Monthly Archives: April 2011

I Found A Boy

What a weird week. I can’t even.

Unrelated to the weirdness (or at least a separate strain), you would not believe the crazy-ass puppet show going on in my loft right now.

He’s shooting the final shots all this weekend and working his ass off to finish this by Sunday. I’m going to surprise him with Elvis Costello tickets cuz I love him SHHH DON’T TELL.

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Egg Raid On Mojo

This is the last picture taken of me with my Dad. It’s from last Easter. I had a gut feeling it would be the last one, which is why I made Justin take about five of them.

We’re going to his best friend’s sister’s house for Easter, and I’m not quite sure how I will handle that. Though, I’m sure my Grandma will say something completely awkward and embarrassing. Hey, if it gets rid of the sads, I’m cool with it.

The last time we ate with them, my visually-impaired dad almost knocked a full cup of coffee onto brand-new white carpet. John, his life-long bff, caught it just in time.

“I’m a good test to see how Christian you people really are,” my dad remarked matter-of-factly.

Justin, Patrick and I are taking his ashes to Arizona (possibly Tombstone!) in two weeks. That, plus seeing his best friend today, plus being emotional in general thanks to the peems, means it’s been an intense week. At least there’s candy.

Let’s end this on the best note ever: NIECE!

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Toof Hurty

Justin is soooo close to finishing his film! Here’s a teaser:

I love this guy so much!

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Getting Graphic

Now that I’m officially done writing about sewing machines, I can tell you my favorite story from working there. (This should also give you insight into one reason why I quit.)

About five years ago, not long after my ex-boss was promoted to that position, we were asked to create a piece promoting a new quilting machine.

The features (which were cutting edge and confidential at the time, but it’s okay to share this now) included a needle that could be positioned to let you pivot the fabric, a feeding system that controlled layers of fabric as it went through the machine, and a large, 10″+ work area to the right of the needle (which is a big deal for quilters).

After a couple days of mulling over ideas, my boss ran into my office with a mock up.

I stared at it in horror.

“[Boss]…” I said, trying to word this delicately.

“Don’t you think it’s intriguing?” she asked excitedly.

“What is this?” I asked.

“It’s a teaser question,” she said, adding, “A teaser is when you ask a question on the front that makes you want to open it.”

“Yeah, I know what a teaser is,” I said, annoyed. “But don’t you think this is a little, uh, dirty?”

“What? Why?”

“[BOSS].” I said. “NO. We need a new headline.”

“I don’t see what’s wrong with it,” she huffed as she walked away.

The headline?


A few hours later she brought it to HER boss, who stuttered, “I … I can’t let you do this.”

Then she brought it to our team meeting to ask the rest of the team what they thought. One girl gasped, and her friend leaned over and whispered (in one of those valley-girl whispers that is actually louder than talking), “IT SOUNDS LIKE A VIBRATOR.” The old print shop guys slouched in their seats uncomfortably.

Two days later she came into my office with a cool piece that folded out to a life-sized picture of the machine.

“How about this,” she said proudly, as if she was the first person to dream up this line: “‘Sometimes Size Does Matter.'”

“Get out,” I said, pointing to the door. “Just get out of here.”

This kind of discussion has happened more than once in the last five years. Also, this is the banner she made for our print shop:

Graphic Dreams! C’MON! Why am I the only person who thinks this is hilarious?

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I Used To Room In A Tomb Where I’d Sit And Freeze

My first day at work was better than I ever could have imagined. (I was so excited about the dogs, I forgot about all the Swiss chocolate.) But honestly? The only person I wanted to call afterward and share today with was my dad.

It isn’t just because this is where he worked for 25 years. (Though, the last time I applied here, he made me a list of everyone he could remember who could help me get the job. “Now … some of these people might be dead,” he said apologetically as he handed it to me.)

It’s because he was always so proud of me and my career, and even though he hasn’t been around to see me work for the last year, I wasn’t making him proud. I certainly wasn’t proud of myself. I was depressed and unmotivated and (as I told key people more than once) completely demoralized, and I spent more time sitting around and hating life than actually writing.

In fact, things were the worst at work around the time that they were the worst for him, and I didn’t want to complain to my manager or HR upper management (HR was awesome) because I was sure they would blame my outlook on what was happening at home. (If they were going to avoid the real problem as usual, then I sure as hell wasn’t going to let them pin it on my dad.)

During his memorial, all his friends and pastors talked about how proud my dad was of my brother and I for our lives and our careers. I remember sitting there while they all talked about how he bragged about my writing, when the truth was I was so depressed at work that I would stare at my computer on the verge of tears, and sometimes days would go by where I couldn’t write anything noteworthy at all. I felt like shit (well, more than you already do when you’re sitting at your father’s funeral).

Work got a little better after that (and I mean it, I loved 99% of those people like family and I was homesick for all of them today), but the problems were still there.

I’ve worked at this new place for eight hours and I already feel like I can contribute and grow. Dog parks and koi ponds and cookies aside, I’m thrilled to be at this new place because I can be productive and appreciated. I’m proud that I made it here. And now I get to earn all of that pride he had in me.

(Bittersweet stuff aside … it’s pretty dope, you guys. I have no idea what I’ve gotten myself into.)

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Sads Hour

On my last day at my former job, I made Jeff a Baby Mumbles:

I had my Goodbye Happy Hour afterward and it was really fun. But obviously, I sniffled all the way home. I love these people so much!

Oh, and I wore the “I Quit!” ribbon that Justin gave me for my Smoke-Free Anniversary:

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Spanx For The Memories

On Saturday, Justin, Sarah, Brent and I went to the St. Louis premiere of The Pruitt-Igoe Myth. It was extremely powerful. For those of you who don’t know, Pruitt-Igoe was a public housing development  that took up 57 acres of downtown St. Louis for over 20 years. The goal was to create a utopian environment (it was designed by Minoru Yamasaki, the architect behind the World Trade Center). It started out that way, but ended with tragic results.

The image of the Pruitt-Igoe’s demise is very famous; it was often seen as the death of modern architecture.

The screening was really heavy, and many of the former residents that he interviewed were in the audience and spoke up during the Q&A session. It’s going to be on the festival circuit for a while, and then he hopes to make it to PBS. Catch it whenever you have a chance!


I finally caved and bought actual spandex pants to run in (as opposed to baggy Target yoga pants). I was hesitant to show downtown St. Louis how bangin’ my ass really is (and the homeless guy who cried, “Daaaaaaamn” the second I stepped out the door didn’t help) but I made it to the Y and back alive. And holy crap, I ran so much in between!

I haven’t run in over a week because I pulled some muscle in my thigh, so I wasn’t expecting to run more than three miles on Saturday, but I ran five miles easily, in record time! I could’ve run seven, but I had to get home to Justin and I have a tendency to overdo things like that, anyway. I have the feeling I’ll be able to run ten miles by the end of the summer. Hooray for spandex!

During the week I couldn’t run, Justin and I did a ton of downtown walking. One night we walked to the stadium to watch a game with Jen and Ron (I’ll miss you, corporate Redbird Club tickets!), and one night we walked all the way to the riverfront and back. (If you’ve never walked all the way down to the Poplar Street Bridge, I, uh, don’t recommend it. Lots of dudes sitting in their cars doing lord knows what.) This week we’re going to walk to my new work building and back so I can see what I’m getting into.

I can take the Downtown Trolley to work, too! My life is getting hilariously fun.

(Yes, I realize it’s not a trolley. Much like children and my boyfriend, I’ll forgive abuse of the English language if you’re adorable.)


Justin and I have finally finished the Buffy/Wire Club. 12 seasons of legendary TV in the can. We haven’t decided what shows to watch next, but Breaking Bad and Mad Men are on the list. He’s pushing News Radio and I’m pushing Veronica Mars and Battlestar Gallactica. We’ll see.


My April Plus goal is going … all right. My cousin is letting us choose our bridesmaid dresses (they just have to be fuchsia and white, by the same designer) and I found a super cute one that won’t fall off of me if I go ahead and lose the other 20 lbs. anyway. So while the pressure’s off, I’m still aiming to lose as much as possible before the fitting.

My jeans officially don’t fit anymore, even fresh out of the dryer. WOO!


This is my last week at my current job! It’s starting to sink in how much I will miss all of these people. Aside from two people, I really love everyone here. This has been my family for the last six years and it’s going to be so hard to say goodbye.


Davy is finally screening My Heart is An Idiot around the country, and they’re coming here at the end of the month. One reason I’m glad that I’m leaving my job is that I won’t be stuck at the Quilt Festival in Paducah, Kentucky at the end of the month, so I’ll be able to go.

It will be weird to introduce Justin to Davy because … well, you know … but it’ll be so nice to see him. Also, I saw on Facebook that my ex best friend is going? I’m sort of dreading running into her in that kind of environment, but I’m determined to not let her ruin anything else for me ever again.

Finally, I’m in this week’s Extra Hot Great podcast – I submitted an episode of Freaks and Geeks into the EHG Canon! Woo!

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Grapes of Wrath

I went to the wineries for the very first time yesterday with Kendra and Jane. We went to Balducci and Sugar Creek. I had no idea there were so many gorgeous wineries nearby. It was awesome! HOWEVER.

I got home around 6, passed out took a nap, and woke up at 10:30 with a hangover. What? When did that become something that happens? Is this because I’m thirty?

Something else I learned at the wineries: if you’re going to drink outside in 50 mph winds, put a lid on the ranch dressing.

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April Plus: Saying “I Guess” To The Dress

So I’ve been on this weight loss kick for a while, but in March I really slacked off. Mostly because I weigh less than I’ve weighed in almost three years, so I have this newfound confidence and I feel amazing. I’ve been much less apprehensive about eating/drinking great stuff.

AND, in the process of revealing my new job to everyone I know one by one, I’ve been in celebration mode for over two weeks. Everybody wants to take me out to lunch! Everyone wants to buy me a drink! People are driving me to wineries! A 600-calorie tequila slurpie? Yes please!

So while I haven’t gained any weight, I’ve been balancing between a 15 and 17 lb. loss, and I really want to get my ass in gear.

What’s the dress about? Well, I’m not going to be Mrs. Tolliver any time soon (and when that happens, I’m wearing green). I’m going to be a bridesmaid for my cousin in September. I have to wear a strapless hot pink dress and have my make-up done by the St. Louis Rams Cheerleaders’ cosmotolagist, so I am going to look like a drag queen no matter what, I think.

But I have to get fitted for the dress by the end of this month, and after that I won’t be able to lose more than 10 pounds without the dress no longer fitting. So I want to get within 15 pounds of my goal by then. I can lose 10 more over the summer. (I can handle being 5 pounds over my goal til September … I don’t remember ever weighing that little in my life, so I may even stop there.)

SOOO, as of today, I need to lose 9 more pounds. I’m not expecting to lose all of it, but I took a month off and I can’t afford to do that again.

I’ll still celebrate and enjoy good food, but rather than just taking a “day off” with the BodyBugg, I’m going to attempt to make up every extra calorie at the Y. It’s going to be hard, but I went a month without cheese! I threw a concert! I scored my dream job! I do what I want!

I should add that I just want to weigh within the range that every doctor and healthy chart suggests (my priorities are now in their thirties, too), so I’m aiming for the number in the middle. If you’re doing the math above, I wanted to lose 40 pounds, though losing 35 will still keep me in the healthy range. I might look weird if I lose any more, anyway.

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