Monday, January 31, 2011


after graduating from college in 2008, i didn't really work for about four months.  i putzed around, feeling like a total loser, working at a dead-end, although pretty awesome, editorial internship, and eventually "landing" (as if it were a huge coup) a job at a high-end baby boutique (where i learned all about $80 cashmere onesies and culver city douche bags).  after about two months of selling little giraffe blankets to tori spelling and mark wahlberg, i took a leave of absence to raise kittens, thinking it would pull me out of my misery.  in actuality, it simply made me more insane.

so, my unemployment/dissatisfied employment track record is pretty grim.  as lazy and contrary as i am, i really do function best when i'm crazy busy.  i whined a lot when i was working 10 hour days at the dig and going to school and taking osteology and omg i wanted to die, but secretly, inside, i was functioning at prime levels.  i'm notorious for packing my schedule so full i double book and loving it.  (don't try to make plans with me.  ever.)  thus, only having the commitment of night classes twice a week is freaking me out.

granted, i love having time at home.  luke's not working regular hours at the moment, so he's home with me, which is amazing.  we've been making dinners, keeping the house together, having movie marathons and trying to get the cats to love us again, despite the fact that they want to resent us for the rest of their lives for bringing a dog into the house (i've been baiting them with lots of delicious people foods, which appears to be working).  i've also been getting ahead in my reading for school and dreaming up lots of crafting empire plans that will never be realized because i'll never have the money to invest in them.  and, i've sworn not to lose my gourd and adopt any more animals.  really.  i got an email two days ago about a beautiful homeless orange tabby and i ignored it.  i'm getting stronger.

still, all in all, i would trade the endless summer for a moderately fulfilling job that at least made me feel like wasting hours doing bullshit was worth something (even if it's only $10 an hour).

Sunday, January 30, 2011

camera phone photos of disposable camera pictures (or, "my aunt laurie is going to kill me")

a couple months ago, i posted a little something about how my mother (for the approximately ten zillionth time in my life) talked me into going to a crazy event with her.  (it can be found here.)  this time, it wasn't a bahai'i feast or a bunco tournament or a politician's brunch.  this time, it was a ladies tea, sponsored by a women's charity no one in my family has anything to do with.  anyway, luke and i went home last night and i was able to take some super terrible photos on my phone of the photos my mom had taken with a disposable camera (despite the fact that she has a perfectly fine digital camera she can't figure out how to use).

so, drumroll please, here they are.  i'm mostly just posting them so you fools will believe i truly met kathryn joosten, because i know you didn't think it was possible.

here's us at our table, decorated in pink fabric roses.  apparently last year, my mom went all out for her table, creating a day of the dead spectacular that didn't win any prizes.  she was very upset about this all year and decided to do the absolute bare minimum this year (as evidenced above).  because my entire family is made up of sarcastic, evil demons, when it came time to "vote" (with dollars)  for the best table, my grandma, my aunt and i scraped together $17 and our table won third place.  my mom got a ribbon.  this is partly why that day was so amazing.

this is me with kathryn joosten.  suck it, haters.

this is why my aunt laurie might kill me.  it's also a good depiction of the early morning mimosas we all threw back and the hours we spent hovering around the silent auction table, preventing anyone from outbidding us.

which leads me to this:
look at all the stuff i won!  it's not pictured, sadly, but i also won, in a raffle, an awesome turquoise pendant that apparently was "very old" and "storied," according to the random stranger who stopped me in the banquet hall lobby to discuss it with me.  also not pictured is all the loot the rest of my family won.  just trust me.  we were all winners.

all in all, i think the bunch of us made out pretty well, considering we didn't know a single person in the room and were there simply in support of my mother, who was there simply because she can't say no to anyone who asks her to take their place doing something insane.

at least we all know where i get it from.

when i was in college, i didn't have a lot of money.  and, i lived off campus and walked by an urban outfitters every day on my way to class.  thus, most of my wardrobe consisted of items purchased off the clearance rack at urban.  this was bad because the stuff on super sale at that store is on or around 100% more insane than the already insane full priced items.  therefore, i was stuck with a bunch of ill-fitting patterned crap that makes me feel like i pulled a jessica simpson all four years of school.  i just looked through my old albums and it's true.  i was jessica, blissfully unaware of how horribly unflattering all my clothing was until photos were taken and it was too late.

(by the by, one can only get away with wearing what is essentially a glorified bag on the top half of one's body if one has 0% body fat or if one is male.  otherwise, it's just cruel.)

Saturday, January 29, 2011

the jig is up

taking the cats to the vet was even more traumatic than i imagined, so that was great.  i successfully forced abe into his carrier, but then huck knew the jig was up and spent the next five minutes hiding under furniture and hissing at us furiously when we tried to pry him out.  we ended up taking the two of them separately, tacking huck's appointment onto the dog's weekly mange shot (did i mention here that the puppy had mange?  if not, i just did.  i loved finding that out because mange is just the dog form of scabies, which is disgusting.  it's gone, now, thank god).

i've been sending out my resume (mostly to administrative jobs, hoping that i won't have to resort to retail) full-force this week and have gotten two responses.  one in broken english asking me to set up a money transfer before i start running errands (which, btw, was not the job description that got me to apply) and the other demanded i send in a full credit report before they scheduled an interview.  so, i guess i've essentially gotten no responses.  the worst part of the job search is knowing that i'm qualified to do practically anything short of brain surgery.  i have tons of varied experiences, two degrees from UCLA and am working on a master's.  i can file papers, guys.  really, i can.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

ulcers. everywhere.

current status: i am no longer content to wallow in my jobless misery because holy hell, bills are due next week and i haven't worked in two weeks.  granted, luke and i have a savings account and i suppose your savings are allowed to bail you out when you get kicked in the ass by the unforeseen, but i really hate using that money for general life nonsense.  ideally, it would remain untouched until it was time for us to buy a house or something.

i've said it seventeen million times and i'll say it again: why didn't i just major in business or communications at ucla?  i love what i'm studying in grad school, but i'm really, really, really tired of trying to make things work monetarily while slowly clawing my way to my future career.  

in other news, i have to take the cats in to get their vaccinations updated today and since making the appointment two days ago, i think i've grown an ulcer about it.  perhaps this is the source of all my stress (as evidenced above).  the last time i took the cats to the vet was march 2009, when they were babies, and it was traumatic enough that i just keep them inside for two years so that i wouldn't have to worry about taking them back.  then, in trying to transport them from the apartment to this house, i learned that there is practically no way to get them safely and calmly into their carrier, so i'm super excited to attempt that again in an hour.  they desperately need to go, though, because we're the proud new owners of a window-insert cat door and i suppose i'd rather have this one morning of insanity than let them both get rabies from a squirrel.

Monday, January 24, 2011


oh, bridalplasty. of all the tragic crap on tv, this show represents best of all why the united states is behind essentially the entire world in math and science. obviously, we're all idiots.

at first, i swore i wouldn't watch it. i would never do such a thing. i'm in grad school. i'm too well-read. then, in a terrible confluence of convenience* and genetics**, i did it. i watched. and i can safely say that there is nothing redeeming about it. there are many shows on tv that serve to humiliate their protagonists (i used to be fat, losing it with jillian michaels, supernanny and every episode of i didn't know i was pregnant, to name a few), but at least you get the sense that there is an actual, albeit thinly veiled, moral to those stories (even if it's something like "letting your children play with machetes is a no-no" or "your back pain may be a baby"). bridalplasty is simply 45 minutes of hideous female stereotyping, beauty standard perpetuation and general idiocy. the women have decided to sacrifice their physical health (and ultimately, their pride) to act like catty bitches for an entire season in order to win a plastic surgery makeover and a "dream wedding."

having just planned a wedding, i can understand the allure of having someone pay for that shit for you. i can even understand the desire to look your best. what i don't get is showcasing on tv twenty-something women who are so riddled with self-esteem issues and self-hate that they're willing to offer their bodies up to the creepiest plastic surgeon in reality tv history after they win inane contests. any show that provides weekly nose jobs to engaged women who are convinced they aren't attractive enough (despite the fact that they have, by definition, found men who love them as they are) and then has them prance back to the mansion after their surgeries to stay in the twee-ly decorated "recovery" room is seriously, seriously unfortunate.

the best (worst?) part, however, is that the host is shanna moakler, best known for her marriage to travis barker of blink 182. a marriage that ended. so, the person at the helm of this shipwreck, the spokesperson for being "the perfect bride," is someone whose dream wedding ended in a failed marriage. ouchies.

*we're paying for dvr now, and somehow, it seems less disgusting to watch something whenever you want than to wait to watch it live.

**my mother, who is one of the smartest people i know, is obsessed with tabloids. obsessed. it's in my blood. this is my excuse.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

no money, mo' problems

the plague has lifted! i still have what medical websites call a "productive cough," which is the polite way of saying i'm hacking up mucus, but other than that, i'm cured. luke's actually 100% better, which is good i guess, but also frustrating, because why me with the cough? anyway, things have gone back to normal. in fact, things are better than normal, considering luke and i cleaned the house yesterday and have managed to keep it spotless for an entire 24 hours, despite the fact that we made a huge dinner last night. get this: i did the dishes right after they were used, so no epic mess to follow me around for three days. yipee!

also, my job is over. the excavation was unceremoniously halted last friday, due to complications associated with something i like to call "shit storm." apparently, the movers and shakers are making a decision today as to whether we can continue, but right now, i'd just like to sit in my misery and complain about how sad it is that the first time in my life i landed a job that is actually vital experience for my future career, it has vanished into bureaucratic thin air. blarg.

also also, the unseasonably warm weather (despite our perma-sun here in southern california, 90* in january can still be termed "unseasonable") has made me desperate for a charcoal grill and patio furniture. i need summertime gatherings and grilled veggies. is that too much to ask? apparently, yes, as my job is MIA and luke just started the business and things here are riding the poverty line here at the moment. :(

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

the plague!

on friday, i was heading home from a week of excavating when i coughed a tiny cough. very, very tiny and seemingly innocuous. i thought to myself that perhaps i'd inhaled some dirt. no big deal.

um, no. it turned out to be a pretty big fricking deal. by saturday morning, i had a raging fever and couldn't move. by saturday night, i was delirious and singing nursery rhymes in my sleep (yes, luke heard me, and no, i don't know how he didn't smother me in horror). by monday, i was still so achey that i couldn't walk around and was taking approximately three to four hot baths a day. it is now wednesday and it's safe to say this is the first day i feel legitimately better. granted, i still have my hacking cough and running nose, but aside from those comparatively minor symptoms, i've normalized. unfortunately, i infected luke, who is now in the "monday" stage of the disease, meaning he's where i was two days ago: fever-y, achey, miserable and totally cognizant of the fact that he's already been all those things for longer than he'd like to have been.

whatever this was was a doozy and i can say that safely now because i've seen luke sick with it. i am a notoriously horrible sick person - i whine and complain and even once in COLLEGE called my mommy crying because my fever of 104* hurt so badly. luke, on the other hand, cleaned out the garage on his first day of this illness, so he's kinda a badass. now, seeing how laid out he is, i know this thing means business. and that's why i don't feel bad about essentially hiding in the house for five days. if nothing else, i'm not infecting anyone else, and i feel ok about that.

Saturday, January 1, 2011

one one one one!

the holidays were surprisingly fabulous, considering they completely snuck up on us and we weren't able to do any of the wonderful party planning we'd dreamed about. we spent christmas eve with my jewish grandparents (complete with chinese food) and christmas day with my fam. i got a new phone to replace the one the dog destroyed and i can now access the internet from anywhere, which is exciting but probably not good. luke is still massively in love with the puppy (as am i) and now that things have calmed down around here, we're considering adopting her sister, who is still at the rescue. everyone thinks we're insane, and rightly so i'm sure, but stirring up craziness just when things are looking stable and routine is kinda our m.o. so just get used to it, people. finally, last night was a gorge-fest at our friends' massive duplex near echo park. i think from 7 pm to 2 am i had two beers, three glasses of wine, a bottle of sparkling water, two slices of cake, some pure butter scottish shortbread cookies, two brownies and about my weight in butternut squash risotto and homemade bread. i purposely listed all that out in an attempt to shame myself into being less disgusting from here on out. new year's resolution! at the party, i also totally sucked at charades and forced everyone to watch "kittens inspired by kittens," which of course was the highlight.

in other news, it's been really freezy here lately. granted, a temperature hovering around 40 degrees isn't cold for people who live in places with legitimate seasons, but for this california girl, holy canoli. the worst part of this cold snap is that i'm out at 6:30 in the morning every day excavating in a muddy trench.* meaning: after bailing rain water out of holes for a frigid hour each morning, i'm surprised i'm still in moderately good health.

*just fyi: last night was the first time in the history of my interest in forensic anthropology that my work was actually a welcome topic over a dinner table. exciting!