Thursday, November 29, 2007

you care! you really care! (sniff)

Blogging from the berry to say that yes, I am still alive and am touched that you care! (well, all three of you that noticed my absence, that is). I got back from my fantastic trip to DC and walked straight into two days of non-stop client meetings and after-work schmooze fests. It's all rather draining, especially after a four-day mini-vacation where the most difficult decisions I faced were whether to eat mashed potatoes or sweet potatoes for breakfast. It doesn't help that time seems to move extra-fast once you get past Halloween... One minute you're dressed like a fool and eating too much candy, next thing it's time for turkey, the rampant consumerism that is the holidays, office holiday parties, and the navel-gazing that accompanies the end of yet another year of this crazy life.

Thanksgiving was excellent this year, lots of time spent at home with the fam, tons of leftovers and lunch/dinner/drinks with all my favorite people. It felt refreshing to be back in DC again... To surreptitiously people-watch on the metro while pretending to read the paper, then emerging out of the bowels to be greeted by the cleansingly cold winter air as you knot your scarf a bit tighter and square your shoulders against the wind as you head toward the tea shop to meet your buddy. To go out in DC bars and be reminded of the unusual brand of international snobbery that is completely unique to DC... Of course there are globe-trotting brats in every major city but DC has its own strange breed of diplomats that makes it completely annoying but fascinating at the same time.

I'm back in Austin now, on one hand relishing the fact that I can leave my apartment with just a puffy vest or pashmina instead of a winter coat and that it still hits mid-60s and sometimes even breaks 70 when i'm walking to whole foods to grab a salad for lunch, yet on the other hand missing the familiar faces, foods, smells and sights that represent home.

(completely unrelated tangent- apparently I have completely lost my ability to hold my liquor, a fact that troubles me deeply. Perhaps it will be a new year's resolution to reverse this worrisome trend?)

*EDITED TO ADD* I don't think I should blog from the 'berry anymore. whenever I read my berry-posts I find that the grammar is generally crappier and the sentences don't really flow that well (not that the grammar usually rules and the sentences flow like butta but you know what I mean). maybe it's the lack of the QWERTY keyboard? the fact that everything is all properly capitalized and shit? I don't know. but methinks it's time to stop the berry posts.

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

the problem with living in Texas that you forget how the weather works in the rest of the country (oh man I sound like a real texan- the bad kind- the kind that doesn't realize there is actually a whole country and world outside of Texas). Exhibit a: the packing that I am supposed to be doing right now. Despite the fact that I have checked the DC weather about six times, I still haven't internalized the fact that the low temperatures are going to be in the 20s. Buh? 20s? What does that mean? Does that mean that I shouldn't bring the outfit of short-sleeved top with jeans and cute flats with no socks that I wore to work today? Does that mean I have to bring a jacket? Gloves? A scarf? Do I even have those things anymore? I am wandering around my room aimlessly, wondering if I can get away with jeans, a tank, a sweater and some sockless flats. For some reason I have become very anti-sock in the almost-two years that I've lived here. The only times I wear socks now are when i'm running or when i'm wearing my cowboy boots (omg 2nd bad texan moment in this post).

For the DC buddies that I will hopefully get to see, please don't laugh at me when you see me freezing my ass off in short sleeves and cowboy boots, ok? I blame Texas.

Happy turkey day to you all.

Friday, November 16, 2007

sometimes I forget that I live in TX. other times I am not so lucky

there is an admin in our office who is wearing a pretty interesting t-shirt today. it has a camouflage pattern on it with rhinestones across the front that say "He Hunts. I $hop."

kill me now.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

obligatory post about the weather

take a look at the forecast and say it with me now: "WTF?"

I worked from home yesterday because I wasn't feeling great and was forced by the combination of overly warm weather + low-grade fever to actually turn on the AIR CONDITIONING. in NOVEMBER. when thanksgiving is mere DAYS away (yum, turkey).

is it weird that I am looking forward to the WINDY weather on Thurs?

on an unrelated note, I am currently obsessed with the song "Way I Am" by Ingrid Michaelson... apparently it got all this acclaim when it was featured in an Old Navy commercial about sweaters, but I guess I missed that. it's a sweet, hopeful love song that is a cross between jewel's "you were meant for me" and sarah mclachlan's "your love is better than ice cream" (or whatever that song's called).

also, I found out that one of my bestest friends in the world got engaged this past wknd... and then another friend at work (who graduated from college the same year I did) is expecting. what is this world coming to? aren't we still, like, 17?

Friday, November 09, 2007

just another thursday night... the broken spoke, y'all.

(you think I'm joking, but this is actually what it looks like)
I had to skip the two-steppin' lesson this time, but I had promised my friend Audrey to meet her and her sister (who's visiting from Ireland) for a night of live music and good times -- so I pulled on my awesome cowboy boots, threw on some jeans and a top and headed out the door to broken spoke.
broken spoke never fails to disappoint. it's this run-down looking building with disgusting chicken-fried-steak-type menu items in the front restaurant and a low-ceilinged dance hall in the back. it even has a mini-museum showcasing all the talent that has played there (willie nelson, etc etc etc). the dance floor gets completely packed with swirling couples of all types -- girls with lots of tattoos, guys with Elvis-style hair, men in boots and hats, girls in wrap dresses and cowboy boots, people in t-shirts and jeans, cowboys, yuppies, dorks, music heads, old people, young people, everything goes. you drink $3 dos equis and dance with as many people as you can, stopping every few song for a break in front of the huge fans to cool off. the bathrooms have curtains decorated like the TX flag instead of actual doors, and you have to hold it shut with one hand if you want any semblance of privacy while you pee.
I was joking with my friend's sister about how she's definitely far from Ireland when I realized that I would never been caught dead doing this in DC. it's not that I was too cool,I just don't think this type of place would have even been on my radar. yet there I was, wearing boots and jeans, two-steppin' with all kinds of dance partners from this Napoleon Dynamite look-alike with a TX flag handkerchief tucked into the back pocket of his jeans to a 50-something man with a large beer belly who held with me with a really tight grip and danced surprisingly well for a man of his girth.
there's something to be said to being willing to live different lives. I've done the club scene in DC, I've worn stiletto heels while drinking insanely overpriced martinis in NYC, I've partied until 6 am in Buenos Aires, I've rang in the New Year in Barcelona, I've hung out in fratty bars in Charlottesville, I've channeled my inner lounge singer in piano bars in Switzerland, I've smoked hookahs at Moroccan-style lounges... and now I've worn cowboy boots and two-stepped in a crumbling dance hall in Austin TX where men still hold out their hand while they ask you if you want to dance and then dip you when the song is over.
I want more, more, more... keep it coming.

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

dragging ass

I don't know about you guys, but my ass is DRAGGING these days... I don't know if it's the time change or the fact that it's dark when I leave work or the fact that I actually wore long pants and long sleeves and closed-toe shoes and a pashmina today (Austin has finally cottoned on to the fact that hey! it's almost Thanksgiving! maybe we will start cooling off a little... then again, it's supposed to be 87 degrees on Friday so who the F knows) or what, but I do know that I didn't get out of bed until 10:30 this morning. I think the craziness of the past few weeks is catching up to me and the time change is just making things worse.

all's I know is that I want to go home, put on sweats, make Kraft macaroni and cheese and sit on my couch.

anyone want to join me?

Sunday, November 04, 2007

seen yesterday while swimming laps

I was sitting on a ledge near the pool, drying off and resting after my workout yesterday afternoon when I heard a strange noise. it sounded like someone was trying to hock a loogie, and since the pool was relatively deserted aside from 1-2 families and a few lap swimmers I figured it was one of the 15-year-old lifeguards trying to amuse himself in the little side office. the noise persisted, and I looked around to try and find the culprit. turns out it was this 65-ish looking gentleman standing IN THE LAP LANE, trying to dislodge some serious phlegm from his throat as he stood there in the water with his belly paunching out and his ear hairs growing in imaginative patterns.

I became even more horrified when the hocking sounds stopped and I realized that he had successfully brought up all of the offending phlegm. WHAT WAS HE GOING TO DO WITH IT?? please tell me he is not going to spit it back into the water or just casually spit it into his hand and run his fingers through the chlorine. please, please, please, because if he does, I swear to God I'm never coming back to this pool, I don't care that it's free, that it's a great workout, that I can still swim outside in November, etc. as I continued to stare at him from behind the protection of my sunglasses, he casually picked up a green plastic Nalgene-esque water bottle, unscrewed the cap, and spit the contents of his mouth into the bottle as if it was the most normal thing in the world.


I then left and went home and took an extremely hot shower.