May 27, 2009

Wedding Project #1

I mentioned some wedding projects I've been working on and here is the flower project. I read on one of the fabulous wedding blogs I browse about making fabric boutonnieres so I bought a bunch of fabrics in my colors of purple, teal, and gold. My crafty friends Karen and Lyndy helped me cut and put some prototypes together and here's what we came up with:

We have enough to make bouquets, boutonnieres, and corsages. The whole gang will have their flowers of fabric and made by hand. I love it. These are just the beginning. I hope the others will look less... smooshed. I bought the wrong gauge wires and trying to wrap the wires around the fabric was proving difficult and resulted in the smooshed look. I haven't touched the project in months but it's so much fun. I need to get it in sight so it's in mind- right now it's in the office. It's so easy I can just pick it up whenever I'm sitting around watching Golden Girls- which is turning into three hours a day. I never realized how funny that show really is. It totally stands the test of time. I digress. If you need a project I totally suggest you take up making some fabric flowers.

The thing that's most exciting about them is surprisingly not how cheap they are to make but the fact that everyone involved will have a souvenir that lasts. I know the fellows aren't going to use them as book marks or something but their lady friends can. It's also really fantastic putting more than my money into the wedding. I'm putting my sense of style into it. I'm very excited.

I Wasn't Kidding

Remember when I said I drink a lot of tea? Well, this is all but one big box of various black tea blends:

There's two different laxative teas, at least three green teas, three white tea blends, one peppermint tea (there's also a whole box of peppermint tea in my desk,) one earl grey, a lavender tea, an orange tea, a peach Melba tea, a Christmas blend, and two sweet tea blends. There's an oolong tea somewhere in there but it's blended with a white tea. And there are immunity teas and some generic Lipton teas. Yeah. I drink them all. I totally dig all teas but I think peppermint may be my favorite because it is such a great palette cleanser. Do you have any favorites?

May 26, 2009

That's Nana For You

My grandmother told my sister today that should there be another Great Depression none of her grandchildren would be able to make it. Not me, not my mother, not my sister, not even my cousin out of whose ass the sun shines would survive the trials and tribulations that we could face should there be another Dust Bowl or Black Tuesday. She believes we have no skills for survival. What amazing faith that woman has in her offspring. And people wonder why I harbor such hate for her.

She's allowed to think her grand kids are stupid. That's her prerogative. But why does she feel the need to share such feelings? TO HER GRAND KID? And you know what, we aren't stupid. In fact, we are all very capable. Just because we don't keep chickens (for now) and make clothes out of our belly button lint doesn't mean we would STARVE. She can stick it up her ass.

May 19, 2009

Feelings, Nothing More Than Feelings

I took a Carl Jung personality test at work today. These are my results and a link to the test.

ENFJ - "Persuader". Outstanding leader of groups. Can be aggressive at helping others to be the best that they can be. 2.5% of total population.
Free Jung Personality Test (similar to Myers-Briggs/MBTI)

I think that is a fairly accurate assessment. I'm always pushing people to do things that they are too nervous to try or show any hesitation about it. I make it crystal clear what they are capable of doing and if they aren't doing it I get pissed. I won't do it for myself though. Mike fills that need perfectly.

When you get into the nitty gritty of the results it's even more accurate, however I don't know why bookseller or DJ is in the list of undesirable jobs. I love books and I always daydream about being an awesome DJ- I make killer play lists if I say so myself. But this was also an Internet test, not the real thing. Besides, I went back and took it again and got this:

ENTJ - "Field Marshall". The basic driving force and need is to lead. Tend to seek a position of responsibility and enjoys being an executive. 1.8% of total population.

I guess it's safe to say I'm an extroverted, intuitive judger but I changed the thinker and feeler. That's strange because as a thinker I should stay away from the performing arts. The first result was the best yet because that is totally false. I guess that means I'm an ENFJ. Either way I am rare. And I dig that.

May 15, 2009

First Race of 2009 Results

I swam 350 yards in 6:30 blindness.

I biked 11 miles in 47:01 coldness.

I ran 3.1 miles in 38:04 stiffness.

I did it all in 1:31:48 success-fullness and came in 115 out 139 and 4 out of 5 in my age group.

Looking at all these numbers on their own I feel like a slow tub of goo. But man, I can't wait for July. It's just so much fun! Maybe I'll improve from last year...

Three Songs That I Play Illegally Loud in My Car

I always turn these songs up no matter what I'm listening to them on- computer, iPod, car stereo. I just love them.

Crystal by New Order

The bass line is not one to be ignored. It just kicks ass.

Get Together by Madonna

I like to lose myself in this.

Fire Eye'd Boy by Broken Social Scene

This song makes me want to learn the bass guitar and dance around like an idiot.

May 13, 2009

But I Thought It Didn't Strike Twice

The past two nights this week I've dreamt of lightning striking and me warning people to take shelter during the storm. The first night the dream had lightning that set fire to a building, a group of people were so interested that they walked out into the storm and I yelled at them all to take cover. The second dream was about me and a man out in a field when a freak storm came and he took shelter under a lone tree that was then struck with him underneath it. Dreams with similar sort of ideas back to back. How strange.

I've never dreamt of anything twice in a row nor dreamt of lightning. What is going on here? I conducted a search (googled a search) and there are a few variations on the symbolism of lightning in dreams. Some interpretations say that the flashes of light are a warning, some say that it represents a flash of genius. One sort of terrible one says there will be happiness and prosperity that will only last for a short time. That sucks. But the idea that the lightning means the beginning of a creative project is the one that appeals to me the most.

Maybe my dreams are trying to tell me I'll finally get a new job. One that lets me have some creativity or at least an opportunity to grow. Maybe I'll just figure out how to creatively pay for my wedding that won't fuck with my credit score. Then again, I had tons of dreams about pregnancy a few years back and dreaming of pregnancy means the beginning of a figurative new life- not, like I thought, that I was preggo at the time of the dream. And no new things really happened at that time in my life. Crappy, lying dreams.

Of course, I could be having these dreams because I thought I was going to be struck by lightning on Saturday when I was riding my bike through a quick moving thunderstorm. Maybe my subconscious is just that literal.

May 12, 2009

Everyone, Even the Homos

Today in the New York State Assembly a pivotal bill is trying to be passed by the Democrats. It's a bill that the governor has faith will pass in the State Senate. It's a bill that will bring equality to a minority group. It is a bill far too late in the making. It's a gay marriage bill. And it must pass. It absolutely must. It is a step that must be taken in order to create a truly free America.

When Proposition 8 failed in California I couldn't believe it. I just can't fathom how an entire population can vote to deny other human beings a basic right. It's infuriating really. As long as people aren't being forced to marry against their will and all parties involved are consenting adults, who cares who marries whom? Who CARES!? Whatever happened to live and let live? Live free or die? Do unto others?

This isn't an issue of the "sanctity of marriage," this is an issue of people forcing their beliefs on others. If marriage was so sacred and people feel they need the government to enforce this sacredness, then these same people need to lobby to make a divorce so difficult obtain that the divorce rate decreases dramatically. Isn't that what the government did with bankruptcies- they made them harder to declare because so many people were doing it? Shouldn't they do that with divorce? I bet you one MILLION dollars that if the government were to make divorce illegal or something very difficult to obtain, those very religious assholes would be the first to fight to bring it back. I guarantee those same people would declare, how dare you take away my right!

I say to them, how dare you keep this right from others? This is not an issue of religiosity. This is an issue of equality. An issue of civil rights. Modern marriage has nothing to do with religion. It has everything to do with combining two people's lives to create a family and a home filled with love. The point is, religion has nothing to do with making gay marriage legal. It has everything to do with gaining equal, legal rights for a population of Americans.

Can you fathom trying to visit your partner/spouse/lover in the hospital but you can't because you have no way to legally prove you are related to your partner/spouse/lover? You can't claim their pension plan if they die. You can't adopt a child who needs a home because your partner/spouse/lover is of the same gender as you. So on and so forth. It is unacceptable that our legal system makes these troubles a reality in thousands of people's lives. The denial of these rights is outright un-American, unconstitutional and unacceptable. Everyone deserves to marry whomever they love.

This bill needs to pass in New York State. I need it to pass in New York State. That way I can really mean it when I say I'm proud to be a New Yorker. That here in New York we're trying to create a better America. An America where equality is a given. The America that I believe in.

Tip-toe in These Tulips

One of my most favorite things about living in Albany is the Dutch history. Albany is one of the oldest cities in the country and one of the few with a visible Dutch influence. There are streets named after some of the earlier Dutch settlers, some of our oldest buildings are Dutch in design and our fair city has its tulips. In order to celebrate the unique background of Albany every Mother's Day weekend Albany has a Tulip Festival. Bands come to perform, vendors can sell their wares to thousands, and college kids can get drunk in the park without so much as a warning. I'm not a fan of the festival but I am a huge fan of the flowers the festival celebrates. Tulips are quite possibly my absolute favorite flower. Not only are they lovely but they are a hearty flower. I find them to be a symbol of strength and tenacity. Beautiful stubbornness.

Tulips are actually not Dutch in origin. They hail from Persia. Tulip bulbs were presented as gifts to different nations from different nations and sort of found its way to Western Europe. I guess the Dutch had little in the way of a national symbol so they picked the tulip. And boy, did tulips play a huge part over there. Tulip speculation caused one of the biggest economic crashes in Dutch history. But I digress. All that matters to me is that I live in a place that plants tulips all over the friggin' place. And I love it. Join me in my love of tulips. These are pictures from the park a block from my apartment.

May 9, 2009

I Wouldn't Have Guessed

I just completed Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrell by Susanna Clarke. It was one of my goals for 2009. I fully expected to finish it and jump for joy, finally feel free of the shackles. But I can't help but feel sad. I had that book to come back to for almost two years. I came back to characters I knew and found interesting. It was not totally unlike reading a whole series back to back but there was something different this time. Probably because since it wasn't a series it was just the single adventure. After over 800 pages I'm done! But I feel a little empty. Maybe even a little lonely.

May 8, 2009

Is There Crying in Softball?

I play in a recreational softball league during the summer months and we had our first two games earlier this week. I played catcher last season and I don't know where I'm going to be placed this season. I can only hope I'm the catcher fairly often so my body can get used to the ridiculousness that is the constant squatting and getting up that is the job description of catcher. I mean, after playing catcher after one game THREE DAYS ago I walk like I don't know how to use my knees. It hurts SO MUCH to do anything. I'm so sore I move like this guy after the alien takes over his body:

No amount of stretching or other kinds of exercise can make this go away. I hope I can get back to training for July sooner than later. Right now I feel like my thigh muscles are pulled pork.

May 5, 2009

Like Brownies?

Almost routinely I get oogled by dirty men on my way home from work. I walk a sketchy part of town (really not that sketchy but really very dirty) and always pass some dude a little verbose with his adoration of my ass. It's usually a, "hey baby, how you doin'?" or something along those lines. But lately these dudes have been really... different. On Thursday of last week it was two old fellows who let me walk past them only to smack their lips and murmur things in the affirmative. That was a new approach. But I don't think anything will beat what happened yesterday.

I'm on the phone with my friend Tina when I'm walking past a parking lot while a truck pulls in. The passenger is right next to me when he asks me how I'm doing. I answer that I'm fine and keep walking and talking to Tina. I'm stuck waiting to cross the street and I hear him doing the usual, mmmm yeah crap. I turn and say thank you, yeah okay or whatever just to wave him off. Then I hear real yelling and I turn to make sure everything is okay. The same guy is standing the doorway yelling at me, "Whatever it is you are eating keep eating it!"



May 4, 2009

One Down...

Sunday I participated in my first triathlon of the season! It was a very impromptu sort of race. I decided only a month ago that I was going to do it and I am so glad I did. I wasn't that glad when I got to the race. I was by myself and freaking out. So I called my dad and he calmed me down. (Thanks, Dad!) I don't know what freaks me out the most about my races. Is it that I'm not confident in my abilities? Is it that it was my first time at the race? Was it that I was by myself for the first time? Was it the fact that I knew nothing about how the swim in a pool would work? I just don't know (though it is a little daunting knowing I'll be in non-stop intense physical activity for the better part of two hours no matter how hard I trained.) I'll have a better idea in July when I do the Pinebush race for the second time. I'll let you know about the butterflies then.

So I'm lining up to get in the pool studying how the people are flipping and sharing lanes and swimming and stuff when I look up and see Lynette, Carrie and Emily waving excitedly at me. I am so grateful they made it and my heartbeat slows down. Then we make it opposite the door leading outside and I see Mike waving and smiling at me. I didn't know if he would be there for the start. We each had stag parties the night before and I didn't want him to hold back on the fun for my race but I knew he would make it for the end. And I was totally okay with that. But when I saw him before my start I begin to cry. The friendly woman next to me asks if I'm okay and I explain about Mike. She tells me I have to be extra great at the race now. I think, he thinks I'm extra great already.

The race helper tells me I can jump into the pool when I'm ready and I walk over the timing mats and jump in, ready to go! Except I forgot to put my goggles over my eyes. I pull them on once I'm in the water but I can barely make out the lines at the bottom of the pool. What the eff was I going to do if I lost the lenses? My glasses were in the locker room! At the end of each lane I pause to make sure I'm on the right side of the rope. I don't get to do good flips and I'm freaking out that I lost my contacts in the water but as soon as I get out of the pool I take off the goggles and I can see!! Emily asks if my goggles pulled a Michael Phelps. Um, yes. I'm bummed that my swim wasn't my best but I get over it.

Onward to my bike. Mike and my friends cheer me off and here I go! I'm always scared I'll get lost at these races and Mike always assures me that I'm not going to be alone. Well. This is a small race. I'm alone ALMOST THE ENTIRE RIDE. I worried only at one turn. But it was fairly well marked and there were volunteers at every intersection. They were all so cool and supportive!

By the time I get back to transition my hands are immobile due to the cold air and wind and I fumble to put on my running gear. Carrie directs me to the run because I don't know where it starts. Mike asks how I feel and I'm like, AWESOME! But my legs feel like lead and it takes me a good mile for my legs to feel normal again. Every person who passed me was like, looking great- finish strong! I know they are being supportive of a fellow racer but it sucks being passed. I just wish I passed one person. Once. In any portion of the race.

But you know what? I made it. I finished. And I cried. My friends had to remind me how to open a cut banana but once I had my bearings back I felt great. I am really proud of what I accomplished yesterday. I may be slow but it is great fun and so gratifying. I can't wait to do it again.