7 minutes longer than I should, inevitably throwing off the rest of my morning until I get to work. This has consequently made me late to work fairly often by 5-10 minutes and I don't like to be late to work, regardless of how flexible my employers are, so I then tried to come up with different ways to cut down on my prep time.

Last week I started picking my clothes out the night before. This sounds silly, especially since I could come to work in sweatpants or a clown costume and it wouldn't matter, I rarely interact face to face with anyone outside the office, but in order to keep some semblance of self I feel compelled to at least put on jeans and a sweater. This little compulsion was costing me 3-5 minutes each morning, so this helped. Until it got to be really cold in the mornings and I realized that this could translate into a little bit longer in bed.

This week's tactic has been to throw my entire body up into sitting position the minute my alarm goes off. If the cold air has already hit my skin, it seems as though I have a 70% better chance of getting out of bed (the other 30% is for the extra cold days when the air hits me and I say 'screw this, I'm not ready for the cold').

Today should have gone off without a hitch. Unfortunately I woke up by hitting my elbow into the dresser. I was gaging my progress by expressway exits and doing well, well enough to stop at the deli and reward myself with an egg sandwich.

And that's where it all went wrong. So this is what I have to say to the girl who waited on me this morning:

Working at a deli is all about multi-tasking. people go to a deli for quick service, good food, and cheap prices. This morning you provided two of those three. Why you felt the need to put in each grill order individually, rather than taking several at once and getting them all to cook on the grill simultaneously, is beyond me.

So, yes, I was opening and closing my phone hoping that the snapping noise would give you a hint as to my impatience. Yes, I was rolling my eyes as you carried the bag of rolls from one end of the deli counter to the other instead of checking on the progress of my sandwich (which judging by the temperature when I ate it at my office, was most certainly ready at that point). And yes, I was short with you when you asked 'Is that it?' My 'Yeah' was meant to escape in that staccato burst because it was already 7:01 and you're still ringing me up.

So here's to you deli girl, may it take you forever to get your first drink at happy hour tonight or your take-out food for dinner. May the servers wherever you go tonight have your same sense of urgency on the job.

Wasn't being late my fault in the first place, you might argue, yes. Is my anger misplaced? Absolutely. But where's the fun in acknowledging that?

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Leaving 7-11 at 7:11

So I am all sorts of loopy right now. Late to work. Over-tired. Wondering how I'm going to feel later. And basically wishing I could go back to bed.

Left the house during the 5 minute window of my "normal time to leave without being late" and still wound up not getting off my exit until 7:00. Of course I couldn't go to work without sustenance, so I stopped at Sevs. After selecting my buttered roll, coffee, and Vitamin Water, I make my purchase and peace out. When I get in the car I look to see just how late I am and the green neon mocks me; "7:11."

Seriously? I left 7-11 at 7:11? There must be some sort of prize for doing that unintentionally. Well, maybe not a prize, but this morning I pretty much feel like everything I manage to do deserves some sort of reward.

Last night was our neighborhood Christmas dinner and I am exhausted. While I didn't do much to help prepare (I owe the roomies for this one) I did bake a cake that took 2 hours to cook in our oven. K, D and I didn't get to bed until after midnight and that's way past my bedtime.

Speaking of bedtime - is it nap time yet?

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Watching Paint Dry

So the old adage for being bored is that whatever you're doing is "like watching paint dry." This morning it is so boring at work that I actually had to paint something just in order to watch it dry. Or watch "them" dry really, I painted my nails.

Normally I'm against doing something so noticeable at work (the smell is always a dead giveaway, if it wasn't many more women would paint their nails on the train), but no one is here and there is nothing going on. Base coat done.

Few things bug me more than when the nail polish doesn't cover the sides of my nails, but making sure I get them usually means getting polish on my cuticle, and I wind up wiping the excess on the desk calendar at my mom's seat. So much for no one noticing. First coat of color done.

This has to be as boring to read as it is to sit here. Maybe tomorrow I'll bring in a coloring book. Second coat done.


Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Miley's "Rumors" - Eh, I mean "Fly on the Wall" Video

So I'm getting ready in the morning with MTV on and I hear annoying little Miley Cyrus with her catchy pop tunes in the background. When I actually pause for a moment to see the video, I realize that it's a cross between the Lindsay Lohan "Rumors" video and Michael Jackson's "Beat It." Now I know that no one is original anymore because it's just about impossible to accomplish, but if you're going to copy someone, why LiLo?

Back when "Rumors" first came out I was still quite the LiLo fan. She was from a neighboring hometown and a felt a certain sense of simpatico with her. The video cracked me up because the dance moves were strongly reminiscent of the cheerleading moves at the High School she went to, but I figured that's what I would have done had my pop star dreams ever come true.

Now Miley's doing it over again and she doesn't even attempt the choreography really. She just throws her arms around and wiggles her fingers together (I guess to symbolize "creepy little") like all the girls listening to it at their winter formals will be doing. You would think that with all of her dance war videos and whatnot that she could come up with something better, but maybe "Manders" (of Milers and Manders YouTube fame of course) was the brains behind the operation.


Monday, December 8, 2008

How Much I Like You: As Measured By Facebook Response

My Senior year of college Facebook came out. Still totally obsessed with my school and the tattered hard copy of the original Loyola Freshman Facebook that my roommates and I all received our first day at school, this seemed like the natural progression bringing it to an electronic format that could be accessed from anywhere.

So I like to think of myself as part of the test group for Facebook, a loyal (Loyola) user since 2004. People who made fun of me for belonging to the social networking site back then now have pages and hundreds of "friends" and yet I refrain from reminding them of this; I understand their initial hesitance.

The funny thing is, those who have joined so late in the game don't see how Facebook has changed. Sure they have accepted it into their general lexicon, but they weren't around for the evolution. They didn't witness addition of applications, the pre-newsfeed days, the time before tagging pictures and the change that rocked the Facebook nation: the "new" format (which I still don't like).

Discussing this with new Facebook users is pointless as I will inevitably sound like a zealot, but if you're on the Internet so much that you're reading random blogs then there's a chance you'll understand where I'm coming from.

It's gotten to the point where people are asking one another at bars, "Are you on Facebook?" If I wake up on a Saturday or Sunday morning and I see a new friend request from someone I met the night before I am likely to have two reactions.

One: Indifference. You seemed banal and I don't see the harm in accepting, but I'm not terribly excited about it. This might also be mixed with a little bit of disappointment if I met another person I was hoping to get a request from and did not, so your little e-mail alert was a false positive. I add you to my friends and don't even bother looking at your profile. Ever.
Two: Excitement. Yes, you are the person I was hoping to hear from. I am also hoping you are interested in me beyond the realm of Facebook. This is sad. I am aware.

Every once in awhile there's another response mixed in there. For example, this Sunday I woke to find a friend request that I was not expecting and, even though I was hoping for another one, I found myself pleasantly surprised. I did the full profile check-out and everything.

To be honest, I think that that's part of the appeal for me. In today's dating world it is so hard to meet someone and once you do it's difficult to get to know them. There's so much time wasted pretending you're not interested or waiting for them to show that they're interested before responding. If you're able to look at someones Facebook page you can see if you like the same music, movies, or even if you're of the same religious background if that's important to you. It's a sort of background check and while people could manufacture a page to make them seem a certain way that's pretty manipulative and on the unlikely side. Besides, if someones straight up lying, people can always post on their page and call them on it. Kind of like Facebook justice?

And I'm back in the zealot territory.

Friday, December 5, 2008

Eggs Friday

At my old job, when I worked in the city, every Friday my friend Meghan and I would get eggs for breakfast. Since we worked "in fashion" every girl was super weight conscious, even if they didn't have to be, so eggs on a Friday was a treat.

Personally, I got a toasted sesame bagel with cream cheese every other day, so eggs Friday was more to break the monotony than shrink my waist size (especially since even when the rest of my body shrinks, my waist stays the same as always, like that of a 12 year old boy).

But now when I observe the holiday all it does is remind me of the fact that I no longer work in the city. Bummer.

Yesterday I applied to 2 jobs. Postings have slowed considerably with everyone cutting back and I must admit that I miss the days of sending out 5 cover letters a day. Despite my best attempts to "always look on the bright side of life" I'm finding it difficult not to notice that I'm several cast members short of the Monty Python kick line required to perform that song.

Plenty to do to keep me busy though, holiday parties and whatnot (the holidays are my other standard answer as to why no one is hiring right now). I may need to go all shopaholic though and freeze my main CC in a block of ice, freeze my spending if you will.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Tattoo #2

Back in college I got my first tattoo. It was not your standard 'I was so messed up and I woke up with a huge butterfly tribal symbol across my back' situation though.

After wanting a tattoo for years I finally decided that I would get one in college when a friend of my parents gave my sisters and I money for the holidays and said we could spend it however we wanted. My sensible sisters probably bought sweaters or alcohol, but I decided that, whereas those were things I had actually budgeted for, extra money should be spent on something you hadn't purchased yet because you hadn't had surplus cash.

So I did a little research and on a random weeknight, sitting on the back of a couch in our guy friends' dorm room, I looked at my roommate and quietly said, "You want to go with me tomorrow to get a tattoo?" To which she said "Yeah!" then paused and said, "I don't have to get one too, right?" No, L, did not have to get one too, but I was a little concerned that I might be in too much pain to drive home and I wanted a witness anyway.

The next morning we went downtown to the Baltimore tattoo museum and I showed the big, burly, and very sweet tattoo artist the Gemini symbol I had picked out. Simple, black, small, and something that would always be true about me. He penned a trial version on my right lower back, we decided it was too high (I didn't want it to be visible in every pair of pants I wore), and he said he'd adjust it.

Straddling the backwards stool, fit with handlebars for gripping in pain, I chatted with my roommate until he said to take a look.

"Yeah, there's good, you can do it."
He and L just looked at me. "It's done," he informed me.

And so I had my first tattoo.

7 years later and I think I'm finally ready for #2, which is funny since the first looks just like a swirly Roman numeral two, or my second tattoo. As I mentioned before my first one is on my right lower back, and off center tramp stamp, so I'd like to go with a different area of my body.

For awhile I really like the wrist tattoo, but I'm (unfortunately) not a rock star, so I just don't think that's appropriate. Right now it's looking like it's going to go on the left side of my rib cage, just below where my bra sits, although I'm not sure if I'll go vertical or horizontal with it. The design will somehow involve 3 stars for my sisters and I, but I think I'm going to keep it basic.

For awhile I was playing around with the idea of a "3" in a really cool font, but then I remembered that everyone confuses my first tattoo with a roman numeral, or worse when my pants are covering the bottom of it a pie symbol, so I think I'll stay away from anything else that could go with a math geek theme.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Deli Guy

As is the case with so many people, my morning coffee sets the tone for my day. Fortunately for me there is a deli down the block from where I work that makes excellent coffee and is 25-50 cents cheaper than 7-11 and Dunkin Donuts respectively. So each morning I stop there and each morning the people who work there feel the need to converse with me before I've had said cup of coffee.

This is not such a terrible offense and I realize that the people who work at the deli have no way of knowing that I am not a morning person and no reason to oblige my moods even if they did. It was even bearable when my hours were a very flexible 9-5 (with random days off) and the deli lady and I would engage in friendly banter.

Recently my hours changed and I now work 7-5 (no more leaving early, only scheduled days off). In order to be in any sort of mood to deal with my co-workers (more for their sake than mine really) I need my coffee in the morning. True coffee drinkers and non-morning people will understand why I say need instead of want; I must have my coffee if I'm going to be up earlier than 9am. Is it all in my head? Maybe it started that way, but at this point it's a full-blown caffeine addiction and any addict without their substance of choice is going to be something to recon with... but I digress.

So, since my hours have changed, the deli guy is the one who makes my coffee every morning. Prior to the hours shift I already had an aversion to him form the day I found a $20 on the floor and, being the honest moron I am, handed it over to him and watched as he promptly put it in the Tip jar. They gave me a free cup of coffee, but only after I guilted them into it saying, "If I had known you were going to do that I would have kept it for myself." I also now repeatedly tell my mother that if they didn't make such great coffee I wouldn't buy anything from "this crook."

My new hours have not gone unnoticed, in fact, every morning for the past 3 weeks since my new hours started the deli guy has felt the need to say "early today" with raised eyebrows. The first two weeks I let it go, but last week I said, "early everyday, new hours," before walking out. Apparently that wasn't enough of a cue for him though, as he felt the need to say it again today, followed by, "You do good job now."


Naturally I walked out muttering colorful things, but under my breath because I can't deal with trying to find a new coffee place.

Oh and as I began writing this post and lifted the tab on my coffee lid, it spilled all over the new December page of my desk calendar. Happy Wednesday.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

New Music Please

Last night, despite my plan to get to bed immediately after watching my CW11 shows, I stayed up until after 11:00 trying to put together a new mix CD. Being as anal retentive as I am the amount of thought and effort that goes into burning a mix CD on my part is completely ridiculous, but nothing drives me nuts when listening to a perfectly good CD than a song that's out of order or one that I get sick of too quickly because the CD is then ruined for me. Irrational? Yes. Ridiculous? Sure. Bordering on insane? One of the many things about me.

My problem with last night's CD was a lack of selection. I was looking for happy tunes, but nothing holiday (one week after Thanksgiving is still a little early if you ask me). The songs can be mellow (I'm all about the singer/song writer and piano-rock tunes) or upbeat (the last few songs include Britney Spears and Lady Gaga), but mostly they have to be positive. The working title of the mix is "Can't Get me Down." And yes I have a "working title" for it.

So this is a call out to you, whoever you are reading this, to share your favorite tunes with me. Ones that always put a smile on your face and force you to sing along. Remind me of an oldie-but-goodie or hit me up with something you think no one else has probably heard before, I'm open to anything.

Thanks in advance.

Monday, December 1, 2008

Take Me Out to the Outlets

Sample sales are not the only place to find fabulous deals. On one of the most popular shopping weekends of the year the roomies and I ventured to the Tanger outlets in Riverhead and it was well worth the trip.

While we decided to skip the whole fiasco that is "Black Friday," we were feeling adventurous enough to hit the holiday shopping hot spot on Saturday AM. Upon our arrival we saw that the crowd there was no different than it is on any sunny Saturday. Maybe it's the recession, maybe it was the death and injury toll from the day before, but for whatever reason the outlets were averagely crowded.

The final count was as follows:
(1) Brown "going out" bag from Coach
Retail Price: $329.00
Sale price: $104.99
(1) Gunmetal all-purpose pocketbook from Cole Haan
Retail Price: $295.00
First Mark-down: $189.00
Second Mark-down (30% off): $132.97
Final Mark-down (Additional 30% for spending $200.00): $92.61
(1) Pair of champagne colored peep-toe pumps from Cole Haan
Retail Price:
First Mark-Down: $180.90
Second Mark-Down (Additional 50% off for Clearance): $90.45
Final Mark-down (Additional 30% for spending $200.00): $63.31

Another shopping success story. The outlets are clearly kicking the sales up a notch in order to keep people coming out this holiday season. I recommend you take advantage of these hard times if you can.

Don't Believe the Hype

Just I had anticipated, I missed nothing by not going back to my hometown for Thanksgiving Eve. My night in Queens was uneventful and the world still existed the following day, Turkeys and all.

Bell Blvd. on Thanksgiving Eve was sure to be packed, so we made it out early. The bar was charging a cover, the first time ever since I've been going there, but it was only $5. My friends and I stuck to our own insulated group for most of the evening and I couldn't have been happier.

Some friends from Grad School stopped by, but they're both pretty low key people and they managed to both let me be and lighten my mood at the same time. There's something special about people you can see out and not have to spend the whole night with, I find friends like that to be a comfort.

So the night passed by and began to blur as we all melded into a similar satisfied stupor. The funniest part of the night was probably the 21 year-old who tried to convince me that "5 years isn't that much of an age difference." Sorry kiddo, I've heard that one before. Besides, as most people who heard this story pointed out, if he's claiming 21 then he's probably 18 and I definitely don't need to get involved with that.

Younger boys seem to be my latest recurring problem and, while this is a serious improvement from the total jerk boys that seemed to seek me out months ago, I'm tired of feeling the need to ID a guy just to let him chat me up. It may be time to rethink my game plan, but if that's the extent of my Thanksgiving Eve drama this year, then I'm doing okay.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Thanksgiving Eve

So this whole week I've been feeling fairly indifferent about the unofficial drinking holiday that is Thanksgiving Eve. As a former president of the Thanksgiving Eve Fan Club this came as a surprise to many of my friends and family. While I typically find it enjoyable to put on my most recently purchased "favorite outfit" and make strained small talk with people I haven't seen in months, if not longer, this year I'm just not up for it.

Come to think of it, I wasn't up for it last year either, which was why I went out of town and spent the with my sister and brother-in-law and all of his friends from High School. This was when I realized that while I may be "over" the whole tradition (at least until I have major news I'd like to share again like an awesome new job or getting engaged), it's actually a lot of fun to watch.

You see, Thanksgiving Eve in a town where you don't know anyone is kind of like sitting in a lawn chair by yourself in the infield at Preakness. There's this whole event going on around you that is basically an excuse for everyone involved to get drunk and you just take it all in, observing the action. While I have nothing invested in either situation, it still provides amusement. Now if I could only wear sunglasses to the bar so peole wouldn't know I was staring...

In light of my mood this year, I thought I'd share this article that my roommate forwarded to me yesterday; partially because it's relevant and but mostly because it made me laugh, as articles from The Onion so often do.

Speaking of my roommates, the girls and I will be hosting our own pre-game party and then going out on Bell Blvd. with people we speak to on a regular basis.

Andy Warhol once said, "I'm the type who'd be happy not going anywhere as long as I was sure I knew exactly what was happening at the places I wasn't going to. I'm the type who'd like to sit home and watch every party that I'm invited to on a monitor in my bedroom."

It is in light of this mentality that I suggested the following form of entertainment for this evening: A Facebook Thanksgiving Eve session where we pull up the profiles of all the people we know from High School, and would see if we went out in our hometown and then talked about after we talked to them, and share whatever gossip we have on them collectively.

Needless to say I think Andy would have been a big fan of FB, I can just see the pop-art profile pic now.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Sample Sale Update

Yesterday I received an e-mail that all remaining inventory at the Theory sale has been marked down an additional 25% off. Go forth and shop people!

Cutting Teeth

So I know the expression is "like pulling teeth," but I think I'm going to throw a new one out there for you. How about, it's "like cutting teeth?"

I suggest this because while I have not had a tooth pulled since before I had braces, I seem to remember it being done under a local anesthetic by a professional who scheduled me for an appointment that I was in and out of in about an hour.

So while "pulling teeth" sounds painful, it's sort of antiquated considering the advances in dentistry over the years. Cutting a tooth on the other hand, well that's far more difficult.

It seems common practice for people to have their wisdom teeth pulled. I don't know much about it, other than the word "impacted" being thrown around, and I didn't think I'd have to until I started cutting a wisdom tooth at some point last year. My dentist assured me that as long as it continued to progressively emerge, I wouldn't have anything to worry about other than some slight discomfort. All the while his assistant was standing behind him saying, "Isn't that cute? She's cutting a tooth!" Yeah lady, cutting a tooth is just what men find adorable in a 25 year old woman.

So now it's a year later and we're approaching the only holiday all year where the main event is eating and my wisdom tooth has decided it's going to make the big push to join the rest of my teeth at the table. Perhaps it saw the turkey as incentive. Unfortunately, this means that I'm in a good deal of pain.

While I normally don't take anything, not even Advil, I'm seriously considering something stronger. The best way I can describe the pain is to say that it feels like someone is using an icepick to cut through your gums from the outside to make room for a fang that is emerging from underneath. Lovely.

Teeth are a sensitive subject for me, to the point where I can't watch American History X or any movie where dental work is involved, Little Shop of Horrors included. My normally high threshold for pain comes with the exception of any sort of oral discomfort.

So, while you are all enjoying delicious Thanksgiving meals, celebrating the folks who made it all possible, I'll be eating a gallon of my sisters sweet potato soup and drinking wine to numb the pain.

Anybody want to bring me butterscotch pudding?

Monday, November 24, 2008


Before I can even comment on the movie I need to touch on the ridiculousness of my fellow theater patrons. Going to see a hotly anticipated movie on opening night, I knew I had to be prepared. We showed up about 45 minutes before show time and some of the other girls were already there. They had saved seats for us, I think our group was about 12 in total, and shortly after we arrived the usher made an announcement that the show was sold out and there would be no seat-saving. The term alone conjures up images of school field trips and naturally caused us all to laugh a bit... at first.

All of a sudden we realized that two grown women behind us were calling the usher over. This poor girl, who was probably still in High School, went over to them and tried to mediate as the women accused younger girls of "saving seats" for people who were not in the theater yet. The usher announced that seats could be saved for people who were in the theater and at the concession stand or restroom. This started another round of jokes that the 3 people we were waiting for had stomach problems and/or were waiting for change at the concession stand (which was only partially a joke as I had to wait about 10 minutes for change of a hundred myself).

Then it started to get awkward. The women were insisting that the people for whom the seats were being saved were not there yet and so their claim to the seats was null and void. Then they sat down in the seats with the coats. I kid you not.
Shortly after they pull this little stunt, the true seat holders show up with their snacks and the women are forced to get up, although they do not do so quietly. All of this is going on a few rows behind us and several people in my party are too embarrassed to turn around to which I say, "If they're going to put on this much of a show, they can't expect me not to watch. Besides, I already have popcorn, I'm all set."

Now one of my friends has to go to the bathroom, so we begin joking that she'd better hurry or the women will sit in her seat. Meanwhile, the women are grabbing their teenage daughters from several rows ahead of us and as they walk toward the exit I hear one woman say to the usher "Well we'd better be let in first at the next show." My friend goes to the bathroom and comes back within a matter of moments. "The line was too long" she explains "but wait til you hear this, the women's daughters are all out there crying going 'Why did you get us kicked out of the movie?!'" We erupt in laughter and then go on to enjoy the movie.

My Review:
Okay, I went in with fairly low expectations and I was pleasantly surprised. The movie was good and they did a decent job with with screenplay, condensing 400 some-odd pages into 122 minutes. The things that bothered me the most were as follows:

1. Rosalie - In the books, she is supposed to be the most beautiful girl ever, blond and model-esque. The actress who plays her, Nikki Reed, is pretty, but she is (pretty obviously) naturally a brunette.

2. Jasper's Hair - Not sure why they decided to give Jasper this ridiculous mop of overly gelled blond hair, but it was a terrible decision. He looks ridiculous, making it very hard to take his character seriously. Also, Jasper is supposed to have this heightened ability to make everyone feel at ease, too bad he looked so tense the entire movie that I thought the actor who played him, Jackson Rathbone, surely had terrible gas pains throughout most of the filming. He is the newest vampire to go "vegetarian" so I get that he is supposed to look uncomfortable around Bella, but in the book he adjust and winds up liking her and in the movie this never happens.

3. Bella doesn't hatch the escape plan - In the book the whole thing is Bella's idea and in the movie she just kind of goes along with it. This might not seem like a big deal, but I think it is a key moment for Bella showing that she is really quite clever and it shows the Cullens that she is smart as well.

4. The Cullens wardrobe. The costume designer, Wendy Chuck, claims that she read the books in preparation for the job, but I'd like to know if she read the same book I did because the Cullens are supposed to be impeccably dressed. In my mind they were all dressed from head to toe in Prada. In the movie she puts Edward in a denim button-down. Seriously? Why don't you just have Old Navy sponsor the whole thing?

Bella she managed to get right, but the Cullens are supposed to be stylish. In the scene at their house she puts Rosalie in the most ridiculous stripper shoes and this horrible necklace. The closest Wendy Chuck gets to getting it right is the scene where they are introduced and the whole family is basically in white. It gives them a very mystical feel. Other than that I think she should have gone in a totally different direction.

Oh, there was one decision she made that I think was pure genius, putting Edward in a pair of Wayfarers in the scene where he and Bella basically debut as a couple in the parking lot. Robert Pattinson looked so cool here, I almost swooned.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Twilight Tonight

"When life offers you a dream so far beyond any of your expectations, it’s not reasonable to grieve when it comes to an end." -Bella Swan, Twilight*

In terms of blogging subjects, Twilight is the new Sarah Palin. Fortunately, Twighlight is a much less loaded topic. Well, I guess that depends on how die-hard the fan you are talking to is about the 4 book saga.

Personally, I have only read the first book in the series and I'm excited to read the second, but I knew I'd be going to see the movie tonight (my roommate got our tickets 3 weeks ago) and I decided to wait, lest I get confused. As it is I know I'm going to sit there nitpicking all of the inaccuracies. Hopefully I'll be able to restrain myself from thinking aloud.

The movie has been all over the entertainment news and I can't help but wonder what stylist is allowing Robert Pattinson to show up at everything looking so rumpled. Is it just me, or does anyone else have the uncontrollable urge to iron his clothes? He's not a big enough star to show up to every call looking like he slept in what he's wearing the night before.

Regardless, I'm really looking forward to seeing it and dissecting it over dinner with the girls. Hopefully I don't have to scold any chatty teenagers in the theater, or myself for that matter.

*Note: I chose this quote over "And so the lion fell in love with the lamb" because that one is great, but it's already getting played out. I can just see the t-shirts in Hot Topic now.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Sample Sale Success

Yesterday's sample sale was a success. While I did not get any pants, as I am in-between sizes right now, I had been ready for that. However, I did get the following fabulous items:

"Conie Strapless" dress in "Mica" Retail: $355.00 Sale $109.00
"Ardi Craze" dress in "Bright Violet" Retail: $315.00 Sale $109.00
"Amaya" Cashmere Sweater in "Bright Violet" Retail: $345.00 Sale $99.00

The dresses are both so chic and definitely fall into the "items I can wear forever" category. The "Conie" is a little more standard "me", very simple, could be worn with a leather jacket to do that whole toughening up of the sweet look thing, but the "Ardi Craze" is unlike anything I own. It's just such a party dress. It looks very 50's housewife gone glam. The color is just amazing and it has a patent belt in a deeper shade of blue. Normally I have a rule against buying anything that comes with a belt, but I decided to make an exception. It is Theory after all, typically I find that items that come with belts are of shoddy quality, and there pieces are so well made.

The "Amaya" is amazing and I feel very casual rocker chick in it. I immediately tried it on with jeans tucked into boots and a Swarovski pendent I have that has tiny blue crystals on it. It feels heavenly, but still manages to look stylish and neat, so I've decided to wear it to my sisters for Thanksgiving.

Of course when I got home I received an e-mail saying that they would be restocking the sale today and while that means that I may miss out on a few items, for those of you who are interested, it also means that there's more goods for all of you. Seeing as how I'm a big believer in karma, it's only fitting that they get more merchandise after I held out on the location from you guys. What goes around comes around in both fashion and life.

Theory, of course, is always in style.

SSS Sample Sales
261 W 36th Street
(between 7th & 8th Ave)
2nd Floor
New York, NY 10018

Sample Sale

"Shopping is my cardio." - Carrie Bradshaw

Not to worry, this is not your standard 'I heart S&TC' post. While I feel that the above quote is certainly true for me these days, something tells me that in order to get SJP's body she had to do something besides shopping to get those abs, my point is that shopping is indeed a work-out. Especially when you go to a sample sale.

This afternoon I have arranged to leave work early to attend one of my favorite sample sales: Theory.

Twice a year this place called Clothingline hosts a Theory sample sale. It's more of a warehouse sale, since actual samples are not in fact available, but it's still amazing prices on beautifully made clothes. To give you an idea of the savings in the spring I bought my interview suit, which retailed for around $600.00, for under $200.00.

The selection is plentiful, which you might not guess as you walk in the standard glass doors off of 36th St., and grouped by size. Typically they offer merchandise from the current season, which makes this sale even better than Century 21 or any of the other designer discount stores.

If you've never been to a sample sale before, I'll give you some tips, but I can't promise that the information I provide will really brace you for what you'll encounter. Basically; don't say I didn't warn you.

1. Know your size: Theory clothes are cut very well and if you know what size you are in one pair of their pants, then you know what size you are in all of them. Unfortunately, my bottom half is currently somewhere in between there 4 and 6 right now so, I'm going to have to try pants on anyway, but if you can avoid hitting the fitting room you can seriously cut down on time and frustration.

2. Attire: Wear an item you can take off in one fell swoop, like a trapeze dress and tights, and wear shoes that you can slip off without using your hands. Do not wear anything too warm. As I said before, this is exercises, you will sweat. You'll see why I suggest this outfit in the next section.

3. The Group Dressing Room: Behind a large black curtain fit to hide the great Oz lies the fitting room. Just a heads up; there is usually a line you'd normally find in the Meatpacking District on a Saturday Night to get in. Don't even think about cutting it, certainly not if I'm in line. Once inside, scan the space as quickly as possible for an open mirror/hanging rack to throw your stuff on and get to it (hence the outfit recommended above).
Each shopper is different; there are the people who are on a mission and don't even realize other shoppers are around them, there are the people who ask for your opinion and wind up flashing you as they switch between two tunics, and then there's the wild changer. Beware of this person, you may catch an elbow in the face.
If you too are modest for this set-up and don't know your size, all I can recommend is the exchange policy. You can exchange any item for the duration of the sale. Once it's over though, eBay is your best option.

4. The "That was my sweater" Argument: Possession is 10 Tenths of the law here people. It's like the Old West - stake your claim to what is rightfully yours, which counts as anything you have your hand on. If you put an item down, it is fair game. You can give dirty looks or even yell at people but, as I learned at one Kooba sale, you can tell a woman, "you obviously need that bag more than I do" and continue to compare her skin to the leather, but she'll still smile as she takes it up to the register.

5. The Buddy System: Normally I am a believer in the buddy system, on trips and at bars it is definitely the way to go. At a sample sale on the other hand, it's more like Lord of the Flies, every woman for herself (and her cashmere). If you must go with friends treat it like a fire drill and pick a meeting point for whenever you make it out. You do not have time to find your friend amongst the masses and ask her if this color makes you look washed out. Ask the girl behind you in the sweater line, she'll be more honest anyway.

So that's my advice and you can take it or leave it. As for the time/date/location of the sale, it's going on for the rest of the weekend so I'll post that information for the rest of you after I've gotten first dibs ;)

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

The Peep-Toe Bootie

As the cold weather comes into full effect I relish the opportunity to start wearing my many pairs of boots. Last season the bootie became popular and while, at first, I had flashbacks to that horrible 90's invention, the shoe-boot, the style eventually grew on me.
Unfortunately, just as I was scouting piperlime, zappos, and Nordstrom.com, for a bootie of my own, the mass market took this design to a whole new level with the peep-toe bootie. This is basically a boot with the front cut out to reveal several toes.
As someone who can't even stand toe cleavage (Sorry Christian Louboutin, you may be a genius, but toe cleavage is nasty), this design-flaw-turned-trend sends shivers down my spine, despite being covered in an adorable black wool Tocca dress.
Besides being hideous, these boots are completely impractical. People wear boots because it is cold out. Layering leather over your calf is as stylish as it is smart, keeping the leg clad in a fabric that looks both rich and neat and retaining body heat at the same time. A peep-toe bootie is the equivalent of Uggs with shorts and for the ladies who are willing to commit either of these fashion crimes, I can only tell you that you are one sadly misinformed fashion faux pas away from wearing Crocs.
As for those of you who own Crocs, well the peep-toe bootie would actually be a step up for you, so I recommend stopping at your local Steve Madden and seeing what they have in your size.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008


The original purpose of this blog was to regale readers with my humorous tales as I moved from the house I grew up in on Long Island to my first apartment, at the ripe old age of 26, into Queens with two friends who I've basically known since grade school.
It's now mid-November and I've been living there for over a month and, until today, all I had was a bunch of rough drafts. There's one where I gripe about the Mets, but that was only relevant for a few days and I didn't want to publish it until I felt it was up to my usual writing standards. A few other posts fell victim to this same idiotic mode of self-defeat, enhanced by procrastination, so now there they set in my drafts file, unpublished.
Last year I interned at a bridal magazine and obtained my first "real" clips (since employment postings love to tell me in their condescending tone how my bi-weekly opinions column from college simply doesn't count) as a writer and this year they were nice enough to let me write for them again.
Let me digress for a moment and say that I am a terrible procrastinator. It does not matter if I have two weeks or two months to do an assignment, I will still wait until 2 days before it's due to start it. In my defense, I always get my work done, it's just that I work best under pressure and for some odd reason, if it's not there naturally, I feel the need to self-inflict pressure to get the result that I want.
So as I sat procrastinating, watching every TV show I've missed over the past few weeks and combing Facebook for any new picture of anyone I've ever known, my thoughts wandered to this blog and I realized: It's a blog... why the heck am I procrastinating?!
Writing is my passion, but like all passions, I don't need to attack it with the severity of a Masters thesis. Passion projects should be fun and if you love it, then somehow it will, in some way, be good. Even if it's only to me.
So here's my blog. Some days I may just complain about traffic on the LIE or the commute to work or the guys I meet and then try to shake like a tick every weekend. It's not Hemingway, but, unfortunately, few things are and this isn't meant to be.

Thanks for reading...