Sunday, July 31, 2005


When I was 4½ we moved to Inwood, a neighborhood at the northernmost part of Manhattan. The end of the A-train line was at the corner near our building.

The public library was in walking distance of our apartment. The children's library was on the second floor. Susan Pope was the librarian, the first friend I made for myself. (My parents and sister made friends with her too.) We saw her outside of the library too, meeting at the Cloisters or going to her apartment. Her daughter, Tina, was a few years older than me and she had a Bon Jovi poster in her bedroom.

I remember we stayed there once over New Year's Eve, after we'd moved upstate. It was the first year that I made a conscious choice not to stay up till midnight, and slept through to the next year. When you're young, it's astonishing to realize that you can do that. I don't know if it was the same visit, but I remember watching The King And I at her place, too.

Susan and my mom saw each other every year until my mom moved far away. Susan wrote to me when I was in college. Last year she came to Los Angeles to visit her sister and her niece. While she was here she came to see me. She'd had cancer for a couple of years at that point, and was tinier than I remembered. She'd stopped smoking, but I hadn't yet. We had a nice visit. She was sorry she couldn't come to my wedding, and sent a generous gift card.

A few weeks ago I was thinking that I should call her and let her know I'd quit smoking. I thought she'd be happy about it. I hadn't gotten around to it when my mom called me, worried because she couldn't reach Susan. I gave her Susan's sister's phone number. But I knew.

Susan Pope died January first of this year. She was not quite sixty.

There is a nice obituary here at The Daily Star. She is three down on the page.

Saturday, July 30, 2005

In keeping with a theme (Really Cool Link)

Astronomy Picture of the Day

I have almost definitely linked to this before. It is one of those sites that I forget about for months at a time but when I do remember, it never disappoints.

Really Cool Link

NPR : Timeline: Women in Space

Friday, July 29, 2005

This sums up today.

Not so much a bad day as... unproductive.

Thursday, July 28, 2005

What a day.

This morning my father told me that my uncle Joe has had arthritis most of his life and has symptoms nearly identical to mine.

This afternoon my father called me back to tell me to get my ass to a chiropractor/doctor/whomever I choose and to shut up, he would pay for it, and a bottle of the good stuff too. (Only, my father doesn't talk like that. But that was the basic gist.)

This evening I went to Trader Joe's (for booze and calcium pills) and the cashier, a lad named Scott, asked me if I'd had a good day. When I answered him honestly, he seemed genuinely concerned and sympathetic.

Some days, I like people.

But seriously, arthritis? I'M TWENTY-SEVEN YEARS OLD.

The narcissism is pretty overwhelming.

I've been complaining for some time that books don't have Ctrl-F. (I noticed that Valerie has the same problem. Great minds.)

So I'm talking to John and he's saying that he was feeling guilty for not doing research for this thing he's writing, but then he realized that he has been doing research, in bed. And I say, "That's not called research," and he can't believe he walked into that one. So he explains that he's reading this book (musicals of the 30s, I think) at bedtime and taking notes.

And then I say - I swear to god - "I wish there was some way you could bookmark the relevant pages for later."

Well, OK, I didn't actually say it. I thought it for a split second and then laughed at myself and told John anyway. And he made fun of me and threatened to put it on his blog and I said no, it's going on mine, and he said he only quotes himself on his blog anyway, and then he said the line I put as my subject and this sentence needs to end now.

Wednesday, July 27, 2005

Who are you? (fun with viewer stats)

Who reads my blog from Texas A&M? None of my Texan friends are in college! Unless Liz works there. Liz, do you work at Texas A&M? DO YOU?

Tuesday, July 26, 2005

I wish I lived in Texas.

The Lord of the Rings: motion picture trilogy: Exhibition Information

Monday, July 25, 2005

By the way...

I am shocked at how few of you expressed interest in seeing me naked to decide for yourselves whether I have gotten fat. Either I am losing my touch or my friends are more sensitive than I give them credit for.


This morning I drove Will to work; I ran an errand for Will's assistant, who also functions as the office manager; I got our car a long-overdue oil change; and then I had lunch with Will. When I finished eating, I stood the most excruciating pain of my life. Somehow, despite the fact that I stood up like a totally normal person, I threw my hip out. Out of socket, to be more specific - at least, that is what I think happened. It's hard to say as I haven't been to see anyone yet. Of course, if that is the problem, it seems to be back in the damn socket so I don't know why it hurts so badly. I've alternately applied heat and cold and am trying to decide on a course of action.

Will, my sainted husband, put me into the car, did the grocery shopping, and took me home. He did not, as I assumed was his plan, return to work, but stayed here for me to bark orders at from the sofa.

If this physical pain is here to distract me from the depression, I would like to assure whoever is in charge that I WAS JUST KIDDING I AM REALLY VERY HAPPY THANK YOU.

Saturday, July 23, 2005

no subject

The last 24 hours have been really rough on me. If you came here last night between about 7:30 and whatever time I drunkenly turned off my computer, you may have seen a short post in which I explained that we were going to the wrap party for the Tenacious D movie and I was feeling fat and ugly and didn't want to go. Comments were turned off and I decided that I didn't want the post there at all without further context.

I've gained between 10 and 15 pounds since we quit smoking nine and a half weeks ago. Totally normal, right? But on my frame (very small) it's a lot. And yes, it's given me fabulously large bosoms. But the bulk of the weight is on my hips and thighs. It has gotten to the point where I only have one pair of pants that fit. Wait, two. Regardless, I feel fat. I look better naked than clothed, which is inconvenient if I want to leave the house. It doesn't help that my skin has been a mess lately, too.

My self-esteem (self image?) has gone through the floor. I feel wretched about my appearance. I can't even do yoga, which allegedly helps with problems like fatness and depression, because all of the floorspace in our living room is taken up by two gigantic couches. We can't afford to move right now, so I'm looking for a job. But I just started looking and so far I've only applied for the one, which was a sham to begin with since they hired from within and that always means that the interviews were a "formality." And while I'm not too disappointed about the job itself, I am concerned that if I can't get a job whose requirements literally matched my resume word-for-word, it seems unlikely that I can get any other job.

So I changed out of my pretty dress that made me look fat and into jeans, which were at least less offensive in that area, and a top that ensures that anyone looking at me sees pretty much nothing but my tits. I am shallow. Shut up.

And we went to the party (Jason Segel was there and he looks all grown up!) and it was OK. It was in this funny little night club sort of place in Silver Lake with loud music and dizzying lighting and good Asian-ish food (fusion?) and an open bar which I proceeded to drain. I think I had six vodka-cranberries over the course of about two hours. Possibly only one hour. I really have no idea, because I got totally wasted and forgot that I was miserable. We hung out with Rob Schrab (I am name dropping but whatever, he created Scud the Disposable Assassin!) and his girlfriend Kay. It was nice. When I was utterly and completely shitfaced I insisted that Will take me home and...none of your business.

So we got in the car, where I lost it. I went from giddy to hysterics in about point five seconds. According to Will, I was crying because Kay isn't my friend. I don't know. I may have also been bemoaning my general uselessness. It wasn't pretty, even from my hazy drunken perception.

I woke up this morning at about 5:00 with a jumping stomach and slept fitfully until about 7:00 when I puked my guts out. That hasn't happened since the infamous Andrew Bird Incident. And this time I didn't even tell anyone famous that I love him. (If I'd known I was going to blow chunks I totally would have accosted Nick Andopolis.) Anyway, I slept another hour or so, thought I was going to puke again, cried a little because I didn't want to puke, fell back to sleep, and woke up around ten starving. Will had gone out for supplies and he made me some bread and butter and gave me a glass of juice. I have spent the rest of the day alternately eating, sleeping, and being depressed.

The best part of all this is that apparently my coping mechanism for depression is to take it out on Will. He, of course, has never been depressed and doesn't know how to handle it. So I am depressed, I am a raging bitch about it, and my partner is trying his best but sometimes he is so unsympathetic that I want to strangle him.

Comments are tentatively on. Use your brain. I am letting you in on some very personal stuff. And remember that I can have you killed. I know ninjas.

Thursday, July 21, 2005

Context is for suckers. - dinosaur comics - July 21st 2005

We all need to get on the same page here.

Briefly, because I have a raging headache.

I was propelled off the couch, where I was languishing away reading My Family and Other Animals, by the urge to check whether we own any more Gerald Durrell books. (We have one.) While I was up here I thought I'd just really quickly peek at a blog or two, and I glanced at Will's (so you see it doesn't even count) and he said something about "Quentin the Chin" and I remembered that I am really irritated with the over-use of "The Chin" to describe any old person with a big chin. Namely Quentin Tarantino and Bruce Campbell. On Sunday evening Dave Davis (who I can't possibly refer to by anything but his full name) used the phrase to refer to Bruce and I thought he meant QT which is as embarrassing as it gets for a Bruce licker like me.

SO. I propose that we come to some sort of agreement. I'm thinking that since "BC" already has a very widely-used meaning, we use "The Chin" for Bruce Campbell and "QT," which has gone out of vogue (as in "on the QT and very hush-hush"), for Quentin Tarantino.

Who's with me?

(By the way, I found a very nice website, World Wide Words, while double-checking the origin of "on the QT.")


It is about 500 degrees fahrenheit in my loft office. I am DYING.

Wednesday, July 20, 2005

The Devil's Rejects

That's weird...

I just had a tremendous itch on my belly. I scratched it, which was quite gratifying. Then I realized that the itchy spot was a chicken pox scar from 18 years ago. Weird.

Anything odd or out of the ordinary happen to you lot recently?

This is funny. Because it's true.

noirbettie is poisonous! Induce vomitting if ingested.

Tuesday, July 19, 2005

And they're off.

I don't know how many pages till I return, as I daren't turn to the last page, but I'll be back when year 6 is over.
11:56pm - done. Exhausted. Get back to you later.

Still no Potter.

I think he is bringing home a copy this evening.

I am pretty sure I have not yet been spoiled. I plan to be offline from the time I start reading till I'm done, except possibly to check email.

I'm trying to remember how long the last two took to read. I'm thinking about a day and a half. Not because I read slow but because those books are really fucking heavy and I need frequent breaks for stretching.

Monday, July 18, 2005

Harry Potter and my awesome husband

I mentioned to Will at about 8:30 this evening that I will be requiring the new Harry Potter book one of these days. He jumped up and asked if I wanted to go get it right that minute. I said tomorrow would be just fine but I didn't want to wait much longer else I'd have to disconnect the internet. I fear spoilers.

It should be mentioned that he stayed home sick today (with the Dave Davis 24 hr bug) and was really in no condition to take me to the bookstore. So sweet of him, wasn't it?

Is anybody in there?

Am I overly sensitive, or is no one commenting? Or both?


They hired internally.

Oddly, I am not as depressed as I expected to be. In fact, I am totally fine. Though it may be that I am feeling the effects of last night's margaritas a bit late. Mmmm, margaritas.

Sunday, July 17, 2005

You only love me when I'm leaving.

The beauty of art has made me cry twice.

The first time was in October of 2001. I was at an event sponsored by my place of employ, USA Today, at the Art Institute of Chicago. They had a special traveling exhibit at the time: Van Gogh + Gauguin. I spent most of the evening at the check-in table and then trying not to appear too much like a starving person at the buffet. I was wearing my fabulous pink Jackie O suit. Eventually I was given leave to go through the exhibit. I wandered through, reading the details of Vincent and Paul's lives, watching as their artistic styles developed and changed, and enjoying being away from the control freak perfectionist temp who was helping me run things. Then I rounded a corner and found myself staring at the two Starry Night paintings. The lesser-known painting from before Paul left him and the famous swirly crazy one. Next to each other at eye level. And I stood there, frozen, for ten minutes, in tears. I didn't see any of the remainder of the exhibit on my way out.

Last night I had a slightly less profound experience at The Getty, this time not with visual art but with music. One of my very favorite bands on earth, DeVotchKa, played the Balkan Beats concert, part of the museum's Summer Sessions. (You can listen to DeVotchKa mp3s here.) They played my favorite song, "Queen of the Surface Streets" (QuickTime link). It was more gorgeous even than the recorded version, which actually means that they achieved the impossible. And it made me cry.

Vegan bliss!

Er, I am not a vegan. But I have given up dairy temporarily. And Will made popcorn last night. And I wanted some. And although I find the sounds-disgusting combination of Bragg and nutritional yeast quite tasty on popcorn, I don't have either. So I improvised.

Sprinkle olive oil over popcorn, toss, then sprinkle paprika + salt and toss again. Eat. Be blissful.

Saturday, July 16, 2005

An enigma burrito. With a side of mystery. Hold the cheese.

No, seriously, hold this cheese for me.

I have this problem where I can't stand anything but a happy ending. Joan Aiken's book about a minor character from Emma (I can't remember the girl's name offhand) DOES NOT have a happy ending. If you were wondering. I read it 12 years ago and I am still upset. I threw the book across the room. I would have destroyed it but it belonged to the library and even though I would have loved to protect other unsuspecting readers from my fate I just have too much respect for libraries. Anyway, "doing the right thing" when it means leaving the person you love just makes me sick. When I hear about people breaking up I often feel nauseated and slightly hysterical. I know from experience that a break-up can be survived (and usually is). But I also got my sweetheart back. (None of the other break-ups count, especially since I initiated most of them.)

Um, I forgot where I was going with this. I saved it as a draft and now my brain is elsewhere.

Friday, July 15, 2005

Extremely important question.

(I totally stole this from Scott's archives.)

Danny, Donnie, Jon, Jordan, or Joey? PICK ONLY ONE. Explain if you feel like it.

I wonder why the wonder falls on me.

We finished watching Wonderfalls last night. Oddly, right around the end I got something in my eye. [spoiler - swipe to view]I really didn't think he would come back.[end spoiler]

Did you know that Wonderfalls was #1 in its time slot? All of its time slots? (Not #1 overall, but rather #1 with its target audience, which somehow seems even better to me.) I hate Fox so much.

Thursday, July 14, 2005

Further update.

I think it went well. They seem to think I might be too "senior" for the position. I was too chicken to ask whether this meant that they had a maximum hiring age or I am overqualified. If it is the latter, as I suspect, then I hope you will all join me in laughing hysterically until we fall on the floor. If it is the former, I'll be in the bathroom, slathering on anti-wrinkle creams and crying.

I won't know anything until next week, so of course I expect to be a total wreck through the weekend. Yay.

Wednesday, July 13, 2005

Job update.

Interview tomorrow at 11:45 PDT. Please continue sending mojo, it has worked wonders thus far.

But who likes me that much?

The above is the question I asked myself (out loud, no less) after opening the package that arrived this afternoon. You see, it contained the Indiana Jones box set, which I have been trying to talk myself into buying for ages. And now I don't have to, because Heath and Jess did it for me.

It's been a really good birthday. I had a great day at the zoo, we had an awesome vacation, and I got some really sweet gifts.

For posterity:

from Mom: yoga book, yoga DVD, Artist's Way

from Lou: kitchen stuff

from the in-laws: really nice clothes, prompting me to gnash my teeth and hollar about how on earth this woman could be so clueless about me but always pick out the perfect top for me.

from Laurie (mouse): Last Minute Knitted Gifts

from Jenn: Pie cookbook

from John: autographed Lauren Bacall autobiography that he somehow managed to keep secret since, like, MARCH.

from Eaf and Grr: Indy

from Will: Wonderfalls and Nero Wolfe season two on DVD (the former was a surprise). Also citrine pendant, which made me cry because the only jewelry he's bought me to date was wedding-related, plus a bracelet his sister picked out which I can't wear because I am really weird about stuff on my wrists.

Note to self: today would be a good time to start those thank you notes. Don't let this be like your wedding. (We sent out the last batch of cards last week.)


I have just applied for a job that I want very badly but do not know whether it is available any longer or, if it is, whether I am anything close to what they are looking for.

This is the first 'proper' (read: office) job I have applied for in years.

Kindly send your best mojo this way. I am a nervous wreck.

Nevermind Sicily and Montenegro.

I want to be Greek. Macedonian also perfectly acceptable.

We had the best weekend ever. Sadly we did not get to see everyone we hoped to, but on the plus side Sunday was a perfect day so I will not complain.

More about our trip later when I am not freaking out (see post regarding job application).

Best T-shirt Ever.

Mighty Girl

Wednesday, July 06, 2005

Heh-heh. Whoops.

So sorry - I've been off the floor for some time, but was still reeling from the experience of Batman Begins and so forgot to let you all know. Forgive me, Red darling!

Today I got blisters walking around at the zoo. There was lots of monkeys.

And now I'm going to run off again, as we're booked on a 10:00 flight to Chicago and I still need to pack.

Happy Chompo to me!

EDIT: If this is the most recent entry you can see, REFRESH. Shift + F5.

Saturday, July 02, 2005


Saw Batman Begins. Am still on floor eight hours later.