Friday, March 27, 2009

Try, Try Again

Gosh durnit. The fancy new layout was lookin' saaaweeeeet, until a friend informed me that my comments were disabled. Obviously, the code I used for the template was en EspaƱol y HTML, two languages I am only just passable in. Like, I can get to the bathroom in Mexico and strike out words, but please don't ask me to give you directions on cascading style sheets or how to get to the biblioteca.

Don't be surprised if the layout changes a few more times - I'm a girl on a mission.

Monday, March 23, 2009

So Uncool It's...Hot?

I just got back from dinner with a friend, and I cannot believe some of the things that came out of my mouth tonight. Separately, none of these thoughts are particularly nerdy. Together, though, and I'm suddenly battling Violet for the rights to Samuel "Screech" Powers' heart. Oh, good; apparently, I am still in rare form.

On why I'd like to go to grad school: "I really miss doing research and writing papers."

On the book I'm reading: "It's about the presidents' speechwriters since FDR. It's so boring, but I love it."

And, finally, on doing taxes: "I tried doing them online and I loved filling in all the answers from the 1099s...."

I think there was something else, but I've already dug myself a pretty big hole. I think I'll put down the shovel.

Friday, March 20, 2009

5 Bucks Says Your Officemate ISN'T Doing This

My company is working on a really unique campaign - as we get down to the final week of the project, the chances of walking in on an employee playing with crayons has increased exponentially. But it's not slacking off, or reverting to the safety of childhood (though I think we could all use that). This is legitimate work.

This week, my officemate has been hoarding glass pitchers and jars from the kitchen here, which is just another random activity for this campaign that appears abnormal and time-wasting out of context. As I walked to the kitchen today, I realized that something smelled truly amazing - and the Lean Cuisine lunch brigade doesn't have that kind of affect on the hallway. There was my fellow office-denizen (who moonlights as a bartender in Georgetown) slicing up fruits and creating an olfactory delight:

Yes, he is making infused drinks for a campaign event on Tuesday night in DC. Alcoholic drinks. I feel fairly confident that no one else's office colleague is doing this today at work. I'd put money on it - although I also put money on my NCAA bracket and I'm not even a skotch confident about that one.

PS: If you want info on where you can taste these amazing concoctions, drop me a line - it's a charity event for a GREAT cause.

Monday, March 9, 2009

Parades, Part II: Girl Stereotypes

This weekend I went to Old Town for the St. Patrick's Day parade. I don't go to Alexandria often, and I'm always a little overwhelmed by the stark contrast with Arlington. My current hometown teems with young 20-somethings, most of whom are on the prowl, whereas Alexandria is like the next chapter in the book on growing up. Everyone has a dog, a baby in a stroller, or - as I happened to witness at least 2x on Saturday - dogs in strollers. It's a weird world over there.

Speaking of dogs though, I gotta say I just don't get the rationale behind dog clothing. It's one girl stereotype I just don't really get. Maybe when I have more disposable income, I'll be intereted in buying teeny sweaters and raincoats for a Shih Tzu but right now it's just a little left of absurd. In the interest of full disclosure, though, I must admit that I am trying to expand my knitting skillz past scarves, hats, and arm or leg warmers. The first sweater I make will probably be for my mom's miniature poodle; I have this awesome pattern for a grey sweater with a shark fin on it and I figure it's small enough that I won't get discouraged and give up. And Cassidy, bless his little puppy dog heart, will do pretty much anything for attention. He's the ultimate lap dog and I think that explains why a few summers ago, I had absolutely no trouble getting him to sit still for this:

Eh, dogs are colorblind anyway.

But, there is one female stereotype that I cannot fight - there is something about a man in uniform that just drives my gender wild, and I'm not immune to that one. There are of course lines of distinction. For example, the image on the left does a lot more for me than the image on the right. God Bless America - but the one in 2009 more so than the one from 1789.

Just like the dogs in clothes, though, men in uniform are much more "look" than "touch" to me. Nifty little dating cliches like "Don't trust a man with two first names" and "Never date a man in uniform" come with correlating tales of caution to back them up. Like the really hot cop in my town that was at all the pre-prom safety events for my senior year. He was hot enough that he still came up in conversation on college summer break - especially the year he was in the newspaper for severely injuring his mother with brute force. It would only have been better if his name was John Davis or Steve Craig.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Forever Blowing Bubbles

Today was definitely not a contender for "Best Day Ever." It really didn't even make it through the qualifying rounds. I've got some ish to deal with, and it's not enjoyable. It's also made me think about a whole slew of other topics that I've been pretty good at compartmentalizing for the last year and a half, so I've had a hard time concentrating. I went to the gym after work, hoping that I could run out the blues, but it didn't really do the trick. Still feeling blah when I got home, I decided a long hot shower was in order. As I stood there in one of the most stereotypical "girl depressed while standing in shower" poses, I reached for my face wash and realized that, no matter how down-in-the-dumps I may be, I cannot resist blowing bubbles with soap.

To be fair, this is not just any soap. For some reason, this Biore face wash can't help but be the bubbliest soap you've ever had the pleasure of lathering. I found this out while washing my face and merely breathing...and thus creating a ridiculous soap bubble. Ever since, it's been impossible to get through my morning routine without blowing at least one soapy circle. And there I was, taking a depressed-shower, and fighting the urge to blow a bubble. I lost.

I guess as bad as I feel, there will always be that part of me that takes pleasure in the littlest of things. It's the hint of optimism that won't leave my pessimism alone. It's one of the reason I identify myself as an Optimistic Pessismist. Bad shit's gonna happen - but, oh, what if it didn't?!

Monday, March 2, 2009

The sky is falling, DC, the sky is falling!

By now, I've become accustomed to a certain amount of fear-mongering in my nightly news broadcast. It's the trendiest trend in news teasers and usually goes a little something like-a this:
"Tonight, at 5: is your pet killing your children? Tune in to find out, only on Channel 7."
" Could you contract a rare, incurable disease from fabric softener? Channel 2 has the answer, tonight at 6."

Ridiculous, of course, but I imagine it's a real ratings-booster or these topics would be a thing of the past. It's a shame that I've gotten used to news anchors trying to give me goosebumps, but it's more shameful that reporters seem to have misplaced their journalistic integrity (note: it's always in the last place you look).

Part of me wants to launch into a rant on the 24-hour news cycle, but I have to restrain myself. Perhaps another day. This post is about the blatant, enthusiastic, and - most importantly - mostly erroneous over-reporting committed by the most hated of all newscasters......the weatherperson.

My dad has never met a weatherman he likes. He's switched allegiances from NBC to CBS and back many a time just because he hates "that smiling asshole." Well, they're all smiling assholes, Dad. It's probably in the job description.

Living in the DC-metro area has added a whole new level of distaste for me, though. The weather people here cannot get over the fact that, gasp!, there is weather! And it's different, like, every day. They really shine, though, when there is a threat of extreme conditions. Take yesterday, for example.

My roommate informed me at about 2pm that our area was expecting 6-8 inches of snow. For DC, that's a huge deal since there are probably 6 plows in the entire DC-metro area (and maybe 4 people who know how to operate them). While watching TV last night, every. single. commercial break had a teaser urging me to watch the nightly news broadcast for the latest on this impending storm.

My first thought? SNOW DAY! Even though I did nothing (and I mean nothing) on Sunday, the chance not do anything again was intoxicating. And every single teaser and report was sending that same, subliminal message: "You are gonna get to stay home tomorrow. Break out the hot cocoa and marshmallows!"

Thankfully, I've been down here long enough to realize that the chance of any real snow fall was slim, no matter how many times Smiley McStormChaser informed me that the chance of precipitation over 4 inches was "100%." So I went to bed fully prepared for work on Monday, even though I was dreaming of snow angels.

Surprisingly, a good three inches of powder had accumulated when I woke up. But sure enough, when I called the emergency hotline for my office this morning, we were open. If I still lived in Boston, I wouldn't have even bothered to call anyone at my office; I would have just grumbled a little and gone out to my car to defrost the windshield. In the Northeast, weather is weather. It's gonna happen every day, and so is your commute. But in DC, weather is a phenomenom and should not be reckoned with. Average snowfall in this area is 17" but it doesn't ever come all at once....even though the weather reporters really want you to think it will next time.