Thursday, May 28, 2009

Day 81

Today was quite the recession day.

First of all I had a "pre-employment assessment" with a company I had applied for a while ago. The phone interview, was apparently, a success as they wanted me in to fill out an application, take this assessment and drop of samples, always a good thing.

So upon getting dressed for the interview I learn that my pants are essentially unhemmed on one leg, which is not going to work. So at the last minute I have to switch up the ol' interview outfit. E. said I looked nice when picking him up, so hopefully that is the case.

The test(s) itself was half super hard and half-think-I-did-okay.
The first part was picking out patterns in letters, and figuring which came next i.e. letter is???
Of course they were a lot more difficult than that.
After the letter section, I moved onto a graphic section.
Which I found more difficult.
Not feeling great after this section, I though the math part would be a welcome respite to the testing.
I was 100% wrong.
It was like the quintessential nightmare math question, except instead of two trains, it was two copiers printing at different speeds.
I'm pretty sure I got 95% of the questions I actually completed wrong.
And I can do basic algebra, but this was going beyond basic.
And apparently math is not like a bike, where you pick it up where you left off.
Because I know there was a time in my life where I succeeded at math when I actually tried.
Not so much the case here.
Then came the personality test!
I flew through that, as there are no right or wrong asnwers and just tried to answer honestly.
Then there was a vocab test, then business words/recall which was, interestingly enough a mix of basic business lingo (although I didn't know some of the words) and history (like what country is the Ayatollah Khomeni affiliated with? What is our space program called? When did we enter WWII?) Again I think I did okay on this section.
The last section was "Mental Alertness" which was where you were supposed to speed through it, that was like an amaglam of the previous word-y tests, so I think I did okay on that part.
Because I like words.
And trivia.
So I *should* hear something next week, like if they like me or if they don't.
If my math scores didn't scare them off completely.

Upon returning home, who should have left a voicemail, but company #1, that I've already had the second interview with. It's been almost two weeks since I've talked with them so I really wasn't expecting to hear from them. In typical Jj pessimistic fashion, I was expecting a "Thank you, but" letter.

Instead I was told that I was basically what they were looking for and everyone loved me, BUT (oh you knew this was coming, didn't you?) they can't (direct orders from above, which doesn't surprise me since my second interview was basically them asking me if I would be able to handle the owner, the elusive "she/her") until they hire a Sr. Copywriter. And I'm just interviewing for the wee Jr. Copywriter position. So I am in a weirdo limbo position, as she admitted that it is very slow-going in finding a Sr. copywriter, but that they would contact me as soon as they find someone.

Basically back to the drawing board, but through no fault of my own.
At least my interview skills aren't total pants.

And there is always paint to scrape off my walls, and weeks to pull out of my garden.

Day 80

Another glorious day of baseball.
It was rainy and dreary out.
I had to do all of the driving.
And the Brewers lost.
And no balls were caught.

The plusses?
I got a Cousins sub, which are my favorite, for some weird reason.
The game wasn't a complete blowout, although, I'm truly starting to feel for Manny Parra.
Now I've said before I'm not a fan of the quality start statistic, but I do feel bad for Parra.
The majority of his losses are due to him getting no run support.
And his earned runs came early in the game, he pitched 100+ pitches, which is no small feat.
In the end though, we lost the series to the Cards.
I only hope we do better against the Reds.
Because we need to win series.
You can't win every game, but series are the key.

After the game it was pretty much a dull day.
I couldn't work in the garden due to the rain/dampness.
Now before everyone jumps on me for not braving the elements let me explain:
1. I hate getting wet. Those who know me, know this about me. But I hate it. I hate showering, but do so out of necessity, I hate getting wet from the rain, I don't even own a swimsuit. I do however love thunderstorms.
2. I'm assuming that I have some mild forms of arthritis in my joints (especially my fingers/hands as I've sprained every finger at least once, and at least one of my wrists, if not both). So I can't be outside in cool/damp weather unless I'm dressed appropriately, which means like it's snowing out which is not conducive to working in the garden.

I can, however, honestly say I do miss working in the garden, with my radio a-blastin' and sweat a-dripping.

I was going to work on paint scraping some more since I've become inspired, or perhaps brain damaged from the lead paint I'm more than likely inhaling, but my hands (again with the hands!) are scraped from my last venture, and yes, a bit sore, again with the arthritis. Or whatever.
I'm an olds apparently.

But instead we did nothing of the sort.
I might have blogged, but don't remember, but I don't remember watching a lot of television either.
I apparently fell into one of the many black holes that occupy my house.
I made us some popcorn, our new favorite snack (a ton of servings is equal to the $$ of one bag of chips), and we took in some telly...I remember watching about an hours worth and then heading to bed.

Maybe it was the red wine I sipped through the True Blood (new eps start June 14!!!!) recap?
And it has been a while since I've drunk red wine.
And it was delicious.

Oh I've also started watching a new show called "Beautiful People" it's a BBC show that airs here on Logo, the gay channel.
But it's pretty funny I have to say.
Fey Brits are the best ones.
I will have to see if JT is watching.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Day 79

Sometimes it's a wonder at how much I can get done in a day.
Today we did a ridiculous amount of driving.
We were literally all over the city (North, South, East and West).
Spent more money than I meant to (as always), which just means we will be having a lot of english muffins this week, or grilled cheese.

The day begins with traveling to the East Side of Milwaukee so E. can do his tips and I can get some coffee. I bring my book, but hope that there is a crossword available.
There isn't, and I won't even tell you how miniscule the want-ads were.
This recession is pure bollocks, I tell you!
Maybe I WILL become a bartender after all!
Then I could start a new blog "Bartendin' Blues."
Cos that is the most ridiculously cliche title ever.
But still awesome.

Anyway, so we head to the Brady Street Supercenter, I read my book, take a look-see at the sports page, try to have some missed connections, and drink some coffee.

We then have to go to the UWCU tyme machine to deposit our StubHub payment! Yay for rich baseball fans! We help each other in this recession.
We are both hungry and decide to head to Beans & Barley for our most favorite vegetarian chili of all time. Upon entering we are ELATED to find the "Mozzarella Rustique" sandwich back on the menu! This is one of my favorite sandwiches of all time that had been sadly missed by yours truly. PLUS! There was another NEW mozzarella sandwich on the menu.
These both had to be tried.
In addition to the chili.
So what was going to be a $10 lunch, turned into like a $25 lunch.
But it was so delicious.
And I'm not gonna lie.
The knowledge that I can get that sandwich again.
Sweet sweet victory.
And it was definitely worth the mental elation it gave me.

Since we were generally on the side of town for Trader Joe's, we thought we should run out there to pick up a bag of lemons and limes. They are quite cheap, and my citrus-butter asparagus used up the last of the green and yellow citrons.
PLUS! A friend with a family farm has some asparagus to share AND we should be getting more from our fabulous crop share this Friday.
If you eat seafood, I would think the citrus butter would be equally delicious on that, but be warned: It's been a while since I've eaten seafood, so this is pure projection.
Recipe you ask?

Citrus Butter
1/4 cup fresh squeezed citrus juice (I used lemon and lime, but you could use whatever you like!)
3 tbs. of butter, chopped into chunks
  • Boil juice until reduced to about 1 1/2 tbs.
  • Pour over butter and whisk until combined
  • Add S&P to taste
  • Pour onto your favorite dish! (We did asparagus)
It most defs is yumzoes in your tumzoes.

After Trader Joe's we headed to the library. E wanted some books on plumbing, I wanted some books on container gardening.
But, the library was closed.
Apparently it opens at 1230 on some days.
Is this a joke?
Frustrated, we headed home because, well, we both had to go the bathroom.
And the next place on our list was the Habitat for Humanity Re-Store, which we needed the plumbing book for, hoping we could find something we needed there.
So we go home, E finishes his Steve Martin book, and we head back to the library.
Niether of us found anything we were really dying to have, but E. did pick out a book on plumbing, and we headed to the Re-Store.

Niether of of had ever been there, and we did not know what to expect.
It was amazing! I think what happens is that contractors drop off their extra stuff there, or donate the stuff they found in the house.
Things we wanted:
  • old stove for $500, it was electric, BUT it had a built in fryer (seriously!) AND it looked brand-freaking-new.
  • old sink, for $30 like my grandma used to have, would go quite well in my kitchen, if I do say so myself.
  • drafting tables! They were $30 each! I told E. we should get one and use it as an island in our kitchen.
  • brackets for $.50/each! This should be perfect for library dining room!
  • tiles tiles tiles! mostly colors you don't want, but LOTS of white ones so we could save at LEAST 50% off the price of tile when tiling the foyer.
  • doors, spindles, ugly cupboards, windows, furniture, TONS of stuff, we definitely will be going back
After our trip to our new favorite store, I found out E has some serious anxiety about the state of our downstairs walls.
We had about an hour before we had to meet my dad and his friends (including lady friend) at Conejito's so I decided to tackle the scraping of our stucco'd walls.

In all honesty I had about 1/4 of the wall done.
Are you ready to be shocked?
I got 3/4 of the wall done in an hour.
And I have the battle scars to prove it! AND I don't think We will even have to dry wall that part. If I can find some gloves I may continue on tonight.
And really oddly, I enjoyed doing it. There is some weird primal part of me that likes to do mundane things with her hands.
I'm not artistic at all, but I do love the task of pulling weeds (once I'm doing it) and sraping/peeling stuff. I'm sure this is indicative of something psychological with me, but what, I will wait for PO or JJ to tell me.
I WAS always really good at shop.

The game was awful, as Suppan pitched a doozy.
And I mean that in the Groundhog Day doozy.
Not in a pitchers' duel doozy.
E and I caught a foul ball!
I had never done that before! And it was truly a team effort:
The ball hit my scorebook that I was reaching out, bounced off of it, hit the ground and into E's hands.
Way to go us.
It was the highlight of an otherwise ridiculously poorly played game.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Day 78

Memorial Day.
Today is the day we remember...bleah bleah blah.
Is that incredibly callous of me to not want to watch all the God Bless America bs during the Brewer game?
You know what?
I don't think it is.
Plus I hate the Leann Rimes version.
Okay so I hate any version of that song. But at least with Bessie Smith I can sing along in my church voice.
And sometimes it will make my nephew laugh.
I don't hate America.
Okay so I would totally move to France or Canada or England if I had $$$ and I didn't have to quarantine my dog for 6 months.
But if we were truly having a Memorial Day there wouldn't be baseball. It would be a somber event.
And singing God Bless American during a baseball game, on your day off while you stuff yourself full of beer and brats, isn't really the most patriotic thing you can do.
At all.
Here is a fun fact for you:
During the years 1941-1945 5400 of the 5800 baseball players enlisted in the armed forces.
That is 93%
It was the one thing I learned during that awful Crew-Twins series where the announcers said that fact and then derided current players for not having commitment to their country like they did back in the day.
Which got me upset for a number of reasons.
Mostly cos they showed close-ups of the Brewers when criticizing the "current" players.
I don't think not joining the armed forces is lack of commitment to the country. I don't criticize people who do it, I worry about them, and I think it's unfair that our military is compromised of mostly poor fighters.
And don't get me started on the gay thing.
Not to mention, what war have we had in recent history that is "worth" fighting?
I could go on.
But I won't.
Because I'm purely emotion on this and not very factual.
And if you know anything about me, it's that I argue with facts, not whimsical notions.

Monday, May 25, 2009

Day 77

What happened to the previous 10 days you may be asking?
Oh I can tell you.
1. Gardening. I think I might have an official green thumb. Or at least one that will start to turn green. This is what I can talk to people now about.
My Lilies of the Valley are growing!
I have wild rhubarb!
My peonies are about to bloom!
My irises have buds!
My tomatoes haven't died!
We built a bed! (more on this later)

2. Baseball stuff! I have been following the Brewers like a dutiful servant of the game. Unfortunately we were just swept by the Twinks, and I'm quite worried about the Cards series that is coming up, but I'm hoping for the best.

3. Construction! It begins at 7:30 in the morning.
Whereas I used to blog about the days' event before retiring, I am now generally falling asleep on the couch in the 7th or 8th inning of the ball game.
Upon waking up I'm so groggy and crabby and full of dreams that I can't even wrap my mind around the previous days events. Plus I'm usually quite sore from previous days events.

4. Foster dogs! I have had my share of fosters this summer (even though it's not technically summer yet) and the last one, much like that step, was a DOOZY.
He had some housebreaking issues, which I'm pretty sure were related to his food, but didn't figure that out towards the end.

So as you can see, it's a volatile mix: no sleep, gardening aches-n-pains, baseball stuff!, cleaning up doggie mess (which actually has inspired me to refinish our least in the guest room, where the fosters stay).

I hope you will accept this blog as a "greatest hits" of the past 10 days of my life.
And as I get used to the wretched road construction, and the ungodly early hour it is causing me to wake up, I will try TRY to get the writing going earlier in the day, rather than late in the day.

To quote Coldplay/Johnette Napolitano:
"Nobody said it was easy"

Recession news:
I have no idea where I've left off with you guys so here is a recap.
I had a second interview with a company, last week Friday (May 15) and have yet to hear back from them. I'm hoping I hear SOMETHING this week, but I guess beggars can't be choosers.
I ALSO had a phone interview with a different company last Thursday (May 21). That went well as I will be going in THIS Thursday to fill out a short application, take a two hour long test (seriously) and drop off some samples.
So while it's not an interview, it's kind of like a pre-interview.
The position is for a Communication Specialist, the compay is like an insurance software firm.
BUT I'm pretty sure they would be accessible by bus AND their building is "green."
Green as in eco-friendly.
But it could be green in color.

In all honesty, I definitely like the "feel" of this company better than the other one, but I don't want to get my hopes up, and I may not be a good match according to them.
And they have the degrees in HR.
I just have a useless degree in English.

Which will make a nice segway to my next topic:
Extended family.
Baby shower for my cousin.
And most everyone is there.
I get to see BA (who I suppose, technically is my aunt, but was always more like a cousin, so it's weir to say "aunt") author of one of the blogs I follow: Good Times.
I get to see her mom, I get to see my aunt KB, and five of her six girls.
And you know, it's a pretty good time.
The aunts have finally gotten used to us being vegetarians so we always have food to eat.
This has been an issue before.
But in the past 5 years or so it's gotten TONS better.
So good news there.
And because the younger cousins are reaching that college age, that was discussed.
And something that has always bothered me, but I guess I didn't really realize it was this bad, until the party.
We're talking to my aunt, TB and her son ZB, who is a baseball player.
And I don't mean professionally, although that is a goal for him.
Apparently he is good, but I don't know if he is like "professionally" good.
I guess we will see if he gets a contract out of high school.
Which is what they are all hoping for.
Even the parents?
And TB says, "Well he doesn't really like to study. He's not good at it, so it would be better if he would just sign a minor league contract right out of high school."
To which I retort, "I don't like to work, but I have to. Because I have bills to pay."
TB then brings up Josh Hamilton who was drafted right out of high school.
"He became a heroin addict!" I say. Which is true and his comeback is the comeback of all time.
But what about the players that don't comeback? And I'm not saying they all become heroin addicts, but there are PLENTY of players that don't make it to the majors.
Which you know, hey, if I could play baseball for a living for $25G a year.
Sure I would do it.
Cos let's be real, that would be step-up from my current situation, and it wouldn't even be that big of a step down from my last situation....but lots of minor leaguers have second jobs.
E brings up the injury factor of going to college and if he gets injured then he's out.
To which I say "If he gets injured in the minor leagues he will have no life skills to get him a real job."
Because he doesn't have an after school job.
He has baseball.
Which is great. He loves baseball, the parents are supporting it, but, BUT how many kids want that? Wouldn't he be able to sate his lust for the game while going to school for sports journalism? Or business at least, so you know where your money is going.
Maybe I'm being highly pessimistic because I don't know if he truly is super-awesome-good and there will be scouts watching him in a year or two.
And maybe it's no different than E pursuing a degree in film, or me in English.
I guess I would just hope his parents would present all options, because we are still pursuing those things, but our hopes won't be shattered by a broken finger, sprained ankle.
I don't know. Maybe I don't know the baseball politics of it all.
I guess I was just shocked to hear that.
And let's not forget they have a daughter.
A daughter that completely gets overshadowed by her younger brother's baseball success.
Although the daughter herself is extremely talented (musically) you wouldn't know it talking to the parents.
In other extended family news, I got to share some vegan recipes with my aunt KB who is slowly weaning her family (her 8 person family) off of dairy, or has been for a while. They are not crazy about it, but I like her because although she is super-religious she will surprise me with asking me for vegan recipes, or talking about educational philosophy (she's a home-schooler and her kids are ridiculously smart and creative), which is great.

Gardentown USA:
Last weekend E and I decided to go through with a promise we had made to ourselves over the winter/early spring. We would try our hand at vegetable gardening.
Upon moving in we re-sodded the back yard, so we didn't want to un-earth (literally) all of our hard work doing that a couple years ago.

So what do we do?
Upon reading numerous magazines in my past, pre-recession life, I thought a raised garden bed would be a good idea. We had a spot right by the back of our house that up until this point we had always TALKED about making a vegetable garden, but it was basically a weed jungle. As E and I increasingly try to make better life/environmental choices we didn't necessarily want to use weed killer and then plant all of my organic seedlings. That seemed counter-productive.
So we saw some raised garden beds that seemed like a much better option.
One in Ready-Made magazine had us spending $400 on one.
That wasn't going to happen.
One in Better Homes & Gardens had us spending about $100 on a couple of small ones. While we were going to do quite a large bed, we liked this option better.
But truth be told, we didn't follow any plans.
In an effort to be "green" we bought old railroad ties, although I can honestly say I've never lifted anything so heavy in my entire existence. And I've moved alot.
The process went like this:
An early morning wake-up call as we had to go pick up the rental truck.
Our coffee grinder breaks so we have to do this sans caffeine.
Not a good morning.
We pick up the truck, stop at AC's Starbuck's and pick up some coffee.
Cue angelic singing here.
I go home to start weeding, and digging trenches for the railroad ties.
E goes to Menards to pick up railroad ties, wheel barrow, tools we need, and to rent a chainsaw.
He comes home to find me already digging which impresses him. We learn that Menards doesn't do tool rental, so after grumbling and almost dying and burning muscles of a lifetime, E heads to Bluemel's for the gravel, while I head to Home Depot to rent the chainsaw.
While renting the chainsaw, the guy asks me if someone will be helping me, which I take offense to, but whatever. I don't have a lot of upper body strength, so let's be real. I probably couldn't have started the chainsaw that he gave us myself, as E was having a ridick time starting it and turning it on.
I unload gravel as E tries to get the chainsaw going. After a mistake by me (presumably, although to this day I swear the guy told me to move the choke), we have to wait a half and hour to try to start it again, so it's more shoveling the gravel out of the truck.
After getting most of the cutting done, the chainsaw decides to:
1. not start
2. when it does start, it won't stay started
3. when it does run it won't cut for crap
We decide E. should run to Bluemel's and get the dirt since we've unloaded the dirt, and we're guessing the chainsaw is flooded. Again.
Upon returning, the chainsaw still won't start so E is ultra-frustrated. I tell E he should go back to the Home Depot and tell them the problem. I voluteer to shovel dirt.
I do a fairly good job of shoveling, E returns, and I run inside to get us some beer.
I hear the chainsaw start for a little bit but it's over by the time I get back outside with Corona's in hand.
"Done" E says.
"Oh is this one broken too?"
"No, I'm done cutting, I got those all done."
So we both are frustrated that it was mostly because we had a wonky chainsaw that we were having all these issues.
We laugh, finish our beers and continue working.
The sun is starting to set and we need to return our rented goods.
We get home, inexplicably exhausted, meaning, I can't even beging to tell you how exhausted we were.
830 pm.
That is 13 1/2 hours of manual labor, with assorted Corona breaks in between.
And the bed wasn't even done.
We still needed to fill the bed with the gravel, and the dirt/compost.
So I do this the next day with everyone's favorite announcer, Bob Uecker, on the radio.
E is highly impressed with my work and can't believe I can even move.
But I was highly motviated as I wanted the bed to be DONE.
We got the bed done that day, and in teh following days I moved my tomato seedlings to pots, my sunflower seedlings to the ground, and tried (tried being the operative word) and gave my seedlings some outside time as it was unseasonably warm.
The garden isn't close to being done.
Unfortunately I will need to buy some plants, as I will have enough veggies to teh fill the bed, but didn't think about my front garden, and my transplants didn't take on the side.
I wasn't super connected to those anyway.
In other news.
I think my rose bush, which I was certain I killed last year, is growing???
I will keep you posted.
It could just be a weed, but it was thorns, and it's growing right by my rosebush stump.
Only time will tell.
Total cost for bed?
Truck rental (plus gas): $80
Coffee: $3
Chainsaw rental: $54
Railroad ties, tools, & wheelbarrow: $241
Compost dirt (they were out of garden dirt): $45
Pea gravel: $35
(it should be noted that we have LOTS of gravel left and I was able to basically fill not only the bed, but all my containers, and the side of the alley with this dirt, if you can GO TO BLUEMEL's where you can get bulk dirt/gravel).
More than we wanted to spend, but we now own a wheelbarrow, and we truly do look at it as an investment.

In other news:
We got our first crop share this weekend!
We were very excited, although disappointed to see we did not get any arugala, as the sheet stated we would.
I will blame M&Z, as they are arugala whores.
JayKay kids.
Jay kay.
We got rhubarb, which I've NEVER cooked with before, green garlic, lettuce, and asparagus.
Not a TON, but I would say $10 worth. The newsletter said the first boxes are light, and we will get more as teh season goes on.
As I had no idea what to do with rhubarb, I decided to make the recipe that was included in the newsletter:
A rhubarb pudding/cake.
It sounds gross, I will admit, but it turns out pretty cakey, it is actually really delicious.
It's kind of like a coffee cake.
I even had a wee piece this morning with my coffee, warmed in the microwave for 15 seconds.
I have one stalk of rhubarb left so I will probably make it again with the stuff that is growing in my yard.
I will most likely use the green garlic for pizza, and the lettuce for salad.
Week one of crop share is a success!

I'm truly sorry this is so long.
I will try to be a better blogger.

Monday, May 18, 2009

Day 67

Today was an adventure.
As only Jj&E can have.

First of all, apparently I made us late.
I don't fully concur, as I was downstairs sitting with my bag ready to go, while E was doing god knows what upstairs. I think he thought I was still getting ready.

So we get a late start.
No time to make coffee, and even if we could the grinder is broken.
It's not a fun time at the Burch-Castrapel household.

We get on the road and realize we will miss the Kenosha trains, so we try to catch a train in Waukegan, but googlemaps doesn't tell us what direction we're heading on a specific highway, so we end up going the wrong way and end up at a Metra Station in Grayslake (sp?).

The conducter was not the nicest person in the world, but we got to Addison in Chicago.
We then took the bus to Wrigley, ate some lunch, got some coffee (FINALLY!) and headed into the game.

The game was an absolute mess.
The Padres not only got beat, but effing hammered.
I did notice that while at Wrigley, the Chicago fans are a lot less douchey.

As luck would have it we got the first bus leaving Wrigley, and we didn't have to wait too long for the train. We still didn't know if we would end up where we needed to end up, but we were trusting the conductor, who was nicer than the previous one.

FINALLY we get to Grayslake.
While it was slightly convenient to utilize public transit, it was a huge hassle.
But that could just be my negativity taking over, as I tend to hate Chicago.
And this doesn't even have to do with their baseball.
I just never have fun when I'm there, or I did once or twice.
But usually I end up getting sick.
Which E claims is all in my head, as he LOVES Chicago.

We get home to find Noah has the poopiest crate I've seen in a while.
While in Chicago, I thought I should have probably arranged for a friend to come over and let him out, but alas, the game snuck up on us.
So I didn't, and he had exploded all over the inside of his crate.

I made a deal with E that if he went and picked up a pizza, I would take care of the dogs.
So that is what we did.

Day trip to Chicago:
However, I will be hiring someone to take care of the dogs next time, to avoid this situation.
Or Shituation as I would like to call it.

The good news is the weather is nice so I can just hose off the crate outside.
Thank goodness for water pressure!

Tomorrow I will be driving south yet again for my second interview.
I will keep you posted.

Day 66

Today was a lazy day.
I did do some running earlier in the day.
I actually did a full jog!
Hardly any jalking this time.
So, yay me.
I just have to keep it up now.
No easy task, but fitting into my clothes the way I used to is a pretty good motivation.
I'm vain like that.

I got through the jog before the thunderstorm came, which was a good thing.
E and I were thinking of grilling out, but the weather kept us indoors snacking on crackers and cheese.

I had made plane to go over to M&Z's house to work on the CSP newsletter, which seems to be the thing no one wants to work on. But when you do it in a group, as it was supposed to be as JM was supposed to show, but was having childcare issues apparently, it goes by fast.
And it goes by faster when you're sharing a bottle of wine.
Or two.
So upon leaving the house with my umberella, ella ella ella, ey ey ey ey.
I head over.
And now it's full on storming out.
Thunder, cracks of lightening, the whole shebang.
But, I have to say.
I love it.
I heart thunderstorms.
I don't necessarily heart walking through them, but I love the sounds, the sights, the smells.
The whole experience of the thunderstorm.
MG and I got the newsletter done in about four hours, with some gossip breaks thrown in for good measure.
Not a bad night at all.
It did run a little late, as I was going to have to wake up early tomorrow to see the dreaded Cubs take on the Padres of San Diego in Chicago.

This task will be even more difficult as:
1. I am not a morning person
At all.
2. Our coffee grinder decided to break/go on the fritz today. I can hope that an elf will come and fix it whilst we sleep, but our luck indicates that this will not happen and that we will be forced to go coffee-less.
3. Jj without coffee makes her even less of a morning person.
Oh it's possible.

Day 65

Today was a day of waiting around by the phone as I am currently engaged in a vicious game of phone tag from a prospective employer.

This kept me in the house all day, as in previous days when I had left to run my errands, or to the library, I had missed their calls. So in an effort to be proactive about the situation, I decided to do absolutely nothing until they called.

And finally they did.
Towards the end of the day (of course).
I have a second interview scheduled for Friday.
Some friends have told me that it could be a job offer, but I'm not going to look too far ahead.
I'm just going to wear clean clothes (a skirt!) and get there on time.
The interview process has been a long one:
Tests, first interview, copywriter test, second interview, and who knows what's next.
But whatevs.

We then met my dad and his gf and walked to the Brewer game.
Which was quite lovely as the weather was so delightful.
And as an added bonus.
The Brewers pulled out a win!
Prince Fielder had a multi-hr game!
So that was a good time indeed.

Upon returning home, I had an email from yet another employer wanting to set up a phone interview!
This job is for a communications specialist, which according to the job description, I believe I would be good at.
But let's be real.
I feel like I would be good at all the jobs I apply to.
Hence me applying there.

I probably should have done more housework today, but I feel as if it's just a never ending mess.
I do wish I could have picked up some Type-A from somewhere.
But alas.
E & I are definitely Type D's:

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Day 64

Today E and I were quite the active urban residents.
We walked to our urban library, through Washington Park.
Then we swung by the Urban Ecology Center, located in Washington Park to pick up some info on upcoming events.
If you live near an Urban Ecology Center, I would recommend becoming a member as they provide great things for residents of the city! I think a family membership is like $35.
With that being said, Erin and I are not members, as I don't have a job.
But we will become members once a steady paycheck is rolling in.
I promise.
Just like I promise to become a member of WMSE, WUWM (our NPR station, yep...we're THOSE people that listen to NPR), and maybe Radio Milwaukee.
I say maybe to Radio Milwaukee because 9 times out of 10 I don't like what they're playing, but they DO do a lot of stuff for neighborhood's, and they are still better 95% of the radio stations out there.
If you listen to these stations and have a job you should totally support them!!!
Even if it's just $5. They will, to quote AA, "APPRECIATE!"

We then headed home for a delicious dinner made on the grill.
Fake chicken cutlets and grilled asparagus (okay and some wine and beer) make for a delicious meal. We are quite impressed with the McCormick's Montreal Grill Seasoning, as our last bottle of "Season-All" ran out and we were quite disappointed to find out that they don't make it anymore. Seriously, this bottle came from J&P and we were both sure it was years, if not decades old.
This stuff is good, even though we will never use it on a steak.

After dinner we had a neighborhood meeting.
As I'm sure most of you know, I serve on the board of our neighborhood association.
This meeting was a biggie.
There was a group home proposal and apparently, if there is something that CSP residents don't want in their neighborhood...
It's a group home.
A group home for troubled youth.
Troubled males.
Actually some people thought a group home would be fine, if controlled, etc.
Upon hearing the initial where/what/when from our Alderman, I kind of thought I wouldn't like this idea.
I decided I would let the woman talk and see if she could talk me into it. Maybe she had some great ideas, great staffing options, what have you.
None of the above.
Her and her associate gave different answers, used made up words (seriously "Flustrated"?), and clearly had no idea what was going on, nor what our neighborhood was about.
Which means they did absolutely no research, which didn't give me confidence in the way they would run business.
And it was clearly a business venture for them.
So as a group, CSPNA did not like the idea of a group home. This doesn't mean it won't happen.
But it will go to BOZA when they are making their decisions.
The board looked like we actually had our shite together.
For once.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Day 63

Noah, the wonder foster dog, obviously did not know that I was out the previous night (and the night prior to that) so I was up at a relatively early hour.

I let the dogs out, and poured myself a big old glass of lemon water.

I then contemplated blogging about the prior night's events, but decided against it as I was in no place to do anything but watch television.
Or the computer as the case may be.
Upon getting home the night before I thought I had looked at the score to the Brewers-Cubs game.
I thought I had seen a score of 12-6.
But as the wine was unlimited, and my dreams were about a baseball game with a ridiculous amount of errors, I couldn't be sure what was true anymore.

So I fired up Hal 9000 and decided to look into this 12-6 victory I thought I had read about the night before.
And indeed, 12-6 was the score that was posted, but all the articles seemed to be talking about the score being 9-5.
So I cue up the game on the MLB.TV that we have and take in the prior night's ball game.
Because one of my favorite activities is watching the ol' ball game.
As I'm sure you know.

And then, because it's the busiest weekend in the world, we have tickets for that afternoon's game.
Unfortunately, it was not nearly as eventful last night's game, and the Crew came away with a loss.
But we did take the series at least.

The rest of the night was spent lazing about as we were so completely exhausted we couldn't do anything else.
I thought about jogging, but my feet (and blisters) were laughing at that thought.
Not to mention the rest of my muscles.

Day 62

Today was the day of a lifetime.

After staying out until bartime with my former work peeps and DF, the queen of Rhode Island, Saturday morning came all too soon.

I keep forgetting that I am no longer 21.
Or even 26.
I wish I could have gotten some kind of letter in the mail, telling me that I was about to lose all of my party-hearty ability.
Or my recovery-time was going to drastically extend.
But instead, I'm a bit wrecked on Saturday.
And E and I STILL have to get random things for the wedding we are attending.
And by random things I mean E. still needs an outfit, basically:
Pants, socks, tie.
And we need to shower.
And wrap the gift.
Because we are not real adults and are never prepared for anything.

So AA comes over and we wrap presents while E showers, then it's my turn.
The next thing we know it's 1:40 and we've got to high-tail it to the wedding which is at 2.
Luckily we live about 10 minutes from downtown, so we are okay.
And we totally weren't the last ones there.
Some people actually came in after the ceremony had started, which I thought was pretty lame, but whatevs.
I think at that point you watch from the window.
The wedding itself was quite nice, the little parable they told got kind of long, but again.
It was MM's day and she can do what she wants.
They had about a babillion bridesmaids and groomsmen, but rather than detracting, I thought it was rather cute.

After the wedding we hooked up with PO for a spell and then decided that a bloody mary might be on the docket as we had about 3 hours to kill and we didn't want to waste our being dressed up.
And we looked really good.
Even me.
I showered, and matched.
I know.

So we head to Comet get a bloody or two, get some appetizers and chat it up.
Good times on the bayou indeed.
AA and I discussed us opening up our Supper/Reception Club which we've talked about for years.

We had learned ahead of time that during cocktail hour all drinks will be free, but after the hour is up, only beer and wine will be free.
It was so on.
So we get to the cocktail hour right on time, enjoy some cocktails, talk to the bride and groom, etc.
The food comes and I have to say.
Wedding food has really come of age lately.
1. They had vegetarian food.
2. It was actually delicious. Like something I would order.
3. They had mini cakes at each table and the cakes were actually super delicious.
And I don't even like cakes.
But these tasted like homemade deliciousness.

Dancing happened, with a stint by the UW marching band, which was super cute I have to say (both were UW grads), and then, although I was utterly full by the end of the night they brought out sushi and pizza as a snack for everyone who had danced off all their dinner/cake calories.

Since I was wearing almost 4-inch heels, my feet were dead to me by the end of the night, and E had to open the next day so we didn't get to close down the wedding.

But it was a good time.
And I approved of their marriage.
And their wedding.
Which is always a plus.

Friday, May 8, 2009

Day 61

In lieu of jalking today, I may take a stroll to the ol' libes.
If I cut across Washington Park, I'll be there.
Which would be great if I had kids, cos it would be exercise AND going to the library.
Instead it's just me, but it will still be exercise and going to the library.

Brewers are home today, and EC and I will be in attendance.
Hopefully for a win.

Tomorrow is MM & MO's wedding.
Which should be a good time.
I think most weddings which aren't involving my family or EC's besties involve alcohol these days.
Jj likey.
Oh yes.
Veggie food!
And who doesn't love to cut a rug?
Speaking of which.
After the game tonight, we will be going dancing with the one and only DF who is in town for a limited time engagement.

I would also like to take a moment to comment on a friends link on FB this morning.
I don't know why I bother reading anything when Hannity's name is involved, but it seemed so ridiculous, I thought maybe it was a delayed April Fool's joke?
We're ridiculing our President because he wanted dijon mustard?
Is this for real?
It must be a slow news day.
First of all, mustard is a delicious condiment.
And dijon mustard? It's like the classy cousin of mustard.
I don't want someone who I think could live next door to me to run the country.
Are you effing kidding me?
I would hope the leader of our country is smarter, and yeah, I would take a little more classy, than the rest of America.
Since when is dijon mustard the litmus test of elitism?
NOT TO MENTION the burger joint was NOT a typical burger joint, it's kind of a "Classy" place.
For the love...

Also job news!
It appears (I'm currently engaged in a game of phone tag) I will be having ANOTHER interview with the company I have been in contact with.
Could the recession be nearing an end?
Could my bartending dreams fall by the wayside?
Only time will tell.
I will obviously keep you posted.

Day 60

I really REALLY wish something of note would happen.
But alas.
Still jobless.
And becoming hopeless.
I'm seriously considering bartending.
These are the conclusions I've come to while sleeping in and blogging all day.
JT thinks I would be awesome, and I have to kind of agree.
1. I'm a fast learner of drinks and such. I think.
2. I'm ridick at small talk.
3. I could most likely wear jeans. This is huge for the Jj.
4. It seems as if people make decent money at it. Eh?
5. PLUS it appears as if we're going smoke-free soon, so I wouldn't even smell like bar all the time!

I honestly have no idea what to do.

I HAVE kept up with the jogging though.
It's not easy, let me say but it does appear as if Noah is on par with me.
Today I ran more than the previous day, and while I still felt winded, and my face was still red, the "good" part came faster.
I then enjoyed a carb overload for dinner which was fecking delicious.
Fake turkey and mashed potatoes and gravy.
Give me mashed potatoes or give me death.
(full disclosure, that is from a Far Side cartoon, but I think it would be a really great title to the following:
1. food blog
2. band
3. Gary Larson's autobiography/biography
It's a rare breed that can quote Far Side cartoons.

Wee little pet peeve of the day:
Our DVDs/CDs were due to the library.
And I don't know if any of you know this, but the Washington Park library is ridiculously awkward to get to. It seems EC and I always get "lost" on the way there.
I have lost in quotes because we know where we are, we just don't know where we are in relation to the library.
So after driving around for like 15 minutes thru some hard-luck neighborhoods let me tell you, I finally find it.
It looks dreadfully dead but, by my car clock (which is 13-15 minutes fast) I have about 10 minutes, which is all I really need as I was just going to grab a CD in the "A" section.
So I drop off the goods and walk in, and the workers are like "Just so you know"
And I cut them off and look at the clock and say "I got five minutes right?"
Which, I'm sorry, but if there is nothing to clean or "close" other than maybe counting the $10 in the drawer and turning off your computer I'm not feeling bad for you.
To which she replies, "We're shutting our computers down NOW."
So then the libes doesn't really close at 5, it closes at 455 doesn't it.
Even another woman commented to me as we walked out.
How does one get a job at the library?
That is obviously where it's at.
Another career option for the Jj.
Is this nitpicking?
Yes, I realize that.
I refuse to go into most places of business when there is less than a half an hour until closing.
This especially applies to food places.
But the library?
I said it was a wee little pet peeve.
And I just thought I would share it.
I will survive without new music for the weekend.
On the plus side, I figured out (I think) how to get there easily.

In sports news:
The Brewers lost.
But Little Latin Loopy Loo was bound to have an off day.
And having a winning road trip is nice.
I'm hoping we can take the scrubs this series.
And let's be real. We only lost by 1.
Which is, at least, a game.

Manny Ramirez, hero to Dodger fans.
Has been suspended for 50 games due to a banned substance.
I don't know how it works.
I'm guessing, somewhere there is a list of what can be found in your blood stream, what can't be found.
MAYBE you could treat this list like most people treat medical allergies.
You give this list to your doctor, and he won't prescribe them.
If we're taking Manny's word, here (he said the substance was prescribed).
Not to mention the amount of managers/agents/"people" that he has.
The point is he broke a rule, and now has to face the consequences.
Simple as that.
A pitcher hits a batter after being warned (and sometimes without being warned) and he gets a fine and maybe a suspension.

I'm going to assume that the Dodgers will be okay.
They made it without him until August last year.
And if they can't?
Not my problem.
Talk to your superstar and his doctor.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Day 58

I wish I could say I had some updates from my various job searches.
I wish I could say I had some prospects.
But alas.
I have nothing.

I haven't heard back from from ANY place, which is beginning to be slightly worrisome.

This is what I can tell you.
I worked on my writing today!
I got a couple pages done, and plan on doing more the rest of the week.
It's amazing what I can force myself to do when the house is somewhat in order.
I still can't believe I have no clean-streak bone in my body.

I've enjoyed the Alan Parsons Project cd I've checked out from the library.
And I have to say.
I really love it.
Late 70s prog-rock.
Music for the gods.
And nerds.
But here is an ethics issue (and I did seriously send a letter to the NYT Magazine ethicist, Randy Cohen about this matter):
Is it akin to stealing music when I check it out from the library and then import it into my computer? I'm not selling said music, but I might include a song or two on a mix made for a friend. I'm not one of those who "steals" music on the internet, but I will borrow cd's from friends and burn copies. Is this only an issue because of the current state of the music industry? What if I only take music that I have on LP, but even then, the LPs were bought at thrift stores, and thrift stores aren't killing the record industry are they? It's a pandoras box of ethics. I don't have the answers, and I sure hope I'm not incriminating myself by asking these questions. Of course, I have not implicitly stated what I have done. I'm just asking the questions.
Can you tell I've been watching a lot of Law & Order?
Can I also tell you I'm highly attracted to the new lawyer on the regular L&O.
I have no idea why, except that I could tell he was British born, it's one of my super powers.
Another reason?

E&I went to pick up my newly battery-ized ipod.
It APPEARS to be charging, but the test will be tomorrow when I go on a run.
Because lord knows I need to get some activity in my life.

In other news:
A new short-term foster dog will be coming tomorrow.
His name is Noah.
His new owner is a jogger, so what better way than to get him broken in and me broken in.
It's amazing how things work out, sometimes.
E isn't exactly thrilled with a new big buddy in the house, but it's a short-termer.
And I do miss Rexford Files.

The Brew Crew extended their winning streak against the Pirates of Pittsburgh to 17 games, which I believe is the longest in MLB recent history.
And it definitely DOES appear as if JJ has found his swing as he had 4 ribbies.
What I love about this season's BrewCrew is that it is all kind of surprising that it's WORKING.
Yes, I will admit, it was a S-L-O-W start. And we are by no means out of the woods yet.
But we're playing some small ball, our pitching isn't NEARLY as awful as I thought it would be, and Rickie Weeks seems like he's FINALLY coming around. Which was a long train coming.
I'm not expecting miracles, but I think the Crew is playing some good baseball lately.
The Reds put a beatdown on the Fish, so we will have to see how tomorrow night's game plays out. It could be interesting.

Day 59

I think today could be the start of my return to exercising.
Winter has not been kind.
The recession made me quit my membership to the Y, although I rather enjoyed it, especially on my lunch break.
But then.
In an effort to save money we quit the gym.
Then in an effort for the Bon-Ton to save money I got laid off.

Today (I hope) is the glorious return.
And by glorious I mean I will be huffing and puffing and I will be beet red.
It won't be pretty.
It must be done.
I *think* my ipod battery replacement worked, which is a major reason no running has been occurring.
I will try that out today.
With my new foster dog!
I figure I will take him for a jog, as I guess he's kind of silly.
Tire him out a bit.

The ipod, thus far, has worked!
And true to form it was a very short 15-20 minute run with Noah, the weaver.
Not the easiest dog to run with, but it did make me feel better that he was just as tired as I was upon completion.
And yes.
I was completely drenched with perspiration and my face was red like a tomato.
After I coughed up a lung in the shower, and had a couple glasses of water.
I felt GOOD.
I even made a delicious homemade meal for dinner:
Homemade falafel.
Homemade cucumber sauce.
Homemade pita bread.

I'm iffy as to whether I will make the falafel again.
It was very good, but I think it would just be easier/cheaper to buy the mix and make it that way.
This recession is about time AND money people!
But whatevs.
Good food anyway.
And I have to say homemade bread is SO the way to go.
My goal is to figure out how to make ciabatta bread.
If I can do that I will be a happity hoppity camper.

In other news.
As I was preparing the home made meal of a lifetime (ps. If you're interested in making the above items, I would advise giving yourself a lot of time, perhaps making the pitas the night before as I started the dinner at 6-ish and we didn't eat until almost 9).
So as dinner was taking a long time I decided to run upstairs to catch the score of the Brewer game.
Multiple things surprised me.
1. the game was only in the second inning, little did I know that there was about an 45 minute rain delay.
2. Although it was only in the top of the second inning, the Brewers were UP with a score of NINE to nothing.
Needless to say, we won the game.
But it wasn't 9-0.
The final score you ask?
That is a football score, folks.
Braun hit his second grand slam of his career, not to mention it appears that JJ definitely DOES have his swing back (thank god).
EVERY play got a hit last night.
I think the Crew had 20 hits.
And Parra, to go with his first win, got his first hit.
I've said for years, when pitchers can hit, it's a good thing.
Other good news?
Zambrano is out due to a pulled hammie.
So we won't have to face him (and hopefully since the Cubs aren't doing *awesomely* we won't have to face a poop-ton of their just as poopy fans, sorry JL).
I realize it's early to look at standings, but we ARE in second and we ARE half a game up on the Scrubs.
Of course with that being said, everything in baseball (or life, one could say) is cyclical, so just as we are winning, things could most definitely change at the drop of a bat.

After an exhilirating win, I watched "Nick & Norah's Infinite Playlist."
Which I didn't really like.
But it did have a Shout Out Louds song, which I did like, immensely, because that band fills me with false nostalgia. Which is my favorite kind.
I like Michael Cera, but what I would really like is for him to play some super cool dude or something.
He plays the same person in every movie.
I mean, I guess.
This is what lots of people do, but for how long are we going to find awkward boys attractive?
This is going to pass isn't it?
We liked cool jerks in the 80s.
Misunderstood loners in the 90 (the too-cool-for-school types).
And now we get to pine after awkward sensitive weirdos with really good taste in music?
I guess.
Anyway, the story was quite thin, but the drunk girl is pretty perfect in it.
Mostly because we've lost BP on occasion whilst out.
Cooler people than me might like the soundtrack or the songs featured in the film.

Things I'm reccommending:
Water with lemon or lime or cucumber. So de-lish. So refreshing.
Snyder's of Hanover makes this Eat Smart white cheddar puffs. Healthy and freaking delicious, especially after a "jalk" (jog/walk, Thanks KD!).

Alan Parsons Project...early stuff. This year's halloween mix will defs be featuring the Raven, which I scoured the internet for and could not find.

Some of you may have noticed in this post I've started using second initials.
This is to avoid confusion and stalkers.
Jk people.
But I should read over the missed connections on Craig's List.
People are desperate.
Really bad spellers.

Monday, May 4, 2009

Day 57

Oh recession.
The job search has been grim.
Grim I say.
I did however apply to a web copywriter job today.
And it appears some friends of friends work at this retail behemoth.

I got a bday lunch from an old friend which was very unexpected, but quite lovely.
There really is nothing like good conversation, even if a swine flu epidemic (or pandemic) abounds.
Which can we please discuss for a moment.
As of today 26 people have died of the swine flu.
The N1H1 virus if you will.
Do you know how many people die EACH YEAR from non-swine flu?
I'm all about being informed, but can we PLEASE put this in perspective.
It appears that the hysteria is dying down, but man oh man, am I sick of hearing about it.

In other news.
It appears that the library got some new cd's in.

And in a drastic turn of events Rickie Weeks hit a dramatic 3-run homer to win the Pirate-Brewer game in the 9th inning. This after two great catches by two different left fielders, a stellar catch by Mike Cameron, and a 2-run double by Ryan Braun who didn't even get to the game until about half way thru.
Drama drama drama.
And it looks like JJ might be getting his swing bat.
Lawd knows he needs it.

Good day all around.

Day 56

Oh glorious sunny day.
It was ridiculously nice out.
E and I had some greyhound stuff to take care of early-esque in the day.
After promoting greyhound adoption for two or so hours we headed home to work in the garden/yard.
I re-bagged all of the brush that the garbage men didn't take, even though I'm pretty sure they were supposed to.
I have since put in a request to the city to have our refuse bags of brush removed, even though it is well under the four cubic feet limit.
Whatevs, city sanitation folk.
I also did some weeding, and transplanting of my sunflowers which were getting too big for their little starter pot.
I also planted my non-organic seeds using potting soil that is not intended for container growth.
Because I can't read labels apparently.
I'm trying it out anyway.

E and I then grilled out, or BBQ'd if you're from southern California, and lawdy.
It was delicious.
We tried some new fake meat, fake chicken cutlets.
And holy crust buckets.
Were those good.
So good so good so good.
Needless to say we were good and full.
I did indulge later in the day in some leftover ice cream cake.
I only felt it was fair as it was my birthday weekend after all.
And the greatest part was that I we pulled out the old boom box and I got to hear Uecker on the radio while working outside, enjoying a wine cooler.
Like a real-live adult.
And they won!
So the series was split with the D-backs.
Not exactly the way I would have ended it, but much better than the alternative.

The rest of the day was spent taking it easy as my hands were full of splinters from weed pulling/brush breaking.
I took in two films.
"The Reaping" and "The Strangers."
The first was pretty much right up my alley, as it involved satan worship and I love that.
With that being said, it really wasn't that good. I mean I jumped in some parts, but I guess I expect more from my thrillers, especially those of a religious ilk.
Maybe it's because I heart "Rosemary's Baby" so much.
There was a wee twist at the end, which was okay, but felt kind of forced, and not entirely realistic this day in age.

The second film, I'm pretty sure, was a rip-off of the Michael Haneke film "Funny Games," which I haven't watched yet as I know it's not one of those movies you can watch and be okay with.
Which I love and hate about Haneke's films.
I thought I had heard something about "The Strangers" but it turned out it ended exactly as I thought it would. Maybe I'm too informed on senseless violence, but my guess is that the Haneke film is much better.
I could be wrong.
I will keep you posted upon viewing "Funny Games."

Day 55

Considering how wrecked I was the night before, I wasn't sure much would get accomplished today.
Up at noon.
Saw Rex, my foster dog off to his new family, and E and I ran errands of a lifetime.
In a rare occurrence there was a bottle of diet Pepsi in the fridge for me.
Which, as I'm sure most of you know at this point, is one of my favorite hangover cures of all time.
And by cure, I mean, something I really just want to drink incessantly.

Our errands were not labor intensive and took a surprisingly short amount of time.
1. swing by the Miller Park to pick up some tickets for dear old dad. Unfortunately they were about $50 more expensive than he thought they would be. Marquee games.
2. Run to Laacke & Joys and pick up some chair that I one in an Outpost drawing. It's like a chair you would take to sit in the bleachers for or something. I've since tried it out and feel it will come in handy if:
a. I ever take up camping
b. I start picnicking.
c. I play alot of video games. (this however will not happen as our PS2 just broke and we cannot switch games which means E. will be playing MLB 09: The Show for the rest of the PS2's life).
Side note: I'm not a huge customer service stickler, a hello, a how can I help you. That is REALLY all I need for a pleasant experience. I don't like it when people follow me around the store, I don't like it when I get nothing. So I found it kind of annoying that I had to initiate conversation and that I barely got eye contact. Sure I wasn't buying anything, but what better way to make me want to shop there then to leave a good experience embedded in me? Maybe I just ooze "not-a-camper." I don't know. But it was kind of annoying because I want to see them succeed because they are local, and have been around a long time and they helped keep E. safe in Africa, and my dad safe in Appalachia (both true stories). And I have to say, they WERE helpful when we were getting E. prepared for his worldly journey. So maybe the guy was having a bad day and just wanted to be left alone.
3. Drive around the city looking for Plankinton Ave. to visit J. at the indie fashion fair. I was surprised at how reasonable things were and if I weren't jobless, I totes would have bought something.
4. Decided to try to pick up my amish ipod (we're talking like 3rd generation here) which was at the battery store being replaced. Unfortunately, it appears that they will be unable to fix my ipod as the battery is no longer holding a charge, or rather, I can use it as a portable stereo but not to run with. Boo. Because, not to get all self loathy here, but JJ gots to start running.
And how.
He was going to try one more battery and give a shout on Monday to let us know the fate. If all else fails I could always just get a shuffle and keep the amish one for parties where it can stay plugged in at all times.
5. Because the Brewer game was about to begin we decided to nix the traffic that would have been our way home and head to Mayfair to peruse the ipod selection at the Apple store, and since we are wedding-bound next weekend, we decide do peruse Crate & Barrel for their wedding gift, which we found, and I have to think we did a good job at. Crate & Barrel= good customer service and I heart their stuff. I'm gonna come out and say it.
I could spend hours in that store and love everything. Well, I didn't like their margarita glasses/pitchers.
But whatevs.
PLUS! They boxed it up for us! Fecking sweet.

We decided to head home.
We were both exhausted and had a big night ahead of us.
That's right.
We had tickets.
Tickets to see:
Flight of the Conchords
One of our favorite shows in all the land.
So we cowboy it up, and wait outside the Riverside like we are in NYC waiting for a movie.
It was, in case you didn't know, the hipster even of the season.
But oh.
Was it funny.
Even the opening act (Eugene Mirman) was funny.
One of my favorite parts of the show was how they handled hecklers.
One person asked where "Murray was" which prompted Jemaine to do a hilarious American accent asking Drew Barrymore where E.T. was as Murray is a fictional character played by Rhys Darby who resides in Aukland.
I guess it's hard because heckling is part of being a performer, but THIS type of heckling was:
1. of the ilk that you had been drinking all day (it was a 10 pm show and there was an early Brewer game that day).
2. people who think their funnier than the band/act that they paid almost $50 to see. You're not.
So MAJOR kudos to FOC for handling the hecklers awesomely. Not to mention they sang (or tried to) the epileptic dogs song, and screwed it up so cutely. Oh New Zealand band.
We laughed, got to hear some new tunes, some old faves.
Plus, well shucks, they are just so cute.
And funny.

Needless to say home we went, and bed we went.
I would make a comment about how old we are, but I DID just party until 4 am the previous day.
So that excuses me from old jokes a little doesn't it?

Day 54

Pizza party!

Well not exactly, but it was the party of a lifetime.

The early part of the day was spent cleaning out house, because it is impossible for me to work without a deadline, apparently.
I think this proves that I am indeed a writer.
So the house gets done and I start preparing the food.
Homemade rye bread.
Homemade white bread.
Homemade sangria (well, obs I didn't press the grapes, let's be real people).
Homemade taco dip.
Homemade spinach dip.
Homemade tortilla chips.
Homemade ice cream cake.
It was definitely the most homemade party I've thrown yet.
And I have to say.
I don't even know if I'm going to buy tortilla chips anymore, cos making them is super easy AND I'm gonna go with cheaper and better for you.

J, S, & A show up a bit early to get our drink on.
J and S keep professing their awe over my socialite skills:
Drinking, making food, conversation all at the same time.
It's true.
I did do a good job.
People came, people sang, people brought me some prezzies, which is always a pleasant surprise, AND I got lots of compliments on my spread and Sangria.
Thanks Trader Joe's and your creation of the two-buck chuck.
A punch bowl later and I still have tons left!
And, I have to say, I was a little leery, as I've had the red two-buck chuck and wasn't a huge fan.
I mean, let's be real, I drank it, but would prefer to spend a little extra on the $5 clearance wine at Sentry.
But the white.
There is a wine that is created for mixing.
I used the classy boxed wine and the two buck chuck for the sangria and I have to say, I just know punches.
Punches and dips.
Needless to say.
The food and wine was a big hit.
We have leftover liqour!
Always a bonus, and trick of the trade.
The last guests didn't leave until 4 am.
Which was perfect.
We k-oke'd until almost the break of dawn.
I had no idea it was so late as the clock was off of the wall due to tennis being played in the living room.
That happened.
I think I was outside for that part.
But I can't be sure.
Lots of singing was going on.
And by singing I mean drinking.
Where did all that time go?
I have to give major props to the Bon-Ton-ites as they partied like rockers and sang like rockers as well.
And P.
Always the last and most ferocious partier.
P is for perfect.

So I just want to give a shout out to A for helping me make taco dip and setting up.
There is no one else I would rather be domestic with.
J&S: came early, stayed late, my favorite kind of friends.
P: bringing family and friends (although numerous people were slightly creeped out by him, and did I hug him???), drinking local beer. Gussied just for me. You're tops.
J: surprised that you came at all, I'm glad I got to introduce you to someone who dated a highly functioning autistic. I wish we could hang out every weekend cos you are too cute and awesome for words.
K&E: sure, you tried to get my dog addicted to marb reds, you love on Super like nobody's business, and you brought cupcakes AND wine!
E(my E.): for partying hard and being a stealthy singer. I don't think I will ever forget your Gwen Stefani or Britney Spears.
J&B&R: although you forgot the cheese plate, you brought me Brewer jammy pants! PERFECTO!

It was a good birthday and per yuge, I'm sorry if I didn't get to talk to some of you longer...A bowl of sangria can do that to a person.

You know it's good when you just go through the k-oke cd hoping you know the next song.
And we all did really good at oldies.
Hidden gem of the evening?
I totes rocked "It's Still Rock and Roll To Me" by Billy Joel.
Who knew?

1st Annual Spring Fling:

Friday, May 1, 2009

Day 53

You say it's your birthday?
It's my birthday too, yeah!

Incidentally enough, now whenever I hear that song, all I can think of is "16 Candles" and Anthony Michael Hall singing that to Molly Ringwald, and then immediately going into "Hey Jude."

Today was a rather worthless birthday.
Turned the ol' 29.
Olds olds olds.
Having a party tomorrow which nothing is ready for yet.
Nothing tra la la.

Today was spent running incessant errands and then, I think you know what's coming here...watching the Brewer game, with a birthday dinner thrown in.

The good news?
I bought a case of wine at Trader Joe's.
So I should be good for the week.
Ha ha.
The next two weeks.
Whatevs, there is a recession people and 12 bottles of wine for $35, even if I have to drink double, it will be good.
Plus I've been going classy style and drinking wine coolers.
Because bubbles in drinks are classy.

The dogs woke me early-esque this morning, which was needed as I had my copywriter test as a migraine had hit me the day/night before. I played the birthday card to get E. to make me some joe, while I fired up the ol' computer.
I worked dilligently at the tests for a while and E. went to go run some errands.
I then showered, tried to find some clothes that fit me, and we were off to the libes for some cd/dvd action.
I being the awkward in-order person that I am, stuck with the "A's" for music and now have a Laurie Anderson cd.
E. checked out "The Rocker" which seemed like it was pretty funny (I was writing while he was watching).

We then headed to Trader Joe's where things were not nearly as cheap as I remembered them when we lived in Cally, but there was still the two buck chuck, and the cheap olive oil so I was happy.

I decided some veggie chili sounded good for dinner so we headed to Beans & Barley for my favorite vegetarian chili of all time.
I then get caught up in the re-telling of the major plot points of "Alvin and the Chipmunks" to E. that I'm laughing so hard I'm crying.
Literally, tears are running down my face and I need to use my napkin to clear them away.
E. thought I was either drunk or had taken one of his vikes.
Just a ridick person that you know and love.
On a side note I found out that his favorite fruits are oranges and bananas.
Which I did not know, because we so rarely have those fruits (any fruit really) in our house.
His favorite vegetable?
The things you learn on your birthday.