Monday, December 29, 2008

Planning, Freaking, Packing

So my nervous tummy has officially moved into the captain's chair of my life as the true countdown to South Africa begins. And it's not that I'm not excited and happy and totally and completely exihilirated, but when the unknown is still lurking, stress and nerves seem to take themselves out on my stomach. So I've accepted it's place in my day to day life. Acknnowledement is the first step right?

Anyways, so I'm beginning a mental packing list (yes, I know, I'm so on top of things) and realizing that I need tshirts. Decent tshirts that can get dirty, with things like baby spit up and sand and the diet coke in the airport and the day to day grit of working. And things I have now, actualy clothes that are pretty yet not that durable, are just not going to cut it. My mother and I have planned a massive trip to target in the near future and I can't WAIT for her to throw in the 'just in case you need them' bag of socks. Bless her heart. So my packing has begun, kind of, and the next exciting thing, planning.

Sue Taylor - (family friend, doctor, surrogate-mom, and general bad ass lady) and I are beginning to put together a rough plan. We fly in on sunday, we are spending sunday evening to tuesday in Capetown. I'm going to spend a day going to classes at Nelson Mandela University with a couple students that she and her family are helping to put through school. I'm going to tour the prison where he was kept and other Capetown-y things (not to mention give ourselves a day or two to get over jet lag). We are then going to move on to Port Elizabeth, where her project is, to meet with folks and work. She will be in meetings most of the rest of the week and our time there will be planned/hosted by her people. I will be helping in the classrooms and clinic at Saphire Elementary. I am going to be soaking it all in. She said to be prepared to be "in awe". Here is a little idea of the project that she, her husband, and the University of Washington educators are involved in there.

We are then going to head to Durban on saturday or sunday and then a short flight to Richard's Bay (the town nearest my town that has an airport) on that coming monday. I arrive at my program on monday, January 25th. That feels like a good day.

And just for shits and giggles, and since it has been dubbed my/our song by two lovely boys at work, here is a littly diddy to make you smile.


Sunday, December 21, 2008

Put your balls into it!

So, I know this has been the third non substantial youtube clip posting in a row! But it's the weekend (aka I'm working alot) and my dad has shotty internet and the snow is making any sort of exciting happenings a challenge. Aside from the most amazing glass of wine of my life with maris jean jager on friday, some james bond and cookie making at the johnstons, and a lovely nap I have schedule for 22.4 mintues from now, I'm not doing anything lately. Just waiting. For christmas, and friends, and new years, and then finally AFRICA. So here's a little corny christmas cheer from Jason Mraz to speed the process along.


Friday, December 19, 2008

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

In my absolute-ly ideal world....


You Heard it Here First, Edition XIII

So, I have been ignoring my blog lately, mainly because of work and christmas shopping and SA visa errands, but also because I've been compiling this ridiculously long music list. It's very random, like always, and some of the song have been single handedly getting me through my 55 hour work week. But being dubbed the queen of the deli and taking home the thickest tip envelope doesn't hurt either. Enjoy.

1. Ok, if you liked the soundtrack to the Into The Wild film, done so well by Eddie Vedder of Pearl Jam last year, you will really enjoy this group, called Great Lake Swimmers, because I'm suprised they weren't featured along with those haunting songs. But it definitely does have its own style, banjo mixed with simple acoustic guitar and perfectly warm vocals combine to make some really awesome tunes. And everyone needs a little steel guitar every once in awhile, even if you proclaim to hate country. And they're Canadian, so they're inherently cute with how they spell and pronounce things. My favorite currently is Your Rocky Spine (below!), but I also recommend "Changing Colours" and "Backstage with the Modern Dancers".

2. Ani DiFranco. An obsession I gained through roomate-osmosis from my like minded music friend Caitlin in college (and im sure ive ranted about Ani before). Her storytelling gets better better as I hear more and more of her stuff, and her songs pop up on my ipod and continually (and pleasantly) suprise me. Other than my continual favorites of "Fixing her Hair" and "Shy" and "Gravel", the song "School Night" is probably the most moving at this point in my life. We've all felt connected to someone in our lives that was incredibly bad for us, opposite from us, and not worth our time. But sometimes, you can't help it, and weirdly that pain reminds us that that connection is there, and not going away anytime soon. Here it is!

3. Ever since Lauren got me to listen to some of his stuff, I've tried my hardest to keep up on Ben Folds (of ben folds five). I will never forget the conversation we had where she gushed about the concert of his that she just saw on the U of I campus. Full of glee. He has recently paired up with Regina Spektor, to do a quirky catchy little song called "You don't know me." It's very fun and smart. (and I'm nt one of those really annoying people that says "thats so smart" about a movie or "youre looking smart today". For some reason I feel like thats a particularly snobby statement, but anyways, it was really fitting, so I mean it!)

4. So I contemplated doing an entire music blog of silly girl pop songs, cause they're everywhere right now, dontcha think? And to be perfectly honest, they're freaking fun. Songs like "Just Dance" by Lady Gaga and "Hot n Cold" by Katy Perry and "So What" by Pink, and "If I were a boy" by Beyonce. And Rihanna is just bringin it home right now, nawmsayin? So because I can't make up my mind (duh, when can I?), I give you a song that maybe you don't already know, but along the same lines as the ones above. I hope it gets stuck in your head! Neener! And let's just be clear about this one, I was turned on to her music by Lauren, and mad props to her for finding it and playing it in her car for me about a month back. How come we're so ahead of the times? Must be the wheaties, and holynames, and our general bad ass-ness. Anyways, here's a French pop artist called Yelle, and her song (among many awesome diddies) is called "Ce Jeu" (although my other favorite is "Les Femmes" ).

5. Ok, my dad once told me that "any song that goes into it's chorus within the first 30 seconds" is ridiculous. Pop songs often do. For catchyness sake. And if there isn't much in the verses and interludes to entertain and inspire the listener. And I believe him. Because he's my dad, and also a really excellent musician. But anyways, that doesn't mean that I don't love my fair share (or more) or rock-pop songs. So I bring you my new favorite (although it barely makes the cut with 33 seconds of song before the chorus). I saw it in a movie, can't remember which one, and now it's all over the radio. It's called "I'm not over" and it's by Carolina Liar.

6. So, mainly because of the boys I work with, I am exposed to lots of music I wouldn't normally listen to or know about. Read that as: there are lots of conversations where I don't know what's going on or what killer/epic band/song/guitarsolo they're talking about. Anyways, we can agree on one thing, and that's the Beatles. Especially the "breakfast with the beatles" special that 102.5 does on sunday mornings. It truly gets me through the "hump day" of my week. And of course I'm sure people are thinking "um, you're only 45 years too late, Claire". But really, I'm beginning to realize (more and more each sunday) just how brilliant they are/were. This song "You've got to hide my love away" has always resonated with me. It sounds as if it could have been written two weeks ago. Timeless. And those baby faces in the video, so cute.

7. Ingrid Michaelson and Joshua Radin (who both have new albums) did a song together, called "Sky". And let me just say "what is WITH his voice?". Why is so wraspy and beautiful. Really? Does it just come out that way? Does he have to try? Fascinating. Anyways. They are both exquisite singers and their duet is beautiful.

8. Kings of Leon. Sex on Fire. When the song comes on at work, I immediately rush over the soup corner and pretend to be doing something really important like stocking 'to-go' soup containters/lids. The lyrics alone can totally distract me. That and the boys' have a sneaky way of coming back from their lunch breaks smelling collectively of smoke and cologne. That in combination with a song by The Kings of Leon can totally twitterpate me. But, since I've already featured Sex on Fire in a past edition, I'll have to share another one of their great songs with you. It's called "Use Somebody".

9. I would be liar liar pants on fire if I didn't confess to loving the new Britney Spears stuff. The current whining around the house is how muucccchhhhh Maria wants Britney tickets for her birthday in April. It's all "Mom, you have NO IDEA!". And despite not being here to experience that craziness come April 16th, I still will obsess over the songs with her. Not a problem. I'm kind of over Womanizer, but I'm liking Circus currently. It's purely what I expect from Britney, yet also something I can make fun of. Or maybe that's the same thing. Regardless I would totally dance all up in your biznass in the club to this one.

10. Shake it the ground. A shamlessly fun hip-hop dance track that I found on youtube the other day. IT'S SO MUCH FUN. Thats all there is to it. I wish I could bring all the boys to the yard like these girls.

11. Tracy Chapman has a new album. Say what!? I know. So one of her new song, which I immediately looked up once I heard, is called "Sing for You". Her brilliance continues.

12. This one just builds and builds and builds. Totally intense. And sweet and melancholy. All the things I love. The End here in Seattle recommended it and I usually take their word for things like this. It's called "Sometime After Midnight" and it's by Airborne Toxic Event. A little bit Killers, a little bit Matchbox 20, and a little bit something else.


Monday, December 8, 2008

Its Almost Here

You know that feeling whe you have a date? or its christmas morning and you're six years old? or you just finished finals week in college? and all you want to do is smile real big and giggle and jump around and have a drink and scream and pee your pants and cover your face with your hands because it's all just a little bit too much to HANDLE!? yeah THAT'S HOW I'M FEELING RIGHT NOW BECAUSE


i bought my tickets


HEY, hey, hey HEY! (think the pickle song in little rascals)

They are purchased. I fly from Seattle to New York, New York to Dakar, Senegal (unfortunately it's just for gas, I don't even get to get out of the plane and see all the cool airport people and signs in different languages), and then from Dakar to CAPETOWN. I arrive at 4:30 pm and then I'll probably just wait around for Sue to come in at 10 and then we'll do our darndest to get to bed so we can shake the sure to be RIDICULOUS jetlag. SOUTH AFRICA HERE I COME.

(giggle giggle dance dance)


Wednesday, December 3, 2008

I once made out with a Neil Patrick Harris look alike.....

See more Jack Black videos at Funny or Die

sometimes, people are just so freaking awesome :) way to go funny or die :)


Monday, December 1, 2008

Roller Coaster : Me

It is up and down these days, maybe its PMS, I really hope it is, but its a freaking trip. In the morning I'm super excited and optimistic about South Africa and then later that day I feel as if every lead is a dud and that I just want to tear up and run to the bathroom. I'm feeling constantly discouraged by all the dead ends and details and schedules and ahhhh. I just want an extra week to figure this all out, a week without work or phone calls or stupid customers or unavailable boys who live in central washington but kiss like its their job, or pesky sisters or doubting family members. Where I can just buckle down and feel good about what I've accomplished. And I am aware that this is undoubtedly my fault, because I am the queen of procrastination (and princess of my neighboring colony lazy-town) but some things, I just don't have control over. And isn't that the thing we mortals hate the most? Not being able to control every last detail? Well I'm finally joining that club, and I'm really hoping that it doesn't last long. Cause the fucking holidays are coming up and I just can't handle being any more of an emotional wreck than they will already make me become. I just can't help it that "Carol of the Bells" makes me cry, I just can't!

Anyways, I am going to regress to my earlier years and fill out one of those silly myspace surveys, partly because it will make me laugh (and hence brighten my mood and deter me from opening a very enticing bottle of wine upstairs) but also because I know I have not been all there with people lately. Bad at calling back and not getting the jokes at work and fighting with maria. So here we go! Judge all you want :)

1. Do you like chinese food? yessss, and come to think of it, I haven't had any of the really bad but really yummy sticky fake sauce kind in a long long time

2. How big is your bed? a twin, it does the job

3. Is your room clean? not even close

4. Laptop or Desktop computer? laptop, but maybe if I had a desktop I couldn't break it

5. Favorite comedian? Lily Tomlin, she's so badass, and that guy with the glass of scotch

6. Do you smoke? nothing, only hookah in college, gosh I feel old

7. Does anyone like you? probably not

9. Sleep with or without clothes on? a tshirt, and i'm good to go

11. Who sleeps with you every night? my stuffed racoon named ricky

12. Do long distance relationships work? I wouldn't know

13. How many times have you been pulled over by the police? never

14. Pancakes or French Toast? french toast for reals

15. Do you like coffee? um, its like crack

16. How do you like your eggs? my coworker makes a bomb omelette for me

17. Do you believe in astrology? its fun to think about

18. Last person you talked to on the phone? alex johnston, my oldest friend, and it felt totally magical, love that kid

19. Last person on your missed call list? caitlin, my big sister

20. What was the last text message you received? "I know" from jillian, we were exchanging hilarities about the ridiculousness of "the hills"

21. McDonalds or Burger King? neither

22. Number of pillows? two, one for structure in the back (leaning against the wall almost stuck between the bed and the wall) and a soft but kind of firm (preferably some sort of down, but not the kind that melts if you lean on it) one for my head. I'm specific.

23. Last thing you ate? turkey and cucumbers on half a wheat bagel at work

24. Last thing you bought? 3 minutes on a printer/online at kinkos

25. What are you hearing right now? some "shiny toy guns" song

26. Pick a lyric? ride the racecar, we're the girls of le disko

27. What kind of jelly do you like on your PB & J sandwich? rasberry

28. Can you play pool? nope, but i love to try

29. Do you know how to swim? oh for sure, i love it

30. Favorite ice cream? pralines and cream, absolutely the best thing on earth

31. Do you like maps? i love them, and that one song about them by jason mraz.

32. Tell me a random fact: it is impossible to lick your elbow

34. Ever attend a theme party? what college party wasn't?

35. Ever do a keg stand? nope

36. Craziest place you've slept after a night of drinking? hammock

37. What is your favorite season? spring/summer

39. Pick a movie quote: "did you HEAR that!?" from makes me smile every time..

41. What is your favorite hangout? currently, the bagel deli makes me feel at home, i love it there

44. Last time you laughed at something stupid? the hills. enough said.

45. What time did you wake up this morning? 8:30, it was glorious

46. Wake up next to anyone? oh please

47. Best thing about winter? CHRISTMAS, bitches!

48. Name a couple of favorite colors: all shades of blue, currently = navy

49. How old are you? 23 (and according to alex, 23 is practically 25 and 25 is old) and my reaction: "I KNOW!". Feeling very old.

50. What month is your birthday in? June. It always rains.

51. Do you think pirates are cool or overrated? overrated.

52. Favorite Dave Matthews Band song (if you have one?) "so right"

53. What are you doing this weekend? working, sleeping. that is all.


Monday, November 17, 2008

South Africa

Recently I have had some false alarms about ticket buying days and prices and such and such (which of course has been stressful and brought about many ansy pants moments), but I can now say that I have some very exciting official news about my flights! I am leaving on January 17th on a plane to Boston (Alaska Air Flight 12), then to Amsterdam (NWA via KLM flight 6038) and then on to Capetown (NWA via KLM Flight 0597). Sooooooo YAY. And the best part is that I get to travel with the one, the only, Sue Taylor. And if that means I ended up paying a couple hundred extra dollars, then so be it, because you don't get a better travel buddy than Sue. I. CAN'T. WAIT.


ps: my return flight (for my visit home) is for August 7th, via Senegal and New York!

His Name is Mbongeni


Sunday, November 16, 2008

Everybody Farts

Nothing to report from my last few days of early shifts. Just lots of coffee, sore knees, cute boys, fitful naps/nights, one indiana jones movie with the dad, and a basketball tournament for Maria. Pretty much the usual. But I knew it was an exceptionally low stress weekend when the only thing my particularly dysfunctional family fought about (after extened periods of time together) was who farted in the car! :)



Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Food Service: The Dish

My Notes so far in the world of Food Service/Customer Service......

1. Clean up after yourself. It continues to blow my mind how incredibly messy people can be. I'm not asking you to do it all, because I understand the idea that I am serving you, but please bus your dishes and try not to let your smear cream cheese and russian dressing over 98.2 percent of the table. Thanks.

2. Have your uber complicated orders ready before you try to relay them to me. I don't mind that you want a veggie sandwhich with extra mayo with an egg on top. I may think its weird but I'm totally willing to do it for you, but don't take 5minutes to explain something that could have taken 9 seconds.

3. Mind the freaking Qeue. Thanks.

4. When it looks like I'm doing something (which actually means I'm doing three things), it's because I AM doing something, so wait your turn, wait in line, and then feel free to ask the person who is actually standing at the register waiting to help you. It's that simple.

5. Food is expensive. Don't try to have a conversation about how expensive our prices are. You are here, you have seen the menu, and are choosing to order something, plus it's paying me, so don't try to get me on your side. 8 dollars is a mother fucking great price for a bagel sandwhich, chips, and a drink/coffee. Plus, have you not SEEN the cost of food right now!?

6. After working in food service, you learn to quickly yet awkwardly close doors, microwaves, shelves, and hold a knife wearing exam gloves.... all at the same time. So when it looks like I just used me elbow and my hip to do something, don't give me a look. It's called multi tasking and it's speeding up your food.

7. Unfortunately the industry tends to attract short term people, because it's not like they offer health care or competitive wages, so despite some lovely hardworking people that I call my coworkers, I also work with a few dimwits. Slow, unloyal, late, excuses excuses, always hungover college students. And I get that you have better things to do, because really, I know the feeling, but please at least act like you care. This is not subway or walmart, you're actually working directly with and for your super sweet and fair boss (and his family). And he happens to be sick right now. So instead of that meaning you don't have an authority figure around to impress, it should mean that you are busting your ass to keep the ship going. Thanks.

8. I have gotten really really used to wearing an apron, and wiping my hands constantly on it (anything, cream cheese, egg, split pea soup, clorox water), that I will go home and be making food/dinner/coffee and will end up with egg whites, peanutbutter and coffee grounds on my jeans. And then I slap myself in the face because I feel so stupid. It happens almost every single day.

9. Do what I say and not what I do, wear good shoes. Its crucial.


Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Faith in the Media: I love Keith!

This gave me goose bumps. Keith Oberman is a A BRAVE brave man, on national television, saying what most of us believe so clearly and eloquently.


Monday, November 10, 2008

It's Hereditary

Maria: I have to pee.

Me: then go....

Maria: I don't want to. I don't want to get up.

Me: sorry about your luck then I guess.

Maria: yeah.....could you hand me the clear nail polish over there?

Me: No.

Maria: claire, I'm not going to stop takling and let you watch the movie unless you get it for me!!

Me: No. I'm comfy.

Maria: Gawd Claire, its right there!

Me: well, you wouldn't get the forks earlier!

Maria: but they were all the way upstairs!

Me: Well I cooked for you!

Me: Why are we all so motherfucking lazy!?

Maria: I don't know, but I'm still NOT getting up to pee!


Sunday, November 9, 2008

One of those things.....

.....that I will always want to be able to do. And despite having a guitar that I own, I still haven't had the discipline to sit down and leeeaarrrrnnn more than one chord. I might just need to take a class. But this picture, that we featured on the picture blog this weekend, renews my inspiration to learn guitar. It's a life goal. Bear with me.


Saturday, November 8, 2008

You Heard it Here First, Edition XII

I just did a little dance around in my pjs because I have the house to myself. Well really, I've had the house to myself since wednesday, and crucial to this euphoria is that I finally have internet, found a way to reach the chord to the couch and am having a glass of wine while blogging and watching the third season of Weeds. Mmmmm Yeah. This used to be a common occurance, when my mother actually had wireless and throughout my many many evenings at Palio coffee in SE Portland. But since I've been home there isn't much time or room for this kind of relaxation. The kind only several nonproductive hours on the internet can bring. So, with all of this time, comes many many googled searches of a song that came up on my ipod that I forgot I loved, songs that my bosses Ipod played while making dough (a mormon with suprisingly good music taste), or songs I've just generally been meaning to look up. Here comes another Music Blog full of totally righteous stuff. Listen up!

1. So my first venture in this edition, was to look into the band "Guided by Voices" because someone had the audacity to claim it was the best band to have ever existed. So in order to see what exactly they meant by that, I looked into their history and music and blah blah and basically found that they were so many things throughout the years, with different people, names, sounds, etc. So.... I gave up. Cause I'm lazy like that. And just not that interested in their music, although I'll leave that up to subjective review, because apparently they are considered very influential. So instead, I found a song with the same name as one of theirs, called "I am a Scientist" except its by The Dandy Warhols and its weird, but good weird. And The Dandy Warhols are one of those bands that I see on the telephone pole posters of Southeast Portland and I immediately think "you know, I'm just not cool enough for that". Whether I'm right or wrong, here's the song.

2. I've featured Rachael Yamagata here before, and I really really like her. Like girl crush. And so it's rather fitting that I found this one while catching up on the 5th season of the L Word with Sarah the other day. She's got a wraspy like voice, with awesome guitar skills, one of those albums that I might actually go and buy (but would rather have on vinyl). Lovely stuff. Her latest is "Elephants" but some of my other favorites are "the other side", "worn me down", and "I wish you love".

3. This is an old favorite that I've rediscovered. The album that features this song is the only CD that both Jesus the cook at Ole Ole and I could agree upon, so it was a frequent listen back in the day. And it's by Third Eye Blind. And if that doesn't bring you back to 6th grade, I don't know what will. Did I mention how sexy this song is? In a weird 90s rock kind of way, I find it incredibly romantic. It's called "I Want You" (forgive me for the terrible youtube, but it was the only nonlive coverage that wasn't someone's creepy home video montage).

4. Semi Precious Weapons is the band (and yes they do channel Shiny Toy Guns as wuold be expected by their name) and the song is called Magnetic Baby. It's glam rock the max and it fucking Rocks! A bunch of dudes in New York that are not afraid to get dressed up, wear tons of makeup, and look feirce? My kind of boys! And you know what? It's true......It's not my fault I look better in a party dress! :)

5. Speaking of slightly dj-inspired psychadellic glam rock, Shiny Toy Guns have a new album. And since they are such a hodge podeg of voices and sounds, there's really something for everyone. And we've been listening to it a ton at work. It makes me feel as if I'm right back in the Farmhouse, its senior year, and we're planning a fabulous party (complete with songs like this) that will most likely produce some ridiculous quotes, that will need to be put up on our quote door. I dont know. Just maybe. :) One of their new songs, called "I owe you a love song" (featured below), is probably my favorite, but I also reccomend "Ricochet" and "You are the One". It's very Kink Fm from portland mixed with madonna mixed with lady gaga, cough Ali cough.

6. Great voice alert! Haunting voice alert! Her name is Sonya Kitchell and is positively lovely. Her album "This Storm" actually comes out recently, and she channels (although through her own unique style) June Carter, Brandi Carlisle, and Norah Jones. Her song "Here to There" is on the radio right now (and featured below), but her other one titled "Running" is stunning (and now has a radio station on my Pandora account) she's just the right amount of soul-time that I often need at about 10:34 when I can't fall asleep.

7. And for a little throw back to the 80s, which is always a great thing to do when looking for covers or songs you wished you could remember to download, here's a classic song by Crowded House called "Don't Dream its Over". It reminds me of everything Lloyd Dobbler, and it's got the perfect touch of corny, kind of like how you feel when you hear a Phil Collins song on the radio and secretly love it :)

I could go ON. On and on. Seriously I have a gigantic list, but I will get this out there for all of my 3 readers to look up and obsess over. But don't you worry your collective cute little tushes, I will have more up tomorrow or monday.


Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Election Day 08 - Let Us Summon A New Spirit

My experience yesterday was, like many of you who support the admirable man that is Barack Obama, extremely exciting and momentous. But despite the usual day of working, staying plugged into and NPR, and constant gleeful conversations with friends and family, I was stuck in a room for 16 hours working as poll worker. And despite it feeling as if two days had gone by, it was one of the most amazing and rewarding experiences of my life. It was cliche and heartwearming to watch first time voters react with glee when I tell them that 'yes you can vote, regardless of changing your address 6 months ago, come right over her and I'll help you". Seeing the 'usuals' walk right in, grab their ballot and wave at the poll workers they've known for years as they walk out. We got our fair share of crazies, and even a guy who felt the need to tell me how high he was (I don't know WHAT that was about, but whatev). Most of all, I will remember the philosophical conversations I had with my parish deacon as we volunteered, reminding me why I swing so widly over to the Jesuit mindset of Catholicism, why I love living in Seattle, and when all else fails to pass the time, rubberbands are a useful means of play/war. And even though I am devestated by the passing of Proposition 8 in California, yesterday proves that change really is upon us, moderates have their shit cut out for them, and Democrats are now back on top. Things can only get better. Wooot.


Monday, November 3, 2008

It's Almost Over

On the eve of the most important political day of my adult life (because really, the bush years are actively being purged from everyone's memory and I did not find his election in any way important at the age I was when it happened), I thought it would be a good time for an update blog, as well as an explanation for my lack of blogging. I thought to myself, "oh you'll be online a ton when you're home cause theres actually internet at the house, unlike your house in portland". I was totally wrong in thinking that because, as I've recently found out, my mother has a control freak monopoly on the computer in the evenings that results in lots of bitching and moaning in the "I have to support this family" theme. So I tend to nod and agree yet secretly know that its because she doesn't understand computers and so her e-charting for her work takes twice as long. Sorry to break it to you mom, but you're computer illiterate. It's easier when you accept it. Anyyyyways, that whole situation plus the fact that I am a giant ball of stress the past week (that gets me thinking about jumping into a hole and drinking orange soda and nerds, god i love leftover halloween crap!), makes me not too keen or able to spend a lot of time online. Various family issues, that I would rather not divulge on here, make for a whole heck of a lot of emotional purging/cleansing/thinkig/crying episodes and I just can't be clever after those. Regardles, I have many 'from the world of food service' blogs stored away in my head and I am having music withdrawal because of the limited music at work, so a GIANT edition of "you heard it here first" is in the works. And speaking of 'on the edge of your seat' :) (and to bring it back full circle to the election) I am working the polls tomorrow at Ballard Community Center, so if you're in the area (even if its not your polling site) come on down and visit!

PS: Here's a teaser of the music blog, and my favorite song of the moment that will make you jiggle in your seat! It's from the recent Michael Cera movie Soundtrack and it's called Lover, by Devendra Banhart.


Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Halloween 08

Ok, so although I have a few friends that are somewhat anti-haloween (for various totally understandable reasons), I tend to enjoy Halloween and this year was especially looking forward to being a totally hot flapper girl at a coworker halloween party. I was planning on fun costumes, fun people, some alcohol, and most importantly the absence of the uber judgemental college take on this party which usually entailed sluts and pimps. So, since that plan has since vaporized along with my twenty dollars that I spent on some fucking hot lace gloves, I am going to do what I should be doing that night (considering I work at 630 am), which is hand out candy and go to bed early. Hopefully I won't run into any of these people on my way to work in the dark the next morning.


Thursday, October 23, 2008

Teaching Mother

Mom: so I'm going to this dance class, which one should I take? salsa, swing, or tango?

Me: Oh definitely salsa, back on the right, forward on your left, easy. But watch out for the gays.

Mom: I would love to dance with a gay man!

Me: But that's not why you're taking these classes mom, let's be real.

Mom: Good point, and where the hell am I going to put my purse, who will watch it?

Me (and Caitlin): that's what you bra is for mother, just stick in an ID and some cash and you're good to go.

Mom: oh, gosh wow, uhh, hmmm... I guess I would just feel like a hooker or something...

Me: but you'd be a hooker that got paid!

Mom: oh I have taught you well.


Tuesday, October 21, 2008

I'm Hopeful!

I have two really great things going on in my life right now, and at first I thought they were fleeting or possibly just a fluke, but they have turned out to not be anything of the sort. The first, the more amusing of the two, is that I officially have a MAD crush. And it's a real life crush, not someone that I stare at through office window blinds or at a bar. And it's the kind of crush that makes you want to talk about them all the time, for. no. reason. You know when all you want to do is talk about them, but a) there isn't anyone at the ready to gush to and b) there really isn't any great super-witty-banter exchange to tell because they fluster you too much to actually remember them!? Yeah, it's that kind of crush. And it is so incredibly fun that I find myself amused almost nonstop. But not in a creepy stalker kind of way, just in a silly girl kind of way. The other exciting thing right now, is that I am finally having conversations with my family (of course by this I mean my sisters and mother) that I have been dying to have. Serious conversations about the past 5 years that throughout that time, we were either too angry to actually start, too immature to verbalize, couldn't have because of the distance, or all of the above. Some of them are hard to have, but I realize now that I have been craving this kind of honesty and perspective about the past. Most of them are particularly important for me and my adult sister and mother to have as women, things about life and love and marriage and greif and job satisfaction etc etc. And these amazing conversations are perfectly balanced with the 'maria-focused' conversations such as how to properly get ready for a homecoming dance with a boy, and how to study for biology exams. So, that being said, I am officially over the hump and shock of being home 'in limbo' for a few months at my mothers house, and finally settling into the real life of a complicated Jesse woman, and it feels freaking awesome.

And if the myth holds true, then there should be that third exciting tidbit just around the corner. God I love being an optimist.


Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Updation: Head above water soon

Soon! I will be back with some much needed updates, quotes, silly stories, and a much needed music blog. For clarification, I have jumped head first into work here in Seattle which, due to an unforseen accident that has my boss out for 6 weeks, means a lot more than just full time. (On a side note, my silly stubborn father, who I stay with on nights when I have 6 am shifts, has decided to lock his computer.) Fortunately, tomorrow is a short day at work, and seeing as I'm exhausted all the time, I am looking forward to a long uninterrupted afternoon of internet reunion time curled up on the basement couch. Check back tomorrow!



Thursday, October 9, 2008

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Rain, and Bagels, and Nordstroms Oh My!

So I am officially home in seattle and have neglected my blog for no good reason. I chalk it up to needing some adjustment time. There were the typical first few days where everything is new and it felt like I was just in town for the weekend. Where staying up late to watch political tv with my mom and ignoring the giant mess of an unpacked room had no real consequences. But the reality set in, I forced myself to go to bed at a reasonable hour and attacked the immense task of fully unpacking. Although I have to point out that my ability to make cute outfits (for work and play) out of just a few items on a high class skill that I am eternally proud of, especially during limbo times like those were. So, its been a week of real life so far, with work and play and lots of sister bickering and making up. And I am happy to say that (gasp) living with my mother will be bearable. Yes! I said it. I just need to do my part. And spending many afternoons at Victrola or Mio Posto posting blogs (like today) will also help to maintain my sanity.

And since I'm full of new stimuli, new boys, new music, new annoyances, and new accidents here in my new environment, I will indulge in one of my favorite things....A List!

1. Cutting your finger with a giant serrated edge knife is only topped by cutting it that way while making LEMONADE. Yeah. And I have recently done the later, and it sucks. To say the least. It's still bandaged (aka not healing very well) and makes it really hard to do anything, and of course by that I mean all the important things like type and shampoo my hair and eat.

2. The tall women of my family do NOT ever take the basement stairs one step at a time, we gallop two steps at a time and it makes all look like we're eleven years old again. I love it.

3. Shopping with my grandmother is like walking on coals, it is usually really exhilarating and eventually successful but the process can also hurt like a bitch. Luckily, the most recent trip to the Nordstrom opening at Tacoma Mall was more exhilarating and successful than anything else. And for that I am grateful. Another reason I’m grateful….these boots.

4. BAGELS. Enough said. Preferably with hummus and veggies.

5. Maria's cute little butt is one of the perkiest things I've ever seeeeen, and its soooo much fun to slap unanounced. Not to mention that her team of freshmen girls are playing and continually BEATING seattle area varsity teams in her fall league! VARSITY teams people! I am so proud.

6. I have gone from working in an office of women to a deli of all men. It is interesting. And you know what? It's really FUN. Although I do miss the boy talk friendly environment that the SON provided (and it is a little daunting going into an already solidified dynamic of banter that often focuses on led zeppelin), I think I am holding my own. And as my coworkers claim, it helps to have a girl around…the tips are up :) And as it seems to be wherever I work, the jovial gossip mill is alive and well (and you know how much I LOVE that).

7. Closing shifts allow a few lazy mornings a week and of course that means a long walk, coffee, and being able to watch the girls on The View eat Elizabeth Hasselbeck alive when it comes to the probable inauguration of Obama as president. What a wonderful way to start my day!

8. The inside of my church was remodeled, the floor and the pews of this gothic yet classic style Catholic church were in dire need of attention and even though its nice and new.... I just don't like it. Especially the altar. It's terrible. And to top it all off....they took out my (to the left of the altar) section of pews to put in 'movable' chairs. Duummmbb.

9. I. AM. SO. GLAD. TO. BE. HOME. But, I miss Portland. And I am afraid that my dreams of late (about that longing) are taking their toll on my true feelings of restedness.


Friday, September 26, 2008

I'd rather be at Fashion Week - Part 3 - The Finale

Let's go out with a bang! Don't be afraid to check out Part 1 and Part 2... the procrastination Gods will bless you.

Vera Wang


Custo Barcelona

Chris Han

Zac Posen (holla!)

Aurelio Costarella

Ralp Lauren

Badgley Mischka

Carmen Marc Valo

Tadashi Shoji

There are many more to see, so check out the complete list of designers and droooool.


Wednesday, September 24, 2008

3 Days Left

I have three more days in this glorious city. Actually, less than 3 because my stubborn father wants to arrive (from seattle) at 10 am, pack, and leave by 12. Yeah. Most of those three days will be spent at work, finalizing things, trying not to cry and being taken out to eat by my lovely coworkers, and the other chunks of time will consist of the following things; Eating an early morning breakfast with Emily, staring at my room and willing it to pack itself, finding a song on itunes that I haven't listened to in a long time and think will motivate me to pack more, painting and filing my nails while watching the daily show, and seeing how long I can procrastinate finishing the packing process (yet knowing the whole time that I will none-the-less get it done on time). That is my saving grace, knowing I am a procrastinator and not really caring one little bit.

And if I get bored (or need further distraction) I can always prance around in my heels (see below).

More info and funny stories (inevitable around my family) once I have settled into the 'guest room' at my mothers/fathers house.


Monday, September 22, 2008

BookNerd - a rare species... possibly endangered

By book nerd, of course I mean....practically everyone I know. Yes, thats you. And contrary to popular belief, we're actually really hot and we don't have fungus on our toes and we have social lives and we are smart and funny and get the picture. But come one, I have to just put that out there, cause I'm tired of defending myself. :)

So, the Mercury (the Seattle version of the Stranger, for all you Seattle-ites) has rather note worthy film and book reviews, and I came across an interesting peice on a compilation book of essays that is coming out. It's about the United States of America. And I really mean...the States, themselves. One original essay about each state. Titled "State by State: A Panoramic Portrait of America". It details each authors particular perspective on a state of their choice. Not at all claiming to be factual, some are born-and-raised types and others are transplants, but each spits out their "witty conversation about states they're from and the state they love". Some tidbits that they shared in the review is the following:

"John Hodgman declares that sadness, anger, and frustration are what really pleases the average Bostonian. Alison Bechdel tells a story about moving to Vermont for a woman, but staying for the foliage. Susan Orlean confesses that she doesn't really relate to her home state of Ohio, while Anthony Bourdain admits that he's lied about being from New Jersey."

It's also got historical depth, as it is inspired by the project undertaken during the 1930s' New Deal that hired authors to write about their state for developing state guide-books, and it is unique in that it deviates into 'memoir territory' with passion and the pen of some famous bloggers and authors of our time.

And after all this gushing, you'd think I'd have actually read it, but alas I have not. Apparently the Mercury is just that good. Regardless, I can't WAIT to get my hands on this book and I suggest you don't wait either!


You Heard if Here First, Edition XI

As always, I am bursting with the seams about ideas and possibilities for a possibly-to-be-created-music-only blog, but alas I have too many other things going on lately (ie moving) and not to mention NO consistent internet. But that might change once I am settled into my 3.5 months in Seattle. Anyways, I have plenty of music to share, and here is some recent 'worthy of attention' finds......

1. I'll start off with a confession....some of my music...I find on Perez Hilton :) Yessss I knooowwww it's terrible trashy celebrtiy news website, but sometimes, it has really good suggestions. So whatever. So this find, a PH-er, is awesome light airy euro-pop sounding magic. It's called Bruises and its by Chairlift. It's another of those "oh I heard that on a mac commercial" cult hits.... But the sentiment of doing some really hard gymnastic trick (that would always result in a strained groin for me, pas the flexible age of 10) for someone else... is pretty cute.

2. Rachel Yamagata, who I discovered back when I was ob-SESS-ed with the Last Kiss soundtrack, has a new album and a lovely new song. She's definitely a little bit Ani, a little bit Garbage (the band!), and eerily similar to Tori Amos. It's called Sidedish Friend (aka my worst nightmare of any sort of relationship, blech). Go check out the song on her myspace page. And to see a really kick-ass live performance of her song that you might actually recognize.."be your love"....then check out her performance of it at Austin City Limits music festival.

3. Ok, this song has been ev-er-y-where lately and I don't know where I heard it first or maybe its an old song that I'm just now catching on to, but its SO catchy and COOL. For reals. Like really intelligent psychadelic alternative coldplay-esque rock. You have to GET UP AND DANCE to this one. But just a note: be patient, cause the first few seconds sounds like I accidently chose a recording of the bat exhibit at the zoo.

4. So, apparent by long standing appreciation for white boys with deep bluesy voices, ahem Jonny Lang ahem, I give you Marc Broussard. He keeps it light with "Love and Happiness", but you still can't help but wonder.... why is he so saaaaad? But, I guess thats why its called Blues. And he tours with my girl Sara Bareilles, so majah points.

5. Folk Rock. Folk Rock. Folk Rock. Say that three times fast. Well actually, it's not that hard, but it sounds good. To me at least. I love Folk Rock. A looot. That's the universal plight of daughters of hippie musicians. The Weakerthans, discovered through a friend who raves about them (and I do mean RAVE), they have been added as a pandora radio station at work. His voice sounds a little like the postal service, but not to so similar in overall sound. Forgive me for this random video, but all of the versions were live and I don't want you distracted by their ridiculous beards :) Also, shoutout to my mommy - they're from "the Peg" Canada, wherever that is.....

6. Ok. This next one is super dee duper random, and since I don't have enough ideas right now to fill up a 'covers only' version of "YHIHF" (oooh acronyms!) then I'm using it here. You know that weird but kind of good song by Justin Timberlake and 50 Cent called "Ayo technology"? It was basically about wanting the real thing, and not using porn? I don't know, maybe? Anyways, a Belgian pop singer called Mirow did an acoustic cover, and its kinda really really good, while at the same time...and it makes me laugh to...can you imagine 50 cent doing this version? Mwahaha.

7. REM's I've Been High. I never ever get sick of his voice. And I really think that bands like Coldplay and Radiohead should be very grateful for REM having 'paved the way'. Ok, off my soapbox. Just enjoy the song.

8. Long awaited, especially by my old sisters car stereo (it's had nothing to blast for such a long time!), new KILLERS album. Coming in November, and from the sounds of their new song, it's going to be greeeaatt!

8. Ok, so I've had this catchy chorus stuck in my head ever since... Oh I don't know, ever since my fabulous friend Kyle Burch grinded all over the dance floor at Club Escape to the techno remix version of it, back in the day! Touch it- bring it - babe - watch it -turn it - leave it - stop - format it! It's called Touch It by Busta Rhymes and it's caRAzy catchy and now (after googling) I know the right lyrics. I think I've been saying "stop-o-matic" for a while now :) And check out the adorable dance-routine by the cheerleaders at the beginning, that's just freaking adorable.


Friday, September 19, 2008

I deserve it!

These are my reward for finishing packing my life up and moving to Seattle. They should arrive on my "must be 95 percent finished" date. I'm going to wear them around my empty room untill the very last minute then sadly peel them off and jump in my dad's car. Oh yeah, uh huh, be jealous.


Thursday, September 18, 2008


When you work in cube land during the workday, as I do, it is like working in a tiny bubble of grey, with climate control and a very even-keel atmosphere, not to mention it blocks out anything 'real world' like grit and smells and fresh air. And because of this well maintained bubble, I tend to forget that I'm even in it. So when all of a sudden, I get a really weird feeling, like somehow my world has been intruded or altered or I'm being fucked with. And then I think to myself...."Wait, what is going on? What's that smell!? Omigod it's cigarette smoke!"....and you know what? It really fucking throws me off! It just plain pisses me off. That's all I have to say about that. And don't get me started on how my choice of curry chick soup went over yesterday at lunch. That is when I knew that I couldn't wait to be on my feet all day, making things with my hands, lifting large bags of flour, and not being afraid to wipe my hands on my pants :)


Tuesday, September 16, 2008

I'd rather be at Fashion Week - Part 2 (of 3)

Oh my holy blueberry pancakes! What a wonderful world we live in, and if that world was just full of New York Fashion week fashions....I would be perfectly satisfied. Well, not perfectly (that could only be reached if it included a tall gorgeous man in bed with me, after having made me said pancakes), but you catch my drift. :) Sooooo the ooogling and awwwing and 'trying to find something of the same style online for a fraction of the cost while obsessively linking maris my favorite finds' is over. But the fashion pictures are not! Here are my favs from the second third of fashion week (basically the 8th, 9th and the 10th, I looked up the schedule to make sure I didn't miss anything cause I'm a nerd like that).

Monique Lhuillier (I could do a whole post on her stuff, but I'll restrain myself and only post three)

Betsey Johnson (fuck yeah!)

Max Azria

Joanna Mastroianni (a for sure 'out of nowhere' new fav find)

Michael Kors (duh!)

Nanette LePore

Pamela Roland

Name that ANTM winner!?


To tide you over

There is going to be another Fashion Week Post soooon, a recap of the second half of the saga-event-affair-of-my-dreams, but for now I'll leave you with a random picture of the day. Remember these? I do! They're completely cute and useless, but somehow make me feel all vintag-y and remind me of having a complete kanipchen-fit every time one arived in the RedRose Tea box.


Thursday, September 11, 2008

It's like a hair coming out my chin, weird and annoying but also really interesting.

10 Things I did today that I don't normally do.....

1. Eat a generous helping of Scalloped Potatoes. Oh my good God in heaven. I will never feel that way about any particular food, as I did today in the dining room, as long as I live. Their incredible cheesyness and artery-clogging-cream power made me ignore all other healthy food options, and I had another spoonful for dessert. Hazzah.

2. Wake up (two days running) from bad dreams continually throughout the night. Shoot me.

3. Take ibeuprofen for a headache. I never get headaches. Ok, not never, but maybe two a year. So, this is most alarming. Plus it's also been going for two days.

4. Get a Venti Iced Coffee from the bucks of the Star. I don't like their coffee. But when you leave your house at 6:30 am (after the crappy sleep I got) and nothing else is open, they are like the golden calf. Impossible not to worship.

5. Stumble over my words in front of a boy. Ok. This is not as rare. I'm silly like that. But to be flustered, while on the job, is a little unerving. And he's younger than me. And even less well spoken than I..... Le sigh.

6. Eat lunch next to my sociology advisor from undergrad.

7.Yell "I don't want to LOG IN!!" at my computer with the most whiny voice possible. My computer, probably because it will miss me after I'm gone, has decided to sloowwwly die a sad and terrible death. I, on the other hand, am ready to move on from its 'bastard-child-of-a-computer' lot in offfice land. Buh-bye!

8.Google 'yankauer suction tips' images.

9. Hummmmm out lout without realizing that I am. Yeah. For a while too, before anyone said anything, apparently. Come on people! next time, don't let me go down like that. But at least it was this song.

10. Remembering that 7 years ago today..... the 'omigod, my father is in his underwear' moment, as we stood in front of the TV and realized that our world was about to change. A minute later the second plane hit the other tower. I will never forget his face.


Monday, September 8, 2008

I'd rather be at Fashion Week

I would sooooo much rather be here........ Here are some of my favorite designers that have presented so far.....

Fashion Week 2008/2009

BCBG Max Azria

Diane Von Furstenberg

Nicole Miller

Rubin Singer

Charlotte Ronson


Carolina Herrera (2)

Luca Luca



Miss Sixty


Peter Tom