Thursday, August 31, 2006

All the things I didn't say.

I was talking with a guy friend today about women being "sexual gatekeepers" and who REALLY makes the decisions in relationships about when, where and how sex will take place. During this conversation he told me some opinions about how "normal" girls act, and since he's told me in the past that I'm "weird" I commented that I must be weird because a lot of what he was saying didn't make any sense to me or ring true in my life.

He told me that he thinks of me as weird in a "good way," unique and sort of eccentric. I thought about it on my way home and it occurred to me that he was giving me what he perceives of as a compliment and in the past I would have been disappointed that he hadn't said "you're exactly like every other girl I know only BETTER!" I am glad that it's getting easier to be me, which certainly is...uh...unique, and that at least on occasion there are people in my life who think that "me" is interesting.

I settled my first claim today, all by myself. It was kinda nervewracking, if I do say so myself.

In other news, there is no other news because it's the first day I've been home before 8pm in probably a week, and I'm already falling asleep - so I guess I'm going to vegetate in front of the tube for a while and then go to bed early. Aren't I exciting?

Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Workin' in the coal mine...

Today was rough. Rough. A client hates me, witnesses are eluding me (and it's a special kind of eluding when people can escape to the Bering Sea on a fishing vessel to get away from you), and my boss was teasing me about something that kind of hurt my feelings and made me feel awkward (although she's the nicest person on the planet and clearly didn't mean anything mean). I'm confused and frustrated with billing, I feel guilty about how long it takes me to do stuff and since I'm not in a firm no one is checking my stuff and down-grading my billables because I'm new, so I'm kind of policing myself which means I have to work twice as hard since I'm shaving down my own billables. I am stressed that I will never have my own clients who will actually like me and won't just be in love only with everyone else in the office. And, they hired someone else to come in part-time starting in a couple of weeks, and I wonder how that will effect my ability to bill and the level of work I'll have. Plus, she used to work there before and so she already knows everyone and knows what's going on, which freaks me out. And there's not even a place for her to sit. If she gets the corner office with the view I'm going to go totally nuts.

Basically, I'm stressed out. Really, really stressed out. I still love my job, but I'm a stranger in a strange land and I don't understand even the simplest things and it's just so frustrating and nerve-wracking. I did go to a social thing after work tonight with one of my bosses and it was really fun and I met lots of neat people, so that was cool, but now I'm home and in full-on worry mode. Sigh.

Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Suggestions?

OK, I am finding it very difficult to do much except work. How do you people, especially those with long hours/billables, fit in the gym? Do you get up at 5am? Do you go at night, no matter how late you get home? How do you plan meals and stuff without just eating out constantly?

Feel free to write about this on your own blogs and link back, or leave comments, but I really want to know how people keep some balance in their lives when they are working tons and stressed out and still wanting to spend time with friends and stuff.

I would say I'm working approximately 50-60 hours a week right now, and when I get home I'm exhausted, and I am having a really hard time getting up early when I don't get to bed until 11 or 12 because I have so much to do when I get home (which was 9 last night, and 9:30 tonight, after work engagement last night/going away party for a friend tonight).

I'm tired, but I don't particularly want to be out of shape AND tired, and would likely be LESS tired if I could get on a regular gym schedule. Work is INSANE though, and stressful, and just...well...crazy.

Monday, August 28, 2006

All together now..."AWWWWWWWWWWWWW"

So, I was emailing back and forth with the recent date guy today. He's going out of town for a couple of weeks on a business trip, and he asked me what year my car is. I told him and said "why do you want to know?" (But not in a snotty way...ed.) He said he was ordering new brake parts for my car because it shudders really bad when you hit the brakes and apparently he knows with his man-sense that this is related to some kind of a warped brake thingiemajigger, and so when he comes back he's going to fix it for me. He had said this before but I thought he was just, you know, saying it (Because, in my experience, men do that quite often).

Yeah, he's pretty much a nice guy. I mean, he finds out today he has to be out of town for two weeks and still stops in the middle of his day and orders parts for my car.

Scandalous!

I got to work this morning and my boss informed me I would be leaving work at noon to go play in a bowling tournament, then attending a cocktail hour/dinner thingie. The bowling alley was relatively close to home, and since we finished early, I came home for a quick fix of Dr. Phil before heading to the cocktail party.

I got two business cards at the bowling tournament, I'm a networking maniac!

Anyway, I guess I should relax for two minutes before it's tme to leave. I was so nervous just showing up to this thing today not knowing anyone and without either of my bosses, but I think it went OK. I'm mentally exhausted though.

Sunday, August 27, 2006

Is it Sunday already?

This weekend has been so busy!!!

First, on Friday I went on a date to see Beerfest. Gotta love a guy who appreciates that I consider this movie to be totally appropriate date fare, plus there are lots of gratuitous boobie shots, so I'm sure he didn't mind. It didn't even hold a candle to Super Troopers - the standard by which I judge all supposedly funny movies, but it was funny in a few parts.

Yesterday I went to this really wonderful outlet mall with my friend. I spent tons of money and got some really cute stuff, which I needed because I'm still trying to lose my bar exam weight and I can't fit into any of my stupid clothes.

Last night we went out to our fave local bar to welcome Ex-Roomie back into town. I have to admit that I had quite a few beers and would randomly just walk up to her and hug her and be like "Thank GOD you're back!" It's good to have the whole group back together again.

Today I am going to see The Devil Wears Prada with my good friend, and then the Ex-Roomie and I are going to our other good friend's house to watch the Emmy's. The Emmy friend is moving next week so this is probably the last chance I'll have to hang out with her for awhile, although I will be traveling to her new city for work in December, so I'm sure we'll get together then.

And, lastly, the date. I am trying to learn my lesson about talking about stuff like that on here, but it went OK. This guy, as I've said before, it basically the nicest guy I have ever been on a date with. So, no matter what happens, it was nice to go out a couple of times this weekend with someone who is very nice, and I realize (perhaps more than anyone else) that it is absolutely sick and twisted to have dating issues related to someone being nice to you and not knowing how to deal with it or turn it into something you can wrap your brain around.

Drunk blogging

Beer DOES go with cupcakes.

Yessir it does!

I went on a date last night, it was fun. I drank WAY too much this whole weekend, but I had alotta fun. I heart cupcakes. And beer.

Thursday, August 24, 2006

I'm a golfer!

Or, well, not at all really.

I can sum up my golf tournament experience today in one story.

My foursome won an award. It consists of a golf ball wearing a life jacket.

Remember when?

Remember when I had a parking spot at my own apartment complex because I pay to live here? Yeah, me too. Apparently now when I come home at 1am I am expected to park 6 blocks away and hoof it here in my high heels and awesome dress and semi-boozy-ness. Assholes. I sweet-talked the security guy into letting me park in the reserved parking though...just for tonight. Apparently they are paving one of the parking lots so everyone is going nuts. Assholes.

Also, remember the guy who was super-duper nice? We had drinks tonight. Maybe without the horrible bar exam hanging over my head I'm a little more able to at least consider the possibilities. I heart possibilities.

I downloaded the new Justin Timberlake song. I am not ashamed. I have billed enough hours this month to get a massive bonus in September already. New shoes or jewelry...what a choice.

Nice talk with one of the boss ladies today...I think it's good to know I'm doing well and they are going to be letting me have even more responsibility and stuff as time goes on. Being validated is good.

Tomorrow (well, later today) I play in my first work-related Schmoozefest Golf Tournament...oh man, it's gonna be ugly. I at least have the drinking and schmoozing part down though.

Off to bed..it's after 1 and I promised the security guard I'd be out of the spot he gave me no later than 8, plus I need to work before I have to leave for the golf tournament. Here's to wishing I don't do anything TOO embarrassing...yeah right.

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

Happy Gnocchi

Lately I cannot get enough gnocchi, and I don't know why. I mean, obviously, the reason why is that it's gooooooooooooood, but I'm not sure why I've suddenly become crazy about it to the degree that I am.

I still love Mike Rowe. Not as much as I love gnocchi. But that's only because the gnocchi is accessible to me.

I went to the driving range tonight. Shockingly, I still suck at golf. Sigh. And, my boss wants me to play in ANOTHER tournament in October. I might have to suck it up and learn to play for real with lessons and practice and whatnot.

Not much else going on. Billing like a mo-fo and feeling crazy.

Oh yeah, and I almost forgot...a bird flew into our transformer outside our building and so we had no electricity, phone, or email from yesterday afternoon until today around lunchtime. The bird is right under the pole, fried. I can't help but think he got what he deserved considering how hellish my life is without email and internet access.

Sunday, August 20, 2006

I heart shiny things.


I forgot to mention that I have been looking for a ring to buy myself as sort of a "Hey, good job making it through law school" gift. So, I bought one. The shiny parts aren't real, but it's a really nice piece of "costume" jewelry and it's super-fun, so I'm happy. It's being sized now so that I can wear it on my middle finger. Flipping people off never looked so glam!

YAY!

I have GREAT NEWS! Ex-Roomie will be back on Friday after a lengthy post-bar trip to see her family. She told me on the phone tonight that if her boyfriend missed her half as much as I do, she'd be really happy. It'll be great to have the whole gang complete again!

I'm still working on letting myself off the hook for my perceived failures yesterday. Isn't it weird how you are so much harder on yourself than anyone else is? I'm sure my boss won't think I did anything TOO awful, but I really have a hard time not beating myself up. What's so funny is that I NEVER was a perfectionist about law school, and I never cared very much about how well I did...guess I'm just more of a "real-world" kinda girl. When it's a paying client and my job and reputation are at stake, it really means something to me that is very visceral. I love this job, I don't want to ever do anything that will screw it up.

Dreams

I fell asleep so early last night...happy after two glasses of wine, but clearly with the events of the day rattling around in my subconscious. I dreamed last night about the recorded statement I took from the claimant, and all the things I did "wrong" all day. It's just as bad as the damn bar exam...geez!

Then, at 8am my phone rang with someone needing information from me in connection with where I took the guy for treatment yesterday and stuff...so, now I'm up. It's gorgeous outside so I guess I should open up the windows and get busy on some cleaning, and possibly hit the gym. I really should go to the driving range since I have that golf tournament on Thursday, but oh well...not sure if I'll make it or not. Sigh. I'm trying not to think about how ugly the whole golf thing is going to be, I hope there's alot of beer.

Saturday, August 19, 2006

Holy Shit. I made decisions. And decided things. Holy SHIT!

Holy shit people. Today my boss sent me out ALONE to do my first "real work thing." I went out to a vessel, retrieved an injured person, took him for emergency treatment and arranged for him to be flown back to his home (in another state) since he needs surgery (possibly) and extensive treatment.

For people who have Bloglines, you'll notice I've edited this post. I'm just too weirded out about posting about work...so, can't go there. For those of you who didn't see the original, suffice it to say that today was really, really, really intense and I made alot of big decisions on my own...can only hope I did the right thing and made the right decisions, I think I did the best I could and did the best that can be done for this particular client.

I'm writing up a list of questions of stuff that happened today that I didn't know how to handle, so I can talk to my boss on Monday and try to get some feedback and advice. Today was trial by fire, and it was nuts.

I bought a bottle of wine. I'm going to try to quit panicking and relax. I'm two glasses down and I dare say there's more in my future.

Thursday, August 17, 2006

My job is better than your job.

You know how I know?

Because, today, someone actually said to me: "Man, that's just how it fucking IS out there on the Bering Sea man!"

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

I can't control my heart rate, I've got a cougar on me! *

*Yes, I did see Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby last night. Funny, but the outtakes at the end were probably the best part.

Anyway, I have been SO busy. I'm working probably 10-11 hours a day (billing 8+, which is pretty OK I think). I sincerely wish that I could talk about work because I'm working on tons of really fantastic and interesting cases, but, unfortunately, not so much. Sigh.

Anyway, what have I been up to?

I met Claris on Sunday when she came through town for a rowing competition (her team kicked ass!). She and Lawgeekgurl were nice enough to buy me a keychain with both something pink AND something shiny on it. It was great to meet another blogger on my home turf, as the other ones I've met have all been during my summers in D.C. The gift is awesome too - I put my office keys on it. Thanks!

The other thing I've been watching with something like...umm...let's call it "morbid curiousity" is the blog drama that unfolded over at JMPP's the other day when she outlined her dating criteria and why she's a "quality woman" (to clarify, I started reading her blog at some point on about a once-a-month basis, and I have no idea why...I think because I had an idea she's from the TVPNM...I have yet to figure out why I continue to go back except that sometimes stuff like this happens). I have LOTS of thoughts on this, most of which are more than adequately represented in the comments and the trackbacks (the comments do get pretty abusive towards the end though, FYI). The ensuing drama was heightened when she posted an email exchange she had with one of her many admirers stalkers, and then crowed about her cleverness in using the whole thing to boost her traffic. Once again, comments and trackbacks cover anything I could possibly say on the whole subject.

I guess if I put up a picture I could have admirers and kajillions of men pursuing me too. I mean, shit, I've clearly been doing this all wrong. I'm just as "quality" as JMPP...AND I have a much better education, I love guns and sex just as much, if not more, than her (take that!), AND I have big boobs, better hair, and a soul.

Monday, August 14, 2006

Uplifting

Yeah, that's right...it's my NEW HAIR!! Well, same hair, semi-new color. A little lighter with more highlights. It's sort of a weird pic because I had to hold my hand behind my head to take it, but my hair is long now (shoulder-blade length), so there's ALOT of red hair going on! :)

Sunday, August 13, 2006

You're my brown-eyed girl*

A reader (Jeff) recently left this comment under my post about my family reunion and how it had me thinking about my appearance:

As the father of three daughters, I constantly walk the line between complementing them on their appearance (which I would think encourages them) and not doing so (which presumably places less emphasis on their appearance). They're beautiful, of course, but what to say? Thanks so much for giving me a forum to ask this question where, if someone posts an answer, it will likely be to the point and not sarcastic.

Regular readers will know that my appearance and my weight and my perception of my attractiveness are things that I think about, and write about, fairly often. My good friend Mir emailed me after she saw his comment and said, essentially, “I hope you’re going to address this because it’s a great question” and told me her thoughts, which (I think) mirror mine.

In a nutshell, here’s my answer: Tell your daughters constantly how beautiful you think they are. You don’t have to tell them that they are entitled to special treatment because they’re beautiful, or that they don’t have to use their intellect or natural talents because they’re beautiful, but my personal opinion is that one of the greatest gifts a father can give his daughters is to instill WITHIN them the CERTAIN KNOWLEDGE that they are beautiful, both inside and out. You don’t need to turn them into self-absorbed little twits, or encourage an unhealthy level of concern over their appearances, but I would define “telling them they are beautiful” as “letting them know that they are beautiful people, including physically, and allowing them to be secure in their bodies and physical form whether or not they meet ‘conventional’ ideas of beauty advanced by society, the media, and other persons to whom they are exposed.” **In rereading this post after I wrote it, I realize I'm not sure I mean" tell them they're beautiful" or "tell them what the world says is beautiful doesn't mean anything" or perhaps both, so the post is a little stream-of-consciousness, but I'm going to continue to think about this and see if can come up with a way to articulate it better.**

I’ve written about this subject before, so I’ll try not to retread old ground, but I think this is just such an important subject.

I don’t want to go into my entire family history, except to say that while I was growing up there was A LOT of focus on my weight and appearance. I always felt like my dad was embarrassed to be seen with me because I did not represent him in a way that he approved of or could relate to. My accomplishments were celebrated, but they were celebrated on a FAR grander scale when they were related to weight loss or sports. I always believed that the sum total of my value as a human being related directly to the number of pounds I was currently over the Metropolitan Life Insurance Tables, or the distance I could run without keeling over and dying. The scale in our bathroom took on a life of its own, as did the chart next to it where my weight was tracked with undying regularity and tiny gold stars representing when I did "good." I always want(ed) to know what I weigh(ed) but I was(am) terrified that the result would(will) be “bad” and would(will) somehow deem me unworthy of love and affection that was(is) undeserved for “someone like me,” i.e., fat.

So, sometimes it has seemed as if my entire life has revolved around my weight, my appearance, and my failure to live up to standards set by my dad, the military, society, fashion magazines, clothing sizes, men, etc.

I am 31 years old and there has never been a day in my life that I can remember where I didn’t think about my weight. I can’t remember ever being totally comfortable in my skin or with the way I look. I cringe when I walk by the glass front of a store, or a car window where I’m reflected, or a mirror, but I’m still morbidly fascinated with what I see, comparing it to what I saw the last time I looked (even if it was two seconds ago in the window of the store next door). When I used to run I knew every car on my route that had a window where I looked “good” or “bad.” I have mirrors that make me look “OK” versus “totally huge.” All of my clothes are judged on the degree to which they cling to any part of my body that I don’t want things clinging to. I know every pose and position in bed that will make my body seem “less disgusting” to a sexual partner, but in my heart I know that when a man sleeps with me it's because he's desperate and when he doesn't call back it's because I'm fat and he would be embarrassed to be seen with me in any situtuation other than in total darkness after a night of drinking. Any port in storm, right?

I wish that someone had told me, all the time, that I was beautiful. I wish that I had known that beautiful isn’t what a fashion magazine or society or commercials on TV tells you it is. I wish that there had been an adult male in my life who had told me that I am beautiful because I’m a human being who is special and amazing and smart AND pretty and that any man who didn’t make me feel all of those things about myself isn’t worth my very valuable and precious time. I wish that my dad had told me I was gorgeous to him and that he would beat up anyone who tried to tell me different or made me feel less than that. I wish I had been given a benchmark with which to judge my adult relationships with men. Or, rather, a different benchmark. I wish that I hadn't been taught to EXPECT that my appearance wouldn't measure up and that I was capable of putting both actual and perceived rejection by men into a bucket NOT labeled "The Way I Look."

If I knew I was beautiful I wouldn’t grasp at any male attention that comes my way, no matter what sick and unhealthy and squalid human shell it is contained within. If I had known I was beautiful I wouldn’t have married either one of my husbands…not knowing then, as I do now, that just because someone asks (anything) doesn’t mean you have to (always) say “yes.” If I had known I was beautiful I would have told when someone touched me inappropriately, because I would have known that the attention I was getting was unhealthy and that my body was a valuable and wonderful thing to be treated with dignity and respect, not a vessel of constant betrayal and degradation.

If I knew I was beautiful I might try internet dating again…but after a month of vacillating on whether I was “curvy,” “normal,” or had “a few extra pounds,” I gave up when I read in a man’s ad that he KNEW that “curvy” was a euphemism for fat, and everyone knew that women on the internet did nothing but lie about their weight because they’re a bunch of “fatties” and anyone who wasn’t “slim or slender” need not apply. How can I ever face meeting a legion of men to whom I will be either a liar, a disappointment, or a brief rest stop on their way to finding the (acceptably thin) woman of their dreams?

I would literally sell my soul to be able to look in a mirror without spending an hour debating with myself whether or not I should be “allowed” to wear something (Heavens! What WILL people think!?), or to be able to go out with my friends and not feel like the fat, ugly friend…which I know intellectually that I am not, but which my heart and soul cannot seem to grasp, especially when I look at all my size 6 friends and hear them talking about how they're "so fat" and "gross."

My best friend M recently commented to me, “Did you ever think that people couldn’t tell you hate yourself?” And you know what? Yeah. I thought I was fooling a lot of people by being brash and ballsy and funny to hide a crater of insecurity the size of the Grand Canyon. Now I am trying to catch myself and stop when I find myself being self-deprecating or extremely irrational about my appearance, but, as they say, old habits die hard.

It has taken me years to come even this far in dealing with an issue that is so pervasive in our society, and I KNOW my parents did the absolute best they could. No one abused me. No one told me I was ugly or horrible. People told me I was smart and talented. But the most important man in my life, my hero, told me, both through words and actions, that my worth (partially? wholly?) as a human being was based on my appearance and then led me to believe that I (partially? wholly?) didn’t measure up, and I’m not sure I’ll ever work through that to a degree that allows me to be 100% comfortable with my body and appearance.

So, yes. Tell your daughters they are beautiful. All the time. Until they believe it, and know it, and don’t even have the ability to think any different. One of my law professors described a “habit” as “you would stop there even if the stop sign was missing one day.” That’s how your daughters should feel, that even if one day you’re not there to tell them how beautiful they are, they would still stop, mentally, and just *know* it. I’m sure many people will have different opinions on this issue, and I welcome all of them, but this has been my experience and as an adult I look back on a (overall) very happy childhood and just wish that I had been given the tools to deal with an adult world that is very focused on appearance, especially in women. I don’t have kids, so maybe I don’t know what I’m talking about. But, I was a kid, and in some part of me, I’m still a kid, and I wish my dad would tell me I’m beautiful so I could stop looking in every mirror, store window, and reflection in a man's eyes, wondering if I am and what it means to my future if I’m not.

*One of the happiest memories of my childhood is my dad telling me that Brown Eyed Girl by Van Morrison was about me. I didn't know what the words meant, but I knew it was a song he loved and that I had brown eyes and that it made me feel pretty and that whenever it came on he would sing along and sometimes dance with me. I play it on every jukebox I come across. Every single one. I wrote this whole post without crying, but remembering this made me cry, because that's how powerful it is as a girl to know that your father thinks you are the best thing he ever did.

Saturday, August 12, 2006

Remember students...it's better to play with a group than with yourself.

I went to a going-away party tonight for my friend. She's not actually leaving for a couple of weeks, but it makes me sad to think that this is the beginning of her leaving. Boo!

Anyway, I went by the grocery store because I didn't get dinner and it occurred to me that it's been SO LONG since I just sat home and had a glass of wine and relaxed a little bit. So, I bought a nice chilled bottle of Red Truck White, one of my favorite "everyday" white wines, and I'm sitting here watching Iron Chef America and eating pita chips and drinking the world's largest glass of white wine.

Today I de-cluttered my apartment a bit, it still needs ALOT of work, but I burned scented oil for the first time in probably six months. I hung up clothes that have been on the floor for six weeks, put my duvet cover back on my comforter, and threw away MUCH suspicious looking produce out of my fridge.

Real life is creeping back upon me in fits and starts. I like how it feels.

In other news, I've been thinking alot about the fragility of humans and the human condition. Isn't it amazing that we are able to live at all? Let alone form connections, communicate with each other, and think about our own situations with detachment and insight? God. It's so cool.

Spring Summer End of Summer Cleaning

It is beautiful here today, I mean really gorgeous. I went for a nice long walk with my friend and her son today (he's so cute!), and now I'm home and I'm about to open up all my windows and start making a stab at de-law-school-and-bar-exam-ifying my apartment, which lately looks like an atomic bomb was detonated somewhere in my living room. There's fallout everywhere. I'm also starting to think about the fact that I want to move, and so I want to get my place cleaned up so I can start going through all my stuff and deciding what is and is not going with me to my theoretical new place.

I'm working on a couple of "real" posts...but no time to finish them! I have a going-away party to go to tonight (sad!). My friend got a great job but it's in another city and so we have to say goodbye to her. I'm glad she's going to be happy but I hate to see another person leave.

If I get a good picture reflecting the total awesomeness that is my hair, I'll figure out a way to post it. Maybe THL can draw me some kind of disguise cartoon face on MSPaint...she's pretty handy with it!

My hair looks sooooooooo good.

I'm not saying I've been drinking, but IF I had been drinking, I would probably want to take this opportunity to tell you at 12:05am that (a) my hair looks so freaking good, I swear to God, it's AMAZING...makes me wish I wasn't anonymous so I could put up a picture, and (b) although I am the worst pool player in America, I made a crazy double shot tonight that made me feel like solid gold.

Solid Freaking Gold people!!

Seriously my hair looks so good.

Friday, August 11, 2006

Hair Repair

You'll all be happy to know that I have an appointment tonight for a haircut, color, and highlights. This is my first step (well, technically I've been going to the gym too) towards reversing the damage the bar visited upon my poor, frail, sad body. It's going to cost me some heavy-duty cash, but it's well worth it in the end. Yup.

Thursday, August 10, 2006

Random Observations From My New Life As A Full-Time Adult

1. There is nothing, NOTHING, funnier than a man trying to decide what kind of tampons to buy. Nothing.

2. There is nothing, NOTHING, more terrifying than a client who you have to do work for who only likes one person in the office, and has worked with that person for years, and you are NOT that person. Gulp.

3. My boss signed me up for a golf tournament sponsored by a local law firm who works with us sometimes. This would be awesome if I knew how to golf. Apparently Tiger Woods Golf on the X-box doesn't count as "practice" or "expertise." Who knew?

4. People are idiots and will apparently continue their quest to battle my Mercury Sable when they themselves are driving Yugo's, Ford Focus's, and Chevy Aveo's. Seriously, take your disposable car and get out of my way. God.

5. The one thing creepier than Marie Osmond is dolls designed by Marie Osmond. Or any dolls at all. I hate dolls. I bet you didn't know that about me.

6. I love my job but I'm worried I won't be good at it. I feel stupid all the time, but I guess that's normal. I hate feeling stupid. I think I'm doing a good job so far. They keep letting me come back, so I guess that's a good sign.

7. Frozen lasagna takes WAY too long to cook. I'm hungry now, not in 75 minutes damnit!

8. I love lemon bars. I will make some lemon bars because, guess what? I have NO HOMEWORK tonight, nowhere I have to be, and no one to answer to. Life is good folks.

9. I miss M. She's been away for a little while now for work and I want her to come home soon.

10. Every time, EVERY DAMN TIME, that I stop by the Fred Meyer's near my house, this guy I went on a couple of dates with a long time ago is there. Seriously. Three times in a row now. Does he live there? He needs to take his VW Bus and go do some camping for awhile so I can shop in peace.

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

As my dad would say, "You gotta be ralphing me!"

Seriously. He does say that. No, I do not know where he picked up such a strange exclamation. It seems apropo here though.

Anyway, the point is that I'm watching this 20/20 thing on Medical Mysteries. There's a guy with no eyesight who uses echolocation to get around. But, sadly, that's NOT the most amazing part of the story. The most amazing part is his mom's name.

Wait for it.

Wait for it.

Are you ready?

Aquanetta.

SWEAR. TO. GOD.

Say "welcome to the family!"


Meet my new pink cell phone!
There is a very LooooooooooooooNG and involved story as to how this came to be, and I am FAR too exhausted after two very long days at work to tell it to you. But, suffice it to say that my old phone had problems and the only way to get a new phone was to get a family plan so I could get the second phone free. I acquiesced and now my parents are getting my old phone (thank GOD, they need to get with it...I stood at the airport for an hour on Sunday waiting for my mom to find out if she got a stand-by flight because she had no way to contact my dad if she found out she was getting on the plane...no time to run to the pay phone!), and I got a new pink phone. YAY! My old phone is only a year old, but it shuts off whenever you flip it shut...so annoying. Oh, wait, make that a year and a month old, just past the warranty. Of course. Anyway, bottom line is that me and my new phone are going to be very, very happy together. I just know it.

Tuesday, August 08, 2006

What I learned at my family reunion.

I recently (by which I mean "last weekend") had an opportunity to attend my family reunion. This is interesting (to me) for a couple of reasons. First, I grew up all over the world, moving every couple of years, so I have rarely seen any family outside of my parents and grandparents. My dad's brother visited quite a bit when I was little, but my mom's brother is virtually a stranger to me due to the fact that, while I was growing up, he was experiencing some "bumps" in his life. My mom's brother has two kids, and two stepkids, and I haven't seen any of them in nearly 20 years (my cousins were 18 mos. and 3 y/o at that time). Secondly, I am extremely close to my parents, but, for the reasons above, I am not close to anyone else in my family, including my grandparents or uncles. I always felt like none of my extended family wanted to know me. They didn't make the effort, and I was a kid so I probably shouldn't have been required to make the effort. As a small child I thought we didn't HAVE any relatives, and as an adult, I realize that I have some but haven't been too interested in getting to know people who seemed uninterested in getting to know me.

And then, my mom asked me to go to my family reunion. The reunion was for my mom's father's side of the family. Tragically, my grandfather died when my mom was 19. He was out chopping wood with my dad (her boyfriend at the time), and basically just dropped dead right there in the woods of a heart attack. To hear anyone talk about him, he was apparently a wonderful, kind, and talented man who died way too young after years of suffering from various health problems and not having the resources or education to get them properly treated or understand his role in prevention and care.

On the way to the reunion, my mom told me stories about her dad, and his four brothers and one sister. The boys were all musically talented (as is my mother), and the girl was beautiful but died young of a brain tumor. Her father and uncles would sit in their yard on Saturday nights, around a fire, playing guitars and harmonicas and singing old Glen Campbell and Roger Miller songs, "King of the Road" and "Gentle On My Mind." My mom's uncle even sang for the band at a local dive bar, where he was apparently quite the lothario. Her father wrote songs, and submitted many of them to country music agents, hoping to get one of them recorded.

When we got there, I did not recognize anyone except my mom's brother and his wife. And that's only because they were staying at the same place as us, I have only met him perhaps three or four times in my life before last weekend. Only one of my grandfather's brothers is still alive. As the evening wore on, my uncle, my mom's uncle, and his two sons, all got out their guitars and played old country songs, I even heard some Johnny Horton, which was interesting because I wa raised on him, but I rarely meet people who know of him. It was very touching to get a glimpse of what it would have been like way-back-when.

Anyway, back to what I learned.

Every single person said "You should have known your grandfather! He was such a wonderful man!" I wish I had known him. My dad's father is a nice man, but he was never one to be particularly emotional or to try to maintain a close relationship with me. My mom's stepdad is nice, but I never got to know him too well either. By the time I came along, he had married my grandmother and my mom was never very close to him, so I guess that kind of rubbed off. He doesn't have kids of his own, and I don't think he wanted to, so I doubt he had much interest in being an involved grandparent. My mom's mom was a...um...let's be nice and say, a harridan. She once told my mom that I was her least favorite of the three grandkids. So, I wish I had known my grandfather. It would have been so important to me to have someone in my life who was stable and interested in me in that grandparently way, where everything I did was perfect and wonderful and worthy of praise. I never had a relationship as a child with an adult who accepted my unconditionally, and I wonder what difference that would have made in my life and development.

I spent alot of time talking to my mom's two first cousins, kids of her uncle that is still alive. It was interesting to hear them say "Oh my God, you are SO a part of this family! Your personality and the way you talk and your humor are all so 'this family.'" They (as opposed to my mom's cousins from one of the other brothers of her father) in particular ARE so similar to me, it's bizarre that I didn't grow up around them.

I looked around my family reunion and here's what I saw. Me. I saw Me. I saw curvy women with gorgeous, thick hair, and beautiful lips, who weren't skinny, and laughed really loud and told bawdy jokes and drank beer and teased everyone mercilessly. I saw handsome men who were confident but self-deprecating, ambitious and talented, devoted to their families, down to earth and kind of salty. I saw people who had made mistakes, but were forgiving themselves and keeping their sense of humor.

In short, I haven't spent much time with my extended family, but it was sort of fascinating to get dropped into my family reunion and see so many people who were so much like me, especially personality-wise. Perhaps there is a personality gene? Certainly, I LOOK like my mom, and my mom looks like her cousin and the sister of her father that died young, so I guess the family resemblance is going strong. Upon meeting my mom's cousin, he looked around and commented, "Damn, we got some NICE looking women in this family!" And it's true!

I'm thinking alot lately about the way I look, accepting the way I look (and whether I ever can or will), and now I'm thinking about genetics and how it affects my self-perception. All these curvy women! Am I really lazy because I'm a bit heavier than I'd like to be? Or, is it unnatural to starve myself into submission in a way that is CLEARLY against my genes' better judgment? Certainly, I am heading back to the gym, and I want to be healthy and in shape, but as always, I struggle with when enough is actually enough. Personality-wise, I often feel ostracized here because people in Seattle are so reserved that my percepti0n is that I look like a screeching shrew in comparison. My reunion teaches me that I need to remember that *I'm* not "wrong," I'm just me, in a place where people are different than me.

My family reunion was really powerful to me. I am thinking about alot of things I haven't had time to think about recently, between school and the bar and everything else. I will likely explore this some more after I wrap my brain around it a bit more.

Monday, August 07, 2006

Pack it up, pack it in

Is it time to pack it in? There hasn't been a comment here in days and readership is WAY DOWWWWWWWWWN. I'm guessing that now that I don't have much to write about that is law school/bar exam related, people are defecting to better, more relevant, sites.

I wish I could post more, but I can't. Today was my first day back at work and it was nuts, and only promises to get worse.

I'm not making a threat to quit in the hopes of getting everyone to leave comments and send me emails telling me not to, I'm just saying...I'm strongly considering quitting as I think my time here might be done since it seems that people aren't reading or interacting in the way they used to, which was pretty much the only reason I continued this past year to begin with. I'd like to write more fiction/quasi-fiction short stories and stuff and really start flexing my creative writing muscles, but I kind of think I won't have tons of time which means that posts would be few and far between.

I guess I'll keep on considering.

Sunday, August 06, 2006

Overheard at the airport.

My mom has not been on a plane in damn near 12 years. When she met me here after the first leg of her trip, so that we could fly to Spokane together on our way to Idaho, she came up to me in the airport and went, "Oh my GOD! Do you KNOW they make you take your SHOES OFF at the airport???!!!!"

Sigh. She's so genuine and sweet and nice - it's always shocking to me how out of touch her and my dad are with what's going on in the world - they're just wrapped up in their own thing down there in Retirement-Ville.

Anyway, lots of fun family reunion stories, AFTER I get unpacked and put away and all that nonsense.

Friday, August 04, 2006

The blogger is [out]...again.

Yes, it IS 4:45 a.m. God, I love early morning flights.

I'm off to Idaho, back on Sunday night. I've been doing (and buying) lots of fun things here with my D.C. friend which has kept me away from my computer for the past couple of days, but since I start work on Monday, I think I can promise to be a little bit better about blogging starting then. I'll try to take lots of pictures in Idaho - maybe my mom will bring her digital camera since I have no plans whatsoever to haul my gigantic old one out there. Hasta pastas.

Wednesday, August 02, 2006

What are you lookin' at?

Hell yeah I'm going to bed before 10pm! AND I had four beers tonight. Take THAT! My friend from D.C. is here, and some of my other friends came out...it was fun to see everyone, I got to have beer, and tomorrow I'm going to the zoo. YAY! PLUS, more BEER! God, how could life get any better? Oh yeah, I could force my mom to buy me a massage and a bunch of other shit in resort-town USA this weekend. Oh yeah. Alright, gotta go to bed...a girl need her beauty sleep - especially after the bar exam when I am PARTICULARLY unbeautiful.

Girl of a thousand faces, from a long line of basketcases...

I'm back. I'm exhausted because I drove for 7 hours then went to dinner at my friend's house, watched a movie (sorta) had a lot of wine (definitely) and we both painted our toenails and talked girl talk. It was superfun, but I am SO. TIRED.

Tomorrow morning my friend from D.C. gets into town, so we're going to hang out for a couple of days. I think it will be fun to do all the touristy stuff I didn't get to do the past three years. Hopefully I'll have some time to post as I have lots of things running through my head but no time to write. We'll see. I leave super-early Friday morning for a weekend in Idaho, so if I don't find time to write something in the next couple of days, it will likely be next week. Yikes!

Anyway. I'm back.