Monthly Archives: July 2007

A Lose-Win Situation

I have lost approximately 15% of myself.

Fortunately for me, it’s the part of myself that was sad all of the time, scared of people, and liked to eat food with names like “Gordita”. It’s the part that kept me hostage in my apartment for a year, the part that made me write sad blogs, and the part that made me miss people I shouldn’t miss anymore.

I still want to lose 10% more of myself. Hopefully it will be the part that procrastinates, the part that reads Perez Hilton every hour, the part that watches “Rock of Love” and the part that is still madly, desperately in love with cigarettes.

Yes, I know I’m supposed to love myself. But honestly, some of me seriously had to go and I am enjoying cleaning house. After all, only 85% of me can fit into size 6 pants.

~~~*~~~

This month, Shortcake had more hits than ever. In fact, 10% of my total hits are from this month alone, and I’ve had this silly thing for three years.

Therefore, 85% of my newfound confidence is from you guys – people like Francis, RØB, Heather, Ryan, and everyone else who has encouraged me to keep it up. I’ve been trying to make you guys smile, and somehow in the process I started smiling again, too. It’s really humbling, and it makes me want to write new stories and try new things in general. Thank you so much. Honestly.

(The other 15% came strictly from Josh Arnold.)

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Guess What, Kids

Mommy’s got her first gray hair:

I’m keeping it for now. I still get carded for cigarettes, so it’s like a novelty. For now.

~~~*~~~

I want to throw out a big huge CONGRATS to my Sludgie boss Francis and my second-favorite blogger Stee for their success with the web series God, Inc.

Stee explains the good news here. His wife, btw, is my favorite blogger.

Here’s a super cute post Francis made a while ago explaining God, Inc. and all of the work they were doing:

All that hard work paid off, though. Way to go, guys!

~~~*~~~

I finished Harry Potter yesterday. I also started it yesterday. My butt is still asleep.

I won’t give away anything about the ending. There were crushingly sad parts and adorably lovely parts. That’s all you get.

Last night at 11:30, I had 15 pages to go – that’s fifteen, one-five – and my roommate came home from the bar and attacked me, desperately wanting to talk about girls and relationships for two hours. Fifteen pages. Two hours.

“Noooo!” He moaned, as I tried to pretend-listen and keep reading, “Listen to meeeeee! This is impooooortant! What should I doooooo?”

Because of the good moral lessons I had been absorbing from Harry all day, I obliged. And I love my roommate. But still, he’s lucky I left my wand in my car.

~~~*~~~

So here’s a question. Why does my On Demand movie menu:

… have a category just for Matt Damon?

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Just So You Know

First things first: Damn, Ron Weasley! And I do mean daaaaaaaamn.

Between Harry Potter and Transformers, this is turning into the Summer of High School Boys. Seriously, what is up with me? This can’t become a habit.

Jen, Ron and I saw Harry Potter this weekend IN 3-D and it was delightful, despite the sad ending and not enough Rupert Grint. Honestly, I love all of those Weasley boys (except for Percy, obviously). I seriously forgot about everything that happens in that book. I read it while in Connecticut, which should tell you how long ago that was. Jen had to tell me about all the parts that were cut out.

Book 7 is coming. Brace yourselves…

~~~*~~~

I am eating nectarines and texting a cute boy. Can you tell that I am smiling?

~~~*~~~

So I told you I was going to that shrink to help with my sleeping? Well, I went today and I couldn’t complain about anything; I was that happy. She gave me a blank appointment card, which means I “graduated”. I am still not sleeping, but that’s to be expected.

~~~*~~~

For three days, I seriously thought our apartment cat had been kidnapped by a train hobo.

Good news: the cat is back. Bad news: I think the train hobo is actually my new neighbor.

Ordinarily I would never refer to a transient resident as a “train hobo”, but it’s better than “bitch”, which is what she is.

~~~*~~~

So this is how stressful my job is right now: I have a pack of cigarettes in my desk drawer. I don’t want to smoke at the bar or when I’m driving or whatever. Just at work.

This has made me pretty laid-back on the job despite the chaos. Also: sometimes in the morning, I think about the cigarettes and I’m like, “YAY, I get to go to work!!!”

~~~*~~~

I forgot how much fun it is to have money. I am having fun. Money means I get to buy books like these:

and do things like this:

~~~*~~~

I am in the midst of planning another Redneck Rendezvous, which is one of my all-time favorite activities.

See kids, the Midwest is not like New England, where you can drive though four states in four hours. We have make it all the way through Kansas or Illinois before we can get anywhere interesting, and those trips are both unbelievably exhausting.

So when I want to see friends who are more than a state away, we both start driving towards each other’s respective cities. Then we meet in the middle… which is usually the middle of nowhere. Hence, the Redneck Rendezvous. I am so psyched!

~~~*~~~

And finally, just cuz I can:

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Run for the Borders

She sang every song that way. At the senior variety show, she had performed “Happy Together” with such fragile melancholy during rehersals that rumors began circulating that, on show night, she would whisper the final words,

I can’t see me loving nobody but you

then produce an antique pistol from beneath her spidery shawl and shoot Jared Farrell in the nuts before blowing her brains out. Nobody wanted to follow that. Throughout the final performance, Mr. Bernard had stood in the wings clutching a fire extinguisher, with a vague plan.

I Love You, Beth Cooper, by Larry Doyle

~~~*~~~

Man, three lines into page 2, and I’m already in love.

Last week was bonus week. And y’all, sometimes I just gotta spend money.

Target is the best place for this, hands down. If I don’t have much money, then Walgreens will do. Never the mall. Ever. Vintage Vinyl or Euclid Records are the best for when I’m feeling inspired. But on the rare occasion that I am blessed with both a bunch of money and a bunch of free time to sit in the park, that’s when I go for the books.

Yesterday I bought three: I Love You, Beth Cooper by Larry Doyle, After Dark by Haruki Murakami, and another one which I am probably going to exchange. Any suggestions? The one I bought takes place in one of my favorite settings (boarding school), so I thought it would rock. Unfortunately it seems to be about politics and war and other boring boyish stuff. Barf. Usually I love books and movies that are set in worlds without many (or any) grown-ups, like summer camp and orphanages and boarding schools.

Speaking of boarding schools, I don’t know why the hell I’m spending so much money on books when HARRY POTTER is coming out so soon. I should be doing my homework like Jen and re-reading books 5 and 6, but I don’t know if I’m ready for the cocoon-like state that Harry Potter books tend to induce. I need to start doing stretches and stocking up on Kleenex to prepare for book 7. You can’t just jump into a Harry Potter book; it’s dangerous. I will tell you more about the repercussions on another day.

So, I started I Love You, Beth Cooper last night and I adoooore it. I’m already about halfway through. I laugh out loud every two or three pages. It’s a bit of a tribute to every movie/book/story where the geeky guy gets the girl (assuming he gets the girl… not sure yet), but it still comes off as original and fun. Seriously, READ THIS BOOK.

I can’t wait to start After Dark, though. Aside from the fact that reading Murakami is a dream, I’m psyched for the same reason that I was psyched about Chuck Klosterman IV: this book is HOT! The cover is sick and I just want to keep it on my nightstand forever. It’s even adorable when you take off the book jacket. (Purple covers with a hot pink spine? Eeee!)

Really, I started reading at night again because it helps me fall asleep. But now my nightstand looks like this:

How am I supposed to get through all of that? I feel like I’m in college again. Which is good in a way, I guess, because I used to stay up all night reading or writing and I wasn’t tired the next day.

Speaking of college, Kevin came over last night and hung out for a few hours… he’s leaving for Prague today. Hanging out with Kevin is perfect. It takes me back to two years ago and I feel like my old self again. I really needed that. Kevin rocks.

He needed some airplane books. I would have handed over I Love You, Beth Cooper, but at that point I was on page 12 and seriously couldn’t wait 12 hours to get a new copy. I’m so selfish, Kevin. I will give it to you for your flight to Korea.

Instead, I gave him two of my favorites – High Fidelity and A Confederacy of Dunces. I always recommend High Fidelity to boys, especially the ones who love music. Kevin hasn’t seen the movie, either, which makes him a perfect candidate. It’s hard to not play the movie in your head as you’re reading. High Fidelity is one of the best film adaptations I’ve ever seen, and it’s set on a different continent.

I read A Confederacy of Dunces 6 or 7 years ago, and it’s still one of my all-time favorites. I gave TSGoC a copy of this one when he flew to Thailand. It’s a bit like Gone With the Wind in that I’ve read it three times, but I’d have to read it again to tell you what happens. The backstory is worth a read – it’s pretty incredible and touching.*

Even though I was an English major, I don’t claim to know a lot about literature. I just like to read in general and I like to make it fun, and it’s always nice to pass my favorite books along. If anybody wants one – or if anyone wants to trade! – just let me know! I vowed to walk/run 30 miles this week and I have 8 to go, so I’ll probably finish a book or two on the treadmill.

*Wikipedia notes that this is Augusten Burroughs’ favorite book. That makes perfect sense – Augusten Burroughs totally rocks and you should read all his stuff, too. However, you know who else lists this as her favorite? Mischa effing Barton, which immediately cancels out Augusten Burroughs. Ugh. Even in death, Marissa Cooper finds a way to ruin things for me.

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Bustin’ Out

I’ve been semi-hopeful for the past few weeks because I thought that I was getting a breast reduction (or as I like to call it, the ol’ Punky Brewster). Well, I just found out that my insurance denied it because… I’m too small? I’m pretty bummed out about it… I really thought I was going to be free from at least one (or rather, two) of the issues that have been plaguing me lately. Instead, I’m stuck with them. The story of my life. But no one’s ever accused me of being too FLAT before, so… silver lining.

~~~*~~~

Last weekend, my mom was looking out the kitchen window at the house behind ours. She commented that Mr. Blattner, the 90-year-old widower, was outside. “You should go over there and talk to him,” she said. “He always asks about you.”

Mr. and Mrs. Blattner were always really sweet to me. They gave my brother and I Easter candy every year, plus graduation cards and stuff. I had just finished running 8 miles on the treadmill, though, so I thought to myself, “I’ll go over there some other day.”

Immediately after I said this, I thought about the last photograph I took of my old dog, Midnight. She was by the window in the kitchen, trying to sleep… that’s mainly what she did in those last few months. I laid down on the floor and kissed her nose, and then I snapped a picture.

As I stood up, I thought to myself, “That’s probably the last picture I’ll ever take of her.”

She died a week later. My mom sat with her while Tanner’s dad put her to sleep.

So when I told myself, “I’ll go over there some other day,” I thought about that picture, and then I couldn’t help but think, “So, he’s probably going to die, like just because I thought that.”

He died two days ago. He fell on the sidewalk in front of his house, and my mom saw it and ran over to help. His son took him to the hospital and he died the next morning.

Here are two things that drive my shrink crazy:

1. My mom is the most selfless person in the world and she has to deal with so much. When something bad happens to her, I feel so angry and anxious and helpless that I can’t even function. This drives my shrink crazy because we both know that I can’t change the past, I can’t fix my dad, etc. etc.

2. I killed my dog and Mr. Blattner with my brain – obviously – and I feel like I did something bad to my mom. This drives my shrink crazy because we both know it’s not true, but I’m still sick to my stomach and I still want to cry because I feel guilty.

This is a bummer of an entry. But I’ve been a bummer of a person lately, which is one reason why I’m going to the shrink. She thinks I am “bonkers in the best way”. I like her.

I had a conversation with a friend recently about my insomnia. He is really into therapy and 12-stepish things, so he suggested “talking it out” with somebody. So that’s what I’m doing, and this week I’m supposed to “identify negative thinking”.

Like, when a certain person walks by and I think, “What a bitch!” I immediately have to identify it: “Labeling!”

So what the hell does this have to do with 4th of July? I love the 4th more than any other holiday, but for the past few years I’ve gotten super anxious even just thinking about it. I can’t tell you why, but it makes my head hurt and my heart race and a bunch of other stuff. I get pretty stressed out in the days leading up to it. So I had to identify a bunch of negative thinking yesterday, and it turned out to be a pretty delightful day. I really do love the 4th and I love the people that I spend it with.

So yeah… I’m working on being happier and more optimistic, and hopefully this will help me sleep. Also hopefully, I won’t write any more bummer entries (although if someone dedicated their entire blog to Shrink Homework, I would be all up in that shit and I know you would be too).

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