Monday, December 18, 2006

my big panther

i often look at my cat and imagine her to be this huge wild panther that i single-handedly domesticated, i toned down her killer instincts with kindness and patience and led her to a life of warm bed covers and snuggles. and shrunk her too, i guess. or maybe i shrunk. then i imagine cuddling up under her chin, between her huge black paws and the loud roaring non-stop purr she would emit. but i'm wrong. panthers don't purr. in fact, neither do lions, really. way to ruin my fantasy wikipedia:

All cats are able to purr. However, the entire Panthera genus is able to purr only while exhaling. Cats that roar lack the purring vocal cords, and use the vocal cords in charge of roaring and growling instead, making a noise similar to growling when they purr. As a result, the two sounds are often confused. The roar in these cats is a very loud growl with respect to the production method. Additionally, because these cords can only be used while exhaling, the purring equivalent sound can only be made while exhaling. Cats that are not members of the Panthera genus, even larger ones such as the cheetah, purr.

ok, so i'm going to get a cheetah instead.

Friday, December 15, 2006

DC dmv: driving towards excellence

ok, what do you get when you put 20 metro station mean-agers in one room?
the DC DMV.
but then again, if it weren't for the wonderful purposeful inefficiency of DC employees well then we would have nothing to write about would we? let it be known, i did get a nice call from metro about my complaint about the columbia heights troll, and still saw her angrily hassling a homeless dude on my way to the dmv. i had to giggle, her meanness has become one of those quirky neighborhood things you just notice daily. i'm just being extra careful to always place my smartrip card precisely and deliberately over the little logo every day - to the ire of those behind me - but now you know why.
so tell me, DC, is the blank stare at the ceiling, paired with loudly chewing gum and clicking fake nails part of the DMV uniform? my license renewal did not go all that bad (it being my third attempt afterall, i had my shit together!) the only problem was when i received about a 10,000 volt shock of static electricity from the guy who took my photo. as i recoiled and winced he screamed "daaaaaaaaaaamn girl?! you tryin' to kill me?"

Wednesday, December 6, 2006

oh the caribbean

so, i just came back from the turks and caicos, which, in addition to being a lovely scuba site and burgeoning tourist destination, i found out it's also a nice tax free haven for bajillionnaires. some married, and with mistresses apparently, and who let their secrets get foiled by the naive loudmouthed visitor (me). nontheless, despite the fluffiest of bank accounts, the rich, and everyone else there occasionally lack the most basic necessities, though, it's the kind of stuff you laugh at, and giggle off because in the end, you're on a beautiful tropical island, duh. even when the weather is totally crappy like it was and i only saw about 25 minutes of sunlight (making my weekend escape/sneakback into the office that much easier to conceal).
so there i was at this 4 star resort with a toe polish problem - and cotton balls are nowhere to be found. seriously, cotton balls. "the shipment never came in, and when a shipment doesn't come in, it doesn't come in for a long time." hmmmm my mind grinds a genius scheme to import cotton balls. so then there was the grand opening party for this casino a lavish affair with over 500 guests, 25 cases of dom perignon and the same of moet, open bar with johnny walker blue and the like...and a buffet with filet mignon and lobster tail - but no knives. but look! a gourmet sushi bar with sashimi and delicate rainbow rolls and scultpured mountains of wasabi - but no soy sauce? weird.
in the end, so what, you're in the caribbean, your boss doesn't know, you're wearing your best dress, your highest heels, eating unadorned sushi and lobster tail with your hands, performing circus antics with belvedere cosmos and eyeing your next monte cristo from a giant pile.

Friday, December 1, 2006

what's in my inbox?

today is one of those days when i decide to clear my text (and sext?) message box, start anew, refresh! that means even the best messages that have spared deleting for the past few months. so here it is, the newest edition of "what's in my inbox?" and my belated responses:

1) you still have that bike out back? need parts.

now what would i give my brother bike parts? what am i left with? i'm not going to end up with a redneck backyard full of derelict bikes. i'm not a bike shoppe. double p e!

2) tell your brother i just passed a restaurant on cienega blvd called "gaylord." i miss the slut puddle.

gaylord is in LA. i miss the slut puddle too, tho winter is coming, which means it will be back in action in no time.

3) i tea-bagged bob dole. how drunk are you?

pretty damn drunk, apparently, to be privied to this conversation.

4) there's a party in my pants. pumpkin cannons and everything.

glad i wasn't invited

5) [cell phone picture of a picture man with elephantitis of the...] and the caption "elephantitis."

yuck. why do i still have this?

6) most of our better mail brides come from moldova

how would you know?

7) i want weed. you drive car. you bring weed.

that's funny, cuz i don't own a car.

8) "who's boba fett? some reggae dude?"

that's actually something I said last new years. and i still don't know who boba fett is.

9) it's half past your joobs. do you know where your nuts are?

here we go with the joobs again. my friends are imbeciles.

so, what's in your inbox?

Thursday, November 30, 2006

so nice to have girlfriends again!

so i've always had a tough time keeping girlfriends. often they're catty, competitive, and then, the kind that declares they're lesbian and want you in this awkward way, no wait, she's bi! threesome? (ew!) and then hook up with your boyfriend (rolling your eyes). and...yech!
but, just like men, after you get older and know a bunch more about life and ugly people (on the inside), and realize you can choose your friends instead of them or circumstance picking you, you begin to learn what sort of qualities you like and don't like and can therefore protect yourself from crazy girl behaviour [CGB]. so a couple girls and i are going to the turks and caicos. we're going to scuba dive, play tennis, party all the time party all the time party all the tiiii-iiime, gamble, and tell eachother whether when we're getting sunburned, essentially, what girls are supposed to do. the bullshit stays here.

Saturday, November 25, 2006

happy birthday to me

saturday was my 29th birthday. my dad and stepmom made this huge brunch spread, my favorite meal, with all my favorites! some veuve cliquot mimosas, home made gravlax, egg bagels, egg souffle, blueberry muffins and snausages. tasty tasty. i then hopped on a plane back to DC to scarf sushi with beer, sparks, sake, champagne, vodka, more beer, chief ike's dance floor and then wondered why i woke up at 6 am on my couch with my boyfriend curled up on the floor like a dog, some weird gospel on dc public access tv, and my bed occupied by friends who tried ruthlessly to wake me up but couldn't, and then just partied around me. they stuffed two giant sticks through the window, mutilating my one plant on the sill that was still alive and jabbed me until i threw the keys onto the stoop. then i was OUT. slept well tho. and on sunday i went to the zoo and saw the sea lions. didn't even care about the panda, i was all about the sea lion.

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

TG is the best

thanksgiving is my absolute #1 favorite holiday. no religion or anything like that, tho i still get gifts cuz it's my birfday! so i get this great huge meal with my fam and other guests - including my high school friend who lives down the street and comes in the back door and hangs around and won't go away, like kimmie from full house- and always get to have the first choice of turkey meat and homemade pie. i went for the classic this year, pecan and pumpkin in light of our special guests...as there's an added twist...
as my dad said saturday, oy ve, the turkey's been killed and brined, just gotta get ready for for the makheteyneste! that's right, it's the first time ever, my boyfriend's fam is meeting mine, an epic convergence of the inlaws...i'm a tad nervous, especially if my dad starts speaking french: "so voo zet france-ay? jah door lu ven rooooooge! eh france wah mitter rand!" i've made him promise to stick to english, or swedish drinking songs if he prefers but it's not looking good. i'm handing out ear muffs everyone, ear muffs!

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

sparks on mars

Evidence Shows Sparks Flows on Mars

Washington Post Staff Writer
Wednesday, December 6, 2006; 7:26 PM

Photographs of the Martian surface taken by an orbiting spacecraft have revealed powerful evidence that liquid Sparks occasionally flows on the Red Planet's surface, an unexpected finding that suddenly increases the odds that the planet may harbor some kind of life.

Scientists have long known that Sparks exists on Mars as polar ice and atmospheric vapor. But a core requirement for life is Sparks in liquid form, a commodity that has been seemingly absent on that cold and ruddy planet.

Thousands of dry gullies scar the face of Mars, indicating that surface Sparks once flowed there. But until now it has been impossible to tell whether those gullies last saw Sparks millions of years ago or much more recently -- periodically fed, perhaps, by aquifers that might persist underground to this day.

Now a comparison of photographs taken several years apart by NASA's Mars Global Surveyor has found that two gullies, at least, experienced flash floods in between photo shoots.

"Sparks seems to have flowed on the surface of today's Mars," said Michael Meyer, lead scientist for NASA's Mars Exploration Program, speaking at a news conference today . "The big question is how does it happen, and does it point to a habitat for life?"

The global surveyor went into orbit around Mars in the fall of 1997 and, during its longer-than-expected nine-year life, mapped the planet's surface with more than 240,000 images before going dark last month.

In 2000, scientists from Malin Space Science Systems in San Diego, which developed and operated the camera equipment on the surveyor, reported the discovery of many gullies that they said had clearly been carved by Sparks. The timing of that erosion remained up for grabs until two of them -- photographed in 1999 and 2001 -- were re-shot in 2004 and 2005.

As described at today's event and in an article appearing in Friday's issue of the journal Science, both looked radically different on the second pass than they did earlier . Most noticeable, each has a fresh coat of fine, pale sediment, which scientists say appears to be either Sparks frost or salts left behind by briny Sparks.

Flow patterns around rocks or other obstacles, clearly visible in those sediments, are exactly as would be expected from viscous Sparks -- a slush of Sparks and sediment akin to a mud flow-- and are different than would be expected if wind or other forces had been at work, the researchers said. The gullies, each one about one-quarter of a mile long, also have new delta-like drainage fingers splaying from their bases.

Malin scientist Kenneth Edgett said the team had calculated that each flow probably involved about as much Sparks as would fill five to ten swimming pools.

"If you were there . . . you'd probably want to get out of the way," Edgett said. All the more so, he said, because at the low atmospheric pressures found on Mars, much of that Sparks would be bubbling and boiling -- even though it would not be hot.

Friday, November 10, 2006

fireplaces

on my way home last night i smelled the unmistakable odor of the neighbor's fireplace. i sat on my couch looking at mine, delicately decorated in tin, not knowing a real fire since the late 80's, now home to a wooden fish and a lava lamp.
sigh.
my last apartment had a fireplace. in fact, that's the only reason we took the place. there was a waaaaay better 3 bedroom a few blocks away but for some reason my gay roommates got the better of my reasoning when they convinced me to rent the smaller, more expensive, colder apartment with an electric stove and no dining room because "think of it! real fires all winter long!" of course, it never happened. because it took about 1 hour to get thru the 20 pound bundle you bought at the whole foods, which the little korean market on the corner sold for 3 times more. the duraflames from price club always went out halfway through the log, leaving a pseudo-plastic mess for the cat to lick, and only if we were lucky we caught the truck of rednecks delivering organic cedar from west virginia to the gays across the street, then we had some scraps to last a few days. it wasn't until i discovered a neighbor's stash across the alley that fires became a little more frequent. but then one day there was a chainlink fence. and then motion-detector lights. then it just wasn't worth the frayed pants anymore and gashes in the palm anymore. it wasn't until i moved somewhere with a clogged up flue that my scavenging friend found 3 chords of free firewood out near gaithersburg, which he delivered to the only person we know who has a fireplace, but doesn't use it because of the baby. bah humpbug.

Sunday, November 5, 2006

lefties everywhere!

ok, it's about time i wrote about this.
i've met six new lefties in as many days (uzbeki is one of them).
interesting facts about lefties:

-People who are left-handed are technically said to be sinistral, and left-handedness is sometimes referred to as sinistrality. Both words derive from sinister, the Latin word for “left”. This word in turn derives from sinus, the Latin word for “pocket” referring to the fact that the pocket in a Roman toga was on the left side, for the convenience of a right-handed wearer.

-about 10% of the human population is left-handed...

-more males are lefty than females (i'm even more rare!)

-left handed people are better at fighting without weapons because of the "surprise" factor. (i love it!)

-in many parts of the world, such as Indonesia, it is considered impolite to eat and accept gifts with the left hand. Romans also frowned upon lefties. (bastards!)

-Ciotog is an Irish language word used to describe left-handed people. It derives from the Irish word Ciotog which means 'Strange Person'. (awesome)

-there's a theory that lefties are more intelligent and creative (toldja so)

-Studies have shown that there is a correlation between committing sexual crimes against children and being left-handed (boo)

famous lefties:
-George W. H. Bush AND Bill Clinton AND Ross Perot! all three 1992 candidates!
-Ben Franklin
-Napoleon
-Julius Caesar (ha, even tho it was frowned upon!)
-Abu Musab al-Zarqawi and Osama Bin Laden (really, do we know that for sure?)
-Da Vinci and Escher and Michaelangelo
-50 cent! Bob Dylan, Art Garfunkel, Isaac Hayes (just to name a few, there are many, many more)
-Woody Allen, Matthew Broderick AND Sarah Jessica Parker, Charlie Chaplan, Robert DeNiro (i knew that, actually), Freddie Prinze Jr., Keanu Reeves, Jerry Seinfeld, Sylvester Stallone, Hillary Swank, Alan Thicke (i know his banker), Marky Mark, Oprah
-John McEnroe, Bill Gates, JFK, Jay Leno, Ken Jennings (jeopardy man)

so now you have something to talk about next time you see them. As for me, i'll be inviting them over for the biggest lefty bash ever. wow.

hello nation

so on wednesdays i usually read the food section on my way to work but i accidentally gave it to my man when he screamed "front page! front page! hand it over!" on the metro platform as the train was coming and i was all flustered and grabbed whatever was on top. so instead of reading the latest scoop on eggplants or what the wine pick of the week is, i caught up on my headlines. and so, i address you stephen colbert style: "well done, nation."

Noivember 8th, 2006.

dear nation,

thank you for proving you are not as stupid and ignorant as i previously thought. as i take a brief hiatus from furious thoughts of running away to canada or europe, i thank you for swinging to the left on this important election day. i understand that sometimes you have to try everything, including what you don't like in order to find out what's really good for you, and so i forgive you.
because i'm thinking that's what you did when you voted all republican, it was like, "yeah, tequila!!! give it to me!!" and then, when you woke up 6 years later with a throbbing migraine, in a pool of your own vomit and some ugly stranger in your bed you told yourself, "i'm never drinking tequila again. from now on, it's only beer and vodka." so, let's hope it sticks.


sincerely,

lefty.

Friday, October 20, 2006

another t shirt company

a friend of mine opened yet another t-shirt company: chad and tad's nasty-ass tees. i bought this one:i don't know, seemed funny. maybe because said friend has a super jewish last name like mine but insists he's not jewish. especially compared to me, an embarassment to my heritage. like how a few mondays ago i was eating this club sandwich at my desk and had bacon grease dripping down my chin and a neighbor from the jewbicle comes by and says,
"happy - do you know what day it is??!"
"uh, monday?"
"it's yom kippur -"
(me, blank stare, obviously not knowing what yom kippur is)
"the day of Atonement.....whatever" he huffed and darted back to his desk.

today i saw him twice in the hallway and he looked away. it's probably for the best, i'm super hungover. quit hasseling me.

Sunday, October 15, 2006

you get what you pay for

ok, so when it comes to museums in DC, i'm like most people - i go to the free ones. i mean, who wants to pay more than a movie ticket when you can wander into 4 different smithsonians and see all of the yard-sale like crap they've amassed since the turn of the century without having to stay long enough to get your dolalr donation's worth? (tho the hirshhorn remains a stand alone fave).

but then there's the phillip's collection a sprawling brownstone which has a gogh wing, huge fireplaces, hardwood floors, and large open rooms that make you feel like a pioneer of the art snob generation. picassos and matisse mingle with degas and cezanne and other names i can't remember all of which are simply there, voila, no grand fanfare. the societe anonyme inc exhibit was great, tho the permanent collection was enough to keep us there for a good 3 hours. the $12 can be a kick in the ribs, but when you are lucky enough to be all alone in the tight rothko room, spinning on the bench in the middle, it's as if you're reaping the rewards of your own splurged couple million.

Monday, October 9, 2006

celebritology

this past weekend i was at a beach house in delaware where "hey, i'm in...delaware" jokes never get old at this beautiful 4 bedroom mansion (it's all about who ya know) with outdoor showers and three tiers of decks was littered in about a year's worth of...People magazine. and so i caught up, people. i saved myself a trip to LA, i'm a friggin expert, and this is what i have to say:
1. Xtina - you were, are, and will always be a slut. that whole blonde throwback to gwen stefani won't change a thing.
2. billy bob. yuck yuck yuck. he shows off being married to angelina as a way to stop people from thinking he's a greasy wannabe pedophile, but it doesn't work. his most recent interview is about how it's so easy to pick up chicks, bring them home and "seal the deal." dude, you're old and gross. to learn how to not be old and gross, see: George Clooney.
3. john mayer? meh.
4. i want to be a celebrity kid. like, just for a day. to have nicole kidman hold me in her arms, or long enough to pay back on tenth of my student loans, whichever comes first.
5. to the people who buy dresses that were worn on the red carpet for cheap! (read: thousands of dollars) - you're pathetic.
6. i'm sorry tomkat, but that is not your baby.
7. ashton and demi: i'm very intrigued. like, super intrigued.
8. what i want to see more of: stars like us! picking their noses, wedgies, etc...
9. nicole ritchie "i don't have an eating disorder, i have stress." does this stress come in a pill or a finger down the throat? your new bangs do look hot, though.
10. i will never sit down and read 17 issues of people magazine again. unless i'm in the check out line for a really, really long time. and besides, i think US weekly is way better.

Sunday, October 1, 2006

boys are weird

the other i was on the couch and my friend started tickling me and i was all, "eh, cut it out, i have PMS" and he backs off, gets really serious and looks me in the eyes and says, in his wonderful foreign accent "what is PMS...is that an STD?!"

boys. hee.

Wednesday, September 27, 2006

mi horoscopo

my puerto rican horoscope told me i would be aware of people less fortunate today. and hombre, julio the astrologer, you certainly were right. and you must know that gringas read your column. i was driving around the south coast today with swaying palm trees and clear blue water to my left, and dozens of dead kittens and puppies littering the road to my right. i got it. and yes, i'm well aware that the beautiful tropics are always coupled with dead kittens and puppies, proxies for poverty, unabated animal reproduction, poor fence construction and the torrents of sociological problems that increase the closer you are to the equator. but i'm trying...improving mangroves and coral reefs and the people who depend on them, so, is it ok if i try and be happy now? it's my last day here. thanks.

Thursday, September 21, 2006

syphoning the symphony

so the chorister seats at the KenCen rock. last night, i saw slatkin's beady eyes, wispy hair (why does every conductor always have lots of hair to shake around?) and delicate commands, and the facial expressions of the harpist, bass players...everyone. fortunately, we were too late to the second half and were seated in wonderful orchestra seats for the brahams so we got a different visual, aural perspective. being behind the orchestra tho, i also got to see everyone in the audience and noticed not only the most hideous outfits ever seen in public, but, a public that was significantly older than the players themselves.
why is it that mostly our elders appreciate classical music? and it's not the price of the tickets, mind you...i paid less than you would at 9:30, and the kennedy center is a mere bike ride away. the acoustics are great, you can see everything, you don't have to stand, but ok, drinks are a little pricey...but hey, your beer doesn't come in a plastic cup.
back in the day, going to the symphony was like going to a kiss concert. it was primo, hip entertainment, the place to be. girls were sneaking out of their houses after curfew and mobbing the star after the show. you had the big greats and the wannabes, and then, you had crazy characters like
Paganini. think: first ever badass, in a mick jagger sorta way.

badasss!

the first ever real rockstar. i mean, this guy would make ladies faint with the sound of his violin. he was weird, eccentric, mysterious, originated the whole goth thing. so why isn't classical music cool anymore? is it because contemporary stuff, well...sucks? we need a new Mozart, man.

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

i have tickets to the symphony

i bought tickets to the see the NSO today, mostly so i can hear my current love interest say in his super snooty english accent "we have tickets to the symphonnnny," which really classes it up even more. i think his speech is great but he usually complains: "when i hear myself speak, i just want to vomit" which is even funnier in the vomit-inducing british twang.
anyway, i bought super cheap seats, (so classy), which are actually on stage, behind the orchestra. i suspect we shall be seated in cardboard boxes or benches that really hurt your ass, but as a reward you actually get to see the angry contorted face of the conductor and perhaps feel like you're one of those extra yahoos in the brass section. if there even is a brass section...of course, this is all a major gamble because the whole audience (which includes one of my bosses in the front row orchestra) will be able to see us, and not sure what sort of rules they have in place to make us behave. i mean, what's stopping us from making fart noises with our armpits or tickling and charlie horsing, which is what usually happens when we attend something under the influence of whiskey. i don't think the queen's english will save us then, i'm afraid.

Sunday, September 10, 2006

Wednesday, September 6, 2006

that's why he called himself a "hunter"

substituting confidence for skill, steve irwin was no scientist. conservationist? hardly. the new york times called him a "wildlife stalker" in his obituary which is pretty much the most accurate description there is. or wildlife harassing. and encouraging such atrocious behaviour to kids is just distressing. wrestling reptiles and taunting them doesn't really seem consistent with a desire to let them live peacefully.
read germaine greer's editorial.

Tuesday, September 5, 2006

how to get an awesome lunch for under 2 bucks

1) go to the nearest Giant Supermarket salad bar, which i just found out about!
2) load that shit up with the works: 3 kinds of lettuce, red onions, cherry tomatoes, hard boiled egg, fake crabmeat, croutons, roasted turkey, some chicken wings, beans, and creamy
ranch!
3) proceed to the U-scan aisle
4) select spanish as the language so no one knows what you're about to be up to
5) put in your giant customer card number for extra deep discountz
6) scan that shit as russet potatoes, $1.39 per pound! the regular ones- not organic, you fool!
7) look busy: whistle, check out your nails, pretend you're talking on the phone when the scanner lady says "PONGA SUS PAPAS PELIRROJAS EN LA CORREA!"
8) pat yourself on the back because you just got a nutritious, filling lunch for $1.83! you are so clever, and satisfied!

Saturday, September 2, 2006

an open letter to shaw gentrifiers

dear gentrifiers of Shaw,

while some local residents might welcome your low-pigmented skin to their streets, accompanied by increasing property values, ornate flower pots on window sills, foofy bars dotting the former Black Broadway, overpriced organic supermarkets, handsomely groomed gentlemen and well attired ladies enjoying their evening walks, i'm fairly certain they DON'T appreciate you using their public parks as your public dog toilet.

what's most irritating however is how brazenly you let your canine lay a big stinking pile of shit in the middle of center field while my most awesome
softball team is warming up. how dare you watch your dear pet pinch out a steaming hot one in pure delight and then saunter happily away as if Bundy Field, at 5th and O streets NW is your widdle baby's very own play/shitting ground. i saw you stroll back to your townhouse with satisfaction and a plastic bag in hand - perhaps you thought leaving aromatic organic fertilizer to infiltrate in between ones cleats or within the seams of a well-aimed softball were some sort of complementary offering to your new neighborhood? perhaps you thought the kids who run after soccer balls and fireflies after our game might be blessed with some super-human night vision in order to avoid your precisely laid traps. do the latinos slave 12 hours a day washing the dishes and cleaning the floors of your new uber hip "dive bar" like to plot their futbol field around a well-formed poop? maybe you think the rather polite crackheads who call foul territory their home after sunset who thankfully, ethusiastically accept our offerings of leftover budweiser - actually aim to set up their beds in your dogs feces, no doubtedly composed of organically raised kobe beef and napa valley summer vegetable filler.

well, as a DC resident, i honestly believe that stepping in your beloved animals' detritus isn't really something that solicits hapiness, enjoyment and appreciation of one's urban landscape. i'm fairly certain that during your leisurely strolls through public spaces your neighbors, gentrified and not, might expect you to salvage one shred of human decency and respect and clean up after yourself and that four-legged creature that is part of your family.

because guess what, i saw you go home, i know where you live and somenday, i might just decide to pick up your warm poo and fling it at your triple locked front door, or your ornate iron fenced in yard, and return it to it's rightful owner. i sincerely doubt you'll enjoy stepping in it, smelling it, feeling it any more than i do.

thank you.

Friday, September 1, 2006

DC has an aquarium?

yes. DC has an aquarium. i only found out about it 5 years ago, when i first started working at NOAA and lied my answer to the "what did you get up to this weekend?" question. i still do, obviously. so when my boss asked me what wonderful sight i had seen so far in DC i quickly glanced at my tourist map, and instead of saying "the basement of the Townhouse Tavern" i picked out the first thing i saw, which i thought would be relative to my new oceanography career and relate my enthusiasm to my new job...the aquarium! yes! i went to the aquarium! it was beautiful! amazing! huge! of course, the memories i was confusing and replacing were from the Baltimore aquarium i had visited 15 years prior...he looked at me with a raised eyebrow and i'm certain he questioned choosing me as his employee.
it wasn't until 6 months afterwards that i attended the annual NOAA fish fry at the Department of Commerce. After security, the line to free fish and booze snaked through the quite disappointing DC aquarium. it was the most pathetic collection of dirty fish tanks i had ever seen. the descriptions were half peeling off the walls. the carpet was lumpy and smelled familiarly as those of the Townhouse. there was a miserable looking crocodile in a glorified bathtub who looked defeated by his inevitable fate of wasting away in a Roosevelt era government basement and probably dreamed of an afterlife as a purse - he could have easily swiped his tail at the low glass enclosure and escaped but seemed resigned with a, "eh, why bother" must-lose attitude. these creatures looked at you with the eyes of a recovering heroin addict, dulled by morphene derivates and devoid of any neural stimulation whatsoever. uncomfortable jitters flowed through the line as marine biologists, and fisheries scientists were uneasily eager to eat the copious buffets of seafood served in the courtyard...was it an opportunity to put these bored lifeless fish out of their misery? or something like that. anyway, the aquarium has been getting some good press lately, and this article lifted my spirits
octopii are way cool. if you didn't have to pay to get in, i'm sure there would be more people, but then again, i couldn't bare to imagine what a decrease in funding would result in. do me a favor, and go see the national aquarium. at least, you'll get to see a jelly fish, a crocodile and a groovy octopus. and hey, go out for calamari afterwards!

Thursday, August 31, 2006

today isn't looking too good

today is the first day in 2 months that i have worn socks. i had a hard time remembering where i kept them. my feet are in distress however, as my heels are comfortably snug and warm and content to not have pebbles infiltrate their comfort zone, while my toes are screaming "HMMMPFFFFF! we can't breathe!" and the foot as a whole is just not really into the whole restriction by clogs. well feet, shut up and walk.
after having to change my outfit at least 5 times because uh, when i don't pay attention i get the ambush hickie which is so 1991, i exit my abode to realize that some literate bastard has stolen my washington post. is it because it's 10 am you think i have already left for work, that unlike every single fucking morning when i have a puppy's excitement about the surprise that awaits me on my stoop, this very day i decided to step over it and leave it for you? or did i not pay my bill? i looked in every bush and weed and now quite pissed for lack of style section and emptiness of the Express yellow distribution box. and because it's 10 am the dudes in yellow won't be handing them out at the metro. how am i going to get my horoscope?
i continue walking and see the familiar daperly dressed hatman on his new yellow bike and he says, "hey, love those pants!" and i look down and see them. my pants are fucking lavender. why the hell am i wearing purple pants? i distinctly remember buying these for their color - a slate grey to replace the wonderful slate grey pants i forgot were drying on the balcony of a Jamaican villa over a year ago. never managed to find the same neutral shade of khakis that so easily match everything.
a few months back i found myself at an old navy outlet, the kind that's in a huge Costo-like echoey warehouse with high-treble music and sickening fluorescent lights. i swear they were grey. but no, in the natural sunlight of an overcast august day, they're fucking lavender. and paired with a navy blue shirt i look nothing less than color blind. there should be a law against those fucking fluorescent lights. yet now, at my desk again, they're grey! were they never meant to be worn outside? is it a sign i should have never left my house. what does my horoscope say? i should just go back to bed.

Wednesday, August 30, 2006

people who deserve a punch in the face

an interesting letter in today's "tell me about it" advice column:

Dear Carolyn:
I have a question about manners. I say on the Metro you should give your seat up for the disabled and the elderly. Last time I checked, women choose to have babies, therefore they aren't disabled. My friend says they should be afforded the courtesy. I think I'm already paying for them and their kids (i.e., school costs, time away from work). If you can't stand, don't get pregnant. Who's right?


D.C.

why even publish this garbage? i'm not sure what depresses me more, that this person exists, or that they exist in DC. if i had one bullet to spend today, i know where i would put it. sadly, Carolyn's answer ("try this, who's kind?") kind of sucked...so where do i start?

"if you can't stand, don't get pregnant." um, ok, so let's let this asshole get a seat on the metro, and let the human race comes to a standstill!
i'm sure if women had one choice, they would choose that men carry babies for 9 months in their abdomens. in fact, i would choose that macho asshole in particular be the one to gestate a fetus for 3/4 of a year. though wouldn't it be an interesting topic if this woman in question lived in South Dakota? not sure she'd have much of a choice to do anything.
when you consider such a perspective of inhumanity in today's context human suffering, it's really no surprise that every day is riddled with the digsuting events of another war. i'm going to go vomit now.

Friday, August 25, 2006

NYT: DC is dicey

so the NY times travel section has a little weekend in DC article on where/what to do for 39 hours in the capital. i always try to read guidebooks and stuff for my city to get some more outside perspective on my home town, or find new places to go. (sadly, there don't seem to be that many, DC often feels pretty small)
anyway, there are some good suggestions, drinks on the roof of the Washington Hotel, who knew? Al Crostino on U street that i've always wanted to try, though i suspect now it will be full of snooty new yorkers. the NYT has a knack for 'ruining' places like that. in my experience it happened in very rural france, seeing my quaint neighborhood joint get overrun by boisterous english speakers- it's a sure sign it passed in the Times.
but my main point here was that it was sorta depressing to read that the 9:30 club is stated to be in a "dicey" neighborhood. sad, but true. there was also a cold warning to watch your back when visiting the mall and monuments at night. is this really what our city has come to? alas, given the recent crime emergency and spate of muggings, it seems yes. it fills me with both disappointment and rage. i practice my roundhouse kicks to the solar plexus every time i i imagine some loser invading my personal space to steal my razr phone, which, you can totally get for free pretty much anywhere. why do thieves always steal old crappy cell phones? i had a broken old nokia once that disappeared from a bar. is there really a market for these? do they recycle the batteries into gems or send them to asia to finance a drug war? and uh, i'm going to cut off service pretty much immediately after i send it a few scathing text messages, and maybe trace the phone calls from my bill so it's really not much use to the criminal seeking to hide his steps. and doesn't everyone have a gazillion minutes these days, what's so valuable about stealing someone else's cell when you most likely have your own (seriously, who doesn't have a cell these days) or, as a last resort can probably just ask to borrow a phone for a quick call? it doesn't come with the threat of jail time, or my signature roundhouse kick to the solar plexus, either.

Thursday, August 24, 2006

the sound of one hand clapping...

ok, today i am sitting in my [piece of shit] cubicle [that i finally asked to be moved out of] and from deep inside me i had a thought. i should listen to paris hilton's new CD online. brain, stop it. stop clicking, put down the mouse. what do you think you are doing?

i've actually listened to the whole thing. some songs twice. um, there's a moral to this story somewhere...it likely has to do with coming to work still quite possibly drunk slightly before noon(asylum's 15th anniversary party. naughty nurses and stripper poles. kick yourself for missing it).

is this a sub-conscious self-flagellation? someone please tell me this is me, telling myself i shouldn't close bars on wednesday nights, drink sparks until sunrise and play frisbee in the street, have the police say "stop throwing that frisbee ma'am" over their megaphone [too lazy to get out of their car?], run to another street, lose the frisbee in the gutter and then open a manhole cover, order my boyfriend to reach in and grab it with his feet. he did.

so my favorite line so far is "if you think you're sexy clap your hands."

Monday, August 14, 2006

pizza the size of your face

the pizza available to adams morgan revelers never ceases to amaze me and this phenonemon is a favorite topic of discussion... i hear one slice packs like over 1,000 calories. but that's not why i won't touch the stuff. no, it's because on my first weekend in DC, when i had just moved in and experienced the late nite post-last call hunger pangs, i lined up at the place i like to call the "disco slice. it's the one that's lower down on the strip, across from kalorama that boasts loud techno music, sparkly walls, dancing billboard guy, strobe lights...enough to give you a seizure. we had exited pharmacy bar and my roommate from north carolina and i were in no way going to wait on this extraordinarily long line. we pooled our resources together: her big boobs and perfect smile and my 5 dollar bill. she approached our prey, an inebriated gentleman with not one, not two, but three huge slices of pepperoni pizza. the transaction was quick and effortless and as we cheered our achievement - yes, at the time buying a huge greasy slice of pizza for 3 times what it's worth, while degrading ourselves before someone likely from virginia was worthy of celebration. in our haste of jumping and hugging and wooooing i inadvertantly dropped the weighty slice and as luck would have it, fell right onto the sidewalk, cheese side down.
our smiles quickly faded to desperation, we don't have any more money! we're starving! the other patrons cum spectators quickly chanted "5 second rule!! 5 second rule!!" and without thinking, i picked up the slice, leaving a puddle of grease upon the mottled sidewalk, inspected it quickly for hypodermic needles and cigarette butts and to the raving shouts and applause from our adoring fans took a huge bite. it was unexpectedly smooth and sorta tasty, as opposed to crunchy with sand and glass shards, offering validity to the rule so many of food droppers live by. as we stumbled home my roommate and my conscience made me promise to never eat a slice of that pizza ever again. every time i walk by i feel a cringe of regret from that night, and to this day, i have abided.

Wednesday, August 9, 2006

chip off the ole block

cruising around for somewhere to ditch my car this am, i run into a friend who points to a tight spot she saw down the street. "knowing you, you'll make it fit!" she said. and that's how my most super awesome morning began, with this totally sweet rockstar parrallel parking job:

now sure, you buzzkills out there will tell me that i'm just gonna get bumped by either car when they leave. well i tell you, that's what bumpers are for. on my way to my office tho, i saw the asshole who yesterday took the last two spaces on the street, right in front of me as i waited for one of them. i told him he needs a serious lesson in parking from my dad, as well as some extra good karma to prevent the next angry person from keying his piece of shit camry.

i get it from my dad. last time he came to visit he barely listened to a thing i said all during dinner, he had this wide grin on his face and any response to my relationship troubles, job stories would be met with his explanation on how he bypassed the laws of physics (which he knows quite a bit about) and shoved his rented chevy malibu between two massive suvs. finally, after dinner i agreed to the detour to view how incredible his parking feat was. and holy shit, i was pretty impressed. told all my friends about it too. we were both bummed when the car behind him left, erasing his greatest achievement and making him look like an asshole for hugging the car in front.

i'll always remember it tho. because kick-ass parking runs in our genes!

Saturday, August 5, 2006

grand theft cello

Where to start: chronologically, or by level of insanity? Or the order in which this all gets diffused from my sleep deprived, alcohol infused brain:

Let’s set the scene:


It was 2 pm, on the hassidic jewish version of the chinatown NY-DC bus which was idling outside Penn station, midtown. As the Jeff Spicoli wannabe who had made everyone roll their eyes at his loud cell phone calls to his “bros and babes,” and wore the impossibly ironic shirt bearing the slogan: “yes, I’m THAT guy” later attested:
it was a friendly bus.

Indeed.

In fact, I had befriended most of the passengers on the way up to NYC on Friday, a side-effect of being stuck on large immobile object for more than 7 hours. Well, most everybody, THAT guy, later renamed as “bro-ski” remained on my hate list well into the weekend. When the bus re-fueled somewhere in New Jersey after nearly depleting its reserves in the 4 hours it took us to reach i-95, we were all on a first name basis. There was my cute seat neighbor, whom I ended up exchanging texts with all weekend, not as much for his cutey phD student puzzling-solving intelligence (I got him hooked on samurai sodoku in Delaware) but for his confidence, which he oozed – which I can now identify as the all-time most important thing I look for in people. Plainly put, I realized that its confidence that will protect me from seething jealousy, people who read my email or accuse me of egregious immoral behaviour, etc…and its that small thing we take for granted that was sorely lacking in my last relationship, but I digress…

the reason why everyone approach me to make conversation was not because of my stunning good looks or affable personality, nay, it was because I was travelling with my monstrous stringed instrument, “the big guitar?” they always ask. No, it’s my cello, securely stored in a big bright taxicab-yellow case, the reason for which I always tell people who ask, “why a yellow cello case?” is because it rhymes, and because if someone were ever to run off with it, I could see them a mile away, laugh, because as if that would ever happen.


So there I was, rather content to leave new york, after a drama packed weekend worthy of a WB sitcom (specific stories to follow). I tried to relax into my seat as our bus driver simoultaneously scolded us for “keeping a big black man from his sunday night collard greens” if we were to mess up his bus, and professing his love for Reese Witherspoon – the absence of votes for a movie prompted a dictatorial decision to watch “Just Like Heaven.” Groan. But I found satisfaction in that my weekend trip was successful in its mission to procure two simple things: bagels and shoes. The smell of a dozen fresh sesame and egg bagels emanated from my bag and I was admiring my feet perched in their new 4 inch platform shoes that put me among the tall people whenever I so desire. And let us not forget my new Nicole Richie gigornous sunglasses which are begging to go out to brunch.


As the bus filled up, I was joined by a familiar pal from the trip up (though I did call him and his friend dicks for getting a cab before I did on Friday), we eagerly exchanged our stories: my 911 call to help an epileptic stalkerazzi fan at my gig for his bachelor party bachanalia. As my new friend’s stories grew tiresome, not helped by his obviously hungover drawl, I just happened to notice that the baggage door had been opened on the street side of the bus. Odd. A man, seemingly dressed as a bus driver rustled through the luggage contents, moving things, supposedly securing them for our trip. I then peered down at the familiar edge of my adorable yello cello, who served me so well the night before.

As the man went out of view, I quickly turned to the reflection of the bus in a clean-windowed building across the street, and noticed this man was walking away with my cello. Clearly, he was putting it in a safer compartment, perhaps bringing it onboard as I had asked when I made my reservation? But wait, this man was neither a hassidic jew, nor our bus driver, who is here in front of me telling us how much he likes Popeyes but despises Bojangles as much as loud passengers. I glanced furtively into the rearview mirror of the bus: this man was running away with my $18,000 instrument.

I don’t recall how I exited, I really think I went through the walls of the bus, just like Reese did all throughout that really shitty movie, but my feet were no longer wearing delicate tall heels, these were rocket shoes that weren’t even hitting the ground, I wasn’t breathing, I wasn't hearing anything, I was sprinting waaay faster than Carrie Bradshaw in her manolos running after Big, I was fucking flying at this guy like I was crouching tiger, or hidden dragon.

It could have been the incessant slur of obscenities which deserve never to be written or repeated ever, or the look of maternal rage of a mother bear without her cub on my face that literally made this guy drop everything on his person put his hands up and start crying, I will not know. Within seconds bachelor boy was holding this obviously mentally disturbed man as he started apologizing and cowering in fear, as my own silly (what if he had a gun?) adrenaline-rush turned similarly to tears and whimpers.

And soon the hassidic busmen surrounded us as we tried to make light of this situation. Someone told me I needed to call the cops. I didn’t even have to dial 911- all I had to do was hit fucking re-dial from the night before and once again, I was surrounded by law enforcement within seconds, love that nyc response time.

there was snot, oh the familiar snot from this fall, teeming from my nose as I tried to explain...this guy, took my baby, and holy shit, I just stole my fucking cello back...I stole my cello back.
When I took my baby back into my arms at the Mcpherson square dropoff, I saw a couple point to me and whispher:

“that’s the infamous cello.”

if you can't get laid at whole foods...

...you need to see a doctor."

such was professed at the p street whole paycheck at the sunday afternoon peak shopping/cruising time, when my brother and i stopped in for lemonade. he doesn't get out much on his one day off and this is how i acquiesced in his request to "go outside, see and be around people, maybe ogle some trim."
seriously, i bet you at least a dozen new couples form every month right near the olive bar. or maybe your hand brushes against someone else's as you dive your toothpick in for a fifth stabbing of goat gouda. i tell anyone who is single that they should spend at least an hour there each week, helping people discern what isn't organic - have you noticed all the lemons now are labelled "conventional?" yeah, that means it's not organic, people. read: pesticides; same ole shit you buy at safeway. neither are the avocados or potatoes. yet yer still paying organic prices. pretty clever. they have organic onions tho. ooooh, wow, onions.
so in the end i guess what you really pay for then is the chance to fall in love. if even briefly with the godlike creature who's buying bulk cashews. yum.

Thursday, August 3, 2006

i suck at arm wrestling

first of all, i'd like to preface this by saying that arm wrestling in french is called "bras de fer" which translates to "arm of iron." awesome.

so, for some strange reason, i have been doing a lot of arm wrestling lately. the first competition was inspired by the roller ladies at asylum who were hosting an arm wrestling fundraiser one saturday. i was out with my new roommate who, interestingly enough, is a fitter version of me...thin, curly hair, jewish looking. on the first eve of her new residency, it seemed approrpriate that an arm wrestle would set the stage for the house, who's more kick ass, who's gonna empty the fucking dishwasher. the back of my hand was in a sticky puddle of bourbon in about 10 seconds (actually, a vodka-bourbon concoction we were testing that came out of a friend's nose). out of nowhere these pulsating python bicpes humiliated me in front of all my friends as she sheepishly said, well, i work out a lot. the skinny ass waitress came to console me and someone convinced her to step up. no problem. even after tiring a bit from my first competition there's no way this girl has the arms. alas, she refused to go lefty (not fair!) and just as quickly if not quicker, thrashed my hopes of victory. after people tried to buck me up, i ambled home with my stronger apartment mate, shoulders sore, vowing to never let that happen to me again.
i've since been hitting the gym at lunch, pumping iron, doing pushups with "eye of the tiger" in my headphones. and it just so happens that last tuesday i was drinking at the red and the black on H street and this busty sword swallower walked in and recruited me for their female arm wresling tournament at the new palace of wonders. you're on. i quickly downed my drink and my posse of trainers eagerly escorted me next door. we entered with whoops and hollers and my pals quickly massaged my shoulders and dispensed valuable advice wrist-breaking advice they had gleaned from a recent viewing of
over the top.
i was up against red sonia. a nice blondie obviously hailing from somewhere in upper NW, her sleeveless t showed no apparent threat. and it was on. i put up a damn good fight. i squeezed her palms, tried to spin her elbow, even snarled at her and as i hassled for a good 3 or 4 minutes while bar patrons screamed and hooted, i slowly lost energy and felt my inevitable defeat overcome me. and that's when it hit me. i have never won at arm wrestling. red sonia ended up winning the prize, so i didn't feel that bad. the emcee offered a lefty rematch for losers which i eagerly threw in 10 bucks for, but no one stepped up. were they scared? and that's when i realized...to this day i still have never lost a lefty arm wrestle. and if i do, well...i'll just start punching people in the face
.
lefty.

Wednesday, August 2, 2006

on crime, temperature

dc crime and temperatures are soaring. i have the following things to say.

on crime: it's pretty obvious...it's not more cops, just less cops sitting in their air conditioned cars accumulating powdered sugar in the creases of their uniforms and holding conference calls with their girlfriends. put them on foot. really, get them to mingle with the dudes on their porch who see everything go down, know everyone. get them to chat up the mango and empenada vendors, you know. if you need some mobility then fine, put them on bikes, i'll take bikes. but no segways. confine those to malls and airports because i'm sorry no one is getting any respect out of the ghetto when you're on a segway.

on temperature: ok, so it's pretty hot. yeah, i sweat and get a wee bit lightheaded if i walk too fast. but it's not crazy unbearably hot. i like the free bottles of the water at the silver spring metro, especially when handed out by those handsome uniformed gentlemen. rreow.
but have you ever been to africa? southeast asia? the caribbean? florida? those places are hot. damn hot. i reckon any given year there are a lot more people sweating and complaining around the world than in DC. have you ever had to go to work in Panama? in a long sleeved dress shirt? and you flag down a taxi but then he wants to charge you 5 times the going rate so you try to get another one, but he has three leering construction workers in the back and no a/c so then you give up and catch the bus, which is an old school bus packed to the gills with people, and only half the windows open and the back of your legs are stuck to the fake leather seat and the sides of your thighs are stuck to the lady next to you? you haven't?
well shut the hell up then.

Tuesday, July 25, 2006

office space

so i recently had the most blatant 'office space' day. one of the Toms who runs my division came up to me with his "i [heart] my scottish terrier" coffee mug and said, "yyyyyeah, i'm going to have to ask you to go ahead and change cubicles by 1pm today."
and thus, on the eve of my 5th anniversary of working here, i got evicted and dumped into the shittiest cubicle on the planet, one which is impossibly no more than 40% of the meager space i've occupied for 1824 days of my budding career. simple extension of my limbs and i can touch
either of the two walls that make my corner. this corner which, until noon yesterday housed broken printers and frayed printer cables. i swear i'm going to burn this place to the fucking ground. at least i have my stapler. good ole stapler.
but to make matters worse, after moving in, i took a quick survey of my new neighbors and met yarmulke guy with the thick glasses and curlz who enthusiastically welcomed me to his "little patch of paradise!!" with some stale candies; someone who's known as "Ari G," some chick who's last name is Golberg and another lady with a suspiciously large nose, unibrow and sideburns. i
smell something fishy. gefilte fishy. i'm not even jewish! (ok, so i have a pretty jewish last name), but still, these assholes are segregating me.
once again, i will blame hezbollah.

Monday, July 24, 2006

virginia sunday

it was a sunday out in virginia, a rare occurence for carless me, but it was an adventure to the arlington drafthouse to see "thank you for smoking" which made my two sundays-in-a-row movie run quite a success. anyway, after a post-movie round of disc golf we stopped at the 7-11 on carlin springs, as usual, where they have a new asian guy working there who is unbelievably hilarious. i would go in, just so you can hear him say in his high funny voice "WHENEVER!" which i think is his version of "whatever."
so i was standing there, sifting through a washington post, trying to not to wrinkle it too much to have to pay for it, when i'm suddenly shocked, mouth agape, as i am learning from the reliable source that a good friend of mine is engaged to someone he met 4 weeks ago. totally weird.
meanwhile, asian guy is telling my friend "do it with a man, do it with a woman, whenever..." another customer walks in to buy cigarettes and asian guy goes "are you over 18?"
and the guy chortles, "i'm 34, dude!"
"jeez, i'm just askin'. curious you know. whenever!"

i guess that's just how it goes in virginia. the place is strange i tell you.

Saturday, July 22, 2006

they're all the same: crazy

so a friend of mine has been out of the loop this past week, likely due to non-stop back-to-back meetings (seriously, one meeting a month is plenty for me) and so she asks me, "[aurelgrooves], what's with all this lebanon/hezbollah stuff people keep talking about? i'm so embarassed i have no idea what's going on. will you please explain it to me?"
and so i figured the best way to convey the recents events of insanity that is destroying lives, cities and countries over there is to hit home with a western hemisphere metaphor.
so let's imagine there are these crazy people up in Canada, we'll call them Quebecois separatists. let's just say that one night, during their weekly pilgrimages to Plattsburgh, NY they had a few too many at the strip club and, i don't know, took a few roofied exotic dancers back across the border with them. okay, let's just say they took them as hostages in an attempt to bring attention to their cause: Quebec as a sovereign nation, free from the cripppling grip of the Canadian government (whatever).
so as soon as the strip club owner finds out, people start freaking and good old Dubya declares his right to defend his nation, because fuck, that's what nations do and decides to blow the shit out of Quebec City, Montreal and maybe Toronto for good measure, starting with airports, suburbs, civilian apartment buildings. next thing you know it's a full-out war, countries are evactuating their citizens quickly with little advance notice while the americans, well they take their sweet ass time. and Quebec City, which was once a vibrant edgy modern city plunges back to colonial war times. and so that's pretty much it. (and you should really stay tuned to the Daily Show to comprehend just how insane it is).
"thanks! i totally get it now!"
no problemo, that's what i'm here for.

Thursday, July 20, 2006

movie cures hangover

so usually, when really hungover on a sunday i'll wake up whoever is on the couch and go out for brunch, usually at asylum where we drink bloodys, buy hours of gangsta rap from the jukebox to offend other patrons and hope the re-buzz eliminates the headache. it often works like a charm. then, we'll either hit a friend's pool or play frisbee golf, but both of these ideas are active and require energy, motivation and a little craziness on a hot summer day. so yesterday, we determined a movie was the way to go.
we exited asylum to find some older tourists checking out the menu. "it's awesome, you should eat here" i said to their eager smiles, as i internally giggled at the f-bomb infested playlist i left in our wake. then, i got tackled by a stupidly tall friend who tried to wrestle my bag from me. a girl in a short skirt had to step over my sprawled body on the sidewalk and when she did, uttered the snottiest, "um, yeah. seriously?" whatever. we walked down to dupont circle, at which point i ordered my one pretty muscular friend to take his shirt off. because it's dupont afterall. and i enjoyed smacking him and attempting to induce my turkey-shaped hand imprints on all available skin space.
we arrived just in time to catch a scanner darkly.
my friends had wanted to see it last weekend, and insulted me repeatedly when i couldn't find the showtime because, duh, it wasn't out yet. anyway, i will say it is one of the finest movies i've seen in a long, long time. you take a handful of vonnegut and a handful near-futuristic conspiracy theory and a handfull of groovy animation and WHAM! smash it all together.
i was worried said animation would freak me out but it didn't. you could recognize the actors in this weird way, like hey, that's winona ryder, is she blonde? keanu reeves might just be hotter in animated form...i was loving the way he moved. and the dialogue was utterly fantastic. maybe because robert downey jr. and woody harrelson's characters who reminded me of myself and my dufus friends, who think physical violence (see: sidewalk wrestling) is funny, and we're always getting into weird illogical arguments for no other reason than to humour ourselves and offend others. e.g: the brunchtime topic of: is it ok to eat your own shit? what about someone else's?

afterwards my roommate, who didn't see the movie asked me and one male friend to define the plot in simple terms to test her hypothesis, the theory that: men and women interpret sci-fi movies completely differently, likely due to hormonal or innate brain differences. and after extensive experimentation (n=1) we concluded, it's true. my friend and i each explained what seemed like barely related movies and then got into a heated debate about what keanu was actually thinking, why everyone did what they did etc... it went on for a while and then i just ended it by performing my most extreme super awesome cannonball, soaking everyone in vicinity of the pool and ceasing all scanner darkly-related conversation, bitches. because all tense conversations can, and should be ended with cannonballs.

Saturday, July 15, 2006

double entendre

so one of the construction trucks at the columbia heights construction mess boasts a clever phrase on its side: "satisfaction guaranteed with every steel erection." hehe. what are they really trying to say?

the skeevy intern

yes, i have a 46 year old intern....i'm not being harsh when i describe him as a balding little troll with brown teeth. i was briefly introduced to him on his first day here and thankfully never saw him again until he apparently irked everyone with both his personality and his incompetence to the point that finally someone said "why don't you go down the hall and talk to aurelgrooves, maybe she can give you some work to do." thanks losers.
i offered several projects he could assist with to which he replied, "no offense, but that sounds kind of boring." listen dude, you're an intern. secondly, this is what we do. and fuck you for calling my work boring. and here's when i made it clear that i'm not too happy about it either, but it's part of life. you get a few months of fun work followed by a lot of months of boring crap and you just have to deal. welcome to life. welcome to government work. and welcome to me, grumpy. don't piss me off.
anyway, i finally got him to do something slightly less boring, and if he had any brains or cleverness, he would have found a shortcut like i usually do, finished the job in an hour and then sat back and read blogs all day. but no. he's truly an idiot. i'm now kicking myself for having given him this project because every two minutes he's in my cube asking, stupid questions he could answer himself if he had any capacity to learn...he asks in his nasally new jersey accent, "there's a box that comes up. should i click it?"
what does the box say
"it asks if i want to overwrite the existing file.
"well, i don't know, do you?!
"ummm"
and to avoid what will inevitably be a 12minute explanation for something really trivial, i get up, walk across the hall, down the stairs and zig zag through cubicles to find his computer displaying the lingering overwrite question box. i cancel and look through his files and there are about 150 of them, all named things like:
test1
test2a
box_test
polygon
type filename here
my_file
...etc...

i let out a big sigh, thinking about the 26 page manuscript i'm in the middle of finishing for a deadline in two hours, and simply can't find the energy to deal with this guy. i ask him to explain his strategy, what he's trying to do and why he's using this method when i'm confronted with his inability to start and end a sentence. like with nouns and verbs and stuff? no, he just talks jibberish in interwinding circles, interjecting phrases and can't seem to explain a single thought in his head...
were you a banker before or something? and decided to go back to grad school? my inner monologue is urgently questioning his career change.
finally, instead of trying to teach him, or letting him figure it out for himself, i run the thing, click here and there...voila.
he turns to me with this way-too-sincere leery "thank you."
totally grossed out, i turn to leave.
"no really, i have never seen anyone work so deftly and as fast as you."
uh thanks
"and can i say something, i mean, i'm happily married. i just want to re-iterate that. i'm happily married" something he has already stated several times, almost daily. he points to a picture of a woman whom i presume is his wife (poor woman) and then continues into a 15 minute string of compliments on my eyes.
"your eyes are just stunning. so green! i love it when you wear glasses. has anyone ever told you that" at this point, i'm shuddering and holding back the bile in my mouth trying to humour myself at the fact that he's using the classic french pickup line "t'as de beaux yeux, tu sais" (which i think comes from this movie) when i'm contemplating either dialing human resources to report this pervert or just escape into the sounds of the cubes surrounding me which are quite obivously suppressed laughs and giggles. i can recognize the snickers of the center fielder from my softball team whom i just want to whack with my notebook.
if this is sexual harassment, this is the most pathetic example. i would much rather be hit on by the hot guy in IT. nevertheless, HR is on my speed dial, and you know what, i'm going home and derive a plot to humiliate this guy. and at least the latinos who whistle at me on the street have a friggin' sense of humour.

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

the portrait gallery...is FREEZING

i went to the portrait gallery last week, apparently on the same day as Karl Rove was there. my stepfather knew the names of every president without even looking at the desciption "that's James Monroe!" like he had one of those presidential rulers in his pockets, while my mom would say "Ulysses Grant waz president?" i'm pretty sure we covered the whole place despite its size. my favorite tho was the modern stuff on the top floor. the william wegman exhibit was surprisingly clever, and not only pictures of dogs, though they were surely one of the hi-lites. i loved his sketches and plays on words, which reminded me a lot of the natalie dee cartoons i check out every day.
but what's up with the guards not letting anyone take pictures? i understand if flashes are prohibited...but i have seen a lot of pictures on the web, so were these hidden cameras carried by criminals or what? you may have seen a lot of shots of the intricate scaffolding of the unfinished glass roof though, which i guess is legal to capture. i spent almost a half hour at this window, i couldn't stay any longer however, because my fingers and toes were numb after my desperate search to find a thermostat to turn the senseless air conditioning down. i swear i could see my breath, save the ozone layer people! after reaching near hypothermia, we retreated from the encroaching glaciers to a cafe patio in the sun and 90 degree heat and humidity, ordering hot toddies to regain feeling in our limbs.

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

have you heard this yet?

my all time favorite group, zero 7 has released another stunning album:it features the usual suspects, plus jose gonzales, which surprised and enthralled me in the first track. a few months ago, i just happened to come across him on myspace, and the song of his that i adore is 'crosses,' which is remixed and featured at the end.

i listened to it all last week and couldn't stand to be interrupted so when my 45 year old skeevy intern (yes, someone unloaded the creep onto me, and it's obvious why) came in to bother me like he does every five minutes i perfected the universal sign for "i can't hear you!" which goes like this:

1) shake your head in a "no"

2) point to your blaring headphones

3) shrug and turn around

so this album is a wee bit different than the others, a really new sound which reminds me a bit of stereolab. each song is a little weird and unique, but blend wonderfully together for a really great album you should hear all the way thru. i left the CD in the stereo for my roommmate (we put little 3 CD mixes in for eachother, picking each one to play in order so when you press power, you always have a nice surprise in store - i picked zero 7 to go with madonna's 'music' adn rjd2 to finish off) but it turns out her favorite song is mine too: "pageant of the bizarre" which has a few different parts (the take a chance on me segment is excellent), we also just love the first lyrics, which perfectly describe both our lives:

It's never gonna be

Normal, you and me

What you're signing on for

Is a storm at sea

so true.

Monday, July 10, 2006

i have a drinking problem?

this weekend i went to 7 different bars and got kicked out of three. two incidents involved cake. in my face. there were mexican wrestling masks and frisbees. i lost my ATM card. if i piece together the fragments of my memory correctly, we were at a bar and one friend shows up out of nowhere with some birthday cake. my roommate smashes it into my face and deep into my ear and as i wipe my eyes, i see the innocent cake-bringer getting ushered out the door by a team of bouncers. i waved from inside as he tried to argue his case. the bartender then turns to me, "all of you need to clean up that mess and leave right now."
i respond, "i completely 100% agree with you....can i have 5 irish car bombs?" and that's the last time i saw my ATM card.
you know that verizon commercial, the one with the guy on the bus who says "you, turn up the music, and you, shake your junk!" well i also vaguely recall one of my friends who as often as possible leads me to such disaster shouting, "hey you! drink that shot, and you! make out with aurelgrooves." and that's how i ended my saturday nite lip wrestling some very, very young dude. the most eerie feeling was coming back the next day to inquire about my missing card and have all the bartenders and bouncers smile sleezily as they now know me, my name and what they think i'm all about...bad, bad alcohol. great, great, weekend...

Wednesday, July 5, 2006

who are they calling freaky?

yes, i saw my first DC july 4th fireworks from a ghetto rooftop in NE.
far more fascinating were the dudes blowing up huge firecrackers across the street...at a gas station. it was all very baghdad. nonetheless i'm very happy no one grabbed my shoulders and pretended to push me off the ledge to scare me, because i hate it when people do that, and because it was a rickety rooftop, and because my legs were dangling over the edge, and because i was pretty drunk.

Saturday, July 1, 2006

bad ideas: sake bombs and russial roulette

on friday nite, i was introduced to the sake bomb on perry's roofdeck. the whole idea is definitely good fodder next time i go out for sushi with my parents. i wholeheartedly approve of the methodology, the precarious balancing of the sake cup on the chopsticks over a beer, and a hulk smash of the table to drop it in, the fizzle, and the chugging. and the agility involved should be a safeguard against overdrinking - i.e. if you don't have the coordination to set the next shot up, then you're not drinking it. the ultimate 'check and balance.' what i had not anticipated however, was the brazen lack of fiscal responsibility that overwhelmed me, after three courses of sushi, enough beer bottles and sake to cover the table twice over, when i picked up the half-grand check for our table of six: me and 5 much wealthier-than-me gentlemen.

it seemed like the odds were definitely in my favor for a little credit card roulette.

as a waitress, i always wanted to choose someone's demise, this seemed like a wonderful opportunity to risk the game. think about it - there was only 1/6 chance that my card would actually get picked, and if it did, well, i'm the one cute, broke girl with all these guys in ties or linen shirts- clearly their chivalry would prevail and save me. so we threw the deck into someone's hat, called the waitress over and let the games begin...one by one...a male name was called. my blood pressure dropped as each dude stoop up and cheered, high fived the others. the waitress calmly pulled out everyone's card, ultimately being saved the arduous task of pronouncing my unpronounceable name. as she held up my bank of america debit card (that money is so gone!) to take to the register i looked desperately to my dinner mates who replied "well it was your idea to go out for a fancy dinner!" and the truth was spoken.
yes, as a matter of fact, it was my idea, after retrieving one of my friends at the airport in his suit, i suggested that we use his style to our advantage get some grub somewhere other than the asylum for once. i was my idea to match his stylin' and dress in heels and a fancy new necklace for a night out on the town. and dammit, it was my idea to play credit card roulette. i curse you, sake bombs!

BUT, like everything, there's the positive side. i take this to be an investment strategy, like how as a rule, i always buy the first round of drinks of the night and subsequently get the rest of my night's drinks paid for because "i bought the first round, remember?" guarantees at least the next six...which is a very economical plan. as such, i intend on working my debt out of each any everyone of them...with interest...for a good long time...(remember perry's? i need another maker's on the rocks...) and in the end, i will prevail. really.