Saturday, December 31, 2011

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Meditation and All of It's Eventual Benefits

These days, I "meditate" for 15 minutes a day. I have not yet today, but I will.

I have been doing this for only 2 weeks -- so it has not yielded its amazing results yet.

So far it is just another task. Another way to pass my idle days of nothingness, coffee drinking, and "20 minute vitamin-D" walks. I am in Pennsylvania for 3 more days while I still have a "job" doing my shows at night. Then my grueling work of afternoon babysitting and stressing over the auditions I did not attend- will begin again in NYC.

The meditation results I am hoping for are: peace of mind, peaceful thoughts, physical beauty, happiness, amazing confidence, robotic indifference to my problems, physical beauty, glowing health, money, creativity, physical beauty, love, laughter, and physical beauty.

None of these have happened yet, but I have high hopes and even higher standards for my new and improved life.

It has become clear to me that all the noble and difficult things I do to try and improve my life are very selfish at their core, but I think that is true for many people. Or at least I tell myself to selfishly feel better.

These days I eat my buttery diet of psychotically and obsessively whole foods in order to attain brilliant health that everyone will be envious of one day.

I go for my daily walk in the sun to exercise a little bit, but not so much that I am annoyed, so I will be able to label myself as both lazy and healthy all at the same time.

I do a set of 15 girly push-ups once a week for the same reason.

I don't drink a lot of alcohol anymore because I want to feel amazing when I wake up.

I gave a donation to a few Christmas charities a few weeks ago (I hear that if you give your money- you become rich by the laws of karma. See? Selfish.) But I am ok with it, because otherwise I may never do anything for anyone else, and then where would I be?! I would have no friends!

Then again, why else would I eat well (minus the entire $5 dark chocolate bar I ate in my bed last night) and exercise moderately and not be an alcoholic? For someone else? For my parents to be proud of me? For my unborn children!? I don't know the answers to these questions, but again I am hoping that through meditation I will be able to answer all worldly and other-worldly quandaries.*

Coffee + Meditation

One last thing I have to say about meditation is that I know I will be very good at it one day. Because I make it VERY hard for myself to be in any state of peace by drinking a LOAD of coffee right before I meditate.

This seems counterintuitive- and- it is. But I assume it is also really flexing my relaxation muscles.

That is all for today, for I must go meditate. If I don't, my future amazingness is at stake.

*Actually, in a very roundabout way I guess I kind of do some of these self-improvement projects for my very hypothetical unborn children, because if my children are horrible, then that would be very annoying to me, especially if I am still in an unimproved, un-enlightened state.

Scary Underwater

When I was little and bored, I used to draw a simpler version of this picture below to freak myself out.

Mine was a little microscopic dude in a microscopic rowboat, with a mammoth whale-seamonster right below him.

ooooOoOooOOoooOooohhhh shiiiIiiiIIivvVvvveEeeerRszzss

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

What You Care About Most

As we have already established, I love self-help books. And one day my life is going to be so amazing you are going to wish you spent your early twenties reading self-help books too. But never mind, I'll let you know when that day comes.

In a chapter in The Joy Diet about how to find out your "true career", Martha Beck writes that all of her clients based in NYC found themselves doing what they truly cared about the night of September 11th, 2001. Sally flushed her drugs away, workaholic Jack spent time with his family, cyclist Jimbob pedaled towards the towers in order to help people etc.

She urges us to remember 9-11, or another time of tragedy, to see what we, ourselves, care about most....

My Dramatic Story

On the evening of September 11th, 2001, I was a mere 13 years old.

I was an '8th grader' at my private all-girl's school, so life was good because we were finally allowed to wear white polo shirts instead of yellow. Yessss.

I remember now that I was friends with people who stressed me out that year- because they really loved school dances, whereas I would have rather shot myself in the foot. But I didn't, because everybody seemed to like dances, so I decided I would hold my shot, and try for one more year to see what the hell people loved about them so much. Was it the rap music I didn't know any of the words to? Was it the huddle of boys from Haverford School that were standing on the opposite side of the gym? Was it the pain in my feet that would jump-start what looks like a lifetime of footache? I don't know. And I nevvverrrr willllllll. People must have been drinking. That makes things better. I, however, was NOT.

Also, I could not use my ballet skills on the dance floor.

But anyway, life was ok, because I hadn't been forced to go to a school dance yet, because after all, it was only the very beginning of September.

I had spent that summer trying one last ditch effort to be a normal person and take tennis at the golf club where my family belonged. It turns out after years of trying, I truly hated swim team, so I had finally let that one go. But! I tried Tennis Camp! Because my so-far lifelong crush would be attending as well, and he was really awesome at tennis. He was also very skilled at bouncing the tennis ball endlessly on his racket. (He was an amazing swimmer as well but I just couldn't keep up the swim team for him anymore.)

I had liked him for years. Years and years. Our parents were very good friends but I had probably spoken 4 words to him in my life. And one of them I specifically remember, when I used the word "syrup" to describe the smell of the fog machine at a Swim Team Mixer- but I pronounced it with the wrong emphasis on the syllable- and I have never forgiven myself. Plus, extra-curricularly, my ballet lessons were really pulling me from his sphere of golf-club coolness, so I had to give tennis a legitimate try.

P.S. This guy is now 100% gay. Closeted, yes. But I am 100% sure he is gay. Which explains a lot, and set up my future life experiences quite poetically.

Me and Ballet

You also should know, that 8th grade would be the year that I petitioned for an "Independent" sport: Ballet. Meaning, I got to sit in the library with the other 3 "Independent" equestrians, while my whole class did sports, and 'we did our homework' and they talked about horses.

I really thought I loved ballet. I went to ballet school with tough girls with enviable belly-button rings who had mothers who smoked (whattt!!!???). They were all amazing dancers, and really good at tap and hip hop. But I was only mildy decent at ballet even though I "loved it".

However, that 'love' would turn into dread in just a few months when I started wearing a specially bought 32-E sized bra from the same bra manufacture that Oprah used. (Le Mystere, in case you are curious). Ballllleeettttt bodddyyyyyyyy.

Back to September 11th.

As far as the tennis is concerned, that was the last summer that I spent my summer outdoors. The rest of my school life (and life-life) would feature summers rehearsing musicals in a school cafeteria for 8 hours a day developing a nice pasty glow. Previous summer muscles would begin atrophying- and my beauty began to really become "unique".

So, this was the last year that I returned to school in September with any sort of sun-tan.

There I was, bronzed and wearing a white polo on a Tuesday morning in September. We had an emergency assembly in the "Assembly Room". Our head of middle school told us a tragedy had occurred and two planes had hit buildings in New York. Etc. I had never heard of the twin towers before, so I was just confused. I was sure it was some sort of accident.

When I finally got home in the early afternoon- I watched the news with my family (my dad was not there because he supposed to be was traveling, by plane, for business. So for a while he may have been dead, but my mother got a call eventually that he was in fact alive, stuck in an airport). But, no matter what was going on, I could not ignore that the time for my 4:30 ballet class was creeping up...

My mom said I should call to see if there were classes. Could it be? Could they be cancelled? I faced my fear of speaking on the telephone for that one evening to call the dance school. Their answering machine told me that, due to the tragedy, there would be no dance classes that afternoon.

Self- Help Book Question: 

What is Your Biggest Memory from the evening of September 11th? What did you truly care about most amidst tragedy?

Answer: My biggest and near only memory from 9-11-01, was ELATION that I had no dance class.

What I truly cared about most, was sitting in my living room and eating Whole Foods Snickerdoodles.

Do I remember spending time with my family? Thinking about my passions? Caring for others?

No, if one's actions in the aftermath of tragedy point to one's true passions, mine are NO DANCE and snacks.

And to this day, honestly.... that is still pretty accurate.

Monday, December 26, 2011

Christmas: Cookies & Grandmothers

Fun Times For All:

mummy dearest


I made almond-flour ginger cookies. And they were delicious, however questionable looking.

My mother (who, to my knowledge, has never has baked a christmas cookie in her life) insisted from her comfortable kitchen window-seat throne- that I had to form some of them into "little men".

When I told her we didn't have any cookie cutters/rolling pins, she said that "organic shapes" were best.

Also, we have an old pot-belly stove-turned-oven with a numberless oven dial, so.... cooking times are not consistent:

They might look horrible to the naked eye, but they were good- and weirdly spicy.

Last night (christmas) my Irish-accented grandmother had muucch wine, and proceeded to tell me a story that I was "too young to hear, but achh, oh well": Once upon a time, when my grandmother had only 2 children yet, her mother in-law, my great-grandmother, told her that there was "such a thing as birth control now, you know".... the story went on and on- included the phrase "plowed away", and I nodded and pretended that this was all I wanted to hear from my Grandmother on Christmas.

Irish Grandmother

Also, my grandmother loves to point out my mother's "bum". Last night the three of us had a special conversation about how my grandmother has padded underwear to wear with certain "slacks" that give her more shape. My grandmother tried to get my mother to borrow the padded underwear to fill her out when my mom was undergoing chemo. She told me I didn't need any padded underwear.

Also, she claims that someone told her it is very normal to wear padded underwear in California.... I told her she should get implants.


My other Grandmother thinks that I should be lying about my age already. For I am too old at 23-almost-24! Obviously!

On Christmas Eve, she tried to tell my Aunt that I was a year younger than I am- and when I told my aunt the truth- my grandmother scolded me: "Don't tell them THAT!!"

For what purpose am I trying to trick my Aunt?

However, she wants to take me to a very, very fancy dinner tomorrow night at The Four Seasons Hotel in Philadelphia.

Maybe she thinks I deserve a little joy before I die of old age.

Besides beautiful cash, this grandmother gave me a very heavy Bill O'Reilly pen that has "PATRIOT" printed on it.

That's all the Christmas I care to write about now.

Merry Merry.

Friday, December 16, 2011

Spiritual Spanx

I love Self Help Books.

Mostly Spiritual Self Help Books. Because want to be a Zen Master.

I like books about living in the moment and positive thinking, and sometimes the ones about ruling the world from your couch. Actually I never bought that one specifically, but this reminds me that I should.

I love them. And I believe in them. However, the times (hours, days, months) that I am not reading them- I forget all about implementing them and their "life enhancing" advice.

And, also...  this blog is absolutely the OPPOSITE of everything I learn in them. Complain-y. Orrrrrrr maybe not. Maybe I am actually tapping into my true nature and being honest and liberating myself. Its hard to say. But it is definitely not focused on the Zen side of my being.

So anyway- 4 days ago I started a new "15 minutes a day meditation" regime, where you essentially sit there and watch your brain explode with a million thoughts. You just watch your brain go mad and you sit there knowing you are not the brain going mad. And then you are peaceful. Get it? Of course you don't.

But, as I "meditated" upstairs just now, I was also supposed to focus on the feelings in my body and  notice and label them without judging them. Ommmmmm.

For instance: "I am angry. And it is like there is a glowing fire the size of a tennis ball swirling in my shoulder. It is orange and red and yellow" Etc.

So anyway, today I felt anxiety in the form of constricted breathing. I felt like I couldn't take in a full breath and that I was going to run out of air. As I started to panic that I was going to suffocate I remembered to just.... label it.... and feel the fear of suffocating to death... and simply describe it to myself. (all while fully feeling the fear of suffocating to death, which, by the way, is totally irrational. Why would I suffocate to death sitting on my bed?)

The perfect description came to me: It felt like I had spanx on my lungs. There was a pair of too-tight spanx on my lungs- and every breath was constricted. And since I was devoted to 15 minutes of sitting with no distractions- there is nothing to focus on but my imminent suffocation/the vague anxiety that is causing it.

The spanx were also sewn to my shoulders and my lower back so every time I breathed it would pull my body in towards my spandex lungs.

After I sat there with SpanxLungs for about 5 minutes, and allowed myself to feel the anxiety of suffocating to death, then the spanx stopped being too tight. So now....maybe my lungs are just wearing regular-old-underwear. Which is fine.

I hope you are enlightened by this story.

Monday, December 12, 2011

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Pants and Heels

I like wearing flats. 

Flat boots, flat flats, Little sneaky sneakers, Clogs- whatever.

Sometimes, on the rare occasion when I truly won't have to walk or stand, I will wear high heels with a skirt. For instance, to a family holiday party where my parents will drive me there, I can couch-it the whole time, and only get up to wobble around awkwardly a few times- to get a shrimp or pour myself more wine. 

The nights I have worn high heels out in the city, starting in a cab and tricking myself into thinking "I won't have to walk" never works, and they have been some of the worst nights of my life. Regret and pain and wobbling. And walking. ALWAYS WALKING. I don't understand women in tv shows and movies- or just plain famous people - or even real people wearing heels. How?

So, I'm already wearing mostly only flats, sometimes heals with skirts to make my grandmothers impressed with me on Christmas and Easter and some family member's holy sacraments.

Ok, let me get on with my point.

The original point of beginning to write this post was: When I wear pants + high heels, which is quite rare, I feel like a bonafide idiot. I literally feel like my brain gets stupider and my body gets awkwarder. And that my legs take on a ghastly strange shape and that the bottom of my pants disappear and that my head is going to touch the ceiling. And when I walk I look like a bird with bendy backward knees and a jangly stride.

Whenever I wear this hellish combination, it is because I trick myself into thinking that it will make my legs look long and graceful- or whatever they say in magazines.

Every time I wear high heels and pants I remind myself NEVER TO DO THIS AGAIN. 

It is quite possible that I am insane and that I look like every other person who wears high heels and pants... whom actually, by the way, look stupid too. Really they do, and so do you. 

you know exactly what I mean

The reason I feel so strongly about how terrible I feel in heels/pants, is because I am actually currently wearing high-heeled clog boots (so .... they aren't even real high heels) and purple corduroy flare pants (which is a whole other issue) and I feel like a pelican. And, even after feeling horrible in them, I am still wearing them now only to inspire myself to write this. This morning I thought I would be able to pull off the "flare and clog" thing going on this Winter 2011/12 - but I should have known better.

Also, earlier today, someone affectionately patted me on the arm and I fell over sideways.

There is no moral to this story.

Tis the Season

A Muppet Christmas Carol.

I didn't see this movie until I was in college. And it is my favorite childhood Christmas movie.

Nothing more to say.

I don't feel like complaining today. I fear its because of a spiritual self help book that has made me peaceful. If this lasts my writing is really going to suffer.


Saturday, December 10, 2011

Friday, December 9, 2011

Childhood Christmas Memories

It becomes more and more clear to me that I have a terrible long-term memory. Or maybe its just a highly selective memory. You tell me.

When asked to conjure up memories of childhood Christmases, as we are asked to do for the show I am currently in, everyone else in my cast seems to remember very specific happy, fun, exciting memories- yet I am scouring my brain for any sort of Christmas memory at all, and forget the good ones! I only remember the bad memories and the times gone wrong.

This is apparently the most of what I remember from childhood Christmases :

  • An awkward, scary christmas party of a family friend with mostly all adults- and a select few kids I did not know and never got to know. Santa was there, but I stayed away. There was also an indoor pool that was eerily lit. However, they had that cool mini moving display of those magic, magnetic moving wintery skaters which mesmerized me and my brother. The only consolation for the awkwardness of the party was the baked goods the random elderly would feed us as they patted our heads like a full-on cartoon. Can this memory be real? I don't know.
  • Speaking of, I liked putting cookies out for Santa. I thought it was unbelievable that he would actually have the time to eat them- but still leave a bite, always. Why? One year we didn't have any cookies to put out for him, and I was very distressed. My parents were not concerned and said he could eat some of the carrots we put out for the reindeer- but I knew he would not be happy about that.
  • I seem to remember every electronic gift I got that immediately was a lemon, or needed batteries we did not have. 
  • I remember the year we went on a scavenger hunt through the house to find a crate with dog supplies! We were getting a golden retriever! And then my mom gave it away. Two years later one of my xmas gifts was a stuffed golden retriever attached to a mini, faux dog bed. And, I was 14. Why? Why?
  • To break up this spoiled complaining a bit: we always had lovely, warm and jolly get togethers on Christmas Eve and Christmas Night with my two respective sides of the family. And, yes, They are always great. But my memory is so bad that its all just a nice blur. Except I remember one year my dad gave me the pizza t -shirt he won in the adult "White Elephant". I also normally have to sing something awkwardly. Also, my cousin often also plays the trumpet for us all. He is now 16, so lets see if he does it this year. 

some more merrymaking.

  • One year my mother bought an electronic "Bird Calls" book with a speaker for the White Elephant. That was funny actually.
  • Normally there is some "hilarious" throw down between two adults in the white elephant on my dad's side, often involving Giants vs. Eagles paraphernalia. And at the White Elephant on my mom's side there were always some strange, comical gifts in the mix (Bird Calls). But, can barely tell you one specific story or example. BECAUSE I HAVE A TERRIBLE MEMORY, and details evade me.
look my dad got a gift certificate!
my uncle won ONION GOGGLES! Stylish AND utilitarian!
the first year my cousin Sean entered the  "adult polyanna" (White Elephant) he got stuck with my mother's decorative, birdhouse pitchfork.
  • When I was a teenager, there was a big blue couch pillow in with all of my Christmas presents. This represented the couches that were going to go in the basement. Which, I am sure my mother would have bought regardless of me or of Christmas. Thank YOU!
  • ONE year, when I was ... 4 or so.... Santa wrote me a note and said that I was not old enough for the sort of baby doll that talks and pees and stuff and I was SO UPSET.
  • Back when I went to Catholic School for 2 years (pre-k and Kindergarten), in the Kindergarten nativity play, I was the Narrator of the whole show, who was the only one who spoke. It was apparently an honor, but I was sad because I wasn't Mary. And obviously, Mary is the star.
  • One year we got a ping pong table in the basement, and my brother and sister and I didn't even notice it for hours, even though we were sitting right next to it looking at our other presents. That was actually pretty cool.
  • When I was ten, I cried to my mom when she wouldn't tell me for SURE if Santa wasn't real or not. She kept on saying "What do YOOUUUUUU think?" in this fake way. She was trying to tell me he was not real without saying the words. She got mad because I was too naive to understand and accept what she was trying to tell me.
  • My brother and I would have sleepovers on Christmas eve and sing happy birthday to Jesus in the morning on the years we remembered because it "made us feel less guilty and selfish". One year my brother was sleeping in my trundle bed, and farted too many times. As he was laughing maniacally I told him to GET OUT. He begged to stay in and I said the only way he could sleep in my room was if he slept on my desk naked, hoping he would choose to just return to his room. But, no, he slept on my desk naked.
Those are all the memories I have- I have some blurry memories from school, but most involve being sad that I didn't own any tights that were striped like candy canes like my friend "Gundy". And wishing that my bright red shirt fit me better. Probably also feeling ill from cookies.

Merry Christmas Season! May my memory improve only as well as my memories improve.

Monday, December 5, 2011

Gossip Ain't Cheap and Alcoholic Cucumbers

The problem with having this popular blog linked to my naaammmeee, is that annnyonnne could potentially find it. And if I have written (negatively)(or just teasingly) about anyone at all, (for SPORT of course), they would potentially be able to find it and know what I have done. Even if I changed their name and used all sorts of euphemisms, it would be easy to guess.

So... alas.... I am left to make fun of myself, my mother.... and..... random people like postal workers, etc.

I can also only write about very neutral, acceptable robot-like goings on, like a sort of loveless robot. Which is fine, I guess. Except that this is MY BLOOGGGGG. AND I CAN'T EVEN WRITE IN IT. The only reason I linked it to my name in the first place is because I was sick of signing in and out of google accounts for anonymity.

In case you are excited for a juicy story about how I hate my boss and killed my lover, this confession does not accompany an actual story.

Also, on the flip side, my attempts at writing about happiness, joy, and the beauty-of-the-world always fall short because a) it is not my talent and b) it makes me want to hurl. So, I'll keep happy stuff to my personal diary that does not exist.

That being said, let's go for some cheap thrills! Have Want Need! Because it is Christmastime again! The time for making a list of things you want your parents to get you even though you are technically a grown woman who should be considering "giving back". And don't worry, I am considering it.

What do I HAVE!?

a dose of ye olde holiday cheer

What do I WANT?!

to learn how to make froth-art

What do I NEED?!

to be a cat. 
all sleeping, stretching, and walking around asking for tuna


Unrelatedly: Let me leave you with this quote:

Once you have turned into a pickle you can never be a cucumber again.

I read the quote and loved it. However, when searching for where it originated, I learned it is supposed to mean something like: "Once you are addicted to drugs, you will never be a fresh cucumber again, even if you get sober, sorry". Something like that.

Saturday, November 26, 2011

No Friggin' Angels

My mom is flying around the kitchen scowling at me and my Dad because we now have her hooked on Keurig coffee, and are joking that she now needs it in order to be pleasant in the morning, just like us.

The kitchen is littered with Christmas decorations taken out of the boxes- but not put up in their proper place yet.

She is tensely looking for a mushroom soup recipe in one of her new cookbooks. But all of her cookbooks are hidden under miscellaneous Christmas decor. She angrily whips a gold mesh angel off of one of the books.

Trying to lighten the mood, I say for her "Aghh! There are too many friggin' angels in this kitchen!". (Thinking that "Friggin" was the most appropriate exclamation for her.)

But, this is apparently the last straw, for I have slighted the Lord and his winged helpers.

'Don't say "friggin" and "angels" in the same sentence.'


Thursday, November 24, 2011

The Thanksgiving Label

I made this. It is Grain-Free. And burnt

Let me call to my own attention- that I have a blog "Label" for Thanksgiving.

And how pointless.

Thus far I have only 2 posts under 'Thanksgiving'. This will be the 3rd. How many times a year can I write about Thanksgiving?

I think in the coming posts I will continue to focus on the futility of many and all aspects of this blog. And yet, in the midst of the futility I will continue to write anyway, because sometimes the only point of this pointless blog, is to have a good ol' activity for myself, and to give people sometimes stupid to read.

Why Do I Have a Thanksgiving Label?

Well. There was a time a few years ago in college, when I had a visionary dream during a nap that I should start an "Autumn Website". Whatever the hell that is. I dreamed the site would be a place for all the people who love The Fall to convene online and discuss. And also to buy fall goods like scarecrows and .... rakes, I guess. There would be beautiful pictures and recipes for pumpkin spice foods and an activity list.

Upon waking I actually told my roommates about this BRILLIANT idea- but later in the day I realized it was one of those things that only works in the dream-world.

So, maybe this Thanksgiving Label is an extension of that dream. A little homage to the piece of me that wanted to have a blog totally dedicated the The Autumn, and to make my fortune selling rakes.

I also think having the label of "Thanksgiving" was me hoping that my blog would one day become some sort of cushy, aesthetically pleasing, inspiring and visual blog about happy, pretty, frivolous things. Instead of becoming a sort of questionable collection of mildly depressing essays about a girl who doesn't have enough clothes to wear a new outfit each day of the week.


Here is my mother discussing bone marrow:

Oh, and I almost forgot: I am Thankful for almost everything except for my Bad Night's Sleep.

I am also specifically thankful for the internet, even though it may be ruining our lives collectively.

Monday, November 14, 2011

Search Keywords for My Blog

Well this is timely, because I just changed my Blog name, like a dope. Now none of my 4 adoring fans in Malaysia will be able to find me.

I know you must be curious. "How does NonQuickOatmeal get so many comments hits? She has like 53 hits a DAY. That's 50 random people, who were looking for some quality information or inspiring reading material- who were shuttled here by Google, only to find out that I am completely useless. I can't offer them quality information, inspiration or photography.

Nevertheless....Let's go through the secrets to me getting .... a few hits from my varied audience of non-commenting, disappointed "readers".

1. Sister Pool

What kind of a dumb search was that? Yes it was the one with the sister and the pool and the peaches.

2. Italian cookie tray

They unfortunately found no helpful info here. I don't even know what or why I wrote about italian cookies.

3. Nonquickoatmeal.

Well now I have gone and changed the name and confused those 2 people.

4. A mom who doesn't like dogs

Yep, my mom gave away two dogs, one year after another. Whomever was searching might be comforted by learning that someone else's mother is as cruel as their own mother. I'm glad I can do some good.

5. aroma expresso bar oatmeal

Aw. The old 'Search Words + Blog Title' conundrum. That must've been annoying to find out: "I wanted to know if the hot oatmeal from Aroma was delicious or not! What IS this BLOG!?". However, they don't know that espresso is not spelled "expresso". Dumb.

6. basic non-quick oatmeal

wait.... calling regular (not instant) oatmeal "non-quick" was supposed to be a semi... joke. Apparently it's a legit description! I would urge them to fold chocolate chips into their "basic non-quick oatmeal". Ugh. I'll never forget those days.

7. Black Eye Family Photo

Bingo! This search result actually might have been helpful to them. They were probably wondering what to do for a family photo if they happen to have badly timed black eye. And I am here to inspire them to get EVERYONE in the family to put black-eye-makeup on. You are welcome, sir.

8 and 9. Droopy Eyed Armless Children

Thank you Charlie Sheen.

10. How to not blank during Improv

No help here.

Impending Holidays and Partying Dishwashers

I am in PA, living with my parents, to do a show for the Holidays- Singing and Swinging and exploring holiday loneliness. As far as I know that is the premise of the show. But really, come see it! (plug! plug!)

Also here is a picture of a promotional card they sent to my parent's home, addressed to me, to remind me that I will be in the show:

That is me on the left. My phone is somewhat intelligent, and when I took a picture of the card with my phone, it put little squares around all the faces but mine.


Also, the dishwasher in my family's home is very strange:

I did the dishes the first day I was home, because my parents fear my presence. A LOT OF DISHES ARE USED WHEN I AM AROUND.

Friday, September 23, 2011

Serious Floodwatch

Not only is it torrentially raining in NYC with a flood watch - but there is an extra gushing waterfall on my street  today.

While I was on the phone, I kept forgetting the word for fire hydrant- which was a problem.

The fire department was offended "We don't control the fire hydrants, that is for the EPA".

Well, Fire Department, you get cats out of trees, so excuse me for being confused.

And, yes, that would be the first two times I called 911 taking place in the span of one week.

The water pressure here is so low that I cannot flush my toilet, which hosts it's own special problems.

But, I am happy to report that one of the two carpenter bees has already been swept away off my ledge by the rain.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

How to Wish You Were Frugal with Food

After unsuccessfully trying to cut down my eating/food budget I have realized drastic measures have to be taken.

Now, understand this is mainly for the purpose of having money to buy some clothes. Some Key pieces for the Fall.... like.... red pants, seventies blouses and ... some clothes that aren't blue.

I have healthy, expensive, and bizarre tastes. So, there is only so much I am willing to do. Will I be switching to Ramen and Skippy and store-brand macncheese? No.

What I AM willing to do:

1. Eat Out Never a lot Less :( But only until I buy my leopard print flats and cable knit sweater and other important wardrobe additions.

2. Cut down on Kombucha.... like... A lot.

3. Eat Other People's Food.

4. More Eggs.

5. Soak and Cook Beans. no more cans :-/

6. Trader Joe's

7. No more late night corner-deli purchases. Those tricksters have high prices.

8. Eggs and Toast. Eggs and Toast. Eggs and Toast and Salt.

9. Drink Less Coffee (I already started. It is sad but helpful- on many levels)

10. Eat other people's food some more. Obviously only if they offer it, but when they do... take them up on it and then some. Unless of course it is normal, processed food from a normal, processed supermarket, in which case: maybe don't.

11. Quinoa!

12. Should I start making my own yogurt? What's the POINT? SHOULD I START MILKING MY OWN COW?

13. onions? bananas? potatoes?

14. Don't worry I WILL eat some vegetables.

15. Is $100 a week a lot for people? A little? Because it is a serious STRUGGLE for me.

16. Sorry for all the CAPS LOCK. But I am having a VERY ROUGH TIME.

17. No Cardio. I'm not kidding. I already walk enough. NO CARDIO. I need to be less hungry. Because I am starving EVERY DAY OF MY LIFE.

18. should I buy my own goat?

19. Buy the cheapest Almond Butter Possible

20. I don't know.

21. If I went on one dinner date a night, then ... maybe people would pay for my dinners. Sometimes that doesn't work out though, because its 2011. And people try to be equal.

22. Start to Wedding Crash.

23. Go on a Fast. That would work, but it would depress me.

24. Obviously eat "seasonally" and "locally". Which I believe in 100%, but since I have a fear of the farmer's market employees, no matter what I buy seasonally, it is mostly from California and Mexico anyway.

We'll See....

I have been eating other people's/my freezer for a week and a half and .... I get to go to Trader Joe's tomorrow. yessssssss.

Over and Out.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

On God and Bad Prayers

There are a many beliefs about spirituality I have read. I am half-assedly subscribed to the following:

1. The Universe is "God"/Life/Love- and it listens and takes care of you- (but has no beard)

2. We can create whatever we want- we need to visualize it- and it will happen- (like a genie but with no beard)

3. We must accept what is- and let life unfold around us- we cannot possibly know what we want or what we need (conflicts with #2) (also, no beard)

4. I can pray to God, with or without a beard, for things and resolutions, remembering that "he" is not necessarily a man, but we only say that so we can further understand "him". I think.

5. You say "Thy Will Be Done". Meaning: "Oh, God, I really really want this, but of course- whatever you want should be what happens because otherwise I am getting too smug."

6. You say "Thank You" at the end of your request in order to tell the Universe: "This is happening, bitch, I already thanked you, now GET ON IT".

7. You say the request as if it already is that way. For instance, instead of "I really want to be a millionaire God. Please. Pleeaassseeeee". You say " I am a Millionaire. Thank You."

-Which is WEIRD and they all totally contradict each other-

8. We are ALL connected. Literally. Like if half our brain gets damaged, and we just saw with one side (forget which side) we are literally just like energy connected and concentrated. Which makes ANYTHING POSSIBLE. And is also confusing. (Saw this on a TED talk)

9. Jesus is literally sitting in heaven. Like his whole self. Him. His body. His robes are IN HEAVEN. And when you die you will SEE HIM. I actually... do not believe this. I believe that St. Anthony himself is searching for my keys before I believe that. No offense Jesus. I like the things you said, I really do.

10. Speaking of Jesus. I have read, and I like the idea, that people greatly misunderstood and misinterpreted his words, and really he was just saying. "I am "God", like you, we are powerful and connected. etc". "What I do, you will do too". He was talking about connectedness. But was just a peaceful rebel. (He DID have a beard, however. but apparently it wasn't long or blonde.)

11. I like to pray to Saints and ask them to do things for me. Then I thank them, because I am bossing them around. If, that day, I believe in the Universe instead of "God" (beard or no)- I just consider the Saints, like.... energy balls- or something.

All That Being Said- I Pray about One Day a Month

The rest of the days I am just sitting at my computer stressing out.

On that One Day a Month- I try to do something like this:

I try to meditate. I lie in bed and either fall asleep or start thinking about what clothes I should bring to the laundromat. Then I yell at myself in my head.

Sometimes I make a list of all the things I want and draw little crosses at the top of the page and little "thank yous" at the bottom. Then I get stressed about how I don't have anything on that list.

Sometimes I lie in bed and say a mantra, like: "All is well. I can trust the process of life. All is well. I can trust the process of life. All of the dishes are dirty why am I lying down. I am going to be a sexy chicken for Halloween, that would be funny." And on and on.

Normally though, on that one day a month, what I do is get in bed at NIGHT and say- "OH, I know a great way to not think about how long it takes me to fall asleep. I'll pray and ask for all the many things I want." Then I lie there and say in my head:

"Hi God. I don't know if you are a God or a Universe or whatever. But I don't think you fault me, and I am going to tell you what I want. I really want to.... have the things that I want. I really want to- " and then my brain stops. "Ok, ok. I really want... to be happy. I want a career, if that is what I am supposed to have. So I hope that you like, inspire me to do things, and that I do them. Also, just bring me things. Like money. And Food." And then my brain stops. "I want....ummmm... what was I thinking? Ah yes. ahhhhhh" and then I sigh like a maniac. trying to be zen. then I start speaking like an old english poet "Dear, God. I am thankful for alllll the blessings in my life. This bed. This apartment. I trust you and allll your funny little happenings. I pray for happiness for my-" And then my brain stops. Then I start thinking about how late it is. Or the email that I forgot to write. Then I have a blog post idea, but I am too tired to write it down. Then I say "God, I want to not be afraid of dating anymore! AND I WANT to be very productive and very happy. And what is that sound in my air conditioner?".

It is very hard to be as spiritual as I am.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

How to Stop Procrastinating and Start Unpacking Your Suitcase

Say goodbye to guilt-filled days, staring at an unpacked suitcase!

Now there is a perfect way to make sure you unpack!

Drop Frozen Blueberries Among Your Clothes

They melt quickly into permanent purple stains! 
Unpack Quickly and Efficiently!

If you can't force yourself to do this intentionally, do what I did and accidentally put the suitcase open in the kitchen right under where you prepare food. Next open up a bag of frozen blueberries and dump them clumsily into a bowl. When one or more fall into your bag, you will be forced to unpack, so as to avoid having to buy all new clothes I cannot afford.

Frozen Raspberries are also acceptable. But the mighty blueberry is smaller, rounder, and will hide in a tiny crevice- so it will force you to take ALL your clothes out.

Do not do this with something like mustard, red sauce, coffee, red wine etc. unless you do it with FROZEN mustard, frozen red sauce, frozen coffee (iced won't work) or frozen red wine. It is important that the blueberry be a ticking time bomb. This will inspire you to save your clothes, instead of depress and overwhelm you. If I spilled mustard on my open bag of clothes, I would lie down on the kitchen floor next to it and give up.

Waste no time! This offer may not last, so Drop Frozen Blueberries Among Your Clothes TODAY- and live guilt free!

Idea does not cover what to do with unfolded clothes after removal from Blueberried Bag. Idea does not assume any responsibility for stained clothes, ruined clothes, or unfolded clothes. If problem persists for 1 week or longer, more drastic measure may be needed.

Blind Cleaning

When I moved into my apartment, my mom kept on saying "YOU MUST CLEAN YOUR BLINDS!".

It didn't seem all that important to me + I had mono. 

And I tried. But it was too hard. And they never seemed to get clean. Because I was tired.

BUT YESTERDAY!!!! I found the desire to try again. And I did it with a microfiber rag! And yes it was tedious, but no it was not hard.

Applaud me!

Mid-way through:

Friday, September 2, 2011

Monkey Boxers

So.... maybe about 7... maybe 8 years ago I bought 3 pairs of brightly colored boxers from men's gap. To sleep in.

I think it was before there were any viable women's boxers- but I could be wrong. I was in a phase of high school where I didn't care for finer things- only questionable menswear.

(This would also have been the year that I wore pig tail buns, and long shirts under short shirts and chucks (before they were really in again). Also, I think cargo pants were in.

But no matter. I actually found two of those boxers recently and have been wearing them again in the hot summer months. One is pretty pink and coral and blue stripes and I left it down at the shore accidentally, so I have been forced to wear the other one, which is bright orange with little monkeys all over them. (I also had a monkey phase).

No matter! Who cares! Its cool! Be Yourself!

Yesterday I took my clothes to get washed. I have no laundry in the building, so I treat myself to the "Chinese Laundry" on the block over (the official establishment's name).

The women in there are nice to me and know which vera bradley bag-filled-with-laundry is mine when I come to get it.

They laugh at me when I bring only 6 lbs of laundry when the minimum is 8 lbs and 8 dollars.

"So Small!", They laugh with at me.

But they are nice. Once, when I was really sick with mono one of them told me I was beautiful and asked if I lived upstairs. I didn't know if the two were connected, and should have been worried if they were, but I was thankful anyway. And I said.... "No. I live... not upstairs".

So it was the first time I had seen the ladies in a little while (btw, the man who sometimes works there, is not as nice) and they smiled at my 7 lb bag of laundry. I filled it with towels and even... rags just to make it not 4 lbs. But I needed to do laundry.

When I went to pick it up yesterday- the one woman seemed very frazzled. She kept saying something that sounded like "udapat" and was trying to pull out the trash bag filled with clothes within a vera bradley bag in order to show me something. It seemed very urgent.

She kept saying "udapat" and finally pointed to.... the folded orange and monkey-covered boxers.

"These your udapat?"


I then blurted something like : "Yes. HA! Oh, yes that WOULD be confusing. Yes. Yes. HAHAHAHhahahahahahahhaa. I just found them in the back of my closet! Weird! Hahaha. They are mine."

Now, first of all, this means that all my fears about those women judging my laundry are TRUE.

Secondly, why? Why would she call it to my attention that I had funny, monkey-covered men's boxers?

What IF, and yes this is unlikely, what if they were my BOYfriend's monkey boxers? Huh? And I just so happened to put them in with my laundry.

Or, what if, even worse, they were mine (which they ARE), why are you making me feel bad!?!??

Now I have, in the past, gotten baby clothes and weird socks (with human faces printed onto them back) in my laundry- so maybe she just wanted to make sure she wasn't giving away someone else's clothes.


STILL, WOMAN. Allow me some monkey-boxer privacy.

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Mold or Bleach? Mold or Bleach?

Which is worse for me to be inhaling? Mold or Bleach? Which is worse to be spreading all over my skin and spraying into my eyes from the scrub brush? Mold or Bleach?

It doesn't matter, I guess, because I have just had a steady supply of both to my respiratory system/skin organ.

My hands feel crackly and my throat feels angry.

And there is still ominous gray occupying my grout.

In Other News:

I am only in NYC for 3 days- before I go away for Labor Day Weekend- and I have no money and I have no food. All my expenses are going towards Bleach. and Kombucha. And bus tickets and  wedding presents.

See you on the other side.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Mom is a Bug on Facebook

I cut out all of my lines, because the story I was telling was boring. It is all about the bug anyway.

Actually, without my lines it looks pretty hilarious.

The Ghost of Hurricane Irene

Moldy Mold!

I came back to New York to find black mold growing by the drain of my shower because of a dripping spigot (yes, that is how you spell it).

I remembered a friend who told me she had to move out of her apartment due to "dangerous, toxic black mold in the bathroom". I poured an entire bottle of bleach on it.

Google is no friend because, now, I am going to die from the mold.

And its not enough that I terminate it with bleach, it is apparently flying around my air, getting onto all my other surfaces and causing me internal damage.

It is worse than bed bugs.

I have an old, very leaky bathroom. There is black and orange stuff puffing out from under my sink. I always just thought it was mineral build-up. But now I am going to die.

I literally prayed to God last night to miraculously kill the mold. I was that overwhelmed- that I thought the only way to effectively handle the situation at 2 am last night was to pray for a miracle. Also, I know I will have to clean and/or get the Superintendent involved.

I would put a picture, but I don't want to get close to it. Even though I still have to every time I go to the bathroom.

Errand List:

  • Hardware Store: Bleach, Gloves, Scrubs, More Bleach, Vinegar (for the days I feel like cleaning "Green") and a mask.
  • Air Purifier.
  • New Pillows. (unrelated.) My pillows are very uncomfortable.

And that will be about all the money I have!


2. Protect yourself by using goggles, gloves, and breathing protection while working in the area. For large consolidated areas of mold growth, you should use an OSHA (Occupational Safety & Health Administration) approved particle mask.


Friday, August 26, 2011

Classical Voice Lessons

In Middle School and High School I took classical voice lessons from a belarusian, voice teacher (pianist extraordinaire). (if she reads this I want it to be flattering of her, because I loved her so much).

I just did not love classical voice.

Why did I take classical voice? It is the same reason a hip hop dancer takes ballet (do they?). Or why a basketball player cross trains.

If these examples make you think I am a Hip Hop singer- wrong again.

But nevertheless- my voice lessons took place in a big Victorian house that had been converted into a russian Music teacher School for kids who wanted to be stressed out.

Our specific voice lessons often took place in the attic room, late at night, when no one was around. I think it had to do with my insane after school schedule. But why it had to be in the attic, I fail to remember.

But, because of the remoteness and the late hour, there was a time that I thought she was a ghost/angel sent to teach me to sing and that I was the only one who saw her. But then I got confused as to who we paid and how my mom knew about her. Also, why she was there, and why the head of the music school let me be there if I was singing alone in a room with a magical piano.

Eventually one of the other teachers came in a talked to her during our 11 pm voice lesson- and I realized she was just a human.

But, save for that one month where I thought she was an angel/ghost, I did everything I could to make sure that I sang as LITTLE AS POSSIBLE in my lessons.

This was my ultimate education in procrastination.

I would stall as long as possible, sit down on the couch (when we were in the living room room on the first floor), chat about life, ask her about her life and how her green card process was going, etc.. She was getting her doctorate in music from Temple in Philadelphia- and she would update me on the progress of her dissertation.

She would tell me about her current gym regimen and I would encourage the talk. She would tell me about her new boyfriend that she met on the internet who lived in Virginia (I think she lives there now) who she would visit every other weekend.

She would tell me about her hobby of collecting beautiful computer backgrounds. She had a file on her computer with hundreds, maybe thousands of picturesque landscapes to set as backgrounds for her computer.

She would tell me about her baby (her car) and her son. And her cat named Charlie. I just remembered about her cat!

She would tell me she would go 90 mph on the highway when her "friends" weren't around. (The cops.)

She also started really getting into playing Pool when I was a junior and senior in high school.

I am sure I told her about a lot of things too, since I was the one instigating the procrastination, but I can't remember my big talking subjects, only hers.

When I did actually sing, we would warm up, and it was hard.

Then if we were learning a song, she would teach me the words to the foreign classical song- often russian. I would phonetically write the words out on a piece of paper (the only time I was actually supposed to be on the couch), memorize them, and sing songs with words I had no idea the meaning of. I would also accidentally copy her accent exactly- so when I sang an english song (the few classical ones there are), I had a russian accent. It was weird. (of me.)

I wasn't very good at classical singing, I always sounded very young. Not opera-like at all. I attribute that to a lack of passion, practice and ... desire. But I learned a lot from Irina.

I also think it may have helped me in singing to this day, but who can say...

I would put up a track of me singing an English song in a Russian accent if I was on my mom's computer, God I should find that....

All this talk makes we want to contact Irina. Maybe I will send her this post!

Sunday, August 21, 2011

A Surfer's Extreme

A Surfers Extreme from Richard Edgar Woolbert IV on Vimeo.

I want to share the film my brother made with his friend this past week. 

He has had bleached-blonde, long hair for the past 6 months in mental preparation for his (self-created) role.

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Mac Stores, Black Eyes and Family Photos

I spilled coffee on my computer a week ago because my hands are very weak in the morning.

I turned it off and upside down for a whole day, but it just wasn't working anymore.

Atlantic City

shit show

Atlantic City has the closest Apple Store to Ocean City, so I made an appointment the other day and dragged my little sister Margaret along. She has a black eye.

Little did I know it was the 'Air Show' in Atlantic City the day of my appointment. Too Loud- we thought there were bombs going off. And too chaotic and crowded: Car Park Hell.


Anyways, my computer was busted- yet something inspired me to be honest with the Sir working the Genius Bar. I had had too much coffee that day already (ironically) and was majorly stressed from being an hour late to my appointment because we had to go up and down and up again in a packed 12-story car park- and I knocked this wobbly poll on my way into the spot we found. (And there were a lot of signs for stripper clubs in Atlantic City).

So basically I seemed very upset while talking about my computer.

Turns out I needed $714 worth of repair that Apple Care doesn't normally cover, but I got it for free. I don't know why. I almost asked but thought that Sir would rescind the kindness if I questioned it.

12 days left in my 2 year warranty.

Family Photo

"How To Make A Girl with a Black Eye Feel Less Horrible (in an Overly-Sunny Picture)"

Thursday, August 11, 2011

When it rains face-plants, it pours face-plants.

I don't know if I am using the correct terminology "face-plant", and I mostly don't care.

My meaning: to slam one's face into something- hard.

Not shrubbery on one's face. Though I could write a whole book about that one, too.

Where are you, Carmen?

I am currently at the (jersey) shore, rehearsing Annie (the musical), in a NEW shore home that is about 5 X bigger than the one we just moved from down at the other end of the island. Literally.

I am doing fine, generally, thank you for asking.

Fun Fact:

Yesterday it rained so hard that it flooded for a few hours. Men were kayaking on the road next to where we were rehearsing.

Other Things:

It's boring to tell, but in "Annie" (the musical), I am playing Grace - the even more boring secretary to Oliver "Daddy" Warbucks. Except it seems, through some weird stage directions and dialogue, that this boring and 'kind' woman develops a drinking problem and some other forms of desperation and insanity as the show rolls along.

Though, it may just be my interpretation.

There is one part when she is supposed to faint when Oliver Warbucks (the rich man she works for and is 'in love with') tells her she is wearing a nice dress.

We cut that out.

Then there is the part where she is supposed to intercept the handing over of a check by snatching it and doing "twirls" before handing it to the other person.

We cut that out too.


However, I couldn't let the twirls go without giving them a good go-round. So today, as I mocked the script-twirls with one of my cast-mate buds, I did some manic twirls with my eyes closed off into the middle of the room.


And yes, I 'face-planted' into the back of the older actor playing Warbucks. It incapacitated me for a while. It hurt like hell, felt like I had blood trickling into my eyes, and gave me a horrible headache. I thought I had broken my nose like I did 6 years ago in a dance rehearsal doing.... you guessed it. Twirls. 

But I didn't.

This is one reason among many that I am not, and choose not, to be a dancer.

Ten hours later and I had mostly recovered though my head still hurt and still had pressure behind the eyes.

And as I hung out with my family I walked into the screen door. Face first.

As much as my face hurts as I sit here, typing with one hand while icing my face/nose, I am more freaked out by the reoccurrence of the face-plant.

I just wanted to enjoy the use of this family shore house and all my cousins/aunts/uncles sitting/running around in it. But- I guess today... I must ice my face.



This is Grace below. Imagine this number with no dancing on my part, a less-cool musical arrangement and lyrics like "Gussie her up" and "good times are comin now since you came our way, its christmas every day".

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Eminem Wrote Songs About Household Chores

To shed some more light on the naive girl I was in my youth: I didn't like rap.

Maybe this was because I followed my mother blindly (e.g. She didn't like Madonna (because of her message and pointy boobs) so when I was 6, I would ask all my babysitters if they liked Madonna, and when they said yes, I would say: "oh... welllll, my mom doesn't" and then give them a look like: I am so sorry that you can't also be approved of by my mother, like me. We can't all be perfect and well-behaved, I guess). And you had better believe she did not like rap.

Or maybe I didn't like rap because I was a ballerina sort of girl. Or because it frustrated me that I couldn't sing along to rap. Or because I was afraid of it. Or because it reminded me of school dances: being brutally bored and brutally uncomfortable in high heels bopping around to Nelly.

I just don't know. All I know is by the time Eminem was all the rage (I just googled the year) "Cleanin' Out My Closet" had already hit big. Or whatever. I don't really know because I didn't pay attention.

I was ... 14. 14! A full blown teenager in the early 2000s.

I still thought his name was "M&M" and all I really knew of him was "Will the real slim shady please stand up? Please Stand Up?" from the radio. But I would always change the station to something playing Avril Levigne... or more likely: "I Hope You Dance" by Lee Ann Womack. 

I remember I was walking from the cookie and ice cream store with one of my friends, I think Nicole, but I can't be sure, and she was saying how much she loved Eminem (probably thinking I would agree).

I said that I didn't like M&M because I really wasn't a fan of rap.

She said "Really!? God, his album Cleaning Out My Closet is so gooood"

I said "See! I mean, I don't get him at all! First of all his name is weird. And then why on earth is he writing a song about cleaning his room? That is the stupidest thing I ever heard."

"Caroline... its a metaphor. He means like examining his life choices. You know like... "skeletons in your closet" "


But, just to be fair, Lee Ann Womack was pretty profound, too. I hope you never fear those mountains in the distance either, Lee Ann.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Don't be so boring, Drinking is Fun


When I was a young girl, at the age of... 18... I still didn't drink.

Well, I was busy doing interesting things and having full time theater jobs etc. etc. But, I was also such a approval-basker that I was perfectly happy to be well-behaved, thanks.

(Plus, I was on diabetes medicine, even though I didn't have diabetes. One time the meds actually burned a hole in my esophagus. So... I couldn't drink anyway or I would ruin my stomach and liver, but that is a DIFFERENT story for a different day.)

Anywayysssssss, one time I was being a little stick in the mud- judging everyone who was just trying to have a good time and said to my mom "Ugh, I just don't understand why people have to drink to have fun! It is so annoying!"

There was a pause.

I was expecting some kind of praise, or at least approval for my straight-edge sentiments. But, no. She had to go CHANGE the game on me.

"Caroline, don't be so hard on the drinkers. Drinking is fun"



"Drinking is fun. You don't have to be angry about it.... Most people drink in high school"



Let's not even mention that I was actually on a drug that she of course knew about and paid for because I was a child! -that I expressly wasn't supposed to drink with. Not that that was the only reason I didn't drink.... I was also clearly a goodie-two-shoes with an attitude problem.

"Mom, I cannot believe you are saying this to me."

And let's be honest, I totally forget how the conversation went after that point. Maybe it ended then, or maybe it ended with her saying "I am not saying you should drink, I am just saying you shouldn't be so hard on the people that do".

Ohhhohhhhh, but I was mad. I was mad for a few reasons:

  1. How was I supposed to know how to keep the approval of my parents if they were going to tell me "Drinking is Fun?". How confusing is that
  2. How dare she be the one to make me feel bad about my straight-edge nature!?
  3. What?!?!
  4. Forget approval! How was I ever supposed to eventually rebel against her/myself if she was pushing me to accept underage drinking?
  5. And most upsettingly: was she calling me UNCOOL!?!?
Thankfully, it all ended horribly, and now I am a proper-alcoholic adult.


Saturday, July 9, 2011

Sneaker Shopping. What I learned: Nothing.

5-Minute Runs

I left my sneakers at my parent's house in PA. I rationalized that they were too heavy to carry back and forth every time, and I don't really run anymore anyway. I have my little tan colored bensimon shoes that I are fine for walking.

But, truth be told, about once or twice a week I have the urge to go for a 5-7 minute run. Laugh if you will, but it is the way it has to be for me. I gave up militant exercise and gyms for my new year's resolution, and don't force myself to do anything. Butttt... when I get the urge to go for a run, albeit only a 5 minute run, I am not going to stifle my natural, inner wild-woman.

So of course, the day after I returned sneakerless from PA, I wanted to go for a 5 minute run. BUT I HAD NO SNEAKERS. I went on a fast bensimon walk and thunk about what I had done.

"Buy New Sneakers. Keep the old ones in PA and the new ones for New York. Then you won't have to carry them back and forth ever again." said my brain to my brain

"But brain, I don't really have any money for frivolities like that, and I already bought new expensive specially sized bras yesterday. Plus I only run for like 5 minutes every week or so".

"You need new sneakers anyway", said my brain again.

Sneaker Shopping

My brain won in the end because I found myself at the big shoe store where mostly old people were shopping. I was in my puffy jcrew skirt and looked really out of place- and I was quickly turning over every tag of every sneaker looking for the cheapest pair before someone came to bother me. I wanted them to be cheap but not look like something my non-extravagant grandmother would wear. (I have two grandmothers, one wears really nice clothes (extravagant), and one doesn't (non-extravagant))

But of course, a young employee dude came up to me before I had found what I was looking for- and asked if I needed help.

"Um.... I want to buy sneakers. But I - I need a second pair for a new location and I don't use them that often so.....". I meant to say I want them to be cheap.

"Ok, so- what brand you like?" (He had some sort of urban dialect. I don't know if that is PC or not to mention, but that is why he left out the "do" in his question.)

My brain scrambled, "uh- Asics?"

Back in my cross-country days (one season, of one year of my life) I wore Asics. I think before that I wore New Balance. I have wide feet. "No Nike."

He replied, "Ok. Asics. May I ask what size you wear?"

No. You can't.

"Um..... seven and a half? I guess? Well, normally, I..."

"Miss, do you mind if I measure your feet?"

"No...". Why was he asking so weirdly?

I am technically a 6.5. I know that I am a 6.5 lengthwise, but I always buy a 7.5 or 8 in sneakers because my feet are so wide. Other shoes are a sort of a different story, but sneakers have always been this way. OK!?

I told him this about my sizing issues and he didn't believe me. He went to go get the 6.5 anyway. Dude! I told him to bring Asics and "any other brand that was under 100 dollars". As he was in the back searching, I scoured all the shoes' prices.

There was a New Balance for $70. Perfect.

Stupid Woman, Sneakers Don't Have "Seasons"

As I waited I heard this socially-inept older woman behind me say to her shoe-fitter-man that "These Shoes will be good because I can wear them into the fall". I looked behind me. They were ugly black sneakers that my extravagant grandmother would never dream of wearing. My not-extravagant one probably wears them though, but she is smart enough to know they don't "belong to any season".

Then her socially-inept husband with hair plugs and face-lift asked the shoe-fitter-man what country he came from. Israel. "Because you sounded French but not quite".

(Ok. Ok. Israeli accents actually do sound kind of French. And as much as I judged them because, how else was I supposed to amuse myself?- I think I have said the exact same thing to an Israeli person before because I am an "accent enthusiast"- then I mentally kicked myself for being so annoying.)


The Dude came back : "I found 6.5 Wides!". He was so proud of himself. But, I knew to be skeptical. I had been down this sneaker road before.

I put them on and they were small. My toe was hitting the front/top. Dude! However, I felt like I'd become as difficult as my extravagant-grandmother if I complained about the size. I mean, I clearly am not a real sneaker connoisseur! What if this is the way they are supposed to fit? Was I being weird? Was I being difficult?! Have I avoided toe-touching sneakers in my past because of some kind of neuroses or sensory issue?

I was really conflicted. I hobbled around the store in one sneaker and my puffy skirt, agonizing over whether to ask him to bring out bigger sizes.

"Um... they are hitting the front, is that normal?", I eventually asked.

Then he felt my toe area for a while and kept saying "Is this your toe?"


"Is this your toe?"


"No it's not normal, miss, it might just be because your feet are wide".

Ughhhhhh Did I not warn you?

"Yea, and I am wearing these thin little stocking/socks you gave me, not even real socks. This isn't going to fly." I don't think I actually said that.

"Do you REALLY wear a size 8 in sneakers?", he asked.




Then he ran off to get 7 1/2 - 8s in the $70 pair that I told him I was now passionate about.

He came back with 7s and 7 1/2s.

My toes still touched the front of the 7s- but he shamed me into getting them instead of the 7 1/2s. Also, I knew if I got the 7s, my little sister and her big feet could never hijack my shoes.

As I circled the store, I walked around the socially inept woman and her shoe-fitter-man a few times,  one foot in the size 7 sneaker and one in the size 7 1/2 sneaker. I muttered to myself and dude: "Am I just crazy? What is a sneaker supposed to fit like? I don't like having my toe touching the sneaker".

The Dude didn't know what to say except: "They will stretch"

Is that true? I don't think so.... I don't even know.

I bought the sneakers in a 7.


Lesson learned? None. Except that I don't know how to stand up for myself against unhelpful salesmen.

Image from Yelp: Harry's Shoes. Go read about their negative "agressive customer care". I just did.