Loathing, Aisle 3

I hate grocery shopping. I always have, and frankly, I'm convinced I always will. Last night, at my downtown Smith's Marketplace, was especially loathesome, because:

#5: It was ridiculously crowded for a Wednesday evening. That in itself is cause enough to hate the grocery store, but last night, that was just the tip of the iceberg. And, because it was crowded, I wanted to get out of there, so I forgot to get the body wash I went in there specifically for. Which leads me to...

#4: I went back in to get the body wash and there were not nearly enough checkers for how busy it was; and no matter how many self-check stations they have, there are never enough of those either! I just needed to get that one thing, and I didn't want to stand in line for another 10 minutes, so I just put it down, and walked out. I had to go across the street to Walgreen's. Grrr.

#3: The yucky couple who were shouting across the aisles to each other. He was standing in the potato chips, and she was in the cereal, and apparantly there was some concern about how much cereal they had in the house, and clearly the chips were too engrossing for him to leave, so they had their conversation at decibels inappropriate for anything other than a sporting event. Besides the fact, it was completely inane, and I felt like my IQ dropped several points just for hearing it.

#2: Just down from the cereal conversation debacle, I came across a really embarrassing display of failed flirting. I hate watching people flirt anyway, because it's awkward at the best of times. This was especially bad, though, because a.) the guy Girl #1 was trying to flirt with was obviously gay, and b.) the guy was with another girl who was obviously friends with Girl #1. Um....hello? Why would you flirt (or try to) with a guy a girlfriend introduces you to? What if they are together? That's just a bitchy thing to do. Plus, Girl #1 needs her gaydar tuned, 'cause, wow; it shouldn't have been hard to tell... This whole thing just made me uncomfortable and pissed -- I don't want to see crap like that while I'm buying peanut butter!

#1: Every other person in the damn store smelled like patchouli! This is not that big a deal, really, and I know that, but I HATE patchouli, especially when I can smell it everywhere. Plus, for those who don't know, I have the dual blessing/curse of an insane sense of smell. I nearly passed out after I passed one guy in particular (who was then everywhere, of course); he smelled like he had bathed in it -- which maybe he had. And, honestly, that's his business, until it gives me a headache; then it pisses me off.

So, I left Smith's feeling uncomfortable, stupid, and headachy, knowing I was going to have to make another stop for stupid soap, which has inspired me to make enough money someday to hire people to do that for me.


Pinup Girl of the Week

For those who may be wondering, I like pinup girls because they are fun, kind of flirty, definitely sexy, and unbelievably feminine. It's good to see women who look like WOMEN. This particular one comes courtesy of Edward Vargas.


"If Music Be the Food of Love..."

I've been feeling very musical lately and consequently, I've realized how much I've missed it. And, really, it's no wonder. Music can touch us in ways no other art form can and it can communicate on levels we mere mortals have yet to master. Music can turn us on, calm us down, wind us up, tell a story, make us laugh, make us cry, soothe us, entertain us; it can cross generational gaps, gender stereotypes, and county lines. Music can praise, inspire, and very often express our feelings more eloquently than we can -- as evidenced by the mix tape (or compilation CD) as the quintessential symbol of new love, old love, heartbreak, hate, angst, or any combination of the above. (SIDEBAR: I vastly prefer the idea of a tape to a CD. I mean, you really had to want that mixed tape: the two-tape deck, the stopping, starting, pausing, queuing the tape to just the right spot, the effort it took to make sure you had enough space between songs and at the beginning, and not too much space at the end of the tape...and all this AFTER you have selected the perfect play list and exact order. If you screwed that up, it could spell disaster for the whole project! The mix tape is truly a labor of love...) And, Music, more than any other medium, can allow us the complexity inherent in all individuals. Because of Music, you can dance giddily in your contact high at a Jack Johnson concert; or throw some elbows in a Goldfinger mosh pit; or scream like a little girl and sing yourself hoarse because you are in the same room as Dashboard Confessional. You can wallow in melancholy -- and LIKE it -- with Damien Rice, crank some John Denver as you drive through a Fall canyon, or make out during a jazz ensemble. Music lets you scat like a fool while you and Ella scrub the bathroom and it lets you worship at a Messiah sing-along. It makes you breathless during the Carmina Burana, or tap your toes with Jason Mraz. Music sears forever in your memory the first time you heard the Queen of the Night aria from "The Magic Flute" and the euphoria you felt the first time you hit a high A. It makes it okay to weep unabashedly when Mimi dies at the end of "La Boheme", and to let your heart break a little when you realize the Phantom has heard Christine's declarations of love to another. It doesn't tell anybody when you hit repeat so you can hear a particularly poignant set of lyrics again, and it keeps your sighs and sniffles to Itself. Music is the background for our lives, and thank the Muses for it. "...Play On!"


Home of the Brave

I think patriotism is a matter of choice: whether you have any, how much, etc. But, I also think it is difficult not to feel a certain surge of national pride while watching a fellow countryman compete against the world and emerge as the best of the best. At last count, the United States has 102 medals, including the record-breaking 8 medals in one Olympics won by Michael Phelps. While that is an AMAZING accomplishment, I think huge props should be given to his teammate Jason Lezak who swam the final leg of the last Men's 4x100 Relay as if demons of hell were chasing him, widening the gap between the US and Australia, and coming in first, well ahead of the other swimmers, helping Phelps to get that 8th medal. I was as proud of that while watching the race as I was of anything. I was also rooting for Dara Torres, the 41 year old American swimmer, whose Olympic career spans 20 years, and who has won 5 medals in the 2008 games alone. Our men's gymnastics team, taking bronze with 2 alternates, Gold medals for both the men's and women's Beach Volleyball pairs, a huge showing in the track and field events, and we still have a couple days to go. Congratulations to all our American athletes, and to all those who are there from all over the world, proving themselves among the best of the best!


My Favorite Things

So, I wasn't really sure about this one. I was torn between feeling I should share these things in the spirit of exposition (this is a new blog, after all), and feeling that I shouldn't for fear of overshare. Ultimately, I decided to share my favorite things, because they are my favorites, overshare be damned! (Although, this attitude may be why I am so bad at dating...) Thus, in no particular order: my Family, whimsy, Diet Coke, crossword puzzles, Yeats, lipstick, "Jesu, Joy of Man's Desiring", shoes, Atonement, and "Atonement", Pablo Neruda, Damien Rice, Pachabel's "Canon in D", easy companionship, e.e. cummings, faeries, The Outlander Series, Joshua Radin, fonts, the possibility of magic, Klimt, a fuzzy sweater, Dashboard Confessional, pedicures, Edna St. Vincent Millay, pandora.com, "Pride and Prejudice", pirates, Maeve Binchey, grammar humor, old friends, a good pen, hope, clean sheets, pork salad, wordle.net, Bach's "Air on the G String", crisp, Fall mornings, a safe embrace, "Law and Order: SVU", my iPod, "Starry Night", singing, the pleasure of familiarity, peanut M &M's, Debussy's "Claire de Lune", a good cry, inspiration, a new book, a good laugh, the smell of rain, a good kiss, The Poisonwood Bible, the Tudors, "CSI" reruns, sister time, the comfort of silence, Ding-Dongs, joy, a heated discussion, "Suite no. 1 in G Major", a full moon, pinup girls, and love.


Credit Where Credit is Due

The amazing drawing I have used for my header was done by Francesca Crescentini. You can visit her website at http://francescacrescentini.wordpress.com/


Puppy Love

As I mentioned in my first posting, I DO count my dog, Daisy, as family, and I do so despite the mocking I receive on multiple fronts. But, there are several reasons why Daisy is my baby girl: she offers absolutely unconditional love, without asking for much in return. As long as she has food, water, and her favorite chew toy, she's good. This makes her incredibly easy to be around; I don't know any human who is as forgiving or easy-going. We understand each other, and respect each others' space (I know that sounds odd, but if I don't bug her about her pillow under the bed, she doesn't pee all over my apartment in retribution...). Daisy is also an excellent listener, mostly because she can't talk back and/or offer "well-meaning" advice; she just sits there and watches me talk to her, and when I'm done, she just goes about her business. This is also good because I know she's keeping my secrets :) And, if I'm ever upset or sad, she instinctively knows, and comes to sit on my lap, which the dog lovers out there will understand, is an incredibly soothing thing. So, yes, I am one of "those" dog people, and I feel okay about it.


And so it Begins...

Don't get me wrong: I have nothing against blogs, and have enjoyed several of them on many an occasion. I just never figured myself for a blogger. I admit that I have harbored some preconceived notions about blogs; specifically that they are 1) a ranting/venting/soapboxing venue, 2) a showcase for one's family, or 3) the product of someone having way too much time on his or her hands. I didn't think I had anything to rant and/or vent about (umm...yeah...who was I kidding?), I don't have my own family, unless you count my dog, Daisy -- which I DO, btw -- and I really have plenty to do, and thus, no reason to blog. Then, I discovered that most of my friends have blogs which is how they keep in touch, and were privy to all kinds of fun information that I didn't have. I want to keep in touch with my friends, and let's be honest: rant a bit, and so, it begins...