Wednesday, May 27, 2009

disneyland and wedding plans

on saturday, luke and i journeyed to disneyland with my mom and dad and sam and clay, which is really something considering luke's dislike of disneyland and my dislike of huge, mobbing crowds.  and it was memorial day weekend, so it was even more mobby than usual.  that said, we had an amazingly fun time.  we stayed together as a family unit for the entire day (as in, no one got frustrated and stormed off, with the exception of the 20 minutes sam spent at a shooting gallery in lieu of accompanying us on the pinocchio ride).  we all just genuinely enjoyed spending time together so that was fab.  we're also all very snarky and evil and spent most of the time we weren't picking on each other picking on the other people around us.

plus, i got to experience the tiki room for the first time in all my disneyland years.

here's one of the instant classics:
i'll upload more later when i'm 1) not so tired and 2) likely to have more patience (working with kids is exhausting).

in other news, i'm in full wedding planning mode.  we spent memorial day at home with my family and my grandparents and it was then that i learned that my grandpa doesn't want any fool pool-covering company coming near his pool with plexi-glass and steel-reinforcements.  and, that major blow to the wedding-in-the-grandparents'-backyard plan notwithstanding, i think it's a little too much responsibility and pressure to bestow upon close family just before i get married.  thus, i'm in the market for a wide open meadow-y locale in which to host the wedding.  i would be supremely stressed about the destruction of our location plans were it not for the very pleasant fact that i've found our photographer.  since pretty much the very day i listed myself as "engaged" on facebook, little advertisements about photographers have danced around the right side of my profile and once, a few months back, i was tempted into clicking on one.  as it turns out, i found marianne, whose photos are gorgeous and who, i learned after meeting with her today, is definitely someone i'd definitely feel comfortable hamming it up in front of.*  she hasn't even taken any pictures of me and i'm already singing her praises.

see?  it's not all about sarcasm with me.

*i am also quite comfortable ending sentences with prepositions.

Thursday, May 14, 2009

delightfully wacky

recently, i've discovered some very interesting and hilarious websites that are my smart-ass replacements for all the total shit celebrity trash i was feeding myself for months and months back when i was a card-carrying member of the "perez hilton train wreck" club.  the new websites are:, which i love, of course, because it's packed with snarky, evil messages people have left for all those who have done them wrong (i'm learning lots and will use it all to my advantage when i finally find the time to write my parking ticket complaint letter); and, which isn't as snarky but is often hilarious; and, which isn't exactly new to my rotation, but fits nicely into the above category.  this websites, along with the copy of "mortified" i just got in the mail, have planted a seed in my brain: i need to think up a new blog that would allow me to collect fabulous, creative, hysterical information from around the world and share it with people.  i absolutely adore the idea of setting up a theme, collecting photos or quotes and displaying them.  maybe it taps directly into my intense need to be a voyeur (which, incidentally, is why i loved paparazzi photos for such a long time).  whatever the reason for my desire to do this, i suddenly feel that i must.  sadly, though, my only idea as of right now is to start a collection of "vacation photos from afar,"* which i tend to think only i consider hilarious.

i'll have to keep working on it.

*my love for the insanity that is the widescreen tourist photo was born after my family's trip to chicago and springfield, missouri last summer, when my mother handed me a gigantic stack of pictures she'd taken with disposable cameras and had developed in doubles so that i could have copies.  nearly half of the hundreds of pictures she took were, i kid you not, of me or my brother or my dad from what appears to be two miles away, as we inspect lincoln's outhouse or pose in front of chicago's field museum.  these photos, and how delightfully bizarre they are, struck a cord with me.  obviously.  (just try to find me in the big picture up there that you thought was all tree and shanty house.)

Monday, May 11, 2009


as much as i enjoy having a blog on which to rant about all the supposed insanity and injustice i experience in my life, i'm not actually a giant demon.  i think i roll with the punches much, much better than some people i know.  so, when i do get really aggravated, like truly enraged, i feel like it must really be justified (because i am the personification of justice itself, apparently).  anyway, today i'm riding the aggravation train because i got a parking ticket this afternoon and something about set me off.  to wit:

i deserved the ticket.  i didn't properly read the signs and i parked in a permit-only zone on my way to take the little boy i babysit to see his allergist.  so, my fault.  however, when i opened up the ticket's envelope, i was met with smears of tomato sauce and pieces of burnt cheese, not unlike the stuff someone would leave behind when eating a slice of pizza.  therefore, unless someone walking down a fully residential street in santa monica, eating a mid-day slice of pizza, saw the ticket on my windshield and decided to open it up and eat over it, only to replace it perfectly under my wiper, the guy who issued me the ticket was the one eating and unwittingly left me some scraps.  this really, really upsets me for two reasons:  1) as i've mentioned many times, i'm a hypochondriac, raised by the best, and have absolutely no desire to have to handle someone's leftover food (food that, for all i know, could have actually fallen out of said person's mouth), and 2) my number one pet peeve could be called "failure to realize that there are other people in the universe who do not want to be involved in your personal business."*  number 2 is perhaps very much related to number 1.

so, i've decided to take a page out of my great-aunt carole's handbook and write a letter to the city.  i know, i know, this seems insane.  and maybe it is, but i'm enjoying the prospect too much to stop now.  thus far in my note, i've described the situation and mentioned that i'm usually too easy-going to write a complaint, blah, blah, blah.  the ending is my favorite and i wanted to share it here:

"i have brothers and i work with kids, so i'm not easy to shock.  that said, when i receive paperwork from the city, i expect, at the very least, that it will be sanitary.  i feel so strongly that official paperwork should arrive in good condition that despite being very hungry, i'm waiting to eat with my hands until after i postmark this letter."


*this pet peeve can be extended to include: flipping one's hair onto surrounding strangers in lecture halls or public transportation, having loud cell phone conversations, playing your terrible music way too loud (thank you, girl upstairs!), spitting on the sidewalk, coughing/sneezing without covering your face, smacking your food/gum and now, eating like a slob whilst you issue a government form.

Thursday, May 7, 2009


i'm fully aware that it's "only" 10:30 pm, but i still feel slightly-to-moderately rebellious for being up this late.  i've been investigating various wedding details, despite the fact that 1) my own wedding is still (almost) exactly one year away and 2) i spent (almost) exactly one full year being engaged without wanting to discuss even the engagement for fear of judgment from people about how young i am and how my numerical age means i have no idea how to make intelligent decisions about my life.  (agh!)  however, i shouldn't harp on and on about how uncomfortable the world made me for the first half of this being engaged thing because now my wedding mania has blossomed and is in full swing.  i'm so excited about planning this party that i don't care at all what anyone else thinks about it - and, also, i think i've realized that no one has really been anything but supportive this entire time.  i've had my face in a wedding magazine (when i'm not busy working or working or working) for the past couple of weeks and i think i've narrowed down what i want for the seating, the dress, the lighting, the flowers, the centerpieces and the invitations, which is impressive considering that a month ago i'd never really truly thought about any of those things.  luke and i have known for a while where we want to have the wedding ( my grandparents' house, with the ceremony in their pretty little gazebo), who we want to officiate (...helllllo, joel), and the basic color scheme (lavender, white and green - nature-y).  but, i've lived in terrible fear of cracking the spines on bridal books and magazines to actually make decisions because i'd heard horror stories and am not the kind of person who gets off on spending tons and tons of money on myself.  i've learned, though, that much like most things in life, one's wedding can be exactly what they make of it, so i'm now insanely determined, come hell or high water, to sketch out and bring to life a cozy, beautiful, delightfully fun wedding that is less about frills and money and showing off and more about family and celebrating and togetherness, which i suppose weddings are meant to be about in the first place.  

tonight, i decided on lavender and sage set in mason jars as the centerpieces (after spying on someone else's bridal party bouquets) and i believe i have a general idea what i want the invites to look like.  the wedding is a year away tomorrow and so i realize this might all be a little preemptive.  however, i figure if i shake out what i want early enough, i'll have plenty of time to fiddle around and change my mind and panic in order to arrive at the correct decision eventually.

apparently, i'm going to apply my college finals study plan* to every other stressful event for the rest of my life.

*and for those of you who are not andy and did not live with me through many, many exam nightmares, this means that i will prep far in advance in order to relieve myself of last minute nervous breakdowns, only to then have a nervous breakdown about why i have no last minute preparations.  it's a very sick and very unnecessary cycle, but perhaps that is the story of my life.

Monday, May 4, 2009


i'm sure i've mentioned this (and, regardless, if you're reading this blog, you are most likely know my mother and are very familiar with her particular quirks), but just so that we are all on the same page, my mom is a gigantic hypochondriac.  gigantic.  i hypothesize she lives in fear of any and all possible dangers because she came of age in the mid-eighties, when AIDS was first discovered as the horrific wasting illness we now know all about.  she lost a few close college friends to the disease and i think after experiencing the AIDS hysteria of 1985, she decided to be hyper-protective of her children.  she saw people she cared about die from something terrible that they contracted mysteriously (or so she thought at the time) and i don't think that panic really ever went away.  we were told not to hug our grandparents when they had the sniffles and we all wore thick-soled water shoes into the ocean until we were well into our teens (lest we step on an errant hypodermic needle - her fear of AIDS has never gone away, it's just been channeled into the complete avoidance of any object that could infect us).  i'm still afraid of people with colds.  like, actually afraid.  and, as a kid, it used to make me crazy.  i spent a good deal of time pestering her and berating her and refusing to wear my water shoes.  now, though, as i've gotten older (and earned a B.A. in psychology), i can understand where her fear comes from.

the point of my going into all of this is that my mother has loved all the swine flu hype.  she's chilled out a lot recently, but she still can't handle talk of global pandemics.  so, imagine my horror when i learned that they closed the high school i graduated from, the high school my brother will attend and where my mother works, because a student tested positive for the dreaded H1N1*.  i haven't talked to her yet, but i can imagine she isn't too pleased to know that this thing that all the news stations have been screaming about for days has infiltrated our little town and wiggled its way into her workplace.

*thanks, andy.  can i get my neuroscience Ph.D now?  :)

Sunday, May 3, 2009

pike paperbacks

last week, i had two more cavities filled and i swear to god they will be the last ones i ever have.  i will be a fluoride queen for the rest of my life and i will eat only lettuce and drink only water if it comes down to it because this tooth craziness is really making me feel disgusting.  currently, one of the fillings gets a little upset when i crack down on chips or candies and while i'm subconsciously nervous about not having everything totally locked down and pain-free and obviously perfect, i'm not too upset that i now have a built-in diet plan.  i can't eat chips and candy and crap if it's physically painful!  (my grandpa tells me that the offending tooth should settle down soon.)

in other news, i've been taking advantage of the communal book/video libraries at all the various places i work (read: in the teacher's lounge at the school and in the break room at the tar pits) and am now the proud renter of "bonnie and clyde," "philadelphia," and the first season of "six feet under" (all things i've wanted to see forever) and a worn-out copy of a christopher pike young adult novel - the promise of reading it is almost too much for me to handle.  i was first introduced to christopher pike's cheese-tacular teen horror novels when i was about eleven or twelve, volunteering at a table at the local library one summer.  when i wasn't busy handing out cheap plastic prizes to tinier children who completed their summer reading logs, i was trolling the young adult section (conveniently close to my table) and picking out the most scandalous books i could find.  at twelve, books like "go ask alice" and the entire christopher pike collection fit the bill quite nicely.  so, now, as a near-adult, i'm super excited to revisit the thrills i experienced as a preteen as i snuck home a small pike paperback and spent the night reading about high schoolers who found themselves trapped in malls with psychopaths or in tutoring groups with murderers.  a-mazing.