Saturday, October 22, 2011

Friday Wineday

[Okay. So I actually wrote this post last night. And before I got a chance to post it, I fell asleep. Cat and computer in lap. Hot mess. I thought I would post it in its raw organic form though, as it might be amusing. Enjoy!]

I just poured myself a glass of wine. A big glass of wine. I'm sitting in my apartment, on a Friday night, by myself, and I have opened a bottle of Chardonnay. If that doesn't sound like the beginning of a romantic comedy then I don't know what does. And then there's me: hair all over the place, lounging in sweats sans bra, listening to the Strokes, Weezer, and the Shins. I am Bridget Jones in the flesh. I'm just asking for a fantastical, romantic, comedic storyline. I'm sure it all sounds far more kitschy and cool than it looks right now. Cause right now it looks kinda pathetic.

I am exhausted.

I cannot even express to you how happy I am that it is Friday. Really. I've only had a good twenty hours of sleep in the last four days and I am pooped. It's been a good week-- I've been busy and I've been happy. But by golly Friday could not have come sooner.

I just got back from babysitting little baby Julia. We had a blast-- I taught her a dance to Beyonce's new song "Love on Top" (which I am completely obsessed with right now), we watched Ni-Hao Kai-lan and learned how to say "balloon" in Chinese, we cuddled in a blanket on the floor and pretended a big bad wolf was coming to get us, and even shared some apple slices. Such a lovely evening. Until bath time came... then the party was over. Poor little Julia was so overtired and I tried everything. After many tears, Cinderella readings, and rocking her while singing "The Way I Am" by Ingrid Michaelson over and over and over, she calmed down. Just in time for Lorelei to come home. Here I was, the baby-whisperer, back at square one. It was a sad way to end our happy evening. Especially because I had been looking forward to it so much! Well, you can't win 'em all. Look how sweet:


I worked my butt off at SOS this week. Here's a little secret I'll let you all in on: working in an office is dumb. No one does anything, and if they find out that you actually accomplish things when you're on the time clock, chances are they will not do their job and then give it to you. Luckily I am only going to be at this job for another month. I am kind of sad about it though. I really love Sarah and Danielle. They make it worth going to work everyday.

We got a new guy this week, too. Allow me to describe him: roughly 65 years old, balding, narrow eagle-like face, warm smile, dressed in black from head to toe including a tucked in shirt, black Skechers, and RED socks. Red socks. Everyday. Without fail. He also has two tattoos on either arm: one of an atom, and another of a cartoon English bulldog. He has a booming voice. The kind that makes your brain completely stop, especially when you're in the middle of leaving a message on someone's machine about consolidating their payday loans.

He's the kind of guy who is so nice and wants to be so helpful but you can't help but be completely annoyed with him the whole time. He talked to Katie yesterday for about an hour about existentialism and the Big Bang Theory. Ahem, during work. Apparently he has a book that's about to be published and it's going to "change the world".

Righttttt. Squid pro ro.

He also says "DEPOSIT ONLY" a million times. Our customers have to close out their bank account in order to secure it from their payday loan lenders, and sometimes it helps to make it DEPOSIT ONLY until they can get a new account. Usually I say this once. But once doesn't cut it for Red Socks. He has to say it MULTIPLE times in a loud, slow, pronounced voice. It drives Sarah and I crazy.

Hey guys, remember that time I wrote a blog post while drinking wine? That was a bad choice.

SOS gets more and more ridiculous everyday. Yesterday we had a skype conference with other sales agents in other cities. (There's only five of us total). I get a ridiculous amount of paperwork out everyday. Everyone knows it. And my boss turns to me, during the conference and says "Yeah, we've had a really good week. She... uhh.... (staring at me blankly)... SHE got twelve enrollments out yesterday."

Didn't know my name. There was no way I was going to give it to him.

Story of my life. You're welcome sir. I get here at 7 am everyday, get paid next to nothing, and make you a ton of business. And you don't know my name. Not even my fake caller name. Natasha and I were deeply offended. ONE. MONTH. MORE.

Luckily I have some seriously great friends. Jimmy and I have had opposite schedules recently. He's been working the night shifts at American Apparel as they're getting ready for their huge Halloween extravaganza. I left the apartment yesterday at 6:40 am... as he was walking up the stairs. It was ridiculous. Neither of us should have been coming or going to work when it was as dark and cold as it was. But we have both decided that life just kind of sucks right now. I'm coming to terms with it. And when I say sucks I am referring to the amount of time and effort I put into things and the compensation and happiness I get out of it. Not much. But MAN am I building character. That's what my twenty-second year is for, right?

One thing I am very excited about....

My first ever article was published!

It's a big deal for me. It was so bizarre writing it. I had to remind myself: "Okay, this isn't for school... and this isn't for you... you're writing this... for... people to read..."

I had free reign to write and explore. All I had to do was write about one red flag that can come up in relationships. Of course I could list a million, but I struggled to find a topic to start with. I finally settled on clichés, the bain of my romantic existence. I love creativity and I am so turned off by guys who continue to follow traditions because they can't think of anything else. It was so much fun to work on. I'm a real writer! I write things and people read them! And another thing I realized... I'm an adult writer. I can write about adult content because I am indeed, an adult. Weird.

Here's a link to the article!

You'll be surprised to know that I did NOT pick that cat picture on the post. My choice was replaced with that. Which takes away the legitimacy of my article just a tad...? Oh well.

I have been spending a lot of time with Jackie and Rachel this week. Jackie and I went to 24 Hour Fitness for a boot camp class the other day followed by dinner at her house. Lovely. Rachel and I also had a great night on Thursday--- conversation and dinner at Chevy's, visiting Sports Chalet to see if they had Sharks gear, thrift store shopping for Halloween costumes, then eating some It's-Its at my house. They're the most amazing ice cream sandwiches: vanilla ice cream between two oatmeal cookies, dipped in dark chocolate. It's ridiculous.

Rachel graduates from USC in December and is then moving to New York! I don't know what I am going to do without her. She's going to live in her family's huge home in New Jersey... by herself. Just 25 minutes from the city. Yes. I have thought about the possibility of moving there, too. It's still in the beginnings of thought so don't freak out. I'm simply thinking about how AMAZING that would be to live in/near NYC for part of my life. JUST thinking. But what an opportunity... and you all know how I feel about LA...

I'm so lucky to have good friends. They keep me so grounded. I can't tell you how much I value a good friend.

In other news: our gas has been turned off. It's a mystery as to why. We don't know why and the company doesn't know either. All they know is that they can't come out until THURSDAY to turn it back on. All I know is I can't make popcorn on the stove and I can't take a warm bath. If that's not a reason to go directly to bed I don't know what is. Oh, maybe too much wine, too.

I feel like so much of this has been negative. Here are some of my favorite things right now:

- Trader Joe's Pumpkin Spice Coffee
- Thrift store finds
- Homemade Halloween costumes and Frasier's hilarious costume... wait for it...
- Getting Sharks tickets in the mail
- The new Beyoncé "Love on Top" video and song:
- Planning for the San Francisco half marathon in April
- My Hocus Pocus DVD that I ordered should be here any day...

There. That makes me feel better.

I cannot wait to wake up tomorrow and it not be a weekday. I am going to go to yoga, work on my Halloween costume (which --prepare yourself-- is very silly), clean my apartment, order things on Amazon (my most recent and dangerous obsession), hang out with Jimmy and Rachel, read, write, and SLEEP. No work. None at all. Just me, relaxing. In a very cold bath.

Sounds like heaven. Let me know if anyone wants to join me. Not in the bath. Just in happy life.


Sunday, October 16, 2011

Write when you get work

What. A. Week.

Life as a twenty-two-year-old is crazy. Crazy fun, of course, but mostly just crazy. I wake up some mornings and have to remind myself where I am. Not because I am waking up in places other than my own bed, thank you very much-- simply because I still can't believe I'm in LA. I'm kind of doing it.

In all honesty, I don't really know what I'm doing. I keep thinking about something Steve Jobs said in his commencement speech to the 2005 graduating class at Stanford:

You can't connect the dots looking forward; you can only connect them looking backwards. So you have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future. You have to trust in something — your gut, destiny, life, karma, whatever. This approach has never let me down, and it has made all the difference in my life.

Life can feel so overwhelming. Sometimes I just wake up and remind myself that all I have to do is meet the Universe halfway. I get up, I do my part, I don't half-ass things, and I hope that serendipity finds me somewhere in the middle.

I have been incredibly fortunate since moving to LA. Right place, right time, great people, experiences, lessons, and now even better opportunities. I received three jobs this week and I am... thrilled. Thrilled, thankful, and very, very lucky.

The first job?

A writing position for a dating and relationship advice website called RED FLAG 101! The site is geared towards discussing the red flags associated with dating. We all know those moments in relationships when we should silently turn around and run the other direction. But if you're like me, you don't. Partly because I like learning life lessons firsthand and partly because I am a naïve romantic. I don't regret that though--- it makes for better stories and better decisions in the future. (That's the idea at least).

I found the job on Craigslist about a month ago and forwarded along a link to my blog. The creator of the site, a guy by the name of Minor, checked out some of my posts and liked what he saw... and here we are! I'll be writing one to two mini articles a week which is totally doable. I spend my free time writing anyways so it will be so nice to have a focus. And boy oh BOY do I have material. I haven't decided if I am going to write under a pen name or not... perhaps I shall. I'll think about it.

Here's a link to the website! It does have some adult themes, so for all you timid, wholesome souls out there, be warned:

Speaking of dating, I wanted to talk about something really quick. I want to address the whole OkCupid thing. Last post I talked about going on the website again after an earlier stint in the summer as a social/writing material experiment. I understand that by saying I was back on the website, you can come to three valid conclusions: (1) that I am looking for a boyfriend, (2) that I am looking around for options in general, and (3) that I think that online dating is legitimate.

These are all logical assumptions.

None of these are true.

Let me address this as best I can.

I'm not looking. I'm completely happy and very lucky with how everything has been going in my life. It's been refreshing and lovely and exciting. And thirdly, I personally only believe in real, natural, unexplicable attraction and good timing.

I posted my blog last week when my heart was in a bit of a funk. Part of it completely understands that it's not time for things like Like/Love. It's clearly time for me to put on my Work Barbie outfit and be serious about success right now. Which I LOVE! I am so excited that that part of my life is starting to open. So the other part of my heart, which is feeling a bit left out, is trying its hardest to pretend not to care.

What I am trying to say, rather ineloquently, is that I was trying my best to appear aloof. I don't carry vulnerabilities well, and apparently my defense mechanism came in the form of a flippant paragraph about online dating. The last thing I want is to be misrepresented, especially by myself. Silly.

Thank you for allowing me to clarify.

AAANNND We're back! Man that was a weird subplot twist. Where were we...

Ah yes, I believe I was talking about jobs?

My second job: as a tour guide for Goin' Hollywood Tours! Goin' Hollywood runs high school drama field trips to Hollywood and other performance-based destinations. The company is owned by Camp Bravo and that's actually how I learned about Bravo in the first place-- with my drama class way back when! There is nothing I love more than Camp Bravo and kids, so to be able to give back even more during the rest of the year is such an awesome opportunity. I have my first training trip at the beginning of November and I can't wait. It's only a weekend job from time to time and it's extremely flexible... so it won't conflict with my most exciting news...

I start work as a Publicity Assistant for the Screen Actor's Guild Awards next month!

I got the call Friday night and I have been on cloud nine ever since. I can't wait to get started. Everyone I met when I went into the office the other day was absolutely wonderful. There was a great energy there and I am so honored to be a part of it. My job will be to help monitor the publicity and buzz leading up to the SAG awards!

I am a happy happy girl. I start at the end of November... so just enough time for me to REALLY appreciate it after a whole month more of consolidating payday loans for nine hours a day. Time for me to use that degree in Film and Television I worked so hard for.

SPEAKING of that... Look what came in the mail the other day!

Yup, that's my diploma alright. And Frasier's tail. Yes, he's on the table because he thinks he runs the place. I'm so excited to get a frame for my diploma and hang it in my... wait. What the heck am I supposed to do with it? I don't have an office or a den. Hmph. Looks like it'll just have to sit above my $15 IKEA desk when I'm writing. If that's not motivational I don't know what is.

Monday and Tuesday morning I worked half days and then headed to Jackie's makeup school to be a model! I know, hilarious. After lots of hairspray and teasing and powdery makeup, I looked like this:

Yikes. This picture is BIZARRE. I look like I am sixty five with jowls and a lazy eye. Clearly I was intentionally trying to look the part. ...Clearly. It was a good experience though, until the teacher came around to analyze the makeup. She instructed my makeup artist, Hillie, that not only did one of my eyebrows need to be filled in, but also that my upper lip line is completely uneven on one side and needed more attention.

Thanks, teacher.

My mom drove out here on Wednesday! This picture was taken in front of Lululemon at the Americana shopping center in Glendale. We were wandering around, enjoying Honey Lavender ice cream (my favorite!) from LA Creamery, talking about life, when we stumbled upon this storefront window, after I had literally said the same quote to her. So of course, an obligatory picture was taken.

We had such a lovely weekend--- most of it spent looking for places for her when she moves out here at the end of the month. I am very excited to have my mum nearby again. I've been missing my cooking and movie watching buddy. We found her a little place in Toluca Lake about ten minutes away. Joy! But really, I'm most excited that Bob Hope's house is a block away from her new place. He's my hero.

Get a look at one of the applications she filled out:

If you can't read it, this is what it says:
- Have you ever been evicted for non-payment of rent or any other reason?
- Have you ever been convicted of any crime?
- Do you have any musical instruments?

Well at least they've got their priorities in order.

I also had the special opportunity to see my dear friend LAURA this weekend! Laura was my roommate freshman year at U of A. We hadn't seen each other in years! She was visiting from Texas, staying with her sweet friend Katie who also went to Arizona. We all met in Newport Beach at Fashion Island to do some catching up!

I introduced them to Pinkberry which of course was a huge hit. We wandered through stores laughing and chatting all the while. I seriously love Laura. She's like a sister, really. It was like we were never apart. We also stumbled into a pet store--- complete with my new favorite puppy...

A buggle! It's half English bulldog, half puggle (which is half pug, half beagle). Sounds like an American dog to me.

Woof. It's been a long week. And looky there... Monday is on the horizon. How'd that happen? I'm working another thirteen hour work day tomorrow... eight at SOS and five at LUSH. Oy.

Here's to another week of collecting more dots to connect. Someday.


Monday, October 10, 2011

Gibson Girl

I feel bad for Mondays. They get such a bad rap. It's not Mondays' fault that they have to go right after Sunday-- clearly the best day of the week. How are they supposed to follow Sundays and still be somewhat cool?

But really, weekends are the best invention ever. Particularly weekends in October. Is there anything better? Always plenty of pumpkin pancakes, watching Say Yes to the Dress, NFL, going to farmers markets, and making soup.

Being a busy twentysomething living in LA on the third floor of an apartment building without cable is a little less ideal for lazy fall weekends. But just like everything in LA I am learning to adapt. I stir in pumpkin puree into my oatmeal instead of making oodles of pancakes. Then there's always Netflix and Rachel-visiting for television. I missed out on my family's trip to Wilcox this weekend-- my first ever-- but have found another pumpkin patch up north that I am going to visit on Saturday. I'm making it work. Tim Gunn would be proud.

Friday was a perfect welcome mat to my weekend. In the morning I headed into work at my payday loan consolidation call center job (Let's just call it SOS... the name of the company in my sketch based on said call center job) for a couple hours before heading to West Hollywood for a JOB INTERVIEW WITH A MAJOR, MAJOR COMPANY.

Yes, indeed, I can't say what company. As soon as they found out I had a blog they were very quick to mention that I couldn't say anything about it. Duh. But it was an honor to be there, let me tell you that. The building was enormous and enormously intimidating. There were large gold emblems on the walls and everyone had lanyards around their necks to buzz them into different doors. I couldn't stop smiling. It was a nice feeling to be somewhere near what I want to do. Just to refill a little bit of that hope. I may have been running a bit low. The interview went really well. They did their best to scare me, and believe me, they did. But I'm a tough cookie. We'll see what happens.

Friday night was movie night--- with my two favorite ladies, Sarah and Danielle from SOS. I have to be honest with you, I secretly love working at SOS, if anything simply because now I can call these girls my friends. We all get to work every morning at 7 am so we can catch up with each other over breakfast and coffee. I don't know what I'd do without them-- we constantly keep each other laughing throughout the day. This was our first real life friendship outing. It was pretty successful, me thinks. We went and saw 50/50, with Joseph Gordon-Leavitt and Seth Rogen about best friends dealing with cancer. It was BEAUTIFUL. A lovely balance between comedy and real life stuff. We all tried not to cry or sniffle in front of each other, which was kind of hilarious. It was a big step in our friendship. I'm lucky to know them. Thanks, SOS.

Saturday morning I went to my obligatory Yoga XFlowsion class before packing up some Trader Joe's goodies and heading to Rachel's... for the most epic day ever. Just thinking about it makes me smile. Though once I got into the USC area all of my unfortunate memories from two weekends ago flooded back to me... but I conquered them and now have new happy Rachel thoughts to replace them.

Rachel and I are two of a kind, really. Every time we see each other we're still so excited that I FINALLY live in California. We turned on her beautiful, beautiful cable loving television to catch some college football. Then we got to work on some homemade food: apple pie, 5 layer bean dip, lavash chips, guacamole, and fresh popcorn right off the stove.

It was some kind of beautiful--- the autumny breeze rolling in through the window, cuddled up on the couch with a refreshing cold Stella, delicious warm aroma in the air.... Mmm. And of course, all the while we were decked out in our teal and black to support the first game of the season for the SAN JOSE SHARKS!

It was an amazing game--- we beat the silly Phoenix Coyotes 6-2. Very good for the ego. Talk about a season opener!

During the game I start putzing with my hair. I knew the general idea of how to do a fishtail braid but had never really tried. I secured my silly braid into an elastic and went into the bathroom to see it. I screamed. This was my first fishtail braid EVER ya'll. I must have magical fingers.

It's the little things in life, friends.

I somehow motivated myself to get out of bed yesterday morning to go to Yoga Shelter, grumbling all the while. I'm glad I went though. First of all it got me out of the house, and second of all, dear ol' Deborah needed me.

Deborah is a 54-year-old woman who was doing yoga for the first time ever... at Yoga Shelter. A little ambitious. She talked my ear off before class, expressing her concern about not keeping up but proudly boasting the amount of money she saved by buying the classes on Groupon. By the time class started I knew her whole life story-- bad trick knees and epileptic dog included. She did really well though, despite giving a few exasperated grunts from time to time and muttering things to me in between downward dogs. I just kept telling her to go into child's pose, it's okay, Deborah. She thanked me profusely for helping and comforting her as we walked out together.

There must be a lesson here, somewhere. Perhaps it's when you're feeling unmotivated, get off the couch and do stuff anyways. If not for you, then for Deborah. You never know when she might need you.

And now for some quick updates on life:

I am currently signing Jamie and I up for a Turkey Trot in Santa Monica for Thanksgiving. It's only a little baby 5K, not too bad. Just enough to burn off some percentage of the mass quantity of food we will certainly consume during the day.

I am also still on the hunt for some sort of recreational team to join. YWCA's activities have been rather uninspirational while the various women's rugby teams have become more intimidating upon closer inspection. I've found some volunteer jobs with kids that I need to follow up on though. Anything to get me out of the house and keep me busy!

I am unfortunately and pathetically back on OkCupid. I KNOW, you guys. I get how lame it is. This time its much less comedic and much more embarrassing, as I can no longer use the convenient "I'm-a-writer-I-need-material" excuse. Done that. But really, those boys love me on OkCupid. They say the nicest things. You know the saying "cowards write their insults"? Well the hopeless romantic cowards send me flattering messages on OkCupid. Sorry, Johnny, I know how I am disappointing you. But the good news about OkCupid is that I can really screen through people: You were in marching band? That's not going to work. You can't grow facial hair? No thanks. You're only 5'6"? I'd rather not. You know. Being picky on an internet based level is slightly more acceptable, right? I'd deactivate my account but it says I have to be active for at least a week... (Another convenient theory). I GUESS I'll just have to keep checking my nice honeyed messages from boys until then.

I've been hanging out with Jackie a lot recently and it has been so refreshing. We spent so much time together when I first got to LA and then I got swamped with life. Now that things are settling down it's been so lovely catching up with her. We saw The Ides of March last night--- pretty darn fantastic. Jackie is also currently in makeup school and asked me the other day to come be a model in her class.


I'm working with her friend, Hillie, a sassy 29-year-old with long bleach blonde dreads. She's awesome. They're working on different eras right now. Jackie showed Hillie a picture of me on facebook and Hillie said she instantly knew what she wanted to do with me.


A Gibson Girl, turn of the century. I've been told I look good in bonnets before, but this? Well, hand me a glass bottle of cola and call me Mary! I am slightly bummed, simply because the girls around me were getting 1940s curls and lipstick and 1970s Farrah Fawcett waves and icy eyeshadow... and then there was me... hair teased and flopped on my head like a big pile of hair poop with just white powder on my face. Ah well. I like being different. Pictures to come soon!

I hope everyone has found something pleasant to do, see, or eat on their Monday. After all, "mon" in French means "my", so technically every Monday is "my-day". Isn't that special?

I made some homemade veggie pizza and only have four more episodes of Arrested Development before I'm DONE. I know what I'm doing tonight.

Happy Monday, ya'll. Kisses.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Come on, Come Out


The time has come again! My favorite month of the year is upon us and I'm thrilled. I've been trying to wear orange or other autumny colors every day, just to pretend like LA has seasons. I now realize that even Tucson has a little bit of a season change, even if it's just the lack of temperatures over 95 degrees.

Becca and I just got back from a trip to Trader Joe's. I made it a rule to only buy Fall inspired items: pumpkin puree, dried cranberries, fresh sunflowers, oatmeal, acorn squash, fresh crisp apples and spiced applesauce.

Luckily the weather decided to play along today, too. It's very chilly here and has been raining all day. Not a torrential downpour, just enough to give me reason to stay bundled inside all afternoon. I'll take any excuse to sit inside with a warm kitty and a cup of tea. I watched a couple episodes of Arrested Development and now I am debating popping in Bridget Jones' Diary. It might be one of those days. You know, eat ice cream, shake your spoon at the men (or lack thereof) in your life, and remember that despite your daily mishaps (which let's face it, never seem to cease or be less ridiculous), you're fine "just the way you are".

Work at the debt consolidation company has been interesting. We are transitioning between offices and it's been anything but smooth. I couldn't go into work on Monday because our phone lines were down. Obviously, me being a phone sales girl, I was out of luck. I took the morning to cruise over to Runyon Canyon. I'd never been over there and wanted to see what all the hubbub was about. It's a beautiful little escape from the hustle and bustle of LA, tucked into the Hollywood hills. When I Yelp'ed it to find the address I stumbled across many warnings about dog poop. They weren't kidding. Before my eyes could even see the entrance gate my nostrils were forcibly feasting on stinky smells. Yuck. Come on, LA residents. No one wants to smell your pooch poop. Be responsible.

I've been trying to make it a habit to talk with Alison on Mondays, as that's one of her days off in her very busy week. I hiked and panted up to the top, chatting all the while. It was a perfect little view of the sprawling Los Angeles cityscape. It might not be much but it's home. It was nice to talk with Alison, too. She always grounds me when I feel like I am floating off into silliness.

Afterwards I met up with Jackie and her sweet friend Chris for lunch and walking. We caught up over some homemade chicken soup then drove over to Ventura Boulevard to walk around in shops to look at things we couldn't afford. It's nice to pretend though. I browse around and try to imagine that I can buy anything and everything I could want or need. Not a bad thing to put into the Universe.

Monday night I was called into work at LUSH. My best LUSH buddy Hilda and I always end up working together and it's the best. We get along so well-- listening to Frank Sinatra, giving each other hand and arm massages by the door to bring in customers, and of course talking about the drama that neither of us actually have in our life. You know, girl stuff. After work we also arranged to get tickets for the KINGS vs. SHARKS hockey game at the end of November! Woo!

I know I know I know. I just said I wasn't going to spend any more money on sporting events. But she's a huge Kings fan and I am a Stage 1 Sharks fan and it's just necessary, okay? I'm super pumped about it.

I've been thinking a lot about picking up new hobbies. I need to broaden my social scene up here. I've got Bravo and Bang people to hang out with but I'm always looking for new social opportunities. I've been browsing around on Craigslist and the web in general trying to find intramural teams to join. After weeding through the creepy people looking for "activity partners", all that's really left are teams that say they're "non-competitive" and that all "types and sizes" should join... and then show a picture of said team, full of gender ambiguous women with bulging muscles and angry faces. Hmm. Perhaps not. I have also been looking at a Santa Monica women's rugby team. They look a couple less shades of scrappy, so maybe that's something. Or you know, if that doesn't work I can always join a book club.

Our office at my debt consolidation job has been a mess over the last couple of days. Yesterday we all got sent home early because some bonehead decided that he should spray epoxy all over the walls. We had to evacuate. Yours truly was of course on a sales call at the time, but being the trooper that I am, I tried to close the sale. I started to get a little woozy as person by person headed out the door behind me. Finally my friend Danielle tapped me on the shoulder to tell me to leave. It's a good thing she did, because I was apparently slurring my words and I actually had to pull up my sales script to read along with-- something I haven't needed since my second week working there. Everyone was super excited to leave. Everyone except me, who gets paid hourly while everyone else is on salary. (Shakes fist). Ah well. I got to go home and make a big yummy pasta dish and hang out with Becca.

Last night I made the short little drive over to Glendale to meet my new favorite family. Lorelei (Sabrina, my sketch class teacher's sister) and Darrin (Ezra's co-worker and brother-in-law... yes, they're all related, I don't know why I make things so complicated) invited me over to meet their adorably precocious 2 1/2 year old daughter, Julia. Folks, I don't know if I've met a nicer family. Julia and Lorelei made cookies for me when I walked in. And not just any kind of cookies...

OH. YEAH. I love those ready bake cookies. Who doesn't?

Within five minutes Julia and I went from handshake... to hug... to a kiss on the cheek. The girl moves fast. They gave me a tour of their sweet little home and then we went outside to enjoy the lovely weather in their backyard. After playing a couple of rounds of "Julia's-an-egg-and-I'm-a-nest-...-hatch-little-bird-and-fly-around-the-yard!", I headed home. Julia's pouty lip made an appearance and she was sad to see me go. I was sad to see me go, too, really. Here's to hoping I make the babysitter cut!

I stopped by the house to pick up Jimmy, then we were on our way to pick up Becca's brother, Jonny, from LAX. Jonny was out here a couple months ago to take a look at a film school Joey Travolta started for adults with autism. All of his paperwork finally went through and he started school today! He loves it already. He's going to be living with us for five months. It's like the Brady Bunch around here: Me, Becca, Jimmy, Jonny, and Frasier. A full house for sure, but we like it that way. (Just don't let my landlord know).

I've been busy writing my life away recently. I'm trying to write for at least an hour a day. I started my first opinion piece on Sunday and it's incredibly exciting. It's a clustercuss of thoughts at the moment but I'm hoping to whittle the excess away to find something interesting and cohesive. More on that later. I also wrote a sketch today for my All-Female Sketch Group rehearsal tonight at Bang. I had trouble thinking of something to write, and then remembered the old adage, "Write what you know". So guess what it's about? Yup, it's about a girl, sitting at a desk with a headset on, answering calls about consolidating payday loan debt. You wouldn't believe the material I've collected from working at that job, really. We'll see how it goes over.

You guys.

I just got a call for a job interview. My eyes may or may not have started watering. I'm not going to say anything as of yet, simply because I don't want to jinx myself. But I can say this much: it's a big deal. Her first question? "Tell me a little bit about your relationship with writing..." And of course she called me now-- while I am sitting here writing about writing. I was just thinking this morning about how much karma I've been racking up recently. I guess it's time for Ol' Jenny to start cashing in. Fingers crossed.

Happy beginning of October, everyone. Here's some of my favorite October jams to play you out.

Really-- kisses.

"Come on, Come Out" by A Fine Frenzy

"White Winter Hymnal" by Fleet Foxes

"Winter Winds" by Mumford & Sons

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Brew Your Own

"If you do not have patience, you cannot make beer."
-African proverb

I developed a taste for beer after spending my 21st birthday in a beer tent in Bavaria. I was never much of a beer drinker but after cheers-ing fellow Germans dressed in a dirndl with a full polka band playing and a bruise on my hand from holding my stein glass, I have never looked back. There's something rather ritualistic and comforting about beer. Good beer.

I stumbled across this quote and thought it was quite fitting for the last couple of days. A lot of reflecting time, a lot of good friends, and yes, a lot of beer. But all through this delightful weekend the whole concept of patience was flying around in the back of my head. I sometimes forget that everything is happening in due time. When you're focused on it life can sometimes feel like you're in slow motion.

It really was a great weekend. Wasn't exactly as planned, but I like that kind of spontaneity. Lord knows I try to make things soft and effortless, but frankly you can only let planning go so far. The Universe gets the rest. Which is oh-so-exciting.

I did make some yummy homemade treats this week though thanks to a little bit of planning:

Banana Bread.

Blueberry Coffee Cake Muffins.

And my first ever lasagna. Turkey Sausage and Goat cheese.


Everything came out deliciously and we've been noshing all weekend. Jimmy had a record of 5 muffins in one day.

Spencer came in late Thursday night. We got home and enjoyed some lasagna, beer and wine, and episodes of Arrested Development with Jimmy. I cannot even tell you how much I am obsessed with that show. Really. Go watch it. We called it an early night to charge up for the weekend.

Friday morning meant a very special trip to the Griddle for breakfast. Spencer had his doubts due to his loyalty to Pork Store Cafe in San Francisco so Jims and I set out to welcome him to the Darkside. We had lots of yummy french toast and Jims had the pumpkin pancake. After breakfast the three of us jumped in the car and headed to Santa Monica to do a little exploring.

Here's us awkwardly posing on the pier. It was a bit windy and actually started raining!

But awkward photos weren't the highlight of our pier trip... but rather our pretty fantastic celeb sighting:

Yup. Kel Mitchell from Kenan & Kel, Good Burger, and a personal favorite, Mystery Men. He was taking what looked like engagement photos with a rather curvaceous lady friend. The three of us didn't even try to be inconspicuous. We literally stood and stared. Not my typical ice queen status but come on, it was Kel. He probably needed the attention.

After wandering up and down 3rd Street Promenade, we headed to Burbank to see Moneyball (after a good hour in traffic on the 405--shakes fist).

It was a very interesting movie. Not the kind of sports movie Hollywood usually presents, which was refreshing. It was fantastically acted but perhaps a bit drawn out. The boys are from the Bay Area and Spencer is a huge A's fan so they both appreciated all the Bay Area footage and references.

Later that night we all went to their friend Kevin's house. He lives just down the road from me up in the Studio City hills. I thought my third floor view was nice but it is hardly comparable to his view of the city at night. It was beautiful. We drank some beers, listened to Kevin jam on his guitar, and watched some South Park. A lovely night.

Saturday can probably be summed up in one word: disastrous. I realize how dramatic that sounds. Saturday afternoon the Wildcats were playing USC! Very exciting. The boys got up and headed right out the door to meet up with friends and pregame. I thought I'd make a later exit, simply so I could shower and because Jimmy and I had to drive separately anyways. I threw on my Arizona shirt, my most controversial college-girl-looking-cut-off-jean-shorts (that are really only socially acceptable at collegiate football games where other girls look much more lewd by contrast), and headed out the door with a big happy smile on my face.


I left at 11 am. Got to USC at 11:20. And didn't park my car until 12:25.

It was ridiculous. I cannot relay to you how stressed out I was. There was literally no where for me to go, not to mention no one really knew where the U of A tailgate was. At one point, I gave up and decided to pay $20 for parking, only to pull in and realize I only had $12. I rather theatrically unraveled my dollar bills, and knew what I had to do. I instantly turned on the waterworks hoping they would let me park there anyways. ...It didn't work, but MAN did I give it the old college try. It was very convincing, and the men who worked at the booth were very sympathetic. You should have seen my watery doe eyes. Luckily they weren't wooed by womanly weakness and didn't let me park there, because I was actually on the completely wrong side of the stadium (Jimmy....).

I finally found a parking spot somewhere kind of close to the stadium at a parking meter. Score. I sprinted several blocks, only to find that everyone had already left the tailgate.

I was flustered, for sure. Jimmy encouraged me to get a ticket and go in to watch the game. Bryan was inside and I desperately wanted to see him. So, being the lascivious wrong-doer that I am, I bought a ticket from a scalper. Ohhhhhh I'm a bad girl. He offered it for $45. I pulled out my womanly charm again to try and redeem myself, batting my eyelashes and all. "$20". "Ehh... Okay. Done".

Allllriiigghhhht. I've still got it. Jimmy was sweet enough to lend me the extra $8 and I headed into the stadium.

I even finagled my way into the wrong section. "Wait ma'am, I have to see your ticket." "Oh! Is this not section 3? (sweet, naive smile)". "Oh no, it is. Enjoy the game!" I met up with all the other Wildcats. Man, did it feel good. I've missed singing "Bear Down Arizona" and being a poor sport, etc. Nothing quite like college athletics. I was so excited to see Bryan, too. I seriously adore him.

U of A gave a good fight, really. It was a pretty fun game, minus our kicker being completely worthless. Honestly, it's just getting ridiculous. The Cats held their own though and you've got to respect that. Bryan, his brother Brett, and our sweet friend Paige and I made the trek back to my car, but not without making a stop at Taco Bell to load up on not-free water and mystery meat. I drove the group back to their hotel and headed home.

I was exhausted. I took a solid four hour nap to unwind after the day.

Then I met up with all of my silly Bravo friends for a party at Bobby's house. It was amazing. The moment I walked in they could sense I was tense and I was instantly surrounded by love and good listeners. I don't know where I would be without Bravo, really. I hung out for an hour or so and watched some beer pong before having to head back. Blake and Nikolai drove over an hour or so later, armed with cookie dough ice cream and popcorn. I think I'll keep them. We were all up till 3 am eating crap and watching weird youTube videos. Good thing we're young.

I reluctantly woke Spencer up this morning to take him back to LAX. He has season tickets to the Raiders and therefore had an early flight to make it to the game. He's a good kid.

I miraculously don't have to work today. I've spent the day trying to be as productive as my sleepy brain will let me. I have written out a list of goals for myself, applied for three Disney jobs and two Craigslist ads, re-started The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, watched three episodes of Arrested Development, and written this entry.

But really, it's time for me to go do something real. I understand that I am only 22, but why does that have to slow me down? I've got to kick things up a notch. Time to get out of this debt-consolidating, not-too-much-money-in-the-bank-cycle. I've got too much to offer to wait till I am 26 or some other age others deem appropriate to start doing things.

I am thinking about expanding things a bit on my blog. I mean, as much as my life summaries must THRILL you, I want to start to work in some of my opinion pieces and maybe even some short stories. Which I know can be different to read, but hey, what better way for me to get in some practice? So look forward to that. I'm sure you are.

I hope everyone takes some time to just be with yourself. A very wise fictional character by the name of Carrie Bradshaw once said, "The most exciting, challenging and significant relationship of all is the one you have with yourself". I think if we all took some time to give that quote a little bit of weight in our lives, we would be happier. As much as I admire others taking care of each other, sometimes you've got to take care of yourself first. If you're happy it's much easier to make others happy. Which I realize is all that I really want in life. To be happy. Everything else just falls together when you're happy. So I'm going to keep on doing that and see what the Universe has in store for me. That and drinking beer. And hopefully patience finds me somewhere along the way, too.