Friday, May 28, 2010
Whether it be my clothes, actions, or decisions, they've been described as "together" more than once. And in some ways, maybe it's true. I know myself and my goals, plans, and beliefs. But 99% of the time I am most decidedly NOT together. And I never know what to say when that "t" word is thrown out. Except to immediately start listing the litany of reasons why this is laughable and pretty much unbelievable.
Like when I realize there is a stain on the hoodie worn to work. Or when a co-worker introduces me to her family and my shoe comes off as I get out of my chair. Yes, I met this person's family with one shoe off. While wearing a Beatles t-shirt. And earlier this week, wearing a new top and jacket, the tags still firmly attached to each as I went about my day. (Thankfully, they were tucked in and no one saw.)
That is not "together."
I have bad days. Actually, bad weeks. An entire month of bad. And even an entire semester once. Some days I just can't seem to shake life and get it together. Some days are so un-together there is no choice but to give up, come home, put on my pajamas, and get in bed.
Some days my room looks like this:
No one is as "together" as they think they are or may seem to others. No one.
Thursday, May 27, 2010
Just to prove that this foray into domesticity, or even maturity, is only temporary, this morning I supplemented my breakfast of pineapple and apple with a bag of peanut butter M&Ms. You can put the girl in the kitchen department but you can't make the girl know what to do in it.
Tuesday, May 25, 2010
Thanks to my supreme Google-fu and an alarming amount of fellow 'net denizens with the same problem, the solution was found, implemented, and Francisco is back in service. (Until the next time he decides to act out like the surly toddler he is.) Of course now, at this point, there is no energy or brainpower left to intelligently blog so I resort to the writer's crutch: bullet points.
- Since writing about Anne Shirley, one of her blossoms has died. Hoping that's just the lifespan of an amaryllis and not a statement on my sickly green thumb.
- Last weekend, I tried on more than 30 items of clothing, and bought none. This weekend, a trip to Georgetown and trying on about 10 outfits, ended empty-handed. Sunday's trip to Target only set me back $14. What has happened to my shopping-fu?!
- Sunday the roommate and I went to brunch with/exclusively for bottomless mimosas. So many years wasted because of a disdain for orange juice; if only I had realized my glass was just missing the champagne.
- It's season finale time. "30 Rock" was amazing and the summer is going to be long and dry without it. "How I Met Your Mother" is pissing me off and it better stop being lame. Or else I'll still keep watching it but not happily.
- The oil spill in the Gulf is breaking my heart. I think every person that ever uttered or even thought the words "drill, baby, drill" should have to personally clean off a bird or sop up some of the mess from those wetlands.
Wednesday, May 19, 2010
One of my nieces gave me the amaryllis bulb for Christmas. I planted the bulb a few weeks ago, not expecting much. All the other plants came to me as fully formed, which is good, because I have never been able to grow something from a seed. (Thus why I am still holding on to the edelweiss seeds from my Salzburg trip five years ago.)
But bulbs are different, clearly, as this is what now graces my lovely window scene:
Her name is Anne Shirley. It was going to be Marilla from "Anne of Greene Gables" because the flower name made me think of it, but Anne was a fiery little redhead, and so are the flowers.
It makes me smile every time I walk by. Now, maybe, I can try my hand at those edelweiss seeds.
Monday, May 17, 2010
(Note: I know I shouldn't have taken the picture, but I did. And I would never dream of taking one during a show or doing any other un-couth theatre behavior. Promise.)
LaBute is not for everyone but I love his work. His plays tend to be a commentary on some societal issue and he uses powerful language, biting dialogue, and even physical violence to get his point across. (If I recall correctly the first line of this play, or maybe second, was fucker.) Both of the plays I've seen and the few I've read make me quite uncomfortable, but that's the point, and it makes me think, too.
And to end on a happy note, the tiramisu on a doily I had before the play. It wasn't the best, but not the worst, either.
Saturday, May 15, 2010
After the embassies came the National Cathedral. After a long uphill walk in the blazing sun and the realization that I had not had a meal in almost 24 hours, I hightailed it to the food section. Where long lines at every turn led me to promptly backtrack to the over-priced bratwurst stand, the same over-priced bratwurst stand I ate at last year, and probably for the same reason. But oh my was it good.
I then got my cash and debit card ready as I meandered through the stands. The main draw of the flower mart, of course, are the plants and flowers for sale. I browsed them but just ended up with some fake flowers and a pretty vase. The main draw for me was my favorite booth from last year, a lavender farm from Pennsylvania. I love lavender and they have it all: honey spreads, sachets, cat toys, and my favorite, tea! They were in the same spot as last year and I hit them first.
I then just wandered around, looking more than buying. Spent awhile in the book tent where I managed to not buy anything. Bought a wonderful strawberry and pineapple smoothie and continued browsing as the brain freeze sat in. Then I made my way to the main goal of the visit: the bell tower climb.
First and foremost, I am not good with heights. I've discovered over the years that I'm not so much afraid of them, it's more that my body and my head just can't handle them. I have vertigo and perception issues that make me light-headed and weak, which is pretty much the last thing you want as you ascend 300+ stairs in a centuries-old bell tower.
But the way I see it, I have been to the top of St. Paul's in London and St. Peter's in the Vatican, and I thought I owed it to my own country to go the top of one of its cathedrals. And so I did.
It got a bit scary at times. I had trouble breathing and I got really shaky, but I gripped the railings/walls and kept my eyes focused on the person in front of me, and made it to the top. And oh so very glad I did. From the views of Washington to the humongous bells to the bell ringers making their music, it was worth every rickety step. (I uploaded a video of the bells here. They aren't ringing the bells I walked by, but some different ones that we can't see.)
On the way down they led us through a Cathedral balcony. I went inside a few months ago for an orchestra concert, but this was different. With a stunning view of the soaring ceilings and stained glass, especially the rose window, I just couldn't have asked for more.
Friday, May 14, 2010
It has been a crazy week and so I'm just now getting to writing about my busy last weekend before this one kicks into gear.
Of course I go weeks with nothing to do and nowhere to be, and then all of a sudden everything I want to do happens the same week. Such was Saturday, with open houses for the European Union embassies and the annual flower mart at the National Cathedral. I've done the embassy thing the past two years and the flower mart last year. I love them both and look forward to them every year. But this year I decided I wanted to focus more on the flower mart, so I only did one embassy: Great Britain.
Now, it might seem a little silly to get so excited to see the embassy of a country I have lived in and travelled all around, but trust me, it's not. And considering that it has been an unbelievable three years since I last set foot on precious English soil, it felt right being surrounded by jolly old England/Scotland/Wales again.
The main draw was to see the ambassador's gardens, which were lovely, of course. There was a real English telephone booth and a band playing British invasion songs. They also had food, with bread pudding and bangers and mash on the menu. Not to mention the whiskey samples which, oddly enough, was the same whiskey whose distillery I toured when I went to Scotland.
I walked around and just took it all in. I am happy with my life right now and have no regrets because I feel that my life will take me back to Britain one day. And until then I'll get my fixes however I can.
Sunday, May 9, 2010
And here are 10 reasons why.
1. She knows what I need. Case in point: the blanket in this picture, which is pressed to my mouth as I write this. (Albeit a little worse for wear.) She never tried to Mr. Mom me and take it away and whenever I'd lose it she'd let me sleep with her satin robe. And when I went to Europe the first time and was afraid to take the blanket with me, she let me cut up part of the robe.
3. Things unspoken. She knows when I am upset and am holding back tears, even on the phone. And I know that as soon as she asks me if I'm fine, that I'm not, but that I will be.
6. Looking beyond. She never let the fact that we lived in a small town limit us. From trips to Raleigh to shop and trips to Cary to the movies, to the viewpoints and beliefs we were exposed to. But...
7. Appreciation of place. ...she taught us to love our town and our home. And home is always home and and I can't imagine growing up anywhere else or having some place else to go back to.
9. Tar Heel Bred. Even though she's not a "native," she loves our state and defends it more than anyone. Though neither of us can claim the "Tar Heel born part," both can surely claim the "Tar Heel bred." She knows every time I come home I need a little bit of Chapel Hill. And she gets teary-eyed when we leave it, too.
10. This. It just wouldn't be anything without her.
Wednesday, May 5, 2010
use the good china.
Don't you worry, Dove, I will.
Tuesday, May 4, 2010
I just finished watching the 2008 concert film/documentary "Shine a Light" about The Rolling Stones and directed by Martin Scorsese. I am not a huge Stones fan and only have a few of their songs, but I absolutely love Scorsese and all the previews of the movie looked interesting. In addition to all of the beautifully shot and performed songs, there was also some interesting behind-the-scenes footage and some even more interesting old interview clips of the band.
But of course, since this is me and I am anything but normal, I think what I will remember most about the movie is the following exchange between Scorsese and some set designer or assistant.
Assistant: If Mick stands in front of the light for more than 18 seconds, he'll burn.
Scorsese: What do you mean "burn"?
Assistant: He'll burn up. He'll get too hot.
Scorsese: You mean, like flames?
Assistant: He might catch on fire.
Scorsese: We can't do that. We cannot burn Mick Jagger. Very simple.
Scorsese didn't seem alarmed, he wasn't smirking, and there was no devilish twinkle in his eye. It was just said very simply with the perfect amount of incredulity. Incredulous that he even had to clarify that Jagger could not be set aflame. And yet also incredulous that he couldn't use the light he wanted to make the film exactly as he wanted.
Perhaps some deeper meaning is buried in this exchange, some play on the title, "shine a light." But I'm tired. And I really do think Scorsese just didn't see setting fire to a rock and roll legend as conducive to his art.
Pure genius, that man.