Saturday, May 31

Home Alone

Sometimes being alone is okay, soothing even. Left to my own devices, I went to the bookstore, a beloved sanctuary. Before Tom and I were married, and we were working like crazy and putting all our money in the bank - we would go to the bookstore as a free date. We would sit smashed together on couches or chairs and read for hours.

Another positive attribute bookstores have, unlike libraries, is the possibility of shopping, buying, purchasing, acquisitons! I love nothing more than to buy a book, read it, and add it to our rather massive personal collection. People are always giving books to me - saying "I've already read it, you can have it." How can they stand it? I am a book pack-rat. I love to see the books in piles around the house; by the bed, on the floor, crowded on the bookshelves, stacked on the dresser. Nothing makes a house a home like books and more books.

I browsed around and bought some new reading material. The three Mary Roach non-fictions ("Stiff," "Spook," and "Bonk") and a bargain book "Labyrinth" by Kate Moss (only $6.98!)

I returned to my empty nest with my additions (after a failed attempt to get a pedicure) and curled up on the couch under blankets for reading and t.v. watching; general vegging. The house is still. I can hear birds outside and the sunshine filters in through the blinds. I'm waiting for Tom to come home, and I'm enjoying the wait.

A fabulous afternoon.

Friday, May 30

Not Gone Fishin'

Well, Tom is going fishing tomorrow morning. I can not think of a stupider activity to do on a Saturday morning. There are several things wrong with fishing.

- Firstly, I don't eat fish, therefore, I can not enjoy "the catch."
- But that doesn't matter, because I never catch anything.
- If I were to catch aforementioned uncatchable fish, I do not unhook/gut/clean/de-scale fish bodies.
- It's difficult to unhook imaginary fish because I don't like baiting my hook in the first place.
- Why? Because I don't like hooks.
- I don't even like just "going along for the fun of it" because I hate being by the water because of the bugs, sun, mud, sweat, and so on.

Leading me to the only viable conclusion: fishing is stupid and I hate it. End of story.

Thursday, May 29

A Very Lovely Life

Carrie Bradshaw once had a problem with roof chickens. They wouldn't stop crowing. However, when the veterinarian tells her that the roosters (not chickens...because "they are roosters - roosters crow") were rescued from a cock fight in the city, Carrie changes her mind about demanding they be moved into the basement.

"They had all that fight trauma," Carrie says.
"Don't worry," assures Beautiful Indian Vet, "they have a very lovely life."

I often think about this statement because it describes how I feel about my own life. My existence is quiet and simple. And I also find continuous pleasure in friends, family, and living it up on the town. I am surprisingly content, and that, in and of itself, makes me happy.

So, I liken myself to a roof chicken...with a very lovely life.

Wednesday, May 28

Mad About Madonna

I absolutely love Madonna's new cd. "Hard Candy" is best for getting pumped to go to the gym, getting pumped to go to work, or getting pumped up while driving - really, for getting pumped up about any random thing that comes your way. The music makes me want to get up and dance (which I often do) and play the cd repeatedly. Rush out immediately and buy it. I also recommend Madonna's "Confessions on a Dance Floor." Simply alternate these two cds for non-stop rhythm to rock out and dance to. The perfect ingredient for a fantastic summer.

Tuesday, May 27

A Short List

Briefly, seven things I hate:

1. Potholes
2. Dirty elbows
3. Fuzzy television
4. Tangled sheets
5. Unmatched socks
6. Dull razors
7. Limbo

Monday, May 26

The Three Tenors

The Baird reunion is always held on the same weekend. I haven't gone for a few years, but as we are soon leaving the country, I figured we had better go. I remember most of the names of my grandpa's 7 brothers and sisters, but not all. Two, in particular, stick out in my memory.
They are my other two grandpas. As a young child, I would often confuse them with my own grandfather because they looked so similar. They all wore the same Dickie jumpsuits. They were all bald. They all had large ears. Seeing them this weekend, however, was bittersweet because I haven't seen them since Grandpa's funeral last March.

When we pulled up to the trailer spot, my husband said, "Look, there's your grandpa." Uncle Tom was sitting at the picnic table with my dad. I sort of shrugged and smiled and said, "Yeah." But Tom, for as nice of a substitute grandfather he makes, is not mine. He is more rotund. He has diabetes. He has a heart shunt. His hair is completely white. Later, we see Uncle Bob - the other grandpa look alike. He is also not Grandpa. He is deaf. He plays the harmonica, guitar, and fiddle.

I do love the greatest similarity between these three brothers: their tenor voices. Grandpa used to sing with me, his voice grown only a little wobbly with age:

"Mares eat oats, and does eat oats, and little lambs eat ivy. A kid'll eat ivy too, wouldn't you?"

He eventually stopped singing because he couldn't hear himself or the choir, and his two brothers have stopped for the same reason. Sometimes, when I am sad, I close my eyes and think about the three of them reunited; camping in their trailers, singing together around the fire. The stars are out and I am curled in my grandfather's lap, listening to the melody climb to the heavens.

Sunday, May 25

The Forgotten Part

People are always paying attention to other people's - and their own - teeth. Are they white? Are they straight? What size and shape?

But what about gums?!?

Gums should be tight, hugging the tooth, and light pink in color. They should not be puffy, red, or loose around the base of the tooth. I pride myself on my fantastic gums. I became obssessed with flossing at a young age. I remember, with great fear, sitting in the dentist chair as the hygenist flossed in between my young teeth. Afterward, my entire mouth ached - like I'd been punched in each individual tooth. The feeling was delicious.

Flossing rids the mouth of microscopic food particles that can not be reached with brushing. Said particles are wiped away from the gum, preventing disease and infection. Proper flossing allows toothpaste and mouthwash to flow into the cracks between teeth and up around the root of the tooth. Without this preventative measure, gingivitis and periodontal disease slowly begin to rear their ugly heads. And with those diseases come continuous bad breath, tooth decay, loose teeth, pain, bleeding, and sensitivity. I am sure everyone would hate that.

So, please remember your gums and reach for the floss. I recommend Johnson & Johnson Mint Waxed Floss. It's easy on gums (especially for beginners) and tastes yummy.

Saturday, May 24


Lately, I am obsessed with accessories. I have multiple pairs of adorable earrings, billions of bangles, scarves, watches (for fashion purposes only, of course), funky rings...and I'm always searching for more. My pickiness means that I must keep a vigil lookout for any potential add-ons to my jewelry box.

And that addition will be a beautiful light-weight scarf. They are popping out at me everywhere I shop. The perfect accessory for summer; translucent yet vivid - a provocative slip around the neck. These are super 'in' this season, but I'm not sure I can a) find one I like; b) grow a larger space between my head and shoulders. How can I possibly choose a color? Especially when I take hours and hours to decide. I'm thinking that as soon as I start wearing one, I will want to wear one all the time. Does that mean I should buy hundreds? Or should I buy one staple and stick?

I most definitely want to get in on this breezy, summery, fabulous look I love. I suppose the best thing to do is get a scarf in size "super skinny" and stand tall.

Friday, May 23

Driving Instructions

My mother started teaching me to drive when I was 13. It started with backing the cars in and out of the driveway. Then, she let me drive on the back roads on the way home from Granny's house. I went through driver's ed and passed my test on the first try. I have never been in an accident. I have never received a ticket. I consider myself an adequate driver.
Of course, I have my flaws. I speed, follow a little too close, change lanes often, and listen to the radio really loud. But I have my history to back up the fact that I am, despite anything else, a successful driver. This is my opinon.

Tom disagrees - vociferously. I hate it when he critiques my driving. I don't say anything about the way he drives...even when he's flipping people off or refusing to let them in our lane. Why don't I say anything? Because I trust that he can operate a vehicle with competence. His driving style may differ from mine, but a difference in type does not indicate incorrectness.

I have compiled a short list of reasons why he should, kindly, shut the hell up:

1. I have been driving longer than he has.
2. I state, again, the "no tickets, no accidents" clause.
3. I am more fun to drive with.
4. I always reach my destination in a safe and timely manner.
5. I can drive any way I fucking please.

If statistics can be belived, 50% of the population has an IQ below 100. I am the least of anyone's worries on the road.

Thursday, May 22


Cafe Rio makes the most delicious salad. I love eating it. Today is my day off and I have been decidedly unproductive. I was supposed to go to yoga. I was supposed to clean the house. I was going to take a shower. I was going to adhere religiously to my 500 calorie diet. Instead, I napped with Tom, completed a small load of laundry (which has yet to be put away), and went to Cafe Rio.

For those of you unfortunate enough to not have a Cafe Rio in your area, a Cafe Rio Salad starts with a fresh tortilla. This tortilla is topped with melted cheese. Throw in yummy lime-cilantro rice, black beans, guacamole, cilantro, romaine, and top with half creamy tomatillo/half lime vinagrette dressing. Ta da! A treat to blow your diet.

I start by mixing. And I mix and mix and mix until I feel that the salad is ready to be eaten. Then I use my knife and fork to eat bite size amounts until the salad portion hits below the top of the little metal container it comes in. Now I add in pieces of the tortilla with each bite until I'm done. And now I also weigh 2 pounds more. Oh well...

Wednesday, May 21

Old Home

The home of my childhood. I sit and watch my mother and father bicker back and forth - their way of showing love, I suppose. My dad sits in the lazy boy and my mom sits in the chair next to him. She is playing on her Nintendo DS. "Shit," she shouts out at random. "Why do they give you colors that they know you can't use?" Tom has spent the last hour and a half trying to set up my mom and dad's webcams. Of course, they each have their own individual laptop. They can not share. So Tom must go back and forth between the two of them attempting to help my computer illiterate father and distracted mother.
The webcams are going to be used for video calls when we are living in Shanghai. I am extremely excited and extremely nervous to leave them. My parents have three children; my thirty-three year old sister, me, and my eight (soon to be nine) year old brother. The catch is: my sister is mentally handicapped and so is my brother. And my brother isn't really my brother - he's my sister's baby whom my parents adopted because she (obviously) was unable to take care of him. I suppose the gist of all this information is that I am basically an only child. I can feel their unified need to have me close and the suffocation of obligation comes with it.

My family is unusually small. Both sets of grandparents are deceased. My mother is an only child. My father has two brothers; one single - no kids, the other deceased. Is it simple selfishiness to wonder, "What will they do without me?" Or is it the truth? I can't stay for them. But at the same time...I hate the thought of not being there for them.

Tuesday, May 20

Diet Coke

Diet Coke is the second love in my life. I typically start a can on my lunch break...where I am now. I know I won't finish this can, as I never do. So I will leave it out - warming to room temperature. I will sip it all through my meeting, and then sip it all the way home. I might finish the Diet Coke tonight, but if not, it will sit on the coffee table until morning when I will drink the last drop and crack open a new one. This can will last me until I go to work and start the entire cycle over again.

The taste of Diet Coke is sort of specifically vague. It doesn't really taste like anything, but it somehow tastes good. When it is cold and bubbly, it is a little harsh going down the throat - but not in a bad way. When it is warm, it is sweet and satisfying; the leftover carbonation giving the teeniest thrill.

Over the summer I left an unopened can of Diet Coke in my car. It exploded.

Now, I know all about how bad diet drinks are supposed to be for you. In fact, Tom and I were discussing this very aspect of Diet Coke today. I told him about how people give me so much shit for being a vegetarian and yet still drink tons of Diet Coke. And he told me they were right. But I must protest! Diet Coke helps me stay skinny...and what is worse? Being overweight? Or drinking some Diet Coke? Researchers say that the aspartame in diet drinks causes cancer. However, the whole truth is often omitted. The scientists came to this conclusion after they injected lab rats with amounts of aspartame equalling said lab rat's body weight. Leaving me asking myself: have I drank my body weight in aspartame? My guess is no, as I weigh a tremendous amount.
Long live Diet Coke!!!

Monday, May 19

The Template

I change my mind. After spending a cramped hour on the sofa (legs falling asleep and all) I have finally decided that I hate all available templates. Fuck you, Blogger.

The Blog

I love setting up my new blog. Choosing colors and fonts is like shopping for free!