Monday, January 30, 2006

Friday, January 27, 2006

it's from the biblioteca

'what's up j [woman from my spanish class]? hey, how's your new spanish class working out?'

'actually we were lucky because there's only about 3 of us and usually that's not enough to constitute a class, but they gave it to us because we've been there for several years and they consider us 'dedicated students.' '

'that's nice of them. hey, what have you got there?'

'oh, i checked out a few movies en espanol from the school's library.'

'al Sur de Granada? Granada! that's where i studied! i love granada. you'll have to tell me if it is any good.'

'hey you know what, i got three this time around, and there's no way i can watch three at once, why don't you borrow this one for the weekend? just give it back to me on monday.'

'seriously? what's it about? oh, look, it takes place in the alpujarras! it's beautiful there; we went hiking. wait a second... 'una atractiva y sensual muchacha que le fascina inmediatamente y con la que descubre la plenitud del amor fisico que su educacion victoriana nunca le permitio a imaginar.' ['an attractive and sensual girl who fascinates him immediately and with whom he discovers a plentitude of physical love that his victorian education never permitted him to imagine']... uh, what kind of movie is this?'

'hey cadiz, sounds like j's trying to give you some p*rn there. what's your problem, j? i usually have no problem watching three p*rnos all at once.'

'you're too much.'

Thursday, January 26, 2006

easy as apple pie



and my personal favorite, chiportal.

in this day and age, you can't get much more american than Chipotle, people. it's a fast-food chain mostly owned by McDonald's, for God sake. and there are zero silent letters or trick sounds.

Wednesday, January 25, 2006

don't mess with this dress

a while back, i got a call from the nice ex-boyfriend at 4 a.m. on a saturday night. i don't hear from him very often; we broke up a little after college and didn't talk for a few years. now it's mostly just birthday wishes, career updates and the occasional relationship advice. i was surprised to hear from him, but it was a welcome call because i had just gotten home from work and was already bored with the informercials that night. it seems nice-x went out west to meet up with one of his old roommates from college -- a rocket scientist who is trapped in the desert for his work on space stuff -- and they were drunkenly reminiscing about the good old days. i could hear the rocket scientist yelling, 'HIYYYYYYY CAAAADIZ!' and randomly adding his two-cents in the background.

the memory that made them think of me was of a time a bunch of us took a van down to florida for spring break. we stopped at a few places along the way, but the main destination was Daytona Beach. aside from its racecar fame, Daytona had been known for some crazy spring break activities back in the day. but by the time we made it down there, i think most of the u.s. collegiate debauchery had made its way to Cancun or other places. regardless, the nightlife was still catering to students, as evidenced by minivan cabs that would allow 21 people to crowd in at once (you think i'm kidding, but i counted) and all-you-can-drink for $20 specials.

our group consisted of nice-x, me, rocket scientist, his girlfriend and a few single friends of the boys. i guess hanging with couples made the singles want to do a little woman hunting. i have no problem with clubs, but these guys kept choosing ones with really crappy music and no dancing (perhaps factors in why they weren't finding any decent women). needless to say, rocket science gf and i were bored. so we drank. a lot.

alcohol tends to make me emotional. it's just that you never know which emotion is going to come out. that night i was a little annoyed that we were forced to hang out in a place that was offering a wet T-shirt contest (they claimed they didn't know before we had all paid cover), so i tried to hide my sulking with jack & coke. i had a nice buzz. and it was fantastic weather, so i was wearing a little dress, but by no means was i looking like a streetwalker. as we were walking out of the club and down the sidewalk, we passed a group of big, burly guys spilling out from some beer garden place who were blocking the path.

'excuse me.'

'mmmh! excuse me, girl.'

i wasn't feeling the way he held his beer out to the side, stepped back and looked me up and down with a red-riding-hood's-wolf stare. as i passed, i stopped, turned on my heel, put my hand on my hip, narrowed my eyes and shot him a nasty look.

'WHAT did you say to me? uh uh, no you DID-N'T.'

from there the rest is a little fuzzy, but i'm told i just went off on this guy, telling him that if he wanted to cause trouble he could just bring it, because you know what, i could take him AND all his friends. i do remember looking back at nice-x -- who was about fifteen feet behind me -- to see sheer terror on his face. i guess i had picked a fight with a good portion of the defensive line of the Purdue football team, and as athletic as nice-x is, one long-distance track star cannot possibly take on that kind of brawn. especially when his lady was running her mouth as much as i was. i guess nice-x talked me out of my oh-yes-i-CAN-kick-your-ass-let's-go plan and got me out of there. honestly, those guys were probably more amused by me than anything else, but it was almost worth it to see nice-x so freaked out. to this day he talks about that day as though he had narrowly escaped some kind of horrible accident.

'remember that time in daytona when you went all attitude and almost got me beaten to a bloody pulp by the Purdue football team?'

'uh, attitude?'

'you know, you were moving your head from side to side on your neck and shaking your finger at that guy.'


'oh, like rosie perez?'

'yeah, that's it. dude, those guys coulda killed me.'


'whatever. you know i could have taken them. who said anything about needing you?'

'you know, you're lucky i got you away from them. that was trouble.'


thank you, nice-x, for rescuing me that night. and for being an all-around good guy. you're going to make some girl really happy one day. happy birthday.

Saturday, January 21, 2006

innocence lost

'yeah, i went out and bought 'Wedding Crashers.' '

'really? you liked it that much, eh? did you watch it already?'

'yeah, with mom.'

'you made OUR MOTHER watch that dirty-ass movie?'

'yeah, it was the 'uncorked' version, too. don't worry, i fast-forwarded all the bad parts.'

'so you showed her about 10 minutes of it, then?'

'pretty much. yeah, you know that one part where they're in the church and vince vaughn tells owen wilson about how he got 'eye-f*cked' by some girl?'


'yeah, i didn't see that one coming quick enough and mom was like, 'what does that mean?'

'you're going to hell.'

Friday, January 20, 2006

never go to the grocery when you're hungry

the other night i got off work early and i had a taste for a rich, chocolatey brownie. usually, i'd just skip it and go on, but i figured, hey, i've got some extra time, maybe i'll hit the grocery store.

i was catching up with my friend on the phone about all the stuff i'd missed these last couple of weekends i had been working. there's no one in the grocery store at 11 p.m., so i was walking up and down the aisles, chatting away about boys, weddings, drama, work. i told her about how i'm trying to start bringing my lunch because there's no reason i shouldn't buy yogurt in bulk for 80 cents instead of paying $1.49 for it in the cafeteria. i meant to pick up a few things, like sandwich supplies, a couple frozen meals for when i am running late, some cans of juice. but as i walked around i became entranced by the deals. for some reason, i was under the impression that when it says 'Ten for $10.00' i have no choice but to buy ten.

i guess i was so distracted by the conversation that i wasn't paying attention to how much stuff i had. soon enough, my cart was overflowing. i had to hang up with her so i could concentrate on getting it all to the checkout. and despite having a savings card, i managed to rack up $130.00 worth of 'lunch items.'

and it all started because of that damn two-dollar brownie. but i have no regrets. that thing was really good.

Tuesday, January 17, 2006

last meal

they executed a 76-year-old man today in california. he was blind, diabetic and in a wheelchair. for his last meal, the guy ordered fried chicken, buffalo steak, whole milk, ice cream and sugar-free pecan pie.

am i the only one who's wondering why, if you're on your way to your death, you wouldn't just splurge on a sugary pie?

Monday, January 16, 2006

this stuff makes me cringe

when your best friend, who is famous for her thoughtful, lengthy holiday card missives, tries to pass off a picture of her and her husband as a christmas card without even addressing you.

when your coworker invites the person hired to replace you to your going away party.

when you snap whenever spoken to and want to continue to be nocturnal because then you can have free reign of the remote control.

when something goes sorta right, but then something goes really wrong and you are sad and mad and hope to be glad, but you can't tell anyone around and you have no minutes so you can't call anyone either.

when you've been waiting 11 months to take the one week you get off a year, and see that they've forgotten they granted it and scheduled you anyway.

having to go home and go back to work

pumpkin guts in the garbage disposal that turn the dinner you had planned into in-n-out and a movie

when one of your best friends calls you sobbing and you're 2,000 miles away. again. timing really freaking sucks.

when you're going out to dinner with your boyfriend, his two sisters and the one sister's boyfriend, and you're looking to the other outsider to give you a little backup in keeping the conversation flowing and he says nothing for FORTY-FIVE MINUTES AT A TIME. so you have to resort to talking about the job that you're really starting to loathe. sigh.

finding out that the competition got a permanent leg up on you. then having to admit to yourself that you probably didn't put as forth as much effort as was needed to really be a contender. and then you wonder why. and then you continue to struggle to care.

when your brother calls from teh emergency room. again

feeling as if you're a hamster in a wheel-- no matter how good your cardiovascular health is, you're not actually getting anywhere

coming back to reality

feeling 'off'

having no motivation whatsoever, even when your rent is on the line.

hoping that a feeling will get you through the next five months.

being late for something he's been looking forward to for months.

working more than 40 hours a week (not including the 15 hours for commuting) and not getting a lunch break. and then having to see others complain about 55 minutes not being enough to shop with during their break.

people who are MORONS. people who think "fox news is still decent" despite the fact that they blatantly censor anything that is remotely critical of the government because the guy who runs it is related to the president. and thinking that getting the news should make you "feel at ease." why don't you pick up a Nancy Drew book with a nice tidy ending if you want that, because in reality, a WHOLE BUNCH OF PEOPLE ARE DYING and we'd better wake up and DO SOMETHING ABOUT IT.

people who go on and on about how bad the media is on their blogs without for one SECOND taking the time to think about what the hell it TAKES to report a fair story, newspaper or otherwise, and realize that at the end of the day EVERYONE is human and that there is no other profession in this world that gets as much crap blamed on them as the media. give up your life, happiness, time, family. get doors slammed in your face, phones hung up on you, people yell at you all because you think that something that you're working so hard for might just HELP SOMEBODY or shed light on some injustice.

when you become terrified your life is on track to resemble a tv sitcom, but instead of shrugging your shoulders with a smile at the foibles of your partner, you fear you will accidentally strangle him in rage because you're not as good as the people on tv.

stupid shoes that make you wish your feet could be temporarily amputated to take a break from the pain

when the heat index is 115 degrees and you're wearing triple-ply satin

trying to hold up/adjust/not to trip on a cathedral train

missing exits

getting people together for pictures; like herding drunken cats

wedding speeches scheduled for the end of the night

when no one will dance and you realize the videographer has just captured you, solo on the floor for the last 1/2 hour because the guests are so lame

when the airconditioning breaks down

when the best man can't keep his hands to himself

when the only thing that's open is mcdonalds

removing liquid eyeliner

missing exits. again.

flight delays


commenters who only leave smiley faces. that's ALL you could think of to say? or is it just a quick and easy cut-and-paste ploy to attract more traffic to your site? eiw.

when someone you've thought you had a lot in common with for decades insinuates, in no uncertain terms, that due to the fact that you don't get up an hour early every day to paint your face like a clown somehow makes you an alien with whom it is embarrassing to be seen in public.

when someone i love is sad and hurting and i can't do a single thing about it

when annoying memories come up for no reason whatsoever

having told everyone you know about your weekend plans, only to scrap said itinerary to sleep in and then feeling the need to come up with an elaborate excuse for why you didn't do what you'd spent the last 2 weeks prattling on about ad nauseam

when several people close to you call at precisely the time when they know very well that you are unable to take their calls

creepy ghost towns

having to follow someone going considerably below the speed limit for more than ten miles with no outlet for passing their sorry caboose

when your coworker likens a phrase used at your weekly office meeting to the final scene in 'requiem for a dream' and you're doing your best to erase the connection that has now been burned upon your retinas and will force you to stifle uncontrollable nervous laughter whenever you hear your boss mention the 'end-to-end project' again.

finally grasping just how addicted you are to something/one, when you look at the clock for the fiftieth time today and realize you have only gone without it/them for 22 hours. and it's killing you.

complex crochet baby blanket patterns that boggle your mind but look so damn precious.

when you realize you can't stand your new phone because you're a crotchety old lady who can't get used to new technology

when you're not quite slick enough to get to the check before your companions, who headed the waiter off at the pass

when you're working on no sleep and trying to carry too many things at once and then when your phone falls to its death on the concrete steps, you are too stunned to comprehend it.

people who aren't considerate to the fact that them waking you up to tell you something that can wait can seriously mess up your day.

when chocolate cake doesn't even make you feel better.

going to a place where everyone else makes you feel like an animal at the zoo.

the fact that a simple three-letter word can make you want to cry. even after all this time.

waffling. and being aware of it.

when you are convinced some actor looks just like someone you know, but can't get anyone to agree more than a pitiful, 'um, maybe a little from the side...?'

having your heart set on lasagna, but then realizing it's going to be more than 2 hours before its done

coming up with a great birthday gift idea only to get a call from the recipient, who's at the store buying it for herself.

not being in tune enough to know what you want, not being strong enough to try and find out and resenting the people who care enough to tell it to you straight up

when your gd left eyelid will not, for the love of heaven, stop TWITCHING

being the one to tell someone you care about something that hurts them now but hopefully will make them stronger for later. but wanting to vomit anyway because it sickens you so much even though it's the truth.

hanging out with the old crew and being mad at the world for being unable to be able to dance with them every week because you have to work to pay the bills.

having stayed up all night for four nights and not being able to sleep

when every POSSIBLE thing that can go wrong does, standing in the way of your completing a very simple task and turning it into the worst nightmare of the last five years

spending the whole day kicking yourself for putting off something yesterday that you're now forced to do today. sigh.

when you know it is IMPERATIVE you do something, and you sit down, materials in hand and are physically unable to begin. maybe out of fear of failure, maybe out of laziness, but somehow you manage to come up with an excuse that makes lying in your bed and finishing a gripping novel instead somehow okay.

realizing you'd better bring your A game more than ever, b/c there are several dozen people you need to watch out for

not being sure. about anything. not having any one stable thing to hold onto.

deliverypeople who promise 'same-day service' and take 5 days to get you your stuff

coming to the conclusion that somehow, it really is your fault that this keeps happening

dragging yourself to the city only to get there and wait on everyone else

being seated right next to the door at a busy restaurant when it's 0 degrees and blustery outside

finding out someone who treated you like crap is treating someone else like a queen

not realizing how sad you are until starting to cry when the parking lot guy is just trying to do his job

still wanting to believe even though every bullshit-detecting alarm in your gut is going off

the 'i told you so' tone even without the 'i told you so' words

waking up early

really bad a.m. traffic

missing planes

not being able to shower after traveling

making my poor dad get out of bed to come get me at work at 3 a.m. because i didn't have time to get my own car

feeling like a chump

counting the seconds till you can leave work

running out of cough drops

realizing you've contibuted to the wave of influenza sweeping across the office like a plague when the person who sits next to you -- the only one who had managed to avoid it -- goes home sick.

not being able to make up my mind

people who cannot grasp the concept of driving in the rain

getting sick

having to get up at 3:30 a.m. to drive through dense fog to sit in a dungeon.

waking up in a fantastic mood, telling everyone you know that because you woke up in a great mood something horrible is going to happen in the hopes that if you say that, said horrible thing won't happen, only to have horrible things happen. but at least you know you were right.

hauling your ass out of bed extra early to make sure you're on time, forgetting it's Martin Luther King, Jr. Day and no one's at work but you so that there isn't much traffic and even less work to do

only having one day off for a couple weeks, and not even being able to blame anyone else but myself for volunteering

showing up to a party, all proud of your fuzzy pink off-the-shoulder sweater, only to see somebody else with the same one in purple

stupid league bowling, which forces 8 cars to trek into the city in mad traffic THE ONE TIME we actually get to hang out anywhere close to my hood, just to get to the only alley that has open bowling on a saturday night

having to hit snooze on your biological clock every ten minutes while helping your friend's kid bowl on the bumper lanes

wracking your brain for the perfect gift for a 23-28-year-old stylish woman and only having 2 hours before work to find it.

boys in the underwear store

people not telling you that you've messed up until after it's way too late to do anything to fix it

the end of spanish class :(

not making it to the airport till 15 minutes before a flight

not having enough hours in the day to fully take advantage of 900 channels and ON DEMAND cable

MTV en espanol playing crap, most of which is in English, on the one weekend when you can actually watch it

not locating the potato peeler until after dicing 2 big potatoes into tiny pieces

wasting precious new year's festivity time trolling the city FOR FREAKING PARKING and having to wish loved ones in a driveway with the hazards on, only to spend ANOTHER 45 minutes after getting back to the homestead. and all this was well before the year had begun. here's hoping that 2006 has a better parking forecast.

this stuff makes me smile

never having to be snuck up on by the boss who travels like a shark again

never having to do tedious busywork to pass the time again

never having to work with that one nasty person again

when you know you've made somebody's day

when, for the past year and contrary to what your loved ones tell you, you're convinced you're absolutely no good at what you do and that everyone is out to get you, you have one 45-min conversation that turns that around. except the out to get you part. because paranoia never rests.

even though it took YEARS, hearing that in the end, i was right about him all along. damn straight, i was.

commitments that will only make me stronger

a *real* date. in person.

proving to any naysayers that i CAN, in fact accomplish what i set out to do

finishing a book in one planeride. even if it was plagiarized

talking monkeys

come-from-behind victories!

the magical music store

catching the game AND making it to the airport

garibaldi, the 'goldfish of the ocean'

unique jewelry


when you actually like all of the items included in your airplane snackpack

when you swipe the in-flight magazine because you know your boyfriend would appreciate one of the articles and when you give it to him, he says he read part of that on the way to see you last and was hoping to get another look at it one day.

hot and sour soup

when you fear the worst out loud but hope for the best inside

when bad music can save the day

when your normally stoic kid brother tells you he loves you

when you've found someone who actually sort of appreciates your offkey renditions of bad '80s tv commercial jingles.

when you think your birthday is really going to suck and are all set to wallow in the fact that you'd be trapped in the dungeon, your supersweet boyfriend calls to ask you to pick him up from the airport! and when you find out that your family members had tried to help, too, it's all the better. there's nothing like being loved on your birthday.

when you and all (3) of your blood relatives on this continent gather together for a few tv-, radio-, telephone-less rounds of card games full of laughter and accusations of cheating, even if it's just for a few hours after which life interrupts and everyone goes a separate way.

getting gussied up (even though you'll never admit it)

pulling a speech out of nowhere and knowing that your procrastinated, adrenaline-fueled excuse for behavior has still got it. sort of.

a really good band

having someone at your side who actually isn't selfish

weddings that are OVER

smiling to yourself when it's 100 degrees outside because you don't wear much makeup so it's not melting off your face like other people who turn into a jabba-the-hut mess when they step out on the sidewalk.

oldschool music stores
the history channel
cozy dining

knowing that i was right all along

finally getting a reprieve from uncertainty, if only just for a moment

a gorgeous and slightly breezy 20-block walk in downtown chicago

pizza delivery and bad cable movies

when people step out of their comfort zone to try something just because they know it'll make you happy.

weekend getaways

the 'crackhouse' that is the fabric store

realizing that 'shop around the corner,' 'good old summertime,' 'you've got mail' are essentially the same movie -- and that you've loved two of them and have already added the third to netflix because you're sure you'll love it just as much.

realizing that this is the day you don't have to make a 36-mile commute for the first time in something like 17 days

not having to enforce the forty-minute rule when a movie you think is really going to suck turns out to be not so bad after all

reliving old times with my roomie over oreos/milk and E! True Hollywood Story: Desperate Housewives

encyclopedia brown-- he's such a clever guy

forgetting to move your car and fearing it has been taken to the tow-yard of hell, only to discover that it's there, sitting pretty, AND NO TICKET! :)

feeling that silly, giddy camaraderie over tagine food, belly dancing and board games with some of your bestest pals

breaking 100 points at bowling and having ice cream cake

video messages

people sacrificing their sleep to entertain me.

the amazing race. it's freaking awesome.

when whatever it is that was out of joint for a month pops back into place and though you were functioning before, things are right again.

when the special thing you saw in somebody many months ago comes through-- in a box full of styrofoam peanuts-- to prove that you weren't completely off after all.

non-junk mail. even if it has a cat on it.

watching parents-to-be glow with the anticipation of their bundle of joy

being taken in a cab to where you had parked your car, even though it's just three blocks away, just to make sure you don't get jumped.

saying what you need to say and having it heard.

confirmation that yes, your mother ALWAYS knows the right thing to say to make you feel better. at least for a little while, anyway.

seeing awesome dancing, hanging at a diner and laughing harder than you have in months and doing a little dancing yourself

getting sweated by foreigners

getting a photocopy in the mail of a list your college roommate wrote years ago of 21 reasons why she thought you are awesome that she didn't end up giving you on your 21st birthday. for no reason at all, besides the fact that she found it at her mom's house. and it arrives the last day of one of the worst weeks of your life to cheer you up.

the love and generosity of great friends who will shelter you from the worst of storms

a poetry-bearing puppy

a tiny light at the end of a very long tunnel; at least it's a direction. sort of.

sleeping in

cruising down division with two of your best friends, all three singing along to madonna's 'sorry' at the top of their lungs for three different reasons, and nobody feels silly.

having a much needed day off

the dungeon maintenance man who has been working there nearly as long as you've been alive, hinting that he might want to set you up with his pimped-out-hydraulic-car-driving, supermarket-managing son, whose car may be used in a movie it's so sweet

when the annoying person who was waiting in line behind you to check in ends up sitting really far away from you on the plane

when people at work tell you they've missed you after five days off

when, even after all these years, your daddy still gets you beautiful flowers and candy on valentine's day, despite being only his second-best girl. and knowing that they're on the coffee table with your name on them before you even get home two days after the occasion

your pops being a good sport about getting up at 3 a.m. to drive 31 miles in crappy weather to come get you from work

cruising on the PCH

somehow entrancing the hostperson to let us cut in front of everyone in line at the restaurant and avoid a 1 1/2 hour wait because he can tell just how much i don't want to be forced to eat at Baja Fresh on valentine's day

1900 songs. all in a row.

homemade breakfast

sleeping in

85-degree weather when it's snowing at home

waking up to french toast in the morning

a country boy who introduces himself by his full name because 'it's only proper' and then apologizes for dropping the f-bomb with, 'sorry, i'm southern; i cuss.'

someone who will come to your room to see if you're dead when they hear you hacking up part of your lung at 5 a.m.

a group of people you've known for almost 20 years, with whom you can still have a fabulous time trapped in a small room with nothing but yourselves to entertain each other.

thinking you're having a good chat with someone and then looking at the clock to realize it's been nearly seven hours

coworkers who wait around while you sort out a big mess just because they want you to hang out afterward

getting to work so early that you have time for a toasted caprese (!)panini and a chat with a good friend

causing a ruckus with 20 ladies you haven't been able to see in a really long time in the private party room of a steakhouse and then being called 'hotties' as you and three of them are walking through the restaurant to the restroom

finding out that the gift you found is not only so cool you get one for yourself, but it's also on sale so you can get her the matching totebag, too -- which is sweet because when you swing by again 2 days later, they're totally sold out

when the dungeon security guard tells the shuttle to wait because he saw you pull into the parking lot and knows full well there are no spots any closer than a football field's distance away around the corner and that you really need to make the shuttle so you won't be late. and you're running between parked cars, even though you saw the shuttle pull out of the parking spot and you know you've probably missed it and will have to walk really far and be tired and late and sweaty, but then you emerge to see him grinning at you with a knowing smile in front of the shuttle, which is waiting just for you, and you thank God for this guy and that the jerk from the main office security doesn't work over here.

words of wisdom disguised as a grammar lesson

hanging out till the very last possible second

not having to move the car

figuring out how to work a foreign shower's hot/cold water

Sunday, January 15, 2006

there's a reason it's called victoria's SECRET

victoria's secret, a women's undergarment store known for its catalogues and supermodels, was having a phenomenal sale this weekend. i'm not sure if the electric charge of having expensive merchandise marked down to semi-affordable ranges was what made people crazy, but there was definitely something in the air.

disturbing incident #1: my biggest pet peeve

i'm sorry, but boys should NOT be allowed in the ladies lingerie store! notice how i say boys. thoughtful significant others, who are sincerely shopping for their women (okay, let's face it, for themselves) in a sincere, respectful manner? A-okay in my book. what i CANNOT tolerate is when guys come in with their girlfriends, put their nasty paws all over everything while making lewd gestures and oh-yeah noises not unlike those of beavis and butthead and look around lasciviously at other women in the store. uh, NO. ladies! LEAVE YOUR STUPID, DROOLY BOYFRIENDS IN RADIO SHACK OR FOOTLOCKER SO I CAN BUY MY UNDIES IN PEACE! seriously, being in a store with these clowns automatically taints every item in the store and i must leave at once. it makes the idea of washing everything before wear even more essential.

disturbing incident #2: dumps like a truck truck truck

part of the phenomenal sale included bins of tangled underwear in all kinds of shapes in colors, simply sorted by size. and in the very center of the store, there was a table solely devoted to thongs, around which there was a bit of commotion. i was all the way over in the non-undies part of the store, but there was such a ruckus, i had to look over. two middle-aged women had taken it upon themselves to rifle through a mountain of floss, holding up items of curiosity such as a lovely fuschia number with sequins or the black with rhinestones or the teal with tassles. seriously, their picks were sort of raunchy and silly, and half the time they weren't sure which end was up.

'hey linda! how about this one?'
'ooh! definitely! it's got a charm on it!'
'no, no, this one is BETTER! it has BEADS!'

the rest of us were pretending we didn't hear them for the first couple of minutes, but then caught each other looking over at them with a shrug, as if to say, 'yeah, SOMEbody's a little excited about those.' it was a little uncomfortable in there until another lady asked them what all the fuss was about and they said they were buying a gag gift for their friend's fortieth birthday. at that point, everyone started chiming in with their advice on picks. what's up with older women and their underwear?

disturbing incident #3: the miseducation of harry potter

after i made my way over to the clothing section, i noticed a woman rifling through the contents of that same mountain of thongs. she was concentrating very hard, and taking care to dig all the way to the bottom, just so she wouldn't miss anything. she'd untangle one, hold it up, examine it from every angle and pause to decide. she was meticulous and thorough, which are great qualities to have when you're shopping. but not when you're in an underwear store with your ten-year-old son.

'can we go now?'
'huh? well, you had your chance to go with Erin, but you didn't want to.'
'i thought you'd be faster. you know she always takes FOREVER. geez, do you have to look at every single one?'
'well, honey, it's just that things in this store are normally very expensive, so when they go on sale, people...' (lapses into concentration)
'they want to make the most of it, right?'

thing is, the kid was not too whiny, quietly standing by her, and -- most importantly -- he did not touch anything. however, he was paying very close attention to what was in front of him, namely the items being scrutinized by the woman. that in itself was troubling, because what little kid wants to watch his mother hold up lacy panties? eiw. not images i'd want of my parent. however, i think i was more upset than either one of them was. in fact, i'm still shuddering thinking about it.

disturbing incident #4: can i see your i.d.?

standing in line to check out was pretty interesting people-watching wise. there were older women in pairs, mom-and-daughter teams, giggly college students and women with their babies. but as i got closer to the front, i saw a group of two girls and a guy, making their purchase. the one girl was very cute and stylin with her shiny lipgloss and bedazzled jeans. she was all of fifteen, tops. she looked over her shoulder at the boy, who was no more than 92 pounds in his little alligator-icon collar shirt (with the collar down, thank god) and his Hollister shopping bag. now i could be wrong -- i had already been pretty traumatized -- when i thought i heard her say, 'you sure you really like it?' and he nodded yes. WHAT? these are CHILDREN!!! i highly doubt she was referring to a perfume she just bought, or that they're really brother and sister who were purchasing a gift for a family member. the cheesy grins and impatient feet-shuffling was all about the preteenage we're-'going out'-but-don't-actually-go-anywhere-mall-group-outing-pseudo-date. CHILDREN, I SAY! WHAT IS THE WORLD COMING TO?

i paid for my stuff and got the hell out of there as soon as i possibly could. yeah, i know. i belong in a different era. like a prudish, english, victorian one. regardless, i think it's going to be awhile till i go in there again. thank goodness they don't have sales very often.

Saturday, January 14, 2006

don't F with the man with the yellow hat

i can't begin to describe how disappointed and annoyed i am that they're making a movie version of 'Curious George.'

Friday, January 13, 2006

in for the long haul

'whatcha doin'?'

'watching the 'Lost' i taped. that Mr. Eko is a badass. why are you up so late, mister?'

'i'm just getting off work.'

'dude, it's 1 a.m. even i've been home for almost an hour. what time did you start today?'

'9 a.m. what? it's no big surprise; i worked from 8:30 to 2 a.m. yesterday and till 1 the night before that.'

'what the hell are they trying to do to you?'

'we have a big project going on right now. it's only for a couple weeks, but seriously, i'm at the end of my rope.'


'can you please tell me, why does my schedule suck so much?

'uh, have you forgotten who you're speaking to? i believe in the last six days i've worked 4-midnight, 2-10p, 3-11p and 5:30-2a. come to think of it, my life evaporated as soon as i started this job.'

'okay, you do have it pretty bad. anyway, if i could just stick it out another 2 years, i can get promoted and make 30% more in salary. but godddd, it's gonna be rough.'

'that sounds pretty damn nice to me. you can do it. just don't give yourself an ulcer, heart attack or get hooked on uppers to get the job done.'

'we'll have to see about that. wait a second. okay, i'm putting up with this crap schedule for the sweet monetary payoff. what the hell are you in it for?'

'good question.'

Wednesday, January 11, 2006

if i were packing, i'd be rich

i am a frequent flyer at the cafeteria on the first floor of my office building.

so frequent, in fact, that i'm on a first-name basis with the staff down there, and if i don't visit at least once a day, Michael will ask me where i've been hiding. they have pretty healthy stuff, too like hummus and pita or a wonton salad that has tangerines and chicken. and fancy health juice.

but today i came to realize just how expensive it is when i brought a ham sandwich on a croissant, a yoplait yogurt and a mega berry juice. more than $11. dude, i could have gotten SO much more of a better meal for that, were i not too lazy to actually leave the building.

damn, convenience is pricey. i need to start bringing my lunch.

Sunday, January 08, 2006

strung up

my mother told me she was going out shopping today. for panties.

it seems one of her good friends is turning fifty years old and a bunch of them are going to get up early and hang fifty undergarments -- in various sizes -- all over the woman's front yard. i think the sign they're working on will say something like, 'happy birthday, we support you!' my mom is usually the epitome of proper decorum (she said she certainly wasn't going to be donating her own undies). outwardly i was shocked that she's let the junior-high humor of her coworkers influence her.

but inside i was thinking to myself, 'damn, i hope i have that much fun when i'm fifty.'

Saturday, January 07, 2006

the grand tour

so i was supposed to work with the new guy today. friday's a late night, so i was actually sort of excited to have company out here in the dungeon -- especially during that long stretch until the last reports trickle in around 2 a.m. i even sort of arranged for him to have a tour. you know, "there's a wall. and the other desk. oh, there's the printer. and oooh, another wall..." no, seriously, i was going to take him to the cafeteria and show him the back parking lot. dude, i was so excited, i even got in early so i could have the work set up for him properly to learn.

bah, the guy called in sick. so here i am. alone with my thoughts. again.


Friday, January 06, 2006

more than conjugation

i've been taking a spanish class before work since august. mostly because:

a) it's a better way to spend the day than sleeping till 2 p.m. after having stayed up all night doing ridiculous things like painting my toenails
b) it gets me out of the house and away from the television
c) i have to walk more than fifteen blocks from where i park -- more exercise than i've been getting as of late
d) maybe i'd get to know my coworkers
e) maybe i'd meet cool people
f) i'd get to relive the glory days of school when i left homework till the last minute and challenged myself to completing it at a stoplight, on a bus or walking up the stairs, not with accuracy but completion in mind (still got it!)
g) maybe i wouldn't use up my daytime cellular minutes harassing my friends/family within the first three days of my billing cycle and be forced to live as a hermit the rest of the month anymore
h) one day i couldn't remember the second-person present subjunctive for poner was for about three hours, which really pissed me off
i) i tried to read this book, 'el escandalo,' that i had bought in Granada solely because it was written by Pedro Antonio de Alarcon -- a man after whom the major strip we partied on every night for the entire semester i was there was named -- and didn't get very far
j) i don't completely feel like myself unless i'm in some kind of class
k) it was in the office conference room
l) the company was paying

even though i'm still up at all hours wasting time, i did in fact meet cool people. i got to know two coworkers better. i completed my homework on the shuttlebus when i managed to catch it, however it didn't work as well when i had to walk. i was never on time (sometimes an hour late), but hardly missed a class. i ended up using more daytime minutes because it was more daytime hours i was awake. i definitely brushed up on grammar and have come to the realization that as 'escandaloso' as Alarcon's book is, the main reason i couldn't get through it was because it's boring.

today was the last day of class. i was sad. because, despite all the trouble it was getting out of bed on tuesdays and thursdays and however much i would struggle and make up broke-ass pretend spanish words (usually something in english with -ar or -er and a question mark slopped onto the end), i really had a great time. the profesora is a fiesty bolivian mamma who has lived on four continents and will probably have been to the rest by the end of 2006. she believes you need to ditch the book to really learn the language and is extremely supersitious. she tells it like it is in that straightforward, you-need-to-hear-it way not unlike my own goldenhearted mother, especially when i was the only one there. needless to say, i learned a whole lot more than just grammar in that class. case in point:

'forgive my bluntness, cadiz, but you remind me so much of my daughter, so i feel like i can be direct. in my era, girls were to be all pure and virgin when we got married because that's in our religion and our culture. but i consider myself feministic, and i say that's not correct. you tell me, if you're not happy in the bed, can you really consider yourself happy in your marriage? but they didn't tell you about that back then. what if there was better out there and you just didn't know for your whole life? this is what i say: if you are mature and find a person you love from your heart, you should know what you're getting. i'm telling you, cadiz, you take that boy straight to a hotel and find out!'

yeah, that sure as hell wasn't in the book.

oh, and the second-person present subjunctive for poner is pongas.