Monday, January 30, 2006

The family goes to NYC.

Holy crap! It was great! It was actually a ton of fun. My parents came to Philly Fri night to pick up Josh and me. We got dinner here first at the awesome brunch place, Sabrina's. Yes, dinner at a brunch place. But they also have dinner stuff. Very good. And brunch stuff all day long like this killer carmelized banana and farmer cheese-stuffed challah French toast. D-lish!

Afterwards we headed toward Trenton to stay in a pretty craptastic Holiday Inn. Thankfully, I had earplugs to drown out my mothers snores. I swear, I have found the best earplugs in the world. They make my mom's out-of-control snores seem like soft purring. Josh doesn't do earplugs and didn't sleep fantastically, but, nonetheless, we had a good start to the day and made the early train. So we got to NY and it was cool. Even after two hip replacements, my mom was a walking superstar! We got lunch ...

and then saw Spamalot. It was so frickin' hilarious. I LOVED Hank Azaria and David Hyde Pearce. I am a little sad that there's no more Tim Curry in it. Love that man. But my fave was the guy who played the "I'm not dead yet" guy and the historian and the "princess" trapped in the tower. He was the best!

Look! I'm in Spamalot!

Afterwards we had dinner with my British cousin Mafew who just started grad school at NYU in the fall. Ok. His name is really Mathew and he even now goes by "Mat" but since the bulk of my interactions with him were before we were age 8, it was always pronounced "Mafew" and Mafew he will forever be to me. Here is photographic evidence of his existence.

It was so great and my parents had such a nice time that I think we might even try it again some day. My parents were so cutely thankful to us for making them try something new and different. It was so sweet!

Oh, and congrats to my dad on his last day of work today!!! After over 35 years at Dupont. Jeesh. I cannot even begin to imagine.

Friday, January 27, 2006

You learn something new every day.

Today: Eddy Grant, the same guy who sings "Electric Avenue," which I always loved (especially the video where he gets up off the chair and just falls into the water! That was always cool but kinda scary to me), sings "Romancing the Stone." You know, from the movie Romancing the Stone. I love you, Pandora!

Yesterday: I know way more about the internet than a lot of people, for example, Josh's Judge who couldn't grasp the concept that one's email address isn't connected to a particular computer and can be checked from multiple locations. Ok, I know that's not impressive of me to know that. But I also know, for sure, that there are many, many people out there who know WAY more about all of this stuff than me. (R-w-S, I am definitely thinking about you here). And any kids I may have will some day be making fun of me like I'm making fun of The Judge and have made fun of my own parents and the in-laws many a time.

Wednesday: that's when I learned about Robert DeNiro's waiting, right?

Tuesday: One can exfoliate their hair. Did you know that? Well, my colorist told me so. She said she hasn't actually shampooed her head in over a month! Instead, every other day she conditions and really massages her scalp with the conditioner. To me, a month might be excessive, but I may be coming around. I did the conditioning/exfoliation thing the last two days and was in love with my hair. I washed it today even though I didn't really feel like I needed to b/c of timing with my trip, etc.

So, since I already learned my lesson for the day, can I just go back to bed?

Update: Good thing I didn't go back to bed! Today I also learned a new way to save memory while running SAS. Exciting, I know. I also learned about Schlock Rock thanks to an Eraser gal and Dorotha. Expect one of their greatest hits at the Kid on the 2nd! And also learned that Sheena Easton's song is not, in fact, "Sugar Waltz," but is, instead, "Sugar Walls." Oh. Not that that makes any more sense to me. I'm actually a little nervous to look up the lyrics. Prince-related folk tend to be pervy! Ok. I did it. I was right. Ewww! Sugar Waltz was so much more innocent!! Maybe...Anyway, I love that song, and someone should sing that at the Kid. JJ? Ang? Connie? Or did we already try to do that at some point and they don't have it?

Thursday, January 26, 2006

New York, New York!

I think I've mentioned previously somewhere that Josh and I are taking my parents to see Spamalot. And the weekend is just about upon us...Josh and I bought the tix last spring/summer when we were high on life and for some insane reason thought my parents might enjoy a little Monty Python-inspired fun and frivolity in NYC. But then when we told my parents (my mom in particular) it was all dread and doom. And Josh and I thought, What have we done?! And both my sisters and their husbands were like, What were you thinking?! Neither my mom or dad has been in NY in about 40 years. Seriously. And my mom can barely handle Philly. In fact, she has been here to visit twice (both times since I moved) even though she and my dad have lived 45 minutes away from the city for 40+ years. Maybe, just maybe I am slightly exaggerate-y. I guess I don't know much about their lives before I was born, but during my lifetime...not a lot of time was spent in Philly.

So just the logistics of how we get to NY have been ridiculous. After much discussion, we're actually going to spend the night Fri and Sat in a hotel in Trenton. Yes, Trenton. Whatever makes the parents happy. And means my mom might not have to get up quite as early.

So last night, we were tying up lose ends/making final plans, and I asked my mom, "So, are you okay? Are you nervous?"
She said, "What? What are you talking about?"
"Oh, I thought you were overwhelmed about going to NY, all the people, etc."
"What?" she responded. "I've been to NY before."
"Um. Okay."

So now the only things to worry about are what to wear (for me! Oh, and I have to dress Josh too) and figure out if I have a purse big enough to carry my mom's "sit-upon"* (which is featured prominently in my wedding video during my parents' announced entrance to the reception) or else she'll carry it in a Strawbridge's (Hecht's/Foley's to other parts of the world, soon to be Macy's, I guess) carrier bag, which is classier than a plastic bag, she tells me. Yes, it is. But I think I might just have the perfect purse for it!

*That's what my mom calls her seat cushion that she carries everywhere with her b/c of hip/butt soreness. It's one of those donut-y ones. She jazzed it up by covering it with pretty fabric (very handy mother!). Actually, it's usually my dad's job to carry the thing around.

Wednesday, January 25, 2006

I thought I knew you, 80s music.

I'm listening to Pandora and Bananarama comes on. I think, cool, I know Sarah, Siobhan, and Keren's (yes, it's Karen but with an "e") work well. My sister Tina had lots of their stuff. She was a serious 80s pop fiend. Particularly Brit-pop. I remember their album "Deep Sea Skiving" the best. Still not sure I understand what that means. Deap sea playing hookie? And my mom's British and I still don't know. Whatevs. Anyway, Tina and a couple of her friends were even Bananaram one year for Halloween. Except the person who was supposed to be Keren couldn't meet up with them, so Siobah and Sarah (Tina) ended up trick-or-treating with Boy George, Dolly Parton (Rachel, age 11) a pregnant lady (me at age 8).* I am sure we were an awesomely awesome crew. (And that Tina tried to lose me a few times along the way.) But the song on Pandora was something I had never heard of nor would have even imagined existed before. It was called "Robert Deniro's Waiting." And the chorus is "Robert DeNiro's waiting. Talking Italian." Over and over again. But...wha? Weird. Apparently, I missed out on a lot of 80s stuff. Not even hours and hours of watching the various versions of I love the 80s cued me in on that one.

*Dolly Parton and the pregnant lady were actually my mom's ideas for costumes. She was sick of us whining about not knowing what to be for Halloween, so she went down in the basement, grabbed a couple of balls, a wig, a pillow, and two insane dresses and said, You'll be Dolly Parton and you'll be pregnant. I know she thought it was really funny, but pregnant? At 8?

Monday, January 23, 2006

Look me in the eye

I just had the most social-event-filled weekend ever since moving to Philly. It was weird. Before it happened, I joked about how I felt the need to booze up in order to prepare for the social interaction. I really do think I'm getting worse at it. I was one big ball of anxiety about it all weekend.

Friday night, I had a dinner date. Went pretty well. Ate too much.

Saturday night Josh and I had a dinner date with Josh's dad's new work associate. This guy is a 25 year old dentist who is working in Papa-in-law's office. He lives in Philly and somehow Josh and I have never met him. Even though he's been working with Papa-in-law since, oh, July or something. And we were so excited to meet him. He's new in town like us and how rockin' would it be to hang with dental people! So at dinner, Young Dentist is on one side of the table, Joshie and I on the other, with Joshie and Young Dentist sitting directly across from each other. And I might as well not have been there at all. (What's with the grammar there? That felt weird.) It was that whole refusing to look at me while he was talking thing. It was out of control. He just kept looking directly at Josh. And I was making the appropriate responsive noises, uh huh's and really's and the like. But it didn't matter. He REFUSED to look me in the eye. At the end of dinner, I asked Josh if he had noticed. Of course not. But it was insane! I am not even exaggerating how bad it was. I thought I could take off my shirt and he wouldn't have noticed. I just don't get it. Why does he hate me? And then I ate way too much. And probably (just maybe) drank too much sangria.

Anyway, after dinner, we met up with a Friend-of-a-College-Friend for dessert at More than Just Ice Cream. Remind me to take you there some day. Delicious! Anyway, at this point, Josh was aware of the not looking me in the eye situation and said he could sort of see it. It wasn't as bad at that point, but I felt general dislike from him. But he seemed way more interested in FoaCF. He could look her in the eye. Whatever. And I ate way, way too much. I mean these desserts were HUGE! I got chocolate cake with chocolate peanut butter ice cream on the side. And they give you two SERIOUS scoops next to a colossal hunk of cake. And even insaner was the size of YD's deep dish apple pie. Dear Lord, it was bigger than a loaf of bread or something. Seriously! Then we ended up at a bar somewhere for more drinks. That was probably least awkward for me but I was still spazzed about the lack of eye contact. I am sure I told FoaCF about it, oh, a hundred times whenever YD was in the bathroom or coughing or whatever.

Then Sunday we met up for lunch with FoaCF and the rest of the FoaCF gang. I was spazzmatic again. Maybe I actually am okay-ish at social interaction, but I feel so stressed about it. To add to the anxiety, Josh and I ended up getting in a fight about what a freak I am when it comes to this stuff and how I hate to interact with people I don't really know very well and how he's all Mr. Social Interacty-pants. And I ate too much again.

Then Sunday for dinner (see, it was an insane weekend) Young Dentist and a Josh high school friend came over for dinner (Josh made some insane venison roast with juniper berries from the awesomely awesome spice store down the street. He got the venison from a judge at the courthouse who is a bow deer hunter. Apparently somewhere in the suburbs of Philly. Hmmm.). And what happened? I tried to do my usual hide in the kitchen/busy myself with preparing/cleaning stuff up while they were here and it was uncomfortable for me. And they actually put on football. Football. I know. It's almost the Super Bowl. But tell me that you want to watch football and then I won't invite you to my house. But one of them did bring brownies. Delicious, gooey, iced brownies. And I ate too much. Again. Forever more.

Friday, January 20, 2006

Pandora bandwagon

Ok. So I am slow in trying out Pandora even though everyone has been ranting about it. And at first, I wasn't so sure about it. It was playing some crap. I tried to get a Madonna station going and they refused to play anything but Madonna ballads and I am sorry but other than "Crazy for You" and "Oh Father" (but OMG, I LOVE "Oh Father"!!), and of course they didn't even play either of those, I'm not so into Madonna ballads. "This used to be my playground"? Puke! "Take a bow"? Ick! But I now have found the love. And it's my station based on Postal Service which is providing lots of 80s new wave/electronica stuff plus some new stuff that sounds like that. I love it! Also the Kanye West station was pretty good too. Whatever. Just try to make fun of Kanye!

Anyway, all of this has me thinking guessed it: karaoke! So while I do not have the guts to bust out a little Kanye "Jesus Walks" or anything next time (which, btw, should be between Feb 1 and 7 so let's get talking about it!), I've got a running list with some good ones for me or others: Hall & Oates "I can't go for that (No can do)" - I think that came as a result of my Wham! station. Love it, and it's on itunes "guilty pleasures" list. Whatever! I am not ashamed! Kim Wilde anything: R-w-S, I think you have dibs since you've done Kim Wilde in the past and it was awesomely awesome. Nu Shooz "I can't wait." More Human League. Or Depeche Mode. And Wham! And even though this has not played on my Pandora radio, I have a new found love of "Hollaback girl". I know. But I love it. So shut up.

Wednesday, January 18, 2006

If a tree falls down in the forest and there's no one there to hear it...

Lately I've been feeling that way about work. As in, if I'm doing work but no one is paying any attention, does it count as work?* I mean NO ONE knows. I could sit here all day and do NOTHING. And no one would be the wiser. The only people I see all day other than Josh (who leaves for work all day, of course) and people who I never talk to at the gym (except for the friendly check-in guy and one trainer who reminds me of Jeff) are my neighbors who on occasion walk past my apartment window to see me sitting in front of my computer day in and day out. But I could be looking at porn. Or shopping. Or on line chat-rooming. Or obsessively searching for good oily-skin skin care products. Ok, I do actually do that one. Without much luck, may I add. And I occasionally shop, but not so much since Christmas. Anyway, it's weird to have no one pay attention. I talk to Gary on occasion, but I think he's online gaming or something while we're on the phone or sleep-talking or something. He's been rather fly-headed on the phone lately. Or always. I don't know. But I don't really want people to be all on my case about work. I know I should be thankful for that. My life is not particularly difficult. I can be just about as slow as I like. And slow I am considering it took me, oh, all day not to totally finish coding a variable for my diss. Maybe that's the problem. If works happens so slowly that at the end of months (or years, in the case of my re-re-re-revised thesis) you have not so much to show for it, is it actually work? And again, it's 4:30 pm and I'm thinking about starting on the work for the Gary-related people who've been ignoring me for 2+ months. So I blog instead. B/c sometimes you pay attention. At least I've got that!

*Shout out to Connie for suggesting I blog about this.

Tuesday, January 17, 2006

The grossest and most delicious thing ever

So Joshie bought me this SpongeBob Squarepants candy a while back from Riteaid. It's called "SlimeDunk." It's like Lik-m-aid but better and grosser. I am a fan of all things sugary, but this takes it to the next level. The whole thing comes in a package that looks like those cheese and cracker things - you know, the ones where you use a plastic red thingie to smear processed cheez spread on a cracker? Anyway, the package is like that but with 3 compartments. First you have a SpongeBob shaped lemonade flavored lollipop on a plastic stick. Then in the next compartment is the sour apple green "slime." The final compartment contains sour cherry flavored "powder." Or rather sugar. You take SpongeBob, you dip him in the green slime, and then you dip him in the sugar and then you lick him. And, OMG, he tastes SO GOOD! (And was definitely worth the 2 WW points.)

Ooh! Found a picture!

Monday, January 16, 2006

I told my parents.

So Saturday I went home to tell my parents that I had begun the conversion process (sorry, AK, that I didn't exactly advertise the news more broadly! I didn't really want my parents to find out by blog...not that they ever look at my blog or, in the case of my mom, even know how to use the internet). The talk didn't go exactly as I had planned. My sister Rachel was there. I didn't really expect that and she's not so good for serious talks. It made me postpone giving the news until more than an hour of lunching/talking, but I guess it didn't make a huge difference. I said, Rachel's going to want to runaway but... And then she ran away, b/c she knew what I was about to say.

Anyway, it was kind of interesting. It was kind of sad at times, but it was interesting. When I talked about it with Josh later, he made me realize that my parents were more upset that I was rejecting Catholicism than the fact that I was choosing Judaism didn't really seem to matter. It almost seemed like the reaction would have been the same if I were becoming a Methodist or something (or maybe not, I do think there was a bit of worry about the whole hell thing, though they never said that and even though I thought to ask, So do you think I'm going to hell? I thought maybe that wasn't a fun question to ask nor did I really want to know the answer). The first thing my mom even asked was "Why do you hate Catholicim?" Or maybe she wasn't that dramatic, but it was something along those lines. But it really seemed like they were trying to tell me that Catholicism had all of the stuff I liked about Judaism, if only I gave it a chance. But as Josh pointed out, they were about 10 years too late. I mean, there was a day that I came home from church when I was about 18 or 19 and said, I hate it! I can't go anymore! And it was such a whoop and took so much nerve (and a number of failed attempts) to actually say that to them. Apparently, they repressed b/c when I brought it up a few years ago (in discussions about religion related to Josh), they acted surprised that I had totally rejected the Church. Um. Okay. I can't really understand how they didn't get that then, but the conversation in which they realized (again) that they had occurred happened over a year ago, so if they wanted to make their case, they should have done it some time between then and now and probably not when I tell them I'm going to convert to Judaism.

Anyway, really they were great about it. I know they're sad, and my dad even used the word "disappointed" (ouch, I hate to do that to my parents), but their main message was, We want you to be happy and you can't do something that someone else wants you to do. So that was good. There was no disowning. I know for sure b/c my dad said, We're not going to disown you. Phew! I can imagine that they feel kind of like they failed or did something wrong or perhaps that I'm some sort of martian child that was switched with their should-be-a-Catholic-kid since they did all the stuff it seems like you should do to get your kid to be a Catholic (sent me to Catholic school from K to 12 and took me to Church every Sunday from birth until I went off to college and were just really into their religion). But at least that part is over with. They know. I can feel better about going for it. And now I'm making note cards with Jewish/Hebrew terms/blessings/etc. There's a lot of stuff to learn! I'm 29 years behind!

Thanks for the support too. I really do appreciate it. And if you're wondering about conversion presents... ;)

Hebrew name necklace!! Ok, I don't have one yet, but I will. And I'll take suggestions too. How would you like to name me?

Friday, January 13, 2006

How do you get motivated when...

it's Friday at 4:30pm?

you're supposed to be doing work for people you've only ever met once?
they haven't responded to your emails in, oh, 2 months?
these emails contained actual questions requiring answers to complete at least some of the work you're supposed to do for them, though Lord knows there's plenty of additional stuff you can be doing?
you know eventually they're going to send you a spazzy email asking why the work's not done? (I guess that should be motivating, but it just makes me mad instead.)

you want to continue your project of making flashcards about Judaism? (That's right. I'm making flashcards. What can't you do with flashcards?)

it's going to be Shabbat in about an hour...and maybe you should try to start keeping that a little better?

you're feeling slightly anxious about telling your parents the big news tomorrow? (And I know you know what I'm talking about, and it's NOT about babies!)

Update: Actually, according to the synagogue schedule, Shabbat started at 4:39 pm. Whoops. And even worse...I'm currently doing laundry. How's that for work?

Tuesday, January 10, 2006

Already? YUM!

They're back! I just got my first two of the year from CVS. Why is it that my favorite treats come wrapped in foil?*

*Connie, meet me at Qdoba Feb 1-7 for a burrito followed by a cream egg!

Least favorite days of the week

First, thanks for your concern about Joshie. He is doing okay. The worst thing now is his thumb-related paranoia (he seems convinced that it's eventually going to fall off). He should get over that eventually. I hope.

The culprit:

So back to my story...I now hate Tuesdays and Thursdays. Somewhere along the line I have designated them as the days that I work on the hellhole of a paper that was once my thesis and then a PAA presentation and then an ASA presentation and hopefully someday an actual published article. The actual published article part is what I'm working on. And I've been suffering from the most massive of brain farts ever relating to this stupid paper. How can one possibly work on the same thing for now over FIVE YEARS and not be done with it? I don't know. Why don't you ask me? At this point, I am sure you're thinking, Just send the damn thing out. But I can't. I have actually messed it up so much in the past few months that I don't even know what it's about anymore. So, I will putter on. And I will never finish school. Or maybe I will, but I'll never publish anything and no one will ever give me a job. At least not in academia, which is probably fine b/c apparently I'd lose it anyway since I can't even come close to putting together a paper worth publishing. And let me just be clear that there is NOTHING else in the pipeline that could be publishable any time in the foreseeable future. NOTHING. So crap. Or whatever. I don't even know if I care.

Also, apparently, I am losing insane amounts of hair b/c the poor guy who just came to unclog our shower drain just about killed himself plunging in there. (I tried earlier but was unsuccessful. I guess I wasn't trying hard enough.) All he would say afterwards was, "Too much hair. Too much hair." I try to collect all the hair I notice on the wall and then throw it away after my shower, but I guess I need some special drain cover (like my parents have...I wonder why...) to prevent taking a shower with a bathtub half full of water in the near future.

Friday, January 06, 2006


I've been out of the loop for a while. My life has been revolving around family since about the 21st of December. I was at my parents' house (wrapping presents like a fiend) then at Josh's parents' then back at my own parents to visit with old friends and the fam some more. Then I was back in Philly but hanging with my parents one day and then my cousin the next and then headed down to DC for New Year's. We got back to Josh's parents' house (where my car usually lives) on the 1st (not sure how I made it...) and then spent the next day picking up wedding photos, going to the dentist (Josh's dad), and celebrating Josh's sister's birthday. Then...back in Philly. A friend of mine from UVa (yes, there are a couple of those left still!) was in Philly, so I hung with her all of Tuesday.

Wednesday was semi-back-to-normal. I mostly just ran errands/cleaned up our place. Then Josh got home early and we were having dinner and then...I was just sitting down to have my salad and Josh was in the kitchen cutting a bagel and I hear, Oh God, I cut myself in a serious way. I run over and see blood running off his hand and into the sink. I said, Do you think we need to go to the emergency room? Yes. So I grabbed my bag/his wallet, our coats and we ran out the door. Thankfully, there is an emergency room about 2 blocks away from us. So we seriously ran there. Except that Josh gets all queasy when he sees/talks about/thinks about blood and it was more like stumbling there. The glorious thing about the emergency room is that you try to get there all fast just so that you can wait. You get there. You put your name on a list. Then you sit. After a long time, a nurse calls you name and looks at you to make sure you're not going to die in the next half hour or so ("triage"). Then they send you back to the waiting room. Then someone else calls you to get your personal info/have you sign some forms. Then you sit and wait again for a long time. Then you finally get called back to have a doctor or something like a doctor see you. Then you sit there the longest of all. We were so excited to be back in a little curtained off area thinking this meant Josh would have his finger taken care of soon, but it was at least 2 hours that we were back there. We actually were at the emergency room for 4 hours in total. But finally, he got 5-6 stitches (it was a seriously icky cut into his thumb) and a tetanus shot. And we stumbled back home. And then I finally ate the rest of my stinking salad! And chocolate Christmas bells. And whatever the heck else I felt like eating.

The next day...I got up and went to the gym. Came back and Josh said his finger felt like it was burning. Didn't sound good. But what do you expect when you attempt to cut off half your thumb? They told us to change the bandage and put Neosporin on it twice a day. So I had made my coffee and took two bites of my cereal and then went to help change the bandage. It apparently hurt like hell when I took all the wrappings off him and them blood started pouring off Josh's hand into the sink. So we tried running it under water, but the blood just kept coming and then it REALLY started hurting (like he was yelling at me b/c it was hurting) and then he thought he was going to puke. So I wrapped it up again and we ran back to the emergency room. (I remembered to turn off the coffee pot). Again we had to go through the whole thing...actually, they put us on the "fast track" for some reason. And we managed to spend just over 2 hours there. It was rather glorious. But it was less fun than the previous day b/c it hurt Josh so much more. Like he was almost moaning in pain. It was making me so upset that I just started crying. It was really horrible b/c that made him feel worse...Shame spiral! Anyway, eventually we were seen and apparently nothing more was wrong. We just shouldn't have changed the bandage so early. Whoops. Though those were there instructions. And he probably should have been keeping his thumb up. Whoops again. But they didn't tell us that yesterday (though I don't know why we didn't think of it either). So we basically spent two hours in the emergency room to have someone else wrap his thumb (apparently, I wrapped it too tightly - though he told me to do that). Ok. So now we're waiting until tonight to change the bandage. We are supposed to have our shoes and jackets on and be ready to run out the door just in case there is another bloody explosion from his thumb. Josh's sister is supposed to be here tonight for special Shabbat services and she apparently does even worse with blood than Josh does. (After getting a shot on Monday, she was basically wiped out all day.) So I hope I don't have to deal with a passed out person and a bleeding person simultaneously later today.

And I haven't done any work in 10 thousand years. So there!

PS: We are getting a bagel guillotine. And Josh is staying away from all knives for a while.