Friday, March 28

Just call me Ebert (or Roeper)(or Siskel if you want to go old-school, but not Siskel if you are comparing me to a dead guy)

I won passes to attend a free screening of the movie “21,” so last night Andrew and I had a date. We went to dinner and everything (except it wasn’t fancy dinner, just Panera because it’s close to the theater)(and did you know that Panera will make delicious grilled cheese for adults and that it is really good dipped in their tomato soup?)(just don’t check the Panera website for nutrition facts or you will never eat their French onion soup again)(but I digress).

So we saw this movie. If you haven’t seen the ads, it’s about a super smarty from MIT who gets into counting cards in blackjack in order to pay for Harvard medical school. And there is a poorly developed love interest, and the funny guy from Superbad, and plenty of Vegas eye candy for the menfolk in the audience. Except for some illogical parts, Andrew and I both found it to be pretty entertaining and fun. Andrew especially had problems with what this MIT class was discussing when Andrew remembers that from high school for crissakes and couldn’t they have picked a little more difficult topic? Also, Andrew and I both didn’t get why this kid so desperately needed money for medical school. Doesn’t he know that people will give him money for free, and he won’t even have to pay it back for a long time?

But overall, not a bad movie. And I kind of got the parts about counting cards because I happened to edit a book on blackjack at my previous job (FYI, you don’t have to have any knowledge of a subject whatsoever to edit a book on it). So maybe go see it. Or don’t, because it will totally be on cable in a few months.

Wednesday, March 26

Do you have the time?

Oh, never mind. I do. It's a little after 9:00 in the evening. And has anyone seen my husband? Oh, wait. That's right. He is still at work. He's kicking off his 14th hour of the day. Seriously.

Not that I am complaining. Just sharing, mostly. I got my complaining over with the last time he worked late late late every night. I called him around 7:00 and asked when he thought he'd be home, and he said that he might just stay there all night and keep working. For just a second, I thought he was joking. That Andrew, what a kidder, I thought. But he was not joking. He was (still is, actually) considering working through the night until he completes whatever it is that he is doing. I suggested that if he does that, he ought to at least then come home and get some sleep, rather than just stay at the office until 5:00 tomorrow evening. I'm really not sure if he had considered the possibility of getting any sleep at all.

And this whole thing pretty much sums up the difference between me and him. Today, Andrew got to work at 7:30am and will be there working hard until . . . and I got to work this morning around 8:45, and then it was a super slow day, so I left about 4:45. Who comes across as worse, the workaholic or the lazy whore?

Monday, March 24

No autographs, please

I'm about a week and a half late writing about this, but the photo of my mom was just too good not to post. My mom recently (about a week and a half ago, actually) starred in a children's play. Okay, maybe she wasn't exactly the star, but she was certainly the highlight and the comic relief. My mom is in a women's organization, meaning only women are in it, and every year this bunch of ladies puts on a children's play. Usually they adapt a well known fairy tale; this year it was Sleeping Beauty.

I'm not going to lie: I didn't think the play was that fantastic. But Mom said that the kiddos loved it. And I'm not going to lie: I honestly think my mom was the best part. She was really funny. She played the part of the gatekeeper to the castle where everybody had been sleeping for one hundred years. The prince shows up, and my mom's character tries to keep the prince from going to the castle, but then they both go check out the sleeping people. Then once they're inside the castle, my mom's character runs off and checks out the food and grabs a turkey leg and brings it back in to the prince. And it was really funny. Maybe you had to be there. But I hope the picture speaks for itself.

Nom, nom, nom.

After the play, they let the kids come up and check out the stage and the scenery. My dad and another hubby (my parents' neighbor, Fred) were recruited to patrol the stage and make sure the kids didn't mess anything up. Don't they look fierce?

Fred and Russ. . . kicking ass and taking names since 2008

Wednesday, March 19

My lameness. Let me show you it.

Ahh, yesterday. All my troubles seemed so far away. But then I found out that Andrew invited a friend over (Hi Jeff!) to watch a movie after work. Don’t They Know That American Idol Was Going To Be On And That I Must Watch It? And That We Only Have One Television?

So I was faced with a dilemma. Yes, we have a DVR, so I could just record AI (American Idol, people, not the Steven Spielberg/Haley Joel Osment crapfest of 2001) and watch it the next day. But noooo! The media will talk about it, and I will hear it, and it will ruin it all! So I must watch on the day it is on. I suppose I could wait to watch it until the movie is over. But then it would be so late, and I need my sleep (because, seriously, I am Old), and I wouldn’t be able to vote for David Cook! Tragic!

What to do? Let me tell you what I did. I emailed a few of my friends, the ones I thought were least likely to laugh at me, and begged them to let me come over and watch the show with them. It was kind of a new low. Frankly, I’m not sure why I’m sharing this with you. Perhaps as a warning? I may invite myself over to your homes at any moment.

I got a handful of responses that literally all started with “Hahaha!” I kid you not. But my good friend Stephanie took pity on me and invited me over. Rather, she allowed me to invite myself over. And she was so awesome! She made dinner, and gave me wine, and we watched the entire two-hour episode of AI. And she doesn’t usually even watch it! I had a really fun time. I hope Andrew watches more movies during AI in the future so I can hang out at Stephanie’s again.

BTW, funny story: I got home before the movie was over, so I went upstairs and read a book. When Jeff left, Andrew came upstairs and we were talking. About ten minutes later, we heard some kind of car noise. Andrew looked out the window, and Jeff was just leaving. He bought a new car yesterday with a manual transmission. And who is still learning to drive a stick shift? I’ll give you three guesses. . .

Monday, March 17

My Eyes, Part Deux

Yesterday Andrew and I were at a coffee shop. I had chai, he a mocha. We were just sitting and chatting when it happened. The same strange zigzag light in my vision. It wasn't as severe as the other day, but it was still making me all hurty and fuzzy. I checked the time, so I'd know how long it lasted. Like before, the zigzag started moving to the outer corners of my peripheral vision, then eventually disappeared. Again, it took about twenty minutes. This time my headache was more severe. I decided it was time to try to get in to the ophthalmologist a little sooner.

I called this morning and told them about my messed up vision, and asked if I could move my appointment (it was scheduled for 11 days from now). She asked me to describe what had been happening, and when I told her, she said I needed to come in right away. Like, that morning. This kind of freaked me out. It was apparently potentially bad enough that it might need to be dealt with immediately.

I went in at 11:30. They dilated my eyes and checked for retinal detachment. And I don't have that. It all looks good. Good-ish. I don't have any retinal detachment and it seems that it was ophthalmic migraines after all. But I have no idea what is causing them. Something I am eating? Stress? There is just no telling. I have to go back in a month so they can check again and make sure nothing looks different.

I asked about LASIK, if that would decrease my risk for retinal detachment. And, unfortunately, no. It won't. A stretched-out cornea is stretched out for life. So this high risk of torn retinas will be with me for life. Yay. . .

Wednesday, March 12

I can't help myself. . .

Is liking American Idol soooo yesterday? I don't care. I can't help it. I'm a fan! And this year, I feel a particular connection to the show because I karaoked with one of the contestants! One of the good ones! Even Simon thinks he might win! Is the suspense killing you? Which contestant is it, you ask. Tell me, you say. Okay, I say. It's David Cook! Now go check out his website and start voting for him! For this is the first year I am actually voting for anybody on American Idol, and it makes the whole experience much more interesting.

Help David Win!

Monday, March 10

Is this TMI, Dr. Internets?

This afternoon my eyes started freaking out on me. In a scary is-this-what-it-feels-like-to-go-blind? kind of way. But I was overreacting. Probably. I was working at my computer when I got this lightning-bolt shaped, blurry, flashing light spot in my vision and a headache to go with it (except the headache was already there, it just seemed intensified with the vision thing).

I would guess that if I had more normal eyes to begin with, I wouldn't have been too concerned about this. But I have really terrible vision. Like superbad, can't-see-the-Big-E kind of bad. And when I saw my eye doctor last year, she told me that since my vision was so bad, my retinas were more likely to tear, so if I saw flashing lights in my peripheral vision that didn't go away, I should call and come in immediately. Because I could lose my vision if I didn't take care of the retina problem. So when I saw this flashing light this afternoon, I freaked a little. Also, my eye has been twitching lately, which always seems to happen when I'm feeling stressed, and last night I was feeling like there was a lot of pressure behind my eyes and I thought I should probably go to the ophthalmologist and make sure nothing was wrong. And then the next day something was Wrong.

Wait five minutes, I said to myself. See if has gone away by then. Five minutes came and went. Still lighting bolts. Possibly even getting more intense. I honestly couldn't read my computer screen anymore, it had affected my vision that much. Ten minutes. Still flashy. Time to google. (Somehow that is always my go-to solution. And it hasn't failed me yet.)

I googled something like "vision flashing light eye." Maybe one other word. Eh, doesn't matter. I found that this is apparently a fairly common and not-too-severe problem. It's called an ophthalmic migraine and 10 percent of migraine sufferers have them (however, I am not a migraine sufferer). It can be either a precursor to a "common" migraine or it can happen by itself, with no headache. Instead of lightning bolts, all the websites called them zigzags. And they all said that the zigzags would intensify (check), expand outward toward the periphery of vision (check), and then go away after 20-30 minutes.

And like magic, at almost exactly twenty minutes my zigzags went away. And about an hour after that I scheduled an appointment with my eye doctor.

Thursday, March 6


At work today, I had a meeting with the illustrator of one of the books I’m working on. It’s a fun storybook for kids. The copy is all written and the illustrator has begun working on the paintings for the artwork. We were meeting because there are a few places in the book where the art will have copy, such as a vintage-y poster, a label on a machine, and a few recipe cards. It’s my job to come up with funny, clever, silly copy for these things that kids will just love.

After the meeting it hit me. I’m writing ridiculous, far-out recipes for a living. This is MY JOB. And I just started smiling. I really might have the best job ever. I wish I could say more about what I’m working on right now, because it’s a lot of fun, creative stuff. But alas. I cannot. But it’s not because I don’t love you.

Monday, March 3

Showered with love (and cookie cake)

On Saturday, my mom and I hosted a baby shower for my prego sister, Courtney. So fun! I haven't seen Courtney since Christmas, and (obviously) she's a lot more bellycious. She's right at 7 months and so cute! With the exception of lunch tomorrow, I won't see her again until after the baby is born, so I soaked up as much of the preggers as I could.

The shower was good. Lots of wonderful people were there, and Courtney got lots of baby goodies. Pictures below. Too bad I'm not a great photographer. Some of them are pretty dark. You'll just have to believe me when I tell you that the lights were, in fact, on.

A simple spread, but good. And the invisible punch was to die for.

I came up with the phrase for the cake. The beak was all the cookie place.
(Have you picked up on the rubber duck theme yet?

The party was going great until that giant duck tried to sneak in and steal the gifts.

My mother, my sister, and her unborn child. . .
two and a half generations of awesomeness (also paleness).

Look at that belly! Don't you just want to give it a little pat?

I'm the one on the right. And look! The punch is back!

Awww. . .