Thursday, March 31, 2005

My Boyfriend's Back!

Image hosted by Photobucket.comThis morning when I checked the weather forecast on WHDH's website, it was a writeup from my least favorite weathercaster since RJ Heim, Todd Gross. I got dressed with a sorrow in my soul. Just now I checked the website again, and Pete's back! It has made my day awesome. However, I have some issues with his writing today and I'd like to point them out, if only to illustrate that my love is not blind.

* Charging for a meal on an airplane is bombastic! I'm as likely to pay for that chicken sandwich as I am for a case of the Chicken Pox.

Pete, bombastic is not a synonym for "ludicrous." Bombastic means "ostentatiously lofty in style." However, your point is valid. I too hate paying for airline food, and will usually arrive at my destination and spend $8 for a happy meal at the airport instead of eating mushy mac and cheese.
* Pilots sometimes lie about the weather in your destination city (they must be using

Why you gotta hate on, Pete? Isn't there some kind of code between meteorologists where you don't rag on each other's accuracy? I mean, you just predicted a foot of snow and when I woke up I saw only a dusting. While I'm not upset with the outcome, if I can't trust your word, how can I continue to love you?
I'm done "livin' out of a big fat suitcase."
(The Chilis)

This would have been the perfect opportunity for another Police reference. How about signing off, "your man in a suitcase?" That would have ruled. Also, who are the Chilis? I guess you're trying to prove the breadth of your musical knowledge, but come on. The Police rule.
I am glad that my boyfriend is back. I know he's been away, so he's not quite "on" when it comes to his writing. Hopefully he'll be back in fighting condition tomorrow.


Well, it happened.
I feel kind of awful saying "I'm glad that woman is dead" and not be referring to Ann Coulter or someone who actually ever did me wrong. But I'm glad she's not alive anymore. Now we get the pundits and talking heads debating this case for weeks, and a special all-new Dateline with Stone Phillips to run down every gruesome moment of this woman's life for entertainment.
Things come in threes, so expect Jerry Falwell and the Pope to go next.

Wednesday, March 30, 2005

Dirty Hippies

I usually don't go out on school nights. I haven't slept in weeks, so it seems (I am one of those people who needs eight hours to function), I'm poor and I've got television to keep me warm. I make it a point not to go out on Wednesdays, since it's America's Next Top Model night. But Alicia asked me a while ago if I'd like to go with her to see Rusted Root. The tickets were cheap and I didn't know the show was on a Wednesday, so I agreed to go.
Allow me to say this: I love the hippies. They're basically modern-day transcendentalists, subverting the dominant paradigm and whatnot. In high school, I basically was a hippie. I listened to Janis Joplin, the Doors, Fleetwood Mac (a little late to be called "hippie", but still), and the Indigo Girls, which some may consider more "dyke" than "hippie" but I'd argue it counts. I wore the gauzy skirts and knockoff Birkenstocks. I even wore patchouli oil. This was in the late nineties, kids. I love me some hippies.
I never listened to Rusted Root until I moved to Boston. In my first apartment, my roommates had a small boombox in the bathroom, so we'd listen to the tape that was in there, which had several Rusted Root songs on it. Of course, "Send Me on My Way" was on there, which is actually not a bad song to listen to while getting ready for the day. Rusted Root is an abbreviated jam band-- a Grateful Dead for the MTV generation. Some would say that Phish would fit that category, but Phish actually jams. For EVER. Rusted Root is Phish Lite-- for the kids who can't hold their pot.
It was an interesting crowd at the show. I expected to smell a lot of pathchouli and weed, but only the occasion whiff passed by. Behind me was a guy who looked a little older than me, who looked pretty well put-together when the show started, and by the end of the evening had put on his seashell hemp necklace and was hippie-dancing. There were a lot of guys wearing Magic Hat brewery t-shirts and Sox hats. There were girls with gauzy skirts and tiny stud noserings and their square-faced boyfriends who come from a factory in Vermont.
The music was good. The lead singer was stoned off his face and by the end of the show was spinning the microphone around towards the audience so they could sing and he could eat some organic Cheetos or something. But it was a good time. I got to hippie dance (which means flailing the arms, hopping up and down and bopping your head) which I usually only do at Indigo Girls shows. If it weren't for the fact that I decided to be a slave to fashion and wear heeled boots which were like torture strapped to my feet by the end of the show, it would have been really cool. It was an evening spent with the "preppy-hippie" (me), the former frat boys who graduated college in the early '90s and the entire UNH Greens society. All in good fun.

Keepin' It Real

I represent the streets. If the street is white-bred, lower-middle class and kind of dorky. But this is my street. Thanks to Yahoo! news, I have taken a gander at another street. And I am confused. The headline reads:

Rapper C-Murder loses conviction appeal

Now, it kind of sucks for this rapper, since he won't be able to buy the bling the sales of his new album, "The Truest (Bleep!) I Ever Heard." And I never heard of this C-Murder fellow. But, dude? The word "murder" is in your John Hancock. Isn't that kind of like putting stain-stick on the blood-stained clothes you were wearing but not making it to the laundromat for a week? Maybe you should have been C-Pacifist or C-Innocent Until Proven Guilty. C-Murder makes you look a shade suspicious.
I long for the days of Snoop Doggy Dogg (Snoop Dogg doesn't do as well for me) and Tupac. They were smart enough to have cartoon-character or Jewish holiday sounding names, respecively, so one wouldn't immediately suspect them of murder. Also, I like their tunes that I hear wafting over from The Street to Dorky White Girl Drive.

"Honey, but I always could accessorize..."

I posted a few days ago about the problems with fashion this year. Since it's not completely frigid outside anymore, people's thoughts are turning to spring and what's in and hip this year. The hippy, er, "bohemian" look is in, as are sparkly baubles and aviator sunglasses. But the coolest accessory that everyone in the media is talking about must be used under medical supervision. The complete "it" accessory this year is the feeding tube.
Some people wear them in, some people wear them out. But everyone is talking about them. It seems that if you want to be talked about at all, you've got to have one. All you need is a minor surgery to get one, but it's basically just a little nip/tuck action. You pop in on your lunch break, get the hole made, and then you're in with the fashionistas!
The major appeal of the feeding tube is that it gets you in the news. If your husband and family can't agree what to do with you or if you're the leader of a major religion you'll be especially popular. Old Navy will soon start producing knockoff tubes for those of us who don't get paid for interviews or praying. Starbucks is hard at work developing a latte that can be consumed via tube. Get your tube now before everyone's got one!

Monday, March 28, 2005


Dear Tom DeLay,

You are a hypocrite. Or, if not that, you perpetrated an "act of barbarism" on your own father. Which would you rather be?
I'd write more about this, but I'm too tired to get worked into a righteous lather today. Just thought you'd like another example of government at "work."

"Someone's got a case of the Mondays..."

I don't know what it is about Mondays, but for the past couple of weeks I've had a difficult time dragging myself out of my house to work. Once I'm here, it takes a superhuman will to make myself do anything but stare blankly at my computer screen. I like my job, but Mondays still suck.
My mind is on anything other than work. I'm thinking about an article I have to write. I think about pilates class. I think about my warm, fluffy bed. I think about sitting on the couch and watching talk shows. I do not think about the page spans in the running heads of an IM, I do not think about the space above and below A-heads. I do care, but I can't make myself on Mondays as of late. Tuesday is fine. Wednesdays are fine. Thursdays and Fridays are a bit spotty, but managable. Monday, you are my sworn enemy.
It's not helping that after a weekend of sunshine it's raining. I felt the cold when I woke up and stumbled into the shower, the ceiling hanging like the sword of Damocles due to the water damage. I hate all my clothes. The sweater I'm wearing was hanging in the closet, so the shoulders have little puckers where the corners of the hanger were. I'm also brooding more than a sullen teenager, so I'm listening to Tori Amos' Boys for Pele album, which I don't think I've listened to in several years. I think I'd break into hives if I listened to any cheesy pop today. I know-- hold me. I'm afraid too.

Friday, March 25, 2005

Bad Parenting

Not only will Paris Hilton suck you off on camera, she'll also make over your teenage daughter.
I know some people like Paris Hilton. Not in the "wow, she's such a humanitarian" way, but in the "wow, she screws guys on camera" kind of way. My former whatever-he-was looked at me like I'd said I thought George Bush was a hottie when I said that I found Paris Hilton repulsive.
"You're a girl," he said. "And girls don't understand what hot girls look like."
I feel like I have a grasp on female attractiveness. I know what girls have to do to get their tummies tight, to keep the hair from growing in unsavory places, how they have to be careful with their hair. I do not find Paris Hilton attractive. Angelina Jolie? I get that. Jennifer Lopez? I kind of get that. Paris Hilton? No, I don't get it. She's skinny and blonde, but there's just something about her that turns me off. I think she assumes that everyone thinks she's hot and she doesn't have to try. She paints her skin a shade lighter than a jack-o-lantern, dyes her hair blonde, puts her contacts in and goes out in some ridiculous outfit.
Maybe I'm a prude, but I don't think a sixteen year-old girl should walk around looking like this. She should wait to get to college like my peers did. I'd also be afraid to get that close to Paris, since she oozes STDs in the same way that Tara Reid does. I mean, good for her. Paris is famous for doing nothing of consequence in the world. At least Jennifer Lopez can make a catchy pop song. Angelina Jolie adopts babies and helps impoverished nations. Paris Hiton makes "movies" with her boyfriends then cries foul when he tries to sell the tapes. Shut up, Paris. Go cry in the piles of your daddy's money and leave the teenagers alone.
Don't even get me going on the mothers of these children. Back in my day (which I'm aware wasn't that long ago) my mother wouldn't let me leave the house in my Tori Amos t-shirt because it had a phallic mushroom on the back of it. My mother wouldn't allow me to watch MTV because she figured I'd learn how to be a whore if I watched a couple Janet Jackson videos. I think if my mother were raising me now her head would explode, and she most certainly would not have allowed me to be made over by, let's face it, an heiress porn star.
"Hey Mom! A casting agent was at school today, and he wants me to be on a TV show!"
"Wow, honey, that's great. What's it about?"
"Paris Hilton is going to buy me some clothes!"
"That stanky girl on FOX? I don't think so. What about that nice Simpson girl? Can't she buy you some clothes?"
"Mom, this is so unfair! All the guys would totally love me if Paris made me over. She's so hot!"
"I don't think so. Now go do your homework."
"You're so unfair. Jessica's Mom is going to let her, why can't I?"
"Jessica's mother also just got out of rehab, Amy. Do your homework before I ground you for being an idiot."

Thursday, March 24, 2005

Haute Couture, Bas Anatomie

Let me say this: I am proud of how I look. Thanks to the talents of my friend Amanda and the elliptical machines at my gym, there is far less of me than there was a year ago. (If you'd like Amanda's info, let me know. She's her own business!) I'm no America's Next Top Model (I'd like to think it's because I am too short, not a "side of beef") but I'm not fat, and definately not ugly. So, in theory, most clothes should look pretty good on me. Communism is also a good theory, and we know how that goes. Fresh off my Saturday trip to the mall, here's my problems with spring's fashions.

Problem One: The Silky Halter
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I tried this fashionable shirt on at Old Navy. My larger-chested friends tell me I'm lucky to have the little boobs I have. My paternal grandmother looks at my chest and says "I'm glad you've got something on there from your mother, because you sure didn't get those from our side." Apparently, I'm somewhere in the middle. I put this shirt on and was initally impressed. It was comfortable and light. I imagined myself walking through the city at dusk, getting whistled at by Red Sox fans. Then I wiggled along to the jet-engine decibel level song blaring from the speakers and noticed a huge problem with the shirt.
My boobs looked saggy.
I am twenty-three years old. I work out. I can do pushups (all part of my master plan to become a surfer this summer). I lift weights and, as mentioned, I've got some small B-cups. Somehow, in that dance move, I looked like a Grateful Dead groupie crossed with a Parrothead. I paced the changing room like a caged lactating panther, and noticed that with every move I made the boobs looked saggier and saggier. I'd need to wear a bra, but even a strapless would be noticable under the silky fabric. I sighed and removed the shirt, sad to let the cool pattern and silky feel go in the reject pile.

Problem Two: Commit to Shorts or Capris
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I don't know who thought these shorts were a good idea, but they should be given what-for. Even the model's legs look ugly in these shorts. I think stopping a tight short right above the knee makes the knees, calves and thighs look huge. It works in a skirt, but not as a short. Either wear shorts (ending far above the knee) or capris (ending slightly below the knee). The Bermuda zone should be avoided at all costs.

Problem Three: Strapless
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The strapless dress is my friend. I have huge shoulders that look good when exposed, and my arms aren't that bad. Also, the little boobs don't fall out of the top, so I usually have luck with these. I dismissed my bad luck with the silky shirt as a fluke, and tried this dress on.
I liked the fabric (I had to suppress the desire to rip that fugly bow off before even putting it on) and I was optimistic, but once it was on I noticed I'd developed something like armpit saddlebags. Under both of my shoulders, right at the pit, there was a blob of skin hanging over the top of the dress. I pushed the skin in, but, like a weeble-wobble, it wouldn't stay down. Maybe it's not that bad, I thought. I did a dance move. I removed the dress.

Problem Four: Where'd They Go?
(Sorry for the lack of illustration... H&M doesn't use jpegs on their website. Friggin' Europeans.)

Since there is far less of me, I can now fit into clothes from H&M and not look like a sausage that should be claustrophobic. I'm digging the hippie, excuse me, "bohemian" style this season, so I tried on a gauzy rayon dress. It had spaghetti straps, was low-cut with ruffles on the bottom. It looked cute, but I felt like I was missing something.
Imagine, if you will: the butt looks good. Everything is zipped with room to spare. But the boobs, the mammary glands that looked so impressive in the shirt I wore into the store, were gone. There was a chest, a flat expanse of desert much like the backdrop the models on the H&M website are shot against, that empties out into the greenish-blue sea of the dress, with only the slightest crest of a wave in the top. I lifted my arms to see if my breasts were there. Not much. Just a mere peep, a suggestion. I didn't look bad, but I expected more.

I think before I purchase any shirts or dresses for this upcoming summer, I'm going to have to make a stop at my neighborhood Victoria's Secret and allow the saleswoman to measure me and tell me what to wear with all these various shirts so I don't look like a feminist stereotype. I dread those saleswomen. As soon as you're fifteen feet in the door, getting used to the explosion of lace and pink, they're snapping their official tape measures and asking you if you need measuring. Or, you have to beg them to help you, and I always feel like a twelve year-old buying tampons for the first time when I do that. Being a girl is hard...

Incomprehensible Sputtering

What. The. Fuck.
This woman has become a pawn. The Senate, the Shrub in Florida, the Shrub in the White House and now Tom DeLay are using this woman to further their own agendas. It's difficult for the Democrats to fight back without sounding like murderers in the vein of Kevorkian, but since I've got no constituency to alienate, let me say this:
Shut the fuck up. God rendered this woman a vegetable so you can spew forth your conservative white male garbage? That's a gift? What about her husband and her parents who have suffered through years of her illness? The illness that's caused her own family to fight over her is a gift?
DeLay says:

"One thing that God has brought to us is Terri Schiavo to elevate the visibility of what's going on in America," the Texan congressman told a meeting of the Family Research Council.

It sure has. It's shown me that the conservatives will take time out from actual important work to pass legislation to futher their own social causes on limiting personal choices of Americans. It's shown me that Congress, the President, my governor will take time out of their schedules of vacations (yes, George, I'm looking at you) working on fixing the "insolvent" social security system to fuck people out of money, for their potential bid for President to meddle in the affairs between my family members because it furthers their agenda. It also elevates my awareness of the scum that runs this country, especially the loathsome conservative filth that comes from Texas.
As the fabulous TWoP recappers say, God is in the tub. God is not responsible for everything on this planet. We, as humans, have to make some fucking choices and realize not every face of the Virgin Mary on your french toast is a sign, nor is every sick woman an opportunity. Leave the woman, her family and God alone.
Image hosted by"Well yes, now that you mention it, the devil's proposal for my soul in exchange for power and hookers is a good one..."

Wednesday, March 23, 2005

Kill Me...

if it comes to this, y'all.
This whole Terri Schiavo business makes me sick. Her parents make me sick, the fact that the state government of Florida (of course it had to happen in Florida, because the nation needs more Bushes in the news) and lately the executive and legislative branches of the FEDERAL government jumping through hoops that have never existed for anyone else, ever, is making me sick.
This quote from Terri's mother is especially distrubing:

"When I close my eyes at night, all I can see is Terri's face in front of me, dying, starving to death," Schiavo's mother, Mary Schindler, said outside her daughter's Pinellas Park hospice. "Please, someone out there, stop this cruelty. Stop the insanity..."
I'm with her. I think starving a woman to death, even if she doesn't know it's happening, must be frightening. I imagine watching your daughter die is terrible. I'd advocate doing it quickly, because she's got no chance without that feeding tube. Here's where Mrs. Schindler loses me:
"Please let my daughter live."

What? WHAT? Your daughter is a vegetable. Sorry. That's mean and cruel, but it's also true. She is not your daughter. She is a human body, a shell of who she once was. She's not coming back, and she's not going to be your daughter or your son-in-law's wife again. The cruelty and insanity is arguing with your son-in-law for years, having your daughter's tube removed, then inserted, then removed again for years due to various court orders. She's nearly died several times. Keeping her body here isn't going to make her (or you) any happier. I'd imagine being trapped in your body without any control or any way to voice what you're feeling is hell. Personally, I'd rather be dead than live without the ability to care for myself. You are my witnesses. If I get knocked in the head while bowling or punched in the face by Sting's security guard and I'm brain damaged beyond all hope, take me out. I want the eternal slumber over a few more years in the mortal coil, parked in front of soap operas all day in some hospital room.
There's also this icky language creeping into this "national debate" that mirrors the language in abortion discussions. I hate that people are using this woman, who once had a full life and suffered an unfortunate event to advocate telling women that they can't remove a packet of cells from their uteruses. Terri has a "right to life." She does, and she told her husband that if she was incapacitated that she'd forfeit it.
I'm glad that the federal judge hasn't succombed to the pressure and put the food tube back in. Someone's got to have a clear head about this. I feel terrible for both Schiavo's husband and parents. Nobody wants to decide to end a loved one's life. God knows my Mom anguished over having my dog put down and the dog was miserable in her last hours on this planet. But at some point you've got to know when keeping someone alive is in your best interest and not theirs. (Yes, I know I just compared a woman to a dog. Yes, it's shallow, but I knew my dog better than this woman, so it makes sense to me. I feel like I am pissing my audience off more by the minute. I'll stop now. Now.)
::Steps off soapbox::
I'll get back to the funny tomorrow. I wanted to get that off my chest, because I'm sure y'all cared a lot.

Post for the Dumped

As I've said before, I hate dating. Hate it. I like men, don't get me wrong-- I love their smell, the broadness of their shoulders, the deepness of their voices-- but I hate the batting of the eyelashes, the being witty on command, the luring of a guy. Actually, I take that back. With the right person, I love all that. The part of dating I hate is the rejection.
While getting dumped sucks, doing the dumping sucks even harder. The only time in my life I ever dumped someone was about a year and a half ago. I met the guy online, and we had a few dates. I was mostly overwhelmed by the idea of being in a relationship, so I kept the guy around a lot longer than I should have. He was smitten with me, but I found him a bit dull. When we went to Borders, he and his friends ran for the automobile magazine section while I was left to wander the fiction and literature racks alone.
"Uh-oh," said the guy's friend, "are you a reader? Because Guy, he is not."
I don't read War and Peace or Moby Dick for kicks, but I try to keep current on what's being published. I read chick lit, I read contemporary fiction with the occasional classic thrown in for my own enrichment. After the 2003 ALCS when Guy was walking me home and he said "I should buy a Yankees hat, since they're obviously the better team" I knew he was history. Since he lived in New Hampshire, I called him to tell him I didn't want to see him anymore, and that he was "boring." Yikes.
I thought I would enjoy getting my karmic revenge on all the guys who ever dumped me (Steve in seventh grade who laughed outright, Ben in eighth grade who at least had the balls to explain why, etc) but it sucked. I felt like I was making a judgment on this guy who really liked me, chubby gut, little boobs and all. I was judging him, but I wasn't trying to be harsh. I just wasn't into him.
Fast forward to this past weekend. Kristen invited me to her friend Molly's house for an '80s party. I didn't have my '80s gear ready, but I wore what I now call my "power shirt" (I've worn it to two parties, got numbers at both) a new pair of jeans, my tall brown boots and some new funky sunglasses I got at H&M. I looked good. So we show up, and I'm immediately being chatted up by a guy named Mike. Mike's got sunglasses that are very similar to my own on, with a black t-shirt and jeans. He's about my height, with black hair. Not bad looking, and I was happy to get hit on. So I talked with him about my love for J.Lo, being broke and hating the Fraggles. As the evening wore on, I knew, even through my PBR haze, that I wasn't interested in dating him. Maybe it's shallow, but I want a certain feeling when I meet a guy I'd like to date. I want him to make me slightly nervous, be slightly hard to figure out, to make my heart jump up a little. It's not strictly an appearance issue, because God knows I love the dorks who aren't conventionally handsome. It's a soul/personality/pheromone issue. So when I was getting ready to leave, Mike asked for my number.
I knew I shouldn't have given it to him, but I have little guile when it comes to flat-out rejecting someone. I could have given him a fake, but that seemed like a weak way out. I thought maybe, when the fog of cheap beer lifted, I'd be willing to try again. I gave him my number, and he leaned in to kiss me. As many of you know (and some of you have been the beneficiaries of) when I've had a few beers, I'm like one-woman kissing booth at a county fair. I'll smooch just about anyone that I have any pang of desire for. I like kissing, miss the steady diet of kissing a relationship brings, so usually I'm up for a smooch. But I turned my head away and walked out the door.
Of course, Mike called on Monday. I saw the strange number and let the call go to voicemail. I should have just picked up and gotten it over with, because I spent all day Monday agonizing over what to do when he called and then spent all day Tuesday agonizing over whether I should call him back or just ignore him. Since I met him through a friend of a friend of a friend, I figured the odds are good that I would see him again at another function and the odds of an alcohol-fueled, slurred, "that's the bitch who never called me" were good, so I decided to have some nuts and call him back to flat-out reject him.
I had prayed to many Gods that I'd get his voicemail, but he picked up on the third ring.
"Hey, Mike, it's Amy, how are you?" I said, getting the "I'm sorry to tell you this, but..." voice that a vet uses to tell a kid his hamster died.
"Fine, how are you?" He replied, his voice happy to hear from me but confused by the tone of my voice.
"I wanted to call you back and tell you that I'm flattered you called, but I'm just not interested." My voice was weak, and one of my slip-on shoes fell off as I walked. I felt like the biggest bitch in the world.
There was silence, and I could almost hear him thinking Then why did you give me your number? I hoped he didn't ask, because none of the reasons I could verbalize would be nice or satisfy him.
I couldn't stand the silence on the other end of the line. "It's mostly because I just got out of something, and I'd just rather be on my lonesome for a while..." On my lonesome? I thought. What the fuck is that shit? A one-month dating relationship? Are you kidding?
"Oh. Well, okay. Thanks for calling me back," Mike said, and I closed the phone before he could say anything else.
I walked through the Common on the way to meet my roommate, and I thought about dating. I've taken to walking through the park on my way home lately, even though it's the complete opposite direction of where I need to go. I like watching the business people stride along, chatting into their headsets, meandering with their significant others, listening to the cool homeless guy recite the weather forecast to passers-by. Yesterday was an especially nice day in the park-- it was warm, and more people walked around, their coats unbuttoned, enjoying the lukewarm sunshine. Kids flew kites with their nannies and dogs caught frisbees.
As I watched the men pass by me, I studied them. Were they single? Some of them were cute, with button down shirts and dress pants. Some of them were probably Emerson students. I thought about the strangeness of dating, which I always do when something ends. What if I just let a guy go who would have worshipped me, treated me well, understood the fact that sometimes I'm not always fun, that sometimes I am down and mopey and misanthropic? I remember seeing a comedianne on Comedy Central once who was lamenting the dating scene in her thirties, mimicking picking through the ex-boyfriends of her twenties like used Kleenex. "He was too nice? Too nice? What was I thinking?" The odds of even getting started with a guy are staggering. There are the guys I'm not attracted to, so they're out of my pool. There are the guys who are married. There are the guys who are gay. There are the guys with girlfriends ("you can always change that," my grandmother assures me). There are the cocky, Ascote-wearing pricks I meet at bars. There are the ones who aren't attracted to me. I know that dating isn't mathematic, but if you think about the number of variables in the equation to find the "perfect guy" it's sobering and scary. But as I stood and waited for my roommate, I took out my book and stood in a patch of sunlight, and I realized that somehow it'll all work out.

Monday, March 21, 2005

It's Bad...

...when someone who loves you because you Photoshop your head onto the seven-day forecast thinks that another website dedicated to you is crazy.
Whoever did this site is a) really bad at design and b) freakin' nuts. Check this out. I know Pete would never be so crass as to call Todd Gross a tight-ass. Since this is the "only" website dedicated to a love of Pete Bouchard, I may have to rectify the situation. We shall see.
Today's Pete Bouchard quote of the day:

Like all seasons, there is beauty in spring: flowers, warm sun, cool breezes, melting. Then there's mud, clouds, rain/snow lines, lawn grubs, dead shrubs and bad maple syrup. Transitions aren't always easy.

The man is a poet and philosopher with a degree with weather-telling. Since I'm feeling a bit down today (I am a hard-living young woman on the weekends-- drinkin' PBR, screaming like I'm on Jerry Springer, then getting up to take kids to a parade) it made me feel good to hear that it's all part of the cycle of life: there can be sadness as well as joy. Thanks, Pete, for making my day better.

Dancing with Darwin

Or, St. Patrick's Day in Boston

Saint Patrick's Day, in the words of Kerri (pronounced "curry") is amateur night at the bars. The neophyte Guinness swillers put on their precariously tall shoes, black pants and green beads to saunter around the city of Boston, pay exorbitant cover charges for the privilege of drinking, don't handle their alcohol well, then puke all over the cold sidewalks. The steam from the warm puke on the cold stone wafts up like an extinguished candle while us seasoned drinkers (read: functioning alcoholics) step over their lifeless bodies, tisk-tisking.
Kerri had the good sense to stay in, but I would not be daunted by the newbies. I put on my green cardigan (I have a lot of kelly green, since it goes well with red hair) a skirt and my low black heels (I figured if the night went well and I drank until I fell off my shoes it would be best not to have far to tumble) and met Alicia and Missy at channel 7 for our evening of mildly drunken debauchery.
We'd originally thought we could get a decent meal at the Harp, but there was a $10 cover charge.
"I'm not paying $10 to eat dinner," Alicia said as we left the line at the Harp and stood on the corner debating our next stop.
We ended up at Boston Beer Works. It was busy, unlike the last couple of times I've been in there, but I still didn't have the good fortune to be sat in the waiter of my dreams' section.
"You can still talk to him," Missy said. "Talk to him!"
"He's not even my waiter. What am I going to say? 'Remember how you flirted with me on Valentine's Day?'"
"It doesn't matter," Missy said, glancing down as my handsome waiter sauntered by, completely overlooking our table. "Just say something."
Needless to say, I didn't say anything. We ate our dinner, I had a black and tan, Missy and I complained about the utter line of bullshit that is "let's just be friends" (her latest guy dropped that bomb earlier in the week) and Alicia patiently listened to us rant as she dreamed of her latest guy who, so far, has showed no signs of douchiness. People wore green around us. Some brave souls drank green beer. We left Beer Works to head out on the town.
We decided to try Fanueil Hall first. It's the go-to spot in Boston on St. Patrick's Day (or any day, if you're a tourist) but we figured it was early enough (8pm) to avoid long lines or a cover charge. As we approached the Bell in Hand, we noticed we were wrong. The line to get in stretched the along the face of two other bars, and we didn't even ask about the cover.
"Let's try Paddy O's," Alicia suggested. We'd gone there a few weeks before and it was deserted since it's relatively new. St. Pat's brought in the crowd, and when we showed our IDs the bouncer announced a $20 cover charge.
"Oh hell no," we hollered, stepping out of line and collecting our IDs. I'd noticed that Hurricane O'Reilly's had a $5 cover when we left dinner, so we decided to go back to North Station and settle there. After we walked back over, we got in line and noticed that the cover had doubled in the half-hour we were away.
I let out a yawp of frustration. "The cover was five bucks half an hour ago," I complained within earshot of the bouncer. He laughed as he checked my ID and took the twenty I handed him to pay the cover. He handed me three fives as change.
"Thanks," I said, trying to be inconspicuous.
"Count your change," he mumbled to me.
"Thanks!" I said with more enthusiasm. He was good enough to give the cheaper cover to Alicia and Missy too.
Since there's been no hockey, the bars by North Station have suffered greatly this year. Basketball only brings in so many people, and apparently the majority of the crowd in Fanuiel Hall hadn't given Canal Street much thought either. Hurricane O'Reilly's was fairly quiet. There was a number of people in the bar, and it was probably busier than any Thursday they've had in a while, but the crowds at the Bell in Hand made this bar look like a party in someone's living room.
A rock-a-billy band made attempts at playing Irish songs as Alicia, Missy and I surveyed the scene. There were a lot of couples dancing, and a lot of older people who stopped by after work, but not the bar full o' hotties that Missy and I had hoped for. We stood by the bar, just getting a feel for the scene.
About ten minutes after we arrived, a guy approached us. He was cute-- he had sandy blonde hair and brown eyes, was wearing a green Ascote t-shirt, flat-front khakis and appeared to be about my age. Not bad, I thought.
"You look like an elementary school teacher," the guy yelled over the sound of a rock-a-billy version of "Blister in the Sun."
"What?" I said. Either the guy had a fetish for elementary school teachers or I was looking dowdy.
"Your glasses," he said. He slurred his words slightly, but I couldn't tell if he was drunk or just had that recent-college-graduate-stoner-slur voice like my old roommate Kevin got after a couple of beers. "They make you look like a teacher. It's kind of..."
I still couldn't figure out what the hell he was talking about. I wasn't sure if I was being insulted or praised.
"Don't get me wrong," he continued, his breath against my neck since he had to yell to be heard above the music, "it's not a bad thing. I really admired my elementary school teachers. You just look like you teach young people."
I looked at him blankly. I couldn't tell if he was extremely drunk (he wasn't stumbling or having difficulty keeping his eyes open) or simply extremely bad at talking to women. I did the math in my head, and he easily could have been drinking for nearly four hours at this point.
"This is the worst conversation ever," he said. "I am such an idiot."
Since I've definitely said the wrong thing before with guys, I decided to give him the benefit of the doubt. I held out my hand. "Let's try again, then. My name is Amy."
"I'm Matt," he said, smiling and shaking my hand. A small guy came up next to him, and he introduced me. Matt turned away to talk to his friend, and Missy, Alicia and I went to the bar to order some drinks. Missy immediately made friends with the bartender, who ducked under the space in the bar we were standing near and started flirting with her. One of the other bartenders got our drinks. We turned around and Matt was still lingering behind us, and his friend had put his coat on.
"So, what are you ladies doing tonight?" Matt asked.
I scanned the bar, and saw guys who looked like much better prospects than my new friend Matt. Guys in button-down shirts and khaki pants, older guys, guys who watched the dance floor but looked afraid to approach a girl to dance. I started to feel the stifling feeling of not wanting to continue a conversation with someone I just met but not wanting to explicitly say that. I just wanted to turn around and gossip about the bartender that was winking at Missy as he got drinks for his customers with Alicia, not talk to awkward/drunk Matt.
"I think we're here for the duration," I said. "The cover is too expensive everywhere else."
"Do you mind if I hang around? I just moved here not that long ago and it is so hard to make friends."
"Um," I murmured, taking a gulp of my beer, trying to think of a way out.
"Unless you guys have some girls night or something," Matt said in a way that made it sound like I'd kicked him in the balls and wounded him deeply by coming out with my friends.
"Well, kind of, but if you're staying, we'll be here," I said, immediately regretting saying anything.
"What do you do?" Matt asked me as the band starting packing up and the DJ played "Baby Got Back."
"I work in college textbook publishing." Only one step up from elementary school teacher in the echelon of dorky professions. There is no cache or allure in textbook publishing for guys. I don't work in television like Alicia does, and I think most guys equate jobs in non-Conde Nast publishing with dwarfish, pale creatures who hiss at the sun and don't know who Ashlee Simpson is.
"Humanities only," I clarified.
"So business books? Math?"
"Oh hell no," I laughed. "Composition books, history books, literary anthologies."
Matt tilted his head back, and brought it close to me again like he'd stopped abruptly in a car. "So what's you favorite literary movement?"
I furrowed my brow and frowned. The speakers were blaring "Pour Some Sugar on Me," people had to scream to be heard over the noise, the room was dark and I'd turned my brain off at Beer Works. I wasn't drunk, but I couldn't for the life of me think of a specific literary movement. Which is pretty humiliating since I majored in English/Literature and consider myself a bibliophile.
"I think the advent of the short story was the most important thing--"
"No," Matt said, a tad frustrated and condescending, "a movement."
I eventually came up with transcendentalism, since Sharon had called me a modern-day transcendentalist in eleventh grade. "I'm quite a tree-hugging hippy, and I like the 'back to nature' and independent spirit..."
Matt cut me off mid-explanation. "Life is all about survival."
I blinked, and sipped my beer. I shot Missy and Alicia a look. I sensed that my patience with Matt was about to run out.
"Dreams, you know, aren't really anything," Matt continued. "Life is about getting by, not about dreams."
"What do you do?" I said with an edge to my voice.
"I'm an accountant," he replied.
"Ah-ha," I replied. Something about guys who study business drives me insane. When I dated a guy a couple of years ago his literal mind nearly drove me to insanity.
"Right now I'm at an entry level, making sure that people's investments go where my boss says. But some day I want to make the decisions myself, and I'll be making a ton of money."
What the fuck is wrong with him? I thought to myself. I just told him that I work at a textbook publishing house, in humanities, so one would think that money isn't the most important thing to me. I need more of it, and I joke about wanting a sugar daddy to help me out, but I'd only accept a sugar daddy with a soul, and I definitely don't enjoy guys who sell themselves like an investment-- if I get in on the ground floor, I'll be lucky to be with him when he's loaded.
"Dreams," Matt continued, despite the fact my arms were crossed around my chest and I was looking anywhere but at him, "are bullshit, really. My sister wants to study sociology, and I want better for her. I mean, she's the most beautiful person I know, she could totally be a model, but I'd never let her--" oh awesome, he's possessive and soulless, I thought, "--but she can do so much better. Life isn't about goals and dreams, it's about survival."
"Uh-huh," I said. Matt looked down, and realized he was out of beer.
"Do you want anything to drink?"
"No, thanks," I replied quickly.
"Okay. It's totally my goal tonight to get smashed."
Matt went to get a drink, and I turned back to Missy and Alicia. Missy raised her eyebrow to ask if I was doing well with him and I shook my head vigorously.
"I need to make him leave me alone. How do I make him leave me alone?" I asked her and Alicia, desperate to make a break. I didn't want to go home since it was only 9:30, but the idea of dancing with Darwin or continuing to feign any interest in him made me feel exhausted.
Missy and Alicia shrugged. I decided to go to the bathroom and hide out for a few minutes and hope he thought I left.
I stood in the cold bathroom, watching the girls in black pants and green plastic beads going in and out of the bathroom stalls like bees in a hive and thought about how much I hate dating. I hate meeting people, I hate having to be witty and fun on command, I hate trying to scream over some late-'90s dance song, I hate telling people I have no interest in them, I hate hearing people have no interest in me. I looked at myself in the mirror, my hair slightly disheveled, my cardigan making me look a little like a librarian or teacher, not the smoldering sex-bomb look the girls moving around me had with their green eyeshadow and beaming smiles.
I left the bathroom after a few minutes went by, and was relieved to see that Matt wasn't lingering around Missy and Alicia anymore. Since Matt had left, I felt comfortable enough to start dancing so Missy and I started to dance, with her bartender stealing glances of her as he helped customers on that side of the bar. As much as I hate dating, I like dancing at bars. I enjoy listening to loud music, dancing, getting some attention and generally just having fun. I don't enjoy dancing to techno, but put on J.Lo or Britney, and I am dancing the night away.
Alicia sat down at the table near us since she wasn't feeling well. Shortly after she sat, a guy came up to ask her to dance. He was wearing a white terry track suit with a white wifebeater underneath. He was tan in the color of a white guy who fakes-and-bakes too much and wore a diamond stud in his ear. He would be handsome if he didn't try so hard.
"Hey, would you like to dance with me," he said, holding his hand out to help Alicia out of her chair.
She smiled at him, and shook her head. "No, thanks," she replied.
He tossed his head back with a grin. "Come on," he chided, "just one dance?"
"No, thanks," she said again, still smiling, "I'm not feeling well."
"Oh, all right," he said, returning his head to its upright position and swaggered away.
I laughed and leaned down to talk to Alicia. "How is it that we get hit on by the skeeziest guys in the bars, but Missy shows up and get the attention of the one sober guy in the place? What the hell is going on in this world? I look like a teacher and you get hit on by Mr. Fake'n'Bake."
Alicia laughed and yelled, "I don't know!"
Just then, the man of my dreams walked into the bar. He was about 5'10 with the short on the sides, slightly longish on the top haircut that I like on guys. He moved confidently in the way that guys in their thirties move, like they know their way in the world and don't hesitate to get what they want. He had brown eyes and a nice smile, his hands were stuffed in the pockets of his black leather jacket. I felt my eyes widen as he met my gaze and I smiled. I looked down at Alicia, who had noticed him walk in too. She wiggled her eyebrows at me.
Hot Man set his jacket down on a chair at the opposite end of the table from Alicia, and as he pulled his hands from his pockets I noticed he had a ring on. I somehow always manage to pick the guys who are married out of a crowd. Hot Man walked onto the dance floor, still moving confidently, and wasn't a bad dancer for an older white dude. He didn't dance with anyone and didn't look interested in dancing with anyone, he just moved around the dance floor, singing along with the songs.
Hot Man had come in with his friend, Skeezy Pimp Guy. The SPG was short and muscular with the face of an old bulldog. He watched Hot Man dancing, but didn't move a muscle along with the music. He was smiling and looked happy to be there, but the dynamic of the pair was odd, like SPG was the Hot Man's gay lover and got off on watching him dance. I didn't think Hot Man was gay-- no self-respecting homosexual would be seen in navy khakis with pleats the size of fissures in the earth's crust. I wanted to ask him why he was out, if the SPG was his husband or his lover, to tell him he was handsome and confident and he'd reassured me that such people still exist after my encounter with soulless Matt, but I was afraid he and the SPG were out to pick up young college girls to be prostitutes.
The rest of the evening passed without incident. Missy got the number of her bartender, he got hers and called five minutes after we left the bar. Alicia didn't feel well and was quiet on the way home. I theorized about the relationship between Skeezy Pimp Guy and Hot Man, and my new caveat in the wish for a sugar daddy (he must also have a soul as well as oodles of money). It was indeed amateur night as we drove through Kenmore Square, BU students walking slowly like zombies, unsure of the ground beneath their feet. Until next year, newbies. For now, the Irish bars of Boston are once again for the unhip book publishers of the world.

Sunday, March 20, 2005

Inescapable Conclusion: Sharks

This is the best damn movie to ever be televised. Ever. "Roots" is a mere public service announcement next to this piece of cinema gold. I talk, of course, of Spring Break, Shark Attack.
Here is the summary from
My synopsis will be forthcoming tomorrow. I have not slept in about five days, so hopefully tonight I can experience a deep, restful slumber. Or something.

Lead Me Not Into Temptation, Rick Steves

Sunday morning usually finds me in front of the TV with a bagel and iced coffee, watching the Food Network. My roommate Deb usually chides me for using our HD TV to watch a woman with a southern drawl concoct something that uses at least a stick and a half of butter, but I find it comforting. It seems so easy when Paula does it-- mix up some fatty substances with something sweet, pop it in the over and pull out the pre-made model. It's concrete and easy to follow, and the sounds of a mixer and clattering pans reminds me of home.
Today I got up late, thanks to an evening of drinking PBR, so I caught Semi-Homemade cooking, which I hate. I changed the channel to VH1, but there was nothing good on there either, so I went to PBS to begin flipping through the channels. Unfortunately, Rick Steves' travel show was on. Rick Steves always makes me feel like a baby bird who hasn't yet figured out how to fly, watching the other birds flaunt how easy it is to break the bounds of the earth. Pack a small bag, get an open-ended plane ticket and do Europe right. Make friends with a handsome translator named Carlos, watch bullfights and eat tapas. Enjoy a lesiurely day in a palace, walk the streets, see the world.
The thing I regret most about my life so far is that I didn't travel before or during my time in college. It was the best time-- unfettered by student loans (at least the payment thereof) or a job with a 401(k). I could have been twenty, sitting on the banks of the Champs d'Alysee, eating crusty bread and enjoying the world. It's easy to romanticize it since I have a lease and all the chains of adulthood now, but then I look at middle-aged Rick Steves and wonder how he does it. Granted, it's his job to travel, make friends with people with sterotypical names and narrate it for people who rely on public television for their escape from reality, but I can't help but envy him.
Since today is the St. Patrick's day parade in Southie, I'm going to take the kids I babysit and approach it like a tourist. I've got novelty socks on, some green beads. I hope that I can enjoy it, and lose the ache I have to get on a plane to anywhere but here.

Friday, March 18, 2005

Save the Children!

This headline:
Teen abstinence may lead to risky acts

Made me laugh out loud. "Best tell the kids to get busy, or else instead of fuckin' they're going to be drag racing through the Big Dig without scuba gear! Quick! End all the faith-based funding and abstinence-only sex-ed before they start bungee jumping from the Zakim bridge!"
And I laugh, and my day is made brighter. I am now leaving early to see if I can meet Tori Amos and thank her for getting me through junior high, high school and college with her soothing melodies and craaazy lyrics. Cross your fingers for me...

Thursday, March 17, 2005

Fab. U. Lous.

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I've said it before, and I'll say it until he becomes culturally irrelevant because men will STOP WEARING PLEATS without a gay man telling him not to (ahem): I love Carson. Who else has the perfectly shorn balls to Be-Dazzle a professional baseball uniform? No one.

Wednesday, March 16, 2005

Taps for Bickfords

Teenagers have no native habitat to call their own. There are places generally associated with the young adult crowd; shopping malls, fast-food joints and Dunkin Donuts. These establishments are good for teenagers to congregate in, but they encourage leaving quickly. Order your Chalupa, buy your American Eagle jeans, get your Coolatta and get the hell out. Other than Starbucks, there are few places where a group of kids can sit and hang out for hours on end.
When I was in high school, the place we could go to and sit for hours was Bickfords. Bickfords is your typical family restaurant: the plastic "leather" booths, coffee mug with broken bits of crayons given to children or insistent teenagers, breakfast served all day long. The waitresses were brisk but patient with us as we spoke in our loud teenage voices, getting louder with every refill of the bottomless cups of coffee we'd all order.
On a whim, my mother and I decided to go to Bickfords in Hope Valley this past weekend. I was home for the weekend and, for some reason, I had no desire to go to our usual breakfast place. We drove down the barren end of I-95 and got off the highway. My mother and I expected the parking lot to be full like it was when we'd go when I was young, but the lot had only a few cars parked outside.
"I'm glad we came late," I said, parking by the front door. "The old people crowd must have moved on by now."
My Mom and I walked to the front door, where a small typed sign read "Today, March 13, is the last open day for this restaurant. Please visit our locations in Mystic or Warwick."
My Mom and I were surprised. Neither of us had been to Bickfords for years, and like things you don't see for a while and don't give much thought to, we expected it to be the same as we left it, but the restaurant had changed. There was still the ice cream menu above the counter in the front of the store. There was still the "please wait to be seated" sign by the doorway into the restaurant, but it was distinctly different. Gone were the plastic coin banks that had a dog come out of a doghouse and "eat" your money. The cash register wasn't by the front counter anymore, but a bank of stuffed animals. There was only a coin-operated sticker machine and an ancient Pac-Man machine where there was one of the claw machines and a kung-fu video game.
The waitresses moved slowly between the six booths that had customers in them. One woman sat my mother and I near a booth by the window, and as she brought my mother her coffee I marveled at how much the place had changed in only a few years. The Bickfords in my memory was always bustling with harried waitresses bringing juice and water to tables full of families with multiple generations eating together, tables with old women out for their weekly breakfast, Harley guys guffawing as the waitresses joked with them about the weather.
There was no music playing so the restaurant was eerily quiet. A group of teenagers got up from a table in the middle of the room. My Mom and I listened in as people asked their waitresses why the restaurant was closing.
"They called us on Friday to tell us we'd have no jobs after Sunday," one older waitress sniped to the booth next to us. "I'm nearly fifty years old, and I've never been on unemployment, never been on TDI, and here I am," she finished, tossing a towel over her shoulder and sauntering away.
"That's horrible," my mother said to the waitress, who ignored her.
"I know how they feel," I replied. Shortly after I graduated from high school the Discovery Zone I worked at closed without notice, leaving scores of kids without a place to have their birthday parties and me without a job. "I hate when companies treat people like that."
"Well," my mother said, sipping her coffee and grimacing, "that's corporate mentality. The hell with the little guy."
"It's really sad. Remember how we used to come here all the time with Bill?"

My Mom nodded. We'd come almost every Sunday with my stepdad when I was really young, but we didn't come as much shortly before they got divorced. Bill would get a Big Apple (a pancake as big as a pizza covered in chunky applesauce) and my mother would get a Baby Apple (the same thing, but only as big as a normal plate). Sam and I would color on our placemats and try to find quarters so we could try to win a stuffed animal from the claw machine when it was time to leave.

"And I used to bring Ms. Fell's kids here when I babysat for her."
My high school math teacher was going for her masters, and she and her new husband needed a babysitter to watch her seven and nine year-old kids on Wednesdays. I'd met the kids when Ms. Fell dragged them to a drama club presentation of Alice in Wonderland. Her daughter Allyson and I hit it off immediately. Her son Joe was old enough to play cool at first, but we bonded over playing Tetris and Mario Brothers 3 on their ancient Nintendo. Sometimes Ms. Fell would buy pizza strips for me to cook, but most nights she'd hand me twenty bucks and have me take the kids to Bickfords. I remember this well because one time I wasn't feeling well and ate a thanksgiving sandwich (turkey, stuffing and cranberry sauce on thick bread) and later that night I came down with the flu.
I think I came down with the flu after having jumped in the ocean a few weeks prior. It was January, and my friends and I had just finished our midterms. Since we had half-days on exam week, we had a whole afternoon before us with nothing to do. We got together at Will M's house since it was only a mile from the high school to figure out what we'd do.
We were wired on the adrenaline of test-taking and winter. Will wrote "I have finished my exams" across his thermal shirt in Sharpie. Ben put Nine Inch Nails on the stereo as we waited for everyone to show up.
"Let's go swimming," Will suggested. We all laughed, and decided it was a good idea. New Year's had been a few weeks before, and the image of people doing the Polar Plunge at Narragansett Town Beach was still in my mind. They all had smiles on their red faces, happy to be in the ocean, if only for a moment.
Before we went to the beach, we stopped at Bickfords. Will had added "and I am going swimming in the ocean" to his shirt, and the waitress chided us for the bad idea. The restaurant was full even in the middle of the afternoon, so we had to sit in the smoking section. I coughed as I ate my grilled cheese and we spoke in screams like teenagers do.

"It's like eating at a funeral parlor," I commented to my Mom as we ate. She had a baby apple and I had pancakes and an omelet. The waitresses were sad, and the old women behind us lamented not having a place to eat breakfast anymore.
"You can go to Mystic. They have a buffet there," the waitress offered.
"Oh. Well, that's nice dear. Thank you," one of the women replied.
My Mom and I flinched, thinking about the old women having to drive an additional twenty minutes down the highway for their Sunday meal. The waitresses bickered with the cooks in the kitchen without much enthusiasm. It was as if the life of the place had been sucked out long ago, and we were watching the carcass be lowered into the ground.
After we ate and paid the bill, my Mom left the waitress $10 and I tossed my last five onto the table with it. "She needs it more than I do," I commented, "and that's saying something."
Fare thee well, Bickfords. You'll be missed.

The Love Continues...

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If I had the Photoshop acumen of my meteorologist boyfriend, I'd totally do an "if they mated" and post it. Alas...
Check this forecast out!

This "block" in the upper atmosphere has steered all our storms south. Snow is now flying in parts of the Mid Atlantic as they remain in a storm zone over the next couple of days -"somewhere only we know" (Keane - not New Hampshire ((they have two es)) the band).
So when will we "sleep with butterflies" (Tori Amos) fluttering outside our windows? No time soon. I said it was storm-free, not cold-free. Upper atmosphere just won't allow a warm up...yet.

Not only does Pete mention Keane, he mentions Tori Amos (and her completely fabulous, best-breakup-song-ever new song). Maybe he'll buy me a ticket at take me to her concert this spring, and afterwards we can talk about what kind of clouds are in the sky, and then we can run away to England together and see Keane and talk about how the weather is different in a temperate climate.
...sigh. Only in my dreams.

Tuesday, March 15, 2005

Oh Dear God

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My two favorite men caressing each other? The only way that could get any better is if Sting were there singing "Every Breath You Take." Johnny has a bit of a "no means no, Carson" look on his face, but he's just overwhelmed by the new feelings that are coming over him. I love hairy, brutish, dumb baseball players and I love flaming, skinny, snarky homosexual men so this is just the cat's meow to me.
...I think I need a moment. I am so not kidding.

Ode To Geeks

O computer geeks! You are my heros
when my computer croaks, nearly dying
you can decipher the ones and zeros
seemingly without trying.

O nerds! Players of Everquest
you smell of coffee and canned air
I tease you until my hard drive doth protest
and my minimal knowlegde of computers I do despair.

Your physique is small and slight
but when it's the blue screen of death I see
you seem to grow strong, like a knight
preparing to fight (at least, it seems that way to me).

With tiny screwdrivers and a map
of the computer you set to work,
you unscrew, remove, undo the case with a snap
"that wasn't so hard," you say with a smirk.

Then the laptop, it boots up with a "bing!"
And I jump for joy, blinded with delight
and you say, humbly, "eh, 'twasn't a thing."
But you, o geek, have solved my plight.

Geek Love, Part Deux

I lived a troubled existence this weekend. Granted, I was surrounded by family and friends but my baby was in the hands of another. My beloved laptop, purchased after 9/11 to support the floundering economy (oh shut it, people have had worse reactions to that tragedy) was being disassembled in Worcester by Dan, the Bedford tech guy and angel sent by whatever god the geeks worship (drunk on the ambrosia of Red Bull) to save me from weeping over the dead carcass of my iBook. I thought that it would last forever in its functionality, but my hard drive had other ideas and decided to shit the bed. Thankfully, Dan was the patient parent to my computer, cleaned up its mess and installed a newer, bigger, faster hard drive this weekend.
This is what my baby looked like at some point this weekend. It was opened up and vulnerable, but now it is back in fighting condition. The hard drive makes little whirring noises when it plays mp3s. I have ample space for mp3s and porn... um, works of great literature. Not only did the hard drive replacement double the space on my computer, it allowed me to update my iPod without it freezing up midway through. Now I don't have to talk to anybody, ever since I'll have my hipster headphones installed in my ears again, deafening myself with crappy music and trying not to dance on the train at 8am.
Hopefully a poetic mood will hit me, I'll dig up my rhyming dictionary and I'll write an ode to Dan, because I'm seriously considering offering to father his children, bake him some cookies or make him a drink that I made with the mojito mix Kerri and Will bought me and margarita mix Sharon bought me (sounds nasty, tastes nasty until you hit the second sip). If you need me, I'll be shaking my ass to Jennifer Lopez's masterpiece "Let's Get Loud," which I just now remembered dancing my ass off to at a bar a couple weeks ago. Ah, memories.


Why was "wedgie" not in a dictionary until now? This is a sad oversight by the keepers of the English language. I'd also like to mention that "douchebag" should be added, if it's not already there.

Monday, March 14, 2005

Why I Love New England

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"Very funny. Put the pussy in the snow. Let me back inside. Now. Or the bed gets the hairballs I'm working on."

Complaining about living in New England is like complaining about your family: it's okay if a member of the family complains about crazy aunt Sue, but if some guy in line at the bank cracks a joke about her being off her meds you get offended. I caught some slack in the comments section of my Random Things post for complaining about the snow that fell on Friday and Saturday which is understandable since I was in a sour mood and looking to bitch. That's the wonder of the internet, and since I published my bitching y'all have the right to give me what-for when I've said something dumb. But, since ~bc has reminded me of my freedom to move anywhere I'd like I'd like to take this opportunity to explain why, through foot upon slushy foot of snow I stay in New England.

  • My friends and family are here. I've given a lot of thought to moving to London (not known for it's great weather but it doesn't snow too often) but the cost of living over there is prohibitive (also sorely lacking the dual citizenship marrying a chap would bring, so it would be a temporary move) but leaving long-weekend road trips, beers with Butchie and the Tin Knockas and $6 pitchers of PBR keeps me here when the flakes start to fall.
  • As the Standells say, I love that dirty water. Boston is a great city: small enough to understand how to get around, big enough to avoid people I went to high school with. I love walking through the Common, staring at tourists and ogling cute businessmen as they walk home from work even when I nearly fall on my ass due to the glare ice on the paths.
  • I try to remember all the good things that happen in Boston in the spring. I love the Boston Marathon, WBOS Earthfest, the Red Sox filling the sports section with news other than basketball and rugby, the Swan Boats returning to the park, drinking beers on my porch and watching the T rumble by for hours and sleeping with my bedroom windows open.
  • The fine beaches of New England. Nothing better than Narragansett Town Beach in summer, the fine sand between your toes listening to the waves crashing and the old guys on Harleys driving along the sea wall to impress each other.
  • The fact I can be at my Mom's house in under two hours, doing free laundry and eating some most excellent mashed potatoes.
  • I've been to the Midwest, and it sucked. Only flat and corn for hundreds of miles. I'm sure there was something interesting, but other than the Iowa-80, I didn't see anything that was of interest to me out there.
  • Florida? Brings nothing but heartache and woe. Also, it would be fine to winter in Florida but the fact that the houses come with industrial-strength netting built around the back porch to keep the seagull-sized mosquitoes at bay makes any other season in Florida really unappealing.
  • California? I hate traffic. And fake boobies.
  • The Mews
  • Boston Beer Works
  • My job
  • Brookline Booksmith
  • Proximity to Portland, ME, where I plan to spend the summer weekends I'm not in Rhode Island because, apparently, that's where the hotties are
  • Rollerblading on the Esplanade
  • Mojitos at Bonfire
  • Clam chowder
  • Cannoli
  • Red Sox!
  • Paw Sox!
  • Celtics?!
  • Blue states! Florida=Red State.
  • Free Shakespeare in the summer
  • Free movies on the Hatch Shell in the summer
  • Ice skating on the Frog Pond in the winter
  • Snow days! Can't have a snow day without snow.
  • You have an excuse to buy more clothes (or a red wool coat)-- summer and winter wardrobes
It's a Buddhist thing, really. A friend of mine pointed this out to me, saying that New Englanders know how to enjoy summer because we only have a few months out of the year to be outdoors. You can't have pleasure without knowing suffering. Right now I'm not caught for more than an hour at a time without hand lotion and the skin on my face is about to flake off. But when the weather warms up and I drag my spring clothes out of their plastic bins winter will be a faraway memory as muggy nights at Fenway/McCoy, weekends in Maine and flip-flops replace my walks through the park with my face buried in a scarf.

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Friday, March 11, 2005

My Meteorologist Boyfriend

New Englanders have very close relationships with their television personalities. Maybe it's the same way in other areas too, but even as a kid I had favorite television personalities. In high school, a friend of mine had a huge crush on Doug White, an anchor at channel 10 in Providence. My mother has a crush on Frank Coletta, the happiest man to ever drag his ass out of bed at 3:30am. In Rhode Island it was especially evident that people loved their anchors and weathermen, mainly because the state is so small you were bound to run into them at some point. I saw RJ Heim eating at Goeff's on Thayer Street in Providence (but didn't say anything because the guy is a raging prick, so I hear). My friend Alicia was close friends with a reporter who used to work at channel 10 who provided her with career and personal advice. Now Alicia works at channel 7 in Boston, usually in the evenings.
One Saturday night we had plans to go out, but she had to direct the 11pm newscast so she invited me to watch the news in the studio. She asked in a tone of voice that made it sound like I'd be watching paint dry on the side of a particularly boring barn, but I replied in a tone that made it sound like I'd be a roadie for Sting or something. "Awesome! Yeah, I'd love to!" Alicia let me in the studio, her eyes low and bored, while I jumped around like a kid who'd met Mickey Mouse. "Look, there's where the weather guy stands! Wow, that's where Randy and Caterina sit! There's the breaking news desk."
"Yeah," Alicia said as if I was overwhelmed by the sight of a photocopier.
While I have a raging non-sexual crush on Randy Price (he's gay and lives with his partner and twelve cocker spaniels, sadly) my one true television personality love is Pete Bouchard, the meteorologist. He's bald, married and has kids, but my heart beats a little faster when I see he's written the blurb on the website. He uses references to obscure classic rock songs. He even used the Police today!

Are you "Driven to Tears" (Police) with the forecast?

Yes, but that's not the point, Pete! You even know obscure Police songs. As Paris Hilton would say, that's hot. And who doesn't love a man who is confident enough in himself to illustrate Saint Patrick's Day on the 5-day forecast with his face on the body of a leprechaun?
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I love a man who knows his way around Photoshop. (Hi Matt Nash, if you're out there!)
According to Alicia, Pete is a fabulous guy when not on camera too. So, to review, he digs the Police, he's humble, funny and older. He is perfect for me! I seldom see him on the actual newscast (I think he works days, and Todd Gross, who gets on my last nerve is usually on in the evenings) but I enjoy reading his weather forecasts, even when it involves "snow" and "accumulations," while the same words in Todd Gross' forecast leads me to saying "fuck off and die, Todd." I can only hope that Alicia invites me back to the studios sometime when Pete is working so I can snap a picture with my camera phone and proclaim my undying geek love for him.

Random Things

  • To all the rich assholes in Brookline who can't be troubled to shovel their driveways/sidewalks: fuck off and die. It has snowed endlessly for two months. I hate all of my clothes since I can only wear jeans and sweaters. Jeans and sweaters. No cute shoes, as they will be ruined by slush. No skirts, since I'm a wuss and I hate the cold arctic wind against my shins. All I want is to walk home from the gym without falling. And you, rich Brooklineite, have impeded me from that goal. Especially you jerkoffs at the far end of my street who leave your sidewalks unshovelled when your sidewalk is on a hill. On a hill without operational streetlights. You apparently hate your fellow man and don't care if they fall down and severly injure themselves or their dignity so I hate you. I hope when you are old you break a hip and nobody helps you up and ravens eat your rapidly freezing eyeballs from your skull.
  • I had the very pleasant surprise of finding out that the electric company cashed my check, so the $22 in my bank account are actual real dollars that are unaccounted for. I now have enough money to get back to Rhode Island. Hooray! And, god willing, a cookie with my lunch.
  • Are you aware that the library will let you use a book for free? Somehow I always forget this fact. I'm kind of a snob with my books, because if I read it I want to be able to keep it to impress upon people that I am a well-read woman so I usually buy books (hence why I don't read much). I went into the library, and now I have a book to read. Awesome!
  • I really, really, really hate snow. Like, a lot. Most people don't know that I actually enjoy winter between the months of November and January. Between February and April, it's just excessive. Especially since it WILL NOT STOP SNOWING. But I will not be daunted. I will drive my mother and I down to Ikea, doing 75mph the whole way, tearing ass down I-95 to stock up on lanterns and $.99 beach bags. BECAUSE SUMMER WILL EVENTUALLY COME.
  • When replying to a group email inviting you out, do not "reply to all" with the details of your weekend. Nobody cares if your parents are coming into town except the person organizing the event. Please use the "reply" with the SINGLE face next to it. While I am not busy, I don't like having to delete emails that don't concern me. I keep hoping that it's an email saying that free food is in the office.
  • Tacos are awesome.
  • As are chocolate chip cookies as big as my face.

Death by 3M

Could this common household item cause your death?
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There is an entire industry that would like you to believe that a sponge will kill you. Unless that sponge is sprayed with chemicals that cause it to be "anti-microbial." Because the sponge, which you've used for years (hopefully not the same one continuously because, ew) on your dishes is a homicidal maniac, ready to fell you with one misplaced cold or flu germ. It's beady little soap-holding pores are ready to take you to Kingdom Come.
I've always been a sickly person. I catch colds, morph them into infections of the sinuses/lungs/throat and get way more sympathy than if I just had the sniffles. If I catch a cold, my mother immediately advises me to get to the doctor before I need yet another inhaler, antibiotic or week home with pneumonia. If I get within ten feet of a sick child, I have what they've got. If anyone should be purchasing these products, it should be me, the sickly kid raised by a germ-conscious mom.
Yet the whole thing is ludicrous to me. Last year, during a company remembrance of a coworker who passed away, the office manager put out tissues. Not the average Kleenex, but tissues with antibacterial orbs floating in them. It was kind of disturbing to think of the little bacteria in the tears I was trying not to let out of my eyes falling onto the tissue and instantly dying. Since I was in quite a state anyway, this just made me more upset. I didn't like crying into what, ironically, looked like bacteria dyed blue under a microscope.
That makes soap, tissues, aresol sprays, toilet bowl cleaners, lotion, "waterless soaps" and a bevy of other products designed to kill germs. When I was a kid, it was antibacterial soaps, which kill things that make you puke/get a stomach bug, such as E. Coli. Now the newest thing is antimicrobial, which kills microbes, such as the ones that kill cold and flu germs.
Instead of developing these products which kill germs (or cause them to adapt, making them resistant to medicines that will help kill the germs in severely ill people) I think someone needs to teach a refresher course on basic hygiene. All the antimicrobial sprays and coatings won't help if the general public doesn't understand that squirting some soap on your hands, having the soap slide off your hand when you stick it under the faucet, rubbing your hands a couple of times and then turning off the water won't cut it. You need to use soap (any old kind will do-- it doesn't have to be anti-anything), warm water and a little bit of friction for longer than .5 seconds and then the germs? The bacteria? Are gone. Off your hands, and down the drain. Easy!
The kitchen sponge is a bone of contention at my apartment. My roommate Deb, who is far more germ-phobic than my other roommates and me, is especially persnickety when it comes to the kitchen sponge. It has its own special holster that is has a drain so it doesn't stand in tepid post-wash drips for hours a day. Deb picks the bits of cheese and charred sauce remnants off it, and replaces it about once a month. She and Emily fight over using the sponge on the kitchen counter/table. Deb is fervently anti-countertop, while Emily doesn't give a crap, which sends Deb into orbit when Emily wipes off the table and puts back the sponge without rinsing. I believe that the kitchen table, especially when coated in chicken juice and bits of food (which it is when I'm done cooking) should be sprayed with a kitchen cleaner (Simple Green is what's under the sink) and wiped clean with a paper towel.
Not to mention that not being exposed to germs makes you get sicker easier. Fact. It's a war of good and bad bacteria (you shell out $.89 a yogurt to eat bacteria) throughout your body. If you catch the occasional cold, it boosts your immunity. (Of course, now I can't find the study that backs that claim up, damn Google.) It keeps kids in daycare from developing weird allergies. People lived for thousands of years, bathing way less frequently than we do, without anti-germie products. While I don't advocate eating undercooked chicken or anything, we all need to chill the hell out about germs.
And if you get sick? So what? I can see if you have a compromised immune system that you'd like to avoid the germs, but for the folks with normally functioning systems you should just chill out. You get to take some time off from work, crash on the couch for hours on end (without the "I should be doing something" voice kicking in), watch Ellen and knock yourself unconscious with cold medicine. It sucks when you're about to go on vacation, or when the Patriots are riding through town, but a cold is an excuse to chill. So use regular Kleenex, wash your cutting boards thoroughly after chopping up some fish, keep your sponges fresh and you'll survive. At least until your cat shoots you.

Wednesday, March 09, 2005

Golden Goodness

McDonalds-- shut the hell up!
Apparently, McDonalds is attempting to shift the focus off their fried foods and onto the "healthy" foods they offer. Which is complete and total bullshit.
Believe me, when I saw Supersize Me, I was put off my nuggets and gallons of soda for a while. Across the street from the theater I saw the movie in is a McD's, and I jeered it as Morgan Spurlock vomiting up his super-size meal played itself on endless loop in my mind. I even walked home from the theater to atone for the butter I put on my popcorn. It's sobering to think about what actually happens to your body when you eat that much processed, nutritionally empty food.
Eventually, McD's won me back. It was through advertising french fries. I don't seek out McDonalds, for the most part-- I don't like their soggy hamburgers or chewy chicken sandwiches. My fast-food dollar is almost entirely spent at Wendy's, where the chicken resembles chicken and (if I suspend disbelief) I can imagine the tomatoes being grown in nature. However, despite my love for the spicy chicken sandwich and Frosty, Wendy's has not yet perfected the art of the french fry. There is the rare instance when Wendy's gets the fries just crispy enough with the right amount of salt when I am glad to eat them. Most times, the Wendy's fries are soggy, like the oil wasn't heated hot enough and it seeped into the "potato," or they taste like gruel because there's no salt.
Burger King's fries used to be pretty good, but in an effort to distinguish themselves from McDonalds, they introduced the "new" fry back in the '90s, which I hate. BK's "new" fries taste more like a salty loaf of bread than a fried potato covered in salt. Thus, Mickey D's is the home of my favorite french fry. Once I catch a whiff of them, I'm done for. I will not rest until the red cardboard box, grease stains forming at the bottom of the box is in my hand. When I take the train back to Rhode Island and I leave from South Station, I am powerless to resist the call of the Golden Arches.
Now that McDonalds has made the foolish decision to advertise fruit and salad, I can guarantee I won't be walking through the doors that Ronald McDonald built anytime soon. McDonalds, since it's inception, has marketed itself as a hamburger joint. When I was a kid, it was a huge treat to drive through ("thru") and get a Happy Meal. I think the average person with a frontal lobe understands that food cooked in oil and slathered in sauces isn't good for you to eat on a regular basis. I also remember, back in the '80s and '90s, watching my Mom suffer through many withered McDonald's salads. The bottom of the bowl had a quarter of an inch of standing water, the lettuce was brown on any salad purchased after 3pm, the eggs on the chef salad had gray spots. Despite all the yummy looking toppings on their salads, I can't get past my Mom, in her stirrup pants and big hair saying "God, these salads suck."
In short: McDonalds, I know where Subway is. I know where Souper Salad is. I know where the produce section of my local grocery store is. If I want a healthy lunch that won't make me wish I were dead the second I'm done eating it, I know where to go. You, as the first major fast-food chain in America, serve as a place of distraction. When I walk through the doors, see that expansive menu in front of me, I don't want to look at vegetables in their natural form. I want to see bits of "potato" cut with lasers frying in oil. I want to hear "do you want cheese on that Big Mac?" I don't want to hear "do you want your hamburger low-carb?" I want to forget good nutrition, forget Morgan Spurlock's guts on a New York City sidewalk and just enjoy my damn french fries without feeling like I should have had a yogurt instead.

...dammit, now I want fries.
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Yummy, delicious fries.

Friday, March 04, 2005

When you wish...

upon, dreams really can come true.
I just read an article on Tomato Nation, where my pretend friend and similarly sarcastic soulmate Sars (consonance! hooray!) complained about needing a Roomba to clean up after her cats. She directed people to her Amazon wish list and somebody actually bought her a Roomba! For real! She asked, and someone delivered.
Since I'm in the midst of some dire financial straits (for real this time, kids) I figured I'd assemble a wish-list of the crap I covet or need and I shall direct you good people in that direction. You can buy me a Suze Orman book about how to save money (yes, spending money on a book to tell you how not to spend money is ironic but the library won't have it for twelve years or so) or a Kitchen Aid mixer so the cookies I bake you in thanks will be light and fluffy. The item I most need on there is the iPod, as you may be aware.
If you can't afford an iPod, you can buy me the new Tori CD. You can buy me any number of small ticket items. And I thank you in advance for your time.

Amy's Wish List

(...y'all know I'm mostly kidding, right? Because I am. My grandma doesn't have the internet, so the odds of her buying an iPod for her graddaughter who hasn't called in a month are slim.)

I Heart Geeks

Dear computer geeks,

I love you. Seriously. Hallmark should make a genre of greeting cards just for you. They should smell like pizza, coffee and Red Bull, the fuels that keep you going. Words can barely express my gratitude to you for, again, saving my ass from certain technological doom.
As you know I spent my Tuesday night in the fetal position on my bed, staring at the blue screen that was once my beautiful laptop wallpaper and IMs and weeping. After text messaging people in a panic, after threatening to throw the computer (followed closely by myself) out the window, I decided to ask the tech guy at my office, Dan, to take a gander at my laptop and see what I did to it. Apparently, my hard drive (at three years old, an antique) is dying. Dan agreed, for the price of the part and a length of copper wire (which he assures me will be used for home brewing and the FBI will not be knocking down my door to "ask some questions") to install a new one. He gave me my ill laptop back after backing up the hard drive and told me to bring it back when the hard drive came in.
Thank you, computer people. Thank you. My jukebox/communication device is back in operating form for the time being. It glowed happily in Dan's office, surrounded by the carcasses of lesser computers. The media may give you a bad rap, but I love you all to pieces. And not just because you help me, but because you answer questions from people even less technologically inclined than me ("So there's this blue thing, and it's got an arrow and it's just being weird").
Now if only the geeks can do something to save my iPod, which is also having a slow and painful death...


Holy fucking shit! The apocalypse is nigh! Hoard now!
Seriously, y'all. I'm glad I did a road trip before this, or else Kristen and I would've been stranded in Bumblefuck, Maine until prices came back down. I don't have a car, but my plans to go home next weekend and hang with my Mom may be on hold, because I can't afford to put gas in whatever car I use.

Thursday, March 03, 2005

Thou shalt not put up monuments

High court to hear Ten Commandments cases

I am no legal scholar. In fact, I am no mathematician, religious scholar or CCD student. I own a Bible (the modern translation) and a book entitled "Don't Know Much About the Bible." Religion is fascinating to me, but I don't know much about it. Nor do I have an extensive knowledge of the Constitution, even after working on an American history book for nearly a year, or after taking three classes with the most excellent professor of history at Emerson, John Coffee. So I have some mixed emotions about religious statues being placed in areas of government business.
You can't argue that the laws of this country aren't based on Judeo-Christian beliefs. The Declaration of Independence throws around language such as "creator" and "God." The Founding Fathers were deeply religious men, so the laws in the Constitution reflect the influence of the Ten Commandments. It's not entirely irrational to put a statue of the Ten Commandments outside a courthouse since it relates to the laws being discussed inside. I could see if it was a statue of Jesus over the front door that it would be worthy of an uproar.
The main problem I have is the view that a lot of people in this country have that the Christian religions are the only thing going, and that they view the religious paraphanlia outside as an endorsement of their beliefs. A lot of people can't fathom that anyone would have beliefs other than their own. Maybe it's because Christmas evokes Santa and elves for me instead of Jesus and bales of hay, but I don't get it. I know religion gives people a lot of comfort and a sense of community and, you know, good for those people. But I don't think it takes a very high level of thinking to step outside yourself, put yourself in someone else's shoes and say, "Yeah, you know, putting that big honking religious monument outside a courthouse may not be the best idea. Maybe we can move it in front of the church?"
Of course, Justice Scalia made the most bone-headed comment in the article:

According to an AP-Ipsos poll, 76 percent of Americans support such displays, a fact that was not lost on some of the justices during arguments. "It's a profoundly religious message, but it's a profoundly religious message believed in by a vast majority of the American people," Scalia said.

As I understand it, the entire fucking purpose of the Supreme Court is to protect the rights of the minorities in this country. Most minorities are discriminated against-- hence why the Pilgrims came here (and for the money, but, eh), hence why the Supreme Court had to desegregate the schools, why the Supreme Court had to protect the right abortion. This issue isn't as clear cut as those, but Scalia's comment is pretty dumb. He basically argues that "well, all the cool kids are doing it, so Commandments of stone for everyone!"

Wednesday, March 02, 2005

Rotten Apple

I am a nerd. I admit it. I am not a geek, since geeks actually know what they're doing with computers. I enjoy computers-- ask anyone who ventures to the CambridgeSide Galleria AppleStore with me and must stand over my shoulder as I play with the computers, pimped out with every program I wish I could afford, then move to the iPods/speaker setups, grabbing everything, avoiding the glances from the employees for fear they'll ask me if I want anything and I'll scream "Yes! A Powerbook and 20GB iPod to go!" before I can help myself.
However, I've been having some problems with technology lately. My beloved iPod is near death. I have one of the old-school 5GB models whose batteries are notorious for a painful, drawn-out "I just charged this fucking thing so why isn't it playing the BEP for me" deaths. The headphone cord is fraying where it plugs in to the device. It is scratched from all the use it's had. If someone told me I could either save my iPod or a small child from demise, I'd have to give it some serious thought. The iPod gives me some auditory personal space on the T, it allows me to indulge my wildly moody musical whims ("I am sad. Tori Amos. I want something masculine and mean. Tom Waits") and, quite honestly, the iPod is the greatest man-made device since the flush toilet.
Last night, in an effort to extend the life of my iPod, I decided to wipe the files off the disk, then update the software on the iPod. I don't know why, and as soon as I clicked "wipe" I knew I had made myself some trouble. At first, it all went as it was supposed to. The iPod asked me to unplug it from the computer, then plug it back in. The songs started reloading. About 58 songs in, the iPod stopped loading the songs. It got stuck on "Goodbye Yellow Brick Road" and wouldn't continue. No biggie, I thought. Just reboot the computer.
I don't know what it is with Macs. I love them, but whenever I fuck them up, I fuck them up good. When I had my iMac back in 1999, I deleted the system folder. Then it took three people, all of whom were well-versed in computers, to figure out how to connect it to URI's ethernet (turns out we had the wrong cord). Now my iBook is loading the system software, but when it comes time for the desktop to appear I get a blue screen with a lonely black arrow, floating in a sea of nothing.
Since I just paid off the fucking computer about a year and a half ago, I was devastated that it appeared to be dead. I rebooted again. Blue screen. I swore at it. Blue screen. I pressed letters on the keyboard, hoping to appeal to it through some sort of telepathy. Blue screen. I went to my roommate's computer to IM the Whatever, the closest thing to a Mac geek I know. Annette's computer wasn't working either. Shrieking. Rebooted Annette's computer. That fucking worked. No Whatever. Swearing. Went back to the Mac. Blue screen. Dropped laptop from six inches off the surface of the desk. Blue screen flickers, but remains blue. Collapsed into heap on the bed, mortified I'll have to part with MORE money to get a new computer. Realize that iPod will not be operational for morning commute, the warranty on my iBook expired, and that I am woefully alone in the world. Cried and swore.
Thankfully, our tech guy at work is my hero, so he gave me some pointers and agreed to take a look at my home computer if it continues to be recalcitrant. Hopefully I can get everything working again or else I'm going to be reaquainting myself with the art of the mix tape. This was going to be a grievance with Apple for not releasing iPods in sizes I can use (it's like Goldilocks; the 6GB is too small, but the 20GB is too big, and there is NOTHING just right, especially in price) but morphed into my computer woes. As you were...